Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Review: Silva Siju.

When is a compass not a compass, when it's a head torch. I had considered doing a head to head (pardon the pun) review of four head torches. But I decided that each torch was good in it's own right and each had particular benefits. So the first head torch review is the Silva Siju.

The Silva Siju is tiny. I'm not going to say it ways nothing as it wouldn't be true, but it is only 35g in weight. And I won't say it takes up no space, because it does. But when in it's cocoon it is tiny as the photograph below shows.

Silva Siju in it's cocoon.

The Silva Siju, as specified by Silva has an output of 16 lumens with a 48 hour battery life at the economy setting. But how well does it use these 16 lumens. Well, to be honest, it's not brilliant. I have an LED Lenser that is 16 lumens (P3 to be reviewed later) and it is phenomenal. But, and there is a but, the Silva Siju is incredibly cheap. It can be picked up for £10.99 plus P&P on amazon. The P3 will cost two to three times as much.

The Siju, because it is so small and light can be put pretty much anywhere, backpack, pocket, survival kit, first aid kit, etc. And the light given, while I would say struggles to reach out to 18 meters as claimed by Silva (I mean an effective 18 meters), it will help you put up a tent, read a book, look at a map, look in your backpack......I guess you get the idea. While I was able to work my way around a campsite with it, it wasn't bright enough for me to relax. The batteries used are two CR2032 lithium button cells.

The lamp has three settings. Holding the power button down for a few seconds turns the torch on, with full power the default. Quickly pressing the button again puts the torch in a lower power setting. Pressing again turns on the strobe setting.

Another feature is the tilt feature permitting the user to vary how far in front of you the lamps beam shines.

Siju tilted forward in mount.

The head strap on the Siju is comfortable, but a little fiddly to adjust. However, after about a minute, I had a head torch that fitted nicely considering it's size.

Siju strap and cocoon.

So, the Siju is not an headlamp I would depend on to find my way at night unless it was an emergency. But it has a lot of practical uses in an emergency, or just for convenience. It has to be remembered that it is incredibly cheap and wouldn't hurt to have in a backpack or pocket just for in case. There are better options, but they will cost you more.

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