Olight H16 Wave, Hands Free Operation

The Olight H16 wave headlight, looks and shares many components with the HS2 that was released last year. The HS2 was a light designed for running, and the H16 Wave is designed more for every day normal use and features a no touch on/off ability. Thanks to Olight for sending this to me to review, let’s take a further look at the H16 Wave.

Full Image Gallery: https://imgur.com/a/hc07d(link is external)
YouTube Version of this Review:

Construction
The construction of the H16 is pretty similar to the HS2 but with a few changes. It appears the battery packs being used are the same in terms of design and capacity. They are encased in black plastic, have the 4 LED battery indicators and charge via microUSB with a silicone cover for the USB port. The straps are stretchy black elastic material with Olight printed on them and silver reflective aarrows. The cable the runs from the battery to the headlamp is one piece which differs from the HS2 where it was two pieces with a connection in the middle. It has a coil that’s allows the cable to stretch to adjust for different size heads.


The Head of the light is made mostly of plastic except for a metal heatsync behind the LED’s. I believe it’s anodized aluminum and it has cooling fins. The front side is plastic and houses the two LED,s and the lenses. Below it is the single blue button covered with a silicon cover. The wave feature I believe is either side of this. The blue button does illuminate when the wave feature is turned on.The light is removable from the strap but the battery is not. There is a bit of foam on the back of the light housing that combined with the strap is plenty of padding. Overall I find this to be adjustable and comfortable as a headlamp to use for several hours due to it’s low weight and padding.



Size/Weight
Weight including strap and battery is 120 grams. Size of the headlamp portion is nearly square at 40mm by 39mm and 25mm in maximum thickness.

LED/Runtime
The H16 Wave uses two Cree XP-G3 LED’s in cool white and places two different optics in front of them. The LED’s work together and you can’t use one at a time like you could on the HS2. For the optics you have a traditional TIR style optic for a beam that throws a bit and has a large hotspot. Mine does exhibit some oddities that I can pick out on a white surface. The other optic is checkered diffuser which creates a flood beam.

TIR Optic Beam Shot

Flood Reflector Beam Shot

Together (How it operates)

Runtimes on this light were good on the included 2000mAh battery pack. It was able to run starting out in High mode at 500 lumens for the 5 timed minutes and stepping down as the timer kicked in down to 350 lumens for another 130 minutes, and then down to medium at 100 lumens for about 15 minutes and then it went low at 5 Lumens for the remaining time. Total run time in my test was right at 140 minutes which is good in my opinion.

The light does have 4 small LED on the battery pack that when battery check button is pressed alert you to the charge status. It also has an audible beeper that will beep when the battery hits 10% and it will continue beeping for 10 minutes. You can stop the beeping by pressing the battery check button.

Charging
Charging the non removable battery is accomplished via microUSB. The light charges at a maximum of 1A and takes quite a while. From empty to 100% in my test it took just under 3 hours. The light will run while it’s charging but not on Turbo.

UI/Wave
The UI on the H16 Wave is simple, like most Olights. From off click the switch and you get High, click again and you get medium, click again and you get low. Starting in high is unfortunate, and I wish it started in low instead.

The wave feature allows you to turn the light on and off via a wave of your hand in front of the light. You need to be reasonably close to the light for this to work. Closer then 2 inches. The wave feature only turns the light on or off, and doesn’t change the mode. I would love to see a mode of the light where you could configure Wave to change modes instead of just on or off. To enable the wave feature when the light is on you long press on the single button and the light will very briefly flicker. You do the same to turn it off. The wave feature will reset to a default of off if it isn’t used within 1 hour.

Packaging
The packaging is similar to Olight’s other 2018 products. It came in a white retail box that was narrow and long. The sides have a few bits of information and the back has most of it. Inside the light is housed in plastic tray with a clear lid. Included in this was the headlamp itself already attached to the strap, the manual, and a nice long microUSB cable.





MSRP at the time of review is $59.99 with a 2 year warranty.

Conclusion
If you have read my previous headlamp reviews, or watched my videos you know I like headlamps and think everyone should have one. The H16 is a slight rethink on the HS2 and I think it makes it better for general users. The wave feature works better than I expected it to and I can see some situations where your hands might be dirty and you want to turn on the headlamp. This would require thinking ahead though and having it already in that mode. Instead of using the wave for on and off I think it might be more useful as a way to go from one mode to another. Like other Olight headlamps I have reviewed this one is built well and I don’t expect problems. I would have preferred a neutral white or warm white option but Olight seems to prefer cool white on most all their products instead. This would be a good headlamp to add to a hiking pack, to use around the house or for all you home mechanics as I showed earlier. Pick it up on Amazon or Olight Store.

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