Tag Archives | Princeton Tec

Princeton Tec VIZZ

I always look forward to seeing what Princeton Tec will come up with next – especially when it comes to headlamps. I have been using their lights for more than 15 years! Their newest headlamp is called the VIZZ and it looks like it has a lot going for it.

Princeton Tec VIZZ

The VIZZ has only one button. The user can dictate how the light behaves by how they interact with this button. Click it one time for red light output from 2 5mm LEDs. Click it two times for 150 lumens of white light. If you depress and hold the button, you can activate 2 dimable 5mm white LEDs. Click three times to lock the VIZZ to prevent accidental activation.

I have a strong affinity for headlamps that either come on in low red mode or that allow the user to easily access this mode without shuffling through the bright white modes. This prevents you from ruining your dark adjusted vision.

The VIZZ runs on 3x AAA batteries which is a form factor that Princeton Tec has perfected. It keeps the light small enough and light enough that it doesn’t need a top strap but still provides long runtimes (up to 160 hours for the VIZZ).


New Headlamps from Princeton Tec

Princeton Tec’s (PT) headlamp lineup boasts two new additions. One is made for big boys and one isn’t.

The FRED is a new take on PT’s popular Fuel headlamp. There are two main differences between the FRED and its predecessor, the Fuel. The first is the replacement of one of the white 5mm LEDs with a single red 5mm LED. The second difference is that the FRED always turns on in low red mode. These two features combined ensure that the users dark adjusted vision will not be disrupted when the light is turned on and they serve to mitigate the risks of an accidental light discharge in a sensitive situation. The FRED features 4 output modes: low red, high red, low white, high white.

Princeton Tec FRED

The new BOT headlamp is not for you. Its for your kids. It features the same great compact form as the PT Byte but, unlike the Byte, it features 2 5mm LEDs. There are four different bright colors to choose from which are sure to please even picky kids. There are 2 output modes: low and high. I would have loved to have had a real PT head lamp that fit me when I was a kid.

Princeton Tec BOT

Review: Princeton Tec Remix Pro

The versatile Remix Pro is now available in Multicam.

I broke the news about the Princeton Tec Remix Pro being available in Multicam at the end of last month. Since that time, I’ve had plenty of time to get to know the Remix Pro and I am very impressed. It might be the best all around headlamp that I have ever used.


  • Battery: 1x CR123
  • Weight: 2.25 ounces including battery
  • Max Output: 70 Lumens
  • Runtime: 4 – 40 hours depending on output mode
  • Light Source: 1x white Maxbight LED, 3x red Ultrabright LEDs (other colors available)
  • Colors: black with black headband, tan with Multicam headband

Modes of Operation

The Remix Pro has one of the most sensible user interfaces that I have ever used. It is almost impossible to produce an accidental burst of bright white light that can compromise your dark adjusted vision or spook any game you may be hunting. The light will always turn on in the low Ultrabight LED setting, which in my case is low red mode. This is a very important feature to me.

  • Press the  button once to turn the light on in low red mode.
  • Press the button again within 1.6 seconds to switch to high red mode.
  • Press the button a third time within 1.6 seconds to turn the light off.
  • Press and hold the button at anytime for about 2 seconds to switch to low white mode.
  • Press the button again within 1.6 seconds to switch to high white mode.
  • Press the button a third time within 1.6 seconds to turn the light off.

As you can see, the operation is very straight forward. It only takes a few moments to learn how to operate the switch. Once learned, the switch allows easy access all of the Remix Pro’s output modes. It should also be noted that, if at anytime, more than 1.6 seconds passes between button presses, the light will turn off on the next press. Mitigating the risk of accidental white light discharge and the ability to quickly extinguish the light is a must for users who are using the Remix Pro in discreet situations.

The red modes are well thought out. The low mode is low enough, though it could stand to be lower. It provides plenty of light for map reading and even navigation with fully dark adjusted vision. The high red mode is surprisingly bright and even though it is red light, it does diminish dark adjusted vision. It is bright enough to walk a trail at night. The low white mode is very useful. I use it far more than the high white mode. The beam profile of the white Maxbright LED is perfect. It more intense at the center but there isn’t really a tight hotspot like you see on some lights. The bright center gradually blends into a slightly less bright spill beam. If you stand in the doorway to a room, it lights the whole room, rather than just a spot.

The Remix Pro’s output modes will cover just about any lighting need that you may have within 50 yards. Many headlamps excel at either mid/long range illumination or up close illumination. The Remix Pro’s mix of LED types and output modes allow it to fill both of those roles very well. Whether you need to illuminate something at arms length or 50 yards down the trail, the Remix Pro has you covered.

The Remix Pro features two different types of LEDs for a wide variety of tasks.

Princeton Tec made the fence around the button larger to prevent the light from being turned on accidentally.


I recently praised the Princeton Tec Byte for its lightweight and compact size. While the Remix Pro is certainly larger than the diminutive Byte, I was surprised to find that it only weighs about 1/10th of an ounce more. This is due in large part to the Remix Pro’s use of a lithium CR123 battery. Lithium batteries tend to weigh less than alkaline batteries which is what I have installed in the Byte. The Remix Pro is a very light headlamp, especially for the amount of features that it delivers.

CR123 Battery

The Remix Pro is one of only a handful of headlamps that use the CR123 battery. Princeton Tec says that they developed the Remix Pro at the request of the US Military which uses CR123 batteries extensively. I suspect that many of the readers of this blog carry a Surefire light (or similar) every day, so they probably already have CR123 batteries on hand. Consolidating battery types is a very good thing so that you minimize the types of spare batteries that you have to carry.

As mentioned above, CR123 batteries are also very light weight which keeps the weight of the light and spare batteries to a minimum. Lithium batteries also have a very long shelf life thanks to their low discharge rate and they are very resistant to cold weather. Cold slows the chemical reaction that allows batteries to deliver power. Alkaline batteries are notorious for poor cold weather performance. Lithium batteries, like the CR123, are far more resistant to colder temperatures.

The strap adjusment slider can be used to open the battery compartment when you fingers are cold and wet.

The Multicam head strap matches Multicam Cordura nylon very well.


Many users will appreciate having a camo option like Multicam. Besides the obvious military uses, hunters will find that the Multicam color scheme blends many environments. Some hikers also like to use camo gear so they don’t distract from the scenery.

Hands Free Versatility

The Remix Pro can be mounted on the head strap for headlamp use but it can also be mounted to 1″ webbing like MOLLE webbing. Also, because of the well designed bracket, it can be used as a free standing area light. The Princeton Tech headlamps with their “asymmetrical” bracket really excel at this use. There are a number of ways that you can use the Remix Pro without having to actually hold it.


Princeton Tec has made an improvement to the Remix Pro in the form of a higher “fence” around the switch. This raised plastic fence  helps to prevent the button from being accidentally pressed while in a pocket or backpack.


The Remix Pro is easily the most versatile headlamp that I have ever owned. The 1 button user interface is easy to use and provides 4 useful output modes. It handles a very wide variety of lighting tasks with ease. It is light in weight and makes use of an excellent battery that you probably already carry spares for while you are in the woods. It also happens to be the only headlamp that I know of that is available in Multicam. Princeton Tec has really taken the headlamp to another level.

You can read more about the Princeton Tec Remix Pro on the Princeton Tec website.

Thank you Princeton Tec for providing the Multicam Remix Pro for review.

The Remix Pro can be mounted on MOLLE webbing for hands free use.

The asymmetrical bracket allows the Remix Pro to be used as a free standing task light.

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Princeton Tec Remix Pro – Now in Multicam!

Here is some big news… Keep an eye on Princeton Tec retailers and you will soon see a familiar camo pattern – Multicam. Princeton Tec is now making the Remix Pro with a tan light body and a Multicam strap. If you look closely you can also see the improved, taller “fence” around the switch. I will post a full review on this light soon.

The new Remix Pro features a tan body and Multicam head strap. Click to enlarge.

I also have a new and improved version of the Princeton Tec MPLS in hand. Stay tuned for pictures and a complete review.

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Review: Princeton Tec Byte

The Byte is Princeton Tec's latest entry into the head lamp market. Click to enlarge.

Smaller and lighter is almost always better when it comes to items that you have to carry during your outdoor pursuits and the new Princeton Tec (PT) Byte is certainly smaller and lighter than most head lamps. While it may be short on weight and size, it is definitely not short on function or features. Thanks to advances in LED technology, this tiny power house outclasses many larger head lamps.


  • LEDs: 1x white “Maxbright” LED, 1x red “Ultrabright” LED
  • Weight: 64 grams
  • Battery: 2x AAA batteries
  • Modes: red (Ultrabight), low white (Maxbright), high white (Maxbright)
  • User Interface: Click once for red, click again for low white, click again for high white, click again for off. The Byte must be cycled through all modes to be turned off.
  • Output: 35 lumens on high
  • Runtime: 146 hours in red mode, 96 hours in low white mode, 80 hours in high white mode
  • Price: $20

The Good

There is a lot to like with the Byte. The most obvious is the size and weight. Small and lightweight is the whole point of the Byte. This head lamp is truly small. It has to be held in your hand to truly appreciate how small it is. It is barely wider and longer than the 2 AAA batteries that power it. It is light enough that you will easily forget that you are wearing it and that is with alkaline batteries. Swap in some lightweight lithium batteries and the Byte will probably blow away in a light breeze. There are smaller head lamps on the market but they use coin or button cell batteries. The Byte is powered by inexpensive and easy to find AAA batteries. The larger capacity of AAA batteries versus button or coin cells allows the light to run longer at higher outputs.

The Byte is smaller than the Quad Tactical and most other head lamps. Click to enlarge.

The Byte is smaller in just about every dimension. Click to enlarge.

My favorite feature of the Byte is the red “Ultrabright” LED mode. The Byte’s red mode is very dim and it’s perfect. Most lights have “low” modes that are far too bright. A low mode should provide just enough light for reading a map or navigating a dark room without destroying your dark adjusted vision. The Byte does just that. It is the low mode that I have been wanting for years.

The white “Maxbright” LED has two modes – low and high. The low is more than enough light for most tasks like pitching a tent in the dark or cooking in camp. The high mode is surprisingly bright for such a diminutive light. It works well for those times when you need to see a little further up the trail.

The beam shape of the “Maxbright” modes is very good. There is a wide bright hotspot in the center that provides a fair amount throw. The hotspot tapers smoothly to a wide, bright spill beam that provides broad coverage. The beam shape is very well balanced for a variety of tasks and situations. The Byte’s tiny 3mm “Ultrabright” red LED provides a very wide beam with very few of the dark rings that seem to plague other red LEDs. It is extremely usable.

The switch is relatively large and easy to operate even with gloves on. The bottom of the Byte features a small area of texture that helps you get a grip on such a small light to aim it. The light clicks positively into each position in its arm bracket and can be aimed up or down to suit the user’s preference. The head band is smaller than on most Princeton Tec head lamps but it still retains the handy tool on the slider that makes it easy to open the Byte’s battery latch even with cold hands.

The Byte's switch is large and easy to use. Click to enlarge.

The Byte has a textured area on the bottom that helps the user grip the light to aim it. Click to enlarge.

The Byte head strap is thinner than most Princeton Tec head straps (shown with Quad Tactical strap). Click to enlarge.

The Byte retains the clever tool on the head band that helps open the battery compartment in spite of its smaller size. Click to enlarge.

The light itself seems very sturdy like any other Princeton Tec head lamp. It would make a good primary head lamp for less serious pursuits (camping, hiking, etc) and a great back up head lamp for pursuits that require a head lamp like caving. It would also make be the ideal head lamp to toss in your briefcase or the glove compartment of your car.

I should also note that the documentation that comes with the Byte is big improvement over what usually comes with other lights (including past Princeton Tec offerings). It contains information about how Princeton Tec measures their light’s runtime. Other companies are not usually forthcoming with this information which makes comparing lights very difficult since there are many ways to measure runtime. Princeton Tec also provides a handy chart on the packaging of the Byte that shows the distance at which the light is useful after set periods of time. This information gives you a tangible idea of how the output dims over time. I wish more light manufacturers would provide this sort of useful data.

Princeton Tec provides useful data about the runtime and output on the Byte's packaging. Click to enlarge.

The Bad

I have one nit to pick with the Byte. It is good that it turns on in low red mode. This is great because it helps to preserve the dark adjusted vision of the user. However, the light must be cycled through the low and then high white settings to turn it off. Even this quick exposure to bright white light will ruin your dark adjusted vision. Having to cycle through the brighter white settings basically defeats the purpose of the phenomenal low red setting.

Most of Princeton Tec’s other headlamps have a different user interface (UI) that allows the light to go straight from any setting to off with a press of the button after the light has been in that setting for a few a seconds. If Princeton Tec were to implement a similar UI on the Byte, it would be the closest thing to head lamp perfection that I have ever used.


The Byte is much more than just a back-up head lamp. It is a small headlamp that is as fully functional as much larger head lamps. It is both large enough and small enough at the same time. It has the best low red mode of any light, head lamp or otherwise, that I have ever used. It isn’t perfect but it begs the question… Why buy or carry anything bigger, heavier, or more expensive?

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