Petzl is one of the most widely known and respected headlamp manufacturers, up there with Black Diamond but with a wide variety of headlamp options that range from $20 entry level headlamps to $75+ feature packed options as well.
The Petzl Tikka is a solid entry level headlamp that offers a nice core of features and a simple design. Before jumping into the technical specs we wanted to highlight some of the pros and cons and who this headlamp is for.
Petzl Tikka Review Summary
Overall the Petzl Tikka is a jack of all trades, master of none. It comes in at an average price point so it is not competing with the ultra cheap $10-$15 entry level headlamps. At the same time it's not bright enough to compete with the higher end options and it lacks the dimming features you would expect to find on similarly priced models. 200 lumens is a decent brightness and this headlamp will work for most backpackers who are looking to reduce their pack weight. If you want an ultra bright headlamp you'll need to up your budget a little bit and look at some other models from Black Diamond or more expensive Petzl headlamps.
Petzl Tikka Technical Specifications
The technical specs on the Petzl Tikka aren't very enlightening and look similar to almost every other headlamp out there. It's fairly lightweight at 3 ounces, can run on 3 AAA batteries or a rechargeable battery pack that's also sold by Petzl. Here's a quick summary and a more in depth explanation below this table.
Petzl Tikka Specs
3 AAA batteries or rechargeable
battery pack (sold separately)
3.0 ounces/85 grams
IP X4 (weather resistant only)
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The water resistance is only IP X4 which means weather resistant. This headlamp is not water resistant or water proof so it shouldn't be submerged at all in any type of water.
The weather resistant rating means this headlamp can be used in the rain but the water resistance ends there. I'm not really sure why you'd ever need to use a headlamp underwater but if that's something your concerned about you'll want to look for a different headlamp with more water resistance because the Tikka is not it.
The battery life on the Petzl Tikka is about 3 hours at full brightness. This doesn't sound like a lot but normally you'll be using the headlamp on a lower brightness setting and only for small amounts of time while setting up camp or looking for things in the dark. In the low brightness setting the Tikka can last for around 100 hours which is more than enough for almost every scenario you could find yourself in but operating at low brightness is not always ideal so this is a big drawback of the Tikka.
Petzl Tikka Brightness
One of the most important features of a headlamp is the maximum brightness. Compared to other headlamps the Petzl Tikka is not as bright with a maximum beam distance of just 120 feet. For context, other headlamps with similar 200 lumen ratings can reach 150-180 feet.
There are 3 brightness settings on the Petzl Tikka but these brightness settings are not adjustable. Most other headlamps on the market will allow you to dim each setting so you can get the perfect amount of light and save battery life. Not being able to dim the brightness and only having 3 different settings gives you less flexibility to find the right brightness setting.
The Tikka also features a red light that is meant to be used after your eyes have adjusted to the darkness. The idea being that the red light won't cause your pupils to adjust to the bright light of the headlamp which allows you to have better night vision. This is a pretty standard feature on most headlamps that cost more than $20 and there isn't a lot of surprises with the way the red lamp functions.
Petzl Tikka Review Summary
If you had to sum up the Petzl Tikka in one word it would be "meh". It's a fine headlamp, it does the job, but there's nothing to really get excited about. If you want the best and the brightest, look at some of the more expensive Petzl models or something from black diamond.
If you want a low cost, lightweight headlamp then the Petzl Tikka is a fine option that's suitable for the weekend backpacker looking to save some money. For anyone who is more hardcore or will be getting a ton of use out of their headlamp we'd recommend you look elsewhere.
Just came back to the Petzl Tikka and threw what will likely be my last Black Diamond headlamp away. I have used several designs by BD and love the features but deplore the reliability.
I had the Black Diamond Storm and ended up shelfing it because it was so heavy and hard to use. It’s a shame because other than that it’s a nice headlamp.