Head torch obsessive Fox Morgan gathered together a hot selection of some of the most popular head lamps on the market, including this Forclaz HL500 200 lumen head torch for review.

Product Overview

Overall rating:

Forclaz HL500 head torch


  • Good level of waterproofing, easy USB charging, great value for money


  • may lack sophistication of more powerful head torches


Forclaz HL500 Head Torch Review – Gear Test

Price as reviewed:


best head torch for sailing - forclaz HL500 from decathlon

Forclaz HL500 USB


Buy Forclaz HL500 from Decathlon

This budget friendly Forclaz HL500 is remarkably robust and simple to use.
It has an easy to navigate light cycle using a plus and minus  button. Starting with red first, followed by low level white and then a brighter white and then one more level up to 200 lumens. Press minus button to scroll back down through the brightness back to red and then off, or hold the minus button down to switch off at any point.

Pressing and holding the plus button at any time will activate the white strobe light.

Holding down both plus and minus buttons will lock the torch to avoid it accidentally being switched on in a kit bag which is a really handy feature to have and especially more so at this price.

Charging is equally very easy, though it uses a micro USB not USB C cable. It comes with the required cable though so you don’t have go scrabbling around for an older micro USB cable for it.

The lamp positioning has positive clickable notches and can go from horizontal all the way to facing vertical downwards in 9 notches.

The USB charging socket is covered with a rubber cover, though the rubber cover doesn’t rotate all the way out of the way so it can be a bit fiddly for less dexterous fingers.

Next to the charging socket is a coloured LED that lights up momentarily when switching the light on to let you know the battery remaining status. As per other headtorches this is a simple glance to see green, amber or red to indicate whether it’s time to plug it in for a charge.

As the cheapest head torch I have tested so far, it’s clear to see that the ForclazHL500 is exceptionally good value for money. Also considering the waterproofing to IPX5, which inspires a little more confidence if you’re out getting the odd wave over your head.

The back of the torch body has a small foam pad which I found quite comfortable and helped to grip it to stay in place. The head strap, though very simple and nothing flash, is easy to replace when it loses its elasticity.

It came packaged in a compostable no frills cardboard container and no surplus plastic anywhere.

Light Modes:

Mode One : Red light, 4 lumen , 40 hours

Mode Two : White, 20 lumen, 30 hours

Mode Three : White, 80 lumen, 8 hours

Mode Four : White, 200 lumen, 3 hours

Mode Five : white strobe, 200 lumen, 20 hours


  • 200 Lumen head torch
  • Weight 89g
  • waterproofing IPX 5 (IPX5 – Protects from water jets at any direction)
  • USB rechargeable built in battery

Results of testing:

Battery life and recharging time 5/5

Full beam illumination 4/5

Low level light for reading 4/5

Red light 3/5

Water proofing 4/5

Eco (recyclable packaging and ability to replace head strap) 5/5

Weight and comfort 4/5

Buy Forclaz HL500 from Decathlon

If you are looking for a head torch with a more powerful beam then consider the ForclazHL900
If you are looking for a head torch with more red light options then consider the USE Raw Pro
If you want something with more of a spot beam, then consider the LedLenser MH5

click here to have a look at other head torches in our group test