Klarus HR1 Headlamp Review

Klarus HR1 Headlamp Review

Another Klarus, and this time the Klarus HR1 Headlamp.  This is a neat headlamp, with a few battery options, and a few emitters.  Read on!

Official Specs and Features

Here’s a link to the Klarus HR1 Headlamp product page.


There is only one emitter option, but two bodies.  Black (seen here) and teal.


MSRP on these is $49.95, and they’re available on Amazon! (Referral link.)

Short Review

I’m pleased with this headlamp, and it does work well.   It meets or beats specs, has some battery options, and can even be run off a powerbank!

Long Review

The Big Table

Klarus HR1 Headlamp
Emitter: Cree XP-G2 White (Secondary: Cree XP-G2 Warm)
Price in USD at publication time: $49.95
High Runtime (Both Emitters) Medium Runtime (Both Emitters)
LVP? Yes
Switch Type: E-Switch
Quiescent Current (A): ?
On-Board Charging? Yes
Power while charging? Yes, all modes.
Direct power from USB-C? Yes, all modes.
Claimed Lumens (lm) 600
Measured Lumens (at 30s) 656 (109.3% of claim)^
Candela per Lumen 3.8
Claimed Throw (m) 90
Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s) 253lux @ 3.199m = 2589cd
Throw (Calculated) (m) 101.8 (113.1% of claim)^
All my Klarus reviews!


Klarus HR1 Plus
Emitter: Cree XP-G2 White (Spotlight)
Candela per Lumen 4.8
Claimed Throw (m) 90
Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s) 226lux @ 3.266m = 2411cd
Throw (Calculated) (m) 98.2 (109.1% of claim)^


Klarus HR1 Plus
Emitter: Secondary: Cree XP-G2 Warm (Floodlight)
Candela per Lumen 2.6
Claimed Throw (m) 90
Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s) 189lux @ 2.412m = 1100cd
Throw (Calculated) (m) 66.3 (73.7% of claim)^

^ Measurement disclaimer:  Testing flashlights is my hobby. I use hobbyist-level equipment for testing, including some I made myself. Try not to get buried in the details of manufacturer specifications versus measurements recorded here; A certain amount of difference (say, 10 or 15%) is perfectly reasonable.

What’s Included

  • Klarus HR1 Headlamp
  • Klarus PP20 lipo battery
  • Charge cable (USB to USB-C)
  • Manual

Package and Manual

Build Quality and Disassembly

I’m really quite impressed about this light… for a “plastic body headlamp” in the… can we say “hiking” style?  it’s very well built.  Sturdy, even.

The band is nice, the cables are nice, …. everything’s just nice about this build.

Here on the back of the light itself, you can see a bit of metal peeking through.  Good for spreading the heat!  Also, see how the light body (very thin!) tilts downward for easy adjustment and beam location.

Size and Comps

• Dimensions: 65.6mm(2.58”) × 30.2mm(1.19”) × 18.2mm(0.72”)
• Weight: 46g (1.62oz) (w/o battery)

Retention and Carry

This is a 100% dedicated headlamp and no option for removal.  In fact the light is unusually cabled to the battery on the back – the cable is sewn into the headband to connect to the battery on the back.

The headband is very nice, too.  Soft and comfortable, with a soft patch on the back.

That said, it can wear a bit funny depending on your head shape, with the PP20 battery.  It sits off the back of the head a little, because it’s just a rectangle – not contoured.

It’s adjustable.  At the largest, it’ll be big enough for the biggest heads out there, but just.

Power and Runtime

Power for my HR1 is from the PP20, which is an option – and included at the $49.95 price on Amazon.

This power pack has a button – more on that part later.

It’s also very slim.

This is a 2000mAh LiPo.

There are two ports on this battery.  One is USB-C in, for charging, and one is USB-C out.  That the battery has both sex USB-C connectors makes it interesting – the light part plugs into the male port on the battery.  Conversely, the light’s port is a female USB-C, and that means it can be powered from a USB-C powerbank.  Unfortunately, the female port on the battery can’t be used as a powerbank.

Here are a couple of runtimes.  Interestingly the High with both emitters is the same as the high on the spot (main) emitter.

And below is why this review is coming at [late:30] instead of the more common Wednesday time; this runtime was just a massive file and my Excel absolutely hated it.  I finally just took a screenshot.  Hope it’s still useful.  ¯_(ツ)_/¯

The light does have a hard shutoff after some stepdowns.


The PP20 has a USB-C port for charging, with a press in cover.  The cover is very stable.

An appropriate cable is included.  I did not find the PP20 to charge with USB-C to USB-C.

Charging goes along at a respectable ~1A.  While charging, the switch on the PP20 is red, and when charging is complete, the switch turns green.  It’s a very well lit, even surround, too.  The switch also indicates power at turn on, for 5 seconds, as follows:

Green: 70%-100%
Orange: 30%-70%
Red: 10%-30%
Red Flashing: <10%

Modes and Currents

The manual really only makes claims for output when both emitters are on.   Amps are measured from when the light is being used as a powerbank, but at the least will give some idea.

Mode Mode Claimed Output (lm) Claimed Runtime Measured Lumens Tailcap Amps
High – Both 600 4h 656 1.01
Medium – Both 150 12h 156 0.23
Low – Both 30 32h 31 0.05
High – Spotlight 546 0.99
Medium – Spotlight 140 0.23
Low – Spotlight 31 0.05
High – Floodlight 460 1.01
Medium – Floodlight 140 0.23
Low – Floodlight 31 0.05
Red 5 43h 0.04

Pulse Width Modulation



Red emitter:

For reference, here’s a baseline shot, with all the room lights off and almost nothing hitting the sensor.  Also, here’s the light with the worst PWM I could find.  I’m adding multiple timescales, so it’ll be easier to compare to the test light.  Unfortunately, the PWM on this light is so bad that it doesn’t even work with my normal scale, which is 50 microseconds (50us). 10ms5ms2ms1ms0.5ms0.2ms.  In a display faster than 0.2ms or so, the on/off cycle is more than one screen, so it’d just (very incorrectly) look like a flat line.  I wrote more about this Ultrafire WF-602C flashlight and explained a little about PWM too.

User Interface and Operation

There are a couple of e-switches on the light body.  When wearing the light, the switches are on top.  The bigger (“Main”) switch is then on the right, and the smaller (“Side”) is on the left.

Here’s a UI table!

State Action Result
Off Click Main Switch (MS) On (Mode Memory)
Off Hold MS Low
On Hold MS Off
On Click MS Mode advance^
Off Click Side Switch (SS) No action
On Click SS Emitter change (Flood>Spot>Both)
Any Hold SS Red steady
Red Click SS Previous mode (even if that was “off”)
Off Double Click SS SOS
SOS Double Click SS Beacon
Off Hold Both Lockout^^
Lockout Click either 3x Unlock

^ Click within 5s from turn on, modes advance as H>M>L.  After 5s of being on, modes advance as H>M only.
^^ When locked out, clicking either button activates Red on very low 3x.

It’s possible I missed something here…. the UI is quite comprehensive.

LED and Beam

Both white emitters are Cree XP-G2.  One’s Neutral White (the larger TIR Spotlight) and the other’s a Warm White flood TIR output.  There’s also a small, all flood red emitter.

These beamshots are always with the following settings:  f8, ISO100, 0.3s shutter, and manual 5000K exposure.

Both emitters:

Spot emitter:

Flood emitter:

Red emitter:

Tint vs BLF-348 (KillzoneFlashlights.com 219b version) (affiliate link)

I keep the test flashlight on the left, and the BLF-348 reference flashlight on the right.

Both, spot, flood, then red.

I compare everything to the Killzone 219b BLF-348 because it’s inexpensive and has the best tint!


What I like

  • Use of USB-C
  • Meets specs
  • Mix of emitters having the same output is a weird choice
  • Dual Switch UI is convenient
  • Battery options (including AAA!)
  • Can run off a powerbank
  • Reasonable tilt adjustment on light body
  • No flappy bits, so good for running

What I don’t like

  • Powerbank on the PP20 would be great!


  • This light was provided by Klarus for review. I was not paid to write this review.
  • This content originally appeared at zeroair.org.  Please visit there for the best experience!
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14 thoughts on “Klarus HR1 Headlamp Review”

  1. Nice review! I look forward to getting my HR1 Plus. I was debating between getting this Klarus and the Biolite 330 headlamp. They seem to have similar features and design but I chose the Klarus because of their background in flashlights and headlamps. I do think that Klarus stole some of the design aspects from Biolite though.

    1. That Biolite is quite similar. But then you could likely say that about a whole host of headlamps like this.

      Both are probably good! Based simply on pics, I think the Klarus likely is built a little better. In particular, the PP20 part.

      Thanks for the comment!

  2. I’m going to buy a good headlight for night fishing, what do you recommend, this Klarus HR1 or the Nitecore NU32, which is better?
    Or there is a better option in this price range??
    Thanx a lot!

    1. The HR1 is probably smaller. I think all the lights on this one (vs the NU32) would be more useful – between the two I’d probably pick the HR1.

      If you’re willing to consider bigger lights, something with an 18650 format would probably be more ideal. Night fishing won’t be bouncing the light around, so a bigger light should work fine.

      The one I use around the house most is the Fenix HM65R.

      1. The Fenix is a great headlamp, but not good form me, twice the budget and there is the third band that goes on the head…
        So the HR1 will be the choice?^ also vs the NU25?
        I’m searching for a light, compact, long battery (evening to morning) and good light…
        I was using a Caperlan ONNIGHT 100UV headlamp with 100 lumens (declared) and 3 AAA battery, and more time passed less light from the lamp,,,

  3. Hi zeroair, I’m fairly new to headlamps and after reading this review, I decided that the HR1 Plus was the headlamp for me (my criteria were rechargeable, bright and lightweight). My expectation was that I could set this on the highest level (600LM – more than adequate for my forest night running) and that it would stay this bright for 4 hours – even a couple of hours would be OK. However, I found that after about 20-40 minutes, the lumens starting dropping to what I reckon was less than 100 LM and after that I needed to press the larger button every 3-4 minutes to return it to the maximum brightness. Did you experience the same, or did yours stay at 600LM for the 4 hours? Thanks in advance.

    1. The runtime above demonstrates that the output drops from >600 lumens at around 1.5 minutes.

      1. I’m having some weird behavior on mine too. I expected the step down, but mine is stepping down all the way from 600 down to below medium, maybe like 75 lumens, within a couple of minutes from high. Maybe because your runtime is cooled it’s staying at 300 after step down? I understand why you stick with cooled runtime for consistency, but perhaps in this case that inadvertently covered up further step down? Thank you for all you do, your reviews are invaluable to me.

        1. Mine is acting the same.
          Contacted support and got a reply that High mode is only supposed to continuously work for 2 minutes.
          Weirdly when running from power bank it slowly steps down to something similar to Medium (about 200lm), but when running from PP20 it just switches to Low (75lm) after 2-3 minutes.

          I even tried cooling it with an ice pack but it still switches to Low. I’m quite disappointed with performance.

    2. Izzie Roberts

      Re the drop for 600lm after 2 mins, to supposedly 250lm, does anyone know if the 400 does the same?
      I can’t find anything about there being a drop in the 400lm so would it possibly be better for the duration than the 600 maintaining a higher output?

  4. One crappy thing about HR1 Plus: it does not work with USB-C chargers. Tried with my Macbook 65W, iPad, Anker Nano 20W USB-C chargers – none charge it, only way to charge it is to bring USB-A to USB-C Klarus cable and use USB-A charger. I specifically chose HR1 Plus over HR1 Pro to avoid carrying additional cables – I am really really disappointed. What is the point of having USB-C input when you cannot use USB-C charger, Klarus?
    Oh well, next time I will stick with other companies.

    1. This is an important bit of information. Thanks! Sorry it didn’t work out for you.

  5. I found with the HR1 Pro 400 that when you remove the rechargeable battery to insert 3 x AAA batteries that the top terminal is bent and does not make contact with the battery,,, and I’ve tried to contact Klarus in numerous ways and yet to receive a reply??

  6. Klarus have just told me to buy another B33A battery in the UK. I need to carry a spare, and I can’t fit 3 x AAA’s in this faulty unit, yet nobody in the UK has stock, I’m very disappointed with Klarus, they don’t seem to give a buggery that there’s a fault or design issue with the HR1 400 Pro, and they won’t even send me a spare battery to resolve the issue,,, poor show Klarus, this will get a terrible review in my wild camping blogs and be on YouTube…

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