Fenix HM65R-T v2

1lumen selects and reviews products personally. We may earn affiliate commissions through our links, which help support our testing.

Fenix HM65R-T v2.0 review

Fenix HM65R-T v2.0 specifications

Brand/modelFenix HM65R-T v2.0
Flashlight categoryHeadlamp
LEDLuminus SST40 (cw), Osram GW PUSTA1.PM (ww)
Max. output1,600 Lumens
Max. beam distance170 meters
Max. beam intensity7,353 cd
Battery config.1*18650
Onboard chargingUSB-C
ModesCool white: 3, Warm white: 4
Review dateApril 2024

Review intro:

Fenix is a well-known player in the world of flashlights. They have various lighting products, including headlamps, flashlights, and lanterns.

Today, we are looking at a dual-LED headlamp, the Fenix HM65R T v2, which offers cool white and warm white in one headlamp. Each LED has its own dedicated switch and UI. Pretty cool!

But is it a good performer, and will the dual switch and dual UI be easy to use?

Let’s find out.

Package quality.

The packaging for the Fenix HM65R T v2 is instantly recognizable by its colors and design. It’s a plastic box, with a clear window on the front to show off the headlamp. Since it’s available with 3 unique colors, you can easily make sure you got the correct one.

This is what you find inside:

  • Fenix HM65R-T v2
  • 18650 battery (pre-installed)
  • Adjustable headband
  • Charging cable
  • Spare o-ring
  • Manual and warranty card

Before your first use, remove the plastic insulator from the tailcap.

Flashlight in use, Build Quality, and Warranty

There are a few different designs for headlamps, with the two main ones being L-shaped (right angle) and T-shaped. L-shaped lights can be pretty nice since they do dual duty as both a headlight and a handheld or utility light. But as a dedicated headlamp, some people don’t like the L-shaped, as the light is offset to the side and may feel a bit unnatural, especially for up-close tasks. The HM65R-T v2 is one with the T-shaped style. This feels good, as the light feels well-balanced.

The one I am reviewing is the Nebula version, which is a duotone, combining purple and pink-ish. But there is also a normal black version and a Purple version.

Fenix mentions that it’s constructed of quality aluminum, magnesium, and PC (polycarbonate).

It comes with the headband pre-installed. And while you could potentially take it off, I see no reason to do so. The strap itself is pretty nice and easily adjustable by twisting the round knob located on the side. The straps connect to a wide plastic bracket that keeps it from putting too much pressure on your forehead from the bracket. This bracket includes a protective shroud/guard located just above the switches when the lamp is in the default position. This prevents any accidental activation. Overall, the Fenix HM65R-T v2.0 is relatively comfortable to wear.

A headlamp like this Fenix is great for all kinds of things: working around the house/garage/yard, hiking in the evening, hunting/fishing, etc. However, it’s still an 18650-type headlamp, without a third strap on top of your head, so it’s not really meant for jogging, in my opinion.  

The headlamp features an adjustable beam angle, directing the light forward or downwards in incremental steps, from straight ahead to nearly 90 degrees downward.

And the multiple lighting modes make it an excellent fit for many situations. Unlike the Fenix HM60R, which Gabriel reviewed, the HM60R Tv2 does not have a spotlight or floodlight. Instead, it just differentiates between a cold white and a warm white LED.

You get 2 switches to operate the 2 LEDs independently.. Note: you can’t mix them.. so you either get cold or warm white. In the standard, forward-pointing position, you have the shroud protecting the switches, which makes it more difficult to use. You have to adjust the position before you can use the switches. For now, I don’t really like that, and I’m not sure if I would get used to it.

Fenix Warranty:

  • 15 days from date of purchase: replacement from Fenix for manufacturing defects
  • 5 year from date of purchase: free repairs
  • Lifetime maintenance, with customer covering the cost of parts
  • Extra 6-month warranty period for products registered on Fenix’s website

LED, Lens, Bezel, Beam, and Reflector

There are two separate optic lenses: one for the cool white LED, and another for the warm white LED. Both look very similar, unlike the HM60R. The cool white LED is a Luminus SST40, while the warm white LED is an Osram GW PUSTA1.PM, which I don’t know much about.

Both have similar beam patterns, with some kind of hotspot, and a nice transition to spill. Just like I enjoy with EDC flashlights. To me, a smooth and good beam is more important than high CRI, or high output, especially for this type of light. You don’t want a harsh transition between hotspot and spill, and the beam shouldn’t be too throwy, either.

Of course, I also tested the beam quality with my spectrometer.

Spectral measurements:  

I used a Sekonic C800 spectrometer to measure the flashlight at 5 5-meter distance. I measured both LEDs in the highest mode.

Mode:CCT:CRI Ra:duvTM30 RfTM30 Rg
CW High6341K660.00166596
WW High

Dimensions and its competition


Fenix HM65R-T v2.0MillimetersInches
Headlamp unit thickness25 mm1 in
Headlamp unit width79 mm3.1in
Headlamp unit height41 mm1.6 in

Dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter and the nearest tenth of an Inch.


Fenix HM65R-T v2.0Weight in gramsWeight in oz.
Set without battery:93 g3.3 oz
With battery143 g5 oz

Weight is rounded to the nearest gram and tenth of an Oz.

Fenix HM65R-T v2.0 headlamp comparison

Size compared to other great headlamps.

Group 1, from left to right: Fenix HM50R v2, Fenix HM65R-T v2.0, Nitecore HC65, Nitecore UT27

Fenix HM65R-T v2 UI : User interface and driver

Both LEDs are using their own switch and UI. The warm white UI has 1 additional mode, Eco mode. If there was a need for only 1 Eco mode, I would agree the warm white was the best choice. However, it could also be added to the cold white.. to make the UI easier to understand.

The available main modes:

  • Cold white: Low, Medium, High
  • Warm white: Eco, Low, Medium, High

The available special modes (blinkies):

  • SOS (Warm white only)

How the UI works when the flashlight is still turned OFF:

  • Single-click: battery level indicator
  • 2+ clicks: nothing
  • Press and hold 1 sec: turn the light on in lowest mode (Eco with Warm White, Low with Cold White)
  • Press and hold 2 sec: SOS (you can press either of the 2 switches, and SOS is only with warm white. But SOS is very weak.. so I don’t know how useful this is?

How the UI works when the flashlight is turned ON:

  • Single clicks: Cycle through the menu from lowest to highest
  • Multiple clicks: nothing, just running through the different modes
  • Press and hold: turn off

Shortcuts within the UI:

  • None.. no mode memory, always starts in the lowest available mode
  • To SOS: press-and-hold either switch for about 2 seconds to activate SOS

Mode memory:

  • No.. always start in the lowest output

Blinky modes:

  • SOS mode: press and hold either switch for 2 seconds to activate SOS mode.
  • SOS mode is only Low output, Warm White..
  • I don’t know how useful an SOS mode is with so low output….

Low battery warning:

  • The battery level indicator blinks.. but almost pointless because you can’t see it, as it is located on top of the headlamp :–), and with low output, you might not notice a low battery level.

Lock-out mode:

  • Press and hold both switches simultaneously


  • Not visible

Firmware / UI Conclusion:

  • It’s very easy to understand and get used to. I’m not a big fan of the press and hold for on, and press and hold for off. But that’s just personal.
  • I’m not sure how useful the SOS mode is, but I like the fact that it can run for 600 hours (according to specs)
  • A shortcut to turbo would have been nice. Switching from Warm white to Cold white will always go to the lowest mode.
  • There is no shortcut to any mode, except SOS, and the lowest mode

Fenix HM65R-T v2 Charging and batteries

Fenix included a 18650 battery (without USB charging port), and is labeled ARB-L18-3400, which is a 3400mAh capacity battery. You can charge the flashlight in a dedicated battery charger or inside the flashlight with the included USB-C charging cable.

I tested the full charging time 3 times, and they were 2h 44min, 2h 45min, 2h 46min respectively. So the average charge time is 2h 45 min. The end voltage is 4.18V.

The headlamp unit has 2 tailcap; you should use the one with the arrow to remove and insert the battery. The other tailcap can also be removed but you shouldn’t. This is probably only done to remove the unit from the headstrap.

Also, it’s probably recommended to charge the battery inside the headlamp because unscrewing the tailcap is not very easy. Because of the bracket it’s positioned in, there is not so much space, so you can’t make full turns. You have to do multiple quarter-turns to unscrew the cap.

The included battery is a button-top, and I tested to see which batteries would also fit. Flat-top batteries do not work because they have physical reverse polarity protection. You need to use button-top batteries, either protected or unprotected.

However, it’s important to note that Fenix does not have a built-in low voltage protection. They rely on the protection board inside the battery. Make sure you charge the battery when you notice it’s getting low. If you don’t, you might discharge your unprotected batteries to below-safe levels.

Charge typeFitsNo fitCharge time
Flashlight with onboard USB-CButton topsFlat tops2h 45min

Performance test

This is the gear I use for testing:

GearPurposeLink to buy
Hagner E4-XMeasuring beam intensity (throw)Inquire at Hagner.se
2* Extech SDL400Lumens and logging runtimesAmazon.com, Amazon.co.uk,
Leica Disto D2Distance for throw measurementsAmazon.com, Amazon.co.uk,
Sekonic C-800 Spectrometer for LED measurementsAmazon.com, Amazon.co.uk
Uni-T UTi260BThermal Image cameraAmazon.com,

Lumen measurements:

How Lumens are Measured: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards How Lumens are Measured: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards: The ANSI FL1 standards specify that output in lumens should be measured 30 seconds after turning on, as this is the standardized time for measuring brightness according to the industry standard. This is why we focus on this part in our measurements. The ANSI FL1 standards require an ambient temperature of 22 ± 3°C. We record the ambient the ambient temperature to identify potential reasons for any observed discrepancies.

The output measurements in this review are based on my homemade integrating spheres, each equipped with an Extech SDL400 Lux Meter. For consistency and accuracy, a calibration light (Convoy S2+ with 249lm and a Convoy S2+ with 261lm) is measured before each set of lumen measurements.
One of the lux meters uses an ND camera filter for high-output lights to prevent the lux meter from maxing out. This is either the Kenko PRO1D ND16 for up to about 80,000 lumens or the Gobe ND32 for anything above.

All of my readings were taken from a fully charged Fenix ARB-L18-3400.

The measurements were taken manually at turn on and 30-seconds. The 10-minute numbers are taken from the runtime graph.

ModeSpecifiedturn on30 sec10 min
Eco (ww)5 lm6 lm6 lm
Low (ww)130 lm139 lm140 lm141 lm
Med (ww)400 lm428 lm426 lm423 lm
High (ww)800 lm888 lm875 lm293 lm
ModeSpecifiedturn on30 sec10 min
Low (cw)130 lm129 lm129 lm129 lm
Med (cw)400 lm402 lm402 lm398 lm
High (cw)1600 lm1723 lm1590 lm530 lm

I try to use rounded lumen numbers only, except for maybe some Low or Moon/Firefly modes.

Parasitic drain:

  • 22.4 µA (pretty low, and would take several years to discharge the battery.)

Ambient temperature during testing:

  • 20.5°C

Fenix HM65R-T v2.0 Battery life and runtime

How Runtimes are Measured: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards About ANSI FL1 runtime standards: The runtime is measured until the light drops to 10% of its initial output (30 seconds after turning on). This does not mean that the flashlight is not usable anymore. The last column shows how long the light actually works till it shuts off. If there is a + symbol, it means that the test was stopped at that particular point, but the light was actually still running. This happens on certain occasions, with certain drivers, firmware, or batteries.

Runtime tests were conducted in my 50cm homemade integrating sphere, paired with the Extech SDL400 data logging Lux Meter. Temperatures from the moment the runtime test started.

ModeSpecifiedRuntime (ANSI FL1)Time till shut off
Low cw (14.2°C)24h23h 32min26h 35min
Med cw (21.2°C)12h12h 07min15h 51min
High cw (21.5°C)3h2h 55min7h 12min
Eco ww300h
Low ww (17.1°C)24h21h 57min35h 24min
Med ww (19.6°C)12h10h 36min25h 03min
High ww (17.3°C)6h5h 55min19h 39min

After the battery reaches 10% (ANSI FL1 standards), the flashlight continues running for several more hours! It’s good to know this is how the Fenix works. You don’t have to be afraid you have no light anymore.

Fenix HM65R-T v2 Peak beam intensity and beam distance measurements

About Peak beam intensity: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards About peak beam intensity The calculated value of distance in meters at which the flashlight produces a light intensity of 0.25 lux. (0.25 lux is about the brightness of a full moon shining on an object). This means that the intensity has decreased so much, it becomes difficult to see darker objects, or objects that don’t reflect light. The columns ‘Meters’ and ‘Yards’ use rounded numbers.

Measurements were taken indoors with a Hagner E4-X Lux Meter. The measurements were taken 30 seconds after turn on.

ModeSpecifiedCandela measuredMetersYards
Warm Eco26 cd25 cd10 m11 yd
Warm Low577 cd700 cd53 m58 yd
Warm Med1,690 cd2,150 cd93 m101 yd
Warm High3,155 cd4,450 cd133 m146 yd
Cold Low604 cd675 cd52 m57 yd
Cold Med1,715 cd2,150 cd93 m101 yd
Cold High7,353 cd8,525 cd185 m202 yd

It’s again no surprise my measurements are a little higher than specified. That’s very common for Fenix.

Ambient temperature during testing:

  • 18.9 °C


For the following beamshots, I used a Canon EOS 5D Mk2 with a 50mm lens. Manual settings: ISO1600, 1/4sec, F4, 5000K.

The shed is about 65 meters / 71 yards away, and the reflective fence is about 200 meters.

Explore and compare the beamshots from the following flashlights:

  • Fenix HM65R-T v2.0
  • Fenix HM50
  • Nitecore UT27
  • Nitecore HC65 v2

Please note that the following beamshots are mainly intended to showcase the beam pattern and beam quality, rather than overall performance. These images are typically taken directly after activation, and in different seasons or weather conditions, and therefore do not fully represent its overall performance. For accurate performance metrics, such as output, beam distance, and runtimes, you need to look at the performance section of this review.

Disclaimer: This flashlight was sent to us for review at no cost by Fenix. We have not been paid to review, nor have we been holding back on problems or defects.

Final Verdict


  1. Very lightweight
  2. Cool white and warm white beams
  3. Nice beam profile with a good mix of flood and throw
  4. Built-in USB-C charging (which takes 2h 45min)
  5. Includes 3400mAh 18650 battery
  6. Long runtimes. Continues running at low levels after it reaches the runtime specs


  1. Low voltage warning is not noticeable (but you can see the output drop, which makes this clear anyhow)
  2. Shroud on top of switches blocks access to switches in standard, forward position. Need to get used to.. but so far I don’t like it
  3. Not easy to unscrew the tailcap to remove the battery (but this is not necessary because you can charge the battery inside the headlamp)
  4. No shortcuts. It always starts in the lowest output mode.. also when switching LEDs. (this can also be a pro)
  5. I am unsure if built-in SOS is useful with the low output. But it will be available for 600 hours, according to Fenix.. which is pretty cool
  6. Bumps on the forehead if you run (this is not meant for jogging, in my opinion)

Explanation on star ratings:

1: Avoid: my phone flashlight would be a better choice – 2: Poor: significant defect or issues; almost unusable – 3: Average: some defects or issues; but still usable 4: Good: recommended (minor issues) – 5: Great: highly recommended

Reviewer Marco
Author: Marco

4 stars: ★★★★

While our star rating provides a reliable indicator, we encourage you to read the full review to make an informed decision based on your own needs and preferences.

Scoring flashlights (and headlamps) is always a bit tricky because the criteria differ per use case and the specifications.

Let’s start with some cons. The shroud/roof covering the switches can be a pro and a con. I don’t like it since you must tilt the headlamp unit forward before reaching the switches. I know this is likely done to protect it from accidental activation, but you could also do a lockout and be done with that. I also dislike how hard it is to remove the tailcap.

The headlamp starts in the lowest mode, including switching between the 2 LEDs. You could go from 1600 lumens cold white to 5 lumens warm white. That’s quite a change.

This headlamp is ideal for hiking, camping, and working on cars, but not for jogging or running. The brightness may also be insufficient for cycling as your main light, depending on the environment.

But to sum up the pros and cons, you basically get a nice-performing headlamp with long runtimes, especially if you prefer to charge the battery inside the headlamp.

Buy your Fenix HM65R-T v2 with a discount

Get 10% off every purchase at Fenix Lighting US, by using our exclusive 1lumen discount code: 1lumen10

1lumen selects and reviews products personally. We may earn affiliate commissions through our links, which help support our testing.