Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 Review (Bought & Tested!)

This is my Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern review. I put it through many different tests, all of which you’ll find below in this post.

Quick Summary

The Lighthouse 600 is the best Goal Zero lantern I’ve used so far, loaded with tons of features that other Goal Zero lanterns don’t have. If you’re a fan of Goal Zero, and need a lantern for emergency use, this is a great pick.

1. In the Box

I bought my Lighthouse 600 lantern USB power hub from Moosejaw about a year ago, and here’s what I got out of the box:

  • Lighthouse 600

  • User guide

That’s all.

The author unboxing the Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern
The user guide is on the left, and the lantern’s on the right.

Take note that the Lighthouse 600 comes in demo mode. To take it out of demo mode, quickly turn the hand crank three times, enough for the blue battery indicator to illuminate.

2. Handle

The Lighthouse 600 has a thin wire handle that’s removable, and allows me to hang this lantern almost anywhere.

The Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern hanging from a metal railing
The detachable handle is what made it possible to hang the Lighthouse 600 from this railing.

3. Hand Crank

This lantern also has a dynamo hand crank at the top. You can rotate the hand crank clockwise, or counter-clockwise, it doesn’t matter which way you go.

The hand crank of the Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern
The green thing sticking out is the hand crank.

Supposedly, 1 minute of cranking (120 rounds per minute) can get 10 minutes of light on low power.

However, mine didn’t work at all. All the cranking in the world didn’t get me any power at all. I’m still waiting for another one to come in so I can re-test this.

4. Charging Cable

The Lighthouse 600 has a pre-attached cable that loops around the lantern, and the full length of it comes up to slightly under 9 inches. I honestly thought that this was a little bit short for such a big lantern.

5. Charging Time

When this lantern needs to be charged, just plug the pre-attached cable into any USB port or socket. When you do so, one of the battery indicator lights will start blinking, then two, three, and four.

When all lights are not blinking at all, that means the lantern is fully charged. Mine took 6.5 hours to charge.

If you use a Goal Zero solar panel instead, that will take longer.

6. Adjustable Light and Knob

All the instructions are on the lantern itself. If you turn the light adjustment knob to the left, this will light up only the front half of the lantern.

The adjustment knob of the Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern
A close-up of the adjustment knob.

And if you turn it to the right, the full lantern will light up, so both halves of the lantern.

The knob turns almost 180-degrees either way, which is why it’s so easy to control the brightness and achieve a bright light when needed.

7. Lumen Output

Goal Zero says that the maximum lumen output is 600 lumens, providing a bright light, hence the name – Lighthouse 600 lantern.

But here’s my tested results instead when I used my own lux meter:

  • Maximum brightness (full lantern): 985 lumens

  • Minimum brightness (half lantern): 2 lumens

8. Run Times

How long can this lantern last on the different light modes?

  • Run time on brightest mode (full lantern): 3 hours

  • Run time on dimmest mode (half lantern): 355 hours

I really quite liked the long lasting lithium battery, I thought it gave me very decent battery life.

9. Shine Radius

Using the same lux meter, the shine radius of this Lighthouse 600 on the brightest setting came in at a whopping 13.3 feet, or 4.05 meters, in every direction, which can easily light up a tent that’s as big as almost 30-people. This is basically a small campsite.

The Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern at its brightest, on the full lantern.
The Lighthouse 600 at its brightest (full lantern).

10. Light Quality

The light color of this Lighthouse 600 lantern is 3,200 Kelvin (on the warmer side).

I love warm lights, but the globe of the lantern isn’t frosted enough, and it felt too glaring at times on the brighter settings.

11. Emergency Lighting

To turn on this Lighthouse 600’s emergency lights, press on the red triangle button on the bottom of the lantern. The top of the lantern will start blinking.

The red emergency lights of the Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern
The red emergency lights are on.

This isn’t the most attention grabbing from far away, but it’s better than nothing I suppose.

12. Battery Life Indicator

The battery life or battery level indicator is right above the emergency button. I found these indicator lights quite accurate in most tests, except for the run time on the dimmest setting test.

The battery indicator lights of the Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern
A close-up of the battery level lights. 3 of 4 of them are lighted up.

13. Charging Out

Another feature of the Lighthouse 600 is the regulated USB port. This lantern has a 5-volt 1.5-Ampere output, used for charging small USB devices like phones. The capacity of this lantern is 5,200 milliampere-hour.

Here are my testing results when I charged my iPhone:

  • Day 1: 82% charge in 2.25 hours

  • Day 2: 42% charge in 1 hour

  • Total: 124% charge

  • Leftover light: None

14. Fold Down Legs

This Lighthouse 600 also has fold-down legs, which gives you 2 extra benefits:

  • Propping the lantern up to get more light; and

  • Balancing the Lighthouse on a slope.

The Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern balancing on a slope
The Lighthouse 600 on a slope.

15. Durability

As for waterproofing, this Lighthouse 600 doesn’t have an IPX rating, and that’s because pre-attached USB cable and USB port are fully exposed to the elements.

I also dropped it from hand height, and it worked fine. Nothing broke, not even the outer hard-plastic globe. (I thought it would from the weight, so I’m pleasantly surprised).

And Goal Zero gives a warranty of 2 years on this lantern.

16. Portability

It has packed dimensions of 4.75 inch, by 4.25 inch, by 6.25 inch. That’s about 12.1 by 10.8 by 15.9 centimeters.

The author measuring the packed size of the Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern
Me measuring the packed size of the Lighthouse 600.

And it weighs about 19.75 ounces, which is about 560 grams.

Pros, Cons, Recommendations

Pro 1: Very feature-rich

For pros, I think this Lighthouse 600 lantern is one heck of a feature-rich lantern. It’s my only Goal Zero lantern to have a hand crank at the top, it’s my only Goal Zero lantern to have the red emergency lights, and it’s also one of the few Goal Zero lanterns with collapsible legs, and stable ones at that.

The Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern beside the Lighthouse Core and Lighthouse Mini Core.
From left to right: Goal Zero Lighthouse 600, Lighthouse Core, Lighthouse Mini.

Additionally, the battery capacity of this lantern ensures long-lasting performance.

Pro 2: Great light adjustment

The light adjustment on this lantern is amazing.

It goes from a mere 2 lumens, which is great as a nightlight, all the way to almost a whopping 1,000 lumens, which is an insane range of brightness. Additionally, the lantern features a USB power output, allowing you to charge your devices on the go.

The Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern at its dimmest setting
The Lighthouse 600 at its dimmest (full lantern).

The light adjustment knob is also great and gives you a large range of motion, turning almost 180-degrees in both directions.

Pro 3: Super bright

Speaking of which, I was very pleasantly surprised that the highest lumen output came in at not 600 lumens, but 985 lumens, which is insane.

To be honest though, unless you need to light up a campsite, you don’t need such a high lumen output. However, this high brightness can be extremely useful in emergency situations.

Pro 4: Directional lighting

I also think that the multi-directional lighting feature is such an ingenious idea to help conserve battery, especially if you want to use it on high power. The lantern offers different light modes, including full lantern and half lantern, which can be adjusted to either the brightest or dimmest settings. Here’s roughly what you can expect:

  • Brightest mode (full lantern): 3 hours

  • Brightest mode (half lantern): 5.5 hours

  • Dimmest mode (full lantern): < 200 hours

  • Dimmest mode (half lantern): 355 hours

The Goal Zero Lighthouse 600 lantern on its brightest setting, but on half the lantern
The Lighthouse 600 at its brightest (half lantern). You can tell from the shadows on the ground.

Pro 5: Incredible shine radius

And of all my rechargeable lanterns, this Lighthouse 600 has the largest shine area, and can easily light up any size tent you may have while car camping. Additionally, it functions as a power bank, allowing you to charge your devices on the go.

Con 1: Hand crank not working

However, here’s where we get into the cons. The hand crank not working was something that really disappointed me, because it’s such a unique feature I wanted to test out.

Con 2: Hand crank not the most efficient

You also have to rotate it pretty quickly at 120 rounds per minute, and I’m not very strong, so I can’t sustain long periods of cranking. A couple minutes in and I’m feeling pretty tired.

So, for myself, a better source of light is to get battery operated lanterns instead, and to stock up on external batteries. It’s just a lot easier to get light this way.

Con 3: Heavy and bigger

Also, this is a pretty heavy lantern, and it’s also my biggest rechargeable lantern in terms of packed size.

Con 4: Not waterproof

It’s also not waterproof, and doesn’t have an IPX rating. If you put this through the rain, water will get into the lantern and not be able to get out.

Con 5: Expensive

Another con is that this lantern is definitely on the pricier side when it comes to other rechargeable lanterns. When I bought this to use back in 2023, the full price when I paid for this was about $70.

Con 6: Can be more frosted

And a smaller con is that the inner globe can be more frosted so it won’t be so glaring.

Overall Thoughts

Overall, the biggest con of the hand crank aside, I thought that this was one of the better Goal Zero lanterns that I have. It’s perfect for camping outdoor, for other outdoor events or emergency use.

I will definitely find out from them if I can get a replacement for one where the hand crank works, so I can keep on using this for my camping trips.

Are there better rechargeable lanterns on the market that don’t come from Goal Zero though? How does this Lighthouse compare to those other brands, and will I still recommend this? To find out, check out the blog post here in this paragraph.

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