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Discussion in 'Flashlights & Other Illumination Devices' started by able_man, Sep 7, 2011.
Excellent insights about lights on this thread. I am always learning...
Fair enough, most of them are outside of my price range too. The ones I purchased are $115 and $65, 6PX Pro and 6P.
Understand that if you purchase a Fenix, it'll be a great light up until the day it dies. I loved my Fenix LD20, and wouldn't mind another, however it would be used as a dog-walking light or something to use lightly.
You will be happy with a 4Sevens/Quark/Fenix, as long as you understand they are not infalliable.
That might contrast with a Surefire (I dont like Surefire that much really, old emitters and overpriced) which is as indestructable as flashlights come.
Went to a Cumpleaños tonight and forgot my bag. I found an Ld10 in the car and got a new battery from the host. I had the best light there by far.
After doing a little more research I did find some Surefire light on closeout that fall into the price range I'm looking for. The thing about the one's I found was they all run on the 123s and I'd like to stick to AAs. I will pay more attention to them though. It always seemed like you couldn't find one for under $100 when I'd looked before.
I found a Quark AA Tactical at a good discount and pulled the trigger. I'll still probably end up getting a Zebralight or LumaPower (Gnarly is a bad influence for telling me about that site) when my birthday rolls around in a month.
Hope you enjoy your light
It's kind of all trial and error for us anyway isn't it? If I hadn't found it on sale I might have kept researching, but I had to jump on it and try it out. I never thought I'd start leaning towards the flashoholic side but I'm sure it's just the start of a new obsession that I can't afford. And there's always Christmas for asking for a Surefire!
Tod is a stand-up guy, and he'll do you right with any purchase you make from him. My SC60w was bought from illumination gear recently.
Over on CPF there's a loud but small contingent of Zebra detractors, because they have had some QC issues with their older lights, before they introduced the new SC and H series lights. Those people seem to refuse to acknowledge the vast majority of those problems were with their older models, and still bellow vehemently that ZL's are crap. Significant problems or defects with the newer models are very rare from what I've seen from the various posts about ZL's on CPF, and I've never had an issue with any of mine.
Mind you, while I have put mine through some rough treatment, I also do make sure to take good care of them as much as possible as well. I live by the old mountaineering adage that your safety depends on your gear, so if you take good care of your gear, your gear will take good care of you. I certainly don't let my daughter play with any of my expensive lights anymore, after the incident with the dog dish! LOL! I now also make sure I empty my pockets every night when I go to bed too, so I don't end up leaving anything in them like I have accidentally done in the past. With a few simple care rules, any light you buy should last you a good long time.
I agree - don't be afraid of the newer Zebralights. I've had nothing but good experiences with the three I have purchased so far: one SC50w+ flashlight and two H501w+ headlamps.
The SC50w+ is currently my favorite flashlight. It's not as compact as the MiNi AA, but I like it enought that I still usually find a reason to justify (to myself) carrying it. The UI is awesome, though, I usually do loosen the tailcap before sticking it in my pocket. Sometimes I carry it on my belt, which is easy to do due to its "typical-123-light" form factor. I think my next ZL woill likely be the H51w+ headlamp.
I believe my criticism of my Zebralight H501 is fair, because it's honest.
Perhaps I got a lemon, but why does my H501 not turn on when I press the button? Assuming I have a fresh L91 and the cap is fully tightened and I keep the o-ring lubed.
Why do I have to smack it several times for it to turn on?
What is so complicated about the ZL H501 that it should be faulty after 1 year of use?
Why do I never have the same problem with Surefire or HDS (2 Surefires, both fine), (1 HDS, fine)?
Why do I have QC issues with 4Sevens (1 faulty light, of two), Fenix (2 dead lights, of three), and ZL (1 faulty light, of one)?
Should I have QC issues on lights that I payed $55 for (LD05), $70 for (LD20), $75 for (Preon 2), $80 for (H501)???
Is that to be expected, and the price for a light with no QC issues is $65 (6P), $115 (6PX Pro), $200 (Rotary 200)?
I don't mind Fenix/4Sevens, but paying ~$70 for something that is going to give out after 1 year or so is just a sin. I would rather pay $200 for a light that isn't going to bite the dust before I do.
Heck, even my $8 Energizer 9LED flashlight from the supermarket has outlasted my Fenix/4Sevens.
Am I being unfairly critical?
I have the Fenix LD10 and really like the light, but when I bought the ZebraLight SC51w the LD10 is now resting from my EDC. The UI, size and the beam color blows the LD10 out of the water. I find the UI more user friendly than the LD10 (starts on high whuch I use most often) (no more twisting of the head to get to modes). The size is not much bigger than my Maratac Copper AAA. The warm or neutral color is great, no more blue tint like the LD10. It is well worth the extra $15 over the LD10.
I own a 4/7s MiniAA, a Fenix LT1, a Nitecore D10, and a ZL51w. The all have their pros and cons. I like AA flashlights because I can get batteries anywhere and I have a bunch of eneloops that also go in the kids game controllers.
The Mini AA disappears in my pocket and is easy to use.
The LT1 was my first foray in better lights. I've had it for three years and it has survived numerous camping trips and my kids. It is still going strong.
The D10 had a beautiful UI
The ZL51w, I can't say enough. Tough, bright, small, great clip and great UI
The Mini just isn't bright enough. Great for 90% but.... I wanted more
The LT1 is just too big to comfortably pocket carry, doesn't have a high enough high or low enough low.
The D10 died after 6 months.
The ZL51w looks weird and needs more texture
I like them all but only EDC the ZL51w. THE ZL is small enough to fit in the watch pocket of my jeans, bright enough to let me work in a pitch black warehouse, and has a low enough low to not wreck my nigh vision.
You could try one of Battery Junction's CRAA 3.0V cells - it won't overdrive the circuit like a Li-ion, but you'll get the same performance as you would from a CR123.
I really like my LD20, it has been in my EDC pack for almost a year now. Great light for the price. It's a little large IMO for Pocket carry tho, which is where my LD10 lives. I also have a TK12 on my HD shotgun. I love the UI, fit and finish, and have had absolutely no problems with any of them.
Until I have an issue with any of the lights (none at all so far), I am a Fenix fan.
I received my Quark AA in the mail today. (Thank you Amazon Prime) I bought a used-like-new one so it didn't come with any of the usual extra stuff. My first impressions of the this thing are very good. I like the size, it's well made and solid, and I like the UI.
I like that you have 8 potential modes, but the ability to just set it to 2 you can easily access. The super low light moonlight setting is a pretty cool option.
I have to admit that this is probably going to lead to a problem. I imagine I am going to end up collecting flashlights now and not just knives.
What I like is being able to buy a spare body for the Quark lights and switch to different battery options. I just got the single AA body for the 2 AA Quark that I now have the option to use a single AA battery on this light. I should have also added the deep pocket carry clip when ordering the body.
It seems to me that your experiences are with too small of a sample to really be representative of what ZL's and Quarks are like quality-wise. Also, you do have one of the older models, which ARE more problematic than the newer ones, or you might just be being really hard on your lights. It's easy to make over-generalizations based on our personal experiences, believe me, I know; I teach science courses at the college/university level, and we just don't think in a scientific or statistical fashion that takes the bigger, more objective picture into account in our thinking. I see students struggling with learning how to think scientifically all the time.
I've got three of the newer model Zebras, and four Quarks, and never had so much as a single issue. If you're concerned about getting quality CS with your purchase, buy from Illumination Gear, or from Going Gear; Marshall at GG is another great seller with excellent CS; if you have a problem with any light you buy from him, he'll take it back and either exchange it or refund the price for you, and deal with the warranty/return issues with the manufacturer himself. He's posted over at CPF a couple of times now that he sells dozens of Zebras every month and has a return rate of less than 1%. And of the ones that do come back, he's said that most only need a good cleaning with de-oxit and a re-lubing with Nyogel, and they're good to go.
Beeing af bit of a Fenix fan, I’ll recommend you two alternatives, I use regularly:
PD31 @ 304 lumens - A little bigger, but the difference will blow you out of the water.
LD01 R5 @ 72 lumens - As small as they get, only a bit dimmer, but you can fit it in everywhere.
Isn't it wonderful to choose from so many flashlights. :laugh:
I have both the Fenix LD10 and the Quark AA. The LD10 is actually a bit "thinner" than the Quark, but it has fewer operating modes (most useful the moonlight mode). Apart from that, they both work practically Identical and their outputs are very similar. Honestly the only complaint I'd have from either flashlight is for the Quark. The pouch/belt attachment is attrocious. It doesn't quite fit the flashlight right, at all. The Fenix pouch is soo much better, and it even has molle/webbing attachment options.
The Extreme Fenix TK40 Torture Test.
I wouldn't try this at home. :crackup: