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I am done with AAA (and AA).

Discussion in 'Flashlights & Other Illumination Devices' started by el_murdoque, Jan 25, 2019.

  1. Kris69

    Kris69 Loaded Pockets

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    Soooo, to sum this up is like following:
    better to have any kind of light in dark than not and YMMV :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:
     
  2. JJ4

    JJ4 Empty Pockets

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    For EDC, I see no reason to carry a low voltage AA or AAA when higher voltage and higher capacity rechargeable options exist, are relatively affordable and aren't much larger at all. That said, I'm actually not a big fan of USB rechargeable flashlights for myself because whatever charger the manufacturer built into the flashlight is potentially questionable in quality, non-replaceable in case it bonks in the future, and it introduces a non-waterproof charging port and a merely water resistant (ideally waterproof, but not always and it might get bumped open accidentally) rubber flap to the system. With an external charger, you can shop for quality, features and keep an eye on it as it ages to watch for any signs that it needs to be replaced. I admit that built-in chargers are great for giving flashlights as gifts, though.

    For backpacking and camping, I am having trouble letting go of the "gas station availability" advantage of AA batteries. Although I very rarely go on such a long backpacking trip that I'd need to hitch-hike to a gas station to resupply on consumables, I have been away from AC power sources for extended periods of time, staying at a car campground a few nights, then going on a backpacking trip for a few nights, then back to a car campground, then an overnight rafting trip sort of thing. I think that an 18650 flashlight used judiciously on the lower settings and carrying an extra battery in my backpack should be enough power to last me a long, long time on the trail, but I am still making up my mind. It might be nice if there were some quality 21700 headlamp options to choose from.
     
  3. FiaOlleDog

    FiaOlleDog Loaded Pockets

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    @JJ4 Interesting to see how different opinions and experience can be - which is IMHO a good thing as we can learn from each other, but we don't need to convince each other.

    I'm EDC keyring-carrying an AAA flashlight (Eneloop) mostly for two reasons:
    1. pocket-size and
    2. replenish-able power source

    I do constantly evaluate other small-sized flashlights but stick to my Ti3, because of
    1. size: AA and C(R)123 are a little bit to thick compared to the AAA format while tiny ones like the Olight I1R EOS are too small for my hands
    2. power source: USB chargeable with built-in batteries (like NiteCore Tube) are similar or even smaller in size but are not environment friendly once the battery dies; and most of them don't work while being charged
    Considering capacity: an 10440 battery has higher voltage but less mAh compared to an Eneloop AAA, so yes it can throw more light (lumen) out of a capable flashlight, and in theory i could have similar or even longer run-times - but has manufacturers focus on playing the lumen-game they tend to have shorter run-times compared to AAA's ...
    If there a 10440 battery powered flashlights with more modes so I can choose between more light or longer runtimes (speaking of hours, not minutes) I would seriously have a look at those.

    Here's what I'm looking for:
    • > 100 lumen in high mode (10440 typically have 200-300 lumen)
    • 10-40 lumen in mid mode
    • <1 lumen in low-mode
    For example: if the UltraTac K18 would offer the AAA modes in addition to the 10440 modes, when operated with a 10440 battery (making it 6 vs. 3 modes), this would be pretty interesting

    Any suggestions? Thanks!
     
    Last edited by FiaOlleDog, Feb 13, 2019
    #63 FiaOlleDog, Feb 13, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2019
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  4. flux

    flux Loaded Pockets

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    one of the latest 10440 lights is the Folomov C1, which has LMHML modes and additional Moonlight and a Turbo mode. It runs only with 10440 and comes with a USB rechargeable 10440 battery. Available at Illumn. It might be notworthy that it uses a 98CRI LED and emits warm light.
     
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  5. Tesla

    Tesla Loaded Pockets

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    Running only on a rechargeable would certainly be a deal-breaker for many, including myself.
     
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  6. FiaOlleDog

    FiaOlleDog Loaded Pockets

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    So the LED driver won't work with 1.5V alkaline or 1.2V NiMH (Eneloop)? That's understandable from an engineering perspective (efficiency and simpleness of the driver chip) - but ruins the "replenish is available almost anywhere" use-case. Otherwise I think I would like it.
     
    Last edited by FiaOlleDog, Feb 14, 2019
    #66 FiaOlleDog, Feb 14, 2019
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2019
  7. Brewer

    Brewer Loaded Pockets

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    I have eliminated AAA lights from my serious kit, and despite owning a USB-rechargeable Pelican 7600 (issued to me by an emergency response agency I volunteer with) I choose AA lights as my preference.

    As others have mentioned, the rechargeable light is great, until your incident blows out. Then you are starting to worry about where your next flashlight is coming from.

    AA is still pretty ubiquitous - my radio comm earmuffs take them, my UHF radio can take them at a push (via an adapter), my pager takes them, and my flashlights take them, so I always carry spares.

    I carry a couple of Quark AA's with 14500 lions in them. That way I get the extra grunt as long as the 14500's last, but then it's a quick swap to primaries if needed. I also prefer single AA as they are more manageable on a lanyard or helmet, and its a lot easier to wrangle 2 AA's in a field changeover scenario than 4. No chance of accidentally mismatching a full and flat combo - you've either got the good one or the bad one in there. Finally, carrying 2 x 1AA lights rather than 1 x 2AA light gives me redundancy and versatility (and double the output if I really need it).
     
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  8. Totaled108

    Totaled108 Empty Pockets

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    Everyone’s experience is different.

    I had contemplated switching over to USB rechargeable, but the drawbacks of not being able to quickly swap out energy sources on the fly and not being near a USB often, kept me from switching.

    I run a AA(x2 batteries) flashlight a single AA headlamp and a single AAA battery pocket light. I use them all on a regular basis. I don’t understand why you’d need to purchase batteries more then once every five years or so. Has no one heard of rechargeable AA/AAA batteries? I have a pair of AA batteries that are over a decade old and still in my rotation of 7-8 AA batteries. Only have 4 AAA batteries to rotate through, more then enough for my needs.
     
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  9. EZDog

    EZDog EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    Like you said everyones experience is different.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  10. JJ4

    JJ4 Empty Pockets

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    An external charger and a couple extra Li-ion batteries seems like the solution. Quality 14500 or 18650 batteries are only around $7 each, and a smart charger that will charge literally any size NiMH or Li-ion cell can be had for about $20, which you only need to buy once. I have a couple flashlights with built-in rechargers, but I don't use them. I always charge the batteries in an external charger.
     
  11. Totaled108

    Totaled108 Empty Pockets

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    ^^This would be the best option for long term use.
    Prices for li-ion batteries and chargers have come down and availability and options have gone way up since I started my setup, over a decade ago.
     
  12. SOS24
    • +2 Supporter

    SOS24 Loaded Pockets

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    I’m not a big fan of straight rechargeable flashlights, but I do really like flashlights that can use rechargeable batteries. That being said, there are even 14500 batteries with a micro USB charging port, so you can have both the USB charging and readily available battery size. Even without the micro USB charge port chargers like the Olight UC Magnetic and Nitecore LC10 USB chargers aren’t much bigger than a micro USB cable. So I wouldn’t abandon AAA/AA flashlights if that is what you like.
     
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  13. Kev2488

    Kev2488 Loaded Pockets

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    I carry a Maratac AAA because it's small and it 90cri. My work gives out AAA and AA batteries on the restock for the next day so for that reason I have a few lights for these battery types. But my most used item is my Fenix HL 55, I can run on medium and high most of the day and then some the next with a 18650. I have a Princeton tec Vizz but the AAA batteries only provide an hour of regulated runtime and then it starts to drop quickly so for me when I need to use a light I go away from the standard batteries.

    Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
     
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  14. FiaOlleDog

    FiaOlleDog Loaded Pockets

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    Maybe your work (employer) could rethink the environmental footprint alkaline batteries have ... and replace those with AA / AAA NiMH batteries like Eneloops - can be recharged 500-1000 times within a few hours. And they would be cost efficient too - saving your employer some bucks (that's what they usually listen too).

    Just my $0.02
     
  15. EZDog

    EZDog EDC Junkie!!!!!

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    Again
    There are plenty of situations where the practical implications of using Eneloops are just not realistic whether you prefer the environmental impact or not.

    Evidently what actually works for some of us is of little real concern or interest to others compared to this perceived level of abuse to the environment.
     
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  16. Tesla

    Tesla Loaded Pockets

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    Agree with you EZDog. Rechargeables are not really the environmental savior. They have to be charged from sources that are generally not environmentally friendly, and they must eventually be discarded and their charger when it ultimately fails. Plus for flashlights, which are often stored & seldom used by most, primaries pose less risk of self discharge. Issuing rechargeables to employees to have them recharge them on the job doesn't really strike me as good use of manpower, either.
     
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  17. Kev2488

    Kev2488 Loaded Pockets

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    Yeah my company makes 15+ million a year so some things don't matter. Believe me when I tell you no one will take their eneloops home and charge them, people barely charge up their power tools lol. Or actually come into work everyday lol

    Sent from my moto g(7) using Tapatalk
     
  18. Burncycle

    Burncycle Loaded Pockets

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    I've settled on 18650 for most of what I use -- a Zebralight SC600 if I know I'm going out after dark, and a Blackshadow Terminator for in my vehicle or fire / vehicle accidents / search and rescues.

    For everyday carry though I still use a regular streamlight microstream (not the USB version), overdriven with a 10440 lithium ion battery. The result is an impressive amount of light from that light that size, and gives just shy of 30 minutes runtime. I think the form factor and UI is perfect for EDC, and I can always throw a regular AAA in there if I needed to, but generally I only ever need it for a quick blip of light or a few minutes at a time.
     
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  19. smokingfish

    smokingfish Loaded Pockets

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    I'm not sure that's always true.
    I have an olight m2r and it is usb charged and has a rechargeable battery.

    I have a small lumintop tool and it is my favorite light to carry. Small and reliable.

    [​IMG]

    The batteries are small and I keep one in my car and kitchen.
     
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  20. Reidar Chr. L. Guttormsen

    Reidar Chr. L. Guttormsen Loaded Pockets

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    Have some of these. Sometimes if the battery have been completely discharged it will appear to be 'dead' no matter how long you recharge them. I found that if you hold in the button for 20-30 seconds it will 'reboot' and start working again