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As a kid, I always had a Maglite Flashlight. They came in big and small, and I remember them always running out. In 1984 they released the Mini Maglite which I always carried with me on trips.
With modern day advances in lighting (LEDs) and batteries (lithium) I decided to take a look at my flashlights, including making sure I have an Every Day Carry (EDC) flashlight.
Flashlights are very useful tools. For me it comes down to:
Home emergency and tasks
Bedside (so I can avoid turning the lights on)
Travel (finding stuff in my backpack or luggage)
Travel (finding my way around an unfamiliar hotel room or house in the dark)
Photography (light painting for long exposure)
Last year I started testing out some flashlights from a company called Foursevens. They make a bunch of flash lights and below are the ones I've purchased.
The main difference between all these flashlights is the kind and amount of battery power.
Your choices are
Alkaline or NiCad (AAA and AA) in 1 or 2 quantities
Lithium (CR123A) in 1 or 2 quantities
There are pros and cons for each. Alkaline and NiCad (rechargeable) batteries are plentiful and easy to purchase and replace. Lithium CR123A (there is also a rechargeable version) are a LOT more powerful. Let me illustrate:
Alkaline (1.5V @ 2,500 mAh) = 3750 mWh
NiCad (1.2V @ 1,900 mAh) = 2280 mWh
Lithium CR123A (3V @ 1,500 mAh) = 4500 mWh
As you can see, Lithium batteries are more powerful. That means they can drive a brighter light and they also last longer. AA batteries are also narrower and taller and that can make a difference.
You can see the differences
The most useful flashlight I have is the one on my iPhone. It's easily accessible, and lasts a very long time. It's also reasonably bright.
I have been playing with the following Quark flashlights in the photo
Preon P1 Copper - AAA flash light. I love this light as it's small, fits in a pocket and is good for travel. For Christmas I got the kids their own as stocking stuffers in Blue and Black. You can also find it in a taller "pen" like size with two AAA batteries, called the Prion P1. 100 lumens / 1h runtime
Foursevens Quark Smart QSL-X - This is a blue tooth flashlight, and has a corresponding iPhone app to configure and control it. This flashlight also lacks a clip. I don't love it. 350 lumens / 1.5h runtime
Foursevens Quark Pro QPA - Powered by a single AA battery. I like this one a lot as it's simple and easy to find a battery for. But they don't seem to make it any more.
Foursevens FOURSEVENS Quark Click QK2L-X - this is powered by two CR123A batteries and is my favorite. I love the size and power. 780 lumens / 1.9h runtime
Foursevens Quark Pro QPA2 - Same as the Quark Pro QPA except 2 AA instead of one. I love this flashlight and this is our home emergency or task flashlight. This has now been replaced by the Quark Click QK2A-X. 336 lumens / .8h runtime
All their flashlights are really very good. My favorite are the P1
Also the Quark Click QK2LX.
They are also customizable. You can for example configure the function of the tail clip to allow you to toggle the flash light on and off without a full click. This is often referred to as forward click or reverse clicky.
You can also program the flashlight functions (brightness, strobe etc).
If you are looking for a new flashlight for any reason, check out the Foursevens model lineup. They have a lot of options and really the most important decisions are size, type of battery and features / look such as a clip etc.
OmarKnows Rating: Recommended