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  • Terrific bang for the buck

    posted by EM745 on 10/10/2007
    1

    Involvement:Expert (understands the inner workings) - Ownership:more than 1 month

    Pros:

    In 2xAA mode, this light looks positively sexy! :) Light output is impressive... I was quite taken aback the first time I turned it on (this is my first ever CREE light). CREE's, Rebels... LED lighting sure has come a long way. Bright hotspot lights up treetops over a 100 yards away, and there's enough spill to allow for decent lighting at close and medium ranges (negating the need for any Maglite-like focussing mechanism). The machining and finish are impressive for this price point. Pseudo-tactical bezel adds a nice styling touch, and hex-shaped head prevents the light from rolling around when you lie it down on a table.

    Cons:

    O-rings and threads come dry as a bone. If you do lube these (you should), be sure to use a lube gel that's as inert as possible to silicone (petrol-based grease is NOT recommended).

    The o-ring used to seal the glass lens to the bezel is so far recessed into the inner bezel as to be ineffective. The groove in which this o-rings rests should've been made a little shallower to allow the lens something to "grab" onto when the bezel is tightened.

    The tail cap setup is REALLY goofy: it's about 3 mm too long, and to make up for that slack (to make the clicky work), a small aluminum "puck" has been thrown in there. Best part is, that puck is loose (you can hear and FEEL it when you shake the flashlight). Thankfully, the replacement tailcaps sold here at DX will easily fit this (after a bit of trimming), and will even transform it into a bonafide tail stander!

    Aluminum reflector? NOT! It's all plastic, baby. Maybe it was aluminum at some point, and if it was, it's not anymore.

    OtherThoughts:

    The SKU# 5264 holster will fit this, but it's a very snug fit.

    Alkalines should work fine with this light, but to really make it shine, I suggest you use lithium AA's (the best for hi-drain devices, which this light certainly is). Lithium batteries also work very well in the cold (unlike alkalines).

    That said, I have to wonder why anyone would use this light with CR2's. For one thing, it looks positively dinky in CR2 "mode" (a matter of opinion, perhaps). For another, I don't see what kind of performance edge a CR2 battery would have over a pair of lithium AA's.

    What else... Oh yeah! Be extra careful not to "flash" this in people's eyes! o_O

    Bottomline:

    This is probably the best deal going in high performance double-AA flashlights... Way better than other double-AA lights like the C3. No, it's not perfect, but for the price, it's close enough for me.

    Flashlights make great gifts, and this model is, IMO, a perfect choice for a gift item, given its WOW factor, expensive looks, its single mode (no learning curve), and that it uses easy-to-find AA batteries.

    Get one... or two... or three... You won't regret it. :)

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