Imagine not being able to see your feet in the dark as you climb the stairs of a 100-story skyscraper. You’ve forgotten your favorite EDC light of choice, the lights are out, the emergency power has failed, and you are desperately wishing to see before you trip and fall and roll down the stairs.
Enter the Maglite Solitaire, the revolutionary keychain flashlight with a sleek look and Mag Industry’s legendary reliability. This keychain flashlight uses Krypton gas for almost unheard of output from a single AAA alkaline battery. Today, I will review this light.
Turn on the Solitaire with the bezel facing towards you, and you are blinded by the bright light. I’ve never seen an AAA light this powerful, besides the superior Maglite Mini 2AAA. The powerful Krypton bulb is replaceable, and behind the spring in the tailcap, you can find a replacement bulb, a sensational design advancement by Mag Industries. You don’t see a replacement bulb in the tailcap of the Arc-AAA, do you?
The Solitaire is bright and surprisingly gratifying. Unlike the “benchmark” Arc-AAA, the beam is focusable, and you can even take off the head to put the Solitaire in “candlelight” mode. Take that, Arc Flashlight! The incandescent bulb gives better color rendition than the Arc-AAA, and has none of the strange blotchy blue that could give you a headache. Being able to focus the beam allows the Maglite Solitaire to throw a tight beam of light across a room, unlike the Arc which is too floody and fixed focus for such purposes.
The Solitaire is manufactured out of high grade aircraft aluminum by a reputable company, whereas Arc is made by some mom & pop shop out of who knows what kind of aluminum. Arcs aren’t even shiny, so they must be some kind of poor grade aluminum. Also, the Maglite comes in a variety of colors, unlike the Arc-AAA which only comes in a boring grey. Someone shot an Arc-AAA out of a shotgun or something, and it failed on impact against a tree. I have not tried it with the Solitaire but I am sure that it would keep on working. Even then, you could replace the bulb, unlike the Arc-AAA where the LED is epoxied inside the reflector. It’s a solid little light.
I give the Maglite Solitare 5 out of 5 stars, where it beats the Arc-AAA in style, utility, and durability. Couple that with Maglite’s outstanding warranty, and you have a true winner. Make sure to lube the o-rings with KY or something, to ensure a watertight seal.