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Thread: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

  1. #1
    Flashaholic CLBME's Avatar
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    Default Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    Good afternoon,

    I've been spending time reading on this forum and it's been very helpful but I need some help in making a decision on buying a EDC flashlight.

    I've narrowed my choice to three: Nitecore EX10, Fenix PD20, Quark 123 but just cannot decide as all seem to be well-received and basically in the same price range.

    This is what I'll do with it/reasons for narrowing to these three:

    I'm a contractor and use a flashlight to inspect/work on equipment on a regular basis. As part of my work I plow snow in the winter and often need a small light for the same reasons. I currently have large lite boxes in each truck if I need. I want a flashlight that I can swear on my belt all day without causing interference with equipment operation/sitting, which is why I've narrowed the list down to these three models that are all about 3". I've used mag lites but they are too long on my belt and the lens get easily ruined. I've read reviews on each and am "stuck" on which to buy.

    I realize this is a pretty open-ended question open to opinion but I'm hoping someone has used them all and can make a suggestion to help me.

    Thank you in advance for your help.

    Christian.

  2. #2
    *Flashaholic* Gunner12's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    If you like smaller size and user definable output, go for the EX10. If you like a really low low, and a few flashy modes, go for the Quark. Fenix has been around a long time so their products have a pretty good track record. The PD20 is pretty easy to use and has been around in different versions for a good amount of time.

    My pick would be the EX10 because I like a smaller light.


  3. #3

    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    I recommend an XP-G Quark 123 tactical. It has a lot of flood, but has enough throw for any indoor application as well. You can program your two favorite modes for easy access.

  4. #4
    Flashaholic* csshih's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    if you can buy 2... the quark and the nitecore.

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    Flashaholic CLBME's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    Thank you for your replies! Seems like I'm down to Nitecore or Quark. Any more thoughts?

    Christian

  6. #6
    Flashaholic CLBME's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    After more consideration I bought a quark tactical. I liked the on/off button in this model for activation with gloves and the acc's that came with it. I also use it a lot outside in the cold and went with a clicky button rather than the PD as I thought the lube needed in the PD might get stiffer in the cold. I'm sure for my use the quark will be fine but a nitecore may show up for other reasons.

    Thanks again for the replies and wealth of information here in the CPF's.

    Christian.

  7. #7
    Flashaholic crocodilo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    Never tried the Quark, so no comments there.

    I had a Fenix PD20 (which i sold away) and I kept my Nitecore EX10: better low, better UI (IMO), smaller package, RCR compatible, added a clip. After owning several Nitecores and Fenixes, I kept the Ns and sold the Fs.
    EDC: mostly Surefires. At work: Spectrolab Nightsun mounted on an EH101!

  8. #8
    Flashaholic* Henk_Lu's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    I have (had) all three lights...

    The only one to operate well with gloves should be the Quark 123 Tactical. My neutral white version is currently in my pocket. Did you buy the new XPG or the "old" R2 version? There are still neutral whites available in tactical.

    The pros of the Quark are its beam, simple use once programmed, quite rugged, good universal light. You are limited to two brightnesses however, reprogrammig all the time isn't funny. I set mine to high and Max, but I miss a lower mode. If I set it to medium and Max, I miss something in between and if I set it to medium and high I miss high output. Once I have my RCR123 I'll feed it with these, so high and Max should be best.

    The EX10 has a cool UI, not very usable with gloves though. I guess the piston drive doesn't especialla like teh cold and it hates wet and dirty conditions. Nothing's better than a Clicky in those conditions. The EX10 is not a rugged light, there are lots with problems on the contact system, the body is quite thin as well. The beam is nice, but not as floody as the Quark.

    I don't know the new PD20+, I had the Q5 version with SMO reflector, quite throwy light, but not enouhg spill. Perhaps the OP was better. The light is rugged though, but as it used a reverse clicky, you can forget about gloves and no momentary.

    With the Quark, you did the right choice!
    My way : From Maglite and drop-ins over Fenix & Co to the real things - Customs and Titaniums!

  9. #9
    *Flashaholic* Gunner12's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    I hope you like the light!

  10. #10
    Flashaholic CLBME's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    Hi again and thanks a lot for the continued replies.

    Henk_Lu you confirmed the choice I made so thank you. It was hard to decide but for the reasons you noted and what I had concluded it lead me to the Quark. The construction environment is tough on equipment just by nature even if you take great care of it so your thoughts on the nitecore help as well. I still do "like" the nitecore for some reason. Having never seen one of course I have no first-hand experience. Maybe I will try one at some point, so Crocodilo thank you for your thoughts too. Gunner 12 I'll let you know when I receive it. I'm looking forward to receiving it. I'm guessing it will be more than adequate for my needs but it sure is interesting to see how much is involved with and available in flashlights.

    Thanks again.

    Christian.

  11. #11
    Flashaholic CLBME's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    Henk_Lu- sorry about that! I believe I bought the XPG if I remember correctly from the website. I didn't frankly understand the beam tints I have to say. I just ordered from the website item/picture. This is my confirmation from 4 Sevens:

    1 x *Ships 12/01* Quark 123 Tactical (no clip), R5 Edition (FS.Q123-Tnoclip)

    I did get it without the clip though. For my needs it seemed to be unnecessary and maybe in the way although I do understand the anti-roll function of it. We'll see.

    Christian

  12. #12
    *Flashaholic* Gunner12's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    The R5 edition should be overall brighter then the previous ones, but it will also have a slightly dimmer, but wider, hotspot.

    The clip sticks out, so when the light rolls to where the clip sticks out, it should stop because of the clip.

  13. #13
    Flashaholic CLBME's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    Thanks Gunner12. It seems like the wider hotspot/brighter light will be helpful in my application. I went without the clip but couldn't figure out from the forum whether it could be added later? Some people liked it but it seemed "big" for the light to me? I'll have it in a holster or my hand. Do you think it's a good idea? Someone did mention the ability though to clip it to a hat brim, which I thought smart. I have a head light now but I did see somewhere in my flashlight surfing a neat head band that had spots to stick a light into it.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    I don't think you're missing much by going with the clip-less model...in my opinion it is a decent clip but not outstanding. I like it okay on my QAA^2, but not so much on the QAA because the tip of the clip contacts the head. This makes it harder to clip it to things and turning the head causes the clip to scrape against the side of the head (or tail if reversed). As far as I can tell this would only get worse if the clip was permanently affixed to the head of the light - as it is on the Q123.
    Pretend the scepter is a flashlight.

  15. #15
    Flashaholic CLBME's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    Thanks Saint Dogbert for the reply. I had read input that echoes your thoughts regarding the clip. Glad I went that way.

  16. #16
    Flashaholic* Henk_Lu's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    Quote Originally Posted by CLBME View Post
    Henk_Lu- sorry about that! I believe I bought the XPG if I remember correctly from the website. I didn't frankly understand the beam tints I have to say. I just ordered from the website item/picture. This is my confirmation from 4 Sevens:

    1 x *Ships 12/01* Quark 123 Tactical (no clip), R5 Edition (FS.Q123-Tnoclip)

    I did get it without the clip though. For my needs it seemed to be unnecessary and maybe in the way although I do understand the anti-roll function of it. We'll see.

    Christian
    Yeah, you bought the right one! The "old" XPE-R2 have been moved to the "R2" sction, so you won't buy them per accident. They are 15% cheaper now, highly recommendable to those who can't afford the XPG-R5 or for those who want to have slightly more throw. As you explained your use of the light, the XPG is the better choice.

    I also have the one without a clip, it's a personal choice, I still my lights in my trousers' pocket, so I'm better off without one. I got a titanium 123 with clip however (tactical) last sunday from the parts sale (there was no without clip anymore). You can make an antiroll by installing a ring through two hoes in the tailcap, I did that and got it a self-made paracord-lanyard as well, the ones provided are too long to my gusto...
    My way : From Maglite and drop-ins over Fenix & Co to the real things - Customs and Titaniums!

  17. #17
    Flashaholic CLBME's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    Thanks again Henk_Lu. Good idea on the ring! I'll check that out when it arrives- probably this week.

  18. #18
    Flashaholic* DimeRazorback's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    My pick would be the Nitecore EX10

    The Quarks are good none the less though

    ^^Click for my beamshots!!^^ My Flashlights

  19. #19
    Flashaholic CLBME's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    DimeRazorback I'm still not sure one won't end up in my stocking! (-: Thanks.

  20. #20
    Flashaholic CLBME's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    I just wanted to say thank you to those who had helped me pick out the Quark 123. It has been perfect for my needs. (Incidentally I rec'd the wrong model accidentally from 4Sevens at first- the non-tactical and it confirmed my thoughts on the tactical raised button for working with gloves. I also realized that the tactical two-mode is ideal for my work needs. I really don't need all of the other modes in my work application.) It's small enough to be unobtrusive on my belt but big enough to handle easily too. I find myself using it a lot. Thanks again & happy holidays.

    OBTW- 4Sevens was great about shipping out the tactical model even without getting the other back first. Great CS.

    Christian
    Last edited by CLBME; 12-13-2009 at 08:08 AM. Reason: spelling error

  21. #21
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    I think the proper answer is to buy all three and report back which one you like the best!

    I really like the PD20 and EX10.

    I hated the Quark tactical operation since you only have quick access to 2 light levels. Both are programmable, but not quickly. That is a personal preference thing.


    I have no issues at all with any of them with gloves on.

  22. #22
    Flashaholic CLBME's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need help with flashlight choice: Quark, Nitecore, Fenix?

    Hi Batmanacw,

    Thanks for the reply. Well, I did order a Fenix TK10 for around the house- a present for under the tree! Next on my list is a nitecore. I have a birthday in March, which may be just the excuse as I do still want one.

    You're right on the tactical. As noted some people like the variable light levels. For construction work two suit me just fine. The nitecore though will provide me with the opportunity to check the different levels more easily.

    Christian

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