EDIT - I can't change my vote, but I'm up to 8 now....it was 5 when I started the poll. And I love 'em all!
Isn't this hobby interesting? I remember when I started acquiring 'quality' lights, I reached out to Fyrstormer to ask him if a McGizmo was 'worth it.' He very eloquently shared with me information and advice that are still relevant today. The basic message: Quality, Utility and Value.
Since then I have enjoyed experiencing THOUSANDS of dollars worth of quality, desirable lights. This is the McGizmo section of the forum, so I won't name the 'other' names, but suffice it to say that I have experienced virtually EVERY custom light and most mainstream manufacturers lights. At one time, the value of my collection was well over 5 digits.. And many of these lights were awesome, state of the art treasures that deserve tributes all their own.
Then the 'sell off.' Much of the $$ went to help fund purchases of precious metals and other things to protect against economic problems, and at the same time I ventured out into more varied mainstream lights, legos, etc.
But all the while, I kept my Bead Blast Haiku XRE and my Haiku XPG. All other ti lights went away, but my quantity of lights remained fairly high. Acquired a few nice knives along the way, too.
But then the other day I felt that old call of the McGizmo and ordered up a fresh, new 6V Haiku XML from Don. Man, oh man. It all came back. The "bullet proof" quality. The amazing beam quality. The almost perfect levels. The timeless design and construction from beautiful titanium. And as cool as the PD switch is, the McClicky is just perfect for me. So I added a 6V Makai XML and a warm Haiku XPG, and to fund all this sold off TWENTY (yes, 20) 'other' lights - darn good lights, too, to help me justify dropping around $1400 in a few days...these to add to the 'original' Haikus I maintained throughout.
That 6V Makai XML must be voodoo magic. Most 'bright' LED lights with long throw are unpleasant up close, but not the Makai. Somehow Don has focused the beam such that there is a perfect balance of spill and throw, and even when shined right in front of me it isn't harsh. But it throws FOREVER!
The 6V Haiku XML is a 'wall of light'. My sphere measures it (like the Makai) at 371 lumen on high, but the beam 'looks' totally different. GREAT for near field illumination, yet it will throw for 50 feet. Really nice tint - no XML 'green' tint at all.
The 'old' classic - an original Haiku in bead blast. How does Don get the ringiness out of the XRE emitter? Really nice tint...and the bead blast is beautiful.
The Haiku XPG - I wrote a LONG review of my light (still own that same Haiku) back in January of 2010 and it still holds true (see here). Timeless goodness - punchy flood - and Don squeezes every photon out of the XPG emitter...mine measures consistently just under 200 lumen. It's been my control light for my integrating sphere since I built the sphere. It's a classic.
The 'warm' Haiku XPG - it has become one of my main EDC lights. After a brief infatuation with incandescent lights I really began to appreciate the warm tints more, but I prefer the tint of this light more than any incan I own, plus it has the beautiful beam of a Haiku XPG. I measure it at just under 150 lumen in my sphere, but it's such a useable beam and the 150 lumen provides PLENTY of light.
So why this post? I just had it on my mind and wanted to share with my brothers and sisters on CPF - quality just NEVER goes out of style, and Don just has a special magic when it comes to designing and building custom lights.
(I'll be doing some beam shots of my 5 McGizmos versus a few other lights Labor Day Weekend - I'll add a link to the post HERE after it is completed)
In a world filled with "me, too" products - when we seem to always look for the best deal, and manufacturers seek out cheap labor to try and satisfy our insatiable desires for MORE for LESS, isn't it refreshing that there are still craftsmen out there (like Don Mcleish) that shun shortcuts and continue to build products to meet their own discerning standards of quality and utility. Whether it's a Rick Hinderer knife, or a Rolex watch, or a McGizmo flashlight...and almost without exception, these quality products end up being a better 'value' than the 'bargain' products.
I said this in one of my original posts, but I'll share it again:
"I have discovered a remarkable pleasure and satisfaction in the 'KISS' philosophy of flashaholism. All the concerns about lumen ratings, blah blah, pale in comparison to the satisfaction of owning a simple, durable tool that just plain works - every time you need it.
Don's lights do that better - at least for me - than any of the others I've tried or use."
So I salute you, Mr. McGizmo! Thanks for continuing to provide us with "the good stuff!"
My 'meager' collection:
(Karl, sorry, I'm hijacking your photo...hope you don't mind!)
Okay, folks - one more McGizmo on the way....