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Thread: Maglite LED vs Icandescent Distance

  1. #1
    Unenlightened
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    Mar 2012
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    Default Maglite LED vs Icandescent Distance

    Ok I have done a little research and browsing on here but I really have not found the answer to my questions.

    I see many people like the LED's, but the only LED lights I have owned were so terrible I dont want that again.

    They were very very bright but did not shine far at all, and that relates to the questions I have.

    I have a 4D Maglite and wanted to know:

    If I replace the regular bulb with something like the Terralux TLE-6EX will I still be able to use the spot to wide beam function of my Mag?

    Will the LED shine further than the regular bulb or a shorter distance (shorter is not an option)?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Maglite LED vs Icandescent Distance

    Short answer; yes.

    As long as the modification involves replacing the bulb with another bulb, you will be able to use the zoom feature of your Maglite. TLE-6EX will definitely accommodate that.

    HOWEVER...

    I suggest you look at Malkoff's offerings. Malkoff drop-ins for Maglites have higher output than TerraLUX's, as well as having a top-tier reliability and warranty.

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* AnAppleSnail's Avatar
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    Default Re: Maglite LED vs Icandescent Distance

    Quote Originally Posted by only126db View Post
    Will the LED shine further than the regular bulb or a shorter distance (shorter is not an option)?
    I do not have a stock 4D Mag lite, but I DO have a similar build (Regular 4D Mag bulb, not the extra-bright Mag bulb) in a 2C mag lite. It runs on 6v and it has less throw than my Mag 2D LED or Mag 3D LED when fully focused. The spot of the LED mag lite is a circle of even brightness, while even the center of the mag lite incan is not brighter than the LED. An overdriven incandescent can outpower any of my LED lights, but the bulb burns out when the batteries are recharged.

    How often do you defocus the mag lite? I keep mine on full-focus, using ceiling bounce for indoors work. If you don't really need to change the beam pattern, you can open a lot of options.
    My biggest light-hog is my camera.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Maglite LED vs Icandescent Distance

    you will be able to use focus, if you like donut holes that is. you better off with a scotch tape over the glass as difuser than with focusing
    as for throw, the bulb will throw farther than tle-6, if you want mag to throw, either get malkoff xp-e xp-g drop in , when they are available again, or just buy 2-3d magled they throw really far.

  5. #5
    Flashaholic* AnAppleSnail's Avatar
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    Default Re: Maglite LED vs Icandescent Distance

    Quote Originally Posted by alpg88 View Post
    as for throw, the bulb will throw farther than tle-6, if you want mag to throw, either get malkoff xp-e xp-g drop in , when they are available again, or just buy 2-3d magled they throw really far.
    This is true. I will compare my 3D maglite to my 35W Stanley HID tonight. I'll probably call the thread something useful like Mag Lite throw comparisons.
    My biggest light-hog is my camera.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Maglite LED vs Icandescent Distance

    Quote Originally Posted by only126db View Post
    Ok I have done a little research and browsing on here but I really have not found the answer to my questions.

    I see many people like the LED's, but the only LED lights I have owned were so terrible I dont want that again.

    They were very very bright but did not shine far at all, and that relates to the questions I have.

    I have a 4D Maglite and wanted to know:

    If I replace the regular bulb with something like the Terralux TLE-6EX will I still be able to use the spot to wide beam function of my Mag?

    Will the LED shine further than the regular bulb or a shorter distance (shorter is not an option)?
    Are you in the UK or USA?

    If you're in the UK then you can get The Torch Site direct dropin for around £15, they offer a 180 lumen (LED) XPE and a 200 lumen (LED) XPG R5. I accept they might not have the best heatsinking, but they are thermal regulated and if you're not going to use them for extended 'on' time, then it won't be an issue.

    They both retain the MagLite focusing, however if honest I've never found it to be any use anyhow, all you ever do is focus it to a tight hotspot and make it like any other flashlight that doesn't have an adjustable head. With an LED you can focus a much tighter and crisper hotspot and a much more artefact free beam. When you de-focus you can't actually get the hotspot much bigger and it quickly becomes a donut.

    The throw (distance) on them is superb and far exceeds the incan bulbs with ease. The spill is also much brighter maker them much nicer lights to use. There's little difference between the XPE 180 lumen the XPG R5 200 lumen, the XPE has a smaller tighter hotspot and throws slightly further, but the XPG has a slightly brighter spill. Tints on mine are very comparable.

    The only incan Mag I have to compare against is my 6v MagCharger, so brighter than most normal D cell incan Mags and has very good throw. The LED's match or exceed the MagCharger in terms of throw.





    105 feet


    189 feet



    Both my 6 and 3D will just about light up the hedge at over 500 feet away.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Maglite LED vs Icandescent Distance

    Quote Originally Posted by only126db View Post
    I have a 4D Maglite and wanted to know:

    1. If I replace the regular bulb with something like the Terralux TLE-6EX will I still be able to use the spot to wide beam function of my Mag?
    2. Will the LED shine further than the regular bulb or a shorter distance (shorter is not an option)?
    Answer to 1) Yes.
    Answer to 2) It will shine further. I have the TLE-6EX in the 6D Mag (it'll shine the same, just a little longer). You'll get ~1.8X the original lumens and increase the throw by about 15-20%. Not bad for $15.

    Good luck. And make sure you don't order the 2-3 D-Cell bulb... that won't work correctly. The batteries will last longer too, so it'll pay for itself.

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