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Thread: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and more!

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    *Flashaholic* selfbuilt's Avatar
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    Cool Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and more!

    Warning: pic heavy, as usual.



    Welcome to the new 2xAAA Preon Penlight from Foursevens. This new model is in addition to the earlier Preon P2, which I have previously reviewed in early 2010, and with a revised emitter in late 2011.

    The new penlight looks and feels more like a traditional pen. Let's see how it stacks up to the earlier model and competition.




    As a side note, this same penlight has also been released under Olight's own name (as the O'Pen). Some additional specs for NiMH output/runtime are provided below.

    Manufacturer Reported Specifications:
    (note: as always, these are simply what the manufacturer provides – scroll down to see my actual testing results).

    • LED Emitter: CREE XP-G2
    • Voltage range: 0.9V-3V
    • Spot Beam: Angle: 25 Degree
    • Flood Beam: Angle: 74 Degree
    • Brightness Levels (Alkaline presumed): Low: 5 lumens, 30 hrs/ Medium: 50 lumens, 8 hrs/ High: 180 lumens, 0.4 hrs
    • Olight O'Pen Brightness Levels (NiMH): Low: 4.5 lumens, 30 hrs/ Medium: 42 lumens, 7.5 hrs/ High: 150 lumens, 0.7 hrs
    • Reflector: Textured
    • Body/Bezel Material: Type-III hard-anodized aircraft-grade aluminum
    • Lens Material: Hardened tempered glass lens with antireflective coating on both sides
    • Dimensions: Length: 5.3 inches/Body diameter: 0.5 inches/Head diameter: 0.5 inches
    • Weight (without batteries): 0.79 oz
    • Included Accessories: Batteries
    • MSRP: ~$50-60




    The new Preon Penlight comes in a new style of packaging, which is more stylish and shows off the product more explicitly. Inside the clear plastic container is the light, extra o-ring, a pair of Duracell AAA alkaline batteries and a manual. There is also an overview of specs on the back of the packaging.



    From left to right: Duracell AAA; Foursevens Preon Penlight, Preon P2; Eagletac PN20a2; Foursevens Preon P1, P0.

    2xAAA:
    Foursevens Preon Penlight: Weight 21.9g, Length 136.9mm, Width (bezel) 11.0mm, Width (cap) 13.5mm
    Foursevens Preon P2: Weight 20.2g (with keychain clip), Length 127.4mm, Width (bezel) 14.0mm
    Eagletac PN20α2: Weight 31.3g (with pocket clip), Length 137.7mm, Width (bezel) 16.0mm

    1xAAA:
    4Sevens Preon P0: Weight 13.0g (with keychain clip), Length 55.0mm, Width 12.6mm (bezel)
    4Sevens Preon P1: Weight 15.3g (with keychain clip), Length 75.6mm, Width 14.0mm (bezel)
    Olight i3: Weight 13.2g, Length: 71.9mm, Width (bezel): 14.0mm
    Illuminati Aluminum: Weight 13.9g (with keychain clip), Length 68.8mm, Width 14.0mm (bezel)







    The Preon Penlight is definitely larger than the earlier P2. I also find it looks a lot more like an actual pen. The construction feels very solid. Grip is decent - thanks to the engraved groove design – but may still be a bit smooth for some. Pocket clip is fairly basic, but holds well enough in my limited testing. It also helps with grip, and serves as an anti-roll device.

    Note that a new batch of anodizing colours has been developed for the Penlight series ("Burnt Orange" for the sample they sent me). The anodizing was flawless on my sample.

    Screw threads are surprisingly good on the Penlight. One thing I noticed on the earlier Preon P1/P2 (and P0) was very fine threads, leading to a potential concern of cross-threading risk. But like the rest of the light, the Penlight threads have a solid feel, thicker than most and cut fairly deeply. They are in fact square-cut (trapezoidal), which is impressive on a light this size. They are also anodized for lock-out, which gives you the option to change modes by a twist instead of click (scroll down for the user interface).

    The Penlight has a reverse clicky switch in the "tail" of the light. This means you have to press and release for the switch to turn on. Switch feel is about typical for the class. Note that I found the original Preon P2 to be a bit "squishy" for my tastes.




    The Penlight uses a very small reflector, as the light is tapered at the head. A new style XP-G2 emitter (cool white on my sample, I don't know if Foursevens plans to release other tints) was well centered. Given the size of the head and emitter choice, I would expect a broader hotspot than the earlier XP-E-based Preon P2s. You should have a relatively floody beam here.

    The head of the light was sealed on my sample (presumed Loctite), but you may be able to force it open with strap wrenches.

    User Interface

    The Penlight is very straightforward – gone are the "hidden" modes of the Preon P2.

    Turn the light on by clicking the reverse clicky tailswitch (press and release). The light will come on in the last memorized output mode. You can then cycle through modes by repeatedly clicking the switch off/on. Mode sequence is Lo > Med > Hi, in repeating loop upon successive click.

    Light has mode memory, and retains the last level set (this is a departure from the P2, which always came on in Lo). Also gone are all the "hidden" extra modes of the P1/P2 series – you just have the three regular output modes now.

    Note that the light can also operate as a twisty to change modes, as long as the switch is in the clicked On postion.

    Video:

    For information on the light, including the build and user interface, please see my video overview:



    Video was recorded in 720p, but YouTube typically defaults to 360p. Once the video is running, you can click on the configuration settings icon and select the higher 480p to 720p options. You can also run full-screen.

    As with all my videos, I recommend you have annotations turned on. I commonly update the commentary with additional information or clarifications before publicly releasing the video.

    PWM/Strobe

    Another departure from the P1/P2 – the Penlight appears to be current controlled. I can detect no sign of PWM at any level.

    Similarly, there is no strobe mode either.

    Beamshots:

    All lights are on Sanyo Eneloop AAA NiMH, about ~0.75 meter from a white wall (with the camera ~1.25 meters back from the wall). Automatic white balance on the camera, to minimize tint differences.










    Sorry, I haven't had a chance to do additional beamshots of my other 2xAAA lights. I will add those in the coming days.

    But the above comparisons do give you the idea that the hotspot on the Penlight is broader than typical 1xAAA lights. Overall spillbeam width is not really any different, compared to the other lights (although the brightness of spill seems to be proportionately higher).

    Again, I'll be able to say more once I add the other 2xAAA lights. Stay tuned …

    Testing Method:

    All my output numbers are relative for my home-made light box setup, as described on my flashlightreviews.ca website. You can directly compare all my relative output values from different reviews - i.e. an output value of "10" in one graph is the same as "10" in another. All runtimes are done under a cooling fan, except for any extended run Lo/Min modes (i.e. >12 hours) which are done without cooling.

    I have devised a method for converting my lightbox relative output values (ROV) to estimated Lumens. See my How to convert Selfbuilt's Lightbox values to Lumens thread for more info.

    Throw/Output Summary Chart:

    My summary tables are reported in a manner consistent with the ANSI FL-1 standard for flashlight testing. Please see http://www.flashlightreviews.ca/FL1.htm for a discussion, and a description of all the terms used in these tables. Effective July 2012, I have updated all my Peak Intensity/Beam Distance measures with a NIST-certified Extech EA31 lightmeter (orange highlights).



    As usual in my recent testing, my estimated output measures are higher than the Foursevens specs. Keep in mind that my estimation method is based on a calibration of my lightbox to certain specific makers and testers (including Foursevens), from a specific point in time (see my Lumen Estimation page for more information). But the key point has always been that it doesn't matter for relative output measures, as those remain consistent across all my reviews (i.e., regardless of the absolute value of the calibration, the relative relationships in the table above always hold consistently).

    As a result of the above, I have always recommended you don't focus on one arbitrary output time point (i.e., ANSI FL-1 30 secs), but rather look at the full runtime graphs for how relative output changes over time. The Preon Penlight really underscores this need, for two reasons – as my runtimes below will show, there is a difference in initial output between battery types, and a rapid change in output on some modes.

    Note as well that Foursevens doesn't specify in any of the packaging materials how or when the lumen output is measured, or on what type of cells (i.e., they only state "out the front" lumens). However, the Olight O'Pen (which is the identical model, released under Olight's name) provides comparable lumen and runtime estimates for alkaline cells, as well as additional specs for NiMH. To give you a better idea of what is going on, here is a summary table with my estimated lumen output levels at two time points – ANSI FL-1 standard of 30 secs post-activation, and 5 mins post-activation - on alkaline and NiMH Eneloop.



    As you will see, overall output levels are lower on NiMH across the board. But as you will also see, the output for a given level can change fairly significantly over the first few mins as well. I have no information as to when exactly Foursevens determined their "out the front" lumens (e.g., there is no mention of ANSI FL-1 anywhere on the documentation).

    Given the above, it is critical that you examine the actual runtime curves, to find out when exactly a given mode reaches its "steady-state" flat regulation level. You cannot necessarily rely on a simple table of a single time point to tell you everything you need to know.

    Output/Runtime Comparison:

    Note: As always, my runtime graphs are presented in my relative lightbox output scale, NOT in estimated lumens.









    The above runtimes provide a lot more information about relative output level changes over time. I suggest you go through them carefully, to get a better feel for how output differs between battery types, and over time. But keep in mind the above graphs are in my raw relative lightbox output values, not estimated lumens.

    In addition to my earlier comments, a few other immediate observations strike me from the runtimes above. The first of these is that the new current-controlled circuit on the Penlight is a lot more efficient at the Med level than the earlier Preon P2 (and presumably, at the Lo as well).

    The second point is that the Penlight is driven higher on Max than the earlier P2. While some may like this extra boost, it does lower relative efficiency. It causes a particular issue for alkaline cells, which are not designed for these sorts of drain rates (i.e., output drops rapidly). Although oddly, L92 also seems to underperform what I would have expected. The take home message from the above is that on Hi, the Penlight is best suited to NiMH rechargeable cells.

    But to come back my earlier point on output levels, the results above make it clear that initial activation is higher at all levels than the steady-state flat-regulation level (except for perhaps L92 lithium). At a minimum, I would suggest you consider both initial activation, and a period 5+ mins after activation (when most modes have stabilized).

    In terms of the runtime specs, there is again no mention of use of the ANSI FL-1 standards (which is time to 10% of peak output post 30 secs). However, using this standard, my NiMH results correlate fairly well with the reported runtimes. Alkaline runtime specs seem over-stated for my sample however, as I observed reduced runtimes compared to what they report. For example, I found 0.15 hours on Hi measured for Duracell alkaline (ANSI FL-1) on my sample, compared to the 0.4 hours Foursevens spec. Similarly, on Med, I found 6.5 hours on Duracell alkaline (ANSI FL-1), compared to 8 hours spec. But again, you need to put that in context of other lights at these output levels - the Penlight is certainly a very efficient model (at least on Med). And it's possible my sample is driven higher on Hi than typical (i.e., I don't know how variable output/runtimes are across samples).

    Potential Issues

    The Penlight is highly driven on Hi, leading to relatively short runtimes on alkaline or L92 lithium (compared to others in this class). I found the head gets very warm very quickly on Hi, so I don't imagine you will want to run the light for extended periods at that level.

    The Penlight is larger than the earlier Preon P2, but has a more traditional pen size and design.

    Output level estimation is complicated by the differing initial output levels on alkaline and NiMH (compared to the steady-state regulated level, which was often lower). See the runtime graphs above for more information.

    Runtimes seem fairly accurate on NiMH (for the ANSI FL-1 standard to 10%), but seem optimistic on alkaline (at least based on my one sample).

    Preliminary Observations

    The Penlight is a solid, well-built 2xAAA light. It has a more substantial look and feel compared to the earlier Preon P2. In terms of build and hand feel (including switch feel), I would consider the Penlight to be a superior light.

    Styling is always going to be a matter of personal preference, but I find the build elements work well together. The clip is serviceable (although we'll see how it holds up to long term use/abuse), and I like the grooved body design. Batteries (including NiMH) fit well, with little evidence of rattle on my sample.

    Personally, I am quite happy with the new limited 3-mode interface. I have never seen the need for a tactical strobe mode in a penlight. I also like the new mode memory feature - with the light starting on Lo when cycling through levels, but retaining the last setting for re-activation.

    Output/runtime performance is generally excellent for the output level and battery source. I am glad to see Foursevens was able to incorporate a current-controlled circuit in this relatively small head (i.e., no PWM flicker or reduced efficiency).

    The only issue I have here is the output level on Hi seems excessive, resulting in both higher heat and lower runtime (especially on standard alkaline cells). I would suggest you use the Hi mode for brief periods of time only. I'd recommend to the manufacturer a lower Hi mode, but otherwise I think the level spacing is appropriate for a general purpose light (although a moonlight mode would also have been nice).

    In terms of the beam, the Preon Penlight has a relatively broad hotspot. Overall spillbeam width is not particularly wide, but the spill is relatively bright. Coupled with the broad hotspot, this gives it a fairly even or "floody" appearance. I think this beam pattern is well suited to a penlight (i.e., I don't like a tight hotspot in this form factor). The XP-G2 emitter appears to have been a good choice for the build.

    I don't know what Foursevens plans are for the original Preon P2, but I can see the Penlight fitting into a more "presentation-style" general-purpose niche. Note that it is also available as the Olight O'Pen. Certainly another option to consider in the 2xAAA space - and a classy looking one at that.

    ----

    Preon Penlight was supplied by Foursevens for review.
    Last edited by selfbuilt; 05-03-2013 at 06:25 PM.
    Full list of all my reviews: flashlightreviews.ca. Latest hobby: whiskyanalysis.com. Latest flashlight review: Thrunite TN42.
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  2. #2

    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Really a nice-looking light and 240 lumens on high is great for a light this size. Thanks for the review.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Interesting review Selfbuilt, thanks. Seems odd to me that operation on High with alkalines is so, well, short. I would have thought that this light is mainly targeted at non-flashaholic who will mainly use alkalines, and maybe be disappointed at the short runtimes on high. Not that that bothers me, as I'll use eneloops, but I just wonder if they have got this right.

    Looking forward to receiving my Olight version.

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    Flashaholic* parnass's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Quote Originally Posted by selfbuilt View Post
    ... The Penlight has a reverse clicky switch in the "tail" of the light. This means you have to press and release for the switch to turn on, as with all other 2xAAA-class penlights (i.e., only reverse-clickies seems to be possible in switches this size). ....
    Good review! Thanks for posting it.

    One correction -- There are several 2AAA penlights with forward clickies which provide momentary action. Examples include the Streamlight Stylus Pro, Streamlight 88039 Protac 2AAA, Pelican 1920, Snap-On penlight, Brite Strike EPLI Executive, 5.11 Tactical ATAC PLx, etc.

    Some of these are multi mode lights.
    Retired engineer, author. Running Linux.

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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Does it fit into a dress shirt pocket?

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    *Flashaholic* selfbuilt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Quote Originally Posted by Dubois View Post
    Interesting review Selfbuilt, thanks. Seems odd to me that operation on High with alkalines is so, well, short. I would have thought that this light is mainly targeted at non-flashaholic who will mainly use alkalines, and maybe be disappointed at the short runtimes on high. Not that that bothers me, as I'll use eneloops, but I just wonder if they have got this right.
    Yes, a good point. This is why my main recommendation would be to have a lower Hi mode.

    Quote Originally Posted by parnass View Post
    One correction -- There are several 2AAA penlights with forward clickies which provide momentary action. Examples include the Streamlight Stylus Pro, Streamlight 88039 Protac 2AAA, Pelican 1920, Snap-On penlight, Brite Strike EPLI Executive, 5.11 Tactical ATAC PLx, etc.
    Good point, I removed that sentence about being typically reverse-clickies.

    Quote Originally Posted by WilsonCQB1911 View Post
    Does it fit into a dress shirt pocket?
    Yes, no problem.
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  7. #7

    Default Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and

    Great review Selfbuilt - thanks.

    This has become a favorite light for business casual (or better) wear, and also as a gift for the non- or budding-flashaholic. It uniquely fills the niche between a classy/elegant fashion accessory and a serious illumination tool.

    For those considering the lower priced Olight version, just keep in mind the difference in warranty/customer service should something go wrong.

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    Flashaholic* HIDblue's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and

    Great review selfbuilt!

    Just wish it had a forward clicky for momentary activation.
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    Flashaholic StudFreeman's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and

    Great review, selfbuilt. Thanks--I really want this thing now! I was impressed by the MiniMag Pro's output (for a multitude of reasons), but the Preon Pen bests it while being smaller. I'm waiting for the High CRI version.

    I agree with you about output versus runtime: 47s should consider instituting a timed stepdown to say, 70%. That would boost runtime a little and make the light more appealing to the average buyer (who are more likely to run this on alkaline cells).

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    *Flashaholic* selfbuilt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and

    Quote Originally Posted by StudFreeman View Post
    I agree with you about output versus runtime: 47s should consider instituting a timed stepdown to say, 70%. That would boost runtime a little and make the light more appealing to the average buyer (who are more likely to run this on alkaline cells).
    That's a really good point, actually. I had thought a lower Hi would be best, but a timed step-down would also be a good idea. Given how hot the head gets on Hi, this would definitely seem like a light where it would be appropriate.

    Interestingly, I've seen some commentary on my YouTube channel that people find the new design "ugly". Maybe I've played too much tetris in my day, but I actually kind of like the grooved "brick" pattern on the light.
    Last edited by selfbuilt; 05-04-2013 at 12:34 PM.
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    Flashaholic* PhotonBoy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and

    Great review, as always! Thanks!

    A question regarding high mode and the use of lithium or rechargeable cells: would these cells damage the LED if run on high mode for extended times? Or another way of putting it, would the LED be damaged by high temperatures?

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    *Flashaholic* selfbuilt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and

    Quote Originally Posted by PhotonBoy View Post
    A question regarding high mode and the use of lithium or rechargeable cells: would these cells damage the LED if run on high mode for extended times? Or another way of putting it, would the LED be damaged by high temperatures?
    Hard to say. I presume Foursevens designed these to be able to handle routine use of L92 lithiums or NiMH on Hi without triggering damage to the LED or circuit. They have a lot of experience designing lights (and provide a good replacement/repair policy), so it stands to reason they are comfortable with the drive levels and heat.
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and

    I see two POUs: A regular CPF user would probably use Eneloops XX, which should give maybe 10 minutes more runtime on high, and 2 hours on medium
    Alternatively: Gifting, don't give alka-leaks. The gift recipient probably won't use too often, so Energizer EA92 makes the most sense. Probably little to no difference in runtime on medium, and extra runtime on high probably won't cover the price difference of L92 vs EA92.

    Maybe Selfbuilt will transition to Eneloops XX by '14...
    Last edited by MichaelW; 05-09-2013 at 06:39 AM.

  14. #14

    Default Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and more!

    Quote Originally Posted by selfbuilt View Post
    In terms of the runtime specs, there is again no mention of use of the ANSI FL-1 standards (which is time to 10% of peak output post 30 secs). However, using this standard, my NiMH results correlate fairly well with the reported runtimes. Alkaline runtime specs seem over-stated for my sample however, as I observed reduced runtimes compared to what they report. For example, I found 0.15 hours on Hi measured for Duracell alkaline (ANSI FL-1) on my sample, compared to the 0.4 hours Foursevens spec....

    Quote Originally Posted by Dubois View Post
    Interesting review Selfbuilt, thanks. Seems odd to me that operation on High with alkalines is so, well, short. I would have thought that this light is mainly targeted at non-flashaholic who will mainly use alkalines, and maybe be disappointed at the short runtimes on high. Not that that bothers me, as I'll use eneloops, but I just wonder if they have got this right.
    Thought more about Dubois' great point here, since I intend to gift this light to non-flashaholics that will probably run alkalines in this light and 9 mins to 10% sounds terrible vs its listed spec at 22 mins. So, as another data point, I ran a runtime test on the included alkalines (measured 1.61v), but at 30 second intervals to 50% and then 1 minute intervals to 10%, with 1 minute cool down/rest periods between runs. For one, I didn't want to cook my new light with a straight max run, and secondly, I figure the shorter interval max runs are more typical of real world usage and might allow alkalines to "recover" better.

    Like Selfbuilt, I hit 50% output at about the 8 minute mark, but interestingly for me, the alkaline's decline remained quite steady and I got about another 10 minutes before hitting the 10% output level, at which time the cells measured 1.3v. In typical alkaline fashion, turning the light on from rest brought back distinct LMH levels - I measured about 3/25/50 lumens (47s scale) - but after this 18 min mark, H would start nose diving in seconds.

    So, with interval use, the high runtime on Alks, seems..... well, just acceptable... and perhaps, with the human logarithmic light perception thing, a non-flashaholic might not notice the drop for a while. Alternatively, I might have to add an Eneloop charger and AAA 4 pack to my gift lights, which I've I done before, but this brings cost up $20.

    I would agree with the comments that it would be well worth dropping, or stepping down, the high output for better runtime on alkalines, given the likely target market and use of alkalines.

    Still loving the form factor of this light though.... haven't returned to my usual AA/14500 EDCs yet ;-)

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    *Flashaholic* selfbuilt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Quote Originally Posted by reppans View Post
    So, as another data point, I ran a runtime test on the included alkalines (measured 1.61v), but at 30 second intervals to 50% and then 1 minute intervals to 10%, with 1 minute cool down/rest periods between runs. ... Like Selfbuilt, I hit 50% output at about the 8 minute mark, but interestingly for me, the alkaline's decline remained quite steady and I got about another 10 minutes before hitting the 10% output level, at which time the cells measured 1.3v. ... So, with interval use, the high runtime on Alks, seems..... well, just acceptable...
    Interesting results, thanks for sharing. Yes, it stands to reason that interval testing would give you better performance out of the alkalines. This is certainly consistent with how people actually use the light, so it's quite useful information to have.

    Of course, runtime testing standards are for continuous runtime, so that's really how manufacturers should report these things.

    Personally, I'm quite liking the styling and interface of the light. I would be consider it a good choice for gifting in this 2xAAA space - although I would personnaly include a set of NiMH eneloops of L92/EA92 lithiums in the package. This is how I give away 1xAAA keychain lights as well ... I don't recommend people use alkys.

    P.S.: I wait until the duraloop NiMH and chargers go on sale around here, and stock up ahead of the holidays. I can typically get a charger with 2xAA cells (albeit China-made LSD, not the duraloops) for <$8 when the sales go on. Ditto for the four-packs of AA or AAA made-in-Japan duraloops. Make a nice add-on gift.
    Last edited by selfbuilt; 05-06-2013 at 02:13 PM.
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    the runtime looks excellent.
    hmm the design. somehow it looks cheap to me even though you said the build quality is excellent. maybe it's the packaging or the color of the light. i guessed around 40usd before reaching the end of your review. interestingly there was a "good deal" for the olight version for 35shipped which i think is worth it.(deal might be dead)
    still a nice review

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    Post Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    I really liked the review very much. Though only the build quality can be actually checked when you have it physically otherwise this equipment is for sure the deal breaker. hair salon Annandale, VA
    Last edited by LocoBurns; 05-31-2013 at 11:07 PM.

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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Very nice visual improvement over the original Preon P2. The new version looks more like a pen, and even a tactical one at that. I'm surprised that Foursevens didn't consider a screw-on bezel system. You could have a standard chrome/steel one, a threaded "cap" to completely seal off the glass for protection, a crenelated bezel for more tactical use, and even a hardened pointed tip attachment for striking purposes.

    Anyway, it's great that the light is now current controlled and PWM is gone. I hate PWM! However, I'm saddened that strobe is gone because I find it is handy sometimes. I've had a number of occasions where I'm in a crowd at night and trying to get someone's attention, so I put my Fenix L0D in strobe mode and I am quickly noticed (I don't point it at them--I strobe the top of my head!).
    Lights in my rotation: Nitecore EA4 | Surefire U2 | Novatac EDC-120P | Olight M20 R5 | Fenix P3D-Q5, PD30. L0D-Q4 | Regal WT1 | Pila GL3/D26

  19. #19
    *Flashaholic* selfbuilt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Quote Originally Posted by LocoBurns View Post
    I really liked the review very much. Though only the build quality can be actually checked when you have it physically otherwise this equipment is for sure the deal breaker.
    Not entirely sure what you mean, but in this case, my estimate of built quality is based on a comparison to other lights I've personally handled (including the original Preon P2). While styling is of course a matter of personal preference, the new Penlight feels sturdier to me,with better threads and better switch feel (compared to the P2).
    Full list of all my reviews: flashlightreviews.ca. Latest hobby: whiskyanalysis.com. Latest flashlight review: Thrunite TN42.
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  20. #20
    Flashaholic* xevious's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Quote Originally Posted by selfbuilt View Post
    While styling is of course a matter of personal preference, the new Penlight feels sturdier to me,with better threads and better switch feel (compared to the P2).
    These are two factors that help satisfy me over getting fewer modes. Have you taken apart the head at all to see how it is put together? Any hope of future emitter swapping?
    Lights in my rotation: Nitecore EA4 | Surefire U2 | Novatac EDC-120P | Olight M20 R5 | Fenix P3D-Q5, PD30. L0D-Q4 | Regal WT1 | Pila GL3/D26

  21. #21
    *Flashaholic* selfbuilt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Quote Originally Posted by xevious View Post
    These are two factors that help satisfy me over getting fewer modes. Have you taken apart the head at all to see how it is put together? Any hope of future emitter swapping?
    The head appears to be loctited, so I haven't opened it up. I'm sure it's possible to, with enough force and typical tricks (i.e., heating/freezeing).

    Hopefully Foursevens will come out with a Neutral White XP-G2, while should take some of the pressure off DIY mods ...
    Full list of all my reviews: flashlightreviews.ca. Latest hobby: whiskyanalysis.com. Latest flashlight review: Thrunite TN42.
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  22. #22
    Flashaholic* Derek Dean's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Another splendid review, selfbuilt. Thanks! I agree completely with your observations... including that it makes more sense for a lower level high mode, giving us better efficiency, less heat, and longer runtime. While I do understand the manufacturer wanting the brightest Penlight around, it would have been more useful to make this a 5 level light, with Turbo, High, Medium, Low, and Moonlight modes, especially since they have included mode memory.

    In any case, I love the beam profile, and with the addition of a tiny orange filter on the front glass cover (held on with a tiny piece of double-sided tape), the tint is nearly perfect. My only issue now is how to make the penlight a bit "grippyer", as it feels kind of slippery the way it is.

  23. #23
    *Flashaholic* selfbuilt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Quote Originally Posted by Derek Dean View Post
    My only issue now is how to make the penlight a bit "grippyer", as it feels kind of slippery the way it is.
    Yes, I suppose that could be improved. I actually find this light pretty decent for grip - but that may be because I'm also thinking in terms of pens (many of which are more "slippery" than this Preon Penlight).
    Full list of all my reviews: flashlightreviews.ca. Latest hobby: whiskyanalysis.com. Latest flashlight review: Thrunite TN42.
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  24. #24
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    I'm really liking mine. I'm not sure why. I feel like I don't have a real use for it, but I'm really enjoying it. Perhaps I didn't know that I actually do need it! At first I hated the switch, now I find it works just fine. It rides in my suit coat front pocket. I find it sags my dress shirt pocket too much.

  25. #25

    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Quote Originally Posted by WilsonCQB1911 View Post
    I'm really liking mine. I'm not sure why. I feel like I don't have a real use for it, but I'm really enjoying it. Perhaps I didn't know that I actually do need it!.
    Well put Wilson, this was a real "sleeper" light for me - never liked penlights before, certainly didn't "need" one, and I wasn't expecting much. But this light just grows on ya..... still haven't returned to my usual 14500 EDC lights yet. Even using mine camping - floody beam works great for hands-free on my head/neck band rigs (just wish it had a moonlight mode).

  26. #26

    Smile Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Thanks for a very thorough review, as usual. I have been considering purchasing this light. However, based on the information you provided, I think I will spend my cash on a different light.

  27. #27
    *Flashaholic* selfbuilt's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Quote Originally Posted by thousandpointsoflight View Post
    Thanks for a very thorough review, as usual. I have been considering purchasing this light. However, based on the information you provided, I think I will spend my cash on a different light.
    Thanks for posting. People often write in when they find a review valuable in making a purchasing decision - but I am always glad to hear when they have been valuable in helping someone decide not to. My goal is to provide objective data and analysis, so its good to know that was of value to you.

    And
    Full list of all my reviews: flashlightreviews.ca. Latest hobby: whiskyanalysis.com. Latest flashlight review: Thrunite TN42.
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  28. #28

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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    I bought one of these lights a month or so ago...I carry a scanning device in a holster at work, and it has a couple slots for pens. I was using one of them for my Penlight, and I had a couple problems with accidental activation. It is fairly quick and easy to hit the switch, and even to switch modes (can cycle through all three modes in less than a second) and a couple times my batteries got mostly drained before I realized it was on. With that in mind, I decided to start carrying it locked out with a quarter turn, and only tighten it when I was about to use it. Two days later, I looked down, and the cap was missing...I was looking at the negative terminal of the battery (somehow this stayed in place, even after the cap fell off). This was an expensive mistake. Apparently the threads aren't nearly long enough to securely hold the Penlight, unless it is fully tightened. Something to be aware of...hopefully this won't happen to anyone else.

    Any idea if you can buy just the cap/switch part? $50 for a Penlight was bad enough once, but I just can't see paying another fifty just to get a replacement tail cap.

  29. #29

    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    I have the olight version of this, and I agree that the switch is very easily accidentally activated.

    however I'm a bit puzzled on your lockout issues, when you say the cap fell off do you just mean the switch bit?, mine will not lock out using this but easily does unscrewing in the centre 1/4 a turn and there is plenty of safety Martin here with several full revolutions being required before the halves separate.

  30. #30

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    Default Re: Foursevens Preon Penlight (XP-G2, 2xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOT, VIDEO and mo

    Quote Originally Posted by greeny1 View Post
    I have the olight version of this, and I agree that the switch is very easily accidentally activated.

    however I'm a bit puzzled on your lockout issues, when you say the cap fell off do you just mean the switch bit?, mine will not lock out using this but easily does unscrewing in the centre 1/4 a turn and there is plenty of safety Martin here with several full revolutions being required before the halves separate.
    No, it was a lot more than just the switch. Almost half the light is lost...the clip, upper half of the battery tube, and the switch portion (all one piece) fell off. I thought there was plenty of threading, too, but apparently not. That's why I wanted to warn people about the potential issue.

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