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Thread: The Lite Review: Fenix PD32 2016

  1. #1
    Flashaholic mcorp's Avatar
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    Default The Lite Review: Fenix PD32 2016

    [For Submission to Review Subforum]

    Disclaimer: Light was provided for by FastTech for this review. No other compensation was provided.

    Packaging & First Impressions
    This is what the light will come with as shown below.
    The threads and o-rings were mildly lubricated. Threads were rather smooth and clean (no gritty feeling).
    Battery tube and clip are both not reversible. Hence, attachment of the light to a baseball cap for hands-free usage is not possible.
    The clip has sufficient tension to ensure that the light will stay clipped to any material to prevent the light from falling out.
    The tail switch requires more force than most normal forward clicky switches to activate and helps in preventing any unwanted activation of the light.
    Anodizing of the light is uniform without any missing specs, as expected from Fenix.
    Holster provided is of decent quality and should withstand day-to-day abuse without issue.
    Battery compartment holds a KeepPower 18650 3400mAh battery with sufficient room for a slightly thicker battery width. 18650 3500mAh batteries should be able to fit without issue as well.

    Front:

    Back:

    Sides:


    Box Contents:



    Quick Overview (Manufacturer Specifications)

    • LED: XP-L HI
    • Battery Format: 1 x 18650 or 2 x CR123a ONLY
    • Output & Runtime (with Fenix 18650 3.6V/3400mAh battery):
      • Eco (5 lumens / 260h)
      • Low (50 lumens / 37h)
      • Mid (150 lumens / 10h 25min)
      • High (400 lumens / 4h)
      • Turbo (900 lumens / 1h 55min)

    • Max Beam Distance: 240m
    • Beam intensity: 14,400cd
    • Waterproofness: IPX-8 Standard (2m up to 30min)
    • Impact Resistance: 1m
    • Dimension: 129.5mm (length) x 22.6mm (diameter)
    • Weight: 77g (excluding batteries)
    • Accessories Included:
      • 1*Holster
      • 1*Clip
      • 1*Lanyard
      • 2*Spare O-rings
      • 1*Spare Rubber Switch Boot

    • MSRP: ~$62


    UI (User Interface)

    UI for this light is perfect for Every Day Carry (EDC) as it is simple and straightforward to use.
    Switching ON and OFF is done by the main switch at the tail of the light. It is a forward clicky switch which also enables half press for momentary activation where necessary.
    Mode changing (Eco, Low, Mid, High and Turbo) can be done via the side switch. After the light is switched ON, a quick press on the side switch will cycle through the above mentioned modes.
    To activate the Strobe and SOS mode, hold on the side switch (while the light is on) for at least 2 seconds would enable Strobe. A quick press on the side switch will enable SOS and any further quick press will cause the light to loop between Strobe and SOS. Hold on the side switch again for at least 2 seconds to bring the light back into the previous mode (non-Strobe/SOS).
    Mode memory will remember almost instantaneously whichever non-blinky mode (Strobe and SOS are not memorized) the light is in.

    Form Factor
    For flashlights that are intended to use on a daily basis (EDC) and for possibly a long period of time, form factor is extremely important.
    This light fits a medium sized hand easily. Switching between overhand and underhand holding method wasn't an issue and its (lack thereof) weight certainly helped in it feeling rather well-balanced on hand.
    It fitting in the holster snugly as well as being able to tail-stand perfectly (even with the lanyard attached) without the slightest wobble is very much desired.







    Beam Style/ Beamshots
    For this light, the spill, corona and hotspot is somewhat predictable due to the fairly shallow Smooth Reflector. But due to the LED used, the beam is still sufficiently "throwy" for recognising items in the near to mid-range distance.
    The beam has a rather distinct hotspot with some slight corona and a fairly wide usable (perfectly round) spill. It also help that the XP-L HI is perfectly centred in this sample. There are some slight rings in the beam when whitewall hunting but not visible in real world usage.
    All of the beamshots taken below are done so with the following camera settings (1/3, F3.5, ISO100, Daylight WB). Some pictures have been adjusted slightly to depict as close as to what is seen in real life. The distance of the light from the door is 4.6m.

    Control shot:

    ECO (5 lumens):

    LOW (50 lumens):

    MID (150 lumens):

    HIGH (400 lumens):

    TURBO (900 lumens):


    Mode (Output) Spacing
    Mode spacing appears to be progressively brighter to the eye and the modes are well spaced enough to be able to know which mode one is currently in. With that in mind, TLR tend to view mode spacing as battery life indicators (amount of runtime left) rather than the specific output (lumens).
    It would be nice if Fenix would incorporate a lower ECO mode to one that is at moonlight level (sub-lumen or 1 lumen) for those bedtime runs or during which having 5 lumens is way too bright for the night-adjusted eyes.

    Tint & CRI
    Fenix usually does not disclose the tint (color temperature) and/or the CRI (Color Rendering Index) for the LEDs used in their light. For this light, a guesstimate would be in the 6000K and 70CRI ballpark. In any case, the tint is a pleasant cool white one without any purple, green or blue hues.

    Waterproofness
    The light was subjected to warm water submersion, followed by cold water submersion and left under room temperature running water tap whilst running on Turbo. No signs of water intrusion in the head, switch or body was seen.

    Lockout Capability
    No electronic lockout but mechanical lockout is possible when needed, like during transportation in a bag. A quarter turn (anti-clockwise) of the head or tail portion of the light will enable mechanical lockout.

    Summary
    To sum up, we believe that the most important part of any review is if given the chance to purchase the same light for our own EDC or to gift to our loved ones out from one's pocket (wallet), would we still do it?
    For this light, it is a resounding YES.
    Fenix hit a home run for this light and while its success might have been dwarfed a little by the PD35 series (PD35, PD35 TAC and UC35) lights, the PD32 2016 model is the perfect underdog that is able to tailstand perfectly, has better mode spacing and have the latest LED (XP-L HI vs XM-L2) offering.
    However, as mentioned earlier, we look forward to the day that Fenix incorporates a lower ECO mode into the PD32 for us moonlight lovers, like their Fenix CL25R. Until then, there are other lights that we have just for the midnight toilet runs and such.
    As with all gears, two is one and one is none.

    Stay safe,
    The Lite Review
    Last edited by mcorp; 11-07-2017 at 07:34 AM.
    The Lite Review (click for my Review website!)

  2. #2
    Flashaholic mcorp's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Lite Review: Fenix PD32 2016

    Hi!


    This is my first review for any flashlight so take it easy on me but do give me your feedback!


    As seen in my signature line, I am actually starting out to do reviews for one of my favorite hobbies and hope to expand to other areas eventually.


    A little history.....
    I wanted to create a website that could host all the reviews of some of my favorite products (read: man toys) and have in the LITE version.
    So more pictures and less words; but with all the necessary information a buyer/consumer would ever need.


    Well that is the plan and hopefully I have succeeded in that aspect.


    In the event that you would like to visit my new website, the direct link to this review is as follows.


    http://thelitereview.com/flashlights...2-2016-review/



    Do feel free to share the link to anyone who would benefit from this review.


    Cheers,
    The Lite Review (mcorp on the forums & Matthew in real life)
    The Lite Review (click for my Review website!)

  3. #3

    Default Re: The Lite Review: Fenix PD32 2016

    There was(?) a very informative thread at
    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...016-900-Lumens

    Had lots of views and comments, also referenced here
    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...=1#post4876697

    Maybe you can unearth it and complement your review or never mind
    Last edited by kreisl; 11-08-2017 at 08:01 PM.

  4. #4
    Flashaholic mcorp's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Lite Review: Fenix PD32 2016

    Quote Originally Posted by kreisl View Post
    There was(?) a very informative thread at
    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...016-900-Lumens

    Had lots of views and comments, also referenced here
    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...=1#post4876697

    Maybe you can unearth it and complement your review or never mind
    Appreciate the digging up of the archived thread for this light.

    Happy to see that others have the same sentiments as me regarding this light!
    The Lite Review (click for my Review website!)

  5. #5
    Flashaholic mcorp's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Lite Review: Fenix PD32 2016

    As a heads up, my second review on an excellent single AAA High CRI keychain light is now posted.

    Check out the second post to see where you can get a special discount code!
    http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...=1#post5151782
    Last edited by mcorp; 11-13-2017 at 12:03 AM.
    The Lite Review (click for my Review website!)

  6. #6

    Default Re: The Lite Review: Fenix PD32 2016

    Hi mcorp,

    First of all, thanks for sharing. You did a great job!
    Very specific explanation and nice pics.

  7. #7
    Enlightened tjdean01's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Lite Review: Fenix PD32 2016

    Great review. Thanks! I feel that this PD32 is a better light than the PD35 TAC due to its longer battery life, easier to find side switch, and ability to tailstand.
    Fenix TK45 & PD35 Tac, UltraFire EMR1 Rebel, LED Lenser 7637, Craftsman Luxeon K2, Maratac 1xAAA, 2xAAA, 1xAA Ti, 1xAA SS 90-deg, 1x10180 SS Peanut

  8. #8
    Flashaholic mcorp's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Lite Review: Fenix PD32 2016

    Thanks guys for the nice compliments!

    Hard at work to push out more reviews in the coming weeks..
    The Lite Review (click for my Review website!)

  9. #9
    Flashaholic* CelticCross74's Avatar
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    Default Re: The Lite Review: Fenix PD32 2016

    The 2016 PD32 now that I have had it since its release, actually IS in a class of its own. Slightly slimmer and shorter than the PD35 it is MUCH easier to EDC. Built like a tank as well. The 2016 PD32 is thermally regulated HUGE WIN. No it is not the NC GT XP-L HI P12 capable of 23k CD. That NC is actually LONGER than a PD35. The 2016 PD32 is an outstanding combination of compact EDC throw and output on top of thermal regulation. The GA cell is PERFECT for it.

    I also have the TAC. To my eyes the max output out of the TAC is so bright it is almost painful to look at. The tint out of the TAC is blazingly white. The TAC HAS to be putting MUCH more lumens out the front than advertised. The TAC's unique interchangeable UI ...actually DOES work very well. Still..the TAC is not as slim as the 2016 PD32.

    I tried many cell types in both of those lights to see if there would be an increase in output or run time. Boy was I wrong. CR123's, 16340's and the best of the best 18650's. End result? No visible change in output but both lights got VERY HOT VERY FAST using 2x sources. The GA cell thus far is perfect for them as well.

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