Adjustable beam flashlights?

farmer17

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Nov 9, 2008
Messages
92
I have a 3D Maglite and when I adjust the beam it never looks that great. I can set it for optimum throw and there is a little swirly thing in the hot spot, and when I flood it more the beam looks even worse. When its set on total flood it doesn't look too bad, but it seems like a high quality fixed beam that can NOT be adjusted would be better. I hear a lot of guys say they like the adjustable beams on their Maglites so am I missing something? Do you tolerate a crappy beam because its adjustable and flexible for different uses or do I just have a bad one? Are there other lights whose adjustable beams are as high quality in all settings as a good fixed beam light?
 

waterboiler

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Joined
May 26, 2006
Messages
120
Location
Great White North
I have a couple of Led Lenser ( P7 & P13 IIRC ) that do a great job of beam adjustment. The lights are simple electronically ( no regulation ) but fantastic optically. The P13 is 3D, so runtime is not really a concern. but is about the same size as a 4D Mag. Output is about 200 lumens on CREE LEDs, I think. The lights are big, probably to accomodate the focus optic system but short of a possible upcomming light from Surefire the best focus system going. Prices sit around $60-$100 depending where you find them so they are well above Mag in cost.
 

Sgt. LED

Flashaholic
Joined
Sep 4, 2007
Messages
7,486
Location
Chesapeake, Ohio
On tight focus in a Mag you will see the filament.
I don't care for it inside on a white wall but it's a smooth reflector with a bulb in the middle, nature of the beast. Outside it works great.

As for adjustable options with really clean beams I have no experience.:shrug:
 

Marduke

Flashaholic
Joined
Jun 19, 2007
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10,110
Location
Huntsville, AL
The only problem is that most of the current lights which offer good focusing are very much lacking in most other aspects.
 

Guy's Dropper

Enlightened
Joined
Jul 30, 2008
Messages
386
Location
Southern California
I still like the adjustable doughnut beam on my Maglite. Inside, the imperfection is really obvious, but when I want extreme flood or throw, it's completely worth it. The adjustable beam is the one reason why my 4D incandescent Maglite still sees use. It can function well as both a throw light and a flood light. Of course, I could probably carry 2 different led flashlights that would fulfill each role more effectively, and I would be less encombured, but then I'd have to buy them, and I'd loose the pretty beam color.

Ok, really, I'm just trying to be satisfied with what I have, but that is not working. The truth is, I am saving up for a led drop in and a stippled reflector.
 

toolpig1

Enlightened
Joined
Dec 10, 2007
Messages
232
Location
NE Ohio
I find adjustability much better on led's, they don't suffer as much from rings and doughnuts the way incans do. My Mag-leds are actually quite good looking from tight spot to broad flood.
 
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