Brief review: EagleTac PN20a2 (2xAAA)

eggsalad

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Mar 30, 2013
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268
Some folks may remember I bought this EagleTac to replace my dead Fenix L2T. This won't be a highly technical review, but here are some general thoughts:

For a 2xAAA, this light is really bright. I'm impressed at how much the tech has improved since I bought my Fenix.

The beam is very, very flood-y. I'll eyeball it at at least 70 degrees. At 1m, the beam is approximately 80cm wide. There is a doughnut-shaped hot spot in the beam, 20cm at 1m.

(For my uses, this is WAY too broad of a beam. I find myself shielding it often to provide some cutoff. In my imaginary world, I think if all the output was focused in to a 30-40 degree beam, it would be brutally bright, and absolutely amazing for a 2xAAA.)

The low beam mode isn't very low. I didn't put it on the light meter, but it really isn't as dim as I'd like. The Fenix had a much lower setting, which was more useful for my needs.

The switch was very stiff on arrival, but after 2 days' use, it's fine.

No noticeable dropoff in output from the Energizer NiMH rechargeables in 2 days. I'm sure they won't last as long as the AA did. I'll report back after the first time I need to change the batteries.

I love the really light weight. The build quality seems good.

In short, if you don't mind a wide beam, and a really low "low beam" setting isn't necessary for you, this is a pretty incredible light for the money. I'll make this light work for me, but I really wish I had more information going in - that's why I decided to do this review.

Thanks for reading,

eggsalad
 

defloyd77

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By donut shaped hotspot you mean there's a dark hole in the middle, right? Which LED does your light have?
 

Moonshadow

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Jan 31, 2009
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Scotland
Just compared mine against both a Preon 2 and a Preon penlight. The spill portion of the beam on the PN20a2 is significantly tighter than on both the Preons. The hotpsot is a bit tighter than the Preon 2 and significantly tighter than the Penlight. No donut here either.

You mention a 20cm hotspot at 1m - that's about what I've measured here. I think your estimate of the beam angle is a little off though: an 80 cm spillbeam at 1m is actually a 44 degree spread, not 70. This is actually pretty tight for a light with such a small reflector, so I'm wondering if you've compared it against any other lights ?
 

Phaserburn

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Mar 30, 2003
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Connecticut, USA
I find that some diffusion film makes this light a perfect penlight. I want soft no edges/spot flood from a penlight.
 

defloyd77

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May 10, 2007
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Location
Wisconsin
I find that some diffusion film makes this light a perfect penlight. I want soft no edges/spot flood from a penlight.

These used to come with a diffuser cap, a swappable tailstanding cap as well.

No donut hole on yours moonshadow? There doesn't seem to be any beamshots other than the old XP-E version unfortunately.
 

eggsalad

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Mar 30, 2013
Messages
268
Update on batteries and voltage regulation...

An interesting thing happened as I approached the 1 week mark. I've been metering the batteries every day to monitor battery life for this review. Friday, when I got to work, I turned on the light, saw no visible change, then took the batteries out for metering.

One of the NiMH batteries had gone dead. Zero volts. (It happens. Batteries are downcycled to flashlight users after they have done duty in wireless microphone transmitters, so it's not like they're brand new.)

Okay, so I have zero volts in one of the AAA, and the other is at about .987v. So we're talking under a volt in a light designed to run on 2.4-3.0v. I put in a new pair of AAA, fresh out of the charger, and there was no visible change in output.

The downside is that I have to start battery life testing again. But I am truly impressed with the voltage regulation in this light.
 
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