Inexpensive General Purpose Recommendation

Wurkkos

gloster

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Aug 21, 2012
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4
Just a watch fanatic looking for advice from the flashlight fanatics.

1) How would you prefer to purchase the light?

X____I will be mail-ordering or buying online, so this doesn't matter.


2) Budget: An easy question, but you may change your mind after answering the rest! :)

X____Less than $25.


3) Format:

X____I want a flashlight.


4) Flashlight-specific format/size:

X____I don’t care.


5) Emitter/Light source:

X____LED (known for efficiency, longevity, and compactness)


6) Manufacturer:

X____I want to buy a light from a traditional mass producing manufacturer that is ready to go out of the box.
X____I would consider getting a light that is pieced together (for example a “host” or flashlight body from one manufacturer, and a “drop-in” emitter from another source). Under the right circumstances, this path can provide more options to the consumer to meet specific needs, and can often be easily upgradeable as technology improves.


7) What battery type do you want to use?

I would prefer something I could recharge in my LaCrosse BC-700 charger ( NiCad and NiMH AA and AAA rechargeable batteries)


8) How much genuine out the front (OTF) light do you want/need? Sometimes you can have too much light (trying to read up close up with a 100 lumen light is impossible).

X____I want to walk around an unlit rural area (50-150 lumens).
X____I want to illuminate my entire backyard or a campsite (150-300 lumens).


9) Throw vs. Flood: At what distance will you be most likely to use this light? Select all that apply.

X____Less than 5 yards/meters (looking for something inside a dark shed/garage/basement)
X____5-20 yards/meters (check out a noise in the backyard)


10) Runtime: Not over-inflated manufacturer runtime claims, but usable brightness measured from first activation to 50% with new batteries (Measured on maximum output).

X____90-120 minutes (Runtime is moderately important, but still not critical)


Thanks for your help, Gloster
 

Gunner12

Flashaholic
Joined
Dec 18, 2006
Messages
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Bay Area, CA
Under $25 means you'll have to look at budget lights, and there are many good ones but also many bad ones too.

Look at Shinigbeam's offerings. The Romisen RC-G2 III could work for you. 1 mode 1 AA powered. The Hypertac P1A or P2A is another decent one, 1 AAA or 2 AAA and 3 modes.
Batteryjunction also has a few Terralux 1 AA and 2 AA lights within that price range and they seem good too.
The Thrunlite TI could also make a nice 1 AAA keychain light.

Out of these, the Romisen and Terralux lights can hit over 100 lumen.

If you don't mind buying Li-ion batteries and a charger, there are some nice budget 18650 lights around (xxFire lights).

:welcome:
 
Last edited:

gloster

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Joined
Aug 21, 2012
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If you don't mind buying Li-ion batteries and a charger, there are some nice budget 18650 lights around (xxFire lights).

Thanks Gunner. So, what would be a decent inexpensive 18650 type battery and charger and where would be a good place to buy?
 

Gunner12

Flashaholic
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Dec 18, 2006
Messages
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Bay Area, CA
I haven't used enough batteries or chargers to know what is really good or bad, or even which stores are good or bad. I'd look in the Batteries and electronics section and see what is usually recommended.

Go for something with decent tested capacity and a protection circuit. Personally I have a Ultrafire WF-139 charger and another cheapo 18650 lying somewhere. The WF-188 also looks ok, but I'd look at reviews and see what others say before buying.
 

ScaryFatKidGT

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May 19, 2011
Messages
906
Unless you can salvage some from a laptop I wouldn't cheap out on li-ions. If I were you I would get 2 AW 2600mah or Eagletac 3100mah 18650's the Pila IBC and a Jet-beam BC25.

U said you wanted to use rechargeable AA's how about the Fenix E11, E21, E40 or the Jet-beam BC series or the Olight i2?
 

Ezeriel

Enlightened
Joined
Jan 15, 2010
Messages
587
If you don't know your 18650's .. then don't buy a light that uses them on a whim.. stick to AAs

Fenix E series are nice lights

If you can bump up your budget another 10 dollars, a Shiningbeam Spark is a nice budget light
 

gloster

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Aug 21, 2012
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4
Thanks to both of you for the advice. I looked over all the ones you mentioned and ordered the Terralux LightStar 220 from BatteryJunction.
 

gloster

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Aug 21, 2012
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I thought lighting technology was moving so fast over the past few years that the products would have all changed. I'm surprised to see this light has been made for 4 years already. Or, is that a review of an older version? Just curious.
 

Gunner12

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Dec 18, 2006
Messages
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Location
Bay Area, CA
I'm not sure if the light has changed from then till now. It was a good deal then and probably still decent today but the LED is a bit old if the specs are right.

Not sure how I forgot it, but the Balder SE-1 is probably one of the better 1 AA lights under $25. Lighthound has the re-branded version of the light. Forward clickie, 3 modes, hard anodized.

I hope this doesn't sour your experience.
 

Ezeriel

Enlightened
Joined
Jan 15, 2010
Messages
587
I thought lighting technology was moving so fast over the past few years that the products would have all changed. I'm surprised to see this light has been made for 4 years already. Or, is that a review of an older version? Just curious.

Honestly, looking for the latest and greatest led is an addiction; one that is not based upon justifiable reasoning...


My go-to light, 90% of the time, is a Fenix LD20 with a Q5 led. I have far brighter, far newer lights with far better beam patterns,
but the differences are so minor, that I stick with the light I'm used to.
 
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