Looking for a 'consolidated' EDC+Headlamp flashlight

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dmenezes

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Hello everyone,

I currently carry 2 lights with me[1]:

EDC: iTP A3 EOS[2]: 1xAAA, fits really well in my belt pouch along with a spare Eneloop AAA in a small battery holder; I like its very small size, robustness and reliability, don't like its head-twist switch, would like tail standing and some more lumens.

Headlamp: Vekkia White/Red 3xAAA: on a side pocket in my cargo pants along with a spare set of 3x Eneloop AAAs in an attached battery holder; like that the Red LED can be activated with a separate button without having to go through the White LED first (which would ruin my night vision when I'm stargazing), don't like that its 2nd Red LED came DOA nor that it sometimes turns on in my pocket on its own (and then the batteries are gone when I need it).

This has been my setup for the last 5+ years (the EOS more like 12+ years), and now I'm looking for a new flashlight that can act as a replacement for both of them.

It ideally would, in rough order of importance:

a) Be as robust/reliable/durable as my iTP A3 EOS;

b) Be able to be used on hand as a normal torch, or mounted in a headband for use as a headlamp;

c) Have a red LED, or at least an attachable red filter on front so as to be able to use it for stargazing;

d) Work with a single rechargeable AA, and if possible accept a 14500 for more lumens/endurance (I have a ton of AA eneloops which I rarely use anymore, and a couple of 14500 totally unused); Would also consider other compact battery types like RCR123As (no non-rechargeable CR123s please) or 16340s. 18650s would be too large to carry on my belt pouch, and non-removable/non-standard batteries like the ones in the USB flashlights are an absolute no-no for me.

e) Have *no* strobe/blink mode, or at least one that can be avoided when activating the non-strobe modes;

f) Have at least 3 main modes: low (5-10 lumens), medium (50-60 lumens) and high (at least 100 lumens, but the more the better).

g) Be difficult/impossible to turn on accidentally while inside my belt pouch;

h) Have a lateral/head/tail clickswitch (instead of head-twisting as it's very hard to operate with one hand);

i) Reasonably good color fidelity/CRI (at least as good as my iTP A3 EOS, which I think is good enough);

j) if it has a red LED, then be able to activate it without having to go through the white LED first;

k) Be able to stand on its tail;

l) Cost as little as possible, without compromising any of the above (realistically I'm willing to spend up to USD 100 on the flashlight and additional batteries/accessories needed to accomplish what I need);

I've researched matters on Google, CPF and Reddit, discovered the flashlight database at http://flashlights.parametrek.com/ (are there any others?) and so far I was only able to find 1 candidate:

Fenix LD15R: seems to tick all the boxes, only minuses being the 16340 battery (I prefer AA/14500 if possible) and the apparent impossibility of activating the red LED without activating the white one first; the light itself is a reasonable USD 55 on Amazon[4], and adding the (rather expensive at USD 28) Fenix headband[5] plus 4 of the manufacturer's 16340s for another USD 28, would total USD 111, which is more than I wanted to spend but not prohibitively so. I'm wary of the strong magnet it has on its tail; can it be easily removed? would it interfere with a magnetic compass (either a conventional one, or the ones embedded in smartphones/dedicated nav/GPS units? At which distance should I keep a compass for it to be safe?)

I also saw a lot of white-LED onl lights like the Fenix HL10/HL50, Jetbeam HR10, Zebralight H32/H32w/H53c/Fc/w/Fw/H502 etc, but was not able to determine whether there's a red filter attachment available for them. How better to find out about that?

Can you folks recommend any other flashlights, other sources of information and/or help clarify any of my questions, I would be much obliged.

Thanks in advance!

[1] Apart from the cheapo CR2032 coinlight last-resort-only I carry on my keychain;
[2] Don't have a link for it as I purchased it on eBay and the item's page is long gone; it was a special, unmarked model supposedly from a run for law enforcement, its "high" mode is more like 100 lumens than the 150 that are quoted for current models, and it doesn't have the blink mode (which is great because I hate it).
[3] https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B019MK6DX6/?tag=cpf0b6-20
[4] https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07BKXMX7C/?tag=cpf0b6-20
[5] https://www.amazon.com/dp/B001NZO85O/?tag=cpf0b6-20
[6] https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/prod...u_16340_lithium_ion_battery_with.html/reviews
 
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dmenezes

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I wonder why I got exactly zero replies from this, while my equivalent post in Reddit /u/flashlights received a whole bunch.

Did I do something wrong (posted in the wrong subforum, bad topic, post too long, etc)?

Thanks in advance.
 
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DRW

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dmenezes

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We knew you already had a bunch of replies on reddit.
Good try :), but I only posted in Reddit after many hours without any replies here, and then started getting replies there almost immediately... that's why I think I did something wrong.

Wait... perhaps you meant you knew I would post there and get many replies *before* my doing so??? :D
 
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Lynx_Arc

Lynx_Arc

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I read your post but when you said you want AA and red and removeable headlamp I don't know of such of a thing. All I know of is 18650 and headlamp not removable. I've done stargazing before but back then there were no LEDs with incans of very low output rather unusable so you had to go red. My dad bought some red bulb dip or something like that and made an incan light. I wonder if a sub lumen white LED light would work instead of red LED for stargazing.
 
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dmenezes

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Thanks to everyone who responded here, much appreciated.

Today I was browsing through the forum and found this: https://www.candlepowerforums.com/forums/recommend-me-a-light-for.135/, seems a much more appropriate place than opening a new topic here like I did.

I'm 99.99% decided on a Manker E03H II (please see the reddit link I posted above), but I will try and repost on the other subforum above in order to try and get some final impressions.
 
Stefano

Stefano

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You could consider the Fenix HM61R in the Czechoslovakian "Amber" version which allows you to have red light with a double click from off.
If slightly higher weight and dimensions do not scare you, you could also consider the Fenix HM70R (red reachable with a double click from off) but it is not at right angles.
 
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dmenezes

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@Stefano, many thanks for the info on the Czechoslovakian "Amber" version, definitely better than the standard Fenix HM61R which I understand has to go through the white mode first before activating the red.

In fact, with that feature it would become my #1 option, surpassing the Manker C03H II by 14.5 to 14 points in my evaluation spreadsheet.

Pray tell, do you know where this Fenix HM61R Czechoslovakian "Amber" version is available for purchase, preferably online and in the US?
 
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dmenezes

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you could also consider the Fenix HM70R (red reachable with a double click from off) but it is not at right angles.

Had a look at it, besides not being right-angled, it's for headband use only, no?
 
Stefano

Stefano

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@Stefano, many thanks for the info on the Czechoslovakian "Amber" version, definitely better than the standard Fenix HM61R which I understand has to go through the white mode first before activating the red.

In fact, with that feature it would become my #1 option, surpassing the Manker C03H II by 14.5 to 14 points in my evaluation spreadsheet.

Pray tell, do you know where this Fenix HM61R Czechoslovakian "Amber" version is available for purchase, preferably online and in the US?
A simple online search will offer you various options. (search: "Fenix HM61R Amber"
It all depends on whether they ship to the USA
 
Stefano

Stefano

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Had a look at it, besides not being right-angled, it's for headband use only, no?
Exact is used with the band.
But if you want, keep it in your hand.
There is also a smaller version with 18650 battery which is called HM60R but I would prefer the larger model.
 
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dmenezes

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A simple online search will offer you various options. (search: "Fenix HM61R Amber"
It all depends on whether they ship to the USA

I did! And the price was not bad, but they were all in Czechoslovakia (makes sense as it's the "Czechoslovakian" version).

Too bad they aren't available in some place more "main stream" (even in Europe like Spain or England), the added logistical complications to buy it from Czechoslovakia (to say nothing of delays and added shipping cost) would push it back down to 13 points in my evaluation spreadsheet, and back again behind the Manker.
 
Stefano

Stefano

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Amber versison has a neutral tint and red light that is activated with a double click from off.
If you can't get it you can do this:
When I use the HM61 and I do not want to lose the night vision I press it with the lens against my shirt, I turn it on without detaching it from the shirt.
Then I press for 1 second to change the mode from white to red, the 1 lumens red light turns on and I pull it away from the shirt.
 
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dmenezes

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I do something similar with my iTP A3, covering the lens with my palm while switching from off to moonlight (which unfortunately has to go though Medium). The shirt/chest would work even better, specially with a right-angled flashlight. Thanks!
 

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