Looking for a 'consolidated' EDC+Headlamp flashlight


Newly Enlightened
Oct 23, 2020
Currently in Chile.
Repost from my original here, after finding out about this subforum.

==================Flashlight Recommendation Checklist================

1) How would you prefer to purchase the light?
__X__ Will purchase Online, but location DOES matter: would much prefer it to be on Amazon.com, but a US Seller (on eBay or a reputable site) that can ship in such a way as to arrive in 5 of less days would also be OK.

2) Budget: An easy question, but you may change your mind after answering the rest! :)
__X__Up to $100.

3) Format:
__X__Other: right-angled flashlight that can double-serve as both an EDC and a headlight (see below for more info)

4) Size:
__X__Needs to be less than 4.2 inches (10.5cm) long so it can fit in my belt pouch;

5) Emitter/Light source:
__X__ LED (of course! ;-))

6) Manufacturer:
__X__Not very important, but something ready-to-go and from a manufacturer that stands behind its products (in case I need warranty, spares etc in the future) would be best.

7) What power source do you want to use?
__X__The ideal would be a flashlight accepting both AA rechargeable Eneloops, *and* 10500 lithiums. Will consider 18350s, 16340s RCR123As or even 18650s if the light is less than 4.2 inches long; please no non-rechargeables nor custom/non-replaceable batteries.

7a) If you have selected a rechargeable option
__X__I have both a Miboxer C8 and a LaCrosse BC700 chargers, and my plan is to carry enough spare batteries along with the flashlight so as not to need recharging "in the field", so I need one with batteries that can be removed. If the flashlight also has a "non-cavity" way to recharge (eg, the magnetic attachment cables that the Armytek Wizard CR and the Fenix LD61R use), that would be a plus, but is not needed. I would rather avoid flashlights with "recharging cavities" like USB connectors lest they end up gathering dust, humidity, etc.

8) How much genuine out the front (OTF) light do you want/need?
__X__I need at least 3 different levels: (a) High with >= 100 lumens, (b) medium with 30-60 lumens, and (c) low with 1-10 lumens (these number are more illustrative than absolute hard limits).

9) Flood vs Throw:
__X__Never thought about that, but I guess a balance between flood and throw would be best.

9a) Distance: How far away will you typically need to see with this light (check all that apply)
__X__Less than 1 yard/meter (reading, other close work)
__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)
__X__30-50 yards/meters (I have a big backyard)

10) Runtime: Not over-inflated manufacturer runtime claims, but usable brightness measured from first activation to 50% with new batteries (Measured on maximum continuous output).
__X__On High: 30-60 minutes (I have plenty of batteries just ready to be changed)
__X__On Med: 2-4 hours
__X__ On Low: as much as possible, but not really important.

11) Durability/Usage: Generally the old phrase "you get what you pay for" is very accurate for flashlights.
__X__Critical (when I need it, I *really* need it);

12) Switch Size, Type, and location (choose all that apply):
__X__I want a forward clicky (Helpful for momentary activation and signaling).
__X__I want a body mounted switch (near the head, like on a Maglite).
__X__I want a tail mounted switch (found on the majority of today's high end lights).
__X__Please, *no* twisty switch nor anything too hard to activate with just one hand.

13) User Interface (UI) and mode selection. Select all that apply.
__X__At least 3 modes (see above), please no blink/strobe (or at least one that's really out of the way)

__X__Anodized Aluminum – either type II or III (Hard Anodized) (Aluminum, specifically HA, is the most common material/finish for today's higher end flashlights).

15) Water resistance
__X__IPX4 (Splash resistant) or more (the more the better);)

16) Storage conditions
__X__It's going to live in my belt pouch, and will be used at least once a week.

17) Special Needs/extras: Is there anything else you want or need that hasn't been mentioned? Select any/all below.
__X__Red filter (for preserving night vision).
__X__A dedicated red led would be even better.
__X__Clip and headband (see notes below)

Notes (from my original post):

I currently carry 2 flashlights:

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

========================== Further notes:

After a long discussion on Reddit, I'm about 99.99% decided on a Manker C03H II; so far I've carefully considered the Fenix LD15R/HM61R/HM50R, the Armytek Wizard CR, and the Wurkkos LD15R (to the point of making a SWOT spreadheet to register and total the relevant points for each one, according to my criteria above), but would love to hear about other competitive flashlights that I might have missed.

Thanks in advance!