My EDC: Surefire E2e, Surefire E1e+KL1 or Arc LS?

kimchikungfu

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Mar 21, 2003
Messages
196
Location
Sweden
Hello everyone!

My first post! I am brand new to this forum, so my apologies if this topic has been up in the past (I couldn't find a similar thread in the last year's postings though):

I'm considering one of these three models for EDC purposes:

1. Surefire E2e
2. Surefire E1e+KL1
3. Arc LS

Here's how I'm thinking: I want a bright and sturdy light with a good compromise between flood and spotlight. I also want it to be small enough to carry in a bag or a jacket (not necessarily pant pockets, unless I'm out hiking in which case pocket size is not a concern). Runtime is not a primary concern since I don't mind carrying a few spare batteries, but consistent output is (hence the two regulated LEDs on my shortlist). It also needs to have good overall quality of materials and build.

Well, this is what I think I know. There are a lot of things I don't know:

*Does the E2e bulb ever break? What if I drop the light on a concrete floor?
*What's the bulb life expectancy with normal use and care?
*Are these three models equivalently water proof?
*Are there different versions of the Arc LS currently available, or does an Arc LS always mean you'll get the same light regardless of where you buy it? I'm a bit confused after having visited the Arc forum.
*Are there any upcoming revisions or new models worth waiting for? I would prefer to buy my light as soon as possible, so any added value has to be significant.
*Are there any additional models I should consider for my shortlist?

Any comments, suggestions and answers to these questions would be greatly appreciated!

Oh, one more thing: I can only buy *one* of these for the time being, but feel free to suggest a strategy for adding to my collection /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif

Lars
 

WaltH

Enlightened
Joined
Oct 30, 2001
Messages
536
Location
Florida, USA
I would add the Surefire L1 to your list to investigate.

I have never experienced an E2e bulb breaking or blowing but given that it is a bulb it is a possibility. I believe Surefire rates the bulbs for 20 hours or so. I know I have an E2e with more than 20 hours on it and it's still very white. You might want to look at the LOLA (low output lamp assembly) for the E2e as it gives you 150 minutes of runtime at a diminished output...about the same as a 2D flashlight. I would not call any of the lights waterproof at this point...but very water resistant.

As for the ARC...I really like the LSH-P (LS High Dome Premium). ARC is also going to be releasing the version 4 at some point which I think would be worth waiting for. Ah, I see you said you want to purchase as soon as possible.
I would say go for the LSH-P, or the SF L1. Both are LED so you don't need to worry about bulb breakage. Both are single 123 battery so economical. The ARC is smaller, but the L1 has 2 power settings.
 

SilverFox

Silver Moderator
Joined
Jan 19, 2003
Messages
12,449
Location
Bellingham WA
Hello Lars,

Welcome.

Good luck on only buying one light. There are rumors of people going without eating to be able to afford another light.

Your list is excellent. Buy one of each...

Bulbs break and burn out (carry a spare). LED's vary in color tint (it is more consistent in the Premium models, but they cost a bit more).

I have an ARC LSH-P and also purchased a 2 AA battery holder for it. I love this light.

If you are interested in a combination light (LED and bulb), the A2 seems like a good choice.

You need to spend some extra time searching on beam shots of the E2e and E1/K1 and ARC LSH-P. From others comments you should be able to get a feeling of what light is good for you.

Good luck.

Tom
 

Byron Walter

Enlightened
Joined
May 21, 2001
Messages
202
Location
Stow, OH
*Does the E2e bulb ever break? What if I drop the light on a concrete floor
*What's the bulb life expectancy with normal use and care?

----------

Yes it breaks and the life of the blub varies considerably so it is very hard to project life expectancy. Others have reported that their bulbs have handled concrete impacts but a led is likely to do much, much better.

----------

*Are these three models equivalently water proof?

----------

I think that the E series are 'water-resistant'. You can improve the water-resistance by careful o-ring care. Arc's web site states that the current LS lights are water-proof to 50 feet.

----------

*Are there different versions of the Arc LS currently available, or does an Arc LS always mean you'll get the same light regardless of where you buy it? I'm a bit confused after having visited the Arc forum.

----------

If you check out the Arc site (www.arcflashlight.com) you will note that you can order various LS's with hand-picked Luxeon Leds. This is pretty nice since those one watter's tend to vary considerably in lumens and color temps. You will proabably have a problem trying to figure out just which LS a dealer is selling unless their website specifes the particular variant.

As you've probably noted, the KL1 Luxeons tend towards the blue end of the spectrum. This really bothers some folks here but I actually like 'em that way.

----------

*Are there any upcoming revisions or new models worth waiting for?

----------

There's really nothing wrong with any of the models you are presently looking at so don't worry about the next great thing!

----------

I would prefer to buy my light as soon as possible, so any added value has to be significant.

----------

Here's the deal... you mentioned hiking which suggests that you might be better off with a led and the associated reliability. If you go the E2e/KL1 way you will have a great incandescent and led light (with the KL1). Since size is not too important the E2/KL1 would be much better due to runtime considerations. This rules out the E1e.

But the LS will give you a great EDC with the 123 pack and an excellent hiking light with the 2 x AA pack. Likewise AA's are pretty easy to come by. This is such a tough choice that I did the only rational thing: got 'em both! And if you forced me to pick just one I'd probably just seize up and fall over.

----------

*Are there any additional models I should consider for my shortlist?

----------

Beats Me!
 

tkl

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Aug 24, 2002
Messages
2,332
Location
Tx
if you can only buy one, E2e hands down. very bright and very compact, carries in the pocket well.

if you can get two, the E2e + KL1 is better than the arc in my opinion. it has a pocket clip and runs much longer than the arc. i had an arc lsl-p(hand picked) and wasn't very impressed. for an hour run time why not have the white light of an E2e?
 

freewheelin'

Enlightened
Joined
Oct 29, 2002
Messages
252
Location
RedOak, Tx
I really like my E2O, at 25 lumens its pretty good for almost everything I do and there always the option of putting in the E2E lamp for 60 lumens or a KL1 for led.
I first found this forum wanting 1 great light now I've got 20+ anf EDC an E2O, ARC LS, ARC AAA and a Scorpion for the dirty work. They are all great lights and so far none have failed.
BTW the ARC is great for finnishing off 123's.
 

this_is_nascar

Flashaholic
Joined
Mar 29, 2002
Messages
8,127
Location
Gloucester, New Jersey
[ QUOTE ]
tkl said:
if you can only buy one, E2e hands down. very bright and very compact, carries in the pocket well.

if you can get two, the E2e + KL1 is better than the arc in my opinion. it has a pocket clip and runs much longer than the arc. i had an arc lsl-p(hand picked) and wasn't very impressed. for an hour run time why not have the white light of an E2e?

[/ QUOTE ]

If you got only 1-hour of contant brightness with your LSH-P, then you had a defective one. All 3-of mine burn constantly bright (consistantly) for 2-hours and 5-minutes, before the drop-off begins.
 

mhejl

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Dec 12, 2001
Messages
92
Location
Ft. Worth, TX
Re: My EDC: Surefire E2e, Surefire E1e+KL1 or Arc

I've been using my original "pea green" LS1 w/ 2AA for camping for about a year. I've had an E2 all this time but rarely used it for fear of the $15 bulb blowing and the excessive battery consumption (I go on extended backpacking trips so I don't want to carry spare bulbs and batteries if possible).

However, I recently got an E2o with KL1 that has effectively replaced the ARC. With the incandescent head, the low wattage buld isn't much dimmer than the high output (just a tighter beam) and the added battery life is a plus.

Unfortunately, I got a bad KL1 with crappy beam/color. I replaced the Luxeon with a high dome and it's now the perfect replacement for the ARC - better run time, more "regulated", and no blut/purple/green tint.

So, given the crapshoot KL1 Luxeon quality, I'd suggest an ARC LS with high dome unless you can inspect the KL1 prior to purchase. After that, I'd skip the E2e (which also has a too short clip, IMO) and go for the E2o.
 

flownosaj

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 24, 2003
Messages
1,235
Location
Fayetteville, NC
I have the E2E / KL1 combo and love it. I can keep the 60 lumen lamp for blindingly bright light (my tactical illuminator) or switch it out to the KL1 when the batts start to go low.

If the 123 batts make you nervous, buy a dozen or so Surefire brand when you get your new toy.

I also have one of Dat2zip's sanwiches in a min!-mag. Awesome light and color on a BB 400 QL3. Cheaper than the Arc or surefire and much better color than my KL1.

-Jason
 

tkl

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Aug 24, 2002
Messages
2,332
Location
Tx
[ QUOTE ]
this_is_nascar said:
[ QUOTE ]
tkl said:
if you can only buy one, E2e hands down. very bright and very compact, carries in the pocket well.

if you can get two, the E2e + KL1 is better than the arc in my opinion. it has a pocket clip and runs much longer than the arc. i had an arc lsl-p(hand picked) and wasn't very impressed. for an hour run time why not have the white light of an E2e?

[/ QUOTE ]

If you got only 1-hour of contant brightness with your LSH-P, then you had a defective one. All 3-of mine burn constantly bright (consistantly) for 2-hours and 5-minutes, before the drop-off begins.


[/ QUOTE ]

i never did a runtime test on it, i thought full brightness was only an hour /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/twak.gif
 

Blikbok

Enlightened
Joined
Apr 10, 2002
Messages
898
I've gotta vote for the E2/KL1 as well.
I EDC a E1/KL1 in pocket, and keep an E2e/KL1 in my bag.
The price difference is negligable for the massive upgrade in incandescent light which the E2 offers with a simple head change. I find the E1/KL1 superior to the E1 beam.

I haven't used an Arc, so I can't comment.
 

llvo

Enlightened
Joined
Apr 9, 2002
Messages
210
Location
Hong Kong
I saw an Arc LSH-P. It is not much smaller than an E1e+KL1 while it looks better(it depends)and has LOTC(lock out tail cap)

Also, even E1e+KL1 is too small for me.
P.S. I'm a small guy with small hands

an original 6P(round bezel) is a prefect fit for me
 

TCPilot

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Apr 5, 2002
Messages
57
Location
Northern Kalifornia
I'm a big fan of my E1e+KL1 for EDC; it rides in the left-side large pocket on the cargo pants I've become fond of.

Although the ARC-LS 1-123 is a great light, I like the pushbutton tailcap...and since I have an old LS second, the KL-1 seems to put out a better quality of light.

The ARC-LS and E2e have both become my nightstand lights.

I've been away from the CPF forum for a bit, and will be anxious to get my hands on the new SF A2!

/TCP
 

revolvergeek

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 6, 2002
Messages
1,037
Location
Louisiana
Re: My EDC: Surefire E2e, Surefire E1e+KL1 or Arc

I have settled on an E2e with a MN02 for EDC. Runtime is not bad (2+ hours) with good brightness and throw. I have an E1 and a KL1, but the E2e just carries a little better for me.

I had an ARC LS. Great light, but I found it was sitting home and the E2e was going with me 95%+ of the time so I sold it off.
 

kimchikungfu

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Mar 21, 2003
Messages
196
Location
Sweden
Re: My EDC: Surefire E2e, Surefire E1e+KL1 or Arc

THANKS A LOT to EVERYONE who responded! It took me one day to get addicted to this forum (is that normal?). Unfortunately I haven't been able to reply until now and I apologize for the silence. I really appreciate everyone talking their time to answer my question though.

Well, like I said, I'm new to this field and so feel like I'm living on another planet (or at least another flashlight budget /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif Before I posted, I therefore did check a lot of websites and among other information found some great beam shot comparisons, as SilverFox recommended. There's a lot more to my prepurchase research than that though, plus there's always a greater chance for critical voices to sound in forums than on fansites /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif

So thanks in large part to your responses I was finally able to make a better informed decision. Before I share this decision with you, I have to say that it wasn't easy:

Most of you suggested buying either the E2e or the Arc LS. Not surprisingly, many of you thought I should get both, or even worse, all three! The E1e didn't get as much rave as I had expected though, perhaps because it was compared to those two particular lights?

In any case, I decided that I wanted more power than what the E1e could offer, so I removed it from the list.

Then, after Byron Walter clarified some of the differences between various Arc LS versions, I decided that the LS high dome premium was the one that was going to stay on my list, together with the E2e.

WaltH suggested I also consider the L1, so I did. It seemed like an interesting alternative. AFAIK the L1 is the only Luxeon LED equipped light with to settings. Is that right? Nice feature anyway! However, I found it a bit on the bulky side for a single lithium light, and perhaps more importantly, a bit EXPENSIVE! So off from the list it went pretty quick.

I then tried to look closer at price/performance for my remaining options:

For just slightly more than the cost of an Arc LS-H Premium I get an E2e AND a KL1 (and I could nearly throw in an Arc AAA as well). Sure, this has partly to do with shipping costs being much higher for Sweden than US, but still... Also, if I was to throw in the 2xAA pack for the LS, as Byron Walter and mehjl recommended would make a fab hiking light, the cost would rise even further.

But wait, how did the Arc AAA get into this? Well, I did some background checking on the Arc AAA, and was surprised to learn that there seems to be some kind of law that says you gotta have one of these on you, always. I'm not sure if this applies to Sweden, but will get one just in case (also, don't want to look suspicious next time I'm going through US immigration). But seriously, the Arc AAA seems so outstanding in its class I wish all choices were that easy /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif

Oh yes, back to my shortlist and an attempt to summarize:

Reading your replies, and browsing about other CPF threads I have come to realize two things above all:

First, when it comes to flashlights (and many other things) there isn't such a thing as "one size fits all''.
I actually did believe this just a few weeks ago. So go ahead; I know you all want to say "I told you so", right? /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif

Second, I can't believe the amount of flashlights some people around here own!??!

So after careful consideration I have therefore decided to go for the E2e and a KL1. As I see it, I sort of get two flashlights in one. I say sort of because it will allow me to experiment and get a better feeling for the differences between incandescent and LED lights. And as flownosaj suggested, I like the fact that it is possible to switch from the regular bulb to the KL1 once the batteries start to wear out.

I also have to admit that SF:s "rep" played a part in this. I have simply heard so much about SF:s that I had to buy one, no matter what.

There are a few remaining concerns though.
Water-proof to 50 feet or water-resistant? No tough choice there (if that was my only concern). I actually assumed the SF:s were water-proof. After WaltH and Byron Walter pointed out that they weren't, I checked the SF 2003 catalogue to verify. There they are referred to as "weather-proof". I'm not sure exactly what that means, but I interpret it as another word for water-resistant. Is that correct?

If so: just water-resistant?!? That's a significant drawback and very disappointing for a $80 flashlight, to say the least.

I still think the E2e will make a great EDC, but I have written it off as a serious hiking light ( I just don't get it: am I the only one who would want to buy a waterproof SF?)

Anyway, this fact plus its smaller size and weight makes the Arc LS indeed seem like a much better hiking light. I also visited the Arc forum, and was impressed by Peter Gransee's attention to detail and the unique costumer-manufacturer relationship he has managed to develop. I will definitely be a serious LS4 candidate when that comes out. I can even see it replacing the E2e as the EDC I carry on me. Perhaps an LS4 in the pants and an E2e in a jacket or bag could make for the ideal combo?

On the other hand, there are even better pure hiking lights. The Tektite Expedition 300 seems perfect for hiking. But it's too heavy to take on regular trips or travel abroad. Meaning I still need a small, light and preferably waterproof flashlight, and that's where the Arc LS comes into play again.

But that, as they say, is another (and much more expensive) story /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif

Again, thanks!
 
Top