Nitecore MH12v2 for trail walking/emergencies

WYlightGUY

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I am a novice light aficionado, having a couple original Quarks, Zebralights, and one MDC 2A.

I am looking for another light to carry when out walking in the rural/suburban area where I live. I have been surprised by animals (coyote, fox, raccoon and something bigger I could not ID) and homeless folks camping in tree lines and culverts. I would like a torch that is 90% of the time a great trail illuminator (which I suppose means more floody than throwy), but have the ability to ID objects at distance/blind surprise attackers. Something having the ability to swap between a few levels, (like a mid/low for walking and a high for emergencies) would be perfect.

I asked about Malkoff and Elzetta models in a different thread, and was recommended to look at the HoundDog/WildCat or Bravo/Charlie AVS options. Those are nice, but quite expensive. The Emisar D4 line was also suggested. It is cheaper, but seems to get "hot" quickly. That is not something I favor.

So...I just came across this Nitecore which looks to have excellent power and the ability to charge internally. If anyone owns this torch, please share your experience as I would like to know if it fits my purposes better than these other options. Thank you.
 

3_gun

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A few helpful things left out of your question. How far do you consider "throwy" & how broad is "floody"? [A note, FL1 standard distance is based on .25Lux (natural full moonlight) so you're not really able to identify anything really] Size, do you want this as an EDC light? Runtime needed would be useful too as an hour of "flood" light use may drain a smaller battery/light to the point you'd no longer have a high for distance. How simple do you want the light to be, On/off or programmable like Anduril? Some newer lights have a duel channel set-up which allows a set of LEDs to be a flood light & the other set throw light(s) and a few allow BOTH sets to be used at the same time. [https://intl-outdoor.com/led-flashlights/noctigon-dm1-12-throw-flood-21700-26800-led-flashlight.html https://intl-outdoor.com/tint-rampi...-d4k-21700-edc-high-power-led-flashlight.html] Does it need to be just one light, you might be better served by a headlamp for flood & a hand light for throw.

Many different ways to get where you want to go
 

WYlightGUY

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Hi 3, thanks for your reply.

When I was recommended the HoundDog or WildCat, I immediately thought those were physically bigger than I wanted to carry. I would prefer something 4-6" long with a diameter of 1" or so. I don't want a large diameter head/police baton style light. I would like something easier to carry in the hand, and small enough to drop in a coat pocket.

Speaking of runtimes, 90% of the time I would be using the light to illuminate the trails/my immediate surroundings. I would like that setting to last a few hours. Yes, I would like the Hi setting also to be usable during that time in case of emergency. I have no experience with power sources other than 123s and rechargeable Eneloops, but am willing to learn/invest. That is one reason why i thought the self-charging MH12 would be worthwhile to consider.

As far as the interface, a simple low/high clicky would be nice, but if I could find a programmable setup that would work similarly (low/med/high click) that would be fine too.

Thanks for sharing your knowledge. There are so many options (builder/power source/interface/emitters/tints) that a novice like me is completely overwhelmed.
 

Hooked on Fenix

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I own a Nitecore MH10 v.2, essentially the same light with different buttons. The low at 1500 hours is great for long term emergencies. The 55 lumen low is just right for most trail hiking at night. The 300 lumen high has about enough runtime for an 8 hour work shift with plenty of light (you'll probably get spoiled using that setting all the time). The high has decent throw and doesn't drop down in seconds like brighter lights. I went with the MH10 v.2 instead of the MH12 v.2 because I wanted a light that could tailstand. I can aim it at the ceiling hands free in an emergency. If you want the light more tactical, go for the MH12 v2., but the MH10 v.2 is $15 cheaper and while it does only come with a 4 amp battery, I've found that with these lights, they have springs on both ends and easily accept unprotected cells you can get cheap for around $5 at sites like 18650batterystore.com.

I've found that hiking at night with a flashlight with throw will give you tunnelvision after awhile. That light does have decent flood, but it has okay throw too. Best to complement a floody headlight like a Nitecore HC60 v.2 with this light. Use the headlight to see the trail and the flashlight to see ahead in the distance and for the bumps in the night.
 

WYlightGUY

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Thanks Hook,

You are absolutely right about tunnel vision. I am thinking your idea of a 55/300 lum general settings in a "floody" hand held is very good. I am guessing the bump up to High would provide the extra "throw" needed to ID targets at distance, and/or blind attackers (feral or human).

I had someone just recommend an E4K. It has a momentary "Turbo" mode that I would fulfill the emergency throw/ID requirement. It also has a High =1050 lum, and a mid of 320. Nitecore rates the E4K at 4400 lum max, while the MH 10/12 are 1200 max. That seems like a HUGE difference.

I should note that I have come to really enjoy neutral tints with a higher CRI. From what I can tell, the nitecore offerings are on the cool side, with lower CRIs.

Lastly if I can find a US made light that matches my requirements, I would prefer it. This is not a deal-breaker, however. :)
 
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jon_slider

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Mar 31, 2015
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Beyond Clickies.. consider a Rotary Dial interface:

My personal favorite: Jetbeam RRT-01 stepless rotary:
if you want to use 18650, buy it with the 2 extensions
the offer 219c Neutral White, but unfortunately it is not High CRI, but I can change LEDs

for the Made in North America option
HDS 24 step Rotary
available in several High CRI LED options
 

Hooked on Fenix

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I have an E4K as well. While the user interface takes some getting used to, I'll tell you that is my edc light. Some things to note: 1. It requires protected 15 amp rated batteries. There are only a few manufacturers and they all cost around $25+ per cell. You can get away with using a 15+ amp rated unprotected cell with 3 Harbor Freight magnets on the end, but then you have to buy a charger. 2. There is no built in charging. The charge port is in the specialty battery that costs nearly $30 for a spare. 3. A battery with a built in usb charge port is a poor substitution for a built in charger or separate charger. (However this does make the light more waterproof as it has one less hole for water to get in). The battery is finicky charging in something above 2 amps. The battery may not recover from full discharge. You may need a separate charger to salvage your battery. 4. The user interface is wierd. Once you have it at the setting you want, it's best to leave it there unless you need to see something in the distance on turbo for mere seconds, in which case you hold down the button for turbo and release to go back to previous setting. 5. If you need a spare battery, an alternative option is to get the 80 lumen magnetic lantern/charger/usb charger kit for $35. Gives you a backup light, and a 15 amp battery that works in the more expensive lights.
All that said, it's still my favorite light. If you have to have a better tint, I'd suggest an Acebeam E70-AL in 5000K neutral white (plus a 15+ amp rated battery and charger). The E4K will be more compact though.

Edit: One thing to note is runtime on turbo. For the MH10/12 v.2, it will likely last around 5-6 minutes before you see any drop in output. Then it will drop somewhere in the 500-600 lumen range for the duration of battery life, maybe higher (depends on outside temperature). For a 4400 lumen E4K, it will only hold turbo at 20-25 seconds before it drops as low as it needs to to cool off. After running it on turbo for the maximum time, it might not go much past the 320 lumens setting until it cools down. At the 320 lumen setting for the E4K and the 300 lumen setting for the MH10/12 v.2, there is no drop in output until the battery is near dead. Above these settings, temperature regulation determines how long the light will stay bright.
 
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Lumen83

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Sometimes I walk on an old rail trail where coyotes are all over. Not so much homeless. What I like is a floody headlamp and a hand held light with a lot of throw. Using that combo is really handy for those situations. I find myself using mostly the headlamp and then hitting the trail with the handheld now and again in front and behind me.
 

340pd

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I walk for an hour pre-dawn every morning. I have a couple Malkoff MD2 with hi low ring. They have great runtimes and on low, trail walking is no problem. Setting the head position so it will allow me the just pull it back and it will go into high mode allows me the ability to instantly throw enough lumens to do what you are asking. I recharge once a week but with it mostly on low, I can easily go three weeks without a recharge.
I would call Malkoff and give them your requirements. Next you have to decide between cool or warm. That is a whole different topic.
 

Hooked on Fenix

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I used to go hiking with a Nitecore HC60 v.2 headlight for flood and a Nitecore MH10 v.2 for throw on about 15 mile hikes up Black Mountain in Ramona, CA. Got to doing the hike about once every 5 days to get in shape. The light combo was perfect for that pitch black dark trail of 6-7 hours of hiking. Unfortunately, I developed a movement disorder that started with hand tremors. Using a light with throw to see was giving me motion sickness as I couldn't hold the light steady. I switched to the E4K after that. It puts out an even wall of light that is much less effected by a shaky hand. I had to stop these night hikes when the movement disorder started affecting my legs. All three of those lights (HC60 v.2, MH10 v.2, and E4K) are very reliable lights to carry in the middle of nowhere.
 

WYlightGUY

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Thanks, everyone, for the help. Wow. There are so many choices. The rotary heads are an amazing idea.
 
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