Pros & Cons of Surefire M3 & Z3

Sean

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Dec 11, 2001
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Of the 3-cell Surefires, which one is a better buy, the M3 (top of the line and most $) or the Z3 (lowest cost). I know about the C3 (HA is optional) but I'm leaning toward the M3. But I could save money by getting the Z3, plus I like the style of the Z3 a bit better than the C3. If I get the Z3 I would also buy the 200 lumen HOLA.

So if you had a choice between these lights which one of the 3 would you get if you were on a budget?
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I don't really want to spend the extra $$ on an M3 but I don't want to get the Z3 and regret it later. I know the M3 is waterproof, HA, comes with both bulbs (125 & 225 lumen)

1. So is the M3 worth the extra money?

2. Is the 125 lumen with pyrex lens on the M3 noticeably brighter than the Z3's 105 lumen bulb?
 

GeoffChan

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Aug 26, 2001
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G'day Sean,

I'll go with the M3. Its worth the extra money. I don't have an M3 (yet), but i've been told that Pyrex is a lot clearer.

Perhaps Al can say more about it.

Geoff
 
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**DONOTDELETE**

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I got E1,E2,M2,M3,M4. Guess what I use at work? M3!!!
 

Size15's

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I love the M3 because you can convert to the TurboHead version - the M3T.

Seriously, The M3 is a Master Light.

My M3 and M3T's use the HOLAs almost all the time. I love those beams!

IMHO, Anything other then HA is not an option if you want to use your SureFire.

The Shock Isolation is superb.
I don't worry about these lights. They are tough. Extreme abuse will see the filaments distort first in the LOLA from my experience, causing the beams to smudge and defocus rather then the lamp breaking.

The Straight filaments are more shock resistant - the N2 is a mean lamp - shame it's not double the intensity...

Please go for the M3!

Al
 

Carpe Diem

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Wisconsin
The best choice...?<UL TYPE=SQUARE><LI>The M3<LI>The M3<LI>The M3<LI>The M3<LI>The M3[/list]
 

kb0rrg

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Jan 12, 2001
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Renton, Wa
I don't have a M3, but I do have a C3. I thought about the M3 but did not get it for 2 reasons.

1. Price
2. Size

The M3 is too big for EDC IMO.

This may or may not apply to you.
 

Avro

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Jan 22, 2002
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I was thinking of buying the M3, but went with the C3 instead due to its length and bezel size. The C3 shares the same bezel size (1.25") as the G2/D2/D3/C2/Z2/Z3, which means that filters, beams shapers, holsters etc. can be used on multiple lights, should you purchase more. The M3 has a bezel size of 1.62", which is common only with the 9AN.

The C3 is also 1.55" shorter in length than the M3, which made a difference for me as well.

Avro
 

SurefireM6

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Oct 30, 2001
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I think there is a very noticable difference in light output when comparing the 9P and M3.

The M3 filters and opaque covers are built much tougher and better than those made for 1 1/2" bezels. They clamp on instead of just being pushed on and made of tough plastic.

The M3 costs alot more so it depends on what you want your light to survive I guess. I don't find the size to be a hinderence at all when carrying vs the 9P. In fact some days I go John Wayne style and just shove the M3 in my back pocket.

Also, the 9P lens will melt if you leave it on too long especially with the P91.

Like some previous posts, the only advantage the 9P series has is Cost and Size.
 

brightnorm

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by flexmodem:

.Also, the 9P lens will melt if you leave it on too long especially with the P91.
Like some previous posts, the only advantage the 9P series has is Cost and Size.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Flexmodem,

I agree that several of the various incarnations of the 3 x 123A lights are impressive, especially the M3. If I was a LEO, or in Special Forces, or regularly used my lights very roughly in a hazardous or highly problematic environment, I'm sure I'd be carrying the M3.

When I first saw and handled the M3 and other
beefed-up versions of multi-123A lights I was both impressed and slightly appalled. Impressed by their obvious toughness and their take-no-prisoners Robo-Cop beauty.
Appalled by their size, cumbersome profile and relatively heavy weight.

I also looked at the "classic" 9P. It was just as bright as the M3 (I'll take people's word that the pyrex passes slightly more light), but it was so sleek, light and tiny compared to the others that I could easily see it as an EDC light. Cost is not a major factor in my choice of lights since I have a highly prioritized budget, rather than a lavish one. Besides, I received the 9P as a gift. It's so small and light that I'm not even aware that it's on my belt, and the P91 lamp provides a remarkable amount of brilliant light.

I've never had a melted lens since I use all my tactical lights within their design parameters; never for an extended ON walking light. For that I use my UK Mini Q40 feeding on 4 Lithium AA's, which provide surprisingly bright light for 4 1'2 - 5 Hours; The longest run time of any 4x AA light.

Best regards,
Brightnorm

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Lonewolf

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Nov 1, 2001
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sean the one thing that is a must when buying a SF is to get the type III HA finish. You do want your light keeping that like new look forever don't you? So for that reason I wouldn't get the Z3 but I really like the C3. Just IMO.
 

brightnorm

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by 5BY5:
sean the one thing that is a must when buying a SF is to get the type III HA finish. You do want your light keeping that like new look forever don't you? So for that reason I wouldn't get the Z3 but I really like the C3. Just IMO.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

5BY5,

I agree that the HA is ideal, but I belt carried my classic 6P for years before I got mu Asp Taclite and used it moderately if not heavily and it still looks new, especially if I go over it with a damp rag occasionally. It must be that the nylon holster is very gentle on it. I'm sure that if I used it professionaly or roughly it would show it, but then I would get the HA version.

Best regards,
Brightnorm

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txwest

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Oct 30, 2001
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Houston, TX
I agree with Brightnorm. If you're going to put it through hell, get the HA finish. I have a D2 in black, M2 & M3. In 10 years, my D2 will look just as good as the HA models. But takeing care of my equiptment is very high on my priority list. So, If you're very hard on your equiptment & have the $$, go for the HA. If you take care of your stuff & have a limited budget, the standard light should serve you well. (I could never be a light tester)
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TX
 

Lonewolf

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txwest the difference between HA and regular finish is only $8-$10 not that big of a difference.
 
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