[Review] Fenix E20 v2.0 (SST20, 5500K, 250 lumens, 2xAA)

narmattaru

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for submission in the Reviews forum

Even though 18650 models dominate EDC flashlight segment, there is a time-tested category of flashlights that have been made for a long time and seem to be going on. I mean 2xAAA and 2xAAA models.

Yeah, this is a technologically stagnant swamp, where it is extremely difficult to come up with something new. And now, only five years after the first version of 2015, Fenix ​​E20 v.2.0 was released. New optics, almost twice less weight and one third brighter.
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PACKAGE AND APPEARANCE

Nothing new – the same black and yellow blister. In general, it looks pretty decent, without any hint of cheapness.

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In addition to the flashlight itself, the kit includes 2xAA batteries, an O-ring and a bunch of papers.
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The dimensions of this category of lamps are quite ambiguous. On the one hand, the Fenix ​​E20 v2.0 is slim, only 21mm. On the other hand, it is longer than the same S2 +, 127mm. However, in terms of length, the flashlight, in my opinion, still falls into the EDC category.
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The only thing that somehow stands out in the rather simple appearance of the flashlight is the "brass" bezel and the round TIR-lens underneath it. Otherwise, the flashlight looks, though not frankly budgetary, but quite simple
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The flashlight is controlled by a tail button with a deep, tangible click. Start always at minimum brightness, switching modes by (half-) clickstg. An extremely simple and logical UI , typical for this type of flashlights.
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There are spring at tail cap and a contact pad at head side.
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The threads are well lubricated.
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And, in general, in terms of knurling, everything is neat and good. True, as I said, there are no design miracles here, the knurling is the simplest in the form of many circles.
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Flashlights of this standard size are extremely often used as inspection lamps, they are attached to a breast pocket or a tablet (not electronic, but classic). So, of course, there is a deep, convenient removable clip. So, of course, there is a deep, convenient removable clip. Although, there are really few full scale brand models that dont have it.
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grip is firm and convenient, thanks to its small diameter and decent length
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The head is small, there is SST20 LED hidden beneath gorgeous looking TIR-lense. Fenix uses this lens quite often and this is justified – it provides both convenient light distribution and extremely ennobles even such a simple-looking flashlight like E20 v.2.
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In general, a fairly simple and laconic design without frills.

HOW FENIX ​​E20 V.2 SHINES
I can't help but pay tribute to the Fenix ​​- for all my complaints about them, they do not strive to install CW LED in each model purely in order to show the maximum brightness in the specification. Their 5500K color temperature is definitely comfortable for me. Well, if it was 5000K, it would be great at all. But this is exclusively a matter of taste. Someone would ask for 4000k, some for 6000K.
Even MID mode is enough to light up 5-7 meters with good detail in the open air. And the high with its 250 lumens gives enough light to shine through the surrounding bushes.
Important! Rutime is different from specs due to the fact that the batteries that i used in review are not new and their capacity decreased.
And here I would like to draw your attention to something that surprised me (in a positive sense)!
Light is fully stabilized! And it's okay in Mid, you may expect it.But even in HIGH as well! In the latter case, this will require cooling, which is surprising in itself. I don't remember any 2xAA model with thermal regulation. So in the presence of some kind of breeze or use in cold weather, you can expect an hour and a half or two (depending on the battery capacity) of a light that is quite practical in terms of brightness.
Well, Fenix, well done. I never expected from them.
Personally, my experience of use EDC flashlights proved that i rarely needed to climb above around 200-250 lumens. Everything below this treshold is enough to both illuminate the path in front of you, and for any sort of garage searches and indoor work.
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OVERALL IMPRESSIONS
In all regarding to its functional , the flashlight is definetely good. It has though not superb, but still pleasant brand appearance, it is itself convenient in size and grip. There are no complaints about light either – both light distribution and color temperature are comfortable.
And, damn, there is stabilization and thermal regulation! In AA size! Dont remember any similar product!

Recently, i got 3 flashlights for review from Fenix and each of them (LR35R, E30R and this one) suprpised me in good way. Keep on, Fenix.
 
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GreySave

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I have one that I purchased as a gift for a friend and have been putting through its paces prior to gifting it. Your runtime tests are spot on. I am working with a Fenix Rep because based upon my own tests it appears that they flipped the alky and NIMH run times when they printed them on the packaging.

Otherwise I like the light and the error, if found to be true, is not a deal breaker. It still does what she needs it to do and having an AA light is much easier than trying to educate her on the care and use of 123A and 18650 batteries...Plus cheaper for her...I may get one of these for myself as well.
 

Clay_Mine

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This is the first AA led flashlight from Fenix which looked suitable for my needs and picked it up.
I do notice that the runtimes for alkaline vs nimh are higher in favour of alkaline. Is this an error?
 

Swedpat

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Thanks for review!
I like that Fenix here release a model which is not overpowered with the need of a stepdown after a few minutes. And with good regulation. The mode spacing is good as well. Yes, the lowest mode could be 1lumen instead of 5, otherwise perfect.
I am a bit concerned about the UI; good it starts at lowest mode but with 4 modes it means several clicks each time you want med and high. But I think it's better than all modes memorised with too small gap between the levels to determine which is active when you put on the light. Which is a case with some other Fenix lights.
I also wonder about the grip: does the pattern on the body provide enough friction to prevent the light gliding away in the hand when you push the switch?
 
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Bill S.

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I've had the Fenix E20 v2.0 for over a month and like it a lot. Have used it often.
We already have a fantastic review starting this thread, and i couldn't come close to doing one like that.
What I like is the compact size for a 2xAA light, that the beam is nice - cool but without any green that I can see.
Feels very good in my medium-size hand.
I really like that there are no blinky modes I'd have to routinely bypass.
I love that it starts on low with no mode memory. And again, no blinkies. Good spacing with the four modes.
Strong clip for my use.
My only complaint so far, and it's a significant bummer for me: The Fenix E20 v2.0 does not tail stand. The clicky button is slightly rounded and protrudes a little bit from the frame. If the light did tail stand I would love it. In fact, since the tail cap screws off for battery replacement, if Fenix would make an optional flat button in a tail cap for this one I would buy that tail cap in a heartbeat. And then buy a few more E20 v2s with the replacement tail cap for each. Any chance of an optional tail-standing tail cap, Fenix? Please?

Nice light. Enjoy.

B.
 

defloyd77

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I'm quite intrigued by that optic. What do they mean "coated with Al+UV"? Aluminum and a UV protective coating?
 

Swedpat

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This is the first AA led flashlight from Fenix which looked suitable for my needs and picked it up.
I do notice that the runtimes for alkaline vs nimh are higher in favour of alkaline. Is this an error?

Alkalines have high capacity at low current draw so it can be the case at low and medium modes, but usually not at higher modes.
 
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MaxIcon

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Jun 19, 2006
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Very nice! I just bought some E12 V2.0s, and like them quite a lot - this has better runtimes and a 4th much brighter mode, which is great. The E12 is my favorite AA flashlight in years.

There's a post in one of the E12 threads about the ability to return to low mode from any mode with a long press of the button. Does the E20 do this as well?
 

pantagana23

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Hello narmattaru,
Thank you for this review.

I was looking for a 2xAA flashlight with to load with Energizer Lihtiums and drop in my cars' glovebox indefinitely, until needed, and this looks ok.

If I might ask a favor: could you test this light with Energizer Lithium primaries on Mid?

I would be really interested in this, as I'm searching for a light that could get as close as possible to 10 hrs with regulation (no illumination drop) on 130+/-20 lumens.
 

cave dave

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...

There's a post in one of the E12 threads about the ability to return to low mode from any mode with a long press of the button. Does the E20 do this as well?

I have to count to 1,2,3,4,5 to get it to revert to low. A quick count to 4 gives me the next higher mode. I would rather have the revert happen in a single 'one-one thousand" count.
 

cave dave

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One thing I didn't appreciate till I got it in the hand was how small the new E20v2 is.
Here is a picture next to some other lights:
Left to right: Quark 2xAA, Fenix E20v2 2xAA, Quark 2xCR123 or 16650, Wurkkos 2xAAA, Quark AA

ACtC-3dNSsGkbPoupRY567seEKW5GcFpWFYYTnPjeI_FAEQV6X5g4I78uIVxHLxsgVzYsu3ALxkdL4R4tjnc5OFh8S9eeeKU4xa2UiW-MKq7uk3OKIcebnqRrSULaWpigsC-RI3VFMjqtNDjRkIljM3pDsc5=w800-h600-no
 

Stefano

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I have to count to 1,2,3,4,5 to get it to revert to low. A quick count to 4 gives me the next higher mode. I would rather have the revert happen in a single 'one-one thousand" count.
Thanks for this information.
I have tried, I confirm that it works.
 

strideredc

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Dec 13, 2006
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UK
This looks a brilliant light :) I wish I had this instead of my cmg infinity back in 1999=2002 when I went traveling around Se Asia.... those were the days :) ..... I used that light to navigate rainforest in pitch darkness!

Dismiss the single AA at your own peril! it's going to be around for years to come... I would rather have this than any sealed cell or strange
cell size usb rechargeable light even if it is 1000lm++++++ not for home fun use but an lightweight travel application or even work light.. I have packs of 20 AA duracells in my van as my Fluke multi meter and label printer take them...
 

strideredc

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My travel light now and has been since I got the first hds edc 60 just that with a couple of rechargeable 123's and a nano charger (still working!) , some primarily 123's in a SC3 surefire carrier.... I am now on a hds twisty or clicky in 200lm those have been across the planet with me... but being older you have time or money (younger time older money). I have the money out of that trope so traveling unless its working away is no more than 4 weeks 😞
 

Stefano

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Alkaline batteries will be banned in Europe by 2024 Only rechargeable will be allowed.
I wonder if the Eneloops will increase or decrease in price due to this.
Yes, E20 is a nice flashlight. I have two of them but the color of the tint does not convince me, it is a strange hybrid.
Perhaps Fenix should have chosen a 5000K white tint.

@Narmattu - Thanks for this review, I only read it today
 
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