Surefire K2 Kroma reveiw

kudu

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Oct 5, 2006
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I purchased one of Surefire's new Kromas a couple months ago and have had the enjoyable task of testing, using, and enjoying it under a variety of circumstances. The time has come to write a reveiw that I hope will be helpful to those of you contemplating the future purchase of the aforementioned illumination tool.

The first thing you will notice when you remove your new Kroma from it's package is that it is a very asthetically appealing light. I really like the choice of the black type III hard anodizing, as opposed to the more common olive drab variety. Black anodizing has a much more executive appearance. The fit and finish are fantastic, coupled with the lines and overall porportions this light looks more like a piece of art than a utilitarian object. Don't let this fool you the light has plenty of performance to back up it's good looks.
This unit is activated by a twisty switch with the standard momentary on feature and the lockout system. After my previous unsatisfactory experience with the clicky switch on my U2, I found the twisty's reliability to be very reassuring.

The Kroma has six settings that make this light the most versatile that I have ever used. I will start with the primary light. It is a Luxeon III LED that has two settings. The low beam is about what you would expect from a typical 2 D cell flashlight, it is great for general purpose close to medium range work. Just twist the tailcap a little further or press the tail and your light will issue forth 50 lumens of bright white light. The beam characteristics are great. I see very few artifacts, and the beam on both low and high power are tight with lots of throw. The only complaint I have here is that I would like Surefire to start using the Cree LEDs and make this light put out 100 or more lumens on high. The technology is out there to do it and that would make this great light even better, especially as a tactical tool. The Luxeon III is focused with a condenser lens that gleams like a jewel when you look in the window.

Three milimeter LEDs encircle the Luxeon and they are for the color settings. The red color has two settings. The low red is .52 lumens, this is not very bright at all. It is enough to find a keyhole in the dark, or to check your watch. This setting would be most useful for someone who wants to be inconspicuous. This discreet light is probably the setting I use the least but in some situations it could be very useful. The high red is 6.3 lumens. This is probably the setting I use the most when I am walking at night. It's wide flood beam is great for lighting a dark path. It is plenty to allow you to be able to walk with confidence in the darkest of places. Red will allow you to retain your night adapted vision. Most animals cannot see in the red color spectrum so this light is great for hunters who want to discreetly find their way to their hunting spots before first light, without spooking their quarry.

The Kroma also has two settings of blue light. When I first purchased this unit I didn't think I would use the blue settings very much, but I have found them to be surprisingly useful. The low setting is .48 lumens, and the high is 3.4. Like the red, the blue is a flood type beam. The blue appears to be much brighter than the red. Even the low blue is enough to making walking in the dark easy, and the high is quite bright. Blue is especially useful to hunters. Blood shows up very well under the blue light. I tried this when tracking a deer and compared the visibility of the blood under the different colors of light. Blue was much better. I believe this is a great variety of settings for people who participate in the outdoor sports. It seems that there is a setting for any purpose.

The Kroma is 5.5 inches long, just a little large for comfortable pocket carry, but because of the many LEDs in the bezel it is probably impossible to get it much smaller. The belt clip is situated in a way that allows the light to be carried bezel down. I have always believed that bezel down is the only civilized way to carry an illumination tool. Afterall, would you carry a gun in a holster with the muzzle pointed straight up?
Overall I think this is an outstanding light! The Kroma is an elegant instrument for the sophisticated flashlight afficianados, and a rugged do it all outdoor tool.
:sold:
 
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