Video review of the Glo-Toob FX

KevinL

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Here's a little review with a twist. Pictures don't adequately capture the modes of the Glo-Toob FX, so I've come up with some short video clips.

The Glo-Toob (I'll just use its initials - GT) is really cool and I think the FX version is worth it. It's a little tricky to get the timing right but with a little bit of practice you get good at it, same with most things. The seven modes are fun! It's also very bright, surprisingly so.

Initially, I had an idea of buying a GT to attach to one of my lights so that I could find it in the darkness, but it's a bit too bright for that. The tritium glowring that I bought recently fills that role better, it's bright, but not too bright especially in dark rooms, and it never needs recharging. On the other hand, when you need to be SEEN, the GT does the job so much better. It's also much more fun to play with the various modes, the tritium glowring just does one thing, and does not interact with you very much at all. That having been said each has its advantages and the time-honored CPF slogan of "buy both" does apply here.

I own a Photon 3 as well, with its whole array of features. The P3 is a little bit easier to program (cycle through the modes with one button for override) and can serve as a marker, but it's not as bright because in all fairness, it uses only one LED compared to the GT's cluster of three LEDs, and it is not designed to cast a 360 degree sphere of light.

Here the GT excels as a dedicated marker light, but it was designed for that, after all. The steel interior serves as both a battery compartment and the tapered edge acts as a reflector with a very unusual shape, bouncing light back off the cone while allowing some to escape up the side and illuminate the whole tube.

As for waterproofing, I gave mine a bath in the sink while it was turned on, and it does not appear to leak, considering that the manufacturer advertises it is useable as a diving marker light with a pressure rating of 3500m/11500ft. Definitely no controversy over whether this light is "waterproof" or not!

For the daring, you can drop it into your drink and make it look pretty. Clean it properly first, though.

Now, enough of my ramblings and on to the videos. You will need the DiVX CODEC (http://www.divx.com) if you do not already have it. This was done in order to compress the videos down to a size that is dial-up friendly.

Equal Flash (326KB)
Beacon Strobe (330KB)
Slow Strobe (290KB)
SOS (572KB)
Throb (314KB)

I have omitted videos of the 100% on and 25% on modes. Suffice to say that it is bright, and not so bright, but you folks knew that already.... /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif

On 100% mode, it is VERY bright. On 25% mode it could make a good nightlight, depending on whether you find the bright green a bit too bright.

The only other issue with the Glo-Toob is the unusual cells, but A23 cells should be reasonably easy to come by. Around me, supermarkets stock Energizer A23s, and they are actually cheaper than Energizer's own CR123s at retail price. "But we don't buy CR123s at retail price" - correct. Neither do you need to buy A23s at retail price either.

I got my Glo-Toob FX with all seven features from John C. (Surefireparts on ebay, jcciv on CPF) for a REALLY good price, and he also sold me some Gold Peak Ultra alkaline A23s at similarly discounted prices, definitely nowhere near what I'd pay at the supermarket checkout. I'm familiar with GP and their trademark orange and green colored NiMH, they rank amongst some of the better NiMH cells available. The GP3300 high-rate SC cell is particularly respected - they know how to build a battery.

PM him with what you need, your color choice and number of cells and he'll take care of it for you. Yes, he does ship international, my GT arrived today in a GPM envelope. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif
 

jtice

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May 21, 2003
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West Virginia
I have heard these arent really bright enought to see by, it light up a room, but maybe only a tent.
Is that true? Or do you feel it only useful as a marker?

Can you compare its brightness to a chemical glow stick?

Nice vids BTW! /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif

~John
 

ACMarina

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Sep 10, 2004
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Brookston, IN
From the one that I have, it would depend on the glow stick. the Glo-toob isn't lantern bright, and since the light is diffused you wouldn't even be able to say that it's as bright as a Peak light with 3 LEDs. I'd personally use it for a marker and nothing else. Of course, that's all I'd use a chemlight for, too; if I want light to see things, I've got more than enough other options. .
 

KevinL

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Thanks John /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif Hmm.. I played with it late at night in the darkness, you could navigate by this if you set it to 100% brightness. I tried reading the address labels and forms on the package it came in by holding the tube near the package (around 1ft) and I had no problem making out the labels. However, for this use, a more focused 5mm LED would work better, because the toob casts light in all directions, whereas for some things you would prefer a spot beam.

I have the green version, so it may appear brighter, because the eye perceives green brighter at night. Even the 25% level makes a really bright nightlight, almost too bright. I don't think it would make that great a lantern, there are probably other devices better suited to doing that, but in a pinch it would light a tent acceptably well. It has three 5mm LEDs, and is about as bright as you can expect three 5mms to be.

From what little I've seen of the 12-hour glowsticks, this is definitely a lot brighter. Can't speak for the 30-minute variety though. Reuseable, bright, programmable and smaller than the glowstick - great replacement and definitely recommended. Oh, and regulated, too /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wink.gif
 
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