Where have all the Arc enthusiasts gone?

LEDninja

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It was no surprise the Fenix L1P was the flashlight of the year in 2005. What surprised me Arc was #9. [EDIT Final results moved up to #8.]
When I 1st came across CPF 2 years ago Arc was all the rage.
6 months ago PG introduced the Arc AAA rev 4 Premium and there was much enthusiam.
So where have all the Arc enthusiasts gone?
 
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nerdgineer

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For me, the enthusiasm for lights remains but the landscape has changed.

2 years ago, the Arc LS and AAA were high quality and UNIQUE, far removed from the next comparable lights. But now the rest of the field, particularly pretty good quality, professionally designed Chinese lights (a la Dorcy, Fenix, Nuwai, et al), have closed the gap and provided many interesting and lower cost alternatives in each category of small light. So the Arc AAA remains a very high quality light, but my enthusiasm has spread out over a lot more lights than just Arc.
 

MicroE

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Time marches on. Arc made great, unique lights and I bought a lot of them. Then they went bankrupt and lost their technological edge.
Now they need to bring out a totally new light in order to return to the flashaholic limelight.
 

GhostReaction

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My ARC is still my faithful EDC, that travel with me everywhere in my pocket.
However other companies are catching up fast and cheap! Wouldnt be suprised if my ARC replaced with a cheaper, better AAA light.
Fenix AAA with a K2 :D
 
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Double_A

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I bought 4 or 5 when it was alone in it's field, same with the LS & variations. I've probably spent $500 on Peter's lights.

But I wait for a AAA Luxeon, I'm patiently waiting for Peak's Ocean right now.

Iif Peter makes one I will come to his door, cash in hand.
 

Ray_of_Light

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I still have three Arc-LSHP, three Arc4+, a number of Arc-AAA, plus some accessories.
They still are great lights, with the exception of the Arc4 due to the switch. At the time being, they were the "cream of the top", and we paid accordingly.
Consider that Arc pioneered the use of Luxeon LEDs in flashlights, and the problems with tint and flux, at the time, were much worse than today.
Also, they improved the concept of a light with a single cell with step-up converter, that led to the Arc-AAA. The step-up was used previously, in the CMG Infinity.
I also liked very much the engineering part of the flashlight: precision-machined bodies, and a lot of care in the design of the electronics, usually seen, at time, only with SF LED lights.

I also believe, and please consider this only my opinion, that the use of the control a-la-Arc4, with a uP and single button, is not what is wanted, or needed, in a flashlight.
Brightness, runtime, reliability, efficiency, small size, beam shape and uniform spectral distribution, together with "simple" access to brightness adjustment, are of paramount importance.
May be we will see the next revolution of flashlights with RGB Leds. For the time being, I would like to have a switch "flood-spot" on my flashlights...

Anthony
 
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Deanster

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I'm another former Arc enthusiast - I showed off my LS lights, and my LSH-P on a twisty remains a go-to light. I had three Arc AAA's, and I liked them, but I got all of them at sub $20 prices, or as part of an ARC xmas package. At full price, they're nice, but very expensive.

Ultimately, the Arc AAA is a fine light, but the concept is four+ years old, and while v4 is an upgrade, it's not the kind of thing to get flashaholic hearts beating fast.

OTOH, Fenix with the first truly bright 1xAA Luxeon, JIL with the best production 1xCR2's, a universe of 1x123 lights in petite sizes, plummeting prices on coin-cell lights, etc. have all overtaken the Arc AAA a bit. You can buy an awful lot of EDC for what an Arc AAA goes for, even more for a -P model.

Finally, Arc began to loose its luster a bit from the moment they introduced the Kroll clickys - what had been the CPF fave for ultimate reliability became a quality and reliability problem that then continued through AAA's and the Arc4 - an awful lot of people paid premium prices for products that didn't quite work out as expected. I have the highest regard for Peter's committment to quality and customer service, and he's always done a great job coming through for people, even when it cost him more than we'll probably ever know, but I vastly prefer to not have to sample the customer service at all. I bought my last Arc before christmas 2002, and since then, I've moved on - Arc AAA's are still on my wife's keychains, but mine has a Jil DD, a Jil 1.3 or Fenix L1P have taken the LS' place in my pocket, and for $30, I expect a Luxeon.

I'd love to be an Arc enthusiast again, but the product line would need to reflect Peter's reputation for innovation and excellence - I hope it does soon!
 

jayflash

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We're still here but there's little to discuss like in the old days 2 - 4 years ago.

I've yet to find an affordable light as well made or small like my LS/twisty combo that's enough of an improvement to buy.

I'm hoping the $35 I just spent on the AAA wasn't a mistake. I'm still EDCing one from two years ago but wanted a replacement in case I lose it.
 

powernoodle

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I'm still an Arc fan, and since Peter can't yet keep up with demand, it seems like lots of other folks still are too. I own about 20 of them, and a v4 AAA rides on my keychain. There is still nothing that matches its combo of function and aesthetic appeal.


44.jpg
 

JasonC8301

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I am a former Arc enthusiast and as said above, the Arc's have fell behind the times. The design is classic, but would have expected a Lux in the AAA by now, but it wasn't designed for brightness, more long run time. I have a Arc AAA LE, don't remember if it was Rev 1 or 2 but it is still alive and kicking. Just that the beam is really yellow and dim, still brighter than the Mag Solitaire though.

I am just a bit mad though, package said lifetime warranty and to my knowledge PG won't accept it because Arc is under a new name. Fine go out of business, just don't come back with a light thats VERY similar and not warranty a previous product.
 

4sevens

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I still decorate my arc4+ rev2 with titanium :D



Yeah, it was pretty bad of Arc to have died and come back and offer the same
blockbuster product.

They have the same name, same product (arc aaa), and same warranty claim.
But somehow previous "lifetime warranty" promises were conveniently discarded
through and LLC.
 
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JohnK

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I sold, or gave away my three ARCs.

I now key chain carry a Peak 3LED "snow" Hi-power Matterhorn.

A BIG step forward.
 

BentHeadTX

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I had 5 Arcs at one time, two Arc AA and three AAA lights
Lent out two of them (one was lost, the other never returned) The third one was a retirement gift and is still cherished by the person (massive upgrade from her Solitaire) Still have an Arc AA which is used for a power outage light which works well standing on it's tail and runs over 12 hours on a single AA battery. My Arc AAA with black body and single red LED I use for blackout conditions and it works great!
Then the Peak Matterhorn snow 3 LED AAA lights came out... you can have a white beam from a 5mm LED! The Arc AAA was replaced on the keychain and then upgraded with the Snow29 version running lithium AAA batteries. That combo gives me much brighter and whiter output with pseudo-regulation provided by the lithium AAA battery. I also like it's ability to be unscrewed from my keychain (for mouth use) and stand on end to make it more user friendly.
Arc came back with the brighter AAA V4 but with the same bluish, swirly beam quality. That made it a no-go as I prefer the tint of the snow LEDs. Never went with an Arc LS as it only used CR123A lithium batteries... no 2AA NiMH optional body.
Arc is kind of stuck now as far as Luxeon lights go... the Fenix L1P proves you can have plenty of punch from a NiMH or Lithium AA... or run it on alkalines when need be. In Arcs price range a Surefire can be had or a Peak Mediterranean with 2AA body and multiple tailpack options, different materials or magnet/clamp loc-line adapters. The Q3 brought LuxeonIII firepower at a very low price point, the two-stage modded switches soon followed.
HDS took the problematic Arc4 and ran with it... viola! A reliable flashlight with options of 4 levels at a lower cost or premium 85 lumen beast with perfect tint. Heck, they are going to put out 2AA or 2 CR123A bodies as an option soon to fit the particular needs or options of their customers.
The sad thing is Arc started the revolution then ran into legal problems, production problems, bad components in the ArcAAA and bet the farm on the Arc4. The 4-way problems at the same time was more than Arc could take but Peter hung out to the bitter end. With their crown jewel Arc4 being returned with bad switching, ArcAAA being returned for flaky operation and no product moving out the door killed them. This took the polish off the apple you could say.
It is now 2006 and the new Arc is doing well... Arc's "children" (HDS and Peak) are doing very well with advancements in technology coming in with the Ocean AAA Luxeon and HDS probably playing around with 100 lumen K2 Luxeons. Arc is behind the 8-ball in advancing technology but personally, I don't think Peter wants to make bleeding edge lights. His concept has been to have a keychain light bright enough, durable enough and have long runtimes with an AAA battery. The AAA V4 does what Peter says it is supposed to do but the market has split into several directions since the original came out. If you don't agree with the compromise of an overdriven Nichia LED VS snow29 or Luxeon, there are other options available.
CPF'ers tend to be very bleeding edge when it comes to flashlight technology and Arc is not bleeding edge. It is an amazingly durable light but lacks the buzz of say, the Fenix L1P, HDS U60, Peak Ocean AAA or JIL lights. There are many more manufacturers and many more price points considering two years ago.
Maybe Peter is quietly producing Arc AAA V4 lights and doing research on a new Arc AAA K2. I would guess high/medium/low variable output through a SWAH K2 Luxeon for the premium and on/off for the standard. Knowing Peter, he is most likely playing with one and prefers to stay quiet about his latest creation. He was burned before and would prefer to keep it under wraps until the production line fires up. Saying something like "Prototype Arc AAA K2 puts out 2/10/25 lumens for 24 hours/5 hours and 1 hour runtimes. The light will be released in May 2006" That would stall the sales of his V4 version and kill the money flow when he most needs it.
Just pure speculation on my part but I would not be surprised if Arc snuck something amazing into the market during 2006. The Luxeon K2 is just too tempting not to wrap a flashlight around.
 

Planterz

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There's just not a whole lot to talk about right now with Arc. The old stuff is old technology and has been surpassed. The only thing Arc has going now is the AAA, which is a great light, but hardly new. I'd like to see a 1W keychain light from them.
 

photo2000a

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BentHeadTX said:
I had 5 Arcs at one time, two Arc AA and three AAA lights
Lent out two of them (one was lost, the other never returned) The third one was a retirement gift and is still cherished by the person (massive upgr........



<<<truly amazing response BentHead, i am saving this as a reference thanks for taking the time

:)
 

rikvee

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Oct 12, 2004
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"Where have all the Arc enthusiasts gone?"

I'm right here, ARC's stand-out quality made me fall in love with flashlights and discover this forum.
I have an LS on my keyring, with 4 spares, thinking that'll do for the next 40 years, if I may live that long....
 

357

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There are better products out there in the Arc-4 class. The HDS EDC series is by far better than the Arc-4 my opinion says (more consistent quality, more reliaiblity).



While I have Arc AA and AAA lights, I just don't like them or use them too often. The tints are bad even on the Premium models my opinion says (compared to luxeon tints), and the output is only useful for inside navigation--too dim for using outside. I'd rather just carry a slightly larger luxeon light.




The exception is the Arc LSHs, which I still feel is the best light in its class / price range. The Longbows, Nuwai QIIIs, etc. just don't satisfy me as much as my LSHs do.



So, if the "new" Arc comes out with an LSH model, I'll buy it....but I don't have desire for the new AAA models or for a reinvented 4+ model (unless it is better than the HDS are).
 

TIP AND RING

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I still use mine daily. Like many forums I frequent, keeping up with Mr. Jones is very important, no exceptions here at CPF. And like a few forums I frequent there is a undercurrent of hate as well. Use the search feature, there are many similiar threads on this same subject as this thread. Constructive criticism...maybe.....
poke2.gif
 
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