The all-inclusive, sticked, flashlight and other light source review thread

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The all-inclusive, sticked, flashlight and other light source review thread

Post by NT2C » Fri May 17, 2019 12:37 pm

I would like all future reviews of flashlights, lanterns, headlights, what have you that is used for illumination to be added to this thread so they are all in a central, easily searchable thread instead of scattered to the four winds. I will attempt to move any already posted threads that fit the purpose to this thread as I find them. (edit to add: I just tried this and there's a problem, older threads merged with this will come first in the thread because of age - checking other options) Let me start off with a review of my own about that NEBO Rebel flashlight/headlight... I posted this review on Amazon yesterday:

I really want to like this light because it has some good features but, for me, the negatives outweigh the positives and I'll probably gift this to a friend at some point. There are three major strikes it has against it for me but first, let me outline the good points.

Pros:

1) Excellent brightness, especially in "turbo" mode but also in "high".
2) Compact size - small enough and light enough that wearing it with the included (reflectorized) headband is mostly comfortable.
3) Magnetic recharging makes it simple to recharge.

And then we get to the cons, of which there are simply too many, including three major strikes that I'll list first.

Cons:

Strike 1) The cord on the magnetic charging base is too short (~ one foot) and non-replaceable. It's also made of a slippery, flat, rubbery material that's difficult to straighten out or twist. Since it's got a USB A on one end that's directional, being able to twist the cord to allow the USB plug to connect with a USB port that might be upside down or sideways becomes an exercise in futility. Unless the USB port you plug it into happens to face the right way, be prepared to just give up getting it to stand and just lie it on its side to charge.

Strike 2) Non-replaceable battery. The light uses what at first appears to be a standard 700mAh 16340 battery that should be user replaceable (because if you just used the light on high for its 2-hour runtime you probably still need light and don't have two hours to spare while it recharges) but which has a proprietary base on it to connect with the tailcap for recharging. Wrapped around the battery is a bright yellow sticker warning that it is not user replaceable and that damage to the light can happen if you try.

Strike 3) Exposed battery connections on the tailcap. While the center post connection on the tailcap is recessed far enough that dropping this light in your pants pocket full of change is probably quite safe, dropping it into a pocket with your keyring may not be. That center post isn't recessed all that far and the tip of a key could probably easily press against it, while the rest of the keys and keyring easily contact the other terminal. Having a high current electrical discharge on metal objects in your pants pocket is not fun.

Other lesser strikes:

1) No instructions. While the box itself has some pictures to show connecting the light to the charger and the different modes, there are no printed instructions in the package (or downloadable) telling you how to get into modes like turbo (long press) and strobe (double press).

2) Slippery housing! Except for a little knurling on the tailcap, the rest of the light is smooth and hard to hold onto with dry hands or gloves. The head, especially, with its weird flare, seems designed to slip out of your fingers.

3) Low isn't low enough. While the low setting (60lm) on this is probably great for extending battery life and lighting your way through an underground cavern, it isn't low enough to use without disturbing someone sleeping in the same room/tent when you need to get up in the middle of the night. A setting below low that was just 10 or 20 lumens would be helpful.

4) The box shows two ways of attaching the light to the headband, vertically and horizontally. To attach it vertically they expect you to use the clip to attach the light to the silicone/rubberized piece on the headband that you would slip the light into for horizontal use. All well and good until you wear it for more than a minute or two and discover the sharp metal tip on the clip cutting a bloody hole in your forehead. Don't try this at home kids, or in the field either.

Pics:

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Tailcap connections

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Battery base and inside of tailcap

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Battery type label

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Yellow warning label

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Opposite end of battery

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Mounted vertical

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The blasted edge that digs into your forehead
Nonsolis Radios Sediouis Fulmina Mitto. - USN Gunner's Mate motto

Sic quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit; occidentis telum est - Seneca the Younger, Epistles

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Re: The all-inclusive, sticked, flashlight and other light source review thread

Post by NT2C » Sat Oct 05, 2019 6:48 pm

Time for another NEBO review, this time, the Armor 3 model:

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The light is about the size of two cigarette packs, stood one on top of another and weighs a modest 7 ounces, with batteries. The batteries are 3 AAA batteries, which is surprising given the run times of the various modes. The packaging claims this can take a drop off a 6 story building (66ft/20m). Not having a 6 story building handy I couldn't test and verify that claim but I'm inclined to believe it, having owned other NEBO lights in the past. The unit also claims an IPx7 waterproof rating. The base of the housing contains a good-sized, powerful magnet that allows easy attachment to any ferrous surface:

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There's also a belt clip on the back that has a keyhole slot for hanging it from a nail or from a clothed human:

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The base of the housing also swivels, making it easy to direct light where it's needed. To change batteries you need to swivel the light and remove the battery cover with a small Phillips screwdriver. The screws are machine screws, not sheet metal type screws, and they thread into brass inserts in the housing. The screws are not captive though, something to keep in mind when changing batteries in the field where they might get dropped and lost.

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There are two main light sources on the unit, one on the end opposite the magnet which is a focused beam rated at 160-16 lumens (both the white and red lights are dimmable by holding down the switch when it's illuminated):

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And the COB light on the front face that gives a white, red, or flashing red light source:

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The white is dimmable from 360 to 36 lumens and the red is dimmable from 40 to 4 lumens. The flashing red is not dimmable which I think is a shame because there are a lot of uses I can think of for a flashing red light at reduced intensity, such as marking your campsite at night when making a latrine call or for keeping track of where people are in your group without blinding anyone. Dimming any of the lights increases its runtime, giving you as much as 24 hours run time on a set of batteries using the spot beam dimmed to the minimum level. No run time is listed on the packaging or in the instructions for the flashing red but their website says it's 2 hours. List price is $24.99 but Amazon has it for just $19.50

I like these lights and bought two of them, one for each of our vehicles.
Nonsolis Radios Sediouis Fulmina Mitto. - USN Gunner's Mate motto

Sic quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit; occidentis telum est - Seneca the Younger, Epistles

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