Tag Archives: Flashlight

Get One: Fenix e12 V2.0

The E12 V2.0 by Fenix is proof that you don’t have to be the Biggest and Brightest to be the most useful. In essence, Size Doesn’t Matter. Not really when it comes to Lights that is. Okay, so the E12 is a compact little LED light powered by a single AA battery, that has proven to be far more useful for common tasks than it has any right to be. Small and Simple, sure… But at the same time, damn near perfect.

The previous Fenix lights I’ve reviewed are much larger by comparison, and by order of magnitude, far brighter. They project enough light to make even a Lighthouse blush. And that’s fantastic for the purpose of signaling for edgy superheroes or for hunting German Bombers over London… But sometimes you just don’t need to fire off that many photons. Like if you are in your office and drop a contact lens, or you’re trying to follow a cable under your desk… Or the supply closet is just too dim to read which printer toner cartridge you need because they all look the same and you have to actually read the code in small print and it’s not your job to find a ladder to change the lightbulb overhead… But I digress. No, that’s not oddly specific… just a plausible example, you know? Don’t judge me.

As you can see, the E12 isn’t as long or as girthy as the others. But it’s about how you use it… and it gets more play than the others because it’s never “Too Much”. It’s sized just right. And while the others use Rechargeable batteries, the E12 is only using a single AA battery type which is as common and basic of a battery as a pumpkin spice latte is in the hands of a white girl in October. I’m not judging, I’m just saying they’re everywhere. *Gestures around* Just look. Every line at the Grocery Store has them hanging there waiting for you. Every 7-11 or Quick Trip has them for you at 3:00 AM if you need them. And they’re cheap. You can buy a pack of 4 for the same price as 1 of another popular tactical-type battery that I won’t mention. It’s probably the most universal battery type on the planet. I was once in a place that didn’t speak English as a norm and when I said “Double A Battery” they still knew what I wanted and I got them. Now, just for safety sake, if you have to go to LA, bring an extra set of batteries just in case… you know?

But you’ll probably not need an extra battery… because at the Low Setting, that little AA battery is going to last 70 hours. Using the battery that came in the package with the light, the longevity was as advertised. With an ADVANCED LITHIUM, well, I don’t know… it’s still going strong and I’ve been using the hell out of this E12 because it’s become just so very useful. It’s replaced my STREAMLIGHT Pen Light that uses two batteries. I liked the Streamlight for the same reasons, useful output without being too much, and a common battery type. But it’s too long, and it doesn’t have selectable brightness modes. This makes the E12 a clear winner if you’re looking for a flashlight that is just flat-out USEFUL. It’s small size is handy “EDC” purposes and it saves the batteries in my more serious use lights from mundane purposes that don’t involve blinding Antifa Zombies.

At HIGH, 160 Lumens is more than enough for going into the basement to find that can of paint you knew you put away. Medium’s 30 Lumens is actually perfect for most things. And if your wife is asleep and you don’t want to wake her up, the Low setting’s 5 Lumens will get you to the bathroom and back without stubbing the everliving crap out of your little toe, again.

The body of the little E12 is solid aluminum, with some ridges going around it to help prevent it from getting slippery. This is important because it is small in the hands and could be difficult to keep hold of without it. Small, lightweight, but doesn’t feel “Cheap” at all. Sturdy. Like Gimili from LOTR. And if you don’t know who that is, you are sad, and Google is your friend.

The Tailcap Switch is great… A quick tap to change between the three modes, and a firm Click to turn it on and off while staying in the last mode you used. This is about perfect, and is a feature missing from the other light I mentioned that this has replaced. In fact, I gave the other light away. I don’t need it anymore. I have the E12 now.

The Clip allows for “Tip Up” or “Tip Down” carry and it does carry very well… and I find it goes nicely in my pocket alongside a folding knife without competing for space. I also find that I’m carrying this light more than the others and after using it for a couple of weeks, I can find no fault with it.
If you are interested in this light, or the many others Fenix makes, take a minute to browse their Site. They have no less than a Dozen lights for EDC use, and they have lights all the way up to serious Search and Rescue use and everything in between. A truly impressive array of options. But get the E12… It’s too damn good not to have one of these. Just Get it:
FENIX E12 V2.0

Review: Fenix E35 V3.0

As soon as this little light arrived, I knew I was going to like it. The compact size is the perfect form factor for this type of light. It’s not taking its self as seriously as a “Tactical Light” does… I’m not even sure what a “tactical light” really is supposed to be. Because the most Tactical Flashlight was used during the Vietnam War.

But these new fangled LED lights, I have to admit, have some advantages. Size, Weight, Power, and you can recharge them… Okay, so our light throwing technology has come a long way. And I’m grateful. I’m still packing a 1911 though… Two World Wars, bitches!

Okay, so one of the reasons I really dig this E35 V3.0 is the fact that it’s got a simple button that is intuitive to use. Intuitive is a fancy 2 Dollar word that means you don’t have to read the manual. The clip is a good size for securing the light to webbing, pockets or even a belt. The is about as perfect as you can get. This thing even feels good in your hand. It’s easy to hold and it’s not going to slip out of your grip. This is great. Some tactical lights I know of have gripping surfaces like cheese graters as if you are going to be using a flashlight while your hands are coated in slick blood. Amateurs, that’s what your NVG’s are for… Kids.

If there is anything I’d change on this light, for a V4.0 version… I’d add small protective ears on either side of the activation button. Partially to protect the button from accidental activation, but also to help index the light in the hand so it’s easier to use in the dark before you get the light turned on. You can’t really index off the clip as the clip rotates. And really that’s my only nit-pick. This flashlight here is damn near perfect. And I don’t say that lightly. It even LOOKS cool. And I don’t really ever take looks into consideration for something like this. But it’s fact. The brass colored button and bezel just make the Light seem that much cooler.

Now this is where… Sorry in advance… The light really shines. 3,000 Lumen output on Turbo with 1 hour and 15 minutes run time. (When I tested mine, I found that it actually ran longer) In High, 1200 Lumens for 2 hours and 40 minutes. That’s staggering for a light of this size! 450 Lumens on Medium lasts 7 hours. And to test that I brought it with me to work, fully charged and set it on my desk. It probably could have run longer, but when I clocked out for the day, it was still going strong over seven hours later. I turned it off before it ran out of juice, so I don’t know how much longer it could have gone, but my impression is that Fenix’s time statements are a bit conservative. Low and Eco modes were not tested for run time, because life is too short and I’m going to take their word for it.
Now, at 50 Lumens, the claimed 50 hours of run time is impressive. 50 hours is a very long time and highly useable if you are in a dark area… because 50 lumens is a good deal of usable light for camp chores after dark, walking a rocky trail, or in a survival situation like being stuck in an underground bunker playing poker with Russian Stalkers. Whatever the situation, 50 lumens for 50 hours is probably going to get you through. Going up to 1200 and you’re blinding people. 3000 and your blinding the Search and Rescue aircraft.

In the above photos, you can see the stepped progression of light output. In the Eco and Low modes, my camera’s automatic night mode kicked in and helped illuminate the view… You can tell by the orangish light from a street light on the left. So those are not a great indicator of what the light is actually doing. In Medium mode, the 3rd image is pretty true. The light thrown was enough to see quite well at the distance. In High, it was impressive. 1200 Lumens is a lot of light here and was more than enough to see everything. In Turbo Mode, 3,000 lumens was incredible and it made the Guy across the street come out and ask just what the hell I was using. I kid you not, he ordered his own Fenix light off Amazon right then and there on his phone.

It comes with a USB Type C cord for recharging the battery. A spare O-Ring for the battery compartment seal. And a little strap that I’m never going to use.
So to sum it up, this light is now – hands down – my favorite hand-held light that I have, have ever had, or probably will ever have in the foreseeable future. I like it better than the PD36 TAC light – which is an awesome flashlight. The E35 V3.0 puts out the same light, but it’s just a bit more compact and “Friendlier” to use. If that’s even a thing. I don’t know if that’s a fair metric to compare lights by. But I just did. That’s my personal opinion. You can form your own opinion by getting one of these for yourself. Click this link here:
Fenix E35 V3.0

Fenix PD36 TAC

The ubiquitous Tactical Flashlight… Something that every Self Defense Expert says you should always EDC. You should always have a Flashlight on you, always. Everyday, all the time, like your wallet, knife, and Roland Special modified Glock, and a Trauma Kit. Because you’re permanently out of bubblegum.

I’ll be honest, I do not always carry a flashlight on my person. But do always have one handy, nearby, and ready to go.

The “Ready to Go” part is often a pain in the lamp. Surefire lights have been the go-to standard for tactical operators at every shooting range. But I’ve found they have two issues. One, they are really just not that bright. Like a lot of tactical operators at every shooting range. And they are very thirsty. They guzzle the juice from a set of batteries like a Frat Boy at a Party Keg. And CR123’s are not the most price point friendly. That being said… Standard. Surefire does some things very right. The light output is good. But better yet, they are solid. Rock Freaking Solid. I’ve literally never had one fail. The Switches always work. The water-proofing is flawless. And I’ve taken them on many adventures and miss-adventures and grand adventures. The failure point though has always been me, because they’ll start to drain and I could have freaking sworn I brought the spare batteries with me in the pack’s zippered compartment, right where I… Ah, I used them already.

The PD36 is sized well… Appropriately for the purpose. And it’s equipped with a fully functional pocket clip. Though, I’ve never used any clips on any lights for clipping to a Pocket. That’s where my knife goes. But they do clip on other things in other places just fine, thank you. Such as Molle loops. When did Molle become more popular than Alice? I liked Alice. Anyways… So let’s talk about the most important thing for a Light. The Light.

This thing is insanely bright. THREE THOUSAND Lumens. Good Hell. You could hunt for German Bombers over London with these things. You could signal for edgy loner anti-social super-heroes with this. It’s bright. Do not look directly into the LED. It’s like looking into a nuclear reaction. Trust me.

At 3,000 Lumen output, the lamp will get hot. That’s expected. Hot enough that there’s actually a warning etched onto the light. Disregard that warning at your own risk. Now, pouring out 3KL is going to drain that battery pretty quickly. It’s only going to last an hour and a half. They call that TURBO mode. That’s the highest of the Modes. Welcome to the 80’s.
Now here’s where it’s interesting. The Tail Cap has two switch positions. Tactical and Duty. I don’t know who’s naming this shit, but they need to step away from the X-Box. “Tactical” gives you a simple on and off into HIGH mode that puts out a reasonable, useful, and honestly the best balance of output and firepower… 2,000 Lumens. But if you press it right you’ll find that dumbass strobe mode… Because Lightswitch Raves are something REAL OPERATORS do. Just ask MARSOC. Anyways, that’s at 2KL as well.
The Duty Mode gives you the same Strobe mode, but then you can get to some good stuff… Eco Mode, which is 30 Lumens for 160 hours. Low Mode for 150 Lumens for 18 hours and 45 Minutes. Medium for 350 Lumens for 10 hours and 10 minutes, and then Duty-High, not the same as Tactical-High… 1000 Lumens for 3 hours and 15 minutes.
All of that is just overkill and tapping the endcap button to select the mode you want is just 2001 Space Bullshit. This is 2021 and Simplicity is Gold. You already have to twist the end cap to select Tactical or Duty. Why not just twist to HIGH MEDIUM LOW with the tailcap button for On and Off?
Look, Fenix, I like what you’re doing… But this PD36 is just complicated. The Output is awesome. The Longevity is awesome. The form factor, size, weight, is just awesome. This is a GREAT LIGHT. But the intended use is for the same people who consider that a Thumb Safety is Too Fecking Complicated and that a DA/SA Trigger is something that trips them up. A Flashlight – especially one where the user is in a high-stress situation – isn’t something that should be thought about when there are other highly kinetic things to worry about.
Oh, but that’s why there’s the Tactical Mode…
Dude, STFU. Fix that Tail Cap Switch, trim down the modes. Or make it like a Dimmer Switch where you twist for the brightness from Eco to Turbo and then activates with a pressure switch that only gives you temp on and hard on.
This is why Surefire pretty much owns the tactical market. They know their customers. Fenix, you need to do some research. You’re building some good stuff. This one, it’s good… But it could be better.
Overall, yes, it’s a Buy. It’s a solid Buy. It’s absolutely worth buying.
For more details on this and other Fenix Lights, hit them up directly:


Flashlight Fetish?

I’ll be honest… I love Flashlights.  Guns, Knives, Flashlights… Love them.  Our good friend Steve is making some flashlights and the stats look awesome.

Cree XR-L T6 LED up to 460 lumens
5 Output Levels
Two CR123 batteries or two 16340 Li-ion batteries or one 18650Li-ion battery
Input Voltage: 3.0V-9V
Burn Time Using 18650 Battery – High light: 3.5hours ; Low light: 80hours
Throw Beam: 280 meters
Tactical end click switch with momentary-on function
Waterproof and Impact Resistant
12.8cm(length) 2.6cm(diameter)
Weapon Mountable, with an optional pressure switch.

Less than 80 bucks.   Who would be interested in one?   ME!!!   Who else?

I’ll post more info about this when I get it.  But rumor has it, Steve is going to do a WeTheArmed.com Special Offer for less than 60 bucks.  SOLID!

Gear Alert: Primos Light

I’m a gear whore when it comes to some things… especially Lights.   I love a good flashlight.  Primos has an interesting new Weapon Light out now.  It’s designed for Night/Low Light Predator Hunting. Check it out.

It seems fairly large for a weapon light, but it has some good qualities that make it worth a look.  Rechargable is a nice feature, as is the 220 Lumen LED head, and a 5 hour run time.  A High Low switch would be able to extend that life cycle by double I’m sure.

On the side is a small dial switch that turns a red filter to give you a 220 Lumen white light, or red light as the situation warrants it.  Well, maybe not red… more light a soft pink.  The white light is nice and bright, but I’m not sure our example is 220 lumins.  Maybe half of that… but it’s still nice and bright.

It has a very narrow profile and could potentially do very well on the side of a Quad Rail, or on the top with a rifle with a fold down flush front sight post.  However, this light from Primos has a couple problems I’m not real pleased about…

The mount is crazy tall.  It’s designed to clip to your 1″ Hunting Scope Body, and be able to rise above the scope’s objective bell and such.  Which is find for what it is… but a low picatiny mount would give this some nice tactical applications, not just hunting.

The light does come with a pig-tail switch.  But if you have charged batteries in the light, the light is on.  When you attach the pig-tail switch, you can then turn it off.  Oh, it also turns off if you plug it in to recharge… but then you can’t have the pig-tail switch plugged in when you do.  This retarded power on/off thing is a deal-breaker for me on the light for my purposes… but might be just fine for yours, so it’s worth looking at.  I think to make this light more ulititarian would have been to include a simple freaking ON OFF BUTTON.  Also, it’s not water proof.  WTF was Primos thinking here?  Fix these issues and give it a low profile pic mount and you could have a heck of a good Weapon Light for the Tactical Shooter, not just the Critter Shooter.