Author Topic: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?  (Read 1425 times)

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Online james_s

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #25 on: November 18, 2019, 04:37:37 am »
After using one for quite a while, I actually think every tech should own one AAA Keychain torch.  AAA - smallest easy batt; Keychain - you have it when you need it (very very important) ; multi brightness - sometime to see closeup component you need adjustable brightness; not Maglite - field tool must be not too painful if you lost it. 
one other feature I wish to have is "magnetic grip".  As my Lumitop is doing well, I have no strong urge to get a newer one yet. 

disclosure--no relationship at all with Lumitop, just a happy customer.


I carried one for years, but at some point I reduced the amount of stuff in my pocket and got rid of it. There's a flashlight feature built into my mobile phone so that covers the always have it with me thing. Then I've got larger flashlights in my cars, in the pack I carry to and from the office, and around the house.
 

Offline cs.dk

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #26 on: November 18, 2019, 04:59:36 am »
Not AA/AAA though, bought 3 of BLF A6 SE with 1600 Lumen, use 18650 and I use with genuine Panasonic cells.

Its is community designed at Budget Light Forum, and sold exclusively by Banggood, priced for US$ 18 and quality build quite good.

Also its powered by u-controller for the smart thingy, quite useful like showing battery level thru blink, and also it memorizes the last brightness level  :-+, as I really hate to cycle thru brightness levels every time I turned on at the dumb ones.

Just google for "BLF A6" for more info.

I've bought 5-6 pcs. for me and a couple of friends back when they released it. Still got it in my pocket. Best torch i've ever had.
The only annoying thing is, the old batch had a great belt-clip, on the newer versions they got it to cheap.
 

Offline BravoV

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #27 on: November 18, 2019, 05:56:23 am »
I've bought 5-6 pcs. for me and a couple of friends back when they released it. Still got it in my pocket. Best torch i've ever had.
The only annoying thing is, the old batch had a great belt-clip, on the newer versions they got it to cheap.

Not sure about the latest coating/finishing, all of mine have really hard surface, as they won't scratch or dent easily, knew this as I put one inside my car's toolbox, and after all this years, laying side by side with other hard steel tools like wrench keys, screw drivers and etc, the flashlight's surface is still very smooth, quite amazing imo.  :-+

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #28 on: November 18, 2019, 07:25:29 am »
There's a flashlight feature built into my mobile phone so that covers the always have it with me thing.

Wash your mouth out!
 

Online VK5RC

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #29 on: November 18, 2019, 09:41:34 am »
A bit off topic - but not too far - I carry Victorinox midnight manager@work.
It is small form factor, has knife, scissors, usb drive, small torch, pen, flat and Phillips screwdrivers, bottle opener.
Pretty pricey but I use it so often.
Whoah! Watch where that landed we might need it later.
 

Offline Johnboy

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #30 on: November 18, 2019, 03:26:03 pm »
A bit off topic - but not too far - I carry Victorinox midnight manager@work.

It isn't until I see something like this that I realize I've posted off topic. I also didn't notice that the OP had already made his decision and basically thanked everyone and signed off before I even got to the party.

All that said, I agree that I dislike carrying a lot of things, and if I can find a way to incorporate a flashlight into something else, so much the better. I happen to have a flashlight on my phone as well, but there are a lot of times when I don't want to carry a cell phone with me, and I'd rather "shoot from the hip" (literally) and simply press a button when I'm lacking in light than unlock and fumble through menus anyway. A few years ago all of my dash lights suddenly went out while driving at night through a large metropolitan region and I had to use my watch to periodically view the analog speedometer. Having a reliable flashlight handy at all times can be a very good thing.
 

Online james_s

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #31 on: November 18, 2019, 04:48:17 pm »
Well the pub doesn't have to shut down and everyone go home when the first guy who got there leaves. It's often after the original question has been answered that the best discussions occur.
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #32 on: November 19, 2019, 08:44:04 am »
A bit off topic - but not too far - I carry Victorinox midnight manager@work.
It is small form factor, has knife, scissors, usb drive, small torch, pen, flat and Phillips screwdrivers, bottle opener.
Pretty pricey but I use it so often.

Horses for courses IMO.
Real AAA torch on the Keyring, and a Victorinox MiniChamp in the pocket. The knife gets used a lot more than the torch, so I'd rather have a more capable knife than try and combine it with a whimpy torch.
Then when I need a torch I want something fairly decent that the Midnite can't match with it's piddly LED.
 

Offline cs.dk

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #33 on: November 19, 2019, 09:17:03 am »

Not sure about the latest coating/finishing, all of mine have really hard surface, as they won't scratch or dent easily, knew this as I put one inside my car's toolbox, and after all this years, laying side by side with other hard steel tools like wrench keys, screw drivers and etc, the flashlight's surface is still very smooth, quite amazing imo.  :-+

The surface is fine.. It's the beltclip that is to weak - The one I have in my pocket are from the very first batch. Strong and springy beltclip. The newer ones seems like a beercan. Not springy at all and easy to bend.
 

Offline Peabody

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #34 on: November 19, 2019, 06:28:25 pm »
For single AA or AAA lights, has anyone tried the Energizer Ultimate Lithium cells?  They are lithium iron disulfide, nominal 1.5V, non-rechargeable.  It looks like they cost about twice what alkalines cost, but are supposed to have low internal resistance, which doesn't increase as the cells discharge.  Also good in the very cold.
 

Offline EEVblog

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #35 on: November 24, 2019, 09:58:06 am »
For single AA or AAA lights, has anyone tried the Energizer Ultimate Lithium cells?  They are lithium iron disulfide, nominal 1.5V, non-rechargeable.

They actually go up to almost 1.7V fresh IIRC.
Some products can't handle the extra voltage when fresh.
 

Offline HighVoltage

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #36 on: November 24, 2019, 02:54:51 pm »
German made "LED Lenser" are my absolute favorite small flashlight for many years already.

https://www.ledlenser.com/en/

There are 3 kinds of people in this world, those who can count and those who can not.
 

Offline Jeroen3

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #37 on: November 24, 2019, 03:22:35 pm »
I just buy many of those single AA flashlights on aliexpress for $2.
A few years ago I made a topic to find some ideal light, I'm still searching.

https://www.eevblog.com/forum/chat/the-quest-to-the-ideal-portable-work-light/msg1358019/#msg1358019

I did eventually work with these for a while. But eventually they do create a problem where the batteries are not long enough. (poor spring quality)

Meanwhile I bought some 18650's, maybe create my own or something. Not sure yet.
 

Offline Red Squirrel

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #38 on: November 24, 2019, 03:33:24 pm »
I found that an 18650 cell fits perfectly inside a 3/4" copper pipe.  I have yet to do it but I kind of want to make my own flash light with pipe.  It's very hard, if impossible to find a LED flashlight that takes 18650's and only has 1 mode. I just want on and off, that's it!  None of this annoying flashing stuff that I have to keep cycling through. 
 

Offline schmitt trigger

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #39 on: November 24, 2019, 04:22:18 pm »
For single AA or AAA lights, has anyone tried the Energizer Ultimate Lithium cells?  They are lithium iron disulfide, nominal 1.5V, non-rechargeable.  It looks like they cost about twice what alkalines cost, but are supposed to have low internal resistance, which doesn't increase as the cells discharge.  Also good in the very cold.

A few years ago, my son went to Egypt for a month, and took with him a real digital camera (not SLR, but prosumer), which ran on AA cells.

I advised him to purchase those batteries.

When he came back, he said that it had been an excellent recommendation, he was very happy.
 

Offline aargee

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #40 on: November 28, 2019, 05:46:24 am »
I second the BLF A6s - uses one 18650 and puts out heaps of light down to moonlight.
I also have the BLF Q8 - which I nickname "possum killer" - 5000+ lumens.
Not easy, not hard, just need to be incentivised.
 

Online SilverSolder

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #41 on: November 28, 2019, 08:43:27 pm »

These are about $5, run a long time on a battery, are reliable.




They will have to be discontinued, for sure!
 

Offline Red Squirrel

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #42 on: November 29, 2019, 03:11:46 am »
Actually it could be fun to mod one of those.  Make a lithium ion battery pack and change the bulb to the brightest LED you can find that will fit the bulb's foot print and you got yourself a pretty skookum flashlight.  Not exactly tactical or strong but it's a handy form factor for general use and would last a very long time.  Could even throw in a USB port to act as a battery bank. heck, Even a solar cell to trickle charge it (might take a few years but it will charge eventually).  I'm starting a kick starter! :P
 
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Offline Mr.B

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Re: Anyone recommend a reliable cheap flashlight?
« Reply #43 on: November 29, 2019, 03:28:35 am »
I have had a LED Lenser K3 on my keyring for more than 10 years.
It is a bit beaten up, but works every time I need it.
Time is the overseer of all things.
 


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