How to choose a lantern

Compact and powerful flashlight – a device that is a reliable assistant not only in highly specialized situations, but also in everyday life. Modern models are radically different from their predecessors – being quite compact and miniature, they are able to generate a powerful and bright beam of light, allowing you to see the smallest details even in pitch darkness, and due to the large number of diverse models, everyone gets the opportunity to choose the most suitable and functional flashlight for to specific operating conditions.

choose a lantern

The best flashlight manufacturers

Choosing a high-quality lantern for operation in certain conditions, preference should be given to the products of world-famous manufacturers of lighting equipment, only in this case you will have at your disposal a functional and reliable device that will serve faithfully for more than one season. Traditionally, the best manufacturers are:

  1. Fenix;

  2. NecArmy;

  3. Sunwayman;

  4. Eagletac;

  5. Polarion;

  6. Niwalker;

  7. MagLite;

The range of the above manufacturers includes a huge number of models, each of which is designed to solve a specific range of tasks. Before choosing one or another model, you should familiarize yourself with its characteristics, as well as study the reviews of users who have tried the device in real life.

Types of lanterns. Which to choose?

The huge variety of lamps on sale can be divided into several conditional groups depending on their functional features, as well as on a number of tasks they are intended to perform.

Flashlight

Flashlight

Compact device designed for everyday use. It has an ergonomic case, which houses a power source, and a halogen lamp or LED is used as a light source.

Advantages

  • Compact dimensions;

  • Low cost;

  • Beam width adjustment;

  • The power source can be either batteries or rechargeable batteries;

  • Provides a bright and powerful beam of light;

  • Minimum weight;

disadvantages

  • During operation, you have to hold it in your hands;

  • High quality professional and tactical road models;

  • High battery consumption;

Camping lantern

Camping Flashlight

Most of these models have a body in the form of a cylinder, and LEDs mounted in a reflector in a circle act as a light source. This design allows you to illuminate the space 360 ​​degrees relative to the lamp and provides a soft, pleasant to the eye, luminous flux. The best models are equipped with a built-in battery with a decent margin of brightness, as well as adjusting the light intensity, allowing you to customize it for specific operating conditions.

Advantages

  • Compact dimensions;

  • They give a soft, not straining eyes, light;

  • Use in any conditions;

  • Low cost;

disadvantages

  • Relatively weak light intensity, illuminate only a couple of meters around them;

  • The inability to generate a directed beam of light;

  • High battery consumption;

Head Torch

Head Torch

Popular models, distinguished by their compact body size and very economical battery consumption. The light source of such lamps is almost always a powerful LED, which is paired with a reflector and a lens, thanks to which the width and degree of focus of the light flux can be adjusted. The best models have tilt angle adjustment and several brightness modes. With the help of a soft elastic band, they are fixed on the head, so that both hands remain free. They are very popular among hunters and fishermen, as well as among car mechanics.

Advantages

  • Compact dimensions;

  • Allows you to adjust the width of the light beam and focus;

  • They are fixed on the head and leave the hands free;

  • Power source – 'finger' batteries or rechargeable batteries;

  • High luminous flux power;

disadvantages

  • Cannot be securely fixed to a hard surface;

  • Requires regular battery replacement;

  • Cannot be used as a camping lantern;

Flashlights for diving and spearfishing

diving lights

Devices designed for underwater use. They are characterized by a powerful and capacious battery that provides many hours of continuous illumination, as well as a bright and intense luminous flux. The design of such flashlights can be in the form of a traditional hand-held model, or it can have the form factor of a forehead. A prerequisite is a durable waterproof case that allows long-term operation at a depth of 30 meters or more.

Advantages

  • Compact dimensions;

  • Capacious battery;

  • Powerful LED at the heart of the light source;

  • Waterproof case;

disadvantages

  • High price;

Bicycle flashlight

Bicycle flashlight

A device whose main task is to function as a headlight for a bicycle. This is indicated by its key elements – a compact body, protected from moisture, dirt and mechanical stress, the presence of a mount on the bicycle handlebars, and a bright, powerful directional luminous flux with several modes of lighting intensity. The power source can be batteries or accumulators, or a special bicycle generator powered by a rotating bicycle wheel.

Advantages

  • Small size;

  • Many different power supplies including a compact wheel-mounted generator;

  • Bright and directional light;

  • The functionality is aimed at cycling;

disadvantages

  • High price;

  • A very narrow specialization, devices of this class are not needed by everyone;

The main criteria of the flashlight

Criterias of choice

There are a lot of criteria that must be considered when buying a flashlight, and they all have a direct impact on the functionality and applicability of the device in certain conditions.

Light source type

Modern models of flashlights are equipped with either a traditional halogen lamp or newfangled LEDs. The first gives a 'warm' yellow light, while the second has a cold white tint. Besides. Energy efficiency indicators also differ – with brighter and more contrasting light, the LED is significantly more economical and works on a single charge or a pair of batteries for much longer.

The most advanced models of flashlights can be equipped with both a halogen lamp and LEDs, which makes it possible to choose between a light source at the touch of a button.

The so-called laser flashlights are distinguished into a separate category, the source of the light flux is a powerful laser beam. Distinguished by high brightness, it has a very narrow beam width, and therefore is of little use for traditional purposes and is used only by hunters as a target designator.

Brightness and luminous flux length

The brightness of the luminous flux is measured in lumens and the higher this indicator, the brighter and more powerful the luminous flux. Most of the presented lamps have a brightness of 60-80 lumens and up to 1000-1500 lumens, the light from which is quite comparable to the main beam of a car's headlights.

The second important parameter is the length of the light beam. It is measured from the reflector of the flashlight and up to the moment when the light beam is scattered to the brightness of the full moon at night. This parameter is directly related to brightness – the brighter and more powerful the lighting element, the greater the length of the light flux of the lantern.

The duration of the battery life of the flashlight

A parameter that reflects the resource of the flashlight from one set of batteries or from one of its charges. Reflects the time it takes to discharge from 100 to 10% of the remaining battery life. Rounding is done up to 15 minutes and, accordingly, the higher this parameter – the longer your flashlight will 'live' at night.

Water resistance

Most of the flashlights are made in a moisture resistant design, which allows the flashlight to be immersed to a certain depth. This criterion is measured in the form of IPX classes:

  1. IPX4-6 means the flashlight is splash, rain and rain resistant;

  2. IPX7 means that the flashlight can be submerged to a depth of a meter and for up to 30 minutes;

  3. IPX8 – the most protected models, meaning the ability to dive to a depth of 2 meters for up to 1.5-2 hours.

Power supply

The most used varieties in this situation are two:

  1. Traditional alkaline or alkaline batteries. The advantage is high versatility – new batteries can be bought at almost any kiosk. The minus is significant: in the case when batteries run out far from civilization, a person is left without a source of light;

  2. Batteries are a more advanced option. As a rule, they are produced in the form of ordinary batteries, and therefore can be used in all flashlights without exception. Having a large capacity, the batteries provide longer operating time, while recharging is carried out both from the 220V network and from a conventional car cigarette lighter. And while the batteries are charging, you can install ordinary batteries instead of them and not be left without a light source in the dark;

Availability of different lighting modes

Even the most budget models have different glow intensity modes. A reasonable minimum is 2-3 different brightness modes plus a strobe mode used when it is necessary to give a signal SOS. Modes are switched using a special button or other control element.

Tips for choosing a flashlight for different conditions

tips for choosing a flashlight

Choosing an LED flashlight

LED lights have gained immense popularity due to their high efficiency and the ability to generate a powerful luminous flux. A good LED torch should have the following features:

  1. High-quality waterproof case of IPX7-8 standard;

  2. Powerful lenticular lens that allows you to change the focal length of the light flux;

  3. High quality LED providing a brightness of 500-700 Lumens;

  4. Power source – battery;

Choosing a headlamp

Headlamps are widely spread among hunters, fishermen and outdoor enthusiasts. The best are the models that:

  1. Have a high-quality waterproof case;

  2. Equipped with a powerful LED capable of generating a luminous flux of 500-800 lumens;

  3. They have lenticular optics allowing to change the focal length of the light beam;

  4. They have several modes of operation;

  5. A rechargeable battery or compact finger-type batteries is used as a source;

Choosing a rechargeable flashlight

To me, depending on the form factor, preference should be given to rechargeable flashlights, the power source of which are compact 'finger' batteries-accumulators. Such devices allow using conventional batteries instead of rechargeable batteries, if necessary, as well as recharging using third-party chargers. If we are talking about a battery built into the flashlight, it must have a capacity of at least 2000 mAh, and a service life of at least 300-500 charge and discharge cycles without losing capacity.

Choosing a lantern for hunting and fishing

The lion's share of hunters and fishermen prefer to use a quality headlamp capable of generating a luminous flux of up to 1000 lumens and a beam length of up to 1 kilometer. A mandatory requirement is water resistance according to the IPX8 standard and the ability to use both batteries and rechargeable batteries as a battery.

Choosing an underwater lamp

The underwater torch is a compact and miniature handheld device that generates high intensity sweat and is sealed and waterproof. The built-in battery is also important: in order not to be left in the middle of a reservoir with a faulty flashlight, its capacity should be as high as possible. It will also be useful to be able to fix the flashlight on the barrel of a spearfishing gun, thereby freeing the hands of the hunter.

Choosing an underbarrel flashlight

An underbarrel flashlight is a tactical equipment that not everyone needs. It is popular, first of all, among hunters, as well as among fans of paintball and airsoft. As a rule, for such purposes, compact LED lights are used, which are powered by a battery or accumulator and have the ability to change the focus of the light beam. A grenade mount for weapons is almost always included with such flashlights. A special case of the underbarrel flashlight are laser models that allow using the flashlight as a target designator, thereby significantly increasing the accuracy of the shot.

In the following articles, our experts will tell you how to choose a compass and the secrets of choosing binoculars.


Attention! This material is the subjective opinion of the authors of the project and is not a purchase guide.

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