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Torches 

Torches: specifications, types

Type

General type of flashlight.

Hand lamps for general use are divided into full-size and compact. However, in addition to this, on the market you can find many models with a narrower specialization and/or specific design and mounting features: headlamps ; touring devices, including self-contained dynamo lights, L-shaped lights, and diving models; powerful hand lamps and ultra-compact key chains ; auxiliary lighting systems ; as well as underbarrel models and baton flashlights widely used in law enforcement agencies. It should be noted that one model can belong to several types at once. For example, most underbarrel flashlights are equipped with a removable mount for mounting on a weapon, and without such a mount they turn into hand-held or hand-held compact ones; and L-shaped models, in principle, are not an independent type of flashlights — most often this is a design feature of hand-held compact or head-mounted devices (or even models that combine both of these applications).

— Manual. Full-size hand-held flashlights over 20 cm long and weighing over 200 g represent a kind of..."middle class". They are designed for those for whom compactness does not play a decisive role and functionality is important first of all. Such lights can carry on board more than 1 LED and powerful power supplies, providing a good luminous flux; they are often supplied with various additional functions.

— Manual compact. This type of flashlight is somewhat larger than key fobs, but can still be classified as compact devices: hand-held compacts look like a tube up to 20 cm long and weighing up to 200 g. They rarely install more than one LED, but their dimensions and weight already allow the use of fairly powerful sources supply, which has a positive effect on the characteristics of the luminous flux (see "Maximum luminous flux"). In addition, a number of additional functions can be used in this type of flashlight, such as focus and brightness adjustment (see below).

— Lantern on the forehead. Flashlights designed to be mounted on the head — usually with special elastic straps that can be adjusted to fit. Mounting features impose restrictions on the weight and dimensions of the lantern, which affects the functionality. When purchasing such a flashlight, it is worth considering that high brightness in this case may be a disadvantage — if you need light to work with objects in close proximity, excessive brightness quickly tires your eyes. In this case, it may make sense to pay attention to models with brightness control (see below for more details). Typically, such models have the ability to adjust the angle of the beam, but the possibility (and features) of such adjustment needs to be specified separately.

— L-shaped. Lanterns in which the beam of light is directed perpendicular to the body; the body itself, usually, has a cylindrical or close to it shape. Most of these models, according to the main format, belong to hand-held compact ones, and many also allow use in the headlamp format (see above for both). Anyway, L-shaped lanterns with the possibility of manual use have a characteristic clip on the body — on the opposite side of the lamp. Such a clip allows you to hang the device on a belt, the edge of a pocket, an element of an unloading vest or other overalls, etc.; in this case, the light beam will be directed forward, the vertical position of the case will ensure the stability of the device, and the user's hands will be free. (Note that the first L-shaped lanterns designed for such wearing appeared as an element of army equipment — back in World War II, the US military fully appreciated the merits of such a design).
As for the forehead installation, in such cases the body is placed horizontally, and its mount is made movable. Turning the lantern in such a mount, you can set almost any angle of the beam; at the same time, regardless of this angle, the position of the lantern remains equally stable (whereas in some headrests with “heads” of an inclined design, such a “head” may tend to roll forward as the mount wears out).

— Manual lamp. The most powerful type of hand lamps, which can even be called "hand spotlights". Most of these devices are designed to give out a long-range and at the same time sufficiently thick beam of light — much wider than in many other types of lanterns. Actually, the illumination range of hand-held lamps often exceeds 100 or even 200 m, while the large beam width makes it possible to very effectively detect individual objects even at such large distances. Another, less common type of such devices are models that have a short range, but are capable of illuminating a vast area.
Anyway, flashlights of this type turn out to be quite large and heavy, so initially they are not designed to be constantly carried with you (although even one and a half to two hours with such a device in your hands usually do not cause much discomfort). It is worth paying attention to hand lamps in cases where the effective detection range (or bright illumination of a vast area) is of the most fundamental importance to you. In particular, such devices are very popular in rescue services: a powerful beam of a "portable searchlight" is indispensable for search operations at night. Also among the lamps of this type there are so-called "inspection" models, well suited for inspecting machines, industrial equipment, communications (cables, pipelines), etc.

— Tourist. Tourist lamps are mainly lanterns that were originally intended for organizing lighting in a camp, at a halt, etc. Such devices provide diffused light with a coverage of 360 ° horizontally and most often allow installation directly on the ground. In addition, most of them have a hook for hanging, sometimes supplemented with a built-in magnet (see below for both). Thus, such a lantern can be mounted on a tree branch, under the ceiling of a tent / awning, etc., significantly expanding the area of illumination — or hung on a backpack or other equipment, illuminating the path for several people at once.
Most tourist lanterns have only this specialization; however, there are also models that allow other applications. Usually these are hand-held compact devices of a special design — with a retractable diffuser made of white matte material. Such a device allows you to turn the directional beam into diffused light with full horizontal coverage; and when such a beam is not needed, the diffuser can be hidden in the housing. However, some of the more traditional travel models also have a folding design — it makes it easier to carry after hours, especially if the device needs to be hidden in a backpack or bag with other things.

— Dynamo flashlight. Lanterns equipped with a built-in generator (dynamo) that generates energy due to the user's muscular strength — usually for this you have to swing or twist a special lever. Thus, it is possible to recharge the built-in battery even in the absence of power sources (and such lights most often work from batteries). Such features are especially relevant for those who often have to be "far from civilization": tourists, military, researchers, etc. At the same time, dynamo lights can have different specializations — compact, tourist, etc.

— For diving. Lanterns originally designed for diving and long stays at great depths — usually from 50 m or more. Such models, by definition, have a sealed waterproof housing (see "Dust and moisture protection"). In addition, diving lights are often designed with specific features designed to provide additional convenience and safety. For example, the body can have bright colours or additional inserts that increase visibility under water, as well as be made of lightweight material so that the flashlight released from the hand floats to the surface and does not sink. Often, the device is supplemented with a carabiner for attaching to equipment or a hand strap (see "Complete set"). It is because of these additional features that not every flashlight with a high level of water protection is considered diving. Therefore, it is worth looking for a lamp specifically for diving among the models of this category.

— Auxiliary lighting. Lanterns designed to organize additional stationary lighting where there is no light or it is not enough. In a sense, such models are similar to tourist camping ones (see above), they can also be used in a parking lot or in a tent. However, the matter is not limited to this: many auxiliary lamps are originally designed for use in workshops, garages, etc. Some of them can also be hung on the open hood of a car, which can be very important for field repairs. But such models are not designed for carrying in hands: it is technically possible, but not very convenient.

— Trinket. This category includes the most compact models: their weight, usually, does not exceed 50 g, and the length is 10 cm. Hence the name — most of these lanterns can be worn instead of a keychain on a keychain. Actually, the convenience of wearing is the main advantage of key rings: you can always have such a flashlight at hand. The main disadvantage is low power: key fobs are usually equipped with one LED (see "Number of diodes"), and any "solid" power source in a compact case will not fit. At the same time, such lamps are quite enough for simple everyday tasks — for example, to illuminate the road on an unlit section of the street or find a keyhole if a light bulb has burned out in the entrance.

— Underbarrel. Flashlights designed to be mounted on a weapon are most often under the barrel, but installation on the side is also technically acceptable. Many of these models are essentially hand-held compact flashlights (see above), supplemented by a removable weapon mount (or the ability to install on such a mount — see "Packaging"), as well as, in most cases, a remote button (see below) ; however, there are also purely underbarrel models in which the mount is not removed. In both cases, the mount is usually designed for a standard Weaver / Picatinny rail, but this point needs to be specified separately. This also applies to the possibility of full-fledged use with firearms: the fact is that some underbarrel lights are intended for airsoft drives and are simply not designed for powerful recoil.

— Lantern-baton. Lanterns with a baton or baseball bat body and are strong enough to strike. Such a flashlight can be a very useful addition to the equipment of a watchman or law enforcement officer. Note that some so-called patrol lights, hand-held lights in a large and durable body of traditional design, also allow the use as a “percussion tool”. However, for them, such an application is an extreme case, while baton lamps are initially created as reliable and impact resistant as possible. Therefore, patrol models in our catalog are still not assigned to this category, but to ordinary hand lamps.

Lamp type

The type of lamp installed in the flashlight.

Nowadays, the most widespread models on LEDs(with or without a reflector). Halogen lamps are used much less frequently (alone or in combination with LEDs), xenon lamps, krypton lamps, fluorescent lamps, and in some models you can even find classic incandescent lamps. A separate type of light source is a laser. Here is a more detailed description of the most relevant options for today:

— LEDs. They can also be referred to as LED — an abbreviation of the English name. The most advanced type of lamps today, used in the vast majority of modern flashlights. One of the key advantages of LEDs is extremely high efficiency — as a result, they provide excellent brightness with low power consumption and small size, and they practically do not heat up during operation. LEDs can be made both in the form of separate point light sources and in the form of COB panels of a fairly large area; see Diode Model for details. Also, such light sources are resistant to shock, shock and low temperatures; with all this, they are generally inexpensive and have practically no noticeable shortcomings.

— LED with reflector. In lanterns with this type of lamp, LEDs (see above about them) are installed in special-shaped recesses covered with reflective material. Thanks to...this design, the light emitted by the LED to the sides is reflected and directed forward, in the same direction as the main stream. This significantly increases the overall brightness of the flashlight, which is especially important for compact models with a single LED of relatively low brightness. Actually, most compact types (see "Type") have just such a lamp design.

— Halogen lamp. One of the most popular modifications of a classic incandescent lamp: the light source is a hot metal spiral in a sealed glass flask filled with gas with the addition of bromine or iodine vapor (these substances are so-called halogens — hence the name of the lamps themselves). This has a positive effect on efficiency and allows you to achieve a fairly high brightness; so that modern lanterns with such lamps are usually referred to as hand-held lamps. At the same time, even in such devices, such lamps are becoming less and less common, being replaced by the LEDs described above.

— LEDs / halogen lamp. The combination in the design of the two light sources described above at once; usually the "halogen" is installed in the centre, and the LEDs are around it. At one time, this combination appeared as an attempt to create sufficiently powerful lighting devices that would consume less energy than analogues with halogen lamps, while costing less than pure LED ones. In addition, such a design provided additional features for adjusting the operating mode: it could be changed simply by turning on the existing light sources together or separately. However, with the development and cheapening of LED technologies, this option has practically lost its relevance; today it is extremely rare.

— Xenon lamp. This term can mean two types of light sources: one of the modifications of an incandescent lamp, where the bulb with a spiral is filled with an inert xenon gas, or a gas discharge lamp, in which the light source is an electric arc in the same xenon medium. The first variety was used mainly in small pocket flashlights, the second — in hand lamps. At one time, xenon lamps (both varieties) had very decent indicators of efficiency and brightness, although they were not cheap. However, again, the development of LEDs made the production of flashlights with such lamps impractical.

— Incandescent lamp. In this case, we mean classic incandescent lamps that do not belong to more advanced varieties — halogen, xenon, krypton, etc. Recall that the light source in such a lamp is a hot metal spiral in a glass bulb, which is filled either with vacuum (in miniature light bulbs), or a mixture of argon and nitrogen (in larger ones). Anyway, such lamps nowadays are considered completely obsolete — primarily due to low efficiency, which results in low brightness with significant power consumption, as well as strong heating during operation. However, nowadays this option can still be found in individual lamps — mainly hand-held lamps for the construction industry, powered by standard replaceable batteries for power tools. "Gluttony" in terms of energy consumption for such lamps is not critical, and the bulbs themselves are extremely cheap.

— Laser. The laser beam itself has a high effective range, but a small thickness. Therefore, flashlights with such light sources are usually equipped with adjustable optics, with which you can scatter the beam and turn its “imprint” from a point into a fairly large spot. Typically, laser flashlights have a specific purpose: illumination and target designation when hunting at night (for this, a mount on an optical sight is often provided), giving light signals, etc. Note that when using such devices, care must be taken: if it gets into the eyes, the laser beam can not only blind, but also cause irreversible damage, even at a fairly large distance.

The remaining types of lamps nowadays are practically ousted from the market by LEDs and are found mainly in frankly outdated models. It makes no sense to describe them in detail, we note only the key features:
  • Fluorescent lamp. One of the names for fluorescent lamps, known colloquially as "fluorescent lamps". The luminous flux itself turns out to be scattered, so such light sources were used mainly in tourist lanterns and individual models of hand-held lamps.
  • krypton lamp. An incandescent lamp with a bulb filled with krypton to increase brightness and reduce heat. Due to the high cost of the filler, such lamps were mostly made miniature and used in lanterns of the appropriate size.

Diode Model

The model of the LED(s) used in the flashlight. Knowing the exact name of the LED, you can find its detailed characteristics and evaluate the capabilities of the flashlight. In addition, this information can be useful when replacing a failed diode.

Note that the LED model is indicated mainly if it is a high-end LED with advanced characteristics. Such light sources are produced by different manufacturers, but Cree products are the most popular in modern flashlights. Here are some of the most common LEDs from this brand: Cree XP-L, Cree XM-L2, Cree XP-E, Cree XP-G, Cree XM-L T6, Cree XM-L2 T6, Cree XM-L U2, Cree XM- L2 U2, Cree XP-G R5, Cree XP-G2 R5, Cree XP-E Q5.

A separate case are diode plates made using COB technology (chip-on-board, that is, “chip on board”). Such plates are arrays of numerous miniature light sources soldered directly into the printed circuit board at a short distance from each other and filled with a special composition; this composition performs two functions at once. First of all, it protects the LEDs from contact with air, which increases their service life; in addition, the...coating effectively diffuses light, creating a uniform luminous flux.

Note that earlier, to create LED arrays, SMD technology was mainly used, with individual LEDs soldered onto the surface of the printed circuit board. However, COB is a more modern and more advanced option: this technology allows you to place small but bright light sources with very high density, achieving a powerful light output even with small array sizes. In addition, SMD boards did not provide a protective coating.

In general, it makes sense to pay attention to flashlights with COB plates if you need a high-quality diffused light source. As a result, these diode arrays are especially popular in camping and auxiliary lighting (see Type), but can be used in other applications, from ultra-compact key fobs to high-power hand-held lights.

Number of diodes

The number of LEDs (see "Lamp type") provided in the design of the lantern.

At first glance, the more LEDs, the more powerful this model. However, in fact, things are not so clear cut. Firstly, one high-end LED may well provide more light output than several inexpensive diodes. Secondly, modern luminaires can use both traditional LEDs and arrays of numerous miniature diodes on a common basis. Such arrays can be implemented using SMD technology or more advanced COB; the differences between these options are described in more detail in the Diode Model section, here we note that a solid SMD or COB plate is also considered to be 1 LED — despite the fact that in terms of luminosity it can exceed conventional LEDs by several times, or even orders of magnitude.

Thus, it is hardly worth directly evaluating the brightness and efficiency of the flashlight by this parameter. But what the number of diodes often directly affects is reliability: most “repeatedly charged” lamps are able to continue working even if some of the diodes fail. In addition, in some types of flashlights — in particular, tourist models and hand-held diffused lamps (see "Type") — each LED illuminates a separate sector, and together they cover a full 360 ° horizontally.

Maximum light flow

The maximum luminous flux provided by the lantern.

Luminous flux (denoted in lumens) can be described as the total amount of light produced by an LED or other light source and distributed in all directions where this source shines by itself (without lenses, reflectors, etc.). In fact, this means that the capabilities of the flashlight depend not only on the luminous flux, but also on the angle of illumination (see "Angle of illumination (light)"). For example, a relatively weak stream can be concentrated into a narrow beam, providing good range; and a large number of lumens will inevitably be needed to effectively cover a wide area.

Note that the coverage angle is not always specified in the characteristics, and even with such data it is difficult to immediately assess the real capabilities of the flashlight. Therefore, for such an assessment, it is best to use information about the actual illumination range (see below), and also take into account the general type of device (see above). For example, for the same number of lumens, a handheld flashlight with a reflector to form a directional beam will give a noticeably greater range than a tourist lamp with 360 ° coverage.

It should also be borne in mind that the high brightness of the flashlight is far from always justified, and it is worth choosing according to this parameter, taking into account the actual conditions of use. So, whe...n working at short ranges, bright light can become a hindrance: it tires the eyes and can blind others. In addition, an increase in brightness usually requires more powerful sources of both light and power, and the weight and dimensions of the lantern increase accordingly.

Lighting range

The maximum range at which the flashlight provides any effective illumination of objects. Different manufacturers have different criteria for this efficiency when measuring ranges, and therefore it is only possible to unequivocally compare among themselves in range only models of one manufacturer. At the same time, this parameter allows us to compare models from different manufacturers with some certainty: for example, flashlights with a lighting range of 15 m and 100 m will clearly belong to different range classes, regardless of manufacturers.

Note that the range of illumination depends not only on the maximum luminous flux provided by the lantern (see above), but also on the features of its design: the narrower the beam is provided by the reflector of the lantern, the greater the range will be, and vice versa — scattered light does not spread far. Some models allow you to adjust the beam width depending on the requirements of the situation (for more details, see "Adjusting the focus").

It is also worth bearing in mind that models with the same claimed lighting range can cover different spaces. For example, a hand lamp (see Type) with a reflector diameter of 20 cm will be able to provide a wider beam than a conventional hand lamp with a 5 cm reflector. And although in both cases the objects that fall into the light spot will be illuminated in the same way, however, in the first case, the size of the spot itself will be larger, and the actual efficiency o...f the flashlight will be correspondingly higher (in light of the fact that it is easier to "feel" individual objects with a wide beam, especially at a considerable distance).

Light angle (light)

The angle of light or illumination provided by a flashlight.

The meaning of these parameters is generally the same — we are talking about the angle that forms the edges of the light flux diverging from the lantern. The only difference is what is meant by edges. So, speaking about the angle of the glow, they usually mean the angle directly between the edges of the main stream; beyond these edges the light does not propagate. And the word "light" refers to a relatively narrow sector in the centre of the light flux; there is also light outside its edges, but its intensity is low, and effective illumination is provided only within the light zone. Thus, there is no fundamental difference between these terms — both of them characterize the width of the sector effectively covered by the lantern.

In addition to the coverage width itself, the luminous flux density and, as a result, the effective illumination range also depend on this indicator. With the same number of lumens (see “Maximum luminous flux”), a small coverage angle allows you to brighter illuminate objects that fall under the beam and provide greater “range”; and a large angle, respectively, will mean extensive coverage, but with a small effective range and less illumination of objects within the beam.

Also note that if the coverage area has the shape of a rectangle, then for different brands (and even in different models of the same brand) this parameter can be designated differently: in som...e cases, the angle is measured along the larger side of the rectangle, in others — diagonally. Most often, this difference is not fundamental, but exceptions are possible; in such cases, you should refer to the official documentation of the manufacturer.

Focus adjustment

The ability to adjust the angle and range of focus the beam of light provided by the flashlight.

With the same value of the light flux (see above), a narrow beam covers a small space, but allows you to shine far and illuminate objects more brightly (because more light enters per unit area). As the angle increases, the range and apparent brightness of the illumination decreases, but the flashlight provides simultaneous illumination for a larger area. Focus adjustment allows you to choose the necessary option from these two (or even some intermediate one), depending on the current situation.

Maximum working hours

Maximum runtime of the flashlight without changing batteries or recharging the battery.

Note that in models with brightness control, this time is indicated for the most modest and, accordingly, economical mode. For example, in a flashlight with a maximum luminous flux of 1000 lm, the claimed operating time of 20 hours can be achieved at a brightness of only 30 lm, and at maximum battery life may not exceed half an hour. These nuances should be clarified according to the detailed characteristics. However, also note that additional modes of operation (see below) are not taken into account in this case: for example, if the flashlight from our example in SOS mode can operate for 30 hours, the characteristics will still state 20 hours.

It is also worth bearing in mind that for models with replaceable batteries, the actual operating time will also depend on the quality of such batteries. For example, for flashlights for AA and AAA elements, battery life is most often given when using high-quality alkaline batteries; if instead of them inexpensive saline ones are used, the operating time may be several times shorter.

In general, when choosing a flashlight according to the maximum operating time, it does not always make sense to focus on “long-playing” models: they often have either low power or impressive weight / dimensions, and the price can significantly “bite”. Flashlights with a long battery life will be useful first of all to those who have to stay...“away from civilization” for a long time: extreme tourists, rescuers, military, etc. And for most everyday tasks in a modern city, and even for trips to nature for several days, up to 10 hours is enough.

Brightness levels

The number of brightness levels provided in the flashlight design. Most modern models have one level of brightness, but there are models with the ability to adjust. Several levels of brightness allow you to choose the best option for a particular case: for example, to view a small room, you can reduce the brightness and save battery power, while in a large warehouse you may need full power of the flashlight. Accordingly, the more brightness levels are provided in the design of the flashlight, the wider your options for choosing the best option will be.

Also note that in addition to step-by-step brightness adjustment, with fixed levels, modern flashlights can also be used with smooth adjustment. It is detailed below; here we note that the stepped format is technically simpler, cheaper, and therefore is used much more often. And in individual lamps, these options are combined — for them, the characteristics indicate both the number of individual brightness levels and the presence of smooth adjustment. The specific way to implement such a combination may be different. For example, a brightness control ring can have several fixed levels with clear values, and the ability to set any intermediate position between these values; the main mode of operation with smooth adjustment can be supplemented with a fixed level of reduced or increased brightness; etc.

Smooth brightness control

The ability to smoothly change the brightness of the lamp.

In general, this function allows you to adjust the mode of operation depending on the situation: for example, to inspect a small room, you can reduce the brightness and save battery power, while in a large warehouse you may need full power of the flashlight. At the same time, smooth adjustment makes it possible to select any brightness level within a certain range and, thus, provides more precise and fine tuning than stepwise adjustment (see "Brightness level"). On the other hand, this option is more expensive, and therefore is much less common. And in some models, both types of adjustment can even be combined. For example, a brightness control ring can have several fixed levels with clear values, and the ability to set any intermediate position between these values; the main mode of operation with smooth adjustment can be supplemented with a fixed level of reduced or increased brightness; etc.

Light sensor

A sensor that monitors the level of ambient light. Used to automatically adjust the brightness of the flashlight to the environment — increase it in the dark when you need the brightest backlight and decrease it when the ambient light level rises. And when exposed to bright light, some of these models go into flashing mode — in order to warn the user and others that the flashlight is not turned off, and at the same time avoid unnecessary energy consumption.

Anyway, the light sensor optimizes battery consumption and improves battery life, without compromising the quality of lighting. On the other hand, this feature affects the cost of the device. Also note that for a number of reasons it is found mainly among headlamps (see "Type").

Additional Modes

The number and types of additional modes of operation provided for in the flashlight.

Additional modes include all modes in which the flashlight operation format differs from the standard “constant luminous flux in the visible range without pronounced coloration”. Namely strobe, SOS, low/high beam, infrared (IR), ultraviolet (UV), red light, blue light, green light etc. More details about each:

— Stroboscope. Fast flashing mode — several flashes per second. One of the most popular applications of this function is disorientation of the enemy in an extreme situation; thus, a stroboscope is often provided in underbarrel flashlights (see "Type"), as well as manual models of "tactical" specialization. In addition, fast blinking is well suited to distinguish yourself on the road — especially in cloudy weather or at night: such a light is much more visible than constant light, including with peripheral vision. At the same time, we note that when using a stroboscope, some caution should be observed: due to the specific effect on the psyche, this mode can provoke exacerbations of certain diseases — for example, seizures in patients with epilepsy.

— S.O.S. The mode...of operation is "three short flashes — three long — three short", which corresponds to the international signal "please help" (letters SOS in Morse code format). This eliminates the need to send such a signal manually and allows you to leave the flashlight to work autonomously, and take care of more pressing problems (which often accompany situations that require SOS).

— Low / high beam. Possibility to switch between far directional beam and near diffused light. This switching is most often accomplished by using multiple sets of LEDs; at the same time, in some models, each of these sets is responsible for its own mode, in others, all diodes work in the high beam, and only a part of them work in the low beam.

— Infrared (IR). Illumination in the invisible infrared range. It is used, in particular, to improve the efficiency of night vision devices and IR sights. Note that many of the LEDs responsible for this mode also glow in the visible range (red light) during operation; however, this glow is quite weak and, usually, is noticeable to the human eye only when looking directly at its source from a short distance.

— Ultraviolet (UV). Illumination in the ultraviolet range is mainly used to identify objects and traces that are invisible under normal lighting. One of the most popular ways to use this feature is with a makeshift currency detector: most modern bills have markings that glow under UV light. Also, such light can be used to detect inscriptions with "invisible" ink (including marks on the same bills), some biological (for example, blood) and chemical liquids (in particular, UV-sensitive compounds can detect leaks in pipes and liquid contours), etc. Note that the UV emitter usually glows in the visible range — with a characteristic bluish tint; this allows you to accurately determine whether such a light is on or off.

— Red light. One of the more popular complementary colours in modern flashlights; can be used both in combination with blue and green (in the so-called RGB models), and as the only auxiliary shade. One of the features of red light is that it practically does not affect night vision, does not penetrate through the eyelids, and even after complete darkness does not blind the eyes. This makes such lighting the best option, for example, for clarifying map data during a night trip, when you need to quickly restore vision after turning off the light, or for emergency lighting in a sleeping room, where you need to see the environment and at the same time it is undesirable to disturb sleeping people with the light. . Another way to use red light is signaling: this light travels farther than blue or green, and stands out prominently against most landscapes and man-made objects. Hue change can be carried out both due to the light filter on the main light source, and due to a separate LED.

— Blue light. One of the shades used in the main three-colour "RGB-lanterns" — along with red (see above) and green. This light is intended mainly for situations where you need to effectively illuminate the space in front of you, but it is undesirable to use ordinary white light. Human vision is most sensitive just to blue and green shades; therefore, a relatively weak blue light flux allows a large amount of detail to be revealed. And in some situations, such lighting can be even more effective than white. For example, if at night a white lantern is pointed at a light object, then the space behind this object will be hardly noticeable due to the bright reflected light; and a weak blue light will evenly highlight both the "foreground" and the "background". But using this shade at high brightness, on the contrary, is undesirable — reflection from bright blue light will dazzle even more than from white, and even more so red. And if a blue beam, even a weak one, hits directly into the eyes, it will instantly knock out night vision, and it will take quite a long time to restore it.
Note that the choice between blue and the similar green (see below) depends on the specific situation: different shades may be optimal in different situations.

— Green light. Hue, most commonly used in tri-colour RGB lights, but sometimes used as the only complementary colour. In many ways it is similar to the blue described above — in particular, in some situations, a weak green light can clearly reveal details that are invisible in other shades (even under the same blue light), but high brightness is undesirable for such a beam. In addition, this colour has its own specific feature: many animals almost do not react to green light, so it is especially convenient for hunting.

— Lighthouse. Mode of infrequent flashes — most often at a relatively low brightness, but exceptions are possible; and in some models you can find more than one version of the lighthouse. Anyway, this function is well suited for signaling and indicating your location; at the same time, the beacon not only consumes battery power more economically than a constant light of the same brightness, but is also better visible from a distance. Also note that in headlamps, the flicker mode performs a similar function (see below).

— Flicker. In fact, it is an analogue of the beacon described above, used in head models (see "Type"). In this mode, the flashlight emits short flashes or shines with a variable, "pulsating" brightness. Anyway, this format of work is not intended to illuminate the surrounding area, but to make the user more visible to others: a person reacts to flickering light purely reflexively, even if the source of such light is far in the zone of peripheral vision. The beacon mode will be useful primarily on the roads — for example, when walking or cycling at night: even in the city, such a warning for surrounding drivers will not be superfluous, and there is no need to talk about dark country roads.

— Red blinking (red blinking, red beacon). This mode allows you to make the flashlight as noticeable as possible: the red light, especially the flashing one, catches the eye even in the daytime. And in the dark, this shade is also useful due to the fact that it does not harm night vision (for more on this, see "Red Light" above). But the specific specialization of the red flashing may be different, depending on the specialization of the flashlight. For example, in tourist models (see "Type"), this mode allows you to give a signal, indicate the location of the camp, collection points, etc.; and in headbands, it is used to highlight the user on the road and make him as visible as possible to others (primarily for car drivers).

— Lamp mode. A function found mainly in hand-held luminaires (see "Type"). In fact, we are talking about a diffused light mode — as opposed to a directional beam, which provides the main light source with a reflector. Diffused light does not differ in range, but it allows you to cover a significant space — for example, to illuminate an entire room. Accordingly, the lamp mode significantly expands the possibilities for using the lamp.

— Side light. One of the names for the lamp mode described above; the diffuse light source used for this mode is often located on the side of the luminaire body — hence the name.

— LCU. Laser pointer mode: the flashlight emits a laser beam, the mark from which points to the intended point of impact. It makes sense to provide such a regime only in underbarrel models (see "Type").

Note that this list is not exhaustive: modern flashlights may provide other, more specific modes of operation. In such cases, the features of the functionality should be clarified according to the manufacturer's documentation.

In box



Battery charger. A device for charging the batteries supplied with the flashlight. Only models with removable batteries are equipped with such a device — in fact, the battery must be removed to charge. This may create some inconvenience. On the other hand, batteries are usually made in a standard size, which gives many additional options. For example, you can buy a spare set of batteries and use it while the main one is charging, or even put disposable batteries instead of "native" batteries; The charger can be used not only for flashlight batteries, but also for other compatible batteries.

Flashlight charger. A device for charging batteries directly in the flashlight. Note that models with both non-removable and removable batteries can be equipped with such a “charger”. Anyway, such devices are extremely easy to use: you do not need to remove the batteries and put them in a separate device, just connect the flashlight to a socket, auto socket or USB port (charger devices can use different power sources, this should be specified separately). In addition, some flashlights with this function are able to work even while the battery is charging (essentially from the mains). At the same time, chargers of this type are not as versatile as "chargers" for individual batteries (see the relevant paragraph).

Car charger....The presence in the kit of a device for charging a flashlight from a car cigarette lighter (or a standard auto socket of the same size). Typically, such a device has the form of a simple plug with a cable; the cable can be made detachable. And in some models, there is no separate car charger at all: to charge the battery, the flashlight itself is inserted into the cigarette lighter socket, and the body of the device plays the role of a plug. See "Power — Cigarette Lighter" for details.

— Battery. A battery is included with the flashlight. This feature allows you to use the flashlight immediately after purchase, without buying batteries separately. Note that the presence or absence of a battery in the kit does not depend on the type of battery itself (see "Power"): for example, models for the original battery are not always equipped with such a battery. Therefore, if readiness for work “out of the box” is critical, you should choose a flashlight for which the battery is directly claimed in the kit. At the same time, it's ok to clarify which element the product is equipped with — a disposable battery or a rechargeable battery.

— Light filters. Removable filters, commonly used to colour the beam of a flashlight in one colour or another — red, blue and/or green. See "Additional Modes" for more information on such colored lighting; Here we note two points. Firstly, the set of light filters can be different: for example, red light is common, but green and blue are much less common. At the same time, for some lamps, additional light filters are produced separately, they can be purchased in addition if necessary. Secondly, if a flashlight with colored light does not have filters in the kit, it means that this model uses separate colored diodes or, much less often, built-in filters. Both the one and the other option turns out to be more convenient from the point of view that you don’t need to mess around with interchangeable accessories (which you can forget somewhere or lose) to switch colours. On the other hand, additional equipment somewhat complicates and increases the cost of the design of the entire device.

Clip for carrying. The presence in the design of the flashlight of a special clip (clips) — similar to that used in portable players, ballpoint pens, etc. This clip allows you to fix the flashlight on clothing, for example, on the edge of a pocket. This function is intended primarily for ease of wearing: a flashlight fixed with a clip will always be in one place, without getting lost or confused in your pocket.

Strap. The presence in the design of the lantern strap for fastening on the hand. It protects the device from falling: even if you accidentally open your fingers, the strap will hold the flashlight on your hand (or at least delay the fall so that you have time to react). And in diving models (see "Type"), such a device can, on the contrary, keep the flashlight from floating up. In large handheld fixtures, the strap may be designed for ease of carrying on the shoulder, but such options are quite rare.

Case. Availability in a set of delivery of a special cover for storage and transportation of a lamp. Such a case protects the device from unnecessary contamination and provides some degree of protection against damage. In addition, it can come in handy for protecting surrounding fragile items — for example, if you have to transport them along with a flashlight in a tightly packed bag or backpack.

Underbarrel mount. Attachment for mounting an underbarrel flashlight (see "Type") on a weapon. Most often, such a mount is designed for a standard Picatinny / Weaver rail, but other options are possible; This point does not hurt to clarify before buying. Anyway, this equipment is convenient because the mount does not need to be looked for separately; on the other hand, it may not be suitable for non-standard "seats".

— Without fastening. The absence of a mount on a weapon in the delivery set of an underbarrel flashlight (see "Type"). Such models were originally intended for use for a different purpose — usually as hand-held compact ones (see ibid.), and the possibility of installation under the barrel is provided as an option. Also, you should pay attention to this option if the weapon has a non-standard way of installing flashlights — the mount for such an installation is easiest to buy separately from the flashlight.

Contactless control

The ability to control the flashlight "from a distance", usually with hand gestures.

This function is found mainly in headlamp models (see "Type") — it is in such lamps that it is most justified, taking into account the specifics of the application. The IR sensor in the front of the case is usually responsible for contactless control : by waving your hand in front of it, you can turn the flashlight on and off. It is faster, more convenient, and often safer than looking for a switch on the case. In this case, the sensor is configured in such a way as to prevent false positives as much as possible (for example, when approaching an obstacle). And models with several brightness modes usually have a memory of the last mode — the flashlight turns on at the same setting at which it was turned off.

Remote button

On / off button, placed outside the body of the lamp and connected to it with a wire. A similar button is found exclusively in underbarrel flashlights (see "Type"): when installed on a weapon, it is attached under the shooter's hand, which allows you to turn the light on and off without removing your hands from the weapon and without changing your grip. At the same time, some models with this function are turned on and off only by a remote button, in others it is provided in addition to the switch on the case. At the same time, some models with this function are turned on and off only by a remote button, in others it is provided in addition to the switch on the case, and in others it is possible to replace a conventional switch with a separate button and vice versa.

Shock resistance

Additional resistance of the flashlight to various kinds of shocks and shocks. The specific degree of shock protection for different models varies, sometimes quite noticeably; This point should be clarified according to the official documentation. At the same time, the vast majority of shock-resistant models are able to transfer at least a fall from their hands onto a hard surface without consequences, and anyway they are more durable than unprotected flashlights.

It is recommended to specially select a shock-resistant model, first of all, if your activity involves a corresponding risk — for example, extreme tourism, speleology, military affairs, security activities.

Moisture protection

This feature is indicated for flashlights, the housings of which have an increased (compared to conventional housings) degree of dust and moisture protection. The degree of such protection can be different: for example, some models normally tolerate heavy rain, others “survive” getting into a sea wave, and the most advanced ones can even be used when scuba diving (see “Type — For diving ”). Protection features should be specified in each case separately; however, if you need a flashlight that can endure adverse conditions, it is definitely worth looking for it among models in which dust and moisture protection is directly stated. Such models will be useful primarily for those who often have to work in difficult environments: climbers and other "extreme" tourists, rescuers, military, sailors, etc.

The level of protection is often indicated by two numbers according to the IP standard. The first digit corresponds to dust protection; usually, it is indicated in flashlights only if this indicator is maximum — level 6, full dust tightness. The second digit indicates the degree of protection against water, here in protected models there is usually a level of 7 (the possibility of immersion under water to a depth of 1 m for half an hour) or 8 (the possibility of prolonged work under water at a depth of more than 1 m). Thus, the maximum degree of protection according to this standard is IP68, complete tightness.... There is also a marking of the form IPX8, where the first digit is not indicated — this only means that the flashlight has not passed official certification for dust resistance. In the above example, this is not necessary — water resistance 8 automatically means a sealed case, impervious to dust.

Note that even fully sealed models may have different restrictions on the maximum immersion depth. So if you are going to use the flashlight extensively underwater, you should make sure that it will be able to transfer dives to the planned depth.

Reflective elements

Additional inserts on the straps of the headlamp, made of a special reflective material. The main purpose of reflective elements is to make a person more visible, in particular on the road at night.

Button lock

The ability to block the flashlight control buttons.

This function ensures that the flashlight will not turn on in a pocket, bag, backpack, etc. and will not drain the battery by running "idle" during transportation. The specific implementation of the lock may be different, but most often it is turned on and off in a way that excludes accidents as much as possible — for example, by simultaneously pressing two buttons for a long time.

Hanging hook

a nail, a loop under the ceiling of a tent, an element of tourist or military equipment, etc. This is not necessarily a hook — devices in the form of a loop or carabiner can be provided for the same purpose. However, anyway, this feature is most popular in three types of lamps: tourist, hand lamps and auxiliary lighting.

Among tourist lanterns, most models are equipped with a hook for hanging. This is due to the initial specifics of the use of such devices — see "Type" for details. In auxiliary lighting, such a detail is much less common — many of these lamps are designed to be installed on the floor or on a table rather than hanging. The same applies to hand-held lamps — however, here the main option is to carry in your hands, and not to install on a flat surface. Also note that many hand-held luminaires with this feature are either originally designed for diffused light, or have a corresponding additional function (see "Additional Modes").

Built-in magnet

A permanent type magnet built right into the body of the flashlight.

The built-in magnet is selected so that it can hold the flashlight on a steel or other magnetic surface. At the same time, in many models, the magnet is placed at the end of the elongated body and allows you to “stick” the device to at least a horizontal surface, and often also to vertical walls. Anyway, this function allows you to at least fix the flashlight on magnetic materials, freeing your hands; this can be a great alternative to the hanging hook (see above), especially if there are no hooks nearby. And in some flashlights, a magnetic latch is also used to secure the plug from the charger; in models with such functionality, it may even be possible to mount the charger on the wall and simply hang a flashlight on it to replenish the energy supply.

Solar battery

The presence of a solar battery in the design of the lantern — a photocell that generates current when light hits it. This current is used to recharge the flashlight battery. Thus, periodically exposing the flashlight to the light, you can significantly extend the time of its operation without recharging the battery (or even do without recharging at all). This can be very useful during a long stay away from civilization — for example, on a multi-day hike.

Note that the name " solar battery " does not mean that the solar cell only works in direct sunlight. Charging can also take place in cloudy weather, and even under artificial lighting, unless its efficiency will be lower than under the sun.

Power source

The type of batteries used in the flashlight.

The most popular nowadays are replaceable cells in sizes AA, AAA, C, D and CR123, replaceable lithium-ion 18650 batteries, as well as branded batteries. At the same time, some models from the latter category are designed for standard batteries for power tools and are supplied without their own power sources at all; such devices are commonly referred to as the so-called building lights. And here is a more detailed description of the different types of food:

AA. Batteries, colloquially known as "finger-type" batteries. One of the most common sizes nowadays; such cells are available both as disposable batteries and as rechargeable batteries, and they are sold almost everywhere. On the other hand, in modern flashlights this option is less common than the more miniature AAA — the development and reduction in the cost of LEDs has made it possible to effectively use more compact power supplies.
Note that "finger" batteries can vary markedly in capacity; accordingly, the battery life of a flashlight with such a power supply will be different — depending on the brand of batteries (accumulators) used. Also note that the use of such cells (like most replacement batteries) is inevitably associate...d with additional expenses: you will either have to regularly buy fresh disposable cells, or spend money on a set of batteries with a charger.

— AAA. They are also "little finger" batteries — by analogy with the "finger" ones described above. They are also available in different formats — both batteries and accumulators — and in different capacities and prices. They are smaller than AA, which is why they are generally inferior to them in terms of capacity. On the other hand, modern LEDs often have enough of such power; and compactness is often more important than high capacity. Therefore, AAA elements in modern flashlights are much more common than AA.

— C. 1.5-volt cylindrical batteries with dimensions of 50x26.2 mm; approximately equal in length to AA, but much thicker, due to which they have a much higher capacity. Some time ago they were quite popular, but now they are used extremely rarely — mainly in devices where the dimensions of the case initially allow the installation of such power sources (a typical example is batons, see "Type").

— D. Cylindrical batteries, the largest (61.5x34.2 mm), capacious and powerful among the currently used 1.5-volt power supplies. Similar to the elements of type C described above, they are rarely used, mainly in lanterns that initially assume large sizes.

— CR123. Cylindrical batteries. They have a length of 34.5 mm and a diameter of 17 mm, due to which they resemble a smaller variation of type C, but differ in operating voltage — 3 V. In the battery version, they are marked as CR123A. In general, they are quite rare, mainly in hand-held compact models and key chains, as well as underbarrel flashlights for pistols (see "Type"); however, specifically among these categories, such batteries are quite popular.

— 18650. In general, nowadays, a whole family of batteries is produced that use a 5-digit marking — for example, 14500 and 17650. All of them are made using lithium-ion technology, and have a cylindrical shape and a voltage of 3.7 V; the marking indicates the dimensions of such batteries in diameter and length (see below for more details). Specifically, 18650 (diameter 18 mm, length 65 mm) is the most popular type of such elements — both in general and specifically among flashlights. This is primarily due to the combination of compact dimensions and fairly solid performance. At the same time, thanks to cheaper technologies, 18650 batteries can now be used even in low-cost models — including those initially supplied in the kit. However, anyway, it would not hurt to clarify the complete set of a flashlight with such a power supply separately — and this applies to both the battery and the options for charging it available “out of the box” (for more details, see “Packaging”).
In general, such elements combine the advantages of replaceable batteries and branded batteries. On the one hand, the power source is reusable; when the charge is exhausted, you do not need to spend money on fresh batteries every time; on the other hand, if desired, you can purchase several batteries and quickly change them as needed. And with a separate charger, you can completely reduce work interruptions to zero: while one set of batteries is in use, the rest can be charged.

— Accumulator. This option means that the flashlight uses a branded battery that does not belong to standard sizes (and in many models it is also non-removable). One of the advantages of such a power supply is that the user does not need to spend additional time and money on buying batteries: the power supply is initially supplied in the kit, and when the energy is depleted, it is enough to charge it. At the same time, the delivery set may include both an adapter for an outlet and a car charger (for more details, see "Packaging"). The second advantage is that branded batteries are often more compact and at the same time more capacious than replacement batteries; and in general, such a battery is easier to fit into the design of a flashlight (especially non-standard). Among the key disadvantages of this option, first of all, the impossibility of a quick replacement can be noted — usually, a dead battery needs to be charged, which takes time and a power source. In addition, having your own battery inevitably affects the cost; this is especially noticeable when comparing low-cost models of rechargeable flashlights with battery-powered counterparts. However, the difference in price can quickly pay off with intensive use.
A special case is the so-called "construction" rechargeable lights. They are produced mainly by large manufacturers of power tools (Bosch, DeWalt, Makita, etc.) and use replaceable batteries for tools of the “native” brand as power sources. At the same time, such a battery is usually not included in the kit — it is assumed that it is more convenient for the user to buy a battery on their own, at their discretion (or that the household already has a branded tool and, accordingly, a power source).

In addition, more rare and specific food options can be found in flashlights:

— AAAA. Batteries are even smaller than the "little finger" AAA — 43 mm in length and 8.3 mm in diameter. They are used in some thin compact format lanterns, many of these models resemble fountain pens in shape and size.

— Replaceable Li-Ion batteries with a 5-digit digital marking — similar to the 18650 described above, but differing in size. Specifically, among the flashlights you can find the following form factors of similar power supplies: 10180, 10440, 14430, 14500, 16340, 17650, 21700, 26650, 32650. All of them have a standard voltage of 3.7 V, and the size of the element can be determined by marking: the first two digits correspond to its diameter, the second two to its length (both in millimetres). The larger the battery, the higher its capacity and, accordingly, the power supply.
Separately, it is worth noting that the 14500 cells are identical in size to conventional AAA finger batteries, but differ from them in operating voltage. In some flashlights this difference is taken into account, and they can use both types of power sources (with less battery life and/or brightness when running on batteries). However, in general, the possibility of such a replacement needs to be clarified in each case.

— Series CR****. Batteries — "coins" of a characteristic disk-shaped form based on lithium technology (not to be confused with lithium-ion batteries — in this case we are talking about disposable power supplies). The numbers in the marking indicate a specific size — for example, the CR2032 marking corresponds to 20 mm in diameter and 3.2 mm in thickness. Actually, CR2032 is one of the most popular sizes of such batteries; besides him, you can find CR1220, CR1616, CR2016 and CR2032 in flashlights. All such power sources are mainly used in compact low-power flashlights, in particular, key fobs (see "Type").

— Series AG**. The "AG" suffix with a number (one or two) is used to refer to miniature alkaline manganese type disposable batteries manufactured by Seiko and some other brands. The larger the number in the designation, the larger the size of the battery: the smallest of these elements, AG0, have a diameter of 5.8 mm and a thickness of just over 2 mm, and the largest (of those used in flashlights), AG13, are 11.6 mm in diameter and 5.4 mm thick. The main scope of such elements is miniature flashlights, including key chains.

— Series LR**. In fact, it is a complete analogue of the AG series described above **; the only difference is that AG is a brand name, while LR is used as a common international designation. In addition, there is no clear relationship in this standard between the number in the designation and the actual dimensions of the battery: for example, LR41 is larger than LR58, and LR44 is larger than both of them. Actually, in modern flashlights there are mainly just LR41 and LR44; they are analogues of AG3 and AG13, respectively, and have dimensions (length / diameter) of 7.9x3.6 mm in the first case and 11.6x5.4 mm in the second.

— 3R12. Batteries with a voltage of 4.5 V in a case of a characteristic shape: almost square and flat (70x60x22 mm), with rounded corners and two contact plates in the upper part. They were originally created as batteries for flashlights, but nowadays they are used quite rarely due to their large dimensions, shape features and relatively small capacity.

— PX28L. Compact and at the same time quite powerful cylindrical batteries with a nominal voltage of 6.2 V. They are well suited for working with a powerful load, including bright LEDs, but in general they are not widely used, and therefore they are rarely used in flashlights.

— R20. Another name for replaceable cells in size D is, more precisely, for disposable salt batteries produced in this size (other designations are used for other varieties). Usually, flashlights under R20 are compatible with any type D elements, however, the ability to work with salt batteries (having a lower capacity than alkaline counterparts, and even more so batteries) indicates a good energy efficiency and economy of the flashlight.

— CR2. Relatively small batteries (length — 26.7 mm, diameter — 15.1 mm), originally created for compact "soap" cameras — in the expectation that one such element could replace 2 AA batteries. The designation CR2 is commonly used for disposable batteries, batteries of this size are usually referred to as 15270.

— From the cigarette lighter. Power from the car on-board network through the cigarette lighter (or an auto socket of a similar format) can be found in two types of lamps. The first is hand lamps and auxiliary lighting (see "Type") designed for use with or near the vehicle. Most of these devices only work when connected to the cigarette lighter, and a fairly long (several metres) wire with an appropriate plug is responsible for the connection itself. The second option is miniature models (manual compact type and key rings) of “automotive” specialization. Such devices are equipped with their own batteries and are able to work autonomously, and the cigarette lighter is used to charge the battery — and the flashlight body itself plays the role of a plug (in other words, to charge, just insert the device into the cigarette lighter socket). However, both varieties are rare nowadays: in the case of lamps, the wire significantly limits mobility, and in the case of small flashlights, charging from the car network is not so often required. And even in the latter case, a more practical, versatile and convenient option may be a traditional rechargeable flashlight, supplemented by a car charger (see "Complete set").

Battery capacity

The capacity of the battery provided in the design or delivery of the flashlight.

Theoretically, a higher capacity allows to achieve greater battery life, but in fact, not everything is so simple. Firstly, the actual battery life will also depend on power consumption — and it can be different even in models with the same luminous flux (this is due to the difference in the characteristics of individual LEDs). Secondly, the physical features of the designation in milliamp-hours (mAh) are such that only batteries with the same nominal voltage can be directly compared by this indicator (in other cases, indicators must be recalculated using special formulas).

In light of all this, we can say that battery capacity is more of a reference than a practically significant parameter. So, in some cases, it allows you to compare different models of flashlights with each other, but only very approximately. For example, a device with a 1600 mAh battery will definitely have a longer battery life than a model with an 800 mAh battery that is similar in brightness, lamp type and “weight category”; but how much battery life will be higher is impossible to say for sure. So, in order to assess the practical capabilities of a flashlight, it is worth focus on more "close to life" characteristics — first of all, on the directly claimed maximum battery life (see above), as well as battery life indicators in different modes indicated in the manufacturer's documentation.

Battery Model

Model of the battery supplied with the flashlight.

This parameter is specified mainly for lanterns of "construction" specialization, initially equipped with batteries. Recall that these flashlights use standard batteries, originally intended for power tools from the same manufacturer; and such a configuration option is generally not typical for them (for more details, see "Power — Battery"), however, there are exceptions.

Knowing the model of the battery supplied with the flashlight, you can:

— evaluate for which other devices (primarily power tools) this power source is suitable;
— determine which battery you need to buy as a spare (if it is assumed that one battery will not be enough initially);
— find detailed data on the battery — up to reviews and results of practical tests.

Compatible batteries

Battery models that the flashlight is initially compatible with.

Such information is specified mainly for the so — called building models. Such flashlights are devices manufactured by major manufacturers of power tools and are designed for standard batteries used in tools of the corresponding brand; moreover, the batteries themselves are most often not included in the delivery set. Accordingly, data on compatible batteries is necessary to find and purchase a suitable power source — or to select a flashlight for a battery from an existing power tool.

USB charging

The ability to charge the flashlight from a standard USB port. Such connectors are mandatory for modern computers and laptops, they are found in other types of equipment (from tablets to audio systems); in addition, USB power adapters are available for household outlets and car cigarette lighters. Thus, charging from USB significantly expands the capabilities of the flashlight: instead of a specialized charger (which, moreover, you can forget or lose), you can use any USB port for this.

Note that compact models (for example, key fobs — see "Type") often come with their own USB plugs, but larger flashlights may require a cable.

Charge level indicator

An indicator that indicates the level of charge of the battery installed in the flashlight. The design and functionality of such an indicator can be different — from a simple LED that changes colour and/or mode of operation depending on the state of the battery, to an LCD display that can display a specific charge level. However, anyway , the charge level indicator makes it easier to monitor the state of the battery and reduces the likelihood of being left without light at the most inopportune moment.

Power bank function

The ability to operate the flashlight in power bank mode — an external battery for various portable devices, primarily smartphones and tablets.

The Power bank mode allows you to recharge portable gadgets from your flashlight's own battery. It can become a real salvation in nature or on the road, when there are no sockets and other power sources nearby, and you need to charge the gadget urgently (for example, if we are talking about a phone used as the main means of communication). Of course, such charging wastes part of the battery energy and reduces the battery life of the flashlight itself. However, models with this function, usually, use fairly powerful batteries with a good supply of energy, and their battery life remains very decent even after working in Power Bank mode. And some flashlights even have built-in limiters that do not allow you to discharge your own battery “to zero” when charging an external device.

Material

— Plastic. Of the advantages of plastic flashlights, one can note their low weight and good suitability for low temperatures. In particular, this material does not "cool" the hand as much as metal, and has a lower thermal conductivity (which reduces the risk of battery hypothermia). On the other hand, plastic cases are significantly less durable. As a result, they are mainly used in cases where light weight is crucial — in particular, in headlamps and tourist lanterns (see "Type").

— Metal. The main advantage of metal flashlights is high strength. Metal weighs significantly more than plastic, but in some cases this can also be a positive feature: "heavy" devices are often more pleasant in the hand and are perceived as more solid and reliable than light flashlights. At the same time, such cases are colder than plastic cases to the touch, which can create some discomfort at low temperatures; Yes, and they cost a little more.
Note that the most popular type of metal in flashlights is aluminium alloy — light and at the same time strong, durable and corrosion resistant material. The reliability of this alloy is enough even for full-fledged batons (see below). So other types of metal are extremely rare. Cases made of titanium are a separate case — they are placed in a separate category, described below.

— Titan. Titanium alloys are distinguished by their lightnes...s, low thermal conductivity (they do not “cool” the hand as much as other metals) and extremely high strength, however, they are very expensive. Titanium case, usually, is a sign of a very advanced flashlight, which is why this option is not included in the "metal" category, but is taken out separately.

— Metal / plastic. Cases that combine metal and plastic elements are a relatively rare option, found mainly in flashlights with the function of headrests (see "Type"). In such models, at least a part of the lantern is usually made of metal, including a lamp and optics, and often the entire “head”; other hard parts (platform for attaching to belts, buckles on belts, etc.) are made of plastic. This allows to provide sufficiently high reliability and at the same time to reduce the cost.
Other types of lanterns with this design are noticeably less common — hand-held "compacts" and lamps, tourist models, etc. They have the same general idea: the most critical parts that require high strength are made of metal, and the rest are made of plastic (to reduce weight and cost). At the same time, for a number of reasons, models in combined cases that are not related to “headbands” have not received distribution.

Manufacturer's warranty

Manufacturer's warranty provided for this model.

In fact, this is the minimum service life promised by the manufacturer, subject to the rules of operation. Most often, the actual service life of the device is much longer than the guaranteed one. At the same time, it should be understood that there are always exceptions. And stores can even cut the guarantee documented. But anyway, the higher the manufacturer's official warranty, the more reliable the model is considered.
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