How to Choose an LED Flashlight

Few things are more prized by a lover of survival during the night that your flashlight (good and bonfire). And it is that lighting is very important in camping and night walks in the mountain. Today already are not enough old Pocket flashlights and we have modern lanterns leds for all tastes and all situations.

There are lanterns with multiple sizes and designs designed to bring key fob, the pouch, backpacks, car, head out camping… Clearly, we also have a good range of prices. Choose a flashlight requires at least one small reflection since it might be a high investment, and therefore we should know some of its features and components.

Parts of a flashlight:

A bit of theory:

The most important part is logically led and this depends on the brightness and consumption of our flashlight. We are going to focus on learning a little theory about leds.

I will try to explain it in quickly and easily. The information that you will find in the headlights, concerning lighting, will be the lumens and sometimes candles, viewing angle or subject distance. We will explain these concepts

Lumens: is the brightness, the total amount of light emitting LED, regardless of how distributed.

Candles: It is the intensity of light, i.e., as it disperses the light emitted by the LED. It is measured as lumen between the solid angle. If we have a sphere imaginary and in the Middle a LED, the surface of this sphere between the RADIUS squared (S/r ^ 2) will be the solid angle that is measured in steradians (sr). Example: a quarter sphere has a surface of 4 * Pi * r ^ 2 / (4 * r ^ 2) = Pi steradians

Finally, the lumens emitted by the LED between the solid angle gives us the number of candelas. Candles give us an idea of how light is scattered. (If you get lost don’t worry that you’re now going to better understand)

Lux: and how much light is distributed on the surface that I’m pointing my flashlight? That’s the lux, indicating the amount of lumens per square meter of surface. Remember, the candles tell us as disperses light in space and lights them as it spreads to be projected on a surface.

Logically, a complete lighting angle that offers us the flashlight, the light that emits (lumens) will disperse more (less candles) and less light will reach the surface which we are aiming (lux).

If have you two lanterns of the same amount of lumens but different angle of dispersion, the largest angle repartuira more light so that it is characterized by less candles, Lux and less distance lighting. The lower lighting angle less scattered light and can illuminate at a greater distance, but at the cost of see worse what is sideways.

Color: this is more difficult to specify it. There are LEDs that offer good gloss but then are flashlights with a “nasty” light, which pulls towards greenish or purplish tones. Light tones vary due to the color of the resin that lines the LED.

Warmth: many have heard of cold or warm light. That gives us an idea of as similar to the light of the Sun is the light emitted from a LED. Cold lights are the typical of the first appearing and LEDs light bulbs or fluorescent, theas tipic of the kitchens and schools. The warm lights are as of the old light bulbs incandescent filament, which offer a more yellowish light. A warm light helps to better distinguish the real colors, our eye is better suited for this type of lights.

The market:

There are many manufacturers of leds but one stands out above the rest in terms of leds for headlights: think. This manufacturer has several ranges of leds for more or less powerful flashlights. Today, the families of most modern leds leds believes that the flashlight manufacturers incorporating are:

-XP-G2 for little lanterns power, with AA and AAA, batteries that often reach over 200 lumens.

-XM-L2 for linternes of up to some 1,000 lumens that can employ a variety of batteries

-MK-R for headlights high power (and price), reaching up to more than 2,000 lumens.

Within these families, there are different models of leds listed with a letter and a number, the better at the end of the alphabet is in the letter and greater the number, the more efficient and higher brightness will be led. Thus, within the former families we find the following ordered leds of lowest to highest efficiency:

XP-G2 family: P3, P4, Q1, Q2, Q3, Q4, Q5, R2, R3, R4, R5, S2, S3 and S4.

Family XM-L2: S3, S4, S5, S6, T2, T3, T4, T5, T6, U2 and U3.

Family MK-R: D2, D4, E2, E4, F2, F4, G2, G4, H2, H4, J2, J4 and K2.

Choosing the flashlight:

Finally and to help you choose the flashlight that best suits you, I suggest to take a look at these five points:

Size. It will depend of you want it and where it will save.

Led: required brightness and warmth you prefer.

Batteries : do you prefer less powerful but accessible and cheap or powerful, expensive and harder-to-find batteries?

Resistance: How shock resistant is? is it waterproof? These factors are decisive for you.

Functions and accessories. If you going to take on the head, if you want to serve lamp, etc. No point you 6000 lumens if you want it to head and there is no way to carry.

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