My Thorfire PF 04 review

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Speedsix
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Location: San Diego, California
My Thorfire PF 04 review

Thorfire was kind enough to provide some of us free PF04s in exchange for a review. I considered that a very fair deal as I was considering buying the PF04 as I am a penlight and headlight fan. I would have posted a review had I bought it anyway. I won’t let a free light color my review because my honor is worth more than $19.99. Lol.

I use a penlight at work every single day many times. It’s a tool to me not a toy or fun light. I need it to do my job and it has to preform or it gets tossed in the cabinet with my other lights.

I didn’t want to post a review until I have been able to use it for several days at work. Now I have and I can report one it.

My go to EDC is a Pelican 1920 (newer version). I used to carry the older one mode version which is a great penlight as well. I will be comparing it to the newer Pelican 1920 because that’s what I’m most used to.

Pros:
1. Nicer tint than the 1920. Neither are “warm” but the Thorfire is warmer than the Pelican.

2. Thinner, lighter and shorter than the 1920.

3. More floody than 1920, this could also be a con depending on preference.

4. Nice beam with no artifacts. Good transition from bright center to flood.

5. Mode memory! Good UI. You can just keep it in whatever mode you like and never have to deal with modes if you don’t want to.

6. Nice mode spacing between high and med. it has a ultra low moonlight mode that I will only ever use if I happen to need to read a map while camping or hiking in the dark.

Cons:
1. Lack of throw. For me, I want a tight beam in my penlight so it will throw light to where I need it. When I need flood, I use my headlamp which imho should be pure flood for working at arms length. These things are purely my own preference and others may want the opposite of what I want. This is my personal review so it’s a con for a penlight to be floody. The PF04 is not super floody but it lacks the throw of the Pelican.

2. Reverse clicky. I prefer a forward clicky but when you have modes like this light does, a reverse clicky makes more sense. In using it, it has not been an issue for me.

3. Slightly slippery compared to the Pelican 1920. It has a decent amount of traction for your hand with texture in places but the majority is fairly smooth and when your hands are sweaty or have oil on them, it could slip a bit. Not a real problem that I have noticed but since the Pelican is better in this regard, it’s a con.

4. Clip snaps on instead of being attached with a ring like the Pelican. In theory, this is less secure and it could snap off. In practice, it’s a strong clip and has not moved around or come loose so I only mention it as a possible con.

This is my first Thorfire product and I’m happy with it. I consider it a good buy at the asking price. It’s a $20 light compared to the $30 Pelican and I feel it represents a solid value. It’s a true penlight being slim and compact. The Pelican is a bit on the fat side for a AAA light and could nearly be a AA light it is so thick. I can’t comment on durability yet as I have not put it through any rough use. It has worked perfectly every time so far with zero issues. I use Eneloops and it seems to like them. Some have commented that the earlier version had a stiff switch, my light had a perfectly normal switch with reasonable pressure needed. I wouldn’t want it any stiffer or lighter. I think they fixed it and got the pressure just right in the latest version.

Bottom line, this is a great little penlight if you are looking for something slim with multiple modes and don’t require a super tight beam. At $20, I think it may be the best penlight out there. I own the Streamlight Stylus pro which is the closest competitor in this price range and the Thorfire beats it in almost every way. I like it so much, I will continue to carry it at work until there is a reason not to. I will update this review if it develops reliability issues or I have more insights in the future.

Edited by: sb56637 on 09/02/2017 - 12:07
The Miller
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Nice review, bam to the point! Thanks.

Speedsix
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If I could tweak this light to make it perfect for me, I would make it more throwy, dump the moonlight mode and give it a forward clicky. That would make this a great penlight for me.

I have been using it as is and I do like it.

Speedsix
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Two month update. I have been using this as my only flashlight at work since I got this 2 months ago. Everyday. There have been no issues at all with it. Eats batteries on high but does well on medium and medium is a usable mode with a good amount of light. The moonlight mode is totally worthless in my opinion. It doesn’t provide any visable light for any situation I can ever see myself getting into.

This light would be better suited with a low mode mode than a moonlight. A 5-10 lumen low would actually come in handy at times. The moonlight is just a nuisance because I can’t even tell if it’s on without looking at the lens end. Even with my hand in front of the lens, not enough light is produced for me to see if it’s on if there is any ambient lighting. This moonlight would only ever be useful in total darkness with night adjusted eyes and then I’m still not sure what I would use it for. I have never used it once and will probably never use it.

This moonlight mode is so low that I almost consider it a flaw. It’s about as useful as strobe mode. I have never been a fan of moonlight modes. I feel it’s one of those things flashaholics tell manufacturers that they want but the less vocal flashlight users like myself don’t actually want.

firedome
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Thanks for the update! Thumbs Up

We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light --- Plato