Hedgehog Loves BLF Reviews!

I own quite a few lights and am a member of CandlepowerForums, but they weren’t meeting a new need, which is how I wound up here.

Years back my interest really took off when I picked up some Streamlight AAA x1 & x2 LED EDC lights and a 3-button-cell keychain light at a U-Haul store that were very reasonably priced. They’re tough and a step up from the Maglight AA x2 I was carrying, which did work well, but bulbs….ugh—they have their place, but they do give out. I also had a Dewalt 14.4 gooseneck and Milwaukee 18V, so was pretty well covered, but though bulbs get the job done are yellow, use a lot of power, and break filaments at the worst times. The three Streamlights worked well and did the job with no real need to replace them; for their size I was really impressed.

Eight years later I got a really handy ThruNite Ti3 LED AAA x1 EDC light as a gift with quite a few functions and loved it. Then one day I went to use it and it didn’t work. It seems the head got bumped and turned it on, it overheated and burned out. It wouldn’t fit rechargeable cells, the price went way up, and while the body was great the electronics quality was meh. The casual search for a replacement started.

I went looking for a new dual-use Streamlight EDC & weapon light and wasn’t impressed with their remote switch failure rate, overall "average" quality, high price, and they weren’t that easy to operate—my existing tail light switches were really difficult to access/operate and that design issue hadn’t improved with time. It looked like Streamlight were now high-end Chinese products that couldn’t justify the price.

I wanted reliability, illumination, durability, and a small size so bought a SureFire M300, honestly the best mid-distance EDC I own, and my wallet knows it. It has awesome functions like OFF, and F-ing Bright. That’s about it. The tail cap screws off and one of several style remote switches screw on and it works, every time, OFF and F-ing Bright. It's the best tail-stander I have, plus it’s really small and incredibly light, and if someone needed to bust through a door and clear a room, this is the one. And really easy to operate. OFF, and F-ing Bright. (the functions are also reversible, F-ing Bright and OFF)

What I actually needed though was really long throw outdoors light and the ability to adjust the brightness (since I'm not really busting through doors). Enter the Fenix TK26R —that’s a light! Tons of features, charge the battery right in it, and you can use it in self-defense situations like you would a brick. Ha! The quality seems to be between SureFire and Streamlight, the price is just under Streamlight, and it doubles as a club. Yeah. Well, it works as a weapon light and EDC light, so there’s that, despite the weight.

Then Olight came to my attention through Candlepower Forums. People loved them because their wallets loved them. They weren’t as sturdy as Fenix, put out almost as much light as Fenix, cost almost as much as Fenix, had more models than Fenix, and were out of stock on what I wanted. They are Chinese, so I knew some other Chinese company would clone them and be in stock.

When I found Lumentop I was pretty happy because at 1/5 the price of Fenix I can get an Olight EDC clone, and they make some pretty decent “okay” stuff. It works, shines off-color light pretty well, has good to good-plus features, and gets the short-range and mid-range job done. I have an all-copper Tool AAA x1 light that works kind of backwards, a key-chain EDC Pico rechargeable that I use often, and multi-fuel Tool AA 2.0 (AA/1.5V lithium/3.7V lithium) that is pretty impressive. I bought more and gave them as gifts because they’re excellent value and work. They’re a little funky, but they get the job done.

Then-n-n-n-n-n I went looking for a UV light, a 365nm true UV light, not 385-395nm black light. (By now you can tell I’ve got an abnormal appreciation for lights.) Fenix made a great one but discontinued it, and Olight makes a runner-up but it went out of stock in the U.S. in early 2022, so that’s how I wound up here. It turns out Convoy has a short-range 365nm S2+ and filter—yeah, and 365nm pass filter. And the price is reasonable. And there’s an SST40 EDC version that’s insanely bright with great fill, available in different temperatures, modular, affordable, has a U.I.—oh man, I bought one of each and some accessories. Simon, thanks for listening to your customers and building great lights!

Now that I’m here there are some things to address: Your reviews are great! Lots of detail, lots of pictures, and things are understandable, which is the second point: I can understand what you’re saying. You explain the high-level stuff in simple terms and then break it down so new guys understand it—thank you! Nothing against where I came from, and I love high-end lights, but not every light has to be high-end—there’s seriously a lot to be said for “affordable quality.” And yeah, those guys know their stuff, but thanks to you I can understand it. And finally, these lights aren’t consumer junk, you review quality lights that perform—that’s awesome, I’m really thankful.

Hi there WI_Hedgehog, welcome to the forums! I think some people here like high-end lights too but the focus is definitely more around the point of diminishing returns for the most part.

We're very glad to have you here, WI_Hedgehog!

You’ve landed. Welcome to the Illumasphere. BLF is where it’s at for inquiring minds. Strap in and enjoy the ride!


Welcome! No need to warn of the addiction. =)

Once you delve into Convoy, Sofirn, Wurkkos, Acebeam and even “Hank Lights” your wallet will start returning your calls…….

Even though it is “budget” light forum. The quality of the lights make it really the “value” light forum.

Thank you, I just found Malkoff in @TIFisher’s post, I like how they always come on in low mode–that’s a nice UI option. I use firefly mode a lot so unfortunately Malkoff is out (maybe Simon of Convoy could add that?).

Do you have a link to "Hank Lights?" I've only seen them vaguely referenced so far, but it sounds like they're a step beyond "normal," if anything we use is "normal."

Welcome to BLF!

Hank lights are the nickname for Emisar/Noctigon. The owner is Hank Wang. Here is the link to the website: https://intl-outdoor.com/

Thank you! It looks like they build a light to fit your needs--awesome! I'll have to start reading reviews.

Looking at Sofirn also, though I am intrigued by the open source UI.

For low-budget lights, it's tough to beat Convoy, Sofirn, and Wurrkos.

If you want to spend a bit more money, there are more choices, but I prefer the value for money ratio of those three brands most of the time.