I've been a flashaholic for years and I still don't get the obsession with ultra low modes.

I’ve never understood why people want a .03 lumen mode on their full sized flashlight or worse yet, their headlamp. If I need less light which almost is never the case, I just use my $0.99 keychain light. For all other uses, I want actual light I can use.

I usually won’t even buy a light that has a moonlight mode unless it’s hidden and I never have to access it if I don’t want to. All these people insisting every light has a sub lumen mode are very vocal but ruining the vast majority of lights for normal people.

I have NEVER met anyone in real life that wants or needs more than 3 modes or has any desire for a sub lumen mode. The majority of people who actually use their lights and don’t just play with them actually want to be able to illuminate things in the dark. It’s not that complicated. They want to light up the night so they buy a light. They don’t want to squint and scratch around with a light that barely puts out any light.

I’m a rare flashaholic who is mostly a user and less of a hobbiest. I have come around on a few topics that I used to not worry too much about. For example, I was never a tint snob and thought people were just being picky. Now I find that given the choice, I will go for a warmer tint everytime. This sub lumen thing just escapes me.

For me, sub lumen is mostly about having the opportunity to look at and appreciate the emitter itself while it is running. I just find these things amazing to look at.

I completely agree, that when I need to use a light daily and can’t employ a hidden Moon mode then I skip it in favour of a simple 2 or 3 mode setup. It’s just annoying to cycle through and often confuses me about whether the light is actually on or not. It’s more of a nuisance there.

I can however appreciate why a really low output mode can be handy, for example to maintain nightvision or not disturb others in the dark. However I’ve very very rarely needed to use a moon mode in that way myself.

Nice rant. I can see where you are coming from.

I personally don’t like a bunch of modes either, but I do like a good moon mode for times when I’m navigating the bedroom after my wife is asleep, or just a bathroom trip when I don’t want my eyes to readjust. I personally don’t go as low as other people though, I still need to see the floor in front of me. My small lights always get Moon, L, M, H.

My new obsession is red for the moon mode. It’s functionally about the same as a normal moon, but I think it looks cooler (as do most non-flashaholics).

On any larger light that will only be used outside (most throwers) I only give them 3 modes. L, M, H.


Firefly or moonlight modes are great when it’s pitch black and you only need 0.1 lumens to go across a room without bumping into something or stubbing your toe. Anything brighter (>10 lumens) will be painfully bright when your eyes are adjusted to the darkness and may annoy others if anyone else is near. Your eyes will have to readjust to the darkness once you turn it off.

A $0.99 keychain light may even be too bright, and I don’t know of any dedicated firefly lights aside from survival GITD sticks that only provides sub-lumen brightness. I find moonlight mode very useful, and I’m surprised you haven’t found it that useful.

I do agree with you that having too many modes gets cumbersome to loop over especially when the modes aren’t hidden.

You are obviously irritated by moonlight and it shows in your words so don’t expect all happy posts as responses… ‘Loving’ flashlights for some involves a bit of obsession and fixation on a single or many details of a light. “I LOVE THROW!” I LOVE SUPER BRIGHT!” I LOVE LONG RUNTIMES! Personally, I have a moderate fixation with owning an ‘everything light’ just in case there is a disaster, I can potentially grab any one light and have low that can last days if a hurricane hits or high that can blind an intruder if necessary…

From a different point of view, in complete dark, a little light goes a long way. My eyes are not all that great and in my dark room (with ambient light), 3 lumens is bright. In a blackout or in a cave or when reading a map on a camping trip or during a night race, low lumens is best. Some have eyes a lot better than mine so I can’t wonder WTF when some claim that 0.03 lumens is good enough for them.

From a third point of view: to each his own. I hate zoomies but there are a lot of folks here that love them and will spend more on one light than I make in a week. It is their choice and if it makes them happy, good for them :slight_smile:

The ONLY time I ever use ML is early in the morning when my eyes are not adjusted. I guess you can say I use my S20 on ML, tail standing, early in the morning instead of the Bathroom light! I know,TMI!

That is about it for me unless I was in some survival mode[stuck in a cave!!!] and wanted to conserve my battery!

I am ALL about high output and high powered lights.MAX most of the time w/ High and Medium a few minutes to cool down or conserve batteries.I have a Dozen modded throwers which I take w/ me nightly on my trail walks w/ my Husky, Capo.,that will be ~ 50 minutes from now!

I tested one of them the other night on a Golf Course[top of hill] down the valley to a cell tower. TK61vn V4 ~ 740Kcd! It shed light on the tower from 1 mile & 27yards/1787yards/1634meters! :wink: I do not think ML could do that! The COPS even enjoyed my test!


If your interested in the exciting event,see link below: POST #581


I just used zebralight low #2 all night as a night light so my son can find his way in the dark to the restroom at grandma’s house without waking everyone up by turning on the lights. Moonlight Definitely has its uses.

^ Another good use,an all nighter! :wink:

I have the SC62 and I like looking at the LED[Another member mentioned this] when it is also on L2,0.06Lumens!

Moonlight moon is invaluable while hunting/camping. I don’t carry a flashlight with a red filter so moonlight mode is great in the tent, and early mornings when im hiking to a tank to sit without destroying my night vision.

I forgot something,imperative to mention b/4 my trail hike!

I have plenty of lights, I have designated the S10 and TN12 to be on LOW. TN12 under a lamp and the S10 under a nice BLUE VASE.

If I do not use my ALL lights I feel guilty!

I also like ML and since I mostly build my own (and generally with Q-lite drivers) I set them up that way. When it’s pitch dark and my pupils are wide open, sub-lumen illumination is plenty for most purposes. Anything more is annoying and completely destroys my night vision. The .5 lumens ML from an S20 is downright harsh at 0300 when I’m awakened from a deep sleep.
Yes, it’s good to have the big output available but its been my habit to use the minimum required, and since I’m often out in the bush for days on end, to stretch battery life as much as possible.
Ain’t it great that we have so much to chose from that we can all have what we prefer? :slight_smile:

Well the same could be said for strobe and sos modes, but I doubt that people requested those. The moon mode is more useful than strobe and sos in my humble opinion. I also use it for night time navigation at home but I also use full power or medium when outside to light up where I’m going and to see stuff.

I think there are still plenty of options for you, for example single mode or an electronic switch with memory.
Having to cycle through strobe and sos modes in the main interface would be a pita very quickly but I don’t think one extra mode is that big of an issue personally

And that is the beauty of this forum; we can pool our knowledge, learn, and each take away exactly what we want.

I love it when a plan comes together!

Let me be perfectly clear, I don’t consider myself normal in my appreciation of flashlights but even though I don’t often use a moon mode I can stretch my imagination far enough to allow that others might use them more and would not consider that an indication of either normal or abnormal behavior. On a forum such as this you will commonly find those who want a low moon mode and those who don’t. Some want always start on high, some always on low. Tint snobs and run time vs start up lumens. Normal is not a really appropriate way to characterize things here. People who ride road bikes might want unique and specific blink modes while mtbr’s might not want any at all. I’d be willing to bet dollars to doughnuts that even among non flashaholics there are those who would like a low mode if they had one. My obsession is not with any particular mode but with choice. To me that’s as normal as can be.

I have a few lights that have a super low. I use one of them just about every day. Or should I say at night I use my Moon Mode.

So one may ax how do I use said feature? Following are a few, but not limited to examples:

Checkin on the 4 month old in the crib at night.
Navigating my crib at night. So as not to disturb the sleeping wife.
Checkin on dog in the kennel and letting her out every night and morning.
Peaking in on 2 week old kittens. They are so cute! :slight_smile: lol
Navigating my disaster of a man cave.
Y’all still reading this junk?
Checkin baby diaper for Poop during Fast and Furious 7. She let out a monster fart. Thought we had a emergency diaper change, but nope, just air.

So you see, some very important things for me to do that don’t require 10,000 Chinese lumen.
At the end of the day, I probably really only need a 200 lumen high. At the end of the day, get it? 8)


Low-low mode is to help me get myself to places where I can use my eyes for all they’re worth.

If you ever owned a 3-mode light, with low, medium and high, do you find yourself switching modes to a lower mode because you felt high was a little bright?

The environment must be dark enough to appreciate sub-lumens. You’d be in for a darkness- adjusted eyes by how much you can see with so little light.

Also, sub-lumens, or low lumens (about 3?) are great for the long runtime especially. I have read threads where people are trapped in blackouts, or disasters, and the low mode works perfectly in giving just enough light, and yet conserving battery.

I can see where a ML mode would be useful in theory but it just doesn’t happen enough in real life for me to warrent having it on any of my lights.

I believe strobe modes to so worthless as not to even bother talking about them.

The only times I’ve ever wanted a low mode was map reading on a camping trip at night and finding my way around a house in the middle of the night while others were sleeping. In both cases, I ended up just putting my hand over the lens and blocking 99% of the light for the few mins I needed the low.

It would be great if you could have every mode and feature you would ever desire in one light but sometimes more is actually less. If you have too many modes, too many features, the light becomes a hassle to use and overly complicated.

Now that we’ve got a newborn in the house, the “moonlight” mode (some don’t consider 1 lumen to be moonlight) on my EA41 has become invaluable. Like a few others have mentioned, it’s perfect for navigating the room while the wife is asleep to check on the baby. I used to use my Foursevens Mini MA on low, but even those 3 lumens is too bright to shine up at the ceiling. For me, I have really come to appreciate it. It’s a specialized use but that’s why it’s a specialized mode.

Like Speedsix, I dont have a lot of use for sub lumen “moonlight” or blinkies usually.

I am currently in love with Guppydrv firmware, which gives me the option of picking from 20+ mode groups that have what I need, and set turbo timer @ whatever I want.

Plus it uses OFF time memory. :heart_eyes:

In my opinion this is close to perfect UI, since people like the OP, and myself can choose 15/100, or 2/25/100, and others can get their moonlight on, or blinkies if they choose.