The older flashlights that you're still happy with

Every year, so many new LED flashlight models come out… it’s mind boggling. Better build quality, better feature assortment, brighter emitters… and no wonder why some folks around here have dozens upon dozens of lights (hard to resist that new and improved next model!).

But I have to say, LED flashlights have come such a long way that releases over the past couple of years are still extremely useful. More lumens, more throw, less heat… how far does one need to really go? Looks to me like as long as you’ve got decent lumens, it’s more about the UI and build quality.

So what light do you have that you’re still actively using today, despite it being passed by on emitter power and efficiency? That light where you say build quality is excellent and the UI simply works so well.

I’m still putting my NovaTac 120P to use. The emitter is sadly inferior to what’s out today, but the UI is still so much fun. Hardly any lights out there today with that capability. And I like having trits in the bezel.

The Olight S15 is a super light. I make use of every mode. Magnetic tail stand is useful (I keep one stuck to the refrigerator). Plus, being AA the cell is so damned easy to replace. Don’t have a cell charged? Slap in a regular AA from hundreds of different sources and you’re good to go.

The Zebralight SC52w looks and feels great. Sometimes the UI is a little awkward (having to press-hold in order to avoid brightest setting), but without it being programmable it’s very useful. Best firefly mode around.

I’m very much a multi-mode light guy… so the Jetbeam RRT-01 is quite a departure. But that variable control ring works extremely well. And the tube lockout is easy to guard against accidental on. I just wish the secret mode wasn’t a useless SOS, but instead a strobe.

There are so many new lights out that are tempting… but I’m hanging onto these, until emitters are just so much more efficient it makes sense to modify them. :slight_smile:

What older lights are you hanging onto?

+1 on the ZL SC52.

I carry one of those Tank 007 AAA lights on me every day for the last several years, and it’s been on every overseas trip in that same time.

lights that I still use are, nitecord10. Great ,flexible UI.
And custom Saberwolf cr123quad die.
It’s been putting out approx 450 lumens for an older
Light many new lights are just now matching its output.
Also Electro lumens EDC a 18650 one mode
At 1000 lumens from way back.

Still using my old, trusty L0D (revitalized by switching to 10440):

Does the V11R count as an older flashlight?

I’m still quite pleased with my ZL SC600 mk1 circa 2011.
The max 750 lumens from a small 18650 can still keep up with the latest offerings

I still use my beater L1D and L2D Q5 Premium. They just keep working, they should for what they cost the year that they were introduced. I think they hit somewhere around '07!

Does a converted 2D MagLite count? I have a few of those and one 20 something yr old incan. The Solarforce S2200. Solarforce L2X. Solarforce L2P with MattAus silver plated cu pill and Hyperion firmware running the triple Nichia 219 Hi CRI emitters, Solarforce Skyline I with an MT-G2 in it. :wink: , Fenix SSLD1, 23 year old Xenon bulbed 2*C Alkaline Dive Light from Pelican (on/off twisty), also have a 2 AAA Pelican twisty with an attachable 90º elbow for a bore light that’s 23 years old as well, MagLite 2AA, both the old incan and an Old Lumens LED variation.

6D MagBaseballBat. Great to keep in the car for “emergencies”. I keep the cells separate so they don’t alkaleak.

SK98 Clone (first dual PWM 'moonlight' driver; dedomed XM-L on Noctigon), UF-T20 (dedomed XP-G2 on Noctigon, 4.4A, NLITE), S2 (first 17mm FET driver, 80+ CRI XM-L2 on Noctigon). Those are all 2+ years old now, but are still some of the main ones I reach for. I have upgraded them a bit from stock, but they definitely aren't "current" in flashlight terms. None of them are fancy or expensive lights, but I like them all.

I totally agree! One of the first (dozen or so) lights I bought was the ITP SA2 (R5 emitter). It’s been through some rough handling, and looks pretty beat-up now… but has never let me down. Forward clicky with sideswitch for mode changes. An ol’ faithful, this one…

I still use my iTP SC1 Eluma!

Still a few cheap 6V incan lights around here which see occasional use. A few HF freebies are still around too. I just kind of left them where they were stationed when I switched to LEDs and they’ll see occasional use from convenience and habit till my battery stash runs out for them. Also a couple Mini-Mags doing similar duty. All will get replaced as my LED collection builds to adequate numbers.


still use my Romisen RC-A3, its about 8 years old, has only one mode and built like a tank.
I find the ~50 lumens, one mode combination very useful for close up work.

I have that too, and it still works just fine :slight_smile:

I always use my newest greatest EDC, usually a modded cheapy with newest led and a lot of lumens, but I also still every now and then grab this AA twisty copper Maratac that I modded two years ago with an Oslon square 3500K 80CRI. I use a 14500 in it, the driver is stock two mode. The Square has seen two new generations since (way lower Vf, much better output), but the light with this old gen. led is still doing its job more than fine.

Fenix P1D and L2T. I have just been replacing the leds with better leds as technology progresses, they went from Luxeon to Seoul and now to Cree leds, useful little lights that resist getting old. :wink:

Original Sky Ray STL V2 thrower with XM-L T6, running 18500 Efest batts. Still one of the greatest domed throwers around.

IO 3amp XM-L U2 drop-in on copper inside a Solarforce L2X host. 820 otf lumens.

Ultrafire MC-E zoomie at 439 lumens (bike light).

Sipik SK68. Still rides on my keychain.

Addendum: What shocks me is how inferior so many new lights are and yet people like them, like these inexcusably unregulated new power toys, some of them without mode memory or "long memory" and everybody seems ok with it. There are so many more "next mode memory" and under-driven torches that, despite having new emitters, are essentially crap. I love many of my older lights, which offered a better all-round value. I've gotten away from budget lights due to the lack of sustained value for this very reason. Sometimes older is better.

Three Arc LSs (two modded with red and amber emitters) and a handful of Arc AAAs, two different UV emitters, and blue and aqua and red-orange and ‘snow white’