Review of "ThruNite TN12"
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The more you see the less you know
How I came to use the torchA recent weekend stay with friends who were enjoying a fishing holiday near where I stay saw us deciding to take a long moonlight walk in the Spanish countryside. My friends husband wanted to go and take a look at the water at night (night-time fishing is not allowed), and she and I wanted to climb a small local mountain-ette, so we set out to combine the two on the Friday evening around 9pm...what exciting lives we do lead!
Being stupid holiday makers were we rather blasé about our plans...I mean what could possibly go wrong when you are on holiday in the summer sun, surely the full moon and the romance of it all would see us through. But their ever practical fishing guide was a bit more sensible and insisted we wear proper cover up footwear, carried at least one walking stick in case of encountering any of the local wildlife, took his mobile phone and most usefully to us, his torch, a ThruNite TN12Did we need all these precautions? oh yes indeedy....thank goodness for sensible people. The Spanish countryside is full of wild, harsh and incredibly scratchy plant life, our planned flip-flops would have been a disaster, and even wearing shorts left us with scratched legs. The walking stick was used to help stop us slipping on the steep declines we encountered rather than fending off random wildlife, and the torch lit our way brilliantly, as well as helping us plan our onward route. And half way up the first hillside we heard mysterious grunting and scratching off to one side which this rather brilliant torch showed up as clearly as day as a small family group of wild boar rooting around for fallen almonds around 100 yds to our left. Not, much to my disappointment, a gruffalo but nearly as exciting! The stupid mobile phone wasn't able to pick them out on a photo, but the torch gave us a great view them and a lasting memory.
Neon heart, day-glow eyes
The TorchWhen I was handed this torch, it looked nothing special and I assumed it was any ordinary type that could be picked up in a discount or DIY store. Trying to avoid making rude comments about the shape and size of the battery operated appliance in my hand, I quickly realised that my levity was uncalled for and I had been handed a tool of considerable quality. Just 5.5" (14cm) long by 0.9" (2.3cm) in diameter it weighs a surprisingly satisfactory 5 1/4 oz (130g).
It just felt straight away like quality and I was intrigued to look a bit more closely. Satin black paint covered the entire, well designed anodised aluminium body of this torch, highlighted only by discrete white lettering telling me who made it and what model I was holding. A lot of thought had been put into the design, from the tiny diamond grip pattern on the main body, to the strong removable pen clip to hold it firmly in a pocket or even on te visor of you cap, and the removable wrist strap. The good sized rubberised and textured on/off button clicked satisfactorily and was recessed into the end of the torch making it both easy to find in a hurry, but difficult to turn on by accident in your pocket. The walls of the recess were reduced in two places allowing room for a bigger thumb.Both ends of the torch unscrewed, cleverly in opposite directions so that a good seal can be achieved, aided by thin rubber washers to make a good, presumably at least splash-proof seal. The battery itself was a surprise being the shape of an AA but considerably larger and thicker. I have never seen a battery of this type before, but apparently it is a 18650 rechargeable and gives between 95 minutes (max setting) to 74 days (firefly setting) of continuous light, depending on which level of brightness you are using the torch, but is not supplied automatically with the torch. Two CR123A batteries could also be used. In both cases the battery has to be removed in order to charge, so if the torch is a vital piece of equipment it makes sense to have two batteries so there is always a back up. I couldn't fathom an obvious way of changing the bulb, but I suppose being an top of the range Cree LED that should never be necessary, although it seems it is possible to chose between cool white (CW) a slightly brighter blueish white, or neutral white (NW) giving more realistic colours upon purchase. I have no idea which version we had.
It can be stood up on its beam end, or if laid down the pen clip will stop it rolling. The only other feature of note is the small silver coloured button towards the front, perfectly placed just under the thumb in the natural holding position of the torch, and pleasant to click repeatedly when I was bored!!The city lit by fireflies
Using the Torch
Once the torch is out of your pocket, pressing the on/off button on the end gently gives you momentary beam of light on the last setting you left it on. Or it can be clicked on properly to provide five different levels of light, each controlled by clicking the side silver button. First what Thrunight like to call "firefly" (a tiny spot of light) followed by four ascending levels of brightness, low, medium, high and max, one click at a time then an extra click back to "firefly" again. This ascending brightness allowed us to enjoy the once-in-lifetime sight of the wild boar family without unduly startling them with an instant excess of light...and boy does this little torch give an excess of light...1100 lumens apparently whatever they are, I just call it blinking bright!We were able to locate their general direction with the noise and the firefly level of brightness shone in their direction showed nothing, although it allowed them to see us. By the low level we could see their shapes at around 100 yds away, and by the time we had clicked up to max the boars were bored with our presence and carried on with their own business although being lit up by near daylight conditions.
These levels we also found handy during the rest of our walk. Firefly was just about enough for checking the little map we had taken with us, even though none of us understood it. Low was good for highlighting our own feet and the ground just in front of them without giving us night-blindness as we looked around us. And high and max level were used to plan the route ahead of us or look around us at the landscape. Whoever had charge kept the wrist band on around their arm, so there were no worries about losing someone else's property, and all in all it was the most useful thing we took with us on our nocturnal adventure.The torch turned on at whatever level we had previously turned it off at, not matter how many times I annoyingly clicked the button when I had charge of it. And I was super excited to discover a strobe light effect, achieved by pressing and holding the silver button at any level it happened to be on....I hope I didn't give any badgers or pixies an epileptic fit in my childish enthusiasm.
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What ThruNite say
The ThruNite TN12 XP-L is the improved version of The TN12 2014. It features improved side switch and circuit design, and can give out up to 1100 lumen with one 18650 battery. A body specifically designed for better single hand operation and a new emitter (XP-L V6) to supply more beam with throw and flood.
ThruNite is a specialist company established in 2009 by Davis Chen, who identified a need for well built well designed, but affordable flash light products for people who work in the hours of darkness. Now based in Schenzen, China they distribute all over the world, mainly via close links with Amazon and pride themselves on excellent customer service and back up.
I knew much more then than I do now
SpecsThruNite TN12 2016 1100 Lumen EDC LED Flashlight (TN12 2016 XP-L NW)
- Cree XP-L V6 LED
- Uses one 18650 rechargeable battery (No Included).
- Max output:1100 lumens with XP-L V6
- Working voltage: 2.7V-9V
- 143mm (Length)*25.4mm (Diameter)
- 86g weight (without batteries)
- Reverse polarity protection design to protect from improper battery installation
- Versatile mode:Turbo (1100lm / 95min), Strobe (1100lm / 3.8hours), High (435lm / 4.2hours), Medium (175lm / 11.8 hours), Low (18lm / 5.5 days), Firefly (0.4lm / 74 days)
- Aircraft-grade aluminium body
- Premium Type III hard-anodized anti-abrasive finish
- Toughened ultra-clear glass lens with anti-reflective coating
- Smooth reflector gives perfect beam and throw.
They're advertising in the skies
Price and AvailabilityThis torch is not cheap, but then it is designed for the military, police, emergency services, security etc. using aircraft grade aluminium and anti-shock circuitry. Currently available form Amazon at £41.95 (with batteries available from around £11 for two including a charger) or from ThruNite directly at $65.95 (around £52) including battery and charger. Both offer free shipping although import tax may be due in the country of arrival if ordering direct from China.
I knew much more then than I do now
My opinionI was thoroughly impressed by this torch. Small and mighty is how I would describe it and think it would be ideal for anyone working at night or with a night time hobby. Although I was very grateful for the use of this torch, it is not designed for the occasional casual user so I myself would not buy it unless I was planning a lot more nocturnal walks....then it would be top of my list.
During my research, I did notice one forum with people complaining that there is no difference between high and max brightness, but this seems to be down to the quality of battery in use and I certainly noticed a difference in the settings with the battery that was installed in ours. I have decided to knock off one star as if the quality of battery affects it's performance then it should always be supplied with at least one.
Product Information : ThruNite TN12
Manufacturer's product description
Listed on Ciao since: 06/02/2017