Posted by in Gear Categories: Gear tests.

Many torches do the job – shine brightly and last the holiday – but few truly light up my life. For me, the perfect torch must have the following:

  • A high lumen count
  • Replaceable and rechargeable batteries (for budget and environmental purposes)
  • Indicator lights so it doesn’t sommer go flat
  • Dimming options to further save on battery life
  • A means of hanging it in the tent
  • Durable and small enough to fit in my pocket

 

Meet the contenders:

1. LED Lenser F1R Torch

R1880, awesometools.co.za

led-lenser-f1r-rechargeable-torch

Weight? 120g

Lumen count? 1000

Rechargeable? Yes

Indicator lights? No

Hook? Clip

Durability? IPX8

 

2. Black Diamond Ember Power Flashlight

R699, rammountain.co.za

 

Weight? 97g

Lumen count? 150

Rechargeable? Yes

Indicator lights? Yes

Hook? Yes

Durability? Water resistant

This nifty torch also comes with a built-in 2600 mAh power bank and a lock mode that disengages the battery for a longer life.

 

3. Olight R20 Javelot

R1199, olight.co.za

Olight Torch

 

 

Weight? 136g

Lumen count? 900

Rechargeable? Yes

Indicator lights? Yes

Hook? Lanyard

Durability? IPX8

This torch also has a really clever extra – a glow in the dark O-ring and comes with a Samsung charging adaptor.

 

4. Zartek 900

R835, outdoorwarehouse.co.za

Zartek Torch

Weight? 240g

Lumen count? 900

Rechargeable? Yes

Indicator lights? No

Hook? Lanyard

Durability? IPX6

 

5. Jetbeam C8

R1100, jetbeam.co.za

 

Weight? 119g

Lumen count? 1000

Rechargeable? Yes

Indicator lights? No

Hook? Lanyard

Durability? IPX6

 

6. The NiteCore MH10 is the perfect torch

R1365 (plus R65 for delivery nationwide), nitecoresa.co.za

The 1000-lumen NiteCore MH10 torch is the closest I’ve ever got to the perfect torch. It lights up a whopping 100 metres and provides enough periphery light for good visibility. I really liked the variable beam options (from a soft 70-lumen light to the spotlight beam) and despite being so lightweight, it feels hard-wearing and solid, standing up to its water-resistant and drop-proof IPX8 rating. At just 75g it’s great for hiking, but its really useful travel element is the ability to be charged via a car’s USB port, electric mains or computer (it takes four hours to charge fully when completely flat). The price is a bit high, but the torch met all my requirements and has military-grade specs. Now, if only it glowed in the dark…

 

Did you know?

We also learnt a nifty trick that can turn a torch into a lantern using just a simple shopping slip.

getaway-magazine-diy-lantern-1

IP Rating

Waterproof products featuring any electronic component (or that act to protect something electrical) have an ingress protection (IP) rating to indicate water- as well as dust-resistance. A good IP rating is indicated by an ‘X’ or ‘6’ meaning it’s fit for use in dusty conditions and a second numeric rating from 4 to 8. The higher the numbers, the better the protection: IPX4 for splash-proof, IPX7 for immersible and IPX8 for submersible. These ratings are an international laboratory-tested standard.

 

 

This article first appeared in the November issue.

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Our November issue is packed full of great summer holiday ideas. On shelves from 24 October.