You love being outdoors and exploring the wilderness, so naturally you need a powerful and reliable light you can rely on. In our light reviews we cover all types of lights for an outdoor or tactical setting.
Flashlights, headlamps, electronic lanterns, gas lanterns; there are so many options available and the choice can be overwhelming. With technology constantly evolving (light-emitting diode) technology and battery life has greatly improved over the years. We will break things down in the most simple but informative manner possible to help you learn about the best and brightest lights of 2017 and beyond!
The 4 Most Common Types of Outdoor Survival Lighting
Some key factors to consider when choosing a proper light:
- Light Strength: Modern lights are so powerful they can easily double as self-defense items, blinding any would-be attackers. The latest LEDs are constantly improving and every couple of years they get smaller and brighter.
- Battery Life: As technology improves in leaps and bounds lights are benefiting from improved circuitry, and new kinds of batteries. Not only can you use your light for much longer, but the batteries are much more compact as well saving you weight and size.
- Special Features: Some lights have unique features you may want to consider. Do you need a waterproof light? Do you want it to charge through solar energy? Do you want a build in signaling option or a near indestructible design? Do you need a specific beam type (flood, fixed, spot, adjustable), or maybe you want a certain style of uncommon on / off switch.
- Size: Even a small light can pack quite a powerful beam and light radius. If size isn’t an issue, you can get an extremely powerful light that will illuminate a very large area.
- Weight: Lugging around heavy equipment on long journeys can lead to fatigue and speed up environmental exposure. Choosing a powerful flashlight doesn’t mean it has to be heavy, many of the top lights we’ve reviewed are extremely strong, compact and surprisingly lightweight.
- Durability: The tools you rely on in the field can mean the difference between life and death. If you drop your light when you need it most will it shatter and break? Can your new light stand up to harsh environmental conditions and hard impacts?
- Cost: There’s no need to break the bank. For $20 you can get a great flashlight. However, if you want to experience the very best technology on the market, there are some lights that cost over $250 which are so powerful they can illuminate very large areas effortlessly.
5 Important Questions To Ask Yourself:
- Would a flashlight, headlamp or lantern best suit my needs?
- What style of on/off switch do I want most?
- Do I need any special functions or features?
- Will my new light need to handle abuse and be extra durable?
- Is this a tool that feels comfortable in the hand and easy to use?
Performance, Performance, Performance!
To properly judge any kind of portable light, it’s important to understand the basics behind it’s performance. Don’t worry, we will skip out on the technical jargon as much as possible, let’s leave that to each individual light review…
The ANSI FL1 standards introduced in 2009 are a great way to help ensure you’re getting a well manufactured product, but as a consumer it also gives you the power to see which light outshines the competition in a highly competitive market.
- Light Output: When learning about lights you’ll hear a lot about lumens. Lumens are the measure of light intensity coming from the flashlight.
- Beam Distance: The beam distance is measured in meters. An electronic lantern will have a very small beam distance compared to a spotlight which can illuminate over a great distance.
- Battery Run Time: This is a very basic performance metric which is used to understand battery performance. It’s measured in hours.
- Durability Rating: This rating (also known as impact resistance) is measured in meters. The light is dropped from from the rated distance repeatedly onto concrete.
- Water Resistance: Based on the IPX rating system, water resistance is a very important metric to consider, especially for those venturing out into harsh weather conditions.
Browse Our Recent Survival & Camping Light Reviews
Light manufacturers are always trying to add the latest technologies and top of the line features to get you to purchase from them. Having a light you can count on will make your time in the wilderness safer and much more enjoyable. Take your time and spend a few minutes reading over our recent light reviews and learn about the latest and greatest lights on the market today!