What light to get?

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Re: What light to get?

Postby tncaver » Jul 7, 2011 2:41 pm

rlboyce wrote:160 lumen? I thought they were 200 now?


They are 200 lumen now. My 130 lumen is an older model. I'm really hoping they will send me a new model back instead of trying to fix the old one.
The old one has several problems and the newer lights might be sealed better.
Last edited by tncaver on Jul 7, 2011 4:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: What light to get?

Postby LukeM » Jul 7, 2011 3:37 pm

Hmm, I wonder if as many Apex's would be 'broken' all the time if PrinctonTec stopped releasing updated models? :laughing:
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Re: What light to get?

Postby tncaver » Jul 7, 2011 4:57 pm

LukeM wrote:Hmm, I wonder if as many Apex's would be 'broken' all the time if PrinctonTec stopped releasing updated models? :laughing:


I think they just need to improve their design flaws that allow water to get in. If they solved the leakage problems their lights would be extremely good.
Currently they are just really good in dry environments.
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Re: What light to get?

Postby LukeM » Jul 7, 2011 10:13 pm

tncaver wrote:
LukeM wrote:Hmm, I wonder if as many Apex's would be 'broken' all the time if PrinctonTec stopped releasing updated models? :laughing:


I think they just need to improve their design flaws that allow water to get in. If they solved the leakage problems their lights would be extremely good.
Currently they are just really good in dry environments.


Oh, I totally agree TN. I was just having a little fun with the idea.
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Re: What light to get?

Postby Chads93GT » Jul 8, 2011 6:49 am

tncaver wrote:
LukeM wrote:Hmm, I wonder if as many Apex's would be 'broken' all the time if PrinctonTec stopped releasing updated models? :laughing:


I think they just need to improve their design flaws that allow water to get in. If they solved the leakage problems their lights would be extremely good.
Currently they are just really good in dry environments.



Really good other than the fact that the light is a battery hog compared to the fenix hp10/20. I love the apex, I just hate how inefficient of a light it is.
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Re: What light to get?

Postby rlboyce » Jul 8, 2011 11:15 am

To those who are more knowledgeable about electronics than I, what can be attributed to the difference in runtimes between the Apex and HP10? They both use the same amount and type of batteries, right?

Is the driver of the HP10 that much more efficient? Is it a more efficient LED?
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Re: What light to get?

Postby Chads93GT » Jul 8, 2011 11:30 am

If i put my fenix hp10 and my apex 130 lumen side by side, put them both on high, the fenix will run for 8 hours and the apex will run for 2 to 2.5 hours before going dim. Both would be on a spot light mode, and both putting out the same lumens. The electronics in the apex obviously sucks.
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Re: What light to get?

Postby Jon » Jul 8, 2011 11:46 am

Everybody calls the Apex a battery hog. I don't think so. You get what you pay for, and here we are talking light. If you put a Fenix against an Apex you will get better throw but not much usable spill at any distance. The Apex however fills in a room allowing you to see more better. The Fenix requires you to keep moving your head to get the little bright spot to where you want it. Now if you really want to fill in a room use a Sten with frosted optics, sure that Fenix pencil beam throws farther but not a lot. Now figure a route, the best route, out to that dot...

The only time I've seen problems with Apex's eating batteries is when someone just leaves the throw light on high. Start with fresh batteries, conserve power and I don't see a problem with the apex other than waterproofness, which has been discussed and solved elsewhere. Personally I keep my light to a minimum and only crank it when I need it, kind of concentrate on what you're doing, moving or looking. Apex is far more versatile and if you TRY and make the Fenix as versatile, you'd be complaining about having to carry a Mini Tag pack just for replacement diffusers. Now rather than running out and buying every latest little upgraded non rebuildable light, if you save, you might just get a Sten, which is on sale at one of the major suppliers for $330 ish for the whole setup. Now you can recharge your battery, use backup 9 volt or AA's, you can change the optics and if you like, with clear optics can blow away the Fenix throw and the Apex spill at the same time. Yes the Apex warranty is for life (not breakage) the Fenix one year. Bust one or two of the cheaper lights and well you do the math. When you think about it the Sten comes with years worth of batteries and a charger for it, so consider that into the Apex or Fenix savings. Now break a lense on those others....no light, on the Sten it's a $10 set of screws, O ring and replacement lense. Yes the up front cost is a bit but it may well be the last cave light you'll every need to buy

Oh for run times for the Sten with the smaller battery (double the times for the optional larger one)

Low 10 days
Medium 36 hours
High 8 hours
Turbo 2-4 hours depending on thermal limiting
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Re: What light to get?

Postby rlboyce » Jul 8, 2011 12:11 pm

Light conservation aside (which you can also do just as easily with the HP10), the fact remains that the runtimes are significantly greater with the HP10 with the same batteries. It's not quite fair to compare the Sten with the other two... those runtimes are based off of much higher capacities.

"Not breakage" with the Apex? I've heard of people getting replacements after the hinge broke. I've heard of those things dying after all sorts of abuse, and being replaced. As for the HP10, that's a pretty tough little light from what I hear, and there are other, more reliable ways to get diffused light from it without having to use the original diffuser. I understand your economical perspective, I just don't know if I agree with it. The Sten is an awesome light, but right now I don't see the justification in spending $330 for one (the weaker model, BTW).
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Re: What light to get?

Postby Cody JW » Jul 8, 2011 3:30 pm

I had both the 130 Lumen Apex and The Fennix HP-10. I sold the Fennix and kept the HP-10. I have several friends that have Stens , nice lights and I would love to have one, no more than I cave I cannot justify the cost. I have seen one guys sten had to have a bulb replaced after less than one year, another guy had to have his charger replaced after a short time. The same guy with the bulb issue just had to buy some expensive spray stuff because he was having corrosion problems with the connections on his sten. This guy has hobbies other than caving so it does not get used all the time. They are not full proof so do not think that if you spend 375 that it will be bombproof. All I know is I have had the same Duo for over 16 years and never had a flicker, just updated bulbs. I am sure others will have conflicting opinions but that is just my experience and observations. New Duo bulbs have both spot and throw, at the same time and go to over 300 Lumen with eneloops.
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Re: What light to get?

Postby Cody JW » Jul 8, 2011 3:34 pm

I sold the Apex not the Fennix.
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Re: What light to get?

Postby rlboyce » Jul 8, 2011 4:11 pm

Yeah, the CustomDUO modules really improve the Duo's performance. Without an upgrade, it's still a very nice light with its waterproof shell and 14 LED close-range lighting. The halogen spot kind of leaves something to be desired though, and they cost nearly three times as much as an HP10 (not including the cost for those upgrades). There are always tradeoffs with any light, I guess.
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Re: What light to get?

Postby Cody JW » Jul 8, 2011 5:33 pm

rlboyce wrote:Yeah, the CustomDUO modules really improve the Duo's performance. Without an upgrade, it's still a very nice light with its waterproof shell and 14 LED close-range lighting. The halogen spot kind of leaves something to be desired though, and they cost nearly three times as much as an HP10 (not including the cost for those upgrades). There are always tradeoffs with any light, I guess.
I have said before that the Duo only really makes sense if you already own one. You can spend around 80 bucks and get 300 lumens and have an efficient bulb, seems at least as efficient as the HP-10. There were very popular before The Apex came out then every body put them on the shelf in favor of newer brighter lights, problem was that the newer lights were brighter, but not more cave worthy.If you do not have a Duo save extra bucks and get a sten or similar. BUT - if you already have one you can get a nice current generation light for 80 bucks, in my opinion better than a HP-10 because of the spot and throw and certainly more cave worth than an Apex. The simple reason is The Duo was made for caving from the drawing board up, unlike many of todays popular lights.
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Re: What light to get?

Postby Jon » Jul 10, 2011 3:49 pm

Still on the battery hog idea, Yes the fenix may go longer on a set of batteries but you for the most part (I at least am) are mostly on the 4 spill lights on the Apex and get more than what I think is acceptable run time. What I'm saying is you have more lighted area, more lights on and as such are going to use more battery. Since most of us are or should be using rechargables, I really don't get the whole run time war. Who caves so hard that they run down a set of batteries before they have to pee, drink, eat or rest? Might happen if you run with light on full tilt all the time and forgot to charge the batteries before the trip. But if you run full light all the time you probably sleep with the lights on at home also :big grin: :big grin: :big grin:

Not sure if mentioning a specific name and price is legit here so I just said one of the major online stores but as I recall it was a sale on Sten Prem 7
not the older low power...guess I could check but I can't afford a second one although it would be cool to have one with frosted optics and the other with all clear optics......maybe I'll go down the street and buy a lottery ticket....
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Re: What light to get?

Postby Jon » Jul 10, 2011 4:03 pm

Yep just checked, the Prem 7 is on sale for $332.75, the lower powered but later upgradeable Sten is $271
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