Having bought a nice 90+ lumen tactical flashlight at the local Big 5 Sporting Goods store, I recently came across another Smith and Wesson flashlight while at the same store. The sale price was just $20 so I opted to give it a try. Except for the one on my key chain, I didn't have any battery operated LED flashlights and was interested in seeing how well they performed. For $20, this one seemed like a bargain if the quality was comparable to my S&W tactical light.
I was not disappointed in the quality of this flashlight. Aluminum construction with a sealed o-ring end cap makes for a reliable and lightweight unit. The light comes with a black nylon holster. It is a bit larger in diameter than my tactical light and this results from the 12 LEDs mounted in the head as well as the battery pack configuration.
The power source for the flashlight is comprised of 3 "AAA" cells. The batteries are contained in a "3 pack" holder that makes for a larger body diameter profile but keeps the flashlight's length reduced. With fresh batteries, the white LEDs (accounting for 8 of the 12 LEDs) should illuminate things for upwards of 40 hours. I've not conducted a run down test and don't intend to. For the price of 3 "AAA" cells, I'll keep a spare set on hand just in case I don't get my full 40 hours from the set that came with the light.
The flashlight as two push button power switches. The switch mounted on the head controls the 8 white LEDs. The switch mounted on the body controls power for illuminating the 2 red LEDs or the 2 blue LEDs. (note that you can not have both the red and blue LEDs on at the same time)
The business end of the light with the red LEDs powered on. Sorry for the blurry photo....my Canon didn't want to focus on the LEDs.
Overall, I am pleased with the Galaxy 12 LED flashlight. I would rather have traded the blue LEDs for two more white LEDs as I don't see that much use for them. The red LEDs will help keep your night vision if you need to take advantage of that feature.
The flashlight provided a nice well shaped white beam and easily illuminated the entire hallway and master bedroom as I discovered during last nights informal testing. It is not the intense light I get form my tactical light, but I wasn't expecting that kind of performance. The 20x increase in battery life is an OK trade off in my opinion.
I do wish the light used the same CR123 lithium batteries as my other S&W flashlight. This light will most likely be tossed into my shooting bag and having just one type of battery would simplify things.
I am glad to see the price of battery powered LED flashlights coming down a bit. Or maybe the prices are staying the same and the quality/features are increasing. Either way, it is good for you and me.
I don't think you will be disappointed with this flashlight. For the $20 I spent, I know I am not.
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