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Reviews > Lighting > Flashlights - LED > Energizer 2 in 1 Flashlight > Test Report by Bob Dorenfeld



ENERGIZER LED 2 IN 1 LIGHT
Test Series By Bob Dorenfeld
Initial Review    August 20, 2013
 
Long Term Report    February 4, 2014
Tester Bio
Name: Bob Dorenfeld

I'm an active hiker, snowshoer, skier, backpacker, amateur geographer and naturalist. Home base is the Southern Colorado Rockies, where I usually journey from 7000 ft (2100 m) to above treeline, with occasional desert trips to lower altitudes. Six to 12 miles (10 to 20 km) hiking in a day is my norm, including elevation change of as much as 4000 ft (1200 m) in a day. Most of my backpack trips are two or three nights, sometimes longer. Often I hike off-trail on challenging talus, snowfields, or willow brakes, with occasional bouldering.

Email: geartest(at)sageandspruce(dot)net
Age: 55
Location: Salida, Colorado, USA
Gender: M
Height: 5' 6" (1.68 m)
Weight: 135 lb (61 kg)

Product Overview

Manufacturer:    Energizer
Year of Manufacture:    2013
Manufacturer's Website:   www.energizer.com
MSRP:  US$19.99
Listed Weight:  None
Measured Weight:  7 oz (200 g) (with batteries installed)
Measured Size:  1.25 in (3 cm) wide x 2 in (4.5 cm)  deep x 7.5 in (19 cm) long

Brightness:  75 lumens (directional), 100 lumens (area)
Maximum run time at lowest setting (mfgr specs):  10 hours (directional), 100 hours (area)

Non-slip hand grip   
Water-resistant   
Batteries:  Four AA (included) 
Lighting Type:  spot light and area light, with dimming capability

Color:  black case with orange control button and band around edge


 Energizer LED 2 In 1 Package
Energizer LED 2 In 1 Package
The Energizer LED 2 in 1 Light combines a flashlight and lantern in one hand-held device. Patterned translucent plastic forms the lens for the front directional lamp, and for the area lamp along most of the side. The light feels solid and fits well in either hand, and its exterior is constructed entirely of seemingly durable plastic. Normally I try a new product without reading the instructions (unless a safety hazard might be involved) to see how well-designed it is; in this case, I learned the operation of the on/off button and associated functions within a short time, enabling both the directional and area light plus dimming and brightening. At first use the light seems substantial and well-made, and the four included AA batteries appear fully charged. The light was received in fine condition, and as described on the packaging.


- Initial Review -

First Impressions     

The 2 in 1 Light rests comfortably in either hand, but since I'm right handed that's the one I'll use. I like the non-skid orange plastic that keeps the light from slipping out of my hand. The flashlight is about the weight I'd expect for its size and four AA battery capacity. Its operation button is easily pressed by my thumb and the action is positive and responsive. Pressing once activates the directional light at the front, and pressing again within about three seconds switches to the area light at the left side (when holding in the right hand). Pressing the button a second time after three seconds turns the light off, in either directional or area mode. Also when on in either mode, pressing and holding the button causes the light to slowly dim to its lowest setting over about seven seconds, when it'll blink to let me know it's reached lowest brightness. Similarly, pressing and holding the button again will raise the lamp's brightness over seven seconds and a blink again alerts me to its brightest setting. To turn off the flashlight I just press the button once (in either lamp mode).

That's a long description of a fairly simple sequence of operations, but nonetheless I found the operation easy to remember without having to think about it much.

The 2 in 1 Light's front package picture shows the light standing on its front end to provide hands-free area lighting, but in that position I found it to be rather unstable and easily knocked over. The same goes for resting the light on its bottom side - didn't take much to tip it over.

Reading the Instructions   

instructionsMy first reaction to the instructions: they're printed way too small! I estimate a 5 point font for the body of the instructions, somewhat bigger for the headlines: but a larger page would easily have accommodated 8 point type for the body. Font size aside, I found the instructions clear and easy to understand. They are printed in French and Spanish as well as English. If I hadn't tried the light out first before reading the instructions, I would have been able to follow them easily. In addition to operation, the instructions include information on replacing batteries, disabling the Try Me mode (more on this below), Lifetime Guarantee, and battery warning. I found one discrepancy between the specification sheet that came with my light and the packaging. The former claims a light output of "Up to 150 Lumens" for the area light, while the package says "100 Lumens"; I don't know if I'll be able to measure the flashlight's output this accurately.

I found the Try Me feature mystifying: what was that for? But following the instructions, I disabled it by removing and reinserting the batteries, and didn't notice any difference in operation. Perhaps Try Me is for preserving battery life while packaged on the store shelf, since customers are encouraged to operate it before purchasing; a quick look at Energizer's web site for this product didn't clear up the mystery.

I was able to easily remove the battery cover by twisting a small button with a coin or key and lifting it off, and the batteries came out and went back in without a problem, using the usual spring-tension arrangement. Reattaching the cover was just as easy.

Initial testing shows a very bright light both indoors (day or night) and outside (night): the directional is fairly wide but definitely forward, and the area lighting is broad and illuminates a wide space. A hanging loop at the back end of the flashlight is large enough for cord or small rope, but perhaps not for larger clips.

This concludes my Initial Report. The Field Report will be amended to this report in approximately two months from the date of this report. Please check back then for further information.

- Long Term Report  [February 4, 2014] -

I have now used the Energizer 2 In 1 Light for four months - on one backpacking trip, three car-camping trips, two walks at night, and around the house for miscellaneous tasks.

Here's how it has performed for me in each type of situation:

Backpacking
standingThe 2 In 1 light is not the usual kind of lamp I take backpacking - at 7 oz (200 g) it's a bit heavy for me, and I prefer the headlamp style.  However, I wanted to test its usefulness and took it along on a three-day trip.  First, I found the light to be very bright at its highest setting (default when turned on), so I almost always immediately turned it down to about 50% brightness.  As when I was trying it out, operating the light was intuitive and I didn't have to think about it
much between uses, with one exception:  to turn down the brightness, I needed to wait a couple of seconds after turning it on and then repressing the button, else holding down the button had no effect.  I used the area lamp feature more often than the directional.  It was great at lighting my entire (small) campsite and tent near the fire ring, including a log I sat on to read.  Because the lamp case is not very stable I had some trouble getting it to lay on a log to point in the direction I wanted, but finally it stayed propped up between a couple of rocks.

Next I tested its usefulness inside my small dome tent by attaching a short cord at each end of the light, then hanging it by the tent's top
interior loops to provide an area light for inside.  The hanging loop at one end of the light was useful, and at the front of the light I just wrapped a cord several times to hold tight so that I was able to hang the lamp horizontally.  It was like having a flood lamp inside the tent!  Turning down the brightness helped make the atmosphere friendlier, and it was easy to see all of the interior.  Unfortunately, hanging this light (or any lamp, for that matter) from the top of the tent usually doesn't provide enough light to read by when reclining with my head at one end or the other of tent.  Obviously this is not the fault of the 2 In 1 Light, but for reading inside the tent I found a headlamp to be more useful.

Car-camping
I found the Energizer 2 In 1 more useful for car-camping since weight was not a concern, nor was finding a space for it in a backpack.  The extra light not needed while backpacking was appreciated in the larger space around a car and the extra gear I inevitably end up spreading out, such as a hammock, coolers, chairs, and for a picnic table if present.
I liked being able to easily switch from area light at the table or chair to directional when walking through the woods at night.  One drawback, as noted the Trying It Out section (above), is that the lamp case is not very stable when stood on the directional-lamp end.  I think that's a design flaw: a larger and flatter flange would have make the lamp case considerably more stable without taking away from the lamp's functionality.  As with my backpacking tent test, I attached one cord and clip to the rear of the lamp to hang from a tree branch, which made a nice reading lamp using either the area or directional option, depending on the chair/tree arrangement.

Night walking
I brought the 2 In 1 Light with me on two walks where I knew I would be returning to the car after dark.  One walk came down a 2 mile (3.2 km) moderate to flat trail, the other was mostly flat ground.  On both walks I really liked the amount of light provided by either the area or directional lamps.  The flashlight was easy to hold, and the non-slip
hand grip did just that - didn't slip out of my hand with only a light pressure to hold it. I loaned the lamp to two friends, and both of them reported the same experience - lots of light, and easy to hold.  Even when dimmed to 50% or less brightness, there was plenty of light illuminating the path.

Around the House
Using the flashlight at home was useful in some situations and not so much in others.  I needed to inspect a crawl space in my cellar, and both the area and directional features worked well, although as already noted, it could be hard to keep the lamp balanced on either its edge or base.  But on other occasions I needed to take care of putting away
hoses and other items in the yard, and the bright light was more than enough to see by.  A benefit of the light's rectangular-shaped case, as a friend discovered, is that the light can be held in one hand while also carrying something else in the same hand - such as a foam pad or a laundry basket.

Summary
All in all I like the Energizer 2 In 1 flashlight.  Area and directional functions are easy to switch between.  The lamp puts out a nice bright, white light.  And, the case is easy to hold.  Although I found the light more useful for non-backpacking purposes, it's great for car-camping and other trail trips when weight and bulk are not at issue.  The comfortable rectangular shape of the case fits well in either hand, and lets me carry another small object in the same hand without dropping the flashlight.

I've been using the 2 In 1 light for over four months, and it's been part of my household and outdoor equipment during that time.  I still like the light, and it's still running the original set of batteries with which it came (since I haven't used it enough to wear them out, and I'm loathe to waste batteries just for a capacity test).  Although, as noted above, I wish that the case was better designed to be less tippy when set on its end or side, the light has proved to be very useful for many types of uses.

Acknowledgments    

Thanks to Energizer and to BGT for the opportunity to evaluate the 2 In 1 flashlight.


Reviewed By
Bob Dorenfeld
Central Colorado Mountains




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