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disappointed with Surefire

post #1 of 54
Thread Starter 
The first real flashlight I bought was a Surefire G2. I used it daily to deliver pizza, for years, but it got stolen. By then realizing the true value of a good, quality flashlight to those that lurk in the darkness, I replaced it with a E2e, which is practically the same light, performance wise, just smaller and much nicer.

But every few months I got to cabelas and check out what they are offering regarding LEDs. They are usually pathetic. Unbrite, blue, and at a premium price even on top of the high surefire prices.

I'm really disappointed with surefire's LEDs. It's pretty sad when the asian imports are brighter with better color at a third the price. I didn't have any problem spending $110 on my E2e back when it was state of the art. But if you are going to position yourself as a premium flashlight company you'd better stay on top of the latest developments.

It's no secret that LEDs are taking over in a big way. My fenix L1p is brighter AND lasts much longer on its ONE AA battery (I actually use a CR123 in it, so it's not just significantly but much brighter). And it's cheaper and smaller. But, it's not nearly as nice as the E2e. I want to use the Surefire since it's such a quality feel, but it lasts half the time on twice the batteries, and it's just not that bright anymore in comparison.

Have surefire gotten on the ball lately, and/or are there good LED drop-ins for the E2e yet?
post #2 of 54
I am also an ex-Surefire user (I had a E1L with a KL-1 LED head that I gave to my mother, and a L1 LumaMax that I still own), but my EDC is now a Fenix L1D CE. They had a nice-looking model in the Titan, but it is grossly overpriced and unavailable in any case. A more affordable model, the T1A is expected around the end of the year, price still TBD.
post #3 of 54
Which Surefire flashlight are you disappointed in? The E2e is not an LED. The L2 and L4 are great lights, although they are expensive. I don't think Surefire's quality has gone down hill, but I do think they haven't kept up with the Cree LEDs like other manufacturers have and yes they are overpriced, because, like other US companies, they can't compete with China. The Fenix lights are really good quality (LEDs and flashlight tube), but they haven't spent the R&D that Surefire has and they just copy technology. I have Surefire and Fenix flashlights and like them both.
post #4 of 54
Yep, I have E2e too, and Streamlight Scorpion which is about same decade flashlight. I like both a lot, but unfortanately it is the time of LEDs now, and I actually don't use those two lights much anymore. They are just eating too much battery, and lithium batteries are not cheap - at least here in Finland. I think my favorite flashlight now is LED Lenser model 7796, its about same size as those Sures, but batteries are cheap (3x AAA), and it seems like a quality product. I use it a lot at work, so its gonna get much hours.

Of cource I could update my old SureFire with some LED kit, but seems like those cost more than new LED flashlight, so I think I'm not gonna "pimp" them. Allthought I have upgrader all my MagLites with some LED kits (Terralux etc), but those are pretty cheap kits.
post #5 of 54
Thread Starter 
I do think they haven't kept up with the Cree LEDs like other manufacturers
This is what I'm talking about. I don't have any problems with Surefire's impeccable build quality, it's just that I can't see buying one of their LEDs when it's DIM compared to other cheap LEDs. And as has been said, I already have incandescent lights. I don't want any more. Incandescent technology in small lights is dead as far as I'm concerned. Surefire had better agree.
post #6 of 54
Incandescent technology in small lights is dead as far as I'm concerned. Surefire had better agree.
Some people still prefer incandescent due to their color rendition. I agree the number is dwindling, but there are many happy A2 owners.
post #7 of 54
Surefire E1B is not bad but I have been using Nitecore D10 and Extreme. The D10 uses one AA battery and its light output can be customised just like the Extreme.
post #8 of 54
Surefire's recent product line update pretty much nulled your brightness complaint. Sure, they don't get quite as bright as the latest and greatest Chinese lights, but they're competitive and generally have a good runtime/output balance.

The inexpensive Chinese lights are still going to beat Surefire on technical specs any day of the week. They do shorter runs, don't care about legacy support, have cheaper labor, do less machining, the list goes on. There's really no way Surefire ever gets price competitive again. And on the other side of the equation, custom low run lights are pretty close in price.

As for a LED head for your E2E, the KX2 would be what you're looking for. There are two versions out there. One's a 45 lumen head with 14 hours of runtime, the other's a 3/60 lumen head with 100/11 hours of run time.
post #9 of 54
Still happy with my A2, and I can't imagine replacing it anytime in the future.
post #10 of 54
Another possibility
post #11 of 54
Originally Posted by meat01 View Post
Some people still prefer incandescent due to their color rendition. I agree the number is dwindling, but there are many happy A2 owners.
I am one of those: I love my A2 and my M6's (one with MN20 and one with the MN21 - both running on LiIon rechargeable, regulated battery packs).
post #12 of 54
Surefires may be pricey but they are pretty much bombproof and snowblower proof.

I like LumaPower, Wolf Eyes and Fenix for a cheap good light though/
post #13 of 54
Surefires used to be state of the art, and I have quite a few of them. The A2 is still unique and I like it for the fact that the incandescent output is regulated. The low power led light is perfect for close use.

That being said, my EDC is usually a Nitecore Smart PD D10, or the Photon Proton Pro, both of which I like very much. My third most used EDC is a Fenix L0D, which I love for the ultra compactness.

LRI Photon Proton Pro

I've got my eye on that new Nitecore Q5 Extreme.
post #14 of 54
I'm not disappointed with Surefire at all.

Yes, if you are the type that needs the absolute best lumen to dollar ratio, Surefire will never win that race, but I have a whole drawer full of Fenix, Lumapower lights, but the ones that I grab when I need a light are my Surefire, HDS/Novatac lights. Those are the lights that I rely on if I'm actually in a situation where I need a light. My L4, E1B are my favorite lights, and they are more than bright enough for what I need them for.

I *do* prefer my HDS EDC or my Novatac 120P if I had to only choose ONE light, but they are even more expensive than Surefire.

I was initially on the Fenix lovefest bandwagon, but a couple of their lights I got needed to be sent back due to quality issues. The turnaround time was a little slow too when dealing with replacing my Fenix. Yes Surefires aren't perfect but they have been responsive whenever I needed something fixed. I don't have the confidence that the parts will be available for my Fenix down the road.
post #15 of 54
My EDC Surefire, is the Surefire pen. Every day. Great product.
Surefire Pen
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