PUBLISHED: 12:31 12 April 2016 | UPDATED: 12:31 12 April 2016
The editor is blown away by the latest offering from Fenix
Regular readers will know that I love high-power torches, and I’m constantly amazed at the rate of development in this area. Just when you think you’ve seen the most incredible performance from a torch, it’s quickly upstaged by the next one. I’m a great fan of Fenix products because I feel that they offer quite excellent performance at reasonable prices. I’ve used them for many years and never once had a failure of any kind, despite some pretty rough handling in nasty, wet conditions. The construction is machined aluminium, all sealed with ‘O’ rings so water and mud cause no worries.
The model on test is a first for me in that it can be focused from a narrow pencil beam right out to a super-wide flood, adding greatly to the versatility. To accommodate this, the reflector housing is larger than most, in this class at 45mm in diameter. I’ve learned that this is a key dimension in creating a narrow beam and Fenix have employed an innovative lens that allows the PD40 to offer a wide flood as well.
The power is quite stunningly impressive at 1000 lumens, the most powerful I’ve tried in this class, but high output requires lots of power, so the next upgrade Fenix used was to increase the battery size to the new 26650 Li-Ion rechargeable battery that has 4800 mAh capacity. This is fatter than the more common 18650 (2600 mAh) meaning that the body of the torch is thicker too, however this still fits in your pocket easily.
Lots of people, me included, already own 18650 batteries, and cleverly, Fenix has included an adaptor to accept them. Clearly, they cannot provide the performance of the 26650 but it’s great to be able to use them as spares. I’m stunned that this small pocket torch offers nearly 2½ hours at 1000 lumens. Just incredible!
In the field I instantly fell in love with the ability to focus the beam. Set at its narrowest, it makes an excellent spotter, allowing me to see rabbits at huge distances, way beyond any other similar torch I’ve used before. Knowing the battery has such huge capacity I felt free to use it as much as I needed, rather than worrying about conserving energy. I also really liked the new switching arrangement. Typically, these torches have a tail cap switch but the PD40 has one near the reflector, right where your thumb sits on the body tube. The same switch also toggles through the power settings and I much prefer this arrangement.
Just when I thought torches couldn’t get any better - they have, and the PD40 has become my regular companion in the field on every trip.
Weight 159 grammes
Tel 02921 157162