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the sebenza of flashlights

Discussion in 'Gadgets & Gear' started by steelhog, Nov 12, 2009.

  1. rod tak

    rod tak

    Feb 9, 2010
    4sevens titanium quark and maelstrom series. Much better than surefire. I've put thousands into surefire but they are working w dated technology. The maelstrom is like a 3 mo old emitter
  2. proud2deviate


    Apr 5, 2004
    I haven't ever played with one, but if The Gatlight lives up to its rep. . . They're certainly pretty. . .
  3. never too sharp

    never too sharp

    Mar 7, 2007
    Lately I've been carrying a Maratac AA that replaced a Proton Pro, and it's been sufficient. It's not the brightest, but it's bright enough to light stuff up in the daytime( ie. looking for something tiny I dropped that rolled underneath something else.), and it feeds on regular batteries, not 3V lithium$. It was half the price of the proton, with a small sacrifice in brightness and convenience(twisty vs. button).

    But that's neither here nor there because neither one of them are grail lights, so I'll just stfu now.
  4. daybd


    Oct 13, 2006
    HDS lights. Made by genius mind. Almost like Sebenza.

    I could say McGizmo but McGizmo are more custom lights and Sebenza with HDS are production.
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2011
  5. Spark

    Spark HPIC - Hatas gonna Hate Staff Member Administrator Super Mod Moderator

    Oct 2, 1998
    Exactly right. The technology is changing too quickly for an accurate comparison to be made. SureFire used to be king of the hill, but now there are plenty of other companies out there putting out similar quality lights with better light throughput.
  6. Any Cal.

    Any Cal. Banned BANNED

    Jan 1, 2006
    Is it sassing a mod if I argue with this?:D

    Though I sold the last Surefire I had last year, I still see them as being an excellent tool. I have/had Fenix, Nitecore, 4Sevens, and Surefire, and though SF isn't necessarily the newest, IME it tends to be a well rounded, reliable light. It doesn't seem to have the same issues with dirty/fidgety threads that make the mode switching sporadic, and will turn on/off every time for 6 months at a stretch instead of 2. When you are done, the light will still be worth a decent percentage of what you paid, or if you hold onto it, you will be able to make use of a large # of third party and factory parts to build what you need.

    I was thinking McGizmo would be the best response to the OP, but I think I have just convinced myself that a SF is the best counterpart.:D:thumbup:
  7. SkinnyJoe

    SkinnyJoe Banned BANNED

    Jun 9, 2007
    For walleye fishing in Minnesota, this was one of my most critical pieces of equipment. :)

    Tons of nostalgic appeal.

  8. Zero_Time


    Dec 28, 2006
    I think I want to double down with spark on this one. There are certainly boutique flashlights that offer Sebenza quality. However, there is no analogue to a sebenza, as a sebenza will hold it's value more or less after initial depreciation, and is still a benchmark of quality decades after the release, and without any change, still is. Flashlights change with technology; as technology changes so do flashlights. Reflectors had to change for LEDs, and so the same host won't hold an emitter that would maximize power; the form factor of batteries necessary changed with LEDs, etc. Point being, to not be a legacy flashlight body that you shoehorn electronics into, the best flashlight will be a moving target. Althought sebenzas have changed from bg42 steel, there's nothing as obsolete about bg42 as there is about lighting products from 5 years ago. Let's talk about the sebenza of computers... cellphones... that's a more comparable measure.

    In short: sebenza quality exists (I'd say mcgizmo, gatlight, other makers) but there is no equivalent to a sebenza in the flashlight world because the products are so different in the market and technological development.

  9. MrBadExample


    Jul 24, 2007
    McGizmo, Ra/HDS, Spy007 and maybe a few others all fit the analogy to a sebenza. Gatlights are neat, but are more about form over function, very unlike a sebenza...IMHO. Surefire, is a solid light, but as someone else mentioned earlier, more like a benchmade.

    As to those who argue that flashlight technology changes too rapidly to compare, there is some validity to that when you speak of the lower cost lights which may not be easily upgradeable. However, McGizmo's, HDS lights and many other "higher end" lights are all easily upgradeable with simple emitter swaps, and there are quite a few people that perform these services for a reasonable fee.

    Do you really need more than 80 to 170 lumens (more or less) in an edc light, not likely unless you have some specialized purpose, and if so, then it would certainly not be comparable to a sebenza. Just as a Sebenza is an all around general purpose knife, the level of light (80-170 lumens) will serve the vast majority of general uses, and new technology will not change that. The led's will certainly last for quite some time, and using rechargeable batteries makes the regular use much less painfull than primaries.

    New technology may make them brighter and run longer but that will not diminish the utility of a well made flashlight that was made several years before. As to retention of value, try picking up a 3 year old McGizmo, or a Ti Ra/HDS that was made several years ago and see how much prices on the used market have held up. ;)
  10. Roger999


    Mar 22, 2008
    You could say the same for companies like Spyderco putting out a made in USA knife with S30V for $40, or with Fenix/Quark putting out lights with R2/R5 emitters for $50. Also a lot of people buy surefire knowing that they will be taken care of ASAP if something goes wrong with the light, eg my surefire C2 tailcap sometimes didn't work and was very stiff, I emailed surefire, they asked for my address and I got a new tailcap in 2weeks.
  11. Zero_Time


    Dec 28, 2006
    Having used SF's customer service, they have prompt customer support that is free, including for parts. Sebenza's service, though I do not have one, is not.

  12. powernoodle

    powernoodle Power Member

    Jul 21, 2004
    I was into flashlights before I figured out what knives are. My flashlight arsenal.

    The Sebenza of flashlights? Some of these are off the shelf; others semi-custom. So maybe the Sebenza analogy fits.

    Maybe a High Intensity Discharge modded mag-lite by Mac's Custom's. Link.

    Pic courtesy of candlepowerforum member Strauss.

    High Intensity Discharge modded mag-lite by Mac's Custom's. A wolf in sheep's clothing.

    Runner up may be Mac's Custom mag-lite modded with an Osram Ostar 1000 Lumen 15watt LED. Link. I have one of them puppies too. :thumbup:

    Other contenders from my secret underground bunker:



    Various mag-mods.

    Thor Cyclops.

    Acro X990 high intensity discharge.
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2010
  13. sak_collector


    Jan 25, 2005
    Thats easy :D

    Small Sebenza:
  14. fiskking


    Jan 1, 2009
    I totally agree.:thumbup:

    My McGizmo Ti Pd-S and Ra (HDS) Clicky are by far the best lights I own, with a runner-up with the Liteflux LF2XT/Muyshondt Nautilus.

  15. kurtras


    Nov 18, 2010
    Personally I carry the LX2 LumaMax by Surefire. It is small, bright, and tough as tough can get. IMO it is the Sebenza of flashlights hands down.

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