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Thread: Fenix FD30 review

  1. #1
    Big Mouth G.Mitchell's Avatar
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    Fenix FD30 review

    I have been interested in flashlights from a very young age. My fascination with flashlights has led me to pursue brighter and more impressive lights moving from bulbs to LEDs and from alkaline to NiMH to lithium primaries and on to Li-ion. There have been substantial changes in bulb and battery technology which Fenix has obviously embraced. From my first Fenix over 10 years ago to this most recent Fenix I am reviewing I have been impressed with their quality and value.

    Over the past 15 years I have pocket carried a variety of lights and during that same time I have owned dozens of top quality flashlights. It will be from that experience that I will be reviewing this light. My plans are to review this light as an edc pocket light as well as my work light in the telecommunications trade.

    Here are the goodies up for review





    The contents again are typical Fenix, spare o-ring, spare switch cover, lanyard, holster, as well as the normal paperwork.




    My first impression of this light was very positive. The light met and exceeded what I have come to expect from Fenix. The fit and finish were great, good
    consistent anodizing, and nice clean threads with a well lubricated o-ring.





    Charging the new battery was pretty straight forward; plug in the included cable to a laptop and into the battery. First charging took over 2 hours; subsequent charges took on average of an hour depending on how much I had used the light. While charging a red LED is visible, once fully charged a blue LED is visible.




    The battery also works in the XTAR VP2 charger; charging at a similar rate.




    The Fenix battery is longer than other 18650 cells I have used due to the protective circuit with built in charger.






    The light will run on 18650 cells or 2x CR123a cells. The CR123a cells are smaller in diameter and will rattle in the light. There are spacers available but I use a piece of paper wrapped around the two cells to make up for the smaller diameter of the CR123a cells.

    Using three different batteries I checked the draw on the cells.




    There is no visible difference between the 2xCR123a batteries and one 18650. I keep spare CR123a cells in both of my vehicles, my work truck, and in all my kits so I like that I can run 2xCR123a cells in a pinch.

    User interface is very straight forward, turn on/off with the tail switch and change modes with the side mode switch. To change from flood to throw rotate the ring in either direction; to change from flood to throw and back to flood or vice versa. The movement is nice and tight, with no slop or wiggle. Strobe is accessed from any mode by pressing and holding the side mode switch.

    In flood mode there is a nice even beam; throw mode doesnít reduce spill significantly; the real difference is the hot spot in the center of the beam.










    I have carried this light daily for the past three weeks. I found the ability to adjust the beam useful in many situations. The flood light gives great coverage and was usable for most of my daily needs. There were several situations that the throw really came in handy. While working on my truck using the flood mode I dropped a bolt down into the engine compartment, the spot light made it much easier to spot where the piece had fallen. At work I used the flood most of the time; however if I really needed to look at details I would use the throw for extra clarity.

    The light has accidentally been turned on in my pocket while wearing a tool belt or climbing harness. I am not sure how long it was on but it got HOT in my pocket which is how I knew it was on. I will start leaving the light in a lower mode in case the light gets turned on accidentally again.

    Three weeks isnít a long durability test by any means however I am pleased with how the light has held up. So far the finish is holding up really well with only noticeable wear on sharp edges of the tailcap. Daily pocket carry in dirty and dusty environments has allowed some grit to get into the rotating ring. This hasnít affected the actual use of the light but it can be heard when rotating the ring.




    I am very particular about pocket clips on my lights. Initially I was concerned about how this clip was attached; this concern was put to rest with zero problems due to the clip. I would prefer a clip that doesnít rotate so the user could more easily index the light and switch to make it easier to turn on when pulled from a pocket. Right now the light can rotate in the clip and the switch can be hardier to access depending on clip location.

    In the end all I would change is the LED tint; with my preference being a neutral or warm tint. This light really could fill a lot of roles for a wide variety of end users. My work experience is in trades; I think trades people that require a flashlight for work could really benefit from a light like this. The flood is great without a harsh hot spot but when throw is needed it is readily available. As an emergency light this light would be handy as well. For me a light like this would be perfect in my vehicle or emergency kits.

    To me this light has met and exceeded the expectations I have for Fenix lights; Fenix continues to put out quality lights that impress in fit, form, finish, and function. Well done Fenix.

    Thank you Notosora-Fenix for providing this light for me to review.

    If anyone has questions I will do my best to answer them.


    Last edited by G.Mitchell; 05-13-2017 at 02:18 PM.
    Looking for members in Grande Prairie Alberta interested in wilderness skills, survival skills, camping, prepping, shooting, etc.

  2. #2
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    Nice review. That's a neat and interesting way of charging batteries.

  3. #3
    Big Mouth G.Mitchell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scratch1 View Post
    Nice review. That's a neat and interesting way of charging batteries.
    Thank you. I do like the charger on the cell. Made it easy to top up the cell anytime I was at my computer.
    Looking for members in Grande Prairie Alberta interested in wilderness skills, survival skills, camping, prepping, shooting, etc.

  4. #4
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    Nice review! I wish I would be selected next time

  5. #5
    GunNutz stratosonic's Avatar
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    Nice review and thanks for doing it.

    I purchased this light from Stavros at opaextreme just the other day. He's here on CGN. I presently own the Fenix LD12. It uses a rechargeable AA battery and being pocket-sized, it's a very practical flashlight. I've owned the Fenix PD41 which uses 4 AA batteries. It's a powerful flashlight and I highly recommend it. I wanted a smaller flashlight with a powerful beam like the PD41 but with the ability to focus the beam. After checking out all of the Fenix flashlights, I settled on the FD30. Looking forward to receiving it and trying it out.
    Member: CPC, BCWF, CCFR and CSSA.

  6. #6
    Big Mouth G.Mitchell's Avatar
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    Thank you both.
    Looking for members in Grande Prairie Alberta interested in wilderness skills, survival skills, camping, prepping, shooting, etc.

  7. #7
    GunNutz freezer filler's Avatar
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    Great job! Very insightful review.

  8. #8
    Big Mouth G.Mitchell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by freezer filler View Post
    Great job! Very insightful review.
    Thank you sir.
    Looking for members in Grande Prairie Alberta interested in wilderness skills, survival skills, camping, prepping, shooting, etc.

  9. #9
    Business Member Notosora-Fenix's Avatar
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    Thank you G.Mitchell

    Hi G.Mitchell

    Just wanted to thank you for taking the time to do this full and detailed review for CGN members to view. Thank you for sharing your honest opinions and experiences with this light

    Regards


    Notosora-Fenix

    Looking to add a quality brand of flashlights to your current line up?
    Dealer enquiries are always welcome: Become an Authorized Fenix dealer

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    Dealer enquiries are always welcome: Become an Authorized Ruike dealer

    www.notosora.com
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  10. #10
    Big Mouth G.Mitchell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Notosora-Fenix View Post
    Hi G.Mitchell

    Just wanted to thank you for taking the time to do this full and detailed review for CGN members to view. Thank you for sharing your honest opinions and experiences with this light

    Regards
    You're most welcome, and thank you for the feedback.
    Looking for members in Grande Prairie Alberta interested in wilderness skills, survival skills, camping, prepping, shooting, etc.

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