The World's Most Powerful LED and HID Flashlight: Surefire's Beast II - 2000 Lumens

But also one of the world's most expensive: 7200 US dollars

Flashlights have gone a long way since the one-bulbed, bulky devices we used to play around with as kids, but there are several models out there that are simply out of this world, as they're capable of providing more light even than a powerful projector. And that's exactly the case with the latest such item from Surefire (a traditional manufacturer of LED flashlights), who has launched the Beast II, a flashlight (actually, a flashlight-type illumination tool, as the vendors call it) which provides no less than 2000 lumen, the equivalent of 130 two D-cell flashlights.

This whopping power output is generated by the High Intensity Discharge (HID) lamp built within the Beast II, which is a very efficient solution, as it generates almost four times the lumen output of an incandescent lamp for an equal power input. Actually, due to their very interesting features, these HID lamps are used on a very wide range, as for example in streetlights and stadium lights and what's really amazing here is that the designers have managed to cram up within the bowels of the Beast II a 10.16-cm diameter reflector.

Moreover, the manufacturers have also included an array of 12 white light-emitting diodes into the reflector, thus enhancing the device's level of utility. Moreover, the device can also function as a general-use light since, whenever the HID lamp is not in use, since the combined light output of these LEDs is about the same as a two D-cell flashlights.

The Beast II is quite rugged as well, since it is built from aerospace-grade aluminum with a hard-anodized finish and is virtually immune to failure from mechanical shock. It works with no less than 20 x 123A Lithium batteries, which provide a total functioning time of around 1.5 hours in HID mode and 20 hours in LED mode and is rather bulky, as it measures 388 mm in length, has a bezel diam of around 100 mm, at an overall weight of 2 kilograms.

Quite obviously, the Beast II is no cheap item, as it retails for around 7200 US dollars, which might seem to be quite an expensive item at a first sight, but it's actually not that much, considering the fact that this device is quite a rare item.

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By    7 Aug 2007, 13:46 GMT