Below is the text for my Princeton Tec Genesis Flashlight. The HTML can be
seen in the test folder at:
Thanks for working with me on this test. I will be leaving for a 3 day OOP
in about 30 minutes, so no rush on this edit.
John R. Waters
LONG-TERM TEST LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS
During the final testing phase the Genesis was used almost every day while
walking the ranch here in Colorado as well as on hikes at night, including a
3 mi (5 km) snowshoe trek at about 9,200 ft (2,800 m) above sea level (all
of this was at night - otherwise it wouldn't be worth mentioning when
testing a flashlight).
PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD
I have used the same set of Sanyo CR123A batteries that came with the unit.
They still project a useable light about 15 ft (5 m) to 20 ft (6 m) down the
trail. In fact, I was just outside a few minutes before I started writing
this part of the report. Since keeping exact track of time used is difficult
in the field, my estimate is that the light has been on for well over 15
hours. I have seen no sharp decrease is light output. I can see the light
getting less bright over time, but I saw no sharp decrease, just a gradual
decrease and the decline was not noticeable until usage passed 10 hours or
I like the push button on/off switch on the back of the unit because it
enables me to use the light momentarily to save on battery life. When
walking down a moonlit trail or searching for items in the tent I can just
push the button to turn the light on for a few seconds and lift my thumb off
to turn it off. My dog has learned to like it on his night walks, too. I
flash the light each time he barks and he thinks he's turning the light on
by barking so he keeps right at it. Kinda funny.
I have new CR123A batteries that I bought on line. Yes, they are available
at most local stores, but I purchased brand new 3 volt 1300 mAh batteries
for $ 92 USD each. I was going to order a CR123 charger and a few
rechargeables, but after doing some searching, I have not seen anything
costing under $28 USD for a good smart charger (that won't overcharge the
batteries) and two rechargeable CR123 batteries that are 650 mAH. If I can
purchase 1300 mAh batteries for $1 USD each that will last for 15 hours or
more, I think I'll use the disposable ones for the simplicity. It's not a
"green" solution and maybe I'll change that opinion as I get more devices
that use CR123 in my gear closet.
"mAh" is milliamp hours, by the way. A higher mAh rating means a
fully-charged battery can power a device that consumes more power for a
longer amount of time before becoming depleted and needing to be re-charged.
For example, a battery rated at 1500 mAh can power a device drawing 100
milliamps for 15 hours, or a device drawing 150 milliamps for 10 hours. The
Sanyo CR123A batteries that come with the Genesis are rated at 1400 mAh. So
buying rechargeable CR123 batteries that only have 600 mAh capacity would
reduce the LED on time to less than half. I would need to have more than 3
sets of rechargeables to rotate them through to cover the same amount of
time as the disposables. At least that's how I see it right now.
This flashlight uses 3.0 volt CR123A batteries. There are 3.6 volt CR123
batteries available and I will have to check with Princeton Tec before using
3.6 volt batteries. I almost ordered the 3.6 volt batteries by mistake.
I have not had any issues with the rear battery compartment O-ring coming
off or breaking. The O-ring is really thin and it was a concern I had.
However, I only removed the accessory ring a few times. Each time the
accessory ring is removed it stresses the O-ring because it needs to pass
over it. The O-ring stays in place well when just removing the battery
I've dropped the unit in snow and took it from the warmth of my pocket out
into 1 F (-17 C) temperatures with no issues and no fogging over of the
lens. I've also dropped it on bedrock and was amazed that it kept right on
working. I have dropped many flashlights in the same manner and the bulbs
would pop and not work. The metal finish on the Genesis is like new. The
rubber center moldings have slight markings probably made by fingernails or
when hitting the ground when dropped or from being clipped on my belt.
I have to admit that I still can't figure out how to easily and safely carry
the colored lenses around without scratching them up or losing them. In most
cases I would only want to bring one lens anyway (the red one). There was
one night in a tent when I unscrewed the front lens holder and the clear
lens fell off and rolled around and went under my legs somewhere. Good thing
the Genesis still works with the lens holder off, because I needed the light
to find the clear lens. Now I know the lens is not locked in place and can
fall off as soon as the lens cover is removed.
In all, this is a really neat flashlight. At 45 lumens brightness, this
thing lights up hillsides (we call them hogbacks here in Colorado) several
hundred feet/meters away with fully charged batteries. The batteries can
last a long time, (up to 20 hours of light using 1400 mAh batteries) and the
current control circuits provide constant light for a longer period as
battery voltage is depleted, although the light will still get dimmer as the
battery loses voltage. It's pretty hefty. It floats like a rock, but has
waterproof integrity down to 3 ft (1 m) for up to 30 minutes. It is durable.
It'll be in my pack for a long time.
Thank you to Backpackgeartest.org and Princeton Tec for the opportunity to
test this neat light.
John R. Waters