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Scout
08-30-2007, 13:16
I've been reading the threads on dive lights with interest since I'm a under-equipped noob. :smiley23:

I hope to be able to do a tropical trip once or twice a year, but most of my diving will be in fresh water. My local lake has visibility that ranges from a few inches to 15' feet depending on the conditions and I understand it's like nighttime 24/7 when going deeper than 10' during rainy season.

What kind of light(s) would cover the occasional tropical trip and some lake diving? I just received the latest Scuba Diving mag and I noticed that some of the lights are pretty big $$. Is there some recommendations for those of us that don't want to sell a kid to finance our dive obsession?

TxScubaBear
08-30-2007, 13:30
I just bought (from a member on another board) a real nice kit, Princeton Tec Ultimate Diver light kit I think it was called; you can get them new around $120? I got a good deal on it, not used but he heeded to sell it; the bigger one runs on I think 8 D-cells, the smaller 8 AA-batteries; watch the Used section or put a notice in the WTB; check out ST's web site for specials as well!

Here is some nice packages at ST:
http://www.scubatoys.com/store/Scuba_Light_Paks.asp

thor
08-30-2007, 15:01
I'm a big fan of the Printeton Tech Miniwave LED. I think ST sells it for $89. Don't buy a cheapo light, just to save some money. I would save up and buy the best light you can, for your needs. I believe this light is one of the best buys out there, although there are better lights available.

finflippers
08-30-2007, 15:33
I hope to be able to do a tropical trip once or twice a year, but most of my diving will be in fresh water. My local lake has visibility that ranges from a few inches to 15' feet depending on the conditions


I dive lakes with the same vis. and I am very happy with my UK SL6 that I use on most every dive. It is a great light for it's size.
http://www.scubatoys.com/store/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=UKSL6

I do have a larger light but rarely use it because it is very bulky and doesn't put out much more brightness and it is just a little broader area of light then my SL6.

I do want to try a canister light one of these days but so far prefer my SL6.

greyzen
08-30-2007, 15:41
I have an SL 6 and I dive it in lake travis... works great

in_cavediver
08-30-2007, 18:35
Personal opinion only.

For a good all around light, a pelican 3c, UK sl4 or sl6 is hard to beat.

For a good backup - the same pelican 3c or any of a large number of 4AA lights work well

For a true primary big light - Nothing beats a can light. Be it halogen, LED or HID. (my nod is for HID) . There are a few handheld versions out as well but I think of these as more canister/lighthead merged lights.

For just the occasional vacation diver, I'd get a 3c pelican and 4aa pelican light. They can be had for less than $50 total if you shop around. (and lifetime guarantee as well)

Charlotte Smith
08-30-2007, 19:12
UK Sunlight c-4 it has great light with 2- bulbs for bright and brighter!

JahJahwarrior
08-31-2007, 11:13
If you are willing to buy used, you can find 10watt HID can lights for $300ish often on Scubaboard and The Deco Stop. Be warned: don't go to the Deco Stop unless you are interested in and fluent with Technical diving and its jargon. Also, they don't like it if you only go there to get good deals on stuff, so you really need to make a few posts from time to time, and if you talk at all about recreational diving, you will run into trouble. It's a board with a very specific topic: tech diving, and that is why you can find can lights there :)

jeraldjcook
08-31-2007, 11:18
I take an UK SL4 on all my dive, even during the day. It's not enough light for deeper dives in the local lakes and quarries, for that I take my UK C8 LED. The Princeton Tec Shockwave LED is really nice as well, much brighter than my C8 LED, but about equal to the C8 LED Plus. Can lights are nice, but there is no way I'm going to spend that kind of money on a light, yet.

BSea
08-31-2007, 11:32
Don't buy a cheapo light, just to save some money. I would save up and buy the best light you can, for your needs. I believe this light is one of the best buys out there, although there are better lights available.
I could not agree more with this statement. Some things you can save money with on dive gear, and have something that last for many years. Like a regulator. But I've gone through a few cheaper light, and now I have some expensive flashlights, that I no longer will use for diving because they flooded on nearly every dive.


For just the occasional vacation diver, I'd get a 3c pelican and 4aa pelican light. They can be had for less than $50 total if you shop around. (and lifetime guarantee as well)
The good news about pelican lights are that they have a lifetime guarantee. I have a 3C light sabre that they replaced no questions asked. I just had to ship it back to them. I've heard from other divers that have said the same thing. So the bad news is that you will probably have to use their guarantee.

Now I realize that $100 + for light seems pretty steep, but when you add up the cost of replacing cheaper lights, then it becomes more easily justified to pay more up front.

Here's one of the lights (http://www.salvosupply.com/inc/sdetail/741)I take on my trips. Here's a light (http://www.oxycheq.com/Oxycheq/torchbackup/4A4057D0-8039-4194-83E5-A2E901922084.html)I'm thinking about. The oxycheq light will be carried by ST if they don't have it already. Plus they'll have it for a better price based on the other Oxycheq gear they sell.

scubasamurai
08-31-2007, 12:40
c4 i currently have and updating to an led light. my back up light , which everybody seems to love, is the pcm ikelite. small and powerful, works better than the c4 , but maybe i should change the batteries

Charlotte Smith
08-31-2007, 13:54
c4 i currently have and updating to an led light. my back up light , which everybody seems to love, is the pcm ikelite. small and powerful, works better than the c4 , but maybe i should change the batteries


Batteries are a must!

Charles R
08-31-2007, 13:57
I would sugest but the best light that you can possible see yourself using in the next year I bought a light then another that was brighter then I bought a 10W HID can light then I bought a 21W HID I could have saved alot of money if I would have thought my purchase out fully from the start.

Scout
08-31-2007, 14:24
I have an SL 6 and I dive it in lake travis... works great

Thanks for all the great info! I've got a better idea now of what to look for.

BTW, Lake Travis was exactly the lake I had in mind...

ScaredSilly
09-04-2007, 14:52
I will ditto the UK SL4 - I am using the Halogen version because that it was I have. It has survived alot of abuse and use. I have used this for years for day time diving. On a pitch it works for night dives but typically it is my back up light.

greyzen
09-04-2007, 15:10
In lake travis the vis is so hit or miss anyhow, only like a 1,000 light would keep the vis normal.

so unless you wanna bring the sun or a 1,000 light...

CrzyJay456
09-04-2007, 17:17
If you are willing to buy used, you can find 10watt HID can lights for $300ish often on Scubaboard and The Deco Stop. Be warned: don't go to the Deco Stop unless you are interested in and fluent with Technical diving and its jargon. Also, they don't like it if you only go there to get good deals on stuff, so you really need to make a few posts from time to time, and if you talk at all about recreational diving, you will run into trouble. It's a board with a very specific topic: tech diving, and that is why you can find can lights there :)

and another warning... dont have GMAIL and try to sign-up at deco stop... my BF's brother tried to do it... and it wont let you! :(

CrzyJay456
09-04-2007, 17:56
I would sugest but the best light that you can possible see yourself using in the next year I bought a light then another that was brighter then I bought a 10W HID can light then I bought a 21W HID I could have saved alot of money if I would have thought my purchase out fully from the start.

if i was gonna buy a light, and was planning to take AOW next year (around the corner) with my dive buddies... so that we can dive Spiegel Grove (day and night) and do night dives... would it be worth it to go all out all at once? maybe just a 21w HID off the bat instead of upgrading and so on?
is it reasonable to use a 21w HID for rec. nite dives? or more for just advanced stuff? cause we are planning at least a few night dives on the Spiegel grove, along with other wrecks down here... your thoughts?

techgnostic
09-04-2007, 18:06
Is lith-ion worth the extra cash over battery models?

ScaredSilly
09-04-2007, 23:06
Is lith-ion worth the extra cash over battery models?


Lithium-Ion batteries have a shelf life of about three years after that their charge capacity is greatly reduced. As if you use them alot - great. Otherwise nope.

Scoobidoo
09-05-2007, 01:05
I'm a fan of UK lights, they're well-make, durable and has great customer services. I would go with an LED, it's indestructible and doesn't cost you an arm and leg.

divechaplain-sara
09-05-2007, 02:39
My first light was a pc lite by ikelite about $28. It works really well for daytime diving in limited vis and for shining in crevices and holes. I've had it for about 4 years and have had no problems with it. Before I went on my first ocean night dive, I got a C8 from Ikelite about $75 which I used as my primary and kept my previous light for a back up. Again it is a great lite and I haven't had any problem with either of them.

Aussie
09-05-2007, 02:45
I like the UK SL4/6 lights and have both the xenon and eLED. Cant bet ST price on the xenon SL4 ($19.95). eLED a little more expensive.

Aussie

jpatmore
09-05-2007, 02:57
I bought the Princeton Tec LED pack ... has the Shockwave LED and Impact XL, and a small strobe Good value torch .. the whole pack came it about $150 and it included lanyards and retractors to attach the lights.

JugglingMonkeys
09-05-2007, 03:32
I'm a fan of UK lights, they're well-make, durable and has great customer services. I would go with an LED, it's indestructible and doesn't cost you an arm and leg.

how long do the eled plus bulbs last for?

Scout
09-05-2007, 08:56
In lake travis the vis is so hit or miss anyhow, only like a 1,000 light would keep the vis normal.

so unless you wanna bring the sun or a 1,000 light...
Would either of those fit in my BC? :smiley1:

BSea
09-05-2007, 09:20
I'm a fan of UK lights, they're well-make, durable and has great customer services. I would go with an LED, it's indestructible and doesn't cost you an arm and leg.

how long do the eled plus bulbs last for?
Probably longer than you will have the light. I couldn't find any specs on the UK website, but I looked at Halcyon's website, and they said that their new higher intensity LED last 10,000 hours. So if you divide that in half, and say you use it on every dive, and every dive is an hour, you should get somewhere in the vicinity of 5000 dives. So probably you don't have to worry too much about changing bulbs.

danielh03
09-06-2007, 02:36
I wish Surefire made dive lights!!!

ggibbs
10-02-2007, 12:31
I have a UK C4 and am very pleased. I took it to the Bahamas and dove on several night dives with a couple of dozen other divers. It was not the whitest light in the group, but I would not pay the extra bucks to get the latest and greatest. This light was more than sufficient as a primary light.

I used the light for 3 night dives with no degradation in brightness. Given that the light only takes 4 c cells, I dont think the expense of rechargeable battery pack is justified for most users.

Also, this light comes with dual bulbs. Only one works at a time. This decreases the risk of a burned out bulb during your dive trip, because you simply move the switch to the separate bulb. It also gives you the ability to choose between a flood light and a narrower beam light. Because the bulb positions are different, the shape of the beam varies.

I paid $49 at ST. This was the best price I could find online.

CompuDude
10-02-2007, 13:00
I would sugest but the best light that you can possible see yourself using in the next year I bought a light then another that was brighter then I bought a 10W HID can light then I bought a 21W HID I could have saved alot of money if I would have thought my purchase out fully from the start.

if i was gonna buy a light, and was planning to take AOW next year (around the corner) with my dive buddies... so that we can dive Spiegel Grove (day and night) and do night dives... would it be worth it to go all out all at once? maybe just a 21w HID off the bat instead of upgrading and so on?
is it reasonable to use a 21w HID for rec. nite dives? or more for just advanced stuff? cause we are planning at least a few night dives on the Spiegel grove, along with other wrecks down here... your thoughts?

I use my 21w HID on every dive, rec, tec, or otherwise. Pretty much the only dives I wouldn't bring it on are warm water tropical dives with exceedingly clear conditions.

To the OP: If you want to consider something a little more versatile and have a little bit more to spend, I'd check out the UK light cannon. It's a little overkill for your tropical vacations, but still very much in the usable range, and it will do a LOT better at lighting up your local dives in murky waters than the smaller lights will.

ccarter
10-02-2007, 13:24
I run a plain 'ol 8 C Princeton Tec basic light.. with a 8 AA plain 'ol princeton tec backup. No LED/HID for me.. too pricey at the time I purchased.

I've got to where I don't like non LED lights though.. I run pretty nice LEDs on my mountain bike's handlebars (~600 Lumens) and another LED on the helmet (~200 Lumens) riding at night and love the nice white light they throw..

ScubaJ
10-02-2007, 13:34
I'm currently diving the UK C4 LED ($63) light out at Lake Travis. I've also got the UK Q40 mini ($17) as a back up. So far both of them have served me very well.
I'd certainly go with an LED (or HID if you have some $ to burn) vs. Halogen. The light is a whiter spectrum and will result in truer colors at depth. Halogens tend to turn things a bit yellow.

So far, the UK C4 LED has been sufficient for deeper dives out at Travis. I haven't had a chance to do a night dive in the Caribbean, but if it'll work in Travis, it'll work in 100ft vis blue water. The C4 has a little bit shorter burn time than the C8, however it's quite a bit smaller and lighter, which fits my needs best. I ended up purchasing Energizer rechargeable (2500Mah) batteries for my lights. They end up saving $ in the long run, and I get significant more burn time on each set/charge vs. regular batteries.

Cojrock
10-02-2007, 19:08
I brought one of these torches about a year ago and I love it. http://www.aquatec.co.uk/pages/accessories/aquastar.php

Its not the brightest but is great to keep in your pocket as a backup or to pear into cracks and under rocks. Ive had mine to 60m+ once so am happy with its construction. Mine was $50NZ so should be less in american money. When i was diving overseas i had many people ask me where i could get one as they are so compact yet bright and being an LED the batterys last 10-20 hours.

cogrwy
04-22-2008, 13:13
Underwater Kinetics has several multi-light sets. The one I have is the Fathom Pak. It has the Sunlight C8 - a good-sized hand-held, Sunlight SL4 - a small back-up that will fit in a BC pocket, Mini Q40 with a strap to attach to your mask (not recommended-a good way to blind your buddy), and the Dive Beacon - a small AAA light to attach to your regulator at night. Don't know what they go for now; I've had mine a couple of years.

diver 85
07-07-2008, 15:41
IMO, you are asking about 2 different kind of lites ie your local needs & Carribbean needs......For the Carribbean I suggest a Q40...For your local,??? a UK 8C LED Plus??, might work.......

Sasha_K
07-07-2008, 16:02
I've just went through the nite diving class. According to my notes... :-)

You want to consider where you will be diving, meaning.
- do you need a strong pointed light
- do you need a bigger 'splash' light
Think of it as driving in fog - bigger lights dont actually help. In your case, most likely a strong piointing light (so, not wide)

In terms of brand names you want to go for:

- Pelican
- Underwater Kinetics
- Princeton tec
- Ikelite

Hope that helps