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The Fenix PD36R Rechargeable Flashlight Is the Compact Light Source


A Compact Light Source

Fire is one of the most defining characteristics of humanity — it provided heat and protection against aggressors and could cook food. But perhaps just as important is that fire provided light — the night terrors could be driven back and humans could now continue their lives even when the sun went down. Throughout the years inventors and scientists worked to perfect improved methods for creating light — mostly static so that people could navigate around the light. But also being developed was “mobile light”, which is to say not a streetlight but a means for carrying a light while on the move. Obviously this took many forms, from candles to lamps using oil to battery driven models. And because batteries provide a safe, convenient and sensible means for providing light, flashlights are now battery driven. But technology drives ever forward and the simple, battery powered flashlight has improved as well. Which brings us to the compact and powerful Fenix PD36R USB Type-C Rechargeable Flashlight. Whose name explains a good amount of what it can do, but leaves out a lot — a lot — of the other technologies that are now built into a compact shape.


The Battery Is Powerful

So before describing this flashlight, let’s talk about its power. The rechargeable battery in this flashlight charges up faster than others of its like because it uses UB-C, which is a faster means for transferring electrical energy into the battery. As in fully powering up in 4 h ours (output time being described later). The high capacity batterycontains 5000 mAH and is removable (meaning under extreme circumstances it’s also replaceable) — to use just unscrew the light head, put the battery inside (charged of course) wih the + side up and screw the head back on. That’s it. Add to that a really nice feature in that you get to see the battery level every time the light is activated: this doesn’t happen with a lot of other flashlights and right in the middle of the switch the battery status displays itself with a color for a few seconds before disappearing. Examples: flashing green 85%-100%, a solid red for 25%-50%. Charging the battery is done through a port hidden by a small dust cover.

And considering that this is a really compact flashlight (referred to by Fenix as ultra-compact), the battery power is pretty impressive — in most cases the battery would be smaller and so less powerful. But it manages just fine, despite the PD36R being all of 5.35 x 1.04 x 1”. That’s because it’s Fenix’s first time for using a 21700 li-ion, which extends runtimes by around 2 and has a low-voltage warning to boot. Oh — there’s also overheat protection when using Turbo or High for an extended time that steps the illumination down to reduce the heat being generated.


The Flashlight Is Bright

So time to describe the flashlight.. Besides a two-way body clip for easy carrying (not that it’s that heavy at all) using a MOLLE system or otherwise. For activating the light, you can use the tactical tail switch — this gives you momentary on/off capabilities along with full on — plus there’s the side switch for cycling through the six lighting settings.

So now while it might seem boring — not if you’re in the dark and using this flashlight — let’s go through the outputs, the distance limitations of each and the amount of time the light can continue: Turbo Mode/1600 Lumens, 2hrs 50min/up to 283 meters (xxxxx feet); High Mode/800 Lumens, 5hrs 49min/up to 197 meters (xx feet); Medium/350 Lumens, 8hrs 24min/up to 128 meters (xxxx feet); Low Mode/150 Lumens, 26 hours, up to 82 meters (xxxx feet); Economy Mode/30 Lumens, 115 hours/up to 35 meters (xxx feet); Strobe Mode/1600 Lumens.

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As can be expected, the highest candela intensity is Turbo, followed by High, Medium, Low and Ecnomical.


The Features Are Cool

The PD36R wouldn’t be very useful if some water shorted it out, so it’s IP68 water resistant (meaning you can dunk it 2 meters under water, bring it back up, wipe it off and continue on your way cussing at yourself to never do something like that again). It’s also impact resistant so a short fall isn’t going to send you back to the store for a new one. Unlike a lot of other flashlights, here you get a complete package full of goodies: there’s a two way battery clip, the USB-C cable, a lanyard and holster and spare O-ring. Plus insulation film, a reminder tag and information papers.

For more detais on this flashlight, go to

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