Torches

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During outdoor activities such as hiking, camping, cycling and diving or simply in the event of a power failure in your home, it is useful and safe to always have an alternative light source at hand.

In fact, for security reasons, the flash of your mobile phone is often not enough. Depending on the width of the area to be lit, you can rely on torches or lanterns.

Practical to carry, flashlights are the ideal object if you need a beam of light that focuses on a particular direction or a precise point. If instead you want to light up a very large area, you will have to opt for a lantern.


How to choose a flashlight

Commercially available torches vary mainly according to the type of power supply, light bulb and model.

The type of battery affects the duration and power of the torch; alkaline batteries are the cheapest, with an initial voltage of 1.5 V, but they are not efficient in cold temperatures. Lithium batteries with a voltage of 1.8 or 3 V have a low self-discharge and are resistant to cold. There are also high-performance rechargeable Li-Ion batteries with a voltage of 4.2 V.

As for the types of light bulbs, these have different characteristics depending on the power, measured in lumens, and energy consumption. Incandescent and halogen bulbs have an average life of about 1000 hours, have average power but produce heat. LED and xenon bulbs are instead efficient, brighter and have a longer life.

Depending on the use that will be made of them, the torches finally differ in model and size. From keychain torches to those that can be worn on the head (suitable for cycling), up to larger torches, during the purchase it is important to consider all the elements to identify the torch that best suits your needs.

Other features to consider are the possibility to adjust the light intensity and the weather resistance.


How to choose an underwater torch

For those who enjoy night diving and exploring the inside of underwater caves, a classic waterproof torch will not be enough. There are in fact two main models of underwater torches: compact torches and illuminators with separate power pack.

Compact torches are easy to handle and, depending on the size, can be used for both night and day dives. The illuminators with separate power supply are instead connected with a cable to the battery pack brought to the sides and have a brighter light.

Other features to consider are the size and brightness. The smaller torches are more suitable for day dives or as a reserve during night-time ones; for night dives or in caves and wrecks, it is advisable to use larger sized flashlights as they will be the only source of light.

As far as light bulbs are concerned, tungsten and halogen bulbs are cheaper, but have lower brightness and greater consumption; HID and LED bulbs are brighter and more reliable, and consume less.

Furthermore, depending on the more or less frequent use of the torch, you can opt for rechargeable or disposable batteries.
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