I'm replacing some older flashlights and decided to try these small new LED lights from Pelican and Maglight. Both use 2 AAA batteries. I'm more partial to the AA size, but the small size and decent power of these two lights won me over.
Anyway, here they are, Pelican 1920 on top and Maglight on the bottom. SAK Trekker shown for size comparison:
The Pelican is made in China and the Maglight in USA. Visually, the Pelican obviously has more tacticool appeal, in my opinion. The Maglight looks like, well, a Maglight.
Some initial observations:
-- Pocket clips: The Pelican's is far better, seems to be permanently attached. The Maglight clip slips over the flashlight barrel - and I'm certain it won't stay there under any serious load.
-- Switching: Pelican is operated by pushbutton on the end of the barrel; it allows momentary activation by partially depressing the button, which may be useful for signaling, etc. The Maglight operates like all Maglights: You rotate the flashlight head.
-- Lanyard: Maglight has a small lanyard hole on the end of the barrel, no lanyard included. Pelican has no lanyard hole.
-- Adjustability: Like all Maglights, this one has limited focusing function, from wide- to pencil-beam. The effect is not as good as with the old incandescent Maglights. You can also remove the head to use the LED as an area light, which seems to work well. The Pelican offers neither.
-- Size: The Maglight is smaller in every dimension and also feels lighter (I didn't weigh them). The Pelican feels more substantial
-- Cost: I paid $17.95 for the Maglight (full price at REI) and $24.95 for the Pelican (on sale at a local electronics shop, normal price, I think, was $29.95).
Here's a look at the packaging and the advertised specs. Interestingly, the cheaper and plainer Maglight has much hotter specs and WAY better battery life: 5 hrs, 45 min. versus 2 hrs., 45 mins for the Pelican. These are the advertised burn times, so I'll have to see what happens in real life.
And here's a look at the beam patterns. This was shot on my garage wall at night, with the lights about 6' from the wall and 3' apart. The Maglight is on the right, focused to provide the narrowest beam:
To me, the Maglight beam looks hotter and more well-defined.
In short, if I was to buy another, it would be another Maglight. For less money, you get a better beam with useful options and way better (advertised) battery life. And on top of that, it's made in USA.