Best Battery Cell for Portable Chargers: Comparing 18650, 21700, and Polymer…


With premium 21700 battery cells, the DifferCell 30W USB C portable charger is a compact, lightweight power bank for your Nintendo Switch, iPad, Surface Go and many more USB-C devices. Weighing only 6.88oz, it’s 4.5 x 1.8 x 1 frame makes it a great cell phone battery back up that can comfortably fit in most s and compartments. The DifferCell 30W supports fast charging for Apple, Samsung’s AFC and Huawei’s FCP charging protocols.

Save Your Time, Energy and Money

We understand first-hand how strenuous a search can become for a power solution. Whether you’re looking for daily or supplemental power there’s a few different factors you must consider prior to purchasing. We’ve become equipped on focusing in on the right questions to procure the right power solution for you. We’ll save you:

  • Time, from having to research the knowledge we already have.
  • Money, from buying power solutions that potentially will not be compatible for what you need them for.
  • Energy, from the hours of research buying testing returning researching again buying again and crossing your fingers for the right outcome.

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After you have purchased any product from J-Go Tech within 30 days of receipt and are unsatisfied for any reason, you can return the product to us and we will gladly refund to you 100% of its purchase price. Please inspect the product within 30 days of receipt.

Zero-Risk With 100% Guarantee Against Manufacturer Defects

J-Go Tech offers a 100% guarantee against manufacturer defects.

In the occurrence of a manufacturer’s defect, we will send a replacement or refund the purchase price of the product.

Customer Reviews

I originally purchased this charger because I travel for business and work in remote locations without access to charging. Since then, it’s something i make sure i have wirh me before i leave the house everyday. It’s the perfect size, incredibly convenient, and charges my Note 20 Ultra around 3.5 times. Also, while not recommended, my significant other dropped it in a lake on accident. He saw my disappointment and ordered another one immediately. however, it still works! Rugged, convenient, and affordable. 10/10 will be keeping the second one he ordered so I can have two lol.

Fast charger but dont work on things thar need small power lile bluetooth earphones. The battery turn off


With a high powered 30W USB-C port, the Differcell 30W is our smallest laptop power bank.

With a 10,000 mAh battery, this battery provides a great balance between size and capacity. It is perfect for powering all your mobile devices and provide a power boost to your laptop’s battery. With pass-through charging capabilities, you can both input and output power at the same time.


Next Generation Technology

The power banks within our DifferCell product collection are engineered with 21700 battery cells.

With 21700 cells, the energy density of each internal battery cell is increased by 20% and monomer capacity is 35% more than the normal cell, to ensure the best performance in the smallest sized frame possible.

These cells can be recharged up to 1,500 times, compared to the typical 500 recharges offered by standard 18650 battery cells.

They are proven to last longer, increasing the overall lifespan of the power bank.


The DifferCell 30W Power Bank was carefully engineered with a multi-point safety system to prevent over-heating, short-circuits, over-charging and over-voltage.


Simultaneously charge 2 devices.


Built with attention to detail, the smooth flat surface will prevent it from rolling off any surface.


Compact with high performance 21700 battery cells.


Quick and simple to read. Know when it’s time for a recharge.


Charge your mobile devices with the high powered USB-A port. Capable of outputting up to 18W of power, you can charge up your mobile devices at lightning speed.

Engineered for performance. Constructed with detail. Built for durability. The DifferCell 30W is positioned as the one of the best compact 30W power solutions to charge all of your devices on-the-go.


How do I know if my portable charger is fully charged? When four LED lights indicators keep on, it means the power bank is fully charged.

How long does it take to recharge this device? 2 hour with a 18W PD wall charger.

Can I carry this on the plane? Yes

Will this charge my iPhone 7 and my Nintendo Switch? Yes

Output USB C 30WUSB A 18W

Battery Capacity 10,000mAh | 18.5Wh

Dimensions 4.57 L x 1.83 W x 1 H116 L x 46.5 W x 25.5 H mm

Materials Aluminum Metal ABS

USB C Port 30W Output 18W Input PD Version 3.0: SupportedPPS Charging: Supported

USB A Port 18W Output Apple Charging at 5V/2.4A: SupportedSamsung Charging at 5V/2A: Not SupportedQC 2.0 Charging: Supported at 5V, 9V 12V QC 3.0 Charging: SupportedSamsung AFC Charging: Supported at 9V 12VHuawei FCP Charging: Supported at 9V/2AHuawei SCP Charging: Not Supported

For international orders: J-Go Tech offers a free standard shipping (via United States Postal Service First Class International Package Service) on all orders that do not contain lithium-ion batteries. Customers may choose alternative shipping options at the price(s) displayed during the checkout process. Please review our COVID-19 page for shipping delays based on your location.

International customers will be responsible for any applicable duties, taxes and/or other fees required by their national/federal authorities to import the goods into their country.

For domestic orders: J-Go Tech offers free standard shipping on all orders that will be delivered to customers located within the United States of America and its territories. Customers may choose from expedited shipping and express shipping options at checkout.

Please note, all orders received after 1:00pm EST may not ship until the following business day.

x1 Power Bankx1 USB C to A CableUser Manual

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Best Battery Cell for Portable Chargers: Comparing 18650, 21700, and Polymer Batteries

What do the Tesla Model 3, the newest hoverboards, and fancy vaping mods have in common with your laptop, flashlight, and smartphone? They are all battery-powered and use cordless energy to function.

Things have changed a lot since Sony first popularized the Lithium-ion battery back in 1991.

These days, when you have a quality power bank battery, such as the one in a RAVPower portable charger, you have enough energy to power your favorite devices several times. No cords are necessary; you can charge your devices wherever you are.

You probably have several essential mobile devices— like most people. If you’ve been using a portable charger with an older battery, its charge probably gets depleted very fast. Chances are it runs out of charge when you need it most.

We’re also going to tell you what Tesla electric cars and the new RAVPower portable charger 21700 have to do with the changes.

What is An 18,650 Battery?

It’s a lithium-ion battery cell classified by its size: 18,650. The “18” represents the cell’s 18mm diameter. The “65” stands for its 65mm length, and the “0” denotes the cell’s cylindrical form.

What is a 21,700 Battery?

This is a rechargeable lithium-ion cylindrical cell.

The same naming strategy applies here:

  • 21 represents the 21mm diameter
  • 70 represents the 70mm length
  • 0 represents the cylindrical cell form

What’s the Difference between 18,650 and 21,700 Batteries?

From the measurements above, you can easily tell the new-generation lithium-ion battery cell type 21,700 has a larger volume than the older 18,650 battery cell.

Find out the quick volume and energy capacity calculations below. It’s nothing technical, we promise.

What is a Polymer Battery?

It’s a rechargeable lithium-ion battery cell that uses a polymer electrolyte.

Many polymer batteries available now are Lithium-ion-polymer batteries. The big difference between Li-Ion and Li-Po batteries is the electrolytes used. Li-Po batteries also use a combination of laminated sheets rather than the rigid shells used in Li-Ion batteries.

Also, while lithium-ion cells adopt the traditional cylindrical and prismatic forms, lithium-polymer cells come in flexible foil pouches.

How Are the Three Battery Cells Different?

We’re comparing five distinct features to help you get a good grasp of the battery cells so you can decide which is the best power bank battery cell for your needs.

Energy Density

How long do 18,650 batteries hold charge for?

This short calculation below shows that a 21,700 battery offers up to 46% more energy capacity than its 18,650 counterpart.

The 21,700 battery cell achieves that by offering an extra 5mm X 3mm volume and 7,701 cubic millimeters more.

Both the 18,650 and 21,700 batteries are based on the traditional Lithium-ion battery cell. According to research, Li-Ion battery cells have a slightly better energy density compared to Li-Po battery cells. So, if you have many devices to charge, choose a RAVPower power bank with a 21,700 lithium-ion battery cell.

Elon Musk and his team decided to use a variation of the 21,700 Li-Ion battery cells, the Tesla 2170 battery cells, to power the Tesla Model 3 up to 399-499 miles.

That’s a big improvement than what the older two models could achieve on a single charge with their 18,650 Li-Ion battery cells.

Safety and Stability

This is one of two areas where polymer battery cells outdo Li-Ion cells. High-capacity Li-Ion batteries were in the news a while ago for exploding and were banned from flights in different places.

However, advanced battery technologies by reputable manufacturers have eliminated the issue of Li-Ion batteries exploding if they overcharge or overheat.

For example, despite its incredibly high output, the RAVPower PD Pioneer 20,000mAh 60W portable charger (RP-PB201) comes with an entire safety system (iSmart Technology).

The system is geared towards protecting you, your loved ones, and dear devices from burns, overheating, overcharging, and short-circuiting.

The 21,700 battery technology makes for slower discharging and higher thermal stability than the 18,650 battery technology, according to a 2018 research study.

Portability and Weight

This is another area where the polymer battery cell wins.

While polymer batteries are no longer made of plastic, they still use lightweight, more flexible, and ultra-thin materials that make them suitable for use in highly-portable devices.

That’s why most phones and ultra-thin power banks now feature non-removable Li-Po batteries. The batteries are compact and are usually attached to the devices’ other components.

But we’re not saying that all Li-Ion batteries are huge. Some Li-Ion battery chargers are portable. You don’t have to sacrifice high capacity for portability.

A good example is the RAVPower PD Pioneer 10,000 29W portable charger (RP-PB186). Its battery is made with industry-leading LG 21,700 battery cells. They measure 4.4 X 2.0 X 1.0 inches and only weigh 6.0 oz, making it a great power bank for everyday use.

Lifespan Charging Cycles

Li-Ion battery cells tend to have more charging cycles than Li-Po battery cells. How long your Li-Po power bank will serve you depends on the materials the manufacturer used.

The good news is top-tier power bank makers, such as RAVPower, use Smart battery technologies, such as iSmart Technology, to detect a device’s optimal charging. The technology helps protect the battery from premature degradation.


The gel-based electrolyte and laminated sheets used in Li-Po batteries make them costlier to manufacture than Li-Ion batteries. Li-Ion batteries only have electrolytes, cathodes, anodes, and separators.

best, battery, cell, portable, chargers, comparing

Since the cost of production is usually passed on to the end-user, Li-Po devices tend to be more expensive than Li-Ion devices with similar specifications. The higher energy capacity of the 21,700 Li-Ion battery helps reduce battery cell costs by up to 30%. What’s more, the battery has the same output as an 18,650 battery.

That’s how Tesla has managed to sell the Model 3 for a remarkable 35,000. Li-Ion battery chargers also offer the same savings.

advanced RAVPower portable chargers—such as the RP-PB203—are reasonably-priced and offer bigger benefits.

When you get that RAVPower power bank, here’s how you can ensure it serves you for a long time.

  • Always keep it in a place that’s neither cold or hot
  • When storing your Li-Ion power bank, ensure the battery capacity is 50%
  • Apply the “20-80” rule: always charge your power bank when it discharges to 20% and disconnect it from the wall socket when it charges to 80%
  • Use a power bank battery cell technology that protects your devices’ batteries from decaying
  • Buy a charger from a reputable brand to protect your loved ones, yourself, and your devices

What Next?

The best power bank battery cell depends on your preferences. If you’re looking for higher power capacity, most Li-Ion power banks will deliver—especially those with newer 21,700 battery cells. Polymer batteries are known for their portability.

A RAVPower portable charger offers the best of both worlds: higher power capacity and portability.

Pixy Mini Compact Power Bank

A complimentary tracking number will be provided within 3 business days.

If we do not have sufficient stock in our US/AU warehouse, your order will be fulfilled from our China warehouse.

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Weighing only 98g/3.45oz, you might not even feel it in your You never have to think twice again about which powerbank leaves home with you.

Fast charge your compatible iPhone and Android devices from 0-60% in just 30 minutes.

Fully charge most smartphone 1-1.5 times. You can also fully recharge Pixy Mini in just 1.5 hours so it is always ready for your next adventure!



Ability to charge Pixy Mini via it’s USB-C Input while also charging another device via it’s USB A output which in turns saves time if you only have a single wall port.


With the pass through charging feature, you are able to charge multiple Pixy Mini at a time.

Don’t take our word for it

Was shocked as I did not expect it to be so TINY! It is literally the size of two lipsticks. Charges my phone from 0 to 50% in about 25 minutes and that’s pretty impressive for a little guy. Just bought another for my wife. Great Job!

I love it! I have to tell a little story about it. A few weeks ago we had a hurricane and I wanted to record videos with my iPhone and brought a Pix Mini with me to be on the safe side. When taking out the iPhone, I lost the power bank in the storm on the beach (where the arrow is pointing).Two days later we looked for it and found it again! Despite the storm and the sand and the rain, it was perfectly intact and had lost none of its function. Excellent!

The only powerbank I carry now. Love the tiny size and weight, I have completely stopped using my old bulky powerbank already!

The Best Flashlights of 2023

Modern flashlights are applicable for a wide range of scenarios, offering longer battery life, powerful LED luminance, and excellent color rendering. Check out our picks for the best flashlights of 2023.

If you want a powerful, versatile lighting solution, the best flashlights still offer advantages over headlamps in many scenarios.

Flashlights point wherever you want, not just where your head is pointing. Also, due to fewer weight constraints, they tend to have more powerful, longer-lasting batteries and incredible power for modest-sized devices.

And to be honest, I’m a flashlight buff. Yes, I also use headlamps a lot when I’m outdoors. But more often than not, I grab a small flashlight from my truck center console and, if I need two hands for a project, clasp it in my teeth. I just love having the ability to point it wherever I want without having to crane my neck in a specific direction.

So if you love torches, read on for what we’ve determined to be the best flashlights available today. Because GearJunkie focuses on the outdoors, I rated these based on weight, size, battery life, color rendering, and lighting versatility. You can learn a lot more about how I tested and chose these flashlights below, but right up top, I’d like to call out that this article focuses on truly excellent flashlights that can perform day in and day out, whether you use a light professionally or simply need one for camping or to store at home for a power outage.

Note: This isn’t a list of “light cannons,” as you’ll rarely need 1 million candlepower. But I did include one monster in case super-powered lighting is your jam!

Be sure to read the buyer’s guide and frequently asked questions for helpful tips. Also, have a look at our comparison chart to help steer your decision-making.



  • Max lumens 2,800
  • Max beam distance 1,247 ft. (380 m)
  • Max runtime 42 hrs.
  • Lighting modes Five brightness levels and strobe
  • Battery Included 21700 rechargeable li-ion battery
  • Bulb type Luminus SFT70 LED
  • Color temperature Around 6,500K
  • Size Length: 5.74” (145.8mm), head: 1.04” (26.5mm), body: 1.01” (25.7mm)
  • Weight 5.96 oz. (169g) including battery


  • Powerful, uniform 2,800-lumen beam
  • USB-C charging
  • Long battery life
  • Great user interface


The Fenix PD36R Pro is the latest evolution of our favorite overall flashlight on the market. A slightly upgraded model of the also-great PD36R, the PD36R Pro has one big difference that is better, and that is the dual tail switches. The system works like this: One larger tail switch turns the light on and off. The other toggles through the five brightness modes, or, if the light is off, activates the strobe function for self-defense. In the dark, with gloves, or whenever, it’s incredibly easy to manipulate the switches and get the output you want in seconds.

If you prefer the lighting control mounted on the body of the light, the standard PD36R is still available. But I suspect most users will love the upgraded PRO model.

Beyond user experience, the runtime is phenomenal. With the new PD36R PRO in Eco (30 lumens) mode, you can achieve a solid 42 hours of runtime. If runtime is your primary concern, the non-PRO version of this light has a much longer runtime, but lower overall output.

For casual users (occasional camping trips and short bursts of high-output modes), that should amount to months between charges. Our tester has gone more than 2 months without recharging the PD36R PRO with regular usage.

Speaking of modes, the PD36R PRO ranges from a low-end 30 lumens up to a searingly bright 2,800 lumens. At that 2,800-lumen turbo mode, you can easily see objects at 1,247 feet. That’s more than enough for most use cases for recreation in the outdoors. And impressively, the PD36R PRO can maintain that brightness for 3.5 hours.

With an IP68 waterproof rating, it can withstand being underwater up to 6.5 feet for 30 minutes. It’s also dustproof and shock-resistant. One feature I love is how you can easily manipulate between tactical (and strobe-enabling) functions.

Beyond the specs, this is a perfect hand-size flashlight (5.74 inches long, 1.04 inches in diameter) with user-friendly functions. Turn it on and off at the large tail switch, press the smaller tail switch to adjust power, and check the LED near the USB-C charging port when turning the light on for a battery-level indication.

Overall, I think the PD36R PRO is the best flashlight on the market today.

ThruNite Archer 2A V3 Cool White


  • Max lumens 500
  • Max beam distance 93 m
  • Max runtime 51 hrs. (low), 15 days firefly mode
  • Lighting modes Four plus strobe
  • Battery Two AA
  • Bulb type CREE XP-L2 LED
  • Dimensions Length: 6.1, width: 0.86
  • Weight 1.69 oz. (48 g)


  • Long battery life
  • Small and light
  • Enough power for indoor or close outdoor use
  • Affordable


While the ThruNite Archer (30) lacks a few of the higher-end features of other lights on this list, it comes in at an absolutely excellent price of just 30. For that, you get a quality CREE XP-L V6 LED light source with a maximum power of 500 lumens. While that number may not look impressive, it’s way more than enough for most uses. Using two AA batteries, it has a runtime of up to 4 days on firefly mode and 11 hours on medium (75 lumens).

You heard that right — this flashlight does use AA batteries. That certainly brings down the price compared with high-end rechargeables and costs money to operate. Our team prefers rechargeable flashlights for several reasons we’ll get into below. But flashlights with disposable (or rechargeable) AA batteries are very easy to repower on backcountry trips — just bring a couple of extras.

At 30, the ThruNite Archer has earned a remarkable 4.5 stars with more than 1,800 ratings on Amazon. It’s worth noting that previous versions of this article did list even cheaper flashlights. But after significant testing, I found those very cheap lights simply did not perform up to our minimum standards. The ThruNite Archer, while still affordable, definitely meets the criteria of durability, a useful beam, and ease of use while still being easy on the wallet.

best, battery, cell, portable, chargers, comparing



  • Max lumens 3,000
  • Max beam distance 220 m
  • Max runtime 37 hrs.
  • Lighting modes Five brightness levels and strobe
  • Battery Built-in li-ion battery
  • Bulb type 2x Luminus SST40 LED
  • Dimensions Length: 135.6 mm (5.34), width: 31.4 mm (1.24)
  • Weight 4.37 oz. including battery


  • Slim design with clip
  • OLED screen displays remaining time, output
  • 3,000-lumen output
  • Long throw
  • Long battery life


A new addition to the best flashlights of 2023, the NITECORE EDC27 first launched at SHOT Show 2023. This light dazzled folks with a wonderful design and massive light output. If you can get your hands on one (it’s still selling out quickly with every batch produced), this light is the latest and greatest EDC flashlight on the market. I expect it to be popular for a long time.

Let’s begin with the design. The NITECORE EDC27 is a flat flashlight with a clip. That means it fits easily in your It will even work in most knife s on pants, making it a dream to carry. To turn it on, press a large tail switch. Next to that switch is a smaller tail switch. Once on, depress that smaller switch to flip between modes. Or, you can press the smaller tail switch when the light is off to fire the strobe or momentary on modes. For the EDC user who may need to use the light for self-defense, this is a slick interface that should result in never hitting the wrong button for the needed use.

Next, a quick look at the specs reveals class-leading numbers. A top output of 3,000 lumens and a 200m range will serve all but the most dire search and rescue, hunting, or tactical needs. And a run time of 37 hours on low provides a good, long life for the vast majority of uses.

Finally, the light has an easy-to-read OLED display. It reads run time and current lumen output. This takes the guesswork out of recharging the battery and lets the user know exactly what they can expect the light to do.

Overall, the EDC27 is an incredible new flashlight. I haven’t had enough time testing it to say it will outperform our current top pick, but it certainly should give Fenix a run for its money.

NITECORE P20iX 4000 Lumen USB-C Rechargeable Tactical Flashlight


  • Max lumens 4,000
  • Max beam distance 241 yds.
  • Max runtime 350 hrs.
  • Lighting modes Six plus strobe
  • Battery Nitecore 21700 i Series (other options available)
  • Bulb type 4 x CREE XP-L2 V6 LEDs
  • Dimensions Length: 5.57, height; 1.25
  • Weight 4.09 oz.


  • Very powerful
  • Operates on various battery types
  • Extremely long runtime
  • USB-C Rechargeable


NITECORE discontinued one of our previous favorites (the i4000R) but replaced it with an even better, more powerful torch. A strong contender for the best overall flashlight, the new NITECORE P20IX (120) is one of the best flashlights on the market in terms of overall performance.

It’s slightly larger than our 2021 winner from Fenix, however, so it’s less suitable for hikers, hunters, or others who value light weight and small size.

best, battery, cell, portable, chargers, comparing

That said, the new version shaves half an ounce and half an inch off the previous model, coming in at 4.06 ounces and 5.57 inches long. So it’s edging closer and closer to a.friendly size.

The i4000R punches through the darkness with 4,000 lumens on turbo mode for up to 30 minutes. That’s enough to light up objects 250 yards away, so it should be high on your list for performance alone. importantly, it has four continuous and strobe modes, ranging all the way down to the 2-lumen ultralow mode that provides light for up to 350 hours.

It runs on a rechargeable battery that powers four CREE XP-L2 V6 LEDs. This setup provides exceptional versatility for everyone from campers and hunters to search-and-rescue and tactical uses. The user interface is great, providing easy access to toggle between modes (like its turbo output and strobe mode) through a dedicated button separate from the rear tail switch.

While this is a high-end flashlight, it’s absolutely worth the price for those who need a powerful, reliable flashlight with the potential to hold up to extremes.

Olight Warrior X Pro


  • Max lumens 2,250
  • Max beam distance 500 m
  • Max runtime 8 hrs.
  • Lighting modes 2
  • Battery 5,000mAh 21700 battery
  • Bulb type High-performance neutral white LED
  • Dimensions Length: 5.87, width: 1.03
  • Weight 8.43 oz.


  • Magnetic charging requires special cable
  • No low-power mode
  • Narrow beam hard to use at close range

With a maximum output of 2,250 lumens (and the ability to project it a whopping 500 m), the Warrior X Pro (120) packs a heck of a punch. For most people, that level of output is overkill. But for those who need to sweep large expanses of nighttime terrain (like search-and-rescue personnel), this kind of power can come in handy.

Those are pretty wild specs for a flashlight that weighs just 8.43 ounces and measures less than 6 inches in length. It runs on a 5,000mAh rechargeable battery. You can recharge it anywhere you have a 12-volt USB outlet or recharger. It comes in three additional colors.

While the Olight Warrior X Pro does give you excellent high-power performance, it’s weaker in the runtime category. That’s because its lowest power output is 300 lumens — more power than you usually need around a campsite. So for people looking for better runtime with lower outputs, there are better choices.

For search and rescue personnel, or anyone who needs a reliable tactical flashlight for nighttime scanning, however, this is one of the best flashlights you can buy.

LEDLENSER MT10 Flashlight


The Ledlenser MT10 rechargeable flashlight (90) competes well with the Fenix above, and on paper, it in some ways outshines the competition. The specs put these two top flashlight choices in similar categories, and I expect users will love them both.

One thing I love about the MT10 over the Fenix PD36R is the Ledlenser Advanced Focus System. This simply means you can adjust between a broad floodlight and a long-distance beam in an instant. Simply press the front bezel forward, and the light focuses tighter and tighter.

It works extremely well in the field. We’ve used it to find our way out of the woods while bushwhacking during elk hunts in the Rocky Mountains and appreciated the ability to scan far hillsides for trails and landmarks with the max 1,000 lumens and 180 m of throw.

The Ledlenser MT10 also gives a great useable low light, running up to 144 hours at 10 lumens. It has a mid-power setting, but the brand doesn’t share specs on it. But at its middle setting, you get nice light for hiking and good runtime. I’ve only charged this flashlight twice in about a year of testing.

Speaking of charging, this light charges off a micro-USB cable. I love that fact, as it’s a common size and doesn’t require you to carry an oddball cable on trips.

Overall, the MT10 is one of the best flashlights you can buy, with most of the features an outdoor user will require. It’s reasonably priced as well, given its strong power and battery. I also appreciate its simple user interface.

The only ding against this compared with the more expensive Fenix is the build feels a little less robust (it’s IP54-rated for dust and water splashes and rain but is not fully waterproof). I also liked the color rendering a bit better on the Fenix. But the Ledlenser MT10 puts up a great fight.

Blackfire Rechargeable Weatherproof Magnetic Flashlight With Lantern


  • Max lumens 500
  • Max beam distance N/A
  • Max runtime 30 hrs.
  • Lighting modes Four, plus lantern
  • Battery Rechargeable lithium-ion
  • Bulb type LED
  • Dimensions Length: 5.5, width: 1.5
  • Weight 6.9 oz.


Blackfire, a newer division of Klein Tools, is making some nice flashlights these days. Overall, the BBM6412 is an excellent upgrade to our previous top flashlight for mechanics.

At around the 40 range, this light packs in a ton of performance that makes it fit for both the garage and the wilderness. It has a top output of 500 lumens — while not super powerful, that’s certainly sufficient for use on the trail and around the campsite. And it’s more than enough power when working under the hood of your truck.

Where it really stands out is its magnetic base and side-throw lantern. This work light illuminates a larger area with soft, useful light at five brightness settings. In our testing, it was the perfect companion while checking for loose wires under the hood of a truck in the dark. And it’s capable of big tasks, too. It’ll kick out 375 lumens for 10 hours in work light mode or 500 lumens for 7 hours in standard mode.

Our testers also loved the simple, common USB-C connection for fast recharging and the multicolor battery level indicator. Top it off with a glow-in-the-dark bezel that makes it easy to find in a center console in the dark, and you’re looking at a lot of flashlight for not much money.

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Flashlights Comparison Chart

FlashlightPriceMax Output (Lumens)Max Beam DistanceBattery TypeWeight
Fenix PD36R PRO 120 2,800 1,247 ft. (380 m) Included 21700 rechargeableli-ion battery 5.96 oz. including battery
ThruNite Archer 2A V3 Cool White 30 500 93 m 2 x AA 1.69 oz.
NITECORE EDC27 90 3,000 220 m Built-in li-ion battery 4.37 oz. including battery
Nitecore P20iX 4000 Lumen USB-C Rechargeable Tactical Flashlight 120 4,000 241 yds. Nitecore 21700 i Series 4.09 oz.
Olight Warrior X Pro 120 2,250 500 m 5,000mAh 21700 battery 8.43 oz.
LEDLENSER MT10 Flashlight 90 1,000 180 m Rechargeable lithium-ion 5.5 oz.
Blackfire Rechargeable Weatherproof Magnetic Flashlight With Lantern 42 500 N/A Rechargeable lithium-Ion 6.9 oz.

Why You Should Trust Us

In short, our primary flashlight testers are not just super into the outdoors; they’re also flashlight nerds. We really love the technology that goes into flashlights and headlamps. As the author of this article, I personally spend hours every month testing the newest flashlights to see if they can outperform our favorites listed here.

For the record, it takes a long time and impressive performance for a flashlight to earn a spot in this article. I constantly test new flashlights and updates from our favorite brands and update this article many times each year to keep it up to date with the best flashlights available.

Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose a Flashlight

There are a few important specs to consider when choosing a flashlight: size and weight, max power output (usually noted in lumens), minimum power output, runtime (especially in lower modes), durability, and waterproofness.

Before we get into some of those details, I’d like to share some details about how I chose flashlights to test for this article. And there have been a lot of them.

First, I look for flashlights that work well for both home and outdoor use. This means I look for higher output than flashlights intended primarily for indoor use. I also only include flashlights that can function after at least a 1m drop, are water-resistant, and have a max runtime of at least 8 hours — enough to get you through a summer night at a minimum.

Next comes the question of batteries. Because of the efficiency of modern flashlights, there are now just two real choices: flashlights that run on AA or AAA batteries, or rechargeable flashlights that run off one of many higher-end battery systems and are almost always included in the light. Gone are the days of giant D-cell flashlights. But there is still a significant argument between those who believe disposable batteries or rechargeable batteries are better. I will get into it more below, but our team likes rechargeable batteries more in most cases.

Lumens: Max Output

For most campers, anything over 1,000 lumens is overkill. You’ll often find yourself using much lower settings, especially around camp. However, those big numbers can be nice, especially if you need to see faraway objects.

Battery Life

Another important consideration is if the flashlight uses its own rechargeable battery or if it runs on disposable batteries. Most people will get more value out of a flashlight that offers long runtimes and is easy to recharge.

Battery Type

As noted above, our team prefers rechargeable batteries in most situations. Most rechargeable batteries, such as the 21700 rechargeable li-ion battery included in the Fenix PD36R PRO, offer superior performance to both disposable and rechargeable AA or AAA batteries. But more importantly, flashlights that include this type of high-end rechargeable battery do not have hidden costs. And for those who will use a battery more than casually will find that the cost of batteries will very quickly add up to more than the cost of the flashlight.

Next, rechargeable flashlights generally have a charging port or system built in. As you can see with our choices, our favorite flashlights today use USB-C charging. This is quickly becoming the industry standard as it is much faster than micro-USB charging. And unlike magnetic charging systems (or other proprietary chargers), you can easily find a USB-C cable anywhere and likely own several already.

One final note on AA and AAA batteries. Some folks argue that it is easier to replace batteries in the field than to charge them. Our testers have carried small battery chargers on many adventures, and they work great with flashlights for long trips. For trips over a week or two in length, though, disposable batteries still have an edge.

So keep battery and charging style in mind when you buy a flashlight. It will make a difference when you’re packing for a trip as to how many cables you’ll need to bring, or if you’ll need to buy batteries continually through the life of the product.

However, it’s convenient to quickly change batteries and refresh your flashlight in the field. Both are valid options, but consider how you’ll use the light (and if you mind constantly buying new batteries).

Quality and Output

Modern LED flashlights vary in the quality of their color rendering, meaning you can see color better with some higher-end lights. The best flashlights on the market should always give you a colorized, realistic view.

Better-quality lights also tend to have more efficient LEDs. Some even have “regulators” that electronically manage the power output, resulting in consistent lighting. To expand on that, first understand that most flashlights, even very good ones, lose a little output as they run and deplete the battery. Better flashlights use a regulator to manage this drop-off. Poor flashlights tend to lose power consistently over time, gradually becoming less and less useful as the battery slowly drains.


A lumen is the basic unit of measurement for how bright a light is. The brighter the light, the more lumens it produces. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines a lumen as “a unit of luminous flux equal to the light emitted in a unit solid angle by a uniform point source of one candle intensity.” For the layperson, a one-lumen flashlight is barely enough to read a typical book at a normal reading distance from the face, or the amount of light of one birthday candle one foot away.

Yes, LED flashlights do get warm if they’re pushed hard enough. For many flashlights, this is a sign the heat sink is working, moving heat away from the delicate electronics inside.

The highest-lumen flashlight currently on the market is the Imalent MS18, which claims a jaw-dropping 100,000 lumens. However, many huge claims like this are questionable. The brightest flashlight I have tested is the Fenix LR50R. It blasts out a verifiable 12,000 lumens and lights objects clearly up to 950 yards away!

EDC is an acronym for “everyday carry.” It refers to the items that you carry around with you on an ongoing basis.

As a philosophy, EDC is built on utility and being prepared for anything. In this case, it represents a flashlight you carry every day with you in case you ever need light in a dark environment.

First and foremost, you’ll want a small flashlight that’ll fit in your. clip to your belt, or fit in your daypack. After that, look for a flashlight with good brightness, long battery life, and easy operation.

1,000 to 2,000 lumens is plenty bright for an EDC. That should give you enough juice to see objects 200 to 300 yards away. Our top choice for everyday carry is the Nitecore EDC27.

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Sean McCoy is the Editorial Director of GearJunkie, and 5 other All Gear websites.

He has been writing about hunting, fishing, trail running, camping, skiing, and more for 15 years.

Prior to GearJunkie, he was the chief photographer for the Virgin Islands Daily News and former Editor In Chief for GearJunkie. Based in Denver, Colorado, McCoy is an avid trail runner, camper, hunter, angler, mountain biker, skier, and beer tester.

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