Equipment Review: Fenix TK40

16 Sep

I can imagine the stories that our ancestors would’ve devised were we able to send a Fenix TK40 back in time to then: They might tell of some mighty hero who journeyed up into the sky and harvested the sun, banishing it into a metal rod.

But, let’s face it: that’s still the best explanation of how the Fenix TK40 is so bright.

This is my “big gun” that I have used extensively on every field trip I’ve been on since buying it about a year and a half ago. It’s very useful for hiking, road cruising and what not, and I use it pretty often to spotlight mammals from the car while doing field work: it’s just as bright as a car headlight on turbo (highest) power. I’d keep on going, but I think my TK40 would start blushing, so let’s get on to the scoring section:

Overall brightness – 9.5/10

I only let the light be downgraded a half a point because Fenix now has a couple of other similar sized lights with more lumens (like the TK45); but only slightly more so. If I get my hands on any of these other lights, I’ll be sure to review them, but the TK40 is excellent. As I’ve stated, it’s every bit as bright as my car headlights on turbo, and the longer-lasting medium and high settings are still uncannily bright. And for you who aren’t lumen-addicts, the low setting is nice and unobtrusive.

Width of Beam – 7/10

A nice beam width, but it is not adjustable so I took off a couple of points. That said, it is a good width for pretty much any use, but a an ability to switch from a flood to a spot would be nice.

Throw – 9/10

If your beam is not wide enough for you, you can just back up a half a mile. Seriously, this light has some nice throw to it; you’re more likely to have problems with your vision in seeing an object far away than having an issue with shedding enough light on it.

Water/Light Penetration –8/10

I frequently spotlight culverts, ponds and the ilk with the TK40. No issues.

Battery – 10/10 

Just like I said with the HP10, you absolutely cannot beat AA’s – they’re available everywhere, people usually carry spares, and will inevitably be on the forward end of new battery technology and upgrades for the foreseeable future. The TK40 takes 8 AAs, and according to Fenix, the modes/battery life are as follows: Turbo – 630 Lumens, 2 Hour.  Low – 13 Lumens, 150 Hours, Medium – 93 Lumens, 20 Hours, High – 277 Lumens, 6.8 Hours. I’ve never specifically tested that, but let’s just say I’ve been out some long nights and have never had a Fenix go dead on me.

Size – 8/10 

Not a bad size at all – It fits comfortably (though slightly awkwardly) into a pocket if needed. I attached a carabineer to mine to be able to tote it on a belt loop.

Price – 6/10

When I bought it, it was expensive ($120) and it hasn’t come down too too much since then (around $100 now). But if you’ve got the money for one, it is well worth it – and it’s really not that unreasonable considering the prices for far inferior lights at sporting goods stores.

Dependability – 8/10

As with my HP10, my first TK40 worked for a while (a couple of months) then promptly crapped out. But as with the HP10, Fenix replaced the light and I’ve had my current TK40 for a couple of years with no issues.

Ruggedness – 8/10

I’ve dropped the TK40 plenty with no problems; the only issue with ruggedness I’ve had is the propensity for grit to get stuck in the threading on the butt of the light. That said, it still threads for me without issue.

Other – 10/10

An awesome light. What more can I say?

Overall – 83.5

Like Fenix’s other lights, this is a superb light and I would not (nor have I) hestitate(d) for a second to recommend them to someone. When I get out in the field, I want a TK40 lighting the way.


Posted by on 16/09/2011 in Equipment Reviews


2 responses to “Equipment Review: Fenix TK40

  1. Center for Snake Conservation

    16/09/2011 at 5:34 pm

    Added to my christmas list!


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