Sofirn C8G Panga rechargeable tactical LED flashlight – 2,000 lumens, 635 metres. State-of-the-art! Customer reviews (lots!)The tactical torch must be the most highly contested category in the flashlight world. If you have 100 torch enthusiasts in a (darkened) room you’ll get 100 opinions of what defines a tactical flashlight, along with a fair bit of… retinal retribution (blinding each other!)However most of them would agree that a tactical torch must be:- compact and light enough for a uniformed officer to carry all the time- capable of being turned on and off at full power from a tail-switch, which is easy to find in the dark and essential if you’re holding the torch alongside a hand-gun- exceptionally powerful, with a perfect hot-spot-and-spill beam profile for maximum throw, while still being able to spot movement and shapes “out of the corner of your eye”- rechargeable, with enough juice in the battery for an entire night-shift of on/off use at full power, and continuous use at lower output levels at a crime- or accident-scene- robust enough to survive years of hard use in difficult conditions.Of course these qualities are also perfect for those of us who need a powerful and durable torch to investigate “bumps in the night”, take part in neighbourhood watch patrols or night-drives at the game reserve, or light up the lounge during loadshedding.Sofirn’s C8G ticks all these boxes and then some! I’m calling it the “Panga” because it’s the most versatile blade in the toolbox – I’ve seen pangas used not just for cutting sugar-cane and firewood but also as a meat-cleaver and a terrifying weapon.Sofirn’s Panga extends the state-of-the-art in two directions – the performance is the best I’ve seen from a tactical torch, while the value it delivers is truly remarkable!To cover these qualities will take more words than most of my product description, so you may want to grab a beverage and a comfortable spot. If you don’t have the time, the bottom line is… if you’re looking for a compact security torch, you will not get more bang for your bucks – finish en klaar!Starting with performance, the Panga not only whacks out 2,000 lumens but, more importantly, almost 100,000 candela. Lumens tell us how “fat” the beam is, candela decide how far it will shine (see here for more). I’ve never before seen a tactical torch that throws a fat neutral-white hot-spot over 600 metres using the same formula as other torch makers (about two rugby fields, end to end, in the real-world) or do it for so long!This is benchmark stuff.Any 2,000-lumen LED produces a lot of heat at full power, and compact torches aren’t big enough to dissipate this heat indefinitely, so the Panga turns itself down from “turbo” to “high” after about six minutes… according to Sofirn. However the Panga uses an “advanced temperature control” system so that, with some air movement around the torch, it will run much longer. And when it does finally step down the difference is hard to spot – sitting at my desk with a stopwatch I couldn’t see it. In short, if I didn’t tell you that the Panga steps down, you’d probably never know.The 1,000 lumen "high" setting looks nearly as bright as "turbo" – with a high-capacity 5,000mAh rechargeable lithium ion (Li-Ion) battery I get around three hours of continuous runtime at this level before it steps down to preserve the battery (you can still go back to high or turbo if you want). Incidentally it features "constant current" technology, which means the Panga doesn't get dimmer as the battery runs down.At the other end of the scale, the Panga delivers a 300 lumen “medium” beam all night, a 75 lumen “low” for more than three nights in a row, and a 10-lumen “eco” mode which will run every night for a couple of weeks. In short, it’s highly unlikely you’ll flatten your battery during a night-shift or NW patrol unless you forget to charge it. And even if you do, the Panga will warn you when you turn it on by showing a red light behind the side-switch instead of the comforting green, telling you to use your spare battery (you DO have a spare, right?) while you charge this battery (including in your vehicle, if you're using one of my extraordinary Liitokala chargers).Then let’s talk about features and value. In terms of fit, finish, materials and construction, this torch is absolutely out of the top drawer. It has the look and feel of a high-end Japanese camera – the tactile feedback from the switches is just right and the electronics are the product of close attention to customer feedback and years of experience.Unlike many tactical torches, the Panga can tail-stand on a flat surface, so you can bounce the beam off the ceiling to light up a room during loadshedding, and it won’t roll off a table when its on its side (unless pushed!) The bezel around the lens is scalloped so that, if you stand it on its nose, you can see if the light is turned on. They're all small things that make a big difference!The user-interface is deceptively simple. Turn it on at the tailcap and adjust the brightness with the side switch. When you turn it off and on again it will return to the last-used brightness level (low, medium or high). A double click of the side switch brings up "turbo", another double click goes to "eco" (moonlight), while a triple click gives you a dual-frequency defensive strobe.However, if you do four quick clicks of the side-switch an interesting thing happens – you change “groups”. While the default group offers you low, medium and high, the “ramping” group allows you to smoothly ramp the brightness from eco to turbo in about four seconds. When you release the button the torch remembers that level, so you can click off and on all night at your preferred output, but you still have instant access to turbo with a double-click of the button.When you remove the tailcap to change the battery you’ll find rubber o-rings to keep the torch IPX8 waterproof/submersible (there are spares in the box) and flawless square-cut anodised threads, so a twist of the wrist will “lock out” the switches to avoid accidental activation when the torch is packed away.One of the Panga’s best features is that it can be powered by either a high-capacity 21700 Li-Ion or the more common 18650 size (with reduced runtimes). A reminder that these numbers refer to the size of the battery – a 21700 is (about) 21mm in diameter and 70mm long. Both sizes are industry standard, so they are easy to replace when the time comes. Note that the 21700 format is relatively new and is appearing in many new torches because it holds much more energy than the 18650 size. The 21700 does NOT fit into most older chargers but my Liitokala Lii-402+ is designed to take them, along with all the other sizes and chemistries (including rechargeable AA and AAA batteries).With this torch, Sofirn have resisted the trend toward internal charging, which is not suited to professional use. Charging a battery inside a torch means it’s out of service while it's charging, and a charging port can make a torch vulnerable to water damage and rough handling by staff. External charging, in a charger, is more practical for those who own more than one battery – they can charge one (including in a vehicle) while using the other, or carry a charged spare in their pocket for longer outings.In summary, the C8G Panga is a masterclass in flashlight design and function, milled from aerospace-grade aluminium with military-grade anodising, gold-plated contacts etc.) and equipped with the best electronics (advanced temperature control, regulated output, reverse polarity protection etc).It kinda reminds me of Freddy Mercury singing “I want it all… and I want it NOW.”Please note that I’m charged a commission if you “check out” the Panga here on my website, but if you pay by EFT into our account I'll pay that commission (and a bit more!) back to you in the form of a discount – just drop me a line at mark@torchguy.com and I’ll make it happen.

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C8G Panga

R1,790.00

Sofirn C8G Panga rechargeable tactical LED flashlight – 2,000 lumens, 635 metres. State-of-the-art! Customer reviews (lots!)

The tactical torch must be the most highly contested category in the flashlight world. If you have 100 torch enthusiasts in a (darkened) room you’ll get 100 opinions of what defines a tactical flashlight, along with a fair bit of… retinal retribution (blinding each other!)

However most of them would agree that a tactical torch must be:

- compact and light enough for a uniformed officer to carry all the time

- capable of being turned on and off at full power from a tail-switch, which is easy to find in the dark and essential if you’re holding the torch alongside a hand-gun

- exceptionally powerful, with a perfect hot-spot-and-spill beam profile for maximum throw, while still being able to spot movement and shapes “out of the corner of your eye”

- rechargeable, with enough juice in the battery for an entire night-shift of on/off use at full power, and continuous use at lower output levels at a crime- or accident-scene

- robust enough to survive years of hard use in difficult conditions.

Of course these qualities are also perfect for those of us who need a powerful and durable torch to investigate “bumps in the night”, take part in neighbourhood watch patrols or night-drives at the game reserve, or light up the lounge during loadshedding.

Sofirn’s C8G ticks all these boxes and then some! I’m calling it the “Panga” because it’s the most versatile blade in the toolbox – I’ve seen pangas used not just for cutting sugar-cane and firewood but also as a meat-cleaver and a terrifying weapon.

Sofirn’s Panga extends the state-of-the-art in two directions – the performance is the best I’ve seen from a tactical torch, while the value it delivers is truly remarkable!

To cover these qualities will take more words than most of my product description, so you may want to grab a beverage and a comfortable spot. If you don’t have the time, the bottom line is… if you’re looking for a compact security torch, you will not get more bang for your bucks – finish en klaar!

Starting with performance, the Panga not only whacks out 2,000 lumens but, more importantly, almost 100,000 candela. Lumens tell us how “fat” the beam is, candela decide how far it will shine (see here for more). I’ve never before seen a tactical torch that throws a fat neutral-white hot-spot over 600 metres using the same formula as other torch makers (about two rugby fields, end to end, in the real-world) or do it for so long!

This is benchmark stuff.

Any 2,000-lumen LED produces a lot of heat at full power, and compact torches aren’t big enough to dissipate this heat indefinitely, so the Panga turns itself down from “turbo” to “high” after about six minutes… according to Sofirn. However the Panga uses an “advanced temperature control” system so that, with some air movement around the torch, it will run much longer. 

And when it does finally step down the difference is hard to spot – sitting at my desk with a stopwatch I couldn’t see it. In short, if I didn’t tell you that the Panga steps down, you’d probably never know.

The 1,000 lumen "high" setting looks nearly as bright as "turbo" – with a high-capacity 5,000mAh rechargeable lithium ion (Li-Ion) battery I get around three hours of continuous runtime at this level before it steps down to preserve the battery (you can still go back to high or turbo if you want). Incidentally it features "constant current" technology, which means the Panga doesn't get dimmer as the battery runs down.

At the other end of the scale, the Panga delivers a 300 lumen “medium” beam all night, a 75 lumen “low” for more than three nights in a row, and a 10-lumen “eco” mode which will run every night for a couple of weeks. 

In short, it’s highly unlikely you’ll flatten your battery during a night-shift or NW patrol unless you forget to charge it. And even if you do, the Panga will warn you when you turn it on by showing a red light behind the side-switch instead of the comforting green, telling you to use your spare battery (you DO have a spare, right?) while you charge this battery (including in your vehicle, if you're using one of my extraordinary Liitokala chargers).

Then let’s talk about features and value. In terms of fit, finish, materials and construction, this torch is absolutely out of the top drawer. It has the look and feel of a high-end Japanese camera – the tactile feedback from the switches is just right and the electronics are the product of close attention to customer feedback and years of experience.

Unlike many tactical torches, the Panga can tail-stand on a flat surface, so you can bounce the beam off the ceiling to light up a room during loadshedding, and it won’t roll off a table when its on its side (unless pushed!) The bezel around the lens is scalloped so that, if you stand it on its nose, you can see if the light is turned on. They're all small things that make a big difference!

The user-interface is deceptively simple. Turn it on at the tailcap and adjust the brightness with the side switch. When you turn it off and on again it will return to the last-used brightness level (low, medium or high). A double click of the side switch brings up "turbo", another double click goes to "eco" (moonlight), while a triple click gives you a dual-frequency defensive strobe.

However, if you do four quick clicks of the side-switch an interesting thing happens – you change “groups”. While the default group offers you low, medium and high, the “ramping” group allows you to smoothly ramp the brightness from eco to turbo in about four seconds. When you release the button the torch remembers that level, so you can click off and on all night at your preferred output, but you still have instant access to turbo with a double-click of the button.

When you remove the tailcap to change the battery you’ll find rubber o-rings to keep the torch IPX8 waterproof/submersible (there are spares in the box) and flawless square-cut anodised threads, so a twist of the wrist will “lock out” the switches to avoid accidental activation when the torch is packed away.

One of the Panga’s best features is that it can be powered by either a high-capacity 21700 Li-Ion or the more common 18650 size (with reduced runtimes). A reminder that these numbers refer to the size of the battery – a 21700 is (about) 21mm in diameter and 70mm long. Both sizes are industry standard, so they are easy to replace when the time comes. 

Note that the 21700 format is relatively new and is appearing in many new torches because it holds much more energy than the 18650 size. The 21700 does NOT fit into most older chargers but my Liitokala Lii-402+ is designed to take them, along with all the other sizes and chemistries (including rechargeable AA and AAA batteries).

With this torch, Sofirn have resisted the trend toward internal charging, which is not suited to professional use. Charging a battery inside a torch means it’s out of service while it's charging, and a charging port can make a torch vulnerable to water damage and rough handling by staff. External charging, in a charger, is more practical for those who own more than one battery – they can charge one (including in a vehicle) while using the other, or carry a charged spare in their pocket for longer outings.

In summary, the C8G Panga is a masterclass in flashlight design and function, milled from aerospace-grade aluminium with military-grade anodising, gold-plated contacts etc.) and equipped with the best electronics (advanced temperature control, regulated output, reverse polarity protection etc).

It kinda reminds me of Freddy Mercury singing “I want it all… and I want it NOW.”

Please note that I’m charged a commission if you “check out” the Panga here on my website, but if you pay by EFT into our account I'll pay that commission (and a bit more!) back to you in the form of a discount – just drop me a line at mark@torchguy.com and I’ll make it happen.

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