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REVIEW: The Fenix PD36R Flashlight (Simple, Handy & Looong-Lasting)

Having a handy flashlight with you during a dark situation just makes all the difference. If you’re like me, “handy” might be hard to look for when there are so many on the market. So, what makes a flashlight stand out from the others?

If you’re someone who hates frequent charging time and complicated interfaces, we’re in the same boat. Fortunately, the Fenix PD36R was a great find. Imagine all the time and effort it saved me not to look for outlets and chargers.

In-Depth Review

To give you a comprehensive look at the PD36R, I’ve listed some of its features that really stood out for me (plus the cons that you should know).

What Comes With the Fenix PD36R?

The PD36R comes in a small box with Fenix’s black and orange trademark color when you purchase it. The package includes the flashlight itself and a comprehensive manual written in different languages. It also has a warranty card in case the product has a defect.

As it is a 21700 flashlight, it comes with a battery that can supply 5000mAh at best. You can charge the flashlight with the USB Type C cable. However, the package does not come with an adapter. Still, you can plug it directly into your laptop or computer.

As for freebies, you’ll also get a nylon pouch, two-way pocket clip, holster, and a lanyard. With these accessories, you can carry the Fenix PD36R with you in whatever style you want. Lastly, it has a spare o-ring and a switch boot in case the original one gets damaged.

Is the Fenix PD36R light and handy?

This tactical flashlight is VERY light and handy. It is 5.35 inches long and has a 1.1-inch head diameter, just big enough to fit into your pocket and grasp with your hands. The PD36R is also lightweight as it is 162.9g (5.75oz) even with the battery. It’s so light; you’ll forget it’s even there.

Build Quality

The Fenix PD36R is very well-built. This 21700 flashlight is made from sturdy aluminum with a hard-anodized finish that is also anti-abrasive. However, it has a bit of shininess to it making it look somewhat cheap. Nonetheless, it doesn’t deter this flashlight’s quality.

What makes the flashlight stand out is the textured exterior which allows you to grip it easily. Moreover, it has an IP68 waterproof rating and can handle a 5-foot drop.

Fenix PD36R Performance

The Fenix PD36R is a fantastic tactical and EDC flashlight. Here are some of the performance features of this LED light:

Battery Life and Runtime

The flashlight is rechargeable. However, it does not indicate the charging time. This 21700 flashlight can run for hours, depending on the light mode you pick.

Modes

PD36R has six different outputs: Turbo, High, Med, Low, Eco, and Strobe. You can switch between the modes with the side switch. Moreover, the Strobe mode meets the USCG’s nighttime signaling requirements.


Turbo2.9 hours
High5.9 hours
Med 8.5 hours
Low 26 hours
Eco 115 hours

A time table of the Fenix PD36R using different light modes

As an added feature, the flashlight has a side switch that alerts you of its battery life:


Solid green100% to 85%
Flashing green85% to 50%
Solid red 50% to 25%
Flashing red25% to 1%

How to tell the battery life of the Fenix PD36R

Light output and beam distance

There are a lot of tactical flashlights that pack a punch when it comes to light output. The Fenix PD36R has a smooth reflector, making it have a more focused beam. Moreover, this EDC Flashlight has a Luminus SST-40 emitter. Here’s the lumen amount and beam distance for each mode:


Turbo1600 Lumens with 928 feet beam distance
High800 Lumens with 646 feet beam distance
Med350 Lumens with 419 feet beam distance
Low150 Lumens with 269 feet beam distance
Eco30 Lumens with 114 feet beam distance
Strobe 1600 Lumens

The lumens and feet beam distance of the Fenix PD36R when using different modes

User Interface

The PD36R’s user interface is a no-brainer. You can efficiently operate this tactical flashlight with only one hand.

It has a dual switch operation. The rear part has a tactical tail switch that turns the light on when half-pressed. When you push the button, it will turn the light on and off. The other control is found at the side, where you can toggle from one mode to another. For the Strobe mode, you need to hold down the side switch to access it.

Short Review

Here’s a quick overview of the points that I tackled in the in-depth review.

Pros

  • Textured exterior for easy grip.
  • It is portable and lightweight.
  • It has various accessories that come with it.
  • It has a battery life indicator.
  • It has 1600 Lumens.
  • It has 115 Hours runtime on the lowest setting.
  • It has 928 feet of beam throw.
  • It has a straightforward user interface.

Cons

  • It does not have an adapter.
  • The external surface is a bit shiny.
  • There is no indication of the charging time.

Price

At $99.95, the price isn’t a joke. After endlessly scanning through flashlights at $15 to $150 on Amazon, you could say this one falls in the midrange. Break the budget a bit, and you’ll get the Fenix PD36R that won’t let you down.

Why should you buy it?

If you’re looking for the best brand and model for a tactical and EDC flashlight, I recommend the Fenix PD36R. It has its downsides like any other flashlight, but it has more pros than cons. You can visit the Fenix Store to check out the PD36R and other amazing flashlights.

The Verdict

Many brands claim that they have the best tactical-style EDC flashlight, but this one is the real deal. For me, it's the perfect one out there because it’s durable, lightweight, and gives excellent luminosity. If you’re into camping, night hiking, and hunting, the Fenix PD36R should be on the top of your list.

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