This tiny light may be just what you need to lighten up your pack and brighten up your night.
by Leon Pantenburg
Disclaimer: Olight supplied the product for this review. I was not paid to write it. Olight had no input in this, and all I ever promise in any review is a fair shake.
We were on an alligator hunt, deep in Mississippi’s Pearl River backwaters. Several gators were spotted, but we couldn’t get close enough to harvest any of them. At dusk, I tried to turn on my old reliable Fenix HL60R headlamp to look for the red pinpoints that were alligator eyes. The Fenix had been used extensively for about three years, and it had never failed. It was utterly reliable until it wasn’t.
Apparently the excessive heat and humidity got to the Fenix and the battery didn’t work. Luckily, there were backup headlamps on the boat. Lesson learned: Always have spare lights, even when using reliable equipment.
But what is a good backup light that is lightweight, compact and powerful? What are some of the things to look for?
To start with, any light needs to be reliable. Murphy says that if a light will fail, it will do so at the worst possible time. My light failed during an alligator hunt, where we might have had to wrestle an amped up, thrashing toothy critter onto a boat. This is manly, macho stuff that leads to campfire stories that only get better over the years. And that might have been the case if we’d hooked one. As it turned out, alligator hunting was relaxing…we quietly cruised the backwaters, glassing with binoculars for the reptiles. I also saw birds, waterfowl and other swamp creatures.
Anymore, I prefer rechargeables when it comes to outdoor electronic gear, since they can be charged with a (rechargeable) battery. That battery, in turn can be juiced by a vehicle or a solar panel. As long as the sun is shining, running out of battery power is a thing of the past.
Here are the Olight Perun stats and data, according to the Olight website:
● Max 1,000-lumen output from a light the size of your thumb.
● Max 4.5-day runtime powered by an IMR16340 rechargeable battery
● Included velcro duty patch with a 60-degree rotation for gear attachment
● Use the Perun Mini handheld, head-mounted, or attach to any magnetic surface for hands-free use
Output: This little light produces illumination way out of per-portion to its size. It’s amazing how the turbo mode lights up the woods for 75 to 100 yards. This is great light to put in a tackle box or day pack. You never know when an unexpected delay can leave you coming back to the dock or trailhead in the dark. I use the lowest light modes the most. I like to read in my sleeping bag at night and the moon and low modes work great. For moving around camp at night, the low and medium modes are more than adequate. The moon mode is a little brighter than a phone screen.
Ergonomics: The light is tiny, but the controls are large and easy to use. The on-off button is on top, and easily manipulated with your thumb. This light is simple to use, even when wearing gloves.
Velcro attachment: This patch is really handy. It could be attached to the crown of a baseball cap with a Velcro connection, or on the sleeves or chest of my Beretta BDU shirt.
Weight and size: Backpackers who have to cut pack weight will love this light. At 4.23 ounces and 2.5 inches long, this light is small and easy to carry, while still having large controls.
Headband: The headband attaches the Perun Mini to it with Velcro. The elastic headband is comfortable to wear and use and weighs virtually nothing. The headband expands the usefulness of the light exponentially. A headlamp frees up your hands and allows doing tasks in the dark that would be awkward without both hands. There is also less chance of dropping the light in the snow, standing water and/or mud.
Light longevity: I tested the Turbo mode from fully charged to dead battery, and got one hour and 44 minutes. This is excellent performance for a light and battery this small. On the low or moon modes, you could count on enough light to last a couple of days.
Do you need an Olight Perun?
Well, it is a handy, compact, lightweight, powerful light that is easy to take along. That means it will be tossed in a daypack or tackle box, and always at hand. That also means you won’t be left in the dark if your outing plans change for some reason.
Right now, the Perun is a backup in my daypack for my Fenix. The more I use this light, the more I like it. It’s a definite keeper.
Order your Olight Perun here.
UPDATE: Shortly after this post was published, I took my Perun on a three-day canoe guide trip with Quapaw Canoe Company on the lower Mississippi River. The Perun was the only light I used, and it performed magnificently. The little light proved ample illumination for every task I needed, and there was not an instance when a bigger light would have done a better job. A real plus was that the light is waterproof, and fits nicely in a lifejacket pocket. The Perun will be riding in my deer hunting fanny pack this season!
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