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Best Rechargeable Flashlight Review – The Fenix PD36R

fenix pd36r flashlights

Hey everyone, I have exciting news! I may have just found my new favorite rechargeable flashlight, the Fenix PD36R. When I first saw this flashlight I knew I needed to have it and I knew I needed to review it. It has a few aspects that make it a little different from many other Fenix flashlights and I was immediately intrigued. Keep reading to find out why the Fenix PD36R has become my new favorite rechargeable flashlight.

Fenix PD36R USB Type-C Rechargeable Flashlight
Fenix PD36R Rechargeable Flashlight

USB Type-C Rechargeable Flashlight

First of all, the PD36R has a USB type-C charging function. It was only a matter of time before we started seeing USB type-C flashlights, and I’m so glad to finally see it. On the side switch you’ll see an indicator that will let you know when the flashlight is charging when it’s finished. It charges quickly and I really like the USB port cover on the flashlight. It’s easy to open, but doesn’t open at all in your pocket or when using it. It’s always annoying when you have a port cover that opens really easily when you don’t want it to.

The PD36R uses a 21700 battery and this is another reason why I wanted this Fenix flashlight. 21700 batteries are extremely powerful and this flashlight includes a Fenix 21700 battery with a 5000 mAh capacity. The Fenix branded batteries are high quality batteries and I haven’t really had any issues with them. When you first turn the flashlight on, you can check the indicator which will let you know about how much charge you have left in your battery. Already you can start seeing why I love the Fenix PD36R rechargeable flashlight.

Fenix PD36R 1600 Lumen Rechargeable Flashlight
1600 Lumen LED Flashlight

1600 Lumen LED Flashlight

Not only is it rechargeable, it is a powerful LED flashlight. It delivers a maximum output of 1600 lumens and has a maximum beam distance of almost 283 meters. It features a smooth reflector and it gives you a really nice beam pattern where you have focused beam along with a really good spill that allows you to see everything in front of you. I really do like the beam pattern on this flashlight. Also, it uses a LUMINUS SST-40 LED which is different from the CREE LEDs that you usually see with Fenix flashlights. I did compare the LUMINUS LED to the CREE LED of my Fenix PD35 V2.0 and couldn’t tell much of a difference between the two.

The PD36R flashlight is also very compact. In length, it’s less than 5 and a half inches and it may not be considered a pocket flashlight, but I have definitely enjoyed carrying it in my pocket. It comes with a two-way clip which is always nice to see. It’s lightweight and really easy to carry around, so if you don’t mind the size, the Fenix PD36R could be a good pocket flashlight.

simple led flashlight fenix pd36r
Easy to Use Fenix Flashlight

Multiple Outputs and Simple UI

As with most high quality LED flashlights now, you do expect to see multiple outputs and the Fenix PD36R delivers on that. With this flashlight you get 6 outputs total and that does include a strobe mode. The brightness levels range from 30 lumens to 1600 lumens; I was surprised to see that the eco mode was 30 lumens. I would have expected the eco mode to be 5 lumens or less so that was a bit of a surprise.

Something I’m really liking about this flashlight is the runtimes. On the lowest mode the runtime is 115 hours which is impressive, but we have seen better in other flashlights. However, The runtimes really stand out in the higher outputs. You have eco which is 30 lumens, low which is 150 lemons, medium which is 350 lumens, high which is 800 lumens, and turbo which is 1600 lumens. With turbo mode, you get almost 3 hours of runtime, with the high mode you get almost 6 hours, and with the medium mode you get 8 and a half hours. These are extremely impressive runtimes for the higher outputs. We normally don’t see such fantastic runtimes which makes me very excited about the PD36R.

The user interface on the PD36R is straightforward and simple to use. You have the tail switch which has a momentary-on and a full click to turn on off the flashlight. You also have the side switch which will cycle through the different outputs and give you access to that strobe mode. It’s always nice to see a simple and straightforward user interface that you don’t need to put much thought into. 

durable fenix flashlight pd36r
Extremely Durable LED Flashlight

Sturdy Fenix Flashlight

Yet another reason to love Fenix flashlights, they are always sturdy and reliable. The PD36R feels great in your hand. The textured design on the body allows you to grip the flashlight easily and it’s very easy to clean. Not every user cares about that, but I do. The body is made from a strong aluminum and it does have the hard anodized anti-abrasive finish. All-in-all, the look of this flashlight is excellent. It is also IP68 waterproof and is able to handle a 5 foot drop which is good because some of us drop our flashlights more than we would like to admit. 

Final Thoughts

So I pretty much went over all of the features of this rechargeable flashlight. Let’s take a look at some pros and cons of the Fenix PD36R.

Pros: Okay, so I need to be careful not to fill this whole section up with pros, because there is a lot to this flashlight. First of all, that USB type-C charging function is amazing. I’m so glad to finally see that in a Fenix flashlight. The beam pattern is really great and gives you a good balance between a focus and a spill. The user interface is easy to learn and doesn’t require much to it. It’s compact and easy to carry with you while still delivering a powerful 1600 lumens.

Cons: I can only think of one con with this flashlight and that’s the eco mode. While 30 lumens is low, it would be really nice to see a lower brightness level. Fenix usually has eco modes that are around five lumens. For example, the eco mode on the PD35 V2.0 is three lumens. I definitely think Fenix should have made that eco mode lower or included another brightness level that was around 5 lumens.

Conclusion: When it comes to Fenix flashlights, you can’t go wrong. The Fenix PD36R is a phenomenal rechargeable flashlight that you’ll love within minutes of holding it. It is one of the best rechargeable flashlights on the market today so check out the Fenix PD36R rechargeable flashlight.

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