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on May 25, 2011
Hi everyone, this review was copied and pasted from my blog......Yeah I know it's the lazy way, but basically the same thing I would have said here, except more detailed.

Enjoy the review!

The lantern has an orange and white plastic exterior, giving center stage to a clear acrylic light diffuser. The diffuser holds 9 led bulbs and is fully adjustable. Lifting the diffuser spreads light a full 360 degrees, while folding will cover an area of 180 degrees up to 10 feet away. Lifting the diffuser will also expose both a metal light reflector and locking battery compartment door. The door can easily be unlocked, by twisting clockwise using a straight flat headed object, such as a screwdriver or small coin. Once inside the user will notice space for 3 alkaline D cell batteries and a small secured green battery pack, located at the top left of the compartment. At the rear of the unit is a small 0.5 watt solar panel used to recharge the green battery pack. The solar cell is encased in an adjustable orange housing and uses amorphous silicon technology (great for solar efficiency in low and high light conditions). Also located around back, near the top is a 5 position switch controlling the led bulbs functions and selecting between the two power sources. The unit is pretty light weight, weighing only 1.5 lbs without the D cells, between 2 - 2.5lbs with the D cells ( depending on battery brand).

Unlike other solar lanterns I've used in the past, the energizer has a great deal of light output and tons of ingenious features to make it one of the best on the market. One feature includes the cleverness to accommodate 3 regular D cell batteries, in addition to the solar battery pack. This allows users to not have to worry about accidentally forgetting the batteries during their next camping or fishing trip. A second innovative feature is the ability to adjust the led's up or down, providing the right type of light for any application. As far as the led bulbs there are 9 total, 8 white and 1 amber. The white bulbs are located inside of twin fogged diffusers, for even light dissipation in almost infinite adjustable positions. Running at 66 lumens, the 8 white led's provide room filling light without any dark spots or light artifacts. The single amber led provides less than 5 lumens and is intended to be a used as a night light. Even though it's light output is rather faint, the amber bulb still allows users to see basic items comfortable within 2 feet of the front of the unit. Probably one of the nicest features on the lantern, is the ability to run off of either the alkaline cells or the solar battery pack. Selecting between the two sources is easy with the built in 5 way switch. The middle position is off, while the left 2 functions control the night light and high beam. The left position runs off of the solar power pack, the right providing the same functions runs off of the 3 D cell batteries. As for run times, the solar power pack provides 2.5 hours of bright illumination, 4 hours of total illumination. The 3 Alkaline cells will provide up to 165 hours of light, with around 4 days of bright light. Even though there is a slight voltage difference between the solar 3.6 volt pack and the combined 4.5 volts from the alkaline cells, light output is near the same.

I will be the first to admit that I am not really a devoted camping / outdoors person, so the energizers uses will come in handy mostly when I'm at home. For that use, it provides a stable lighting backup in case of a power grid failure and the occasional handy job requiring a bright light. I like it's ability to provide light, without the need for hazardous fuels or an open flame. It is more than bright enough to light up an entire room and will run for days with D cell batteries. I do however have some issues with the unit, the first being the white exterior. Not that I don't like the design, just that the white color extends to the base of the unit, so if you place it anywhere less than immaculately clean it will get dirty. The second issue is that there is no charging or battery life indicator located on the unit. This would be a great feature to let me know if the unit is getting adequate sunlight and also the batteries current state of charge. The last issue is that there is no low setting for the white led bulbs.If added the low setting could extend run time a few hours with the solar power pack, or a few days with the D cells. Overall I feel that the energizer hybrid solar lantern is an excellent product, with many great features and uses. It has an affordable price, is made by a trustful company and is a necessity for those pesky bad weather situations. I would definitely recommend this product to family and friends in a heartbeat. My only hope is that energizer corrects the noted issues in later iterations of this lantern.
1919 comments129 of 135 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on June 25, 2012
I've had a fascination with flashlights and lanterns for years. I have purchased many different types over the years. I was interested in this for the solar recharge aspect, making it useful when the power is down for an extended period of time or away from power such as camping.

The lantern performs precisely as advertised. It recharges in 5 hours of sunlight. It puts out light for at least 2 ½ hours using the rechargeable pack. Using D Cell alkaline (Energizer) it has exceeded 160 hours of continuous use. Be aware the light gradually dims as the batteries are depleted.

It is not nearly as bright as Rayovac SE3DLN Sportsman Xtreme LED Lantern which also uses 3 D batteries. It puts out light comparable to Rayovac SP1W3AALN-B Sportsman 65-Lumens LED Mini Lantern With Batteries and Coleman 3AA High-Tech LED Mini Lantern which are both lightweight, smaller, and use AA batteries. Flipping it down from 360 degree area light to use the reflector for 180 degree area light does not increase the brightness to my eyes.

Without the D cell batteries it is light weight. The rechargeable battery pack looks to be AAAs.

If you need a solar rechargeable light for brief lighting needs backed by extended run time on D cell batteries, this should be among your considerations. If you don't need the solar aspect and want an excellent small camping lantern my pick is the Rayovac SP1W3AALN-B Sportsman 65-Lumens LED Mini Lantern With Batteries. If you're looking for much brighter light with good endurance my first choice is the Rayovac SE3DLN Sportsman Xtreme LED Lantern, the brightest small lantern I've come across.
22 comments39 of 40 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on November 9, 2011
Bought this lantern after a major snow storm left us without power for a week. It's great. You don't waste your batteries by having them sit in the device. The solar panel gives enough energy for 2.5 hours of light. I plan on keeping it handy and storing fresh batteries in my emergency kit along with a battery-powered radio, emergency contact information, non-perishables, blankets and other emergency supplies. That way, I'll have the light nearby and if the power goes out, the solar panel will give me enough light to find my way around to my emergency kit.
0Comment27 of 28 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on November 7, 2011
I had just ordered this light about a week before the San Diego blackout and it worked great. I charged it the sun for about 4-5 hours and It lit up my living room fine. It has the bright main light and a very dim yellowish light. I like that the top swivels up to adjust for the sum. Everything about this product seems great so far.
0Comment23 of 25 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on February 10, 2012
I bought one of these awhile back at full price from a brick and mortar retail store and was impressed with its performance. Saw the price drop here on Amazon and decided to snag two more. Both arrived packed very well and in perfect working condition.

These lights are perfect for power outages and camping trips. The runtime is not the greatest on the 3 D cells, but it is a significant period, and with daily charging and use of the solar cells the effective runtime is dramatically longer than most similar lights. Leave it in the sun for a few hours and you will get about 2.5-3 hours of runtime off of the solar (the stated runtime is pretty accurate in my experience) - that is 2.5-3 hours of runtime you are not taxing the D-cells, which makes them last that much longer. And when the D-cells die? You still have a decent amount of usable light with the solar, you just might have to ration a bit. Switch to the nightlight when area illumination is not needed. At 40 lumens it lights up a decent sized bedroom or tent fairly well. Not the brightest, but plenty of light to work with.

The only reason it doesn't get 5 stars is because the light could be a bit brighter and the battery runtime a bit longer. I'll give it 4.5, nearly perfect.

I recommend this one highly over the battery-only models. The solar can greatly extend runtimes if used wisely.

EDIT: After a few months and some power outages I decided to go ahead and give it that extra half star to bring it up to 5. It is bright enough to give workable light in a bedroom or kitchen, and that solar option is worth its weight in gold. It charges enough to last a night, and then you can recharge it again the next day. For the $$, it is a 5 star item.
0Comment15 of 16 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on March 25, 2012
This lantern provides the advertised useful light of 2.5 hours if left in a sunny window to charge. I didn't align the solar panel other than face it generally towards the sun and left it there all day. The lantern light is not blindingly bright, but certainly enough to get comfortably around a room easily by its light. I would say it is equivalent to a 15w incandescent bulb. Perfect for emergency lighting, and the solar will extend the useful life of the "D" cells significantly. Lantern is equally bright on solar battery or the "D" cells. Seems well made, have not had the problems with broken parts other reviewers have had. With the batteries installed the lantern is quite heavy, and so is best suited for standing on a flat surface than hanging from a hook. In an ideal world I would like to see some sort of visual reading of charge, even if only a green led for fully charged. I would definitely buy another of these and recommend it for camping or emergency use where weight is not an issue.
0Comment16 of 18 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on August 13, 2012
We purchased this lantern for our camper. We've tried several other rechargeable lanterns and they seem to only last 1 season. This is a great light that we have yet to run the solar battery down on (and we haven't put batteries in it yet). We use it nightly while in our camper and our kids use it when they want to play games inside. Great purchase, great price!
0Comment8 of 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on January 9, 2013
Since the alternate power is solar, i would first recommend it for regions with a lot of sunshine, like here in hurricane zone.
I already owned the non solar version of this lantern (4 D operated) and was very satisfied with it.
PROS : -Powerful output
-Only needs 3 D batteries
-Night light feature
-Solid construction
-Alternate power in case you are short of batteries
-Very long autonomy with batteries
CONS : -No solar charge indicator
-Only one setting (high)
-Short autonomy on solar (less than 3h)
On the whole, excellent product, highly recommended.
0Comment7 of 7 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 12, 2011
I had the same problem as others described. I didn't return it. I held the spring in place and wedged in the battery. It works. I am not happy about it and it reflects on the quality control of the manufacturer and Energizer. However, I think the lantern is great. I have ordered three more as gifts.

Gabby
0Comment6 of 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on September 10, 2012
At the last blackout in the neighborhood, I searched for batteries for my other Energizer 9-LED lantern because the ones I had were weak. I bought the solar version and put it in the kitchen window so it will always be ready. Charge lasted longer than 3 hours. I use both of my two lanterns, solar and non-solar camping where I made a tin-foil reflector so I can set the lanterns on the table and reflect all light down for reading. Other lanterns flood the eyes, bad for reading. Good design.
11 comment5 of 5 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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