Customer Reviews: FOURSEVENS Mini 123/ML Black Finish / Cool White LED G2; 1XCR123A; 216 Lumens
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on January 8, 2013
I picked up a Maglite Solitaire for my wife as a stocking stuffer this year and immediately liked the idea of having a useable light on my person at all times (preferably attached to my keys since I am forgetful). The issue with the solitaire is that I wouldn't consider it as useable for anything other than maybe reading a map or looking in the glove box for a spare napkin. Now, I've had several Maglites, and they have proven to be a reliable, quality, American-made product. Unfortunately, they have fallen way behind in terms of modern LED technology (although they are starting to catch up), so I started searching elsewhere. My (long) list of criteria were:

- Small enough to be carried on a keychain
- Multiple modes (with special modes like SOS being a plus)
- A very low mode with LONG runtime that could be used for longer-term emergencies or for close quarters so as not to ruin your night vision
- A medium mode with sufficient light and runtime for navigating around if you run out of gas in the middle of nowhere at night, or have to spend a couple hours fixing your car on the roadside
- The ability to accept lithium batteries since I live in a cold climate and would likely be using the light outdoors
- Waterproof and durable so it works when I need it

I have this bad habit of getting a little bit obsessive over technical details when I am purchasing some kind of tool, so I actually spent weeks looking at different options including other FourSevens lights, Fenix, NiteCore, EagleTac, and so on. In the end, I made the decision to buy the FourSevens Mini ML Gen 2, and I think it was absolutely the perfect choice. I picked the ML over the ML-X because the ML had 50 hours more runtime on low than the ML-X does.

I've found the low mode to be very useful actually. Since I always have the light on me, I often use it for navigating around the house at night and checking in on the kids so as not to have to turn on every light in the house. It does a great job of identifying end tables, laundry baskets, and Tonka trucks left on the floor before they become a hazard. On a bright night even against snow it is not very visible outdoors, but if you were lost in the dark woods on a cloudy night (for a week) this thing would let you get around. It is also more than enough for doing small, close tasks such as reading. The runtime is an awesome 150 hours, which is more than most of us will ever need.

The light gets very bright on medium. I have no problems using it to spot my dogs when they are rooting in the bushes along our back fence at night (about 40 yards from where I stand). This mode would probably be more than adequate for almost any task you needed to do (fixing a flat, finding something buried in your trunk, walking the dog, finding something you dropped at night, hiking). It is about twice as bright as the old AA incandescent Maglites, but seems much brighter because the beam quality is so good. Runtime is about 8 hours, which is great.

This setting lights up my entire backyard in about a 120 degree arc. I'm not sure what I would use it for except maybe blinding an attacker (although you have to twist on and off three times to get there, so I probably wouldn't try it), finding a lost pet at night, or signalling incoming aircraft. The spot lights up things 75+ yards away, and the peripheral light is just awesome. Like I said, it covers about 120 degrees with very bright light. Runtime is around an hour, but I can't see why you would need to use this mode for very long.

This light has a strobe, SOS, and beacon mode. I find the SOS and beacon to be great options if you were ever to get into trouble. I could see setting the beacon on top of your car to signal a tow truck or a friend if you were stuck, so it could come in handy even if you are not a wilderness backpacker. I'm not sure how useful the strobe is though. I would think of the strobe as something you would use if you needed to disorient an attacker so you could get away or fight back, but to engage the strobe you have to turn the light on and off 7 times (or something like that) in rapid succession. It is hardly something you could do at a moments notice.

Operation is easy. The light in its off position is loose (not tight like Maglites) are, and you tighten it to turn it on. At first it felt a little backwards to me, but wasn't a big deal. If you want to switch modes, you turn it off and back on real fast. If you want the special modes, you turn it off and on 6 times (two cycles). Someone reviewing the light said that the loose bezel was a major flaw, but it doesn't seem to be an issue. I don't think having a loose bezel get tightened is any more likely than having a tight bezel get loosened in your pocket. I've been carrying this every day, and it has not turned on by itself yet.

This is a very well made light. Fit is good, the finish is flawless. It is brighter than you would ever need it to be, will run longer than you probably ever will need it to, and has a nice setting right in the middle that is the best of both. Is it a little big for a keychain? Maybe... I tend to carry a lot of stuff on my keychain, so I don't really notice it at all. If you are like my wife and only carry three keys, then you probably won't like it. I think it is a very small price to pay to have such a useful tool with you at all times though. I will probably buy a few more to keep around (maybe the AA one since it uses common batteries). I would definitely recommend it to anyone that wants to keep a light on them.
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on July 15, 2013
Incredibly small but very bright. The quality of the light is incredible, as is the performance for the small package. I opted for the Mini ML with the XP-G2 LED rather than the Mini ML-X with the XM-L2 LED. My understanding is that the XP-G2 LED throws the beam further while the XM-L2 has more of a flood beam pattern. I'm very pleased with the beam and have detected no donuts or artifacts. I'm also very happy with the flood and the strikes a good balance and is amazing for a light of this size. The throw is so substantial, I struggle to notice a difference between the throw of my Mini ML and my older Fenix LD 20 with the XP-G R4 LED. Again, absolutely incredible for this size! Some have complained that the twisty user interface requires two hands, but I haven't found that to be true at all. I can easily switch modes with one hand. Also, I dont have to worry about the light turning on in my pocket like the clicky interface of the Preon 2. I love the included lanyard and often wear it around my neck for my usual 11:00 pm dog walk. The light carry weight makes it very comfortable. Activating the light and letting it swing from my neck also provides hands free lighting so I can clean up the little brown surprises my dog leaves me on occasion. This is my third Four Sevens product and I have been very pleased thus far. Responsive customer service as well. So many uses for a light of this size that is so capable. I highly recommend it!
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on September 18, 2012
This flashlight comes in the same box as the 180 lumen ML, but has a sticker affixed to it signifying that it is the upgraded XP-G2 model that is actually 216 lumens. 4Sevens' website says that all the runtimes are the same as the 180 lumen model, but with 20% more lumen output. Check their site for specific figures. The box includes a battery, neck lanyard, split ring, and booklet.

The form factor of this light is as cool as can be and is why I got it (after looking at all 1xCR123 options). I love that it's about the size of my thumb. The twisty mechanism works extremely well. I have large hands, and can hold the light between my middle finger and palm and operate the twisty with my index and thumb.

I just got the light today so I haven't been able to test it at night for its throw/flood. I can already tell that it is very bright and very floody. Holding it up to a wall from a 1' away in a lit room, looking at the hotspot on the wall is uncomfortable. The beam looks great and is artifact free. It fills up dark rooms very easily. This is the floodiest light I own.

I will say that if your keys go in your standard sized jeans pocket, you won't like this light on your keychain. It's a bit too thick. Also, the split ring attaches to side of the light (look at pic), so that it tail stands perfectly. However, the split ring being on the side means that the light doesn't hang straight down on your keys, and makes getting your keys in a pocketable configuration a bit difficult. It potentially will bang your dashboard in your car as you drive. It is not too heavy for a keychain, though. Just a little awkward. Also, it will easily roll, especially if you don't attach the split ring.

The previous paragraph highlights the negative of the light: no clip of any kind. It does come with a neck lanyard, but I won't be using that. This light basically just has to be in the bottom of your pocket, unattached to anything. It is potentially easy to lose since it's so small. A clip would be handy. Check out the Olight i1 or EagleTac D25C Mini if you feel you need a clip.

5 star performance and usability at this price in a very cool thumb-sized form factor
Would love to have a clip since it's too thick for keychain duty, and small enough to lose easily.
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on October 11, 2013
I bought 3 of the mini's and 1 has completely failed and the other one only lights up occasionally with in the last year, according to Amazon I bought these lights in Sept of last year. This to me is complete BS considering you're paying $30 a flashlight that fits on your key chain, thats $100 (Considering Taxes)! The only one that's made it is the Quark Mini 123 made in the USA, I don't know what they do different in China but one huge difference is the circuit board they use the one they use in the Chinese manufacturing is garbage hardly sealed and the aluminum ionizing is sub par. I've bought a few other lights from Chinese manufacturing companies such as Fenix Flashlights and the ionizing and coating on the circuit board is far superior than what Quark is putting out, also the packaging is night and day YOUR USA PRODUCTS WERE VERY, VERY NICE, WHAT I GOT FORM THE ML CHINESE MADE PRODUCT IS POSTER BOARD MATERIAL. FIX YOUR PRODUCT FOURSEVENS!
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on February 27, 2013
I have used this light daily since I received it. I have found no flaws and it provides the intensity of light for all occations Presented to a Persons in a normal day. The operation is easy an its small and out of the way until you need it. I am a chef and use it for seeing in the freezer, looking into our old(lightless) ovens to check roasts etc. Also comes in handy getting to an fro my car late at night, seeing keys an keyholes and such. Its been in the heat , cold wet dry and has not failed me.I am also going on 2 months and still on the first battery. I should also say that if you wear it on the included lanyard you can use it one handed with little practice. All and all I love it and is a permanent part of my edc!!
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Great Mini light that doesn't skimp on lumens. I keep two flashlight on me at all times when outside of home. This Four Sevens goes on my keychain and is about the size of a stubby thumb. The other is a ZebraLight SC52 aa powered 280 lumen light that's slimmer than the Four Sevens Mini, and so far the best aa battery powered micro light I have reviewed.
I don't baby my carry lights regardless of how much they cost. I don't abuse them, as I take care of my tools, but use them I do.
The finish is coming off the Mini from all it's carrying and use. It's been submerged in water, dropped hundreds of times on concrete and still keeps going. While it has all the SOS strobe features, I never use those on any of my lights, just nice to have in case that one life event rears it's ugly head at us. I don't care much for twist on lights, but it's probably the best switch for hard use and guaranteed functioning.

This little sucker is a tank. Get one. You will be constantly surprised how often it is there for you.
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on February 5, 2013
This is a great little flashlight. Even with the battery installed, it's lightweight and it puts out a clean-patterned, white beam. However, the "programming" for the different light functions is a little "iffy", in my book. In order to access the "strobes" functions, you have to toggle through the 3 power levels TWICE by rotating the head, turning the light on and off in quick succession. Then, once you go through all 3 power levels twice, you are in the "strobes" functions - of which there are 3. This, in itself isn't too bad once you get used to it so I'm not going to complain too much about that. For such a small light, I'm sure they were very limited in how to add more functions without adding some type of button to the light (which it really doesn't have room for). The thing that really irritates me (and the main reason I didn't give this light 5 stars) is that when you first turn on the light, it defaults to its lowest power level - which is pretty much useless for anything besides a nightlight. I feel that it would have been much better to have had it default to its highest power level and then allow you to toggle to its lowest level if you wanted that. Usually, if I'm in a crunch for a quick light, I need a BRIGHT one, not a nightlight. But, other than that, this is a pretty awesome little light.
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on October 27, 2014
I use this light every night walking back and forth to my sisters house in the country. It is simply awesome!! The range and brightness is incredible. It is also small enough to hold in my mouth if my hands are full. Battery life seems good. Only drawback and it's not that important to me. On mine I really have to twist to make sure it's off. I find my self not twisting the head enough and any slight pressure on the light turns it on. Other than that. BUY IT!! you wont regret it.
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on November 21, 2015
I bought this from 4Sevens directly a couple of years ago. Initially I really liked the light because it was bright and made of high quality parts. However the "twist" mechanism kept turning on in my pocket. One day the light would not come on at all. So I thought maybe it just got left on and the battery burnt out. Replaced battery, was not battery. Contacted 4Sevens multiple times, no reply for 1.5yrs. About 6-months ago, while moving I came across the light. Contacted 4Sevens again, they fixed it. Everytime I used it, it either turned on in my pocket or the pieces came apart. Eventually I lost the bottom part... From my experience the twist design renders this flashlight useless. Maybe I got a bad light, but from my experience with costumer service, their products are a waste of time and money. I would not recommend 4Sevens products to anyone.

- Light is bright.
- Materials are high quality.
- Costumer service.
- Twist design is impractical (comes apart in pocket and/or light turns on in pocket)
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on November 3, 2014
I've got a total of 5 4Sevens flashlights now. 2 Mini 123s, a Quark 123 Tactical, a Quark123^2 Tactical, and a Quark Turbo X. All of them are amazingly bright, have easily selectable brightnesses, have amazing battery life, and are rugged. I keep some in my cars, a few by our bed, and some in the garage. They always work and always do what is needed. They seem built to last.

This Mini 123 is the perfect all around useful little light. Things I like about it are:
- It can tail stand. We use these lights when our power goes out and they provide great light when on medium brightness standing on their tail shining at the ceiling. Really lights up our whole living room. I've even taken a shower with just one flashlight lighting up the bathroom.
- The size is amazingly small...barely bigger than the CR123 battery it uses.
- The head turns very smoothly and allows easy access to the 3 brightness settings by loosening and tightening the head.
- The light comes with a battery, nice neck lanyard, and spare o-ring. Nice!

About the only thing I don't care for is the metal ring that secures the lanyard to the light doesn't freely spin in the hole on the light. Only the "single wire" section of the ring fits in the hole...the "double wire" sections of the ring are too big. Not a big deal though.
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