1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Possibly the perfect Walking Through the Woods flashlight,
This review is from: Smith & Wesson Galaxy 12-LED Flashlight (6 White, 2 Red, 2 Green, & 2 Blue LEDs) (Apparel)I decided that I needed a new flashlight after my dog came across a snake coiled up in the road one night. It was dark enough that I thought the snake was a shadow. My dog walked up and sniffed it, then jumped back when it moved (it may have been one of our local Copperheads, so I'm thankful she didn't get bitten). The next few nights I carried my big LED Maglite, but that turned out to be way too powerful. Yes, I had more than enough light to check for snakes, but it totally blasted my night vision and left me seeing spots after using it.
While researching it, I was worried that the Galaxy 12 LED model wouldn't be powerful enough to use outdoors. The red LED's do not put out enough light to walk by, but the blue and green LED's put out plenty of light. The colored lights fall off quickly, but carry well past my dog's 15 foot leash. Please note that I'm out in the country. If the flashlight was competing with city streetlights, then the colored lights might not work as well outdoors. The white LED's are much more powerful and carry further, but are not so bright as to dazzle me with reflections or totally destroy my night vision (both the blue and green lights are much better than the white light, but not as night vision friendly as the red color). All colors have a very wide pattern, and will illuminate a one lane country road almost edge to edge. I'm sure the wide beam is the major reason the light doesn't carry further, so this model is not a good long range light. But the beam is wide enough that you don't need to swing it back and forth to see everything. The 12 LED Galaxy doesn't work as a searchlight, and doesn't blind your opponent in a fight. It does provide a gentle but effective light to walk, work or read with. The different color options allow the light to be customized for different situations.
Reading various reviews, it appears that there are two slightly different models of the "12 LED Galaxy". Mine has 6 white LED's and two each of red, blue and green. Apparently there is a newer(?) model that has 8 white LED's and two each of red and blue. On mine, the red comes on first, followed by blue and then green. The dual switch arrangement is great, as the upper switch gives you instant access to the brightest white light, and the lower switch gives instant access to the dimmest red light. Mine also came with a wrist strap, the other model doesn't seem to (although many camera straps should work just fine).
The red LED's are definitely best at preserving night vision. Others have complained that the brighter blue/green LED's make the flashlight useless for those who need to protect their night vision. Once you're used to the very simple controls, I don't see that as a problem. Yes, you have to cycle through the other color(s). But all you have to do is hold the lens against your clothing while you're cycling past the brighter color(s) as you turn it off. If you don't use the flashlight often enough to remember this, then you might be better off with a flashlight that only has red and white. To me, the added versatility of the blue and green light makes this minor inconvenience worthwhile.