Saturday, September 6, 2003

Green Force TriStar Diamond underwater light

Green Force has a whole selection of light heads (Halogen, LED, HID) and multiple battery packs of various sizes that can be put together as needed, either directly (for handheld torches) or via umbilical cable (for handsfree lighting, together with e.g. a Goodman handle).

This modularity and the promise of a virtually unbreakable LED light with decent output and long burn time, made me choose for the TriStar with Flexi II battery. Not to mention it's "Made in Belgium".

Modularity & expandability.

Power? I was told by Green Force that the TriStar Diamond's output would be at least equivalent to a 30W halogen bulb. Alas, that's not really the case, actual equivalent output being at most 20W. With a 20° beam, that means it's useless during daytime dives or when there are a lot of particles in the water.

Twice the power and focus would make it an acceptable light, but as it is, it's just too weak for technical diving.

For recreational night dives however, I found it to be quite decent, the soft white light (5800°K) rather pleasant.

Burn time: together with Green Force's Flexi II NiMh battery, the TriStar Diamond burns for at least 9 hours at near 100%!

Robustness. Besides their long burn time, LED lights also offer some other advantages: robustness, lifetime of the bulbs, no problems switching them on & off at will, and in the case of the TriStar Diamond, built-in redundancy due to the fact that there are, as the name implies, three LED bulbs. All this unlike the more expensive and delicate HID lights which have a warm-up & cool-down delay and a limited number of times they can be turned on & off.

Maximum depth rating of -140m.