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How do you know which luminosity level to choose between 40 and 500 lumens? How do I choose the most suitable light for my sport? A camping light has a very specific purpose, so how do I know which one to use?
In this article, we explain how to make the right choice of camping light based on four criteria: the number of people who need light, the time the light will be used, the area to be lit (indoors or outdoors) and the comfort of use in an outdoor environment.
The average time we take as a basis is two and a half hours of use per evening. To give you an idea, our range goes from one to six evenings without having to recharge your light or change the batteries.
We gave you a bit of a spoiler above when we talked about dynamo recharging. But our Quechua lights can also be recharged in other ways!
• By (micro) USB cable. This USB cable (included) can be plugged into your phone's adapter (not included). If you're going exploring in your car, you can also recharge it from your vehicle's cigarette lighter.
• By dynamo, of course.
• With electric batteries for certain small models.
For the BL200 and BL100, allow three hours and 40 minutes for a full charge from a 220V mains socket. An indicator light tells you whether the light is fully charged or not.
For the latest model, with a USB C cable included (instead of a micro USB), allow around three hours, again using a 220V mains socket.
To help you know when your light is at the end of its charge, the light flashes as soon as it has 10% energy left!
Quechua has designed the BL230 light so you and three other people can be well-lit when camping or bivouacking, without having to compromise. With a maximum output of 230 lumens, it has four lighting modes: red light at 15 lumens, yellow light between 80 and 230 lumens and – the icing on the cake – a torch mode with a white light at 40 lumens!
Why all these modes? Well, this adjustable brightness adapts to what you're doing while camping: the red mode and the two yellow modes are perfect for eating, cooking or reading, while the torch mode is ideal for moving around or searching through your belongings without waking the whole group.
A single button switches from one mode to another. It can be set down or hung up thanks to its adjustable strap. And it weighs just 150g!
Its shape gives it stability and the ability to be suspended, as well as the possibility of having several lighting modes for greater visual comfort.
Adjustable brightness means you can dim the lights in the evening for a "cosier" feel (or so you don't wake up all at once in the morning if you get up before the sun). It also means your eyes won't be so tired from too much light!
Having an ultra-powerful camping light is all very well, but you risk dazzling your neighbours if you have to turn it on at full power to look for something in the middle of the night!
Some models of camping light have adjustable brightness and a light "colour" (usually white, yellow or red). The red light is extremely useful at night, so you can move around or look for things without being dazzled. And yes, your eyes will have got used to the low light levels outside and you may well regret using a 200 lumen light!
The red light also allows you to observe nocturnal animals without disturbing them, but without being in complete darkness yourself.
Finally, let's end on a high note with some semantics (we love camping as much as we love words!).
We sometimes hear people talk about camping lights, and sometimes about camping lanterns. In the Quechua language, these two terms are synonymous, since "lantern" means "box with openwork, translucent or transparent walls, containing a source of light," according to the dictionary. Our lights therefore meet these criteria.
However, there are brands that offer camping lights based on the design of traditional lanterns, sometimes powered by a camping gas bottle. And the dull gas camping lights, while charming, are also generally heavier. At Quechua, we prefer LEDs for their performance and lifespan (up to 100,000 hours – that's a lot of camping nights!). And in terms of design, we've given the old gas camping lanterns a facelift, while retaining the 360° lighting!
LED camping lights (or lanterns) are often rechargeable and can be plugged into USB solar chargers, like solar panels, so you don't always have to find an electric socket (not always available if you decide to camp in an isolated spot to recharge your batteries close to nature).