Light and Motion Gobe Torch
A typical torch, or flashlight (this is, after all, an American product) usually performs only one function: to illuminate the area ahead with a single, fixed beam of light. Light & Motion’s GoBe flashlight, on the other hand, with its choice of six different screw-on heads, laughs in the faces of all these competitors.
This is a torch that’s able to adapt to a huge range of activities. And, in the tradition of Apple’s 3G commercial: whether you’re scuba diving, hiking, kayaking or biking, there’s a head for that.
So how do the six attachments differ? Here’s a list:
- 700 Spot – This head is designed to offer a compromise between an accurate spot of light and a wide beam – not too narrow, but also focused enough to give some distance to the beam.
- NightSea – Probably the coolest of the bunch, this adaptor is designed to be used (the clue’s in the name) at night and in the sea. There are two options: either you make use of the white beam, which is designed for use while ‘night-diving, exploring, or rock-hunting’, or you turn on the blue light in order to attract underwater fluorescence. These are the spectacular proteins and chemicals which fluoresce under blue light, creating a dazzling underwater light show. If you haven’t seen it before, type ‘sea water fluorescence’ into Google.
- 500 Search – This head is designed to maximise beam distance. Perfect for search and rescue, signalling, or cave diving.
- 500 Spot – Same as the 700 spot, but less bright (the number refers to the amount of lumens emitted by the torch).
- 700 Wide – The GoBe range’s widest beam, this one gives a broad, evenly distributed beam of light. Suited to illuminating large areas such as the space around your tent.
- Focus – Like the 700 Wide, this gives a wide beam of light, except that in the Focus’s case, this light is red, meaning your night vision is preserved. Light & Motion recommend this head for wildlife and underwater photographs.
A variety of different situations then, all of which are covered by the GoBe flashlight. And the torch’s adaptability is further increased by a handlebar clasp, which is included in the price, as well as optional additional fittings including a tripod and a headlamp.
The torch is rechargeable and includes a USB charging dock, and charging times range between 3-6 hours depending on the plug used. Other neat features include a lock (so you don’t accidentally switch the torch on inside your bag) and a battery indicator. In fact, the latter may be one of the torch’s most important features, especially if you’re diving around in caves.
Of course, with all these features comes a retail price that would cause even the Olympic torch to tremble: around £120 – £200 depending on the model, and this is for the one-headed torch alone. Additional heads are not yet on sale but look to cost around £60 each.
So to those for whom cave-diving, rock-hunting, mountain-biking or and rescue operations are a daily occurrence, the GoBe could be a shrewd investment. For everybody else, however, it’s probably best to stick to the Maglite.