I RECENTLY picked up a Goal Zero Torch 250 Flashlight from Country2Coast 4×4 and what a fantastic bit of kit it is.
Speaking with Ty and Jason from Country2Coast, the guys described the Torch 250 as a power hub first and a torch second.
But hang on, what is Goal Zero and where did it come from? It’s an American company that was founded in 2009 with the philosophy of “putting reliable power into every human hand on this earth without overwhelming our resources”.
Goal Zero is all about portable power, offering a variety of products to suit adventurous types.
Back to the aptly named Torch 250 (combined LED light output of 250 lumens) – weighing a scant 408g, you won’t be weighed down as you trek across Australia’s many remote destinations. The Torch 250 can be charged in three ways: by the sun, using the in-built solar panel or through connecting to a compatible portable solar panel such as the Goal Zero Nomad 7 (full recharge takes seven to 14 hours with a Nomad or 23-46 hours through the in-built panel alone); by USB power source, using the attached USB cord (about seven hours for recharge); and by hand cranking using the device’s hand crank (one minute of cranking for about two minutes of light).
Despite its relatively small size, this device has the punch to fully recharge most smartphones in about two hours, and it can do this twice before needing to be recharged either by the sun or through the USB connection. I allowed my iPhone 6 battery to drain to 17 percent before plugging it into the Torch 250 and within 30 minutes I’d reached 50 percent battery level, which I consider a fairly commendable result for a quick booster charge.
Four blue LEDs on the base of the Torch 250 inform you of its battery capacity when in use (lights go out one by one as the battery drops), making it easy to know how much charging potential you have remaining. You’ll know you’ve got the solar panel absorbing energy when the blue lights begin flashing, likewise when plugging into a USB power source to recharge.
In terms of light output, the Torch 250 generates 180 lumens from its spotlight and 70 lumens from the floodlight. I can tell you with confidence that they provide plenty of light, whether working on the car or setting up camp for the night. High and low power settings for both lights allow you to maximise either illumination or battery life depending on the situation. Red emergency lights will also prove handy in a sticky situation and a metal hanger is useful for positioning the light.
Its rugged, water-resistant construction ensures the Torch 250 will go anywhere you do. Whether used as a power hub, torch or both, the Goal Zero Torch 250 is the perfect companion for a trip off the beaten track. And with a RRP of just $119, the Torch 250 represents outstanding value for money.
For more information and to check out the Goal Zero range, visit Country2Coast 4×4 at Unit 6, 5-11 Jardine Dr, Redland Bay, call 07 3829 1258 or visit www.country2coast4x4.com.au