Overview_ For me a light needs to be a healthy balance of size and power. Thes rest of the features are pretty standard, unlikely to waiver from model to model. For a long time, the LD 11 held a permanent place in my EDC. After going through some low light tactical training I quickly realized it didn’t fit anymore. The search began for something that checked all the boxes and still had EDC functionality. Enter the PD 25, it looked like it had everything. So let’s compare and see how it stacks up.
Top/Cap_ There big draw here is the strike bezel. The main reason to look at the PD line for Fenix is if you are planning on leveraging it as a defensive tool. The cap here is pretty standard but one large benefit over the LD 11 is the two piece design. They did away with the removable cap which seemed to have little need to be removed and just added another O-ring to be replaced. This is a major positive. You will get their gold standard quality LED that pumps out a blistering 550 lumens well above what you expect from this size. The mode select butt is located near this end as well, it’s in a good spot and has just the right amount of tension to make sure you don’t accidentally switch modes but not so much you can’t manipulate it with a finger press. My only major concern here would be how waterproof is this part? since it sports the same waterproofing specs its likely not to affect much, and while not fully submerged excessive sweat from the day’s activities didn’t have any impact.
Sides_ The other noticeable difference from my LD 11 was a more ergonomic grip on the whole light. There was a curious bump near the cap that didn’t seem to offer much help on the grip and now with the PD 25 it has gone to more barrel design making it fit better in the hand. It’s worth mentioning that I have a rather large hand and this still fits, but I would not go any smaller in form factor if this is a defense tool. It’s just the right size for most but if you have abnormally large hands, you might want to consider going up a model. The addition output selection button is a welcome feature, generally, you had to cycle through options and without a memory this had to be done every time. Now we are given the option to select and stay in that setting. Very handy for tactical application when the max light is needed but can be stepped down for household activities. There is good heat dissipation when running on full, it will get warm but never got hot or felt like it was melting down. The clip still has some desired functionality, some might like the deep carry but I immediately miss the recoverable clip I had before. A light this size should have that, it was something I used all the time, strangely enough still not color matched.
Activation_ Fairly standard for most Fenix lights, I have never had an issue with any of my Fenix’s with button durability. They just hold up and are waterproof, there is little that has changed however the action on the button seems a little off. In comparison to my LD 11 there is a little “play” if you are momentarily activating. It isn’t quite enough to distract from functionality but it is worth mentioning and frankly, a little bit of shock based on the long history of quality and crisp tail caps that Fenix is known for. Beware of shorter run times if you need the full 550 lumens, 35 minutes won’t get you very far. The good news is you have the option of stepping the power down to 400 with the use of a CR123A, this means you still get some great power but the runtime jumps up to 1 hr 10 min. I ran the new rechargeable ARB L16 700U which was conveniently based on a battery pack I carry but the charge time seemed long, it was much shorter when I later plugged it into the laptop It’s certainly a nice feature to not have to carry spare batteries or crazy charging cables (I have enough already) and even in hot weather it didn’t overheat or shut down completely.
Pro’s_ affordable, great power for size, battery options/flexibility
Con’s_ short run times on max power, large hands beware, non-revisable clip
bottom line_ This is it. My new EDC light. A powerful combination of size, weight, and raw power. It exceeds almost every basic function I have been looking for and quirks aside nothing has distracted from the overwhelming positives. It took an irregular amount of abuse since I had trained with it a full day, I was shocked to see it hold up much better than expected without scratching, overheating, or failure. This is likely the everyman light, I feel like this could likely fit into and EDC, tactical use, around the house needs for man or woman. A very strong “must own” recommendation, get one here and don’t forget this too.