July 27, 2009

Milwaukee M12 LED Worklight - Review

milwaukee_led_light.jpgMilwaukee recently entered the 12-volt fray with a work light and because it's an LED, according to Milwaukee, it's twice as bright as a regular incandescent bulb. The light has a good, solid, ready-for-the-job-site feel to it and it fits the hand just like a lightsaber would (our second Star Wars reference in a week!). It has a small magnet along the handle and the head pivots 90 degrees with seven hard stops along the way, making it very easy to direct the light. It also can stand up on the battery end, aiding the process as well.

And what a light it is. It's absolutely blinding and we're suspicious of the claim that it's twice as bright as a regular light. To us, it seems about ten times brighter. And not only is this thing bright, it's focused too. Even at 50' away the line between what is being lit and what isn't is very clearly defined. In fact, it reminds us of the spotlight from a 1960s prison movie or the cartoon intro to the Pink Panther movies. There's no gray area with this light, when it's on there's the area that looks like daylight and the area that is black.

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We had it at work for a while and in that setting it's ideal. The magnet lets it hang nicely from a metal stud or a pipe and the pivoting head does the rest. We had to cut a hole in the ceiling of a little curtain pocket where there was no way to fit us, our Fein, our ladder, and any sort of regular sized work light. So we took the Milwaukee and used the magnet to attach it to a metal junction box and easily completed our task. Without the tool, it would have been a real struggle.

milwaukee_led_optics.jpgWe also took it along for a few night time walks in the woods and there, if you can believe it, it was too bright. There was a good moon out so for the most part we relied on that but from time to time, we'd need to click the light on to find the path. The Milwaukee light would do such a number on our night vision that we would end up walking into things. It's sort of an odd circumstance, and not really one that many people are going to run into, so it's not a complaint, just an example of how bright this little guy is.

Oh, and we forgot to mention that it's very durable. We dropped it a few times and it never seemed fazed and when we were at Milwaukee HQ a while back a few guys were practically treating it like a soccer ball and it always kept on shining.

At almost 50 bucks (battery and charger not included) we're sure a lot of you are thinking "I can get a quality light for half that price. And you probably can, but it likely won't be as bright and it definitely won't be compatible with your other 12-volt Milwaukee tools.

At Amazon.com

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Posted by Doug Mahoney at July 27, 2009 5:17 AM

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