Fenix Flashlights | Best Camping Lantern

Hello! This is Jacob with Fenix-Store, here today covering our great line of Fenix flashlight camping lanterns. We have several lanterns to choose from in different sizes. They're all really good for different applications, so let's go over some of the basic on what makes the Fenix products the best camping lanterns.

Best Lantern for General Use 

fenix cl20r mini camping lantern

*The CL20 is discontinued. Check out it's upgrade: the Fenix CL20R camping lantern.

First of all, we've got the smallest and the most price conscious option, the Fenix Flashlight CL20 camping lantern (discontinued. Recommended replacement: Fenix CL20R rechargeable camping lantern), which retails for $29.95, and has a maximum output of 165 lumens. This light comes in both an olive green and a sky blue color. It's kind of like an icy blue tone. It's kind of a dome lantern, so you got the bottom base and then an upper dome part where the light comes out. Again, we've got 165 lumens. All three of these camping lanterns will be very cold resistant, allowing you to not worry about hiking through the mountains or going out into the winter time, or anything like that.

The CL20 camping lantern is able to use either a single CR123A battery or two AA batteries. These cannot be used in conjunction, but you do have the option of the two AAs' or the single CR123. The lantern will work to an operating temperature of down to -40 degrees, so again, you don't have to worry about the cold seasons.

It has a neutral white light output plus two red light settings. It features a magnet on the bottom that will allow you to easily attach it to any sort of metal surface. You can attach it to the side of your car whenever you arrive at your campsite or anything like that. It also has a very nice easy hanging loop so you can tie a rope up and hang it down or hang it from the roof of your tent, or anything like that.

The maximum lumen output is 165 lumens and that will last you for about three hours. Then we have the high lumen output at 100 lumens. That will last you about four. The mid lumen output is 50 lumens and will last you about nine hours, and the low output setting is 8 lumens, and that will last you about fifty seven hours.

Then you also have the red lighting. We have a constant on red light and a flashing red light, both 1.5 lumens, and that will last you about twenty four hours, so a full day of red light, which is especially great in an emergency situation. You can have that SOS red light going for an entire day if need be.

It is waterproof to IPX6 standards, and that is protecting against heavy splashes and rain, so you don't have to worry about it getting damaged from the rain, or even getting splashed whenever you're going through a river or something like that, just as long as you don't submerge it.

A couple of customer questions being answered here. One person did ask about if it will use the rechargeable RCR123A battery. No, it will only take the CR123A, the regular, non-rechargeable battery. And then ... Another question was about using the AA and CR123 batteries together. As I said before, the answer to that is No. You do have to either use one CR123A or two AA batteries. You can't use both at the same time.

Best Camping Lantern 


fenix cl26r camping lantern

*The CL25R is discontinued. Check out the Fenix CL26R best camping lantern.

Next on the list we have our mid-range camping lantern, which is the Fenix CL25R lantern (discontinued. Recommended replacement: Fenix CL26R). It retails for $59.95 and it is available in the same olive color as the CL20, but also in a black color as well. It is definitely our best-selling camping lantern.

Just like the CL20, it is very cold resistant. You don't have to worry about the light being damaged by the cold, so you can use it outdoors during the winter or on a mountain trek, or anything like that. The CL25R has some of it's own really great features. First of all, it comes with an 18650 battery, which really helps to bring down the entry cost of this light. You don't have to buy it, plus the battery. It comes with an 18650 battery and it also charges directly inside the lantern, via a micro USB port, so you also don't have to buy any chargers or anything like that, for that battery.

The CL25 has a maximum output of 350 lumens, and that will last you about two hours. Then you have the high setting of 200 lumens. That will last you about five. Mid setting at 50 lumens, will last you twenty four hours. Then the low moonlight setting of .8 lumens will last you about six hundred hours. The CL25R also has a red flashing and red constant mode at 1.5 lumens. That will last you about forty-four hours.

While the CL25R is a little bit larger than the CL20, it is a cylindrical shape, rather than a dome shape. It's still very compact and it features a nice easy hanging loop. You can use a carabiner to attach it to a backpack, or your tent, or anything like that. And it also has that really great magnetic base to attach to your car if you'd like to. It's not going to weigh you down. You can attach it to the backpack and not worry about the extra weight because it is only 4.5 ounces in weight, so it's really not heavy at all, for that 350 lumen output setting. It's really quite great and in our opinion, the best camping lantern available on the market today.

An additional feature that the CL25R camping lantern has over the CL20, is that the base has a tripod mount screw. So if you have a tripod, whether it's the larger photography tripod or a miniature traveling tripod, you can screw that in at the base and have a raised level of light. Now the CL25R has, as I said, the cold resistance, this one down to even -40 degrees Celsius, so very very cold resistant. Not going to have to worry about the cold hurting the light.

A couple of customer questions about this light is wondering about the 18650 batteries that it takes. It does come with the standard, button-top, 18650 Fenix battery, but it will also work with a flat-top 18650 battery as well. It does come with the button-top on those.

You can also light it up while it's charging to the lower two settings, so if you have a portable power bank and you need to plug in the CL25R to recharge while you're out and about but it's nighttime. You can still have the lower settings on. That means you will have both the .8 moonlight setting and the 50 lumen setting available to you, even while it is charging. So, even whenever you're charging it up, you won't be without light, if you have that extra power bank.

Brightest and Best Camping Lantern

fenix cl30r rechargeable best camping lantern


Closing us out, we've got the Fenix CL30R. This is our largest of the 3 camping lanterns. It has a maximum output of, very very impressive, up to 650 lumens. Then we've also got a high setting of 350, more applicable to most situations. The reason I say that is if you had the lantern at ground level, at 650 lumens, you would actually kind of have trouble seeing around it. It's very bright at nighttime. The 650 lumens setting really shines if you have a place to put it up above your campsite. It does have a hanging loop just like the others, so if you tie up a rope or something high up, and then hang it from there, the 650 lumen setting will really light up your entire campsite. But, it does have the high setting at 350 lumens and that's the same brightness as the CL25R and that's just if you have it in your hand or have it at ground level, it'd be really great to use the 350 lumen level, so a little easier on your eyes at night. But still, a very very impressive source of light.

You also have the mid setting at 100 lumens and the low setting at 50 lumens, eco-setting at 10 lumens, and then we have a 100 lumen flashing mode as well. The CL30R retails for $109.95 and it comes in either a black or any iron gray color. It comes with, and uses, three 18650 batteries, just like the CL25R. That would be three button top 18650s or three flat-top 18650s. And the highest lumen output, the 650 lumens, that will last you for about six hours, twelve hours on high, 50 on medium, 93 on low, and incredible four hundred hours, on the ten lumen eco-setting.

It has a 115 foot diameter wide beam that, like I was saying, if you put that 650 lumen output up high above your campsite, you'll be able to see , absolutely the entire campsite. And the best thing that is really great for that, is the CL30R also has a tripod mount on the base. So just like the CL25R, you can mount it kind of high and raise that tripod up and use that 650 lumens to really light up everything you need.

The Fenix Flashlight CL30R, just like the CL25R, is micro USB rechargeable and it'll charge up with just a micro USB cord, so you can use a power bank, or plug it into a wall, or anything like that, and that will be really easy power. You can use it anywhere you need to. The added feature, an extra feature, of the CL30R that the CL25R does not have though, is that having the three 18650 batteries actually allows for you to charge other devices from the CL30R, through a micro USB cord. So if you're out in the woods and your phone dies, and you need your phone or maybe a GPS system or something like that, as long as that item charges with just your standard micro USB cord, you can pull power from those batteries inside of the CL30R in an emergency situation, and charge your other devices with that. And that is a really really great survival tool. It's a really good option to have.

That concludes our overview of the Fenix camping lantern series, the CL20, CL25R, and CL30R, camping lanterns. So, if you have any questions about our Fenix camping lanterns or any of our other Fenix flashlights, just comment, send us an email, or anything like that and we'd be happy to help you out anytime. Hopefully you will try one out and see for yourself why Fenix makes the best camping lantern on the market! Thank you very much and you have a great day.