LIGHT Treble-Light Silverline MX6
MY FRIEND TOOK ALONG A FEARSOMELY BRIGHT DIVING LIGHT when the two of us travelled to Cocos Island. It was also fearsomely big and heavy. I know, because when we found ourselves over the 128kg checked baggage limit at Heathrow, I offered to stow it in my hand luggage.
     Im having all the sleeves of my sweaters lengthened now, to suit my newly extended arms.
     His diving light was one of those super-teutons, made in Germany. When he turned it on at full power, it turned our night dives into day dives, so he always used it at a quarter setting.
     I, because I am much smarter, chose to take a far more modest diving light with me.
     The new importer of Treble-Lights, also made in Germany, offered to let me borrow any one of the immense range of models now available in the UK bearing that badge.
     She was bemused when I told her that I would prefer an entry-level model rather than something that would evoke a frying tonight image when I switched it on.
     But that was because I remembered using a Treble-Light HID lamp years ago, and although at the time it was the first HID lamp I had encountered, the memory of its considerable weight and size still lingered.
     Watt for watt, HID lamps are incredibly bright and Treble-Light makes a huge range. It also makes a selection of lamps with halogen bulbs.
     The Silverline MX6 is a 6V, 20W halogen lamp. Its Treble-Lights most modest lamp and its small enough to stow in a BC pocket. But dont confuse modesty with effectiveness. I found that the beam was narrow enough to be very useful. It has a simple rotating switch with a big knob (sorry, Ive been reading Frank Skinners autobiography!) that can be locked to prevent accidental use.
     It has a hardened glass lens, which means that it can be switched on long before entering the water. It has a charge-at-any-time ni-mh battery with electronic protection to prevent damage by deep discharge.
     It comes with an automatic charger that will fully charge a unit from flat in five hours.
     The 15cm-long barrel is made from aluminium and, in order to connect the charger, you unscrew the base by rotating the strong cast-aluminium handle. Its protected from flooding by two O-rings.
     The lamp itself is a 6V halogen unit of the type commonly used in domestic low-voltage lighting systems - though be sure not to replace it with a 12V version! It weighs about 750gm out of the water and, by fitting the neoprene sleeve provided, it becomes almost neutrally buoyant in water.
     This is a useful and hard-wearing lamp that will suit many leisure divers, especially those who enjoy night diving. Its not really bright enough to compete with tropical sunshine and light up the reef in full-spectrum colour. You will need one of its big brothers for that.
     Burntime is just about one hour. That means you will need to be sure that the Silverline MX6 is fully charged before jumping off into the night, and I would suggest taking a small back-up torch with you (see the Ikelite PCm test below) for use at the surface, should you dive long enough to fully discharge it.
     The importer is unusual in that it is a travel company. Whats the connection Nikola, who runs Snooba Travel, is German and has the connections in Frankfurt.
     With the vision of a new Europe, Frankfurt is only as far away from London as, for example, Glasgow. I expect aftersales service to be as efficient as only the Germans can make it!
The Treble-Light Silverline MX6 costs £165.
  • Snooba Travel 0870 162 0767, www.snooba.com

  • Divernet
    The Silverline MX6 is the most modest light in the Treble-Light range
    + A strongly built yet lightweight lamp
    + Useful night-diving performance

    - Not bright enough for some uses