Well SHOT Show is still going on so there are probably a few more announcements coming, but 4sevens has three major announcements that have made it out of Vegas so far. In my opinion all three are disappointments, marking the first time I can remember where 4sevens completely missed the boat with product releases and designs.
First up, 4sevens has decided to join the "tactical pen" market which, as you know from a previous post, I think are kind of silly. Here is the product page for their tactical pen. When I saw it I was little underwhelmed, especially for the price. Then a clever forum member at EDCF pointed out why this was so underwhelming. This is a rebadge of an already existing pen, found here. The original is exactly the same minus the stupid glass breaker tip and it costs around $30 less. I'd prefer the original even if they were the same price, as the "glass breakers" usually end up being used more often as a "leg poker" than their intended use.
Second, is the Preon P0. Here is the product page. This is clearly aimed at the Arc AAA-P, Fenix E05 market--cheap, low lumens, long lasting keychain lights. On low, 24 lumens, it lasts for an impressive 120 hours. On high, 25 lumens, it lasts 1.2 hours. Huh? Right. The specs must be screwed up or something because that makes no sense. It is cheap, around $25, but the competition here is stiff. The Arc AAA-P is a great light. The Fenix E05, a light I got my nephews for Christmas, is an amazingly good buy (and for them an awesome primary flashlight; they are 5 and 2). Maybe there is something we are missing, but if not, I am not sure the Preon P0 will have any market impact at all. Especially with new challengers like the Olight i-series lights out there and stuff like the super tiny DGQ AAA.
CORRECTION: I am a moron. The low is POINT 24 lumens or about a quarter of a lumen, which makes a whole lot more sense. Still, even with that, this is a BORING light. The magnet on the end is actually a neat idea, useful in machining and woodworking (giving you a portable spotlight for your stationary power tools). But that cannot save this light. It is just not the innovative new product design you expect from 4sevens.
Third, is the announcement that they will be releasing for sale their latest gigalight (I am trademarking that term, so don't even think about stealing it) 18,000 lumen XM-18. Here is a video from last year's SHOT show:
Awesome light. No question. But really how many people are going to buy this thing? Even more to the point, how many people are going to actually USE this thing? And once they do use it and post the beam shots on CPF, what will they do after that? Nothing. And then the price will probably be staggering. Great technical feat, truly, but so what?
4sevens does make great products, but what's leaked out from SHOT show 2012 so far has been less than impressive. Let's hope they have other stuff we haven't seen yet. Also, the badge swap on the tactical pen with the $30 price increase is really kinda bullshit. They still have the best value lights out there, so this stumble isn't a fatal one, but something of a big let down.
Here is a good application for the XM18 (thanks to a reader comment below):