In the consumer electronics market, good products become great products when they provide the end user with choices. Consumers that care about the use of their firearms demand that the products they depend on conform to their personal preferences — not the other way around.
As far as firearm-mounted electronics are concerned, LaserMax strives to pioneer its market segment. The company recently debuted a new GripSense Activation technology and infused it with the CenterFire light-and-laser combo for compact defensive handguns.
The initial release was designed to fit Smith & Wesson's ever-popular M&P Shield and Ruger's LC9 single-stack pistols. Each model is available with either a red or green laser paired with LaserMax's dimmable mint-green light-emitting diode (LED).
How it works: A detection zone beneath the triggerguard, just forward of the frontstrap recognizes when a user is starting to grip the pistol. It instantly activates the light, laser or both — depending on how you programmed it — even with gloved hands. The profile of the housing around the triggerguard is minimal and won't interfere with a traditional grip. When GripSense is active, there are no pressure switches to press, which means a natural firing grip is all that's needed to turn on the unit's features.
LaserMax's programmable activation technology allows the sensor to be deactivated if desired and provides the user with a pair of traditional push-buttons to toggle the unit on or off, or deactivate it altogether. And the light/laser features can be modified at any time without adjusting your firing grip. Simply use your trigger finger or support-hand thumb to turn the unit off or back on again.
The CenterFire is lightweight (1½ ounces) yet durable, thanks to its no-snag fiberglass-reinforced nylon housing. The unit mounts to the dustcover and triggerguard of the pistol without permanent modification and is ambidextrous to operate. The mint-green LED emits 100 lumens of light at maximum power, which could be enough to temporarily blind an assailant. Further, the light intensity can be adjusted down to just 3 lumens, if desired.
The red or green laser can be programmed to remain on when activated, or it can be set to an eye-catching pulse setting. The laser is simple to zero to the host pistol. Windage and elevation adjustments are located on the right side of the unit and require the use of an Allen wrench (included).