EDC Flashlight Reviews Review Reviews

Lumintop ODF30 (26650 Flood, XPH 70.2, 3500 Lumens)

It’s been a long time since I have tested a Lumintop Light. Today I have the Lumintop ODF30 to take a look at. It’s a palm sized flood light that runs off of a 26650 battery using a Cree XHP 70.2 LED for an impressive 3500 lumens in Turbo. Thanks to Banggood for sending this to me, let’s take a closer look.

Full Image Gallery: https://imgur.com/a/jcyMafN

YouTube Version of this Review: (How do you like my new background?)

Packaging
The Lumintop packaging is very nice. The ODF30 comes in a nicely refind brown box with some details on the rear, the accessories including extra orings, orange lanyard, and holster are in a small separate box. The light itself is in a custom fit foam insert with a piece of clear plastic covering the lense. A 26650 battery is not included.






Construction
This light is made from aluminum and is finished with a dry flat black anodizing. Starting at the tail cap, It is flat and non magnetic. The light does tail stand well. Grip on the tail cap and body is blocky. It’s large milled squares in what I would call medium grip. It’s a unique look that I have not seen many other lights. The light doesn’t have any anitroll features built in.The light does come into two pieces, as it’s glued to the head.


The button is a positive click, covered by a rubber button. The head itself has quite a bit of groves for heat dissipation around it. On top the light has a polished steel bezel that’s smooth. The lens is a clear fairly thick mineral glass that’s not anti reflective coated. There is the signature Lumintop Red Oring that’s visible too.The reflector itself is pretty deep and has a nice orange peel on it. The LED below is nicely centered with a large dome on it.


Threads are square cut and anodized. My orings were greased but the threads were not. There is only one spring in the light connected to the driver board. The tail cap has a proud brass contact. Batteries are installed with the positive side facing the front of the light. I was using a KeepPower Protected 26650 and it’s a bit too long and dented the positive end slightly.

Length, Width, Weights, IPX
Maximum Length lenght is 119.5mm, maximum diameter at the head is 42mm, minimum diameter is 29.32mm on the body. Weight with the KeepPower 4500mAh battery I was running is 236 Grams or 133 Grames without battery. The light is rated for IPX8.

LED + Temps + Runtime
This light uses a Cree XHP 70.2 LED in cool white. It has a large dome on the LED. The LED didn’t have a Cree Rainbow as other XHP 70’s I have had have. Edges on the beam shots were fairly well controlled and it’s mostly a flood beam.

Runtimes were impressive for the ODF30. Turbo is timed to 3 minutes during which time it heats up. High lasted quite a while at about 20 minutes. Output did sag a little (still above 90% relative output) but before it stepped down to middle output. Middle output was about 140 minutes at about 65% output. At the end instead of stepping down and running on low the light seems to do a flashing a few times and shutting off. When it shut off it was still pretty warm to the touch, borderline uncomfortable. I used a KeepPower 26650 battery with this light that was rated for 4500mah.
 (Forget the slight dip upfront I had a problem with my sphere)

I ran another test 30 minutes from Turbo and generated an output curve for that shows that 3 minutes more in depth. You get a drop off pretty quickly but then it slows down the output drops taking slow steps. After about 8 minutes the light is pretty stedy for the remaining 35 minutes. At the end here the light was hot. I measured it at 124F uncooled which is uncomfortable to hold onto. If I was holding this I would have turned it down well before it got this hot. Parasitic Drain was measured at 3.2uA

UI
Ui is overly simple on this light. Low, medium, high in that order. When in high, double click to go to turbo. Eco mode (Still too high for my taste) is accessed when the light is off by long pressing the button till the light comes on. To shut it off while on requires a long press (2 seconds). Tho light also has Strobe but it can only be accessed from Eco Mode by double clicking to reach strobe. I like that strobe isn’t a part of the main group but this is a little awkward.

Lockout mode is also available. When the light is off long press for 4 seconds and the light will flash to enter lockout. To unlock requires unscrewing the tail cap. That’s certainly a different way to unlock and it’s not my favorite. Unscrewing the tail cap to mechanically lock it out seems more intuitive to me.

The light has low voltage reminder by flashing the LED under the button. This is a little hard to see if you don’t notice it. It comes on under 3V.

Compared to the Thrunite TC20
Size wise this is pretty similar to my Thrunite TC20 I reviewed. Both are floods with similar beam patterns. The Thrunite is a bit more expensive but it includes a 26650 battery, has onboard charging and is available with a Neutral white LED. Size wise they are very similar, I would give a slight advantage in build feel to the Lumintop. For me the Thrunite wins by a hair due to the neutral white LED which I prefer. Brightness wise to the eyes they are very similar.

Conclusion
This is a nicely built handheld flood. I like the 26650 format. It fits nicely in the hand while providing a large amount of light for whatever task you need. This makes a great handheld hiking/camping light with it’s long runtime or around the house work light/emergency light too. It’s not something most people will EDC in a pocket due to its size but it would work on the included holster for this. The XHP 70.2 LED in this is largely free of artifacts and color abnormalities I have seen with other similar lights.

For me lack of onboard charging isn’t a big deal because I have a few chargers that can accomodate 26650 cells. I would prefer the light to be slightly longer and use springs on both ends so that it doesn’t dent a protected battery that’s are a little longer. I would also like to see polarity markings. None of these are deal breakers nor do they detract much from a nice light. I do like that the 26650 battery format is starting to gain wider use in more and more lights.

Thanks to Banggod for sending this light for me to review. They have offered me some coupons if if you are interested in this light be sure to check them out.

Get $13 off the Lumintop ODF30 with coupon code: b3131d at https://goo.gl/cN2WBH

Get $2 off the KeepPower 26650 battery with coupon code: 6e5463 at https://goo.gl/rsf2Wx

8% off universal coupon for flashlight @ Banggood using code? Forolinternas

EDC Flashlight Reviews Review Reviews

FiTorch M30R Tactical Flashlight (1800 Lumens, 18650, USB Recharging/Powerbank)

A few weeks back I reviewed the FiTorch ER16 and was impressed with it. FiTorch is a relatively new brand but the execution of their design and manufacture is like they have been doing it for years. Today I have the new FiTorch M30R to look at. This is a full size tactical light that emphasizes USB recharging. Thanks to FiTorch for sending me an early release example.

Full Image Gallery For this Review: https://imgur.com/a/FqkZ5KA

YouTube Version of this Review: https://youtu.be/jguBIVzJe3k

Packaging & Accessories

Packaging on the FiTorch is typical hanging style retail box and filled with lots of product information on all of the sides.

 Inside the light comes comes with several extras.  First you get a button top 3400mah FiTorch branded battery, that’s also microUSB rechargeable itself. Next lanyard with stop button, an extra rear center button and oring.  The light include a nice holster. It’s nylon but has an inner layer of neoprene padding. It has a velcro front closure and a button belt loop with no D-Ring.   Lastly the light includes a microUSB to full size USB port to allow you use the light as a powerbank to charge a portable electronic.  I like this adapter with the included keychain better then larger cable that the ER16 had.

Construction

The construction of the FiTorch M30R is quite nice. Machining, fit and finish are is on par with Olight I would say.  The light is made from aluminium and hard anodized in a semi gloss finish. Starting at the head of the flashlight it has a crenelated raw aluminium bezel with fairly sharp edges. The lens is thick glass that doesn’t appear to have traditional anti reflective coating on it. The reflector is deep and smooth. The LED is nicely centered. The head has some nice milled areas in it that are for style mostly, Below that is the multifunction aluminum button with the LED indicator ring around it. It has a nice concentric circle pattern milled into it. Directly opposite the button is the micro USB port that can be used to charge the light or for it to use as a powerbank function.  This USB port is at normal depth and standard cables can be used.

The barrel of the light has the concentric grip pattern that I liked on the ER16. It looks great but isn’t the most grippy and worth noting on a tactical light. The clip is stiff, removable, but non reversible and non deep carry. The tail cap has more of the concentric grip with 6 areas milled out to provide more grip.

The very back of the tail has a rotating ring that has a locked, unlocked, locked position. This is a mechanical lock for the paddle switches on the very end that activate strobe. The detent is fairly light and I would like to see just a little more detent on these as it’s fairly easy for this to rotate. The very back of the light has a raised rubber button in the center that is On/Off in turbo. There are also two paddles on either side that activate strobe. More on this in the UI section of the review. There are also two loops where a lanyard can be added. Normal sized paracord should fit here but it would be a bit tight. Due to the center button this light won’t tail stand well. Threads on the tail cap are ACME cut and orings are beefy. They came nicely greased. On the inside there are springs on each end, on the tail cap it’s a dual spring. The light uses a dual wall construction similar to the Olight M2R. The head is not removable.

Size + Weight

This isn’t a small light. This is noticed most in the length that came in at 163mm, width at it’s largest point is 37mm in the head, and minimum diameter is 24mm on the body tube. Weight was 216g With the included battery. It is IPX8 rated and drop resistant to 2M. If I compare it in size to the Olight M2R the M30R is quite a bit larger in all dimensions.  The two are both tactical lights but the M2R is still EDC able where for me at I would need to use the pouch that came with the M30R on my belt to be considered an EDC.

LED + Runtimes

This light uses a Cree XHP 35 HD LED in cool white.  It has a deep smooth reflector covered with a thick mineral glass lens that does not have an anti reflective coating. The driver uses constant current so flicker isn’t an issue. Modes spacing is as follows.

Turbo is 1800 Lumens, High is 460 Lumens, Medium is 130 Lumens, Low is 20 Lumens. Strobe is 1800 Lumens, SOS is 460 Lumens. This is pretty even to the eye which I like. This light does a really nice fade between modes which I really like.

Beamshot has a small defined hotspot with rings as it spreads out on the spill.  I think these are the creation of the reflector and the front bezel’s polished nature. With the hot spot this light throws well as you would expect for a general purpose tactical light. FiTorch claims 328 meters. I measured parasitic drain at at 1.7uA.

Like most lights this timed down from turbo after about 4 minutes and ran at 48% of output for about 95 minutes. Further step downs were done in small steps over about 20 minutes.  That is nice you don’t have sudden fall offs of light output other then turbo. Total runtime was 170 minutes before LVP kicked in.

UI

The UI of this light is easiest to understand if we split it into what each button does. Starting at the front the multimode button is the normal flashlight modes and functions. From off if you press the side switch for about 1 second to turn it on in Low, quick presses will then allow you to move up in modes through medium, high, and turbo. Instead of cycling over, once you reach turbo pressing again will go to medium and continue down. Think of it as ramping but not infinite brightness. Strobe and SOS are not part of the main mode group. To activate them when the light is on a quick double click will go to strobe or SOS. To get the other (Strobe or SOS) exit by pressing and holding the button and then enter the Strobe SOS mode again with a double click. Pressing the button quickly 3 times from off will show a voltage check via the LED indicator ring and turn the light on low. The light also has a location beacon mode that flashes on and off every few second using the indicator ring and to activate that press 4 times in the off position.

The rear 3 switches are used for tactical mode in addition to the lock ring on the tail cap. When locked only the center button is able to work. The center button is a direct to turbo full 1800 lumens. When you unlock the tactical lock ring each of the paddles are capable of working in strobe at a full 1800 lumens. These work no matter what mode the light is in. So if you were in low mode and needed turbo just press the center button, and if it was unlocked just press a paddle to get to strobe.

No special batteries are required for this light to work. Flat tops work, as well as NCR18650B, so no high drain cells are required for Turbo. 2X CR123A are also an option for this light but it’s not rated for higher then 6V so two 18350 isn’t an option.

Charging

Apart from its tactical side, this light is all about USB recharging. On the light itself it has a Micro USB port  that allows for recharging at 2A speed. The button indicator  is blinking green during charging and solid green when charged before it shuts off. All tests were performed using the included FiTorch 3500mah battery and supplied cable, with an Anker QuickCharge 3.0 power adapter. Charging time from LVP cutoff to 100% using the external USB port was took 2 hours and 20 minutes. Most of the charging was between 1.8 and 2A.

The battery also has the ability to recharge directly via micro USB  but it’s much slower then recharging in the light. It has a Red and Green LED on top of the battery to give indication of charging or charged. I tested with the same charger as above but only received a maximum charging speed of 0.82A, and decreased as the battery reached capacity. Total time was a relatively long 5 hours 32 minutes.

The light can also be used to recharge another electronic device via the MicroUSB to full size USB adapter  and the appropriate cable for your device. I tested with my phone and was able to charge my Note 8 from 28% to 81% at 1.7A charging speed during this time the light got warm to the touch. While in powerbank mode you can use the light in low or medium modes as well.

Pro

  • Standard depth micro USB port allowing the use of standard cables.

  • Really nice machining and fit and finish.

  • Very nice fade between modes.

Con

  • I would like to see a strong detent on the strobe lockout from the tail switch.

  • I would like to see the Location beacon setting be a bit smoother in its on and off, similar to the Astrolux MF01.

Summary

FiTorch is definitely an up and coming brand that is paying a lot of attention to detail and execution in their machining and tolerances. As a newer brand they are doing a better job of this then many of the older brands they compete with. My hope is that they will start to offer some Neutral White LED options in the near future.

The M30R is a nice light, that’s designed with a purpose. This isn’t your typical in the pocket EDC light. Instead it’s designed for a more tactical use. Personally I am not a big user of strobe. However if you are the rear lockout allows you to get to strobe very easily. I wish this detent was a bit stronger so that it’s less easy to activate strobe. The interface is decent, with room for improvement. I like how the USB recharging is fast and uses a standard depth connector so a standard cable can be used. The LED and reflector combo seem to create a slight donut at distance that I can tell on wall, but less so outside. Overall a nice light for those needing tactical above practical.

Banggood has offered a discount coupon for $36 off the FiTorch M30R using the following link https://goo.gl/6EpH25 with coupon ‘a03396’ Learn more at http://www.fitorchworld.com/index.php?case=archive&act=show&aid=93

Flashlight Reviews Review Reviews

Folomov A4 Review

I previously have tested the Folomov EDC C4 flashlight and thought it was solid. Folomov also makes chargers and here is their largest, fastest charging model, the Folomov A4, that’s capable of a combined 8A across the slots with a max per slot of 3A.

Full Image Gallery: https://imgur.com/a/ooUgsp4
YouTube Version of this Review: 

Build Quality Build quality seems pretty solid no major complaints. It’s injection molded ABS plastic. It’s sturdy and seams fit together nicely. On the back is the 12V input connector. It’s a little loose in the connection and with the included power supply doesn’t fit quite as far in as I would like. On the bottom there are what look to be vent holes but they are purely cosmetic as they are not cut through to allow air flow nor is there a fan. 

I did have one issue with one of the spring loaded slots with the spring coming disconnected. I was able to easily disassemble and reattach it. The spring slots are a little rough when you pull them back, not as smooth as my Xtar VC4 or Nitecore chargers. That said they work well on a wide variety of cells, anything I tried including a 20700.




The display is inverse of many LCD panels. It’s background is black and the display characters are white. It’s easy to read and decent sized. I like that each cell gets it’s own dedicated spot on the display and you get the voltage all the time.

One thing I wish it did have was little rubber feet. I like to charge on a piece of granite tile and all my other chargers have rubber feet that keeps them from sliding around the table when inserting cells, the Folomov A4 doesn’t so you need to hold onto it with one hand while installing a cell with the other.

Display & UI
When you plug in the charger if there isn’t a cell in the slot you get a “null” message. Upon putting in a cell it will default to 250ma charging which is slow. You just have to press the button once and it goes to 500ma, press again for 1000ma, again for 2000ma, and again for 3000mah if available. The UI here is a little slow, you can’t double click to jump up in rates faster you have to press and wait. It’s not that big of deal for me but something to know about. Each bay is independent as well.

Instead of working from a bank of 8A and the charger deducting amounts as you insert cells, this charger let’s you set each bay as high as you want and takes power from other cells. For example say I charge Bay 1 at 3A, Bay 2 at 3A, it would let me insert a cell into Bay 3 and set it to 3A but since that’s over 8A total it would reduce Bay 1 to 2A without letting you know.

The charger will then analyze the cell and during this analysis phase the capacity in percentage you get may not be true. This is why I prefer voltage to look at. The same holds true for when it’s full. It will sit for quite a while at 98-99% at 4.2V on a lithium ion battery before ticking over to 100%. Not entirely sure why this is. It includes overvoltage protection too, a nice bit of safety. The charger also has 0V activation which I did not test.

How does it handle different sized cells
The A4 handles a wide variety of sizes of cells with ease. I tried everything from normal NiHM AAA, AA cells, to 16340, flat top 18350, and all the different types of 18650’s that I have including protected, unprotected, flat tops and button tops. I also tried a button top protected 26650 without an issue. Spacing on the A4 is large between bays so it can accept 4× 26650 at once which is fantastic as many 4 bay chargers can only accept two at a time.

The AC/DC adapter is a separate piece, it looks like a laptop style power supply. It’s fairly large and has long cables. It’s rated for 110-240V input power. Since this does look like a laptop power supply and it is not branded as Folomov, my advice would be to label the charger so you don’t get it mixed up with something else you may have.

Conclusion
This is a fairly simple charger but is fast for both Li-Ion and Nimh batteries. I would rate it as a good charger but not the best charger. It’s UI is a bit slow when changing charging rates. It seems to hit a wall at 98% with the last 2 percent taking longer than it feels like it should. It has a large external power supply but lots of cord length. The connector into the charger is looser then I would like. However these slight negatives are outweighed by the nice white text, black background LCD Screen, and total of 8A charge capacity, with a maximum of 3A per slot upto 8A total. I like how it can charge a wide selection of sizes of batteries and chemistries it can take. This is a safe charger that does the job well. I can recommend it as a good value fast charger.

Pick it up on Amazon (Referral) if you are interested.

EDC Flashlight Reviews Review Reviews

JetBeam HR30 Headlamp Review (USB-C, 20700 Compatible, Red+White LED’s)

This is my first light from Jetbeam that I have reviewed. It’s a new headlamp design from them and the first light I have tested with USB-C recharging. It’s really nice to see USB-C starting to make it’s way to flashlights as it’s the new standard. Thanks to Jetbeam for sending this to me to look closer at.

Full Image Gallery for this Review: https://imgur.com/a/pps2Oqk
The YouTube version of this Review:

Packaging
My packaging got a little mangled in international shipping but the just of it is a relatively large box with images of the light front and relevant info on the back regarding ratings and runtimes. Inside is a large plastic try housing the HR30 Headlamp, Jetbeam branded battery (2600mAh), unassembled head band and bracket, pocket clip, 2 spare O rings, a USB 3 to USB-C cable, relevant paperwork (Manual, warranty card). This is on par with Nitecore packaging but not up to Olight standards as of late.






Construction
The body of this light is built with aircraft aluminum that’s hard anodized. The part around the front with the button and LED is black plastic with a hexagon pattern in it that’s visually nice. It is held in place with 4 very small 0.050 inch hex screws. The button is rubber coated and clicky, the lens and main LED extend a bit. It’s a relatively small lens and reflector. The red LED are flush.

The body tube is flanked by two nicely machined end caps that are asymmetrical. They have spiral knurling that’s one direction and go in different ways from each other. This looks great but isn’t very grippy. The larger end that has the USB-C charging under it is magnetic enough to hold up the light and battery but not with the strap attached as well. The other end the tail cap has a spring under it to hold the battery in place and allow for the 3 types of batteries to be used in the light. Threads under each tail cap are standard design, relatively small and well greased from the factory. The central section of the light is ribbed. This when in the head strap is what holds the light in place and allows for rotational adjustment. The light has markings on each tail cap and some on the body. Each are helpful and less about marketing or legal phrases.




The head strap on this light is 3 strap design. The top strap is not removable due to the fused clips at each end. It comes partially disassembled. It’s a black and gray elastic with no additional reflectors or branding other then what look like flames. The front that actually holds the light is interesting. It’s built fairly stiff plastic with the strap providing the only padding on your forehead. The two hoops are injection inserted and a much more flexible rubber. To attach or detach the light remove each end cap and it slides on with some force. Not the easiest thing to do and it’s definitely a two handed job. The little triangle in the center is what holds the light in place as it rotates in the holder a full 160 degrees.



This light includes an optional clip. Less for EDC and more for clipping on to a pack or bag. It’s pretty stout and stiff and works well. The only negative is that you have to remove the headband prior to attaching the clip.

Weight as shipped with the included battery without strap or clip is 110G, with the 20700 battery it’s 124G.

This isn’t the lightest or smallest in it’s class but it’s not extreme either. I think it’s solidness and ability to take a 20700 make up for the additional weight.

LED + Runtimes + Temps
This light uses a Luminus SST40 N5 LED. No color temperature is given by jetbeam. It’s on the warm side but there is a pretty strong green tint to it. Inside this bothers me outside, especially against grass or trees with leaves it’s less noticeable. Not my favorite tint. From reading about this LED CRI is about 70. It’s not an LED that is in use much.

The beam is pretty smooth after about 10 feet and really throws well for how shallow the reflector is.

UI
The UI of this light could stand a bit of tweaking in my opinion. To turn it on from off you have to press and hold about ½ a second to come on. If you do a quick press from off you get battery check mode. I found myself getting into this alot at first. Once on in normal mode you are presented with memory of where you last were. By default it starts off in Eco = 5 Lumens, then to Low at 50 lumens, mid at 150 Lumens, High at 400 Lumens and Turbo at 950 Lumens. Last mode up in the normal group is a red. I found red to be just the right brightness. Enough so you could see your feet and 1-2 feet in front of you but dark enough to no feel like it was too bright to read a map.

The light does have low voltage indication where it starts blinking the Red LED’s when power drops below 20%. Problem is this is hard to see unless you have something up close.

I would like to see some shortcuts added, double click to turbo and triple click to red. Take red out of thee normal modes and maybe quad click for battery check instead of a fast press.

Battery Compatibility
This light can take 3 different battery types. It comes with a button top Jetbeam branded 2600mah battery. When in use with this cell there is an included small plastic sleeve to keep things from rattling. You can also use 2 CR123A cells which I suspect will rattle a bit due to the smaller diameter. The light can also use an unprotected 20700 battery without the sleeve. THe battery tube itself isn’t in the center. It’s off axis and slightly cam shaped.

Parasitic Drain was measured at 4.0uA.

Runtime on the included 2600mah
I tested runtime with the included JetBeam branded 2600mah battery. Turbo predictably ran for 3 minutes before falling rapidly to about 55% of relative output for a large bulk of the time. For the next 130 minutes it was fairly stable. At the end I saw one more large decline in output to 20% relative output and then the light shut off due to low voltage protection. During the batteries last 20% the red LED’s flashes letting you know the power was low. Total runtime was about 145 minutes on 2600mah.

Runtime on a 20700 battery
Thanks to reddit user /u/mcfarlie6996 for sponsoring a 20700 battery for me. I didn’t have one (Or have any lights that took them) and it was great to test how much more runtime you can get with minimal size and weight differences between an 18650 and 20700. Total runtime with the 2600mah 18650 that was included was 145 minutes, The total runtime on the Panasonic 4000mah battery was a very impressive 260 minutes. Thats 44.2% more run time for only an additional 14 grams in weight. Output curves were pretty similar between the two batteries with the main difference being that 55% relative output was about 220 minutes in length. With a 20700 battery it makes the JetBeam HR30 be the longest duration headlamp I have by a large margin.



Charging
This light uses USB-C for recharging. The port is built into the threads on one of the ends. To get enough clearance you must remove the cap. It would be nice if there were more threads so you could leave the cap attached. A nice heavy duty USB 3 to USB-C cable is included with the headlamp for use when recharging.

The charging status indication isn’t my favorite. First you have a small LED near the USB-C port itself that is always green. This tells you when electricity is flowing but that’s all. During charging the light comes on in Red mode on the main LED’s and for much of the time it’s a slow flashing red mode. When finished the flashing goes solid charging is complete. Having the main red mode LED’s come on is just too much. Not only does this consume a decent amount of power it’s also very bright and annoying. It would prevent you to charge in a bedroom overnight, or in a tent if you were camping. In my opinion it would be better if they put a multi color LED at the port instead of the green and used it to indicate status.

Pro

  • USB-C charging but the charging indication via the main red mode is goofy. * Multi Cell capable including 20700 support!
  • Huge runtime on a 20700 battery, just at 260 minutes.
  • 160 degrees rotation inside the head mount
  • Beautiful machining on the end caps.

Con

  • Charing indication status is too much, just use a multi color LED near the port.
  • For a light of this price range 2600mah battery is low. 3500mah or a 20700 would give the light a good bit more runtime for minimal additional cost and make the runtimes listed on the box accurate.

Summary
It’s nice to see USB-C make its way to flashlights offering onboard charging. It’s the connector of choice for easier to use, higher power capabilities in this application. It’s also nice to see a headlamp add the capability to run a 20700 battery in addition to the 18650’s, and CR123. This is an application where the little bit of extra size doesn’t matter much to me but that additional runtime is valuable. 42% more runtime with a 20700mah battery over the included 18650 for only 14 Grams in additional weight is well worth it in my opinion. The HR30 has engineered this pretty well with the included spacer for 18650’s.

The UI of the HR30 takes some getting used to, with battery check being so easy to activate when you want a continuous mode instead. If you switch between a lot of different lights like I do you will probably activate it accidently. I hope that Jetbeam decides to move the red mode out of the recharging indicator and go with a multi color LED in the port instead. A few UI shortcuts to Red mode, and turbo would really improve the light too.

I would advise JetBeam to hire a native English speaker to proofread their manual and marketing materials. It seems like a basic thing but it would polish their image to be free of grammatical errors and mistakes. In today’s gig economy this is easy and inexpensive to do.

I like the HR30 headlamp and think it’s best in an outdoors setting due to the tint of the UI and the runtime that a 20700 can add. It’s built well with very good machining and a pretty attractive design. In my opinion it’s too big to use as an in pocket EDC but with the clip it could easy attach to a bag or backpack strap to light up whats in front of you.

I will have a link to the Jetbeam website on where you can see more about the light. It’s available at many retailers online too.

EDC Flashlight Reviews Review Reviews

Nitecore EC22 Review (Infinitely variable brightness 0.5 – 1000 Lumens)

The Nitecore EC22 is a single emitter small diameter 18650 light with a rotary switch instead of a more traditional button. This allows Nitecore to make a light that instead of having preset modes make it infinitely variable and ramp via the smooth rotary on the front of the light. Thanks to Nitecorestore.com for sending this to me to take a look at.

Full Image Gallery: https://imgur.com/a/XRkJ8Gg(link is external)
The YouTube Version of this Review

Packaging
The packaging is Nitecore’s standard Black and Yellow retail hanging box, with pictures of the light, and details on the back. Inside the box is a plastic tray with the light itself, holster, lanyard and extra origin. The holster here is a more basic model and it almost looks like it was designed for a shorter light. The EC22 fits but ther just isn’t much room for the velcro to latch. It does have a D ring and velcro belt loop.




Construction
This light is made from nicely milled aluminium and hard anodized black. It’s pretty narrow for an 18650 light. There is some fairly smooth knurling on the tail cap and body tube. The tail cap has a large recessed flat that would have fit a magnet or tail switch if Nitecore chose to do so. However in the EC22 it was just left blank with a large lanyard hold for easy of mounting.


The clip is “Titanium plated stainless steel” I believe this is most likely a TiN based PVD coating used to increase scratch resistance. The clip can attach at the rear of the light for tip down carry or closer to the middle for use on a hat as a headlamp. I wish the retention was a bit tighter out of the box but you can tighten the clip up by bending it if you wish.

Closer to the front there is a 6 sided hex anti roll ring. At the front there is the rotary switch in machined aluminum. It could use a bit more grip in my opinion as it’s a bit stiff. Threads are square cut and nicely greased with an oring on each side of the body tube.


Maybe I am a little OCD but for me on lights with a milled flat on the body tube with writing it should line up with the button. Unfortunately my example of the EC22 suffers a bit in this regard because to have it line up with the button it won’t make contact. It requires just a touch more rotation to make contact and this makes the flats off axis.

Size/Weight/Water Rating
The EC22 is thinnest at 25.5mm and thickest at 26mm. Overall length is 128.7mm. Weight with a Nitecore IMR 3100mah battery is 126.8G. Water rating is IPX8.

Switch and UI
The UI of this light is very simple due to the linear rotary switch near the front. There is a strong detent on the switch and when you turn it on or off it makes a click that you can hear and feel. The rotary switch rotates clockwise, in my right hand this feels pretty natural to use your thumb and push back. Either way it’s a smooth operation but has decent resistance. I do wish it had a bit more aggressive grip on it due to its resistance. It can be turned on with one finger but is easier with two. I don’t see this light coming on accidentally in your pocket or bag. The light starts in the lowest output it can do which is below a lumen and the further you advance the rotary switch the brighter it gets, do the reverse to turn it off. From off to full is 270 degrees of rotation.

There is no extra modes on this light, shortcuts, or memory mode. This makes it really easy to use.

LED + Runtimes + Temps This light uses a Cree XP-L HD V6 LED in cool white. It’s pretty standard cool white, not too cool and not warm. I don’t notice any significant cree rainbow in this emitter. The reflector is smooth and the lens is anti reflective coated. This light will work with button top batteries and flat tops. It’s nice to see Nitecore evolve into using both types on several recent lights.

Beam Shot
The beam does have some artifacts at the 5-6ft range. I think the bezel causes some distortion as well as the LED Die itself as its kind of square distortions. The reflector itself doesn’t get that close to the LED itself which could be part of it. At further distances it’s not as noticeable.

Parasitic Drain I measured at 1.5uA

Runtime
I did my runtime testing with a Nitecore branded IMR 3100mah button top protected battery. As you can see from the graph the light does have active thermal controls. You can see this as the light ramps down from turbo it dips down, cools off and then for a short time increases in brightness before settling in to about 55% of relative output for a solid 80 minutes. The next 25 minutes the light decreases significantly in output smoothly as the battery runs out. Total runtime of usable light with this 3100mah battery is just at 160 lumens which is quite good. Longer runtimes can be expected for lower outputs as well. Heat was not an issue.

Pro

  • Really easy to use interface once you know which direction the rotary switch operates.
  • Large lanyard hole and tail standing design.
  • Can use flat tops and button top batteries.

Con

  • Body tube flats don’t line up with the button on my example.
  • Pocket clip should have better retention and I would prefer deeper carry.

Conclusion
Nitecore isn’t afraid to try new things with their flashlight designs. For me a rotary switch like this is new and I like it. It’s a little stiff but I expect this to loosen up a bit. I really like the infinitely variable light output this has and I think a rotary switch like this is a decent way to do this. It makes its operation very logical. I think if Nitecore wanted to make a “Tactical” model they could add an electronic switch to the tail cap to add some shortcuts but this would complicate the UI. If you have not tried a light with ramping output it’s quickly becoming one of my favorite features when done right. The output beam isn’t as smooth as I would like to see but I don’t think a non flashaholic would notice this. For me it’s not a deal breaker for what is otherwise a nice flashlight. Thanks again to Nitecorestore.com for sending this to me to evaluate.

EDC Flashlight Reviews Review Reviews

FiTorch ER16 Review (1000 Lumens XP-L2, 16340,18350,USB Recharging)

FiTorch is a newer brand to me and this is the first light I have looked at from them. It’s designed for EDC use, has onboard charging via micro USB, magnetic tail cap, and a deep carry pocket clip.Thanks to Banggood for sending this to me to take a look at.

Full Image Gallery https://imgur.com/a/vswz9

YouTube Version of this Review:

Packaging
Packaging is a black orange retail style box complete with a hanger. On the rear you get lots of details such as lumens, runtime, battery, and other ratings. Inside you get the light itself in a plastic try along with the accessories including the deep carry clip, lanyard, branded belt holster, and one oring. The holster is made of black nylon, is branded with a sewn in flag. It’s belt loop is fixed, and it doesn’t have an oring. It’s sides are elastic so it fits the light well. You will need to be careful with button placement so you don’t accidently turn it on.




Construction
This light is made from aluminum that’s hard anodized black. Machine is above average quality and inline with the price of the light. The tail cap has circular groves running around it as knurling with 4 pockets milled in to provide extra grip This light unscrews in the middle which is a little different from many. There isn’t any knurling on the body tube but it has enough cuts to provide grip. Threads were nicely greased and fairly fine. For a light of this size it has quite a few threads.


The front end of the light a hexagonal area milled out that contains the button and USB charging port opposite the button. This are is milled out to act as a heat sync The button itself is flat and metal, it’s a floating style button. I do recommend using lockout with this light if your going to carry it in a front pocket. Around it is a small clear bezel with multicolor LED’s under that acts status indicator for power level and onboard battery charging. Further forward is a smoothly milled area where the emitter and lens are.

The bezel is not removable as a front piece itself, itls a larger component and it’s lightly crenulated. The lens itself is anti reflective coated glass. The reflector smooth and fairly deep, and the emitter is nicely centered.


This light is rated for a 16340 battery but there is quite a bit of extra room in the tube when your using a 16340 so I decided to try a flat top 18350 that I had on hand. I had to add a magnet in the center of my flattop to make the light work again because of the physical reverse polarity protection built in but it will work and there is still a bit of extra space left in the tube. With the 16340 battery installed I didn’t have rattle because of the pretty strong spring in the tail.

The light has a strong magnet that very easily holds the light’s weight on a metal surface both horizontally and vertically. No weak magnets here, it’s the way it should be. It’s strong enough that it holds the battery in place too even though there is a spring in between.

93.3mm in length, 27.7mm at it’s thickest (Button) and 23.7mm at it’s thinnest.
Weight with my KeepPower 16340 is 91.3g
Water Rating is IPX8

For a 16340 EDC light it’s a little bigger than I expected. For a front pocket EDC the more lights I test the more I have determined diameter is one of the most important factors and the ER16’s is just a little bigger then I would like. If you have an Emisar D4, it’s pretty similar to that in diameter and length. Lengthwise the ER16 pretty decent. This being said it carried nicely in a couple pairs of jeans. I really liked the clip on the ER16. It’s sturdy and deep carry to where there is almost none of the light showing above your pocket, exactly like I like.

LED + Runtimes + Temps
The ER16 uses a Cree XP-L2 LED in cool white, defined hot center. Output on turbo is 1000 lumens. Medium is 340 lumens, medium is 100 lumens and low is 3 Lumens. I would like to see high be a bit higher and low be a bit lower under ideal circumstances. The beam has a definite hot spot with a decent amount of spill. The light throws better than I expected too. Easily out too 100 yard which is pretty good for this size of light.

Runtime
For my runtimes I used a Keeppower 800mah 16340 battery and an Aspire 1100mah 18350 for comparison. Turbo lasts for about 5 minutes on the 16340 decreasing as voltage drops. It’s more stable on the 18350. The light does step down as you can see from the graph. It’s making usable light out to about 90 minutes. With a 18350 medium lasts a bit longer but the biggest difference with is how much longer low runs for. It makes usesable light out to about 150 minutes before entering low mode at 3 lumens. If you can use an 18350 instead of a 16340 do it, because there is almost no penalty in doing so.

UI
The UI of this light goes as follows Turbo > High > Mid > Low > Turbo. It’s unfortunate it starts in turbo. I think this limits it’s practical EDC use because many times you don’t want to start off at 1000 lumens. There is memory but it’s pretty short in how long it remembers. You can double click to get to strobe and single click to exit that mode.

Lockout is accomplished when the light is off pressing and holding the switch and the indicator will briefly flash red letting you know its locked. Doing the same thing will unlock it and low mode will come on in the main beam.

Voltage check is well done on this light. From off triple click the button 3 times in a row. First you get green flashes showing the first number of the voltage so 3 would be 3 volts then you get red flashes showing the next digit. So 3 green 1 red would be 3.1V.

Charge Graph
This light has onboard USB charging via a micro USB port on the body. As I mentioned earlier the unfortunate thing is that this microUSB port is buried deep requiring a longer then average cable to recharge. For me this kind of defeats the purpose of MicroUSB recharging if I can’t use a standard cable. The light can charge at 1A but it didn’t hold there for to terribly long only about the first 30 minutes before it started slowing as the battery (800mah Keeppower 16340) reached capacity. Terminating voltage was 4.1V. Total charge time was 1 hour and 9 minutes.

Pro
*Quick charging for a 16340
*Fits 18350’s by surprise, nice for extra capacity
*Sturdy deep carry clip and a strong magnet
*Throws well for an EDC light

Con
*Extra deep micro USB connector means most standard cables won’t work for recharging.
*Wish the UI would start on low instead of Turbo.

Conclusion
The FiTorch ER16 has some pretty stiff competition in this size and use case. For me the ArmyTek Prime C1 probably wins out due to it’s slightly thinner profile and button that is less prone to accidental activation. However the ER16 throws further and has a smoother beam profile over the Prime C1 Pro. My recommendation for FiTorch is that they make the UI start on low, and not recess the microUSB connector quite so far so that you could use a standard cable to charge it. If you don’t mind these things the ER16 is a nice light that charges pretty quick and has a strong magnet. It will work well in an EDC application for you.

You can pickup the ER16 on Banggood if you have any questions please let me know below.

EDC Flashlight Reviews Review Reviews

Thrunite C2 (Battery Charger & Power Bank in one) Review

Have any questions? Leave them in the comments and I will do my best to answer!

Thrunite C2 3400mah on Amazon https://amzn.to/2qkDg0T

Review Reviews

VicTsing Mechanical LED Keyboard (Blue Switches) Review

A backlit mechanical keyboard is one of those things you don’t know you need until you have one and go without it. Today I have a new VicTsing backlit LED keyboard to look at with blue switches. Thanks to them for sending this to me to look at.

In case you don’t know mechanical keyboards have became very popular in the past few years with gamers, coders, and office workers who type a lot. There are a variety of switch types that are described by their color. Cherry was the original company producing these switches but now there are more affordable options on the market that function nearly the same. The keyboard I have been using at home uses a brown switch which is a little quieter but still clicky. This new VicTsing uses a blue style switch which is one of the louder versions with medium force. They are clicky so you might now want to use it near other people but it works great for typing I think or gaming if you are into that. These take about 60 grams of force to activate which for me seems fairly normal. For the money it’s pretty affordable for a mechanical keyboard.

 

The backlighting on this keyboard is the star of the show for a low cost keyboard. It has 9 preconfigured modes to light up certain keys for different styles of games or use. You can also adjust brightness of the lights but the colors are not adjustable. Let’s take a look at all the colors.

 

Build Quality and other Features

This keyboard is made from rigid black plastic hand is held together with screws mostly. For the price this is what I expected and I don’t have any problems with it flexing unnecessarily. The feet to prop the keyboard up are standard height. One thing I think more keyboards should have that this one does is drain holes. It should help drain the liquid if something gets spilled. The keyboard uses a full size USB connector with a pretty long plug on it. This could be an issue on a laptop but it’s not on a desktop. It’s nice there is a key puller included in the box too.

 

Improvements I would like to see

  • Nylon Wrapped cable
  • Windows key on the right hand side of the keyboard.
  • A little better font on the keys.

 

This is a decent cheap mechanical keyboard. This would be great for anyone who is wanting to try out a mechanical keyboard and not wanting to spend over $100 on one. Expect that the keys will be loud, and may annoy others in the room. For gaming this is a good option, with all the different LED patterns. I personally prefer dedicated volume buttons but can manage with the function key ability. Great for a beginner or someone new to mechanical keyboards to try out. 

Interested? Pick it up on Amazon https://amzn.to/2qfYvAP