Astrolux FT03 Mini Review (Thrower, 4200 lumens?, USB-C, Aux LED)

Today I have A recent light from Astrolux the FT03 Mini, it’s the smaller version of the FT03 I tested last summer. The Mini has some different LED options, and runs off an 18650 or 18350 battery and has RGB Auxiliary LED’s. Thanks to Banggood for sending this too me to review.


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Pickup the new Astrolux FT03 Mini at Banggood Use code “BGAU1101” to get the light for US $35.99.


Packaging & Accessories

The astrolux packaging is a heavier cardboard box with a line drawing of the light on the front, and a sticker on the side showing the specs you received. Inside you g et the light itself, a 18350 tube, 2 spare orings and a smaller lanyard. You get a manual too that’s fairly long, but the diagram for Andruil is pretty small.


Overall construction of the mini is pretty much identical to the original except scaled down to fit the 18xxx profile batteries instead of the 26650’s. Threads are anodized and ACME cut, the tail still includes stiff heavy duty dual springs. 



The body tube has 4 milled flats instead of 2 but that’s about it. It’s nice they include the 18350 tube here too instead of making it an add on. The button looks and feels the same, and it features the same LED indicators underneath. A slight difference is the charging port cover and how it attaches to the light itself.

To me the diameter of the head looks to be slightly smaller than proportional to the rest of the dimensions, this doesn’t surprise me as it makes the light more carryable. You still have a lightly crenulated bezel, and an anti reflective coated lens with a smooth reflector. 


Size & Weight

Maximum length is 145mm, maximum diameter was 44mm, minimum diameter was 24mm.The weight with a Sony VTC6 is 181.6g, compared to the original with a battery was 397.7g so less than half the weight. The light IPX7 water rated but Astrolux makes sure to note not to submerge it in water. 



Not much to say here on retention, due to the head size it’s not a light i would EDC in a pants pocket but it does work well in a jacket. The light has a lanyard attachment point on the tail cap. No pocket clip is included or designed to fit here.


LED & Beamshots

There are a couple different LED and Tints offered with this light, there is a SST40 option, and Cree XHP 50.2 at 5700k or 6500k, I have the warmer tint XHP 50.2 model here. The driver in use is the Texas Ace Avengers driver, with aux capability, so in practice the light is actually different from the full size FT03. The beam is tight but not like the lights with the flat top LED’s like the Acebeam L17 or Lumintop GT Mini, it’s a more broad beam which I think isn’t bad, I think it’s a more useful beam for most cases.


There are 4 very small RGB LED’s around the main LED inside the light, By default the light comes in Rainbow mode like you see here with low output, I have it in high output here so it shows a bit better. Through the UI you can set it to a constant color, rainbow or volts mode. 



I did my runtime test with a Sony VTC6 battery, and a Vapcell 1100mAh for the 18350 test. I tested directly out of the package without adjusting the thermal configuration since this is a bit of an advanced feature and I don’t think many people will actually do it. That said for best runtime you should.


Runtimes with the 18650 were a bit unstable but pretty repeatable. With both batteries it gets about 3.5 minutes before stepping significantly down to about 5% relative output but then as it cools off output steps up again as you can see from the graph. Most of the output is under 20% though, so on this one only keep it as bright as you need it to maximize runtime and output. The total fon the 18650 was 1:42:30, and the maximum runtime on the 18350 was 0:32:30. Heat wasn’t a major factor with this light while in use with it’s fairly aggressive thermal throttling.



The FT03 Mini features Andruil UI and by default ships in ramping mode which is where I leave it. Stepped mode is available and easy to switch with a trippple press. Double press to go to turbo when on. Andruil is a good UI but complex for a beginner as it has a significant number of modes and options. The manual that’s included does a decent job of explaining things but is very small text. I would encourage you to go take a look at the full Andril diagram and study it if you pick up this light. If you are interested in a more detailed overview of Anduril check out my review on the Lumintop/BLF FW3A. 



The light does have USB-C onboard in the head for recharging. It does require the use of USB-A to C cable for this to work. I did my recharging tests with a Sony VTC6 battery (3000mAh) and saw max charge rate at 1.65A, with overall charging taking 2:02:00 minutes. I ran the same test with a VapCell 1100mAh battery and saw the same charge rate, overall charge time was 0:42:00. I had no issues with using onboard charging for the 18650 batteries but for an 18350 this is faster then I prefer to charge mine so I recommend using an external charger like the VapCell S4 Plus to do this and choosing a slower speed more closely in line with 1C for overall battery life.




  • It’s just fun with the 18350 tube installed, but much less practical in terms of runtime
  • Andruil UI is highly flexible but also not really easy to use.
  • Nice selection of LED, Tints, and Body Colors



  • I think the claims here of 4200 lumens are probably optimistic at least on my copy when I compare it to other lights I have. 
  • Aux here is more of a cool thing rather then super useful as it’s fairly dim. 



I loved the original FT03 and still do think it’s a great value large format thrower. The mini shares a lot of similar features and somewhat similar performance but overall I am just a bit less excited about it. The Aux LED’s here don’t do a ton for me, they are neat but not that practical. For the money if size isn’t a factor I would go with the larger FT03. If you want the smaller size it’s not a bad light if you want aux and onboard charging, if neither of those are important I would check out my review on the Lumintop GT Mini and consider it as well. 

Astrolux FT03 (Best value large thrower of 2019, Coupon Available)

Astrolux has a new lare thrower the FT03. It features a large deep reflector and a SST-40 LED to to give it throw. It’s mated to a 26650 battery tube (but it can accept 21700’s and 18650’s (With an adapter too) and features USB-C fast recharging. Thanks to Banggood for sending this too me. They do have a pretty aggressive coupon available for this if your interested.


Pickup the Astrolux FT03 SST40-W at and use Coupon Code: BGAFT03 to get the light for $29.99 USA ONLY


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The light came in a white sturdy cardboard box with minimal info on the outside. The light was packaged in foam on the inside. The included accessories were minimal, with a lanyard, spare orings, manual, and an adapter to fit 18650 batteries. No charging cable comes with this light.



The light is made from aluminium and has smooth anodizing, in a fairly mat finish. Starting at the tail cap the light does tail stand very well, thanks to the notch cut in it’s side to allow the lanyard to go through. It has an octadecagon milled in for grip. On the inside it has dual springs inside the simple tail PCB.

The body tube is directional (Threads and anodizing are different on each) with 12 panels of knurling. It has to flats milled on each side and a grid pattern milled in too. It’s a nice feel in the hand without tearing up your skin or clothing.

Moving up to the head section we have the e-switch with LED’s under that act as a way to find the light in the dark and as a charge status indicator when charging. It has minimal heat syncing milled in to the sides. Opposite the button is the USB-C charging port with a silicone cover that fits well and flush. It doesn’t get in my way. The bell of the light is smooth as is the top part of the head. The deep bezel piece has large shallow crenelations on it that allows a bit of light to spread when face down.


Size & Weight

I measured the length at 170mm, Maximum diameter in the head at 70mm, minimum diameter in the body at 32mm on the flats. Weight with a 26650 battery was 396.7g.

The FT03 fit’s pretty well in my hand. To me the 26650 tubes feel pretty natural and I like the length and where my fingers and thumb fit. Ergonomics are good.

A bit of comparisons with the Thrunite Catapult V6

LED/Runtime/Beam Profile

The FT03 comes with a clear domed SST-40 LED in Cool or Neutral white. Mine is a NW example. It’s surrounded by a fairly smooth reflector that is deep and helps this light throw. The reflector leaves a decent amount of space around the LED, about ¼”. The lens is glass and double anti reflective coated. It’s using the Texas Star FET driver.

The beam profile is that of a pretty typical thrower. Small hot center where 90+% of the light is focused and then a spill. I don’t see any real undesirable traits. You do notice if there is anything on the lens that’s dirty or causes distortion.


Since this is a FET driven light, a high drain cell is recommended for most performance. That means a high drain 18650 like a Sony VTC6 or Samsung 30Q would be good choices, or for a little more runtime a 21700 sized cell. I ended up going with a Sony VTC6 (3000mAh) for my runtime tests. Turbo steps starts stepping down after about a minute, until the 5 minute mark where you see the aggressive output step down to about 30% relative output. It held this for about 140 minutes. At this point it did more pronounced steps down to almost nothing at the 175 min mark. The light at this point is still on but only in moonlight mode, I left it for another 100 minutes and stopped the test, since it was clearly in need of a recharge. With larger capacity cells I would expect the time after the initial step down to be longer.

I didn’t do a lot of formal heat testing with this light but I can tell you that even with the fairly aggressive turbo stepdowns the head section of the light gets warm to touch as does the body. Nothing dangerous but it’s definitely normal.



The Astrolux FT03 is using the enthusiast developed NarsilM Firmware V1.3 along with an e-switch which is great. By default it ships in the ramping mode which is what I like, it also has a stepped mode you can switch it in to if you want. It’s highly configurable and can be a little complicated depending on what you wish to do. The good news is there are lots of guides on Youtube and various cheat sheets on BLF forums that I will try to link to as well. A couple shortcuts I find myself using is double clicking to strobe.

NarsilM 1.3 Firmware Guide



This light does have USB-C for recharging, but it won’t charge batteries that are at 4v or above which is a little strange. So if you need to top up a cell after a brief use you would need to take it out and use a charger. Frustratingly the light also won’t charge from a USB-C to C cable, it requires a USB-A to USB-C cable or a microUSB to USB-C adapter. When recharging the LED’s under the E switch turn red, and then go green when charged. Maximum charge rate I saw was 1.9A so pretty close to the 2A that’s advertised. This means charging speed is pretty quick even on larger 26650 and 21700 batteries. Terminal voltage was 4.149v.


  • Fantastic value thrower especially with USB-C recharging
  • Fit’s a wide variety of Batteries, 26650, 21700, 18650 (With included adapter).
  • Good LED and I appreciate the tint choices at this price range
  • NarsilM Firmware



  • Only will charge via USB-A to USB-C cables, no C-C cables allow for charging.
  • Won’t recharge cells if they are above 4.0V
  • Not a small light, but that’s to be expected with most throwers
  • Aggressive turbo step downs but this can be modified with the firmware.



At this price point, especially with the coupon I have here, the Astrolux FT03 is the best value thrower of 2019 that I have tested thus far. It’s using the great NarsilM firmware that’s highly user configurable, it has onboard recharging via USB-C (Even though it’s not capable of C-C charging), and is available in Neutral White or Cool white for whichever you prefer. The short of it I recommend this one if your looking for a larger thrower light. Don’t forget to click that link in the description and check it out over on Banggod.


Pickup the Astrolux FT03 SST40-W at and use Coupon Code: BGAFT03 to get the light for $29.99 USA ONLY


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