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Astrolux Ti3A Review

I am a fan of Titanium and have it all over in my life, from knives, to flashlights and even eyeglasses. Today I am looking at the Astrolux Ti3A, a titanium bodied , small AAA powered, Nichia 219C flashlight. Thanks to Bangood for sending this light out so I could take a closer look, let’s dive in.

Complete Image Gallery: https://imgur.com/a/BpoL7
Video Version of this Review:

Construction
As I mentioned this light is made from Titanium alloy from head to tail. Starting at the back, the tail has a hole for a split ring, or a very thin piece of cord. It also has an area milled for a 1.5 x 6mm piece of tritium which is something you need to purchase separately. The cap itself has some small grip panels added for grip and style. The tail is not magnetic, and the spring inside is a lighter duty spring and is golden in color. ! Threads on the body were normal, not square cut. An oring sits at the bottom to improve water resistance.


The body itself has nicely milled squares in place and it’s fairly polished. The machining here is pretty good. Moving up to the head this is a twisty light, there are small grip panels that help but I could use a bit more grip. The front bezel is nicely machined smooth and is removable. The bezel will unscrew if you wish. The front glass is small and anti reflective coated. Underneath is a reflector with orange peel . More on UI and twist operation in the UI section.

Measurements were 65mm for length, widest diameter 15mm, narrowest diameter 12mm . Weight without battery is only 21 grams. A size comparison with similar lights.

I had an early problem with the first Ti3A I received. The head was glued in place with what I believe was excess threadlocker that was applied during install. On a twisty light it’s a problem if it won’t twist. I really tried to break it loose, even heating up the light and using strap wrenches but I couldn’t get it to budget. Banggod quicly replaced the light as there was a known issue on some of the early batch of lights. My second one is working as designed.

LED
This light uses a Nichia 219C LED, in a neutral white (5000k) tint which I enjoy. The LED in my light wasn’t exactly in the center but it didn’t really create artifacts I found to be undesirable. The orange peel reflector smoothed things out with a slightly hot center. Compared with a BLF 348 the Ti3A has more spill and is slightly cooler in tint. BLF 348 on left, Astrolux Ti3A on right.

The output curve on this light is different from anything else I have seen. On high after a bit of time it increases in brightness before decreasing. I tried this two different times with two different Low Discharge NiMH batteries, a Amazonbasics cell, and a Duracell. Both produced graphs that were similar. My runtimes were a little lower than stated and when the cells are low output really drops and fast. In terms of heat this light gets warm to the touch on high but it’s not uncomfortable. With only 85 lumen output it’s not really a concern. 85 Lumens isnt a lot of light, but since this is designed to be a keychain type light I am not expecting a ton. It’s still lower then many other AAA options on high.

UI
UI on this light is straightforward. It starts with first twist on low of 1 lumen, if you twist it off and on again you get medium for 40 lumens, and if you repeat you get high at 85 lumens. If you repeat once more you get strobe on high. The head has about 1 full rotation of range between on and off. The threads in the head are accessible, and not greased much if any. The result is with titanium you can get it to stick a little if you tighten them down too much in either the on or off position. I wish I could get in there and put some dielectric grease on there to improve this.

Packaging is nearly non existent with this light. It comes with a simple plastic case, and no documentation. An extra set of orings were included as well as a split ring.

Pro’s
* Someone is at Banggood and Astrolux is listening and recognizes a lot of us like Nichia LED’s and Neutral white Tint.
* Nice beam pattern
* I like that it has space for tritium in the tail cap.
* This is an affordable price for a titanium light, and I think it’s an attractive combination.

Con’s
* I wish this had a pocket clip, it would make a pretty nice EDC if it did. It still works at the bottom of my pocket but I am more afraid to lose it.
* Threads that are ungreased in the head get sticky if you tighten them too much. I wish I could get in and put some dielectric grease on them to help this.
* I would like to be able to run this on a 10440 battery, but it’s not rated for that.
* Odd Output curve as the light runs and heats up
* Strobe is in the main mode group.

Conclusion
I like titanium, and usually you pay a larger price for use of that material. Here though the light is about $21 at time of filming and that’s pretty affordable for a neutral white, titanium AAA light. I wish it had a pocket clip option as it would make a nice small EDC option. I see this light being attractive for someone who wants to put it on their keychain and wants something small with standard battery sizes. It would also work as a light to throw in the bottom of your pocket if you were not needing a pocket clip. Check this light out on Banggood.

EDC Flashlight Reviews Review Reviews

Astrolux K1 USB Rechargeable Keychain light

The Astrolux K1 is a new keychain style light with 3 different LED options onboard. https://i.imgur.com/UU4tHfW.jpg You have the main centered Cree XP G3 LED in a cool white, on one side you then have a small 365 nanometer UV LED and on the other side you have a small red LED. This light is actually made by Mateminco as the CSF02 and rebranded for Banggood as the Astrolux K1. As far as I can tell it’s the exact same between the two even down to the box design. Thanks for Banggood for sending this light out for me to take a look at.

Full Image Gallery: https://imgur.com/a/rjMh7
Youtube Review:

Size and Build Quality
Size wise this is nearly identical to the Nitecore TIP I review several months ago. https://i.imgur.com/prTmREi.jpg https://i.imgur.com/RRXqv8S.jpg https://i.imgur.com/mFVO7JM.jpg The only real difference is in the tail is. Construction seems to be on par with the TIP. It has a metalized body, I can’t quite tell if it’s 100% metal or a metalized plastic. The K1 is held together with 8 T5 Torx screws, 4 on each side. https://i.imgur.com/JeoIcge.jpg The buttons require a quite firm press to activate and a longer press as well to come on from off. I have carried this in my pocket for the last 2 weeks and had no issues with it turning on by accident.

I choose the rainbow finish to have something different. https://i.imgur.com/xggkJ3u.jpg It’s a glossy finish that fingerprints very easily which I am ok with. I don’t have it on my keys so I have not had too many scratches. It’s a painted on type finish it seems as it’s not a true chameleon paint. It’s available in other colors, Blue, Black, Silver and Rainbow like I have. It is IP65 moisture and dust rated.

Astrolux Length = 60.75mm | Nitecore Length = 60.96mm
Astrolux Width = 25.38mm | Nitecore Width = 24.38mm
Astrolux Height = 12.93mm | Nitecore Height = 11.85mm
Astrolux Weight = 1.39oz | Nitecore Weight = 0.83oz

LED+ Battery
The version I have uses a Cree XP G3 LED in cool white (6000-7000k) as its main emitter. https://i.imgur.com/UU4tHfW.jpg It’s not the best tint in my opinion and has an undesirable green tint.https://i.imgur.com/S2NaTvU.jpg Granted this isn’t going to be your main light. Output is listed as 250Lm, 210Lm, 150Lm, and 40Lm. This light also uses a small UV LED that is claimed to be 365nm and a Red LED. The UV emitter is pretty weak and seems to work fine with the $20 bills I tried it on in dim conditions. It’s a bit dim for use in a hotel or something like that. The red LED is quite a bit brighter than the UV but no lumen number is given. It has distortion thought in the beam pattern https://i.imgur.com/DDfOEJu.jpg. I do wish the Red LED had 2 output modes.

I see Astrolux and Banggood are making a Nichia version of this light and it’s on preorder. Personally that would be the one I would want. Heat isn’t an issue with this light, it barely gets warm to the touch.

Battery and Runtime
The battery is listed at 500mAh and is rechargeable via a built in micro USB port on the side of the light. There is a pretty nice rubber cover over the port on this that fits flush and stays in place. https://i.imgur.com/6z4IudW.jpg When recharging there is an LED under the buttons that turns red when charging and green when charged. I measured recharging speed at 4.92V at 0.51A.

Here is a runtime graph I made. https://i.imgur.com/yJ6cxWW.png As you can see it doesn’t take very long for the light to decrease output from max down to about 78% of the max light output. This is where the light is the most comfortable to run at long term, averaging about 65 minutes before dropping again to about 5% of the original output until the battery is exhausted.

Table and night shots https://youtu.be/PXP0CgFI_C0?t=5m51s
https://i.imgur.com/S2NaTvU.jpg
https://i.imgur.com/DDfOEJu.jpg

UI
UI on this isn’t my favorite for a few reasons but most of all it always starts on high/turbo with no memory. The square button on this light with the power button doesn’t turn on the main LED like you would think instead it turns on the UV and Red LED. The smaller Triangle button is for the main LED. You can long press on the triangle button to shortcut to turbo then step down each additional press. Single click when off doesn’t turn anything on, you must long press to start it. UV and Red modes also require long presses to turn on or off, short press to switch between modes. You can’t have 2 LED’s on at the same time.

Packaging
Is a simple Red and Yellow retail style box. https://i.imgur.com/gOmuALs.jpg https://i.imgur.com/hsMLgeX.jpg https://i.imgur.com/EGmnW1U.jpgThe light comes packed in a plastic pack. There are no accessories, no charging cable, and no instructions other than what is listed on the box.

Conclusion
This is a direct competitor to the Nitecore TIP but with extra LED’s. I don’t use red or UV often enough in an EDC situation, so I am mainly judging off the main beam and tint and in that arena the Nitecore TIP CRI, that I have wins. However, I like the physical design of the Astrolux K1 a little better especially with a cover for the USB port and how they are doing the key ring loop. The UI on the Astrolux K1 isn’t great in my opinion. For an EDC situation you don’t want all the lumens right away, it would be better to come on in low and let the user decide if they need more light. I don’t like the longer presses needed to do most things on the light. No instructions are in or on the package too. Make sure to get those from the Banggood listing.

My recommendation would be to order the Nichia version of this light if you want all 3 colored LED options in one small keychain style light. That will improve the tint of the main LED. When priced right I think this makes a decent competitor to the Nitecore TIP, hopefully they will revise the firmware so future versions won’t start on high.

Save 20% off the Astrolux K1 during Nov 11-13th using code: 4fdb18 at https://goo.gl/74MCnC

EDC Review Reviews

Astrolux K01 CU – Review (Inexpensive copper option)

The Astrolux K01 CU is an interesting light in the budget space. It’s coated copper makes it look very cool but adds a lot of weight and unecessary length to the light for only running a 14500. That said it’s driver and modes are fantastic and I love it comes in many different tints. Check out my full review for my thoughts.

To purchase this light use the link below.

Astrolux K01 CU – http://bit.ly/2puBRXY
Astrolux A6 Clip – http://bit.ly/2qCmYmA

Other flashlight sales at Banggood http://bit.ly/2oguxtq