GearBest's Entry into Flashlights, the zanflare f1! First Light from this manufacturer!

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DB Custom
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And the $90 Nitecore P12GT?

There are a lot of lights that use a tail switch as well as a side switch. Some people like the ability to signal with the tail switch, or simply lock out the electronic switch to make it safe for pocket or backpack carry. “Forced” is pretty strong accusation, just because they didn’t choose to build it Your way.

I don’t care for e-switch lights without a tail switch cut-off. They have constant cell drain and are too easily accidentally activated.

Dale

dazed1
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Firstly congrats to Gearbest for the first inhouse flashlight Thumbs Up

Also thanks to DB Customs, for his awesome review of this light.

From my personal experience with this light, i can say few things.

First the pros.
___________________________________________________________________________________________

1. I will be a bit shallow here, but what firstly surprised me, was the quality of the packing – the box prints/material/presentation where awesome. It screamed quality to me. I know its not such an important thing, but it was really a nice change from the other lights i have seen so far.

2. The build quality of the light, no lose feel, clicking things, or anything. starting from the matching, anodizing and the buttons-feedback, are all near perfect imho, when you hold the light, you got such a nice feel and it feels like the light is in the 100$ + category, not budget light (price-wise), the buttons are very clicky and are build from sturdy materials, the back button is very strong and the feedback is really awesome, something that often is totally off on the lights in this price range – the material used from the buttons are also very good. Compared to my Jaxman E2 for example this light destroys it in terms of build quality, anodizing, buttons feedback, machining, and most importantly hotspot artifacts/rings, its much better.

3. The led tint is very nice,no greenish or bluish, or yellowish tints, pure neutral white (at least from my sample) there are no dark wholes in the hotspot as well, which is another thing i often see with the lights from this price range.

4. I also like the modes, they are decently spaced and i especially like the flare mode, which is even connected to the brand-name, which is a great idea- attention to detail imho again. Having the ability to boost to around 1250 lumens from light of this size is not very common.

5. The driver is also quite decent, and decently build i really like it.

6. The light is able to tailstand which is important to me.

7. The light comes with charging port, which is huge bonus for first time users, since they cant be bothered with chargers or spend additional funds on them, its alot more convenient this way. Its big bonus for flashlight enthusiast as well, since one more less thing to think of .

The cons,

The only “con” i can think of its my OCD, much more then a con, namely the ring which cover the charging port, is not 100% in angle with the light tube – this is total nitpick, much more then a real or ANY problem. For now, i don’t see anything other as a negative thing.

Overall im impressed for a first try, this is a very good showing! grats one more time Gearbest! Beer

Fenix TK61 MOD> resistor, transistors, copper heatsink, Artic Cooling MX4, dedome, 3A > 5.7A ~ 1700 lumens > (600.000cd)

Xoden
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DB Custom wrote:
And the $90 Nitecore P12GT?

There are a lot of lights that use a tail switch as well as a side switch. Some people like the ability to signal with the tail switch, or simply lock out the electronic switch to make it safe for pocket or backpack carry. “Forced” is pretty strong accusation, just because they didn’t choose to build it Your way.

I don’t care for e-switch lights without a tail switch cut-off. They have constant cell drain and are too easily accidentally activated.


1.I definitely don’t consider Nitecore to be some kind of ultimate authority in flashlight design. And they do have pure e-switch designs, like HC30 (the one Nitecore I actually handled, the body is excellent, the light itself is poor due to cold white LED and bright hotspot, and definitely doesn’t worth its list price of $50).
2.I doubt that any significant number of flashlight users know and use Morse and besides this almost every flashlight designer thinks that at least two blinky modes are necessary and includes them in the driver. Also nothing prevents you from using a e-switch to turn the flashlight on and off to perform whatever signal you wish.
3.If the tail switch just turns your flashlight on, than how can it prevent an accidental activation? If it gets accidentally pressed – it activates the flashlight.
Just unscrew the flashlight a bit to make it 100%-activation-proof.
4. Constant cell drain happens when you can’t design a driver properly. And a second switch doesn’t provide significatly against accidental activation. Just unscrewing the head/tail for a quarter turn is far more accident-proof way.
Though in the small EDC light like this one or the aforementioned Nitecore it impacts usability less than in large light like Convoy L6 (but for this price I’m willing to tolerate this drawback in Convoy) since you don’t have to re-grip flashlight to go from turning off to selecting appropriate mode.
I see that in the end we just have to agree to disagree.
The Miller
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Dale, sorry if I missed it but how good does it actually charge? (Cut of voltage for example)

Serp
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What is the point to buy it?
This is not small. The design is not brilliant. Built-in charging … Who needs it?
There are brands for the same money or even less.
zanflare F1 $39.99
Eagle Eye X2R $14.5
Convoy BD06 $25
Skilhunt DS20 $35
Sunwayman P25C $44

DB Custom
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Haven’t gotten there yet Miller, will try to run a charge cycle today and let you know. So far I’m seeing that it’s not picking up an only slightly discharged cell for recharging, trying to figure out at what point it kicks in…(been testing bigger things, lot of set-up in getting beamshots on a mile thrower.)

Xoden, I very seldom agree to disagree with theories that are wrong. A copper light? A stainless steel light? Titanium? Bare aluminum? Can’t simply loosen threads for cut-off. Even an anodized aluminum light doesn’t necessarily have anodized threads, and if it does the anodization won’t necessarily hold up through many cell changes. If you are able to make such statements that someone “can’t design a driver” you need to supply the driver you say is right. I’ve yet to see an e-switch design that does not have parasitic drain. Nor have I yet to see, with my experience in hundreds of flashlights, a tail switch with reverse clicky get accidentally activated when properly inset/recessed. The only light I have ever seen accidentally activated through a tail switch was a protruding forward clicky Solarforce, one time and one time only. (this in my inexperienced-with-flashlights-wife’s hands, actually not in her hands but when she crammed her bag into a very small locker at work.) If 100% reliability is required to prevent accidental activation in ANY light, remove the cell.

“Nothing prevents an e-switch from turning a light on/off…” ? Nothing but the UI that is.

So it’s obvious that some people have perverse personal opinions on what makes for a perfect light… perfect for them. But this is seldom going to hold true across the board for a wide variety of users. This out-of-the-box way of thinking, your preference, is why we modify lights to our liking. You are always free to build the perfect driver and incorporate it into your lights to have your light work just as you like it. You are also free to knock the designs of others, whether they are successful or not, but it is of course considered to be poor form to do so. Especially when you haven’t even seen the light in question.

Making notes on what may or may not be improvements is of course a good way to help a new designer find their way to the ideal light. GearBest has entered the manufacturing circle with this 1st entry, as a 1st entry production flashlight there are a lot of things done right on this light. Someone cares enough to try, and try pretty hard, so it’s definitely a step in the right direction. Perhaps more gentle persuasion would be most effective in this kind of situation. Wink

Dale

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Thank you Serp, for your wonderful inclusion of negativity to a babies first steps.

Not.

Dale

Serp
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Welcome to the real world. We are waiting for a sale at $14.99 Thumbs Up

DB Custom
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That’s not the real world. The real world supports a business so it will thrive and continue to offer goods to it’s people. Otherwise, there would no deals at all with small businesses shut down and the monopoly businesses charging exorbitant prices. Get a $14.99 Surefire and let us know the link… Wink

Dale

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Surefire is an expensive brand. I do not think that such a discount is possible Big Smile

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I really like that we have a new player in the game, with already pretty decent product.
As it’s the first light that they produced – of course there are some mistakes, and it should be forgiven.

However they also should receive constructive criticism, to make even better product.
That’s why I agree with Serp that it’s not competing with price. It’s also not ‘sexy’ light for me…hope they will fix both things in future to make even more competing flashlight, that all of us will buy.

PS. I think that built-in charging is very nice thing! Can be given to a muggle, or just taken without any charger to a trip.

Serp
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I think that the PCB is too complicated. T-boards often fail (skilhunt, olight). And here we have three PCB boards. Which increases the length and prevent reliability IMHO

DB Custom
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I hear ya Serp. I too feel like Tires are responsible for car wrecks and should be done away with. Silly

Dale

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Serp wrote:
Surefire is an expensive brand. I do not think that such a discount is possible Big Smile

Oh! The Irony! Shocked

Surefire has been around for years. Certainly they have all the opportunity in the world to make a $15 flashlight with all the bells and whistles. They’ve made plenty on their overpriced “brand” over the years. They could afford to offer a steep discount. And they should have reached economies of scale a very long time ago! Their lights should cost them less to make than what it cost Gearbest to make this one! If they can’t do a $15 flashlight, what kinda lunacy makes you think that a new, upstart brand can pull it off? This flashlight was made with such high quality, and plenty of premium features. Surefire should be ashamed to be in the same room with them! Yet, you want to trash talk Gearbest for pulling off such a well-made flashlight brand and not offering it for pennies on the dollar? Facepalm

Reason is not automatic. Those who deny it cannot be conquered by it. Do not count on them. Leave them alone.
-Ayn Rand

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DB Custom wrote:
I hear ya Serp. I too feel like Tires are responsible for car wrecks and should be done away with. Silly

Dale, your illustration hits the nail on the head. Serp left reality long ago. I’m trying hard to not use the “T” word.

Reason is not automatic. Those who deny it cannot be conquered by it. Do not count on them. Leave them alone.
-Ayn Rand

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Serp wrote:
What is the point to buy it? This is not small. The design is not brilliant. Built-in charging … Who needs it? There are brands for the same money or even less. zanflare F1 $39.99 Eagle Eye X2R $14.5 Convoy BD06 $25 Skilhunt DS20 $35 Sunwayman P25C $44

This just in ………….Rolex makes watches that are fairly accurate and sell at $5000, Timex makes watches that are very accurate at $19.99.
So why doesn’t Rolex go out of business you say?
After all, as you say “There are brands for the same money or even less.”

Different strokes for different folks or to put it another way, An Azz for every Seat and a Seat for every Azz

All men are equal when their memory fades

The Miller
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Maybe it is the word “entry” in the title…
Entry sounds for me as entry level, the item in a line up that requires least payment to obtain.
This is a introduction light for Gearbest, this lacks the implication of not being expensive.
I was surprised by the actual price. Would the title have read “high quality introduction light by Gearbest” I would not have expected a price of around $20 as I did now.

Come on be friendly to eachother.
yes it is a nice light with innovative features
yes it has some things that revolve around personal taste
and yes it is not cheap at all
however a good EDC that lasts a long time and looks special is worth something and whoever thinks this feature set and design is worth it will buy it Wink
BUT we need to know how the charging works, remember that Nitenumen overcharging in a lot of lights, that would be a big no no here.

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People get too carried away here. Flashlights are made to sell in the marketplace which isn’t BLF. And if companies can’t charge enough to make a profit then they can’t stay in business.

I’d like to be able to buy a SIG P210 for $100 but that’s not going to happen. I’m even willing to go up to $500 Smile

DB Custom
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Rolex uses Gold, high end components inside. Timex uses plastic, cheap quartz crystal. And of course, the target audience is widely divergent.

I was asked what I thought this light should sell for. I gave my honest opinion. In the management positions I’ve held before, as well as the business I run now, a 30% target mark-up over cost is a good base to determine final selling price. Largely determined by other factors such as the target audience and what the market will allow. I put no numbers on it, not having a clue what it actually cost to produce. In all honesty, I expected the price to be higher.

Dale

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Title adjusted to reflect reality. Wink

Dale

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There you go Big Smile
Now I expect something really good and expensive, say what, only $35? NICE!
Smile

DB Custom
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I just figured out the charging system. Weird.

I’ve got the cell down to 4.0V, couldn’t get the charger to work, green light only. Then I turned it on at the tail cap, bingo! Red light, charging. I guess with the tail switch turned off there’s not a complete circuit through the cell for the charger to function. Seems counter-intuitive.

Dale

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Thanks for the review. It looks like Gearbest have put a lot of effort into the design and build, and pleasing to see that it doesn’t seem to be a clone of an existing light. Instructions are a big bonus! Would be interested to see some more beam shots.

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DB Custom wrote:
I just figured out the charging system. Weird.

I’ve got the cell down to 4.0V, couldn’t get the charger to work, green light only. Then I turned it on at the tail cap, bingo! Red light, charging. I guess with the tail switch turned off there’s not a complete circuit through the cell for the charger to function. Seems counter-intuitive.

This is also the way they Eagle Eye X6R works! And going by the early adopters, it can stand up to a lot of abuse. I just got one last week and cannot praise it enough. Which is another reason why I thought this Flare is expensive. I was simply comparing it with what’s already in the market.

Slow is smooth; smooth is fast.

DB Custom
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But of course, and it’s only natural to make those comparisons I guess.

Realistic? Probably not.

Get me to build you a complete new flashlight from scratch, for example, and the hours alone would make the price far outside of budget realms. It’d be one of a kind, to be sure, but then that’s not in the same camp as budget. For a company to develop a light, have it made, test it, produce it, sell it… I would imagine the start-up costs are immense. Only stands to reason that an established company with everything sorted out would be able to offer a lower priced item.

Dale

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Absolutely, Dale, no arguments on that but ultimately the goal is to sell flashlights in a competitive market, as far as gearbest is concerned, in high volumes (which isn’t the case for custom and boutique makers). The general public (customers) don’t share our appreciation of what goes into making and selling one, and would be unlikely to consider these things as criteria in choosing one light over another. So, in a scenario where the market is always right, I wouldn’t be very optimistic with sales if priced as is currently. I would even go so far as to take a small loss on my first product so as to get the numbers in and for them to discover what a great product I’m making/selling. Again, all this is from the perspective of a large scale manufacturer/vendor.

Slow is smooth; smooth is fast.

DB Custom
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Sure sure, that of course makes sense. But if you spent so much making your very first model, say it cost a real world $130 per unit to get it done initially, are you gonna sell it for $19.95 just because the demographics say it will sell at that point?

I have no way to know what it cost them of course. I’m just a guy that got an email and took pictures of their first light. Steve

Dale

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LOL, I believe I said “small loss.” Wink

Slow is smooth; smooth is fast.

DB Custom
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Sorry. My wife is very extreme, must have had a bit rub off on me…

Dale

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LOL

Slow is smooth; smooth is fast.

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