$12 eBay 'C8' variant XM-L mini-review/impressions

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keltex78
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$12 eBay 'C8' variant XM-L mini-review/impressions

A couple of weeks ago, I won a late-night auction on eBay for a C8 XM-L flashlight for $12.71. The light arrived yesterday, 11 days later, and I'm very happy with what I received!

The light is not quite the same as any of the other C8 lights I've sold/gifted to others. It has the same style as the normal C8s, but there are a couple of differences. My light is a bit longer than the standard C8, and instead of three ribs around the neck, mine has four. The biggest difference is the reflector. Per Manafont's C8 reflector listing, a standard C8 reflector is ~32mm deep. The reflector is my light is ~41mm deep! The light has a standard-appearing body with UltraFire branding, and is printed with "Cree XM-L T6" on the opposite side. What flashlight did I actually get??? Manafont has a deep reflector flashlight that is the same length as mine with some cosmetic differences...

This light does have an aluminum reflector and a glass lens. There is a scratch on one edge of the emitter dome that affects beamshots against a wall, but outside in normal use, it isn't noticeable.

I checked the tailcap current and found that it is mildly driven at ~2.2A at high. Medium and Low draw is ~1A and ~.2A respectively. I'm waiting on an order from Hank for an AR lens, GITD O-Ring, and Nanjg 105C driver that was ordered for this light. I think this light will be a good candidate for the driver swap...

Overall, I'm quite satisfied with this $12 light... Money MouthCool


Keepin’ the “B” in BLF

Don wrote:
It sounds like the XM LEDs won’t really be suitable for flashlight use. Pity…

Edited by: keltex78 on 03/21/2012 - 10:37
garrybunk
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Hmm, sounds nice for +/-$12!  About that deeper reflector, I'm wondering if that is a "C10".  Isn't a C10 like a C8, but with a deeper reflector?  Did a quick search on C10's, but nothing exactly like yours that I found. 

Can you compare beams with a C8?  Smaller hotspot?  More throw? 

-Garry

My Bike Lights Thread, Optics (TIR) Comparison Beamshots, Diffusion Techniques


NOTE: Moving my photos from PhotoBucket to Flickr. PM me or post in the thread if you can’t see my images and need me to fix or send a gallery link. PhotoBucket images should remain visible until November 2018.
keltex78
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I don't have a C8 on hand right now to compare, but my light appears to have a tighter/more defined hotspot. The hotspot on this light appears to be ~ 8-9" at ~10'.  It doesn't seem to throw quite as well as a C8 on DD high, but I would imagine that's due to the 2.2A high versus the 3+A DD current.


Keepin’ the “B” in BLF

Don wrote:
It sounds like the XM LEDs won’t really be suitable for flashlight use. Pity…

garrybunk
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keltex78 wrote:

It doesn't seem to throw quite as well as a C8 on DD high, but I would imagine that's due to the 2.2A high versus the 3+A DD current.

Yeah that's true, forgot about it being driven so mildly.  Guess we'll have to wait until after your mod for a full comparison.  Might give you another excuse to buy a C8 so you have one available  to compare too!

Oh, link to the Ebay seller you bought this from?  Edit:, saw in the "What you got today" thread that it was Ebay seller "1buycart", however an advanced search on Ebay tells me that seller ID doesn't exist. 

-Garry

My Bike Lights Thread, Optics (TIR) Comparison Beamshots, Diffusion Techniques


NOTE: Moving my photos from PhotoBucket to Flickr. PM me or post in the thread if you can’t see my images and need me to fix or send a gallery link. PhotoBucket images should remain visible until November 2018.
keltex78
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The sellerID is xustore0598. Here's a link to the listing I won...

http://www.ebay.com/itm/160751765908


Keepin’ the “B” in BLF

Don wrote:
It sounds like the XM LEDs won’t really be suitable for flashlight use. Pity…

keltex78
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I guess nobody knows what light this actually is. Frown

I didn't feel like waiting for the nanjg driver I have on order, so I installed my spare XM-L driver I had stashed in my kit. It's this driver from DX: http://www.dealextreme.com/p/5-mode-led-driver-circuit-board-for-flashlight-dc-2-8-4-2v-106796

I actually like this driver; I thought the no-memory/odd mode arrangement would be weird, but it works out really well. It always comes on in Medium which is still quite bright, second click goes to Low, while a third takes you to High. High is a DD-high too, so this can provide 3+A from decent cells.

This light is obviously much brighter now than with the original 2.2A driver. I would compare it to a combination of the flood from my P60 XM-L with throw roughly comparable to my TR-1200 but in a much smaller package. I have not yet checked output with my light meter to compare, but hope to do so soon. I have a C8 on order from MF for someone else and will do a side-by-side comparison once it has arrived to determine what difference the deeper reflector makes on the beam. Beamshots may be coming soon...Cool

I really do like this light; it's more substantial than a P60, but still small enough to be conveniently portable. If I only knew what light I have! Undecided


Keepin’ the “B” in BLF

Don wrote:
It sounds like the XM LEDs won’t really be suitable for flashlight use. Pity…

garrybunk
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Doesn't sound bad for $12!  So the "no memory" on that driver means it always starts back at Medium.  Interesting and I think I like the sound of it as well.  The one or two "no memory" lights I have always starts in the next mode (rather annoying). Thanks for sharing the info on the light and driver.  Will be interested in hearing the comparison to a C8.

-Garry

My Bike Lights Thread, Optics (TIR) Comparison Beamshots, Diffusion Techniques


NOTE: Moving my photos from PhotoBucket to Flickr. PM me or post in the thread if you can’t see my images and need me to fix or send a gallery link. PhotoBucket images should remain visible until November 2018.
dthrckt
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sounds like a great budget light, for my purposes - ie size, better heatsinking than p60, price, and I pretty much count on doing a driver swap anyway...

thanks for posting

edit: thanks for the driver info, too, forwarding to ian

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keltex78
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garrybunk wrote:
So the "no memory" on that driver means it always starts back at Medium.  Interesting and I think I like the sound of it as well.

The nice thing about this configuration is that you don't have to cycle through the annoying Strobe/SOS modes. I'll try to do some measurements tonight and find out what the current draw is on the Medium/Low modes.


Keepin’ the “B” in BLF

Don wrote:
It sounds like the XM LEDs won’t really be suitable for flashlight use. Pity…