Review: DX Powerlight HX-G011 1W 1xAA (DX sku 2089)

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sb56637
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Review: DX Powerlight HX-G011 1W 1xAA (DX sku 2089)

Powerlight HX-G011 (Silver)

Reviewer's Overall Rating: ★☆☆

 

Summary:

Battery: Single AA
Switch: Reverse Clicky
Modes: Single
LED Type: Generic
Lens: Plastic
Tailstands: Maybe
Price payed: $4.28
From: DealExtreme.com

 

Pros:

  • Very long battery life
  • Very affordable
  • Small and visually attractive

Cons:

  • Highly variable build quality
  • Not anodized for hardness

 

Build Quality: ★★☆☆☆

The Powerlight is basically a term for cheap 1xAA LED lights with a clicky switch that look approximately like the light pictured in this review.  They are available in a rainbow of colors from a multitude of suppliers.  I don't think there really is an "original" one, but I bought two units in two different orders from DealExtreme because DX is well known.  The first sample has a black rubber switch that protrudes from the tail by about 1mm.  The switch on the second sample is almost flush with the rim of the tailcap, and it does tailstand, albeit a bit wobbly.  It comes with a nice landyard and a quick disconnect.  The threading on the tailcap of the first sample was quite smooth for the price, but the second sample felt much grittier.  The thread is linear, with no definitive feeling when the last thread is being traversed to seat the tailcap onto the body.  The body doesn't seem to be hardened in any way.  The lens is plastic.  The tailcap has a regular spring inside.  The light feels almost weightless.  It has an O-ring on the cap, so I imagine it will withstand heavy rain or even a brief dunking.  The head does not disassemble.  The first sample I received worked very well during the first week, but then it started to fail to power on.  I think I have isolated the source of the problem to the switch, as it flickers when I nudge the switch with my fingernail.  So in summary, you might get a really nice flashlight for the price, but you could also receive a dud.

 

Battery Life: ★★★☆

Despite being one of the cheapest lights available with a cheap generic LED, it really excels for its battery life.  On a good quality fresh Alkaline AA it will produce usable light for several days.  On an old AA that no longer powers my wireless mouse, it runs for 12 to 24 hours.  If you use it with a very low battery in an emergency situation, make sure not to turn it off, as it will not power up when the battery is very drained, although it will keep running on the same battery.  If you accidentally turn it off, wait a few minutes and will probably fire up again. 

 

 

Light Output: ★★☆☆

The light output won't stun an intruder or blind your dog, but it will light up your path or let you read comfortably at night.  The LED could be Luxeon-type, as I have seen this light advertised as "Luxeon LED" on other sites.  The hue is a tad bluish.  The hotspot has a few little dark spots in it, probably because of manufacturing smut on the LED.  The hotspot smoothly transitions to the aura.  The focus seems normal for a light of this size.

Update: Upon further examination, the beam quality of my second sample is actually excellent.  I would give the light output a full five stars.  The brightness isn't so excepcional, but the light quality is.  There are no spots, no shadows, no noticeable hotspots, just smooth, clean, usable light from the center all the way out to the edge of the aura.  I'm impressed.  My second sample is up there with the best of my flashlights in this criterion.

 

Summary: ★☆☆

The Powerlight HX-G011 is a fine option for a truly bargain conscious buyer.  It is also good for using in dirty or harsh conditions, because if it gets lost or destroyed you can probably afford a new one without shedding many tears.  I like it.  Recommended.  If you own this light please leave your star rating!  Anonymous users can also rate this without registering.  Note that you are not rating this post, but rather the product itself.

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Edited by: sb56637 on 08/26/2014 - 17:06
Don
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DX will sell you switches. If it works fine with the tailcap removed and the negative end of the battery connected to the body with a paperclip you can go:

 

A) the ultra cheap way and throw away the tailcap then get some metal foil. A square slightly larger than the battery tube will do. Wrap that over the end of the light. Stick it down with some duct tape. Press on the middle of the duct tape to make it switch on. Any sticky tape will do - I just like duct tape. Which we call gaffer tape in the UK.

 

or

 

B) Less cheap but still not expensive. Keep the tailcap and do what it takes to dissect it - there may be a screw ring under the plastic cover. If not, go back to A). If there is, unscrew it. Take out the switch assembly - measure it and get a new one of the same size from DX. These ones should be around the right size.

 

or

 

C) Free but fiddly - once you have dissected out the switch take it apart and fiddle with it till it works better. Then reassemble

 

or

 

D) Most expensive way of all - buy a spray can of switch cleaner and spray it into the switch (Preferably after removing any rubber boot) then operate the switch a lot. Shake out the excess then see if it works any better. If not, then go to A.:(( Crying :cry:" />

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

sb56637
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Thanks for the tips!  What do these cheap switches use, a belleville washer?

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Don
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I've not had to gut any. I am about to tear apart a Maglite switch to see what is wrong with it - though those are supposed to be pretty good mechanisms good for 10A.

 

From what you've said, I imagine you don't live in a town so are unlikely to have a Radio Shack or the equivalent nearby. Most such places will have any number of switches for mere pennies. Me - I'd go for the duct tape method.

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

Barrie
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:quest:  would that be black gaffer tape by any chance Don;) Wink :wink:" />

Don
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Obligatory Star Wars tale, "Why is gaffer tape like the Force?"

 

"It has a dark side and a light side

 

and

 

it holds the universe together"

:) Smile :smile:" />:D Big Smile :lol:" />:bigsmile:;) Wink :wink:" />

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

alfreddajero
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Now that was just too funny......i would try to install a smaller tailswitch in there......and where in the hell did the spammers come from.

With Darkness, there will always be Light.

 

 

Don
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Preferably to lengthy terms of imprisonment.

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

alfreddajero
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Yes......that would be nice, or make a member of the site a Moderator to help get rid of the spammers.

With Darkness, there will always be Light.

 

 

sb56637
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Hmmm, this is quite a pain.  The spammers were dumb enough to list their location in the optional profile field.  They put Jamaica and Turkey.

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alfreddajero
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I have not been on a site to date that has been spammer free.....and it will not be the last.

With Darkness, there will always be Light.

 

 

sb56637
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Quote:

Update: Upon further examination, the beam quality of my second sample is actually excellent.  I would give the light output a full five stars.  The brightness isn't so excepcional, but the light quality is.  There are no spots, no shadows, no noticeable hotspots, just smooth, clean, usable light from the center all the way out to the edge of the aura.  I'm impressed.  My second sample is up there with the best of my flashlights in this criterion.

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alfreddajero
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Glad to see that it is in fine working order now.

With Darkness, there will always be Light.

 

 

Don
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First thought. Wow, it's light. Second thought, "It's nearly weightless". Brighter than I expected with a cheap alkaline in it.

 

Doesn't look like the head is removable short of sawing it off. Having had a good look with a 30x magnifier, the head would need a saw to remove it. On both of them the LED is better centred than expected.

 

The squeaking of the threads got to me, but a small drop of thin oil and some graphite (IOW I scribbled on the threads with a pencil) followed by a wipe with a tissue soon sorted that out.

 

I am skeptical of water resistance, the O ring at the tail end doesn't seem to engage with the tailcap. Will test this when I get home.

 

Will do a proper set of tests soon.

 

3 watts - no chance! Not even close.

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

sb56637
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Hey Don, I'm glad you received these.  Not bad for the price wouldn't you say?  I'd be interested to see what you think about the beam quality.  In my opinion, the two samples that I own have the nicest, smoothest looking beam of all my flashlights.  Reasonably bright too, although 3W is obviously a stretch.

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cpf
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CJ 1-Watt Pocket LED Flashlight : $3.99 http://www.goldengadgets.com/cj-1-watt-pocket-led-flashlight.html Rubber 1-Watt Pocket LED Flashlight $2.99 http://www.goldengadgets.com/rubber-1-watt-pocket-led-flashlight.html I wouldn't dare request this at the 'other' site ! Thanks.
alfreddajero
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I have two of the ones in the second link...and for the price the kids love them.  Not as bright as a cree, im suspecting the led used is a Nichia.  The light has good runtime and seems to run fine on 3.2 volt cells.  And just wanted to say Welcome to the site CPF..........

With Darkness, there will always be Light.

 

 

sb56637
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cpf wrote:
CJ 1-Watt Pocket LED Flashlight : $3.99 http://www.goldengadgets.com/cj-1-watt-pocket-led-flashlight.html Rubber 1-Watt Pocket LED Flashlight $2.99 http://www.goldengadgets.com/rubber-1-watt-pocket-led-flashlight.html I wouldn't dare request this at the 'other' site ! Thanks.

Hey there cpf, welcome to the site, enjoy your stay here!

I had two samples of the CJ 1-Watt Pocket LED Flashlight.  They are excellent for the price.  The threads on the tailcap were nice and smooth, the clicky switch worked well, and the runtime was excellent, more than 24 hours on a good alkaline AA.  I carried one with me every day for a year or two, and it finally started to get flickery and I eventually threw it out.  It was a great investment of $5.00.  I wouldn't buy more just because I personally don't like the rubber grip.  But if you like the looks of the CJ-1 you'll probably be very happy with it, and you can't go wrong for the price.

 

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alfreddajero
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And thats the difference between this site and the other......feel free to be part of the group.

With Darkness, there will always be Light.

 

 

Don
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Glad to see you here. I have what I believe to be the same as the second one. It's not what I'd call rubber, it is some sort of hard polymer - as is rubber but not as hard.

 

Mine lives on my work keys. Still has the AAA I got with it and it is still working just fine. I'd not reckon on serious water resistance, the plastic window at the front has got itself pushed in by some of the stuff I routinely carry in my pockets and I've not yet found a non-destructive way to get into the head and glue the lens back in place. Still looking though.

 

Other than that, it is a robust and useful little light that seems to have ample runtime for most purposes. If it stays dark longer than that, then even in winter here, we are in trouble.

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

alfreddajero
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Im surprised because both of mine are AA's.........unless i was sent the wrong one.

With Darkness, there will always be Light.

 

 

Don
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alfreddajero wrote:

Im surprised because both of mine are AA's.........unless i was sent the wrong one.

 

You're right - it does say AA and mine is an AAA - not the same light at all.

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

alfreddajero
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Well i do like the light and for the price it isnt bad at all.....i like the clear one and the wife and i plan on ordering more for my nephews and nieces.

With Darkness, there will always be Light.

 

 

cpf
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<noob alert>

just got "1W LED Flashlight (Black)" from FP which seems to be another Powerlight HX-G011.

( http://www.focalprice.com/LF018B/1W_LED_Flashlight_Black.html )

  • it's black, not grey as shown in the DX pic, better looking in my op.
  • externally, no flaws at all, really good for the price.
  • lens has some small 'lint' on the inside.
  • reflector has a few small 'water spots'.
  • reflector seems to have a small damaged area, pin-head sized,
  • will have to change the O-ring.
  • fully agree with "There are no spots, no shadows, no noticeable hotspots, just smooth, clean, usable light from the center all the way out to the edge of the aura" mentioned in the OP. But mine seems to have a (small) dark half-circle at the edge of the aura,

Quite satisfied taking the price ($3.71) into account, will order a few more to give away. This one is going to be attached to my backpack that I always carry. Using Eneloop. If it has the kind of runtime mentioned in the review, I'll be very happy.

Q1 : can't clean the lens, right ?

Q2 : not worth touching the refector, might peel off, right ?

 

sb56637
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Hey cpf, I'm glad that worked out for you!  So how was your experience with Focalprice.com?  I also ran across this same light, and I was also considering ordering a few of them.  So it sounds like Focalprice.com is legitimate.  If you feel like it, feel free to write a review of your Powerlight, you can find a review template and instructions here.  To answer your questions,

Q1:  In the case of these Powerlights, I can't think of any clever way to get to the lens, because they can't be opened on that end.  They're basically not modifiable.

Q2:  Same goes for the reflector.

If you're going to order more for friends and family, you might try a few of the different options that Focalprice has in the same price range:

http://www.focalprice.com/LF336B/Powerlight_Compact_3W_LED_Flashlight_with_Lanyard_Black.html

http://www.focalprice.com/LF083B/New_1W_Mini_Keychain_Flashlight_Torch_Black.html

http://www.focalprice.com/LF018B/1W_LED_Flashlight_Black.html

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cpf
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Thanks. They look exactly the same, the "Bulb: 1 Watt Luxeon LED.  Bulb life: up to 100,000 hours." desc made me choose the one I did buy.

I discovered FP thru AnandTech forums where some one had posted a Hot Deals link to http://www.focalprice.com/LF367W/Mini_Cow_LED_Keychain_Light_White.html . I got 10 of them for $2, yes $ two.

btw : A year and half ago I did not even know about CREE f-lights. Was at DX, saw the led f-lights there, discovered CPF, got a UF C3 SS single-mode, still amazed ( like most of people who see it ). Very few people are aware of CREE-type f-lights. I'm still learning.

cpf
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This is the budget light forum, right ? You could get the Powerlight ( or any other item ) cheaper at FP by using these coupon codes : 2OFF5 ( $2 off a $5 order ) or 3OFF10 ( $3 off a $10 order ). Eg : you could get two Powerlights for ( 3.71 + 3.71 - 2 ), ie $2.71 each.

See : http://www.retailmenot.com/view/focalprice.com for details.

I'm sure the second one works.

 

Edit : Sorry, what I posted earlier about the coupon codes is wrong. You can use the coupon codes even if your order does not have a single item worth $5 ( or $10 ). Coupon codes cannot be used only for special offers, discounted offers, 99c items.

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I just ordered this light from Ebay: 280442891750

 

I think its the same light as in the original post. 

 

The price $1.48  incl postage. Amazing!!  Laughing   Ordered it yeasterday and I got a mail today stating its shipped. DX could learn something

 

And it got some good comments on CPF and if they are true I might buy 10 more as gifts.

Cheap quality is good - Expensive crap isn´t

fishinfool
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That's a pretty good looking light for $1.48.  Make sure you let us know how it is when you get it.   Smile

Don wrote:

"But as I said long ago, you are more likely to be killed by a dead fish dropped by a seagull in the Sahara Desert than by a lithium ion

sb56637
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Wow, that's a deal.  I just sent them an email to see if they ship to my country.  There are actually imitations of the Powerlight, some of which are flickery, worthless pieces of junk.  But for $1.48 I suppose I might take the risk...  Sealed

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sb56637
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Cool, they do ship to South America.  I ordered three for the grand total of $4.34!!!  If they turn out to be total junk then I will deprive myself of lunch some day and save a lot more than $4.34.  Good grief, these are cheap.  What could you buy for $1.48?

 

 Brownies?  Nope.  $1.51/ea
Tomato soup?  Sorry.  $2.27/ea
12 ounces of rice?  Forget it.  $2.70

 

I could consume any of the above food items in less than 3 minutes.  But somehow they sell a working flashlight made of machined, painted aluminum with intricate threading, a moving switch, rubber switch boot, high-tech LED technology-- and to top it off, they ship it to me from China to South America.  For $1.48.  And it can last a lot longer than 3 minutes.  This is mind boggling.

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