Review: Xiware L20C

22 posts / 0 new
Last post
ChibiM
ChibiM's picture
Offline
Last seen: 11 hours 54 min ago
Joined: 05/09/2011 - 10:25
Posts: 6134
Location: Holland
Review: Xiware L20C

Xiware L20C

XR-E R2

2x16340 or 1x18650

2.7V-18V?

Electronic switch

High-Low-Strobe-SOS

variable output (ramping)



I had an order that didnt arrive, so I asked for a giftcard, and would give this light a try.
Looking at the pictures, it looked better built than other lights around this price.

So I started my little research.
No reviews came up in English!
But I found a few sellers on Taobao, and they charged about the same as they charge for a Nitecore D11 and Jetbeam BC40.
So that startled my excitement even more.

Then I found the Xiwarelight.com website, which showed some very good looking pics.
It also showed some nice accessories. Way better than the usual stuff.
I also read a few things about the variable output. So now I really wanted to give it a try.

So I ordered it on May 1st.. was packed and sent on May 2nd. Received it this morning, May 12th.

 

My first impressions

When opening the yellow envelope I was a little surprised to find the usual crappy package that many Chinese sellers put their lights in. And not the original Xiware box that was shown on their official website.

But when I took the light out, I was positively surprised....keep reading

Secondly I found that there was no extra O-ring included. (box, pouch and o-ring are mentioned as including accessories on their website...)
But it did include a good looking strap! Much better than I got with other lights around this price.
It also included this mini-brochure.

Appearance

Just looking at this light made me smile. wow, not a bad light at all.
I like the fine knurling. ..OP reflector..Glass lens... Fine machining work...beautiful engraving (better than my Sunwayman m10A)  Bling bling bezel Wink and the clip.
After taking off the tail-cap, I directly noticed the threads were 1 dry as bone.. And 2 gritty. And 3 it had some cosmetic damage,  see pictures below. 
Threads are square though!


The parts

Before I popped in my trustfire flame, I was playing a bit with, and tried to click the switch.. But the switch felt strange.
I havent handled this kind of switch before. So I thought there might be something wrong. Or this is a special "clicky".
The next thing I discovered, is that I couldnt get the switch out of the tailcap.. no matter how much strength I used.. I couldnt get it out..
So Im really curious how this switch looks like on the inside.
Just checking their website it says it has an Electronic Switch... ???

The other thing I noticed, is that the flashlight only consists of 2 parts.
1, the front, including the head, and 2, the tailcap.
I wanted to open it up, to take a look at the pill, but couldnt get it open.
Then decided to try it through the front, as with a usual ultrafire C8.
It has a silvery bezel, and a glass lens. The bad thing is that the bezel has some sharp edges.
Then I came to the reflector. I was expecting it to be made of plastic, but was again surprised to see it was made of aluminum.
The good thing about the reflector is that its not hollow, so the sides are actually touching the body, which is a good thing for heat transfer. The reflector is 25mm deep and 32mm wide.

Near the tail-cap is a little sticker to show how you have to insert the battery.. could be useful!

Behind the reflector I found the pill. It was hold in place by a screwed-in-ring. (just like a usual switch)
After unscrewing this, the whole pill just came right out.

The driver

The front: 16mm star

Working

After turning the light on I wanted to know whats so special about this funny switch.  It still feels a little strange, . Anyway.....

As expected, the output wasnt a Wow factor!!!. But I already guessed that.. with a XR-E led.
4 main modes: *1High, *1Low, Strobe, SOS.
Notice that the usual Low mode, is actually more a Medium.
It takes 2x 16340 or 1x 18650
Both give the same output.
When the light is more than a couple of seconds on, you can just click it, and it turns off. When you click it within 2 seconds, it will change modes.

Variable brightness

When its in 1. High or 2. Low, you can press the switch for 2 seconds, and it will start ramping. Ramping starts from the lowest output upwards.

It takes a few seconds to go from Low to High. And when it comes to High, it blinks.. then if you want to continue, it directly goes back to the lowest low, and then starts again by increasing brightness.

 Memory *1

When you stop the ramping process on the desired output, just de-press the switch, and it will remember this setting as the setting you started first off.
So for example, if you started the Ramping process when you were in the (1.)High setting, the light will remember the output brightness at the point where you stopped the ramping.
if you would turn off the light, and start the 4 modes, the 1st mode will be your memorized brightness.

You can also do this with the 2nd mode.

So you can actually let it start in 1 Very low 2 High 3 Strobe 4 Sos. (3 and 4 are always the same brightness and in the same order...)
Unfortunately I couldnt figure out how to work around the strobe and SOS.. but at least I can set the 2 first modes as desired and this will be kept in memory. (nice feature)

Summary


Pros:

  1. very nice finish
  2. feels good in hand
  3. clip
  4. can tail-stand
  5. variable brightness with memory on first 2 modes
  6. nice hand-strap
  7. not low PWM

Cons:

  1. Led is dated
  2. Not the brightest
  3. dry threads
  4. not including the accessories that were mentioned on the website. eg. 1.holster, 2.box, 3. extra o-ring
  5. Strobe and SOS 

for $21 special at DD, its not bad at all. Usually be sold for more..
(Im not responsible for anything that happens to your order, if you order it through this link.. so order only on own responsibility)

Edited by: sb56637 on 08/26/2014 - 17:20
ChibiM
ChibiM's picture
Offline
Last seen: 11 hours 54 min ago
Joined: 05/09/2011 - 10:25
Posts: 6134
Location: Holland

PWM

I don`t have any equipment to test the frequency,speed or whatever its called, but I do have some comparison shots against a few other flashlights I have to show the PWM (pulse width modulation).
Camera set to a 1/2 second. You can go ahead and count, then multiply by 2, and you have the PWM Wink

My first shot: Left Ultrafire UF-H2b headlamp  Right: Xiware L20C

My second shot: Left ITP A3 Titanium R5 (very high WPM) Right: Xiware L20C

Third shot: Left: Xiware L20C  Right: KD C8 xm-l

Left: Solarforce 0-8-4.2 Low (on low) voltage R5  Right: Xiware L20C (on Low)

Conclusion: higher PWM than the solarforce drop-in, Ultrafire UF-H2b, and KD C8 xml, but not as fast as the ITP A3 (Titanium)

Measurements

I can be very short.. I don`t have any measurements.
Somehow I can only get 1 measurement, and that's 0.6A. But I don`t know what mode that is.
Maybe it has to do with the electronic switch. I can only measure it without the tailcap, straight onto the battery and body. With other lights, I can change modes with quickly taking off the leads and then touching again, but not with this light. It stays in 1 mode.
Maybe someone can help me out how to do this.

scaru
scaru's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: 03/22/2012 - 13:36
Posts: 6946
Location: Virginia

For the measuring amperage you may have to measure that through the tailcap. I have a feeling that the tailcap controls the modes not a separate piece in the head like other lights. 

ChibiM
ChibiM's picture
Offline
Last seen: 11 hours 54 min ago
Joined: 05/09/2011 - 10:25
Posts: 6134
Location: Holland

Yes, can you explain how I can do it with normal leads? Thats all I have!

BetweenRides
BetweenRides's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 3 months ago
Joined: 01/02/2011 - 10:34
Posts: 2960
Location: Chicagoland, USA

Thanks, Chibi. That is an interesting light. So where did you purchase from?

scaru
scaru's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: 03/22/2012 - 13:36
Posts: 6946
Location: Virginia

I'll post up a few pics give me ten minutes or so. Smile

scaru
scaru's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: 03/22/2012 - 13:36
Posts: 6946
Location: Virginia

Do you have a peice of wire of some kind? If not just roll up some tinfoil to use as wire. 

scaru
scaru's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: 03/22/2012 - 13:36
Posts: 6946
Location: Virginia

Ok, beware this is kind of fiddly and it may require 3 hands. Somehow I managed to do it with 1 though. Smile

So what you need to do is hook up the negative wire on your dmm to the screws on the flashlight, the positive wire to the inside of the threads on the tailcap, and a peice of wire or tinfoil etc. to the spring in the center of the tailcap to the battery in your flashlight. 

Here a pic is. Also remember that the switch needs to be on the mode you want to measure. 

ChibiM
ChibiM's picture
Offline
Last seen: 11 hours 54 min ago
Joined: 05/09/2011 - 10:25
Posts: 6134
Location: Holland

BetweenRides wrote:

Thanks, Chibi. That is an interesting light. So where did you purchase from?

From DD

ChibiM
ChibiM's picture
Offline
Last seen: 11 hours 54 min ago
Joined: 05/09/2011 - 10:25
Posts: 6134
Location: Holland

Thanks Scaru.. for the pics..
I will have to make some time to get this all working.. That might take another few days..

At least I know what I have to look for now! thanks

scaru
scaru's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 11 months ago
Joined: 03/22/2012 - 13:36
Posts: 6946
Location: Virginia

Yeah, sadly it isn't that easy to do. Good luck though. Silly

Richie086
Richie086's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 hours 13 min ago
Joined: 01/06/2012 - 08:43
Posts: 1602
Location: Long Island, Nassau, New York

Very nice looking light.  I also love the holster they show for it on the  Xiware website.  I wish I had that holster for some of my lights. Thanks for posting.

Richie

sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 hours 14 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 6533
Location: The Light

Interesting option for a variable brightness light. Thanks for the review! Frontpage'd and Sticky'd.

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

kreisler
kreisler's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 years 10 months ago
Joined: 11/12/2011 - 23:32
Posts: 3992
Location: Deutcheland

am not interested in the light but thanks for the review anyway!!

*FMI* i got 4 i/o sh
JohnnyMac
JohnnyMac's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 11 months ago
Joined: 04/12/2011 - 16:03
Posts: 8864
Location: Eastern PA

Nice little review! Thanks! Smile

Ledsmoke
Ledsmoke's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 months 5 days ago
Joined: 08/08/2011 - 16:05
Posts: 1995
Location: Denmark

Thank you for taking the time to do this review. 

An interesting light indeed. I wonder if you have played enough with it to be able to say if it is a thrower or a flooder. 

I would venture a guess and say thrower from the pictures of the reflector.

~ Ledsmoke ~

Dutch humor:

[quote=djozz]

 I do not think that the BLF-community ben

fishinfool
fishinfool's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 03/09/2010 - 00:30
Posts: 4342
Location: Hilo, Hawaii

Thanks for the review Chibi!  

 

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

ChibiM
ChibiM's picture
Offline
Last seen: 11 hours 54 min ago
Joined: 05/09/2011 - 10:25
Posts: 6134
Location: Holland

Finally bought some cables to hook everything up to my DMM, but again can only measure the highest setting, a meager 0.5A!

When I change modes, and try to connect the test leads, it switches back to High! It won't stay in Low. Don't really understand what I'm doing wrong. But looking closer at the pic of Scaru, I think I'm not seeing what is connected where. I guess I need a better picture to see how I have to connect it all up.

If someone can help me here, thanks in advance

ChibiM
ChibiM's picture
Offline
Last seen: 11 hours 54 min ago
Joined: 05/09/2011 - 10:25
Posts: 6134
Location: Holland

Already figured it out! Should have read your explanation first!

High doesn't come above 0.4-0.5A, and low doesn't even show on my DMM, just 0.00 

Thanks for the help.

And yes, it's more of a thrower.

Boaz
Boaz's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 hours 13 min ago
Joined: 11/07/2010 - 09:31
Posts: 7157
Location: Birthplace of Aviation

Low is about One Lumen

 the ramping and shortcut to low is very nice

it's also nice to be able to select between starts in high or starts in low and the ability to set either of the modes to any output level you want is easy and a pretty good idea . you're right chibi hiding the sos and strobe would have been smarter .

the low is a very good low low of one lumen or whatever floats yer boat ..Pwm is there but not horrible ..i'm very sensitive to bad pwm and this one barely bothers me  square threads ,stainless steel bezel and a clip make it a pretty attractive light at this price .

fit and finish are high , tint is neither good nor bad .pretty average xre tint. the beam is almost perfect .it's a little wider and deeper than a p-60 with an orange peel reflector  so there is a defined hotspot that transitions smoothly across the beam with absolutely no rings .

I'm not sure the numbers it seems to be drawing are an accurate representation of the amount of lumens coming out the front of this light .Eyeballed and ceiling bounce says it's doing what you'd expect a xre emitter to be doing from a name brand light ..neither under driven or overdriven .Chibi says maybe it's a xtar light ..It seems to be of that caliber  sort of a mid-priced light that delivers features and doesn't whollop your wallet .here at half price is your opportunity to own a little better light for not much more money .If bright overdriven xml's are what you're all about ,then I'd look elsewhere .If you are looking for something a little different ,this light delivers .

 

Just as a note :

I bought the a10 3mode AA/14500 as well... and the U.I. on this light make it worth the extra 5$ .It's a much more interesting light.

       καὶ τὸ φῶς ἐν τῇ σκοτίᾳ φαίνει καὶ ἡ σκοτία αὐτὸ οὐ κατέλαβεν

                            

       Dc-fix diffuser film  >…  http://budgetlightforum.com/node/42208

Boaz
Boaz's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 hours 13 min ago
Joined: 11/07/2010 - 09:31
Posts: 7157
Location: Birthplace of Aviation

I have mine set up as 1 lumen low  is the first mode  and second click is high ....

 that way it always starts on low and if i don't want high as my next mode I can just hold the button,,,and the light goes to the lowest setting >which is were I was or close to it..... and then starts to ramp up from there ..When I get to the level i want I just release the tailclicky and it is set .... the next mode is still going to remain on high or where ever you set it .. So you can set the first two modes  to anything you like  and change them in an instant ..very intuitive .I think I like it better than a zebralight U.I...

left on in any mode for more than 4 seconds and the light will turn off instead of change modes

3rd mode strobe ...4th sos

Nice thing is you never have to see strobe or SOS..from low or high you can immediately ramp to whatever ouput you want

       καὶ τὸ φῶς ἐν τῇ σκοτίᾳ φαίνει καὶ ἡ σκοτία αὐτὸ οὐ κατέλαβεν

                            

       Dc-fix diffuser film  >…  http://budgetlightforum.com/node/42208

Extra Bright
Extra Bright's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 years 1 month ago
Joined: 09/15/2012 - 18:01
Posts: 46
Location: Texas
scaru wrote:

Ok, beware this is kind of fiddly and it may require 3 hands. Somehow I managed to do it with 1 though. Smile

So what you need to do is hook up the negative wire on your dmm to the screws on the flashlight, the positive wire to the inside of the threads on the tailcap, and a peice of wire or tinfoil etc. to the spring in the center of the tailcap to the battery in your flashlight. 

Here a pic is. Also remember that the switch needs to be on the mode you want to measure. 

OST

(Old School Tag)

It’s a flashlight…..drawn with a flashlight. Lightpainting 101