Review: Four-way Convoy S2/S3 mini-review

114 posts / 0 new
Last post

Pages

rivet62
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: 01/22/2013 - 11:59
Posts: 79
Review: Four-way Convoy S2/S3 mini-review

Convoy S2/S3 mini-review

I’ve been thinking about upgrading my EDC, an Eagletac D25C2 mini. It is a 2xCR123 XPG light with an advertised 343 lumens. Although it suits my needs well, I’m moving toward 18650 LiIon cells for my using lights, and perhaps it is time for an upgrade.

I saw the EDC 18650 at intl-outdoor, and being unable to decide between the new XP-G2 and XM-L emitters, I bought both. Then, fasttech added the same lights to their web page. I went a little nuts and bought a Convoy S3 and a Convoy S3 from fasttech, too.

Initial impressions

The three Convoy S3 hosts are identical, as you would expect. The fit and finish is excellent with no significant flaws that I can see. The knurling is on the smooth side, so it certainly won’t wear out your pants. The overall aesthetic is plain, which suits me just fine. The only concessions to ornament are the glow-in-the-dark switch button and lens o-ring, and the stainless bezel ring.

Here is a surprise. Notice in the title picture, the S2 is a bit longer than the S3s? The S2 has a deeper reflector than the S3. It’s hard to judge how much deeper it is, but I’d guess around 8-9mm.


This is the white-wall beamshot setup. The lights are turned on to their highest mode, set 50cm from the wall. From left to right, they are the Intl-outdoor S3 with XP-G2, the Intl-Outdoor S3 with XM-L, the Fasttech S3 with XM-L, and the Fasttech S2 with XM-L. The last light, on the far right, is an Eagletac P20C2. I used it for comparison because it is also an XM-L with a similar sized reflector.


This is the same scene shot in full manual mode, 1/125 at F6.3, ISO 100.


This is 1/80 at F4 ISO 100, intentionally over-exposed a couple of stops to better show the spill beams. I had the white balance set to daylight, thus the orange tint.

You’ll notice that the S3 beams are floody. I don’t think the above pictures do justice to the reality. I would say that the S3 lights are extremely floody, more so than any other XM-L light I own. Even the 2.8A Intl-outdoor version lacks the “wow” factor usually associated with heavily-driven XM-L lights. It constantly makes me want to turn it to a higher mode, even when it is already on high.

The XP-G2 is a little better, but not much. The Fasttech S2, with its deeper reflector, has a beam more like what I was looking for. Unfortunately, it only has a 3*AMC7135 driver, so it isn’t as bright as the more heavily driven lights.

Conclusion

The S3 has the makings of a good light, but it suffers from a fatal flaw. The reflector needs to be optimized for the XM-L emitter, to allow a more balanced beam profile. The S2 seems to have potential, but I’d really need to see one with a driver pushing more current to the LED. An XP-G2 combined with the deeper S2 reflector would have promise.

So, is it time to retire my trusty D25C2? Nope, it remains safe for now. The beam pattern is only half the reason, take a look:

Obviously, an 18650 light is going to be a little bigger than a 2xCR123 light. The Convoy, though crosses an invisible line. The D25C2 clips unobtrusively iinside my front pants pocket. Pocket carry of the S3 is going to generate “are you happy to see me?” comments. Sure, I could carry it in a jacket pocket, but if I’m going to do that, why not carry a P60 class light, or even a C8?

Verdict: 3/5

Objective measurements

Here is the methodology for the following measurements. The tailcap current test was done with a inexpensive Radio Shack DMM in the normal manner. I was using the 20A scale, so the lower readings may have some measurement error. For the temperature test, each light was turned on its highest level, and the temperature was measured with an infrared temp gun once per minute for ten minutes of continuous operation. Finally, a lightmeter was used to measure the brightest part of the beam for each light’s highest mode.

intl-outdoor Convoy S3 XP-G2 R5 2B 3 mode

tailcap current measurement:
L 0.08 A
M 0.43 A
H 1.38 A

temperature measurement:
0:00 25 C
0:01 29 C
0:02 31 C
0:03 34 C
0:04 35 C
0:05 35 C
0:06 36 C
0:07 37 C
0:08 36 C
0:09 40 C
0:10 38 C

lightmeter measurement:
4100 lux @ 1m

intl-outdoor Convoy S3 XM-L U2 1A 3/5 mode

tailcap current measurement:
L 0.16 A
M 1.40 A
H 2.81 A

temperature measurement:
0:00 29 C
0:01 36 C
0:02 41 C
0:03 46 C
0:04 51 C
0:05 55 C
0:06 58 C
0:07 61 C
0:08 63 C
0:09 65 C
0:10 66 C

lightmeter measurement:
5300 lux @ 1m

fasttech Convoy S3 XM-L U2 1B 3 mode

tailcap current measurement:
L 0.08 A
M 0.44 A
H 1.39 A

temperature measurement:
0:00 26 C
0:01 31 C
0:02 33 C
0:03 35 C
0:04 36 C
0:05 37 C
0:06 37 C
0:07 38 C
0:08 40 C
0:09 40 C
0:10 41 C

lightmeter measurement:
3300 lux @ 1m

fasttech Convoy S2 XM-L U2 1B 3/5 mode

tailcap current measurement:
L 0.06 A
M 0.52 A
H 1.05 A

temperature measurement:
0:00 25 C
0:01 28 C
0:02 30 C
0:03 31 C
0:04 32 C
0:05 31 C
0:06 32 C
0:07 33 C
0:08 35 C
0:09 36 C
0:10 37 C

lightmeter measurement:
3000 lux @ 1m

Edited by: sb56637 on 08/26/2014 - 17:19 Reason: sb56637 replaced <!-- break --> with <!--break--> via Scanner Search and Replace module.
rivet62
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: 01/22/2013 - 11:59
Posts: 79

I have a few pics (including beamshots) to add, as soon as I figure out how to put them in Smile

mfpmax
mfpmax's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 day 8 hours ago
Joined: 09/26/2012 - 12:22
Posts: 372

Now what’s interesting is most of the “S3s” i’ve seen were Grey color(like the S2), while all of yours are black. I’d like to get another “S3” so I can get a actual black version. Right now I have a Gold one I mistakenly ordered(didn’t check the box for Grey)

Boaz
Boaz's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 days 9 hours ago
Joined: 11/07/2010 - 09:31
Posts: 5460

The Xml 5C emitter is nice and so is the driver ..  the Convoy s2  has a serious lack of knurling. If you don't mind a smooth almost slippery light than this guy might work for you . I need much more bite on a light so the convoy is asking for at least a big fat rubber band wrapped around it between the body and  the tail like a makeshift cigar grip .Otherwise it's WAY too slick a light for me. With the green gitd tailcap it almost smacks of cheap .

Sorry to hear that the s3 has the same problem ..

 that said the driver choices from fasttech are amazing and again the 5c is a nice neutral without being to warm .its a perfectly smooth beam and all flood ..thats just the way it is .Mine are running at 2.1 amps which seems to be a perfectly fine set up for this light . 

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

rivet62
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: 01/22/2013 - 11:59
Posts: 79

mfpmax, I know someone that has three black S3s. Smile Shoot me a PM if you’re interested.

mfpmax
mfpmax's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 day 8 hours ago
Joined: 09/26/2012 - 12:22
Posts: 372

Should tape them all 3 together into one light J)

RaceR86
RaceR86's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 02/22/2012 - 08:32
Posts: 3752

Thanks for sharing! Smile

BLF LED database – collaboration spreadsheet and latest news about where to buy LEDs
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/19342

sb56637
sb56637's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 hour 5 min ago
Joined: 01/08/2010 - 09:29
Posts: 4990

Thanks very much! Frontpage’d and Sticky’d.

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

bdiddle
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 45 min ago
Joined: 12/14/2012 - 14:36
Posts: 798

So what you are saying is that the S2 has a better beam than the S3, and since fasttech sells a 2.8A version, I need to buy it. Right?

Newb

Ouchyfoot
Ouchyfoot's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 hours 39 sec ago
Joined: 09/01/2012 - 06:15
Posts: 4410

Try using a Sanyo 16650 in your D25C2. A perfect fit.

rivet62
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: 01/22/2013 - 11:59
Posts: 79
bdiddle wrote:
So what you are saying is that the S2 has a better beam than the S3, and since fasttech sells a 2.8A version, I need to buy it. Right?

I’d definitely recommend the S2 over the S3 for a general purpose EDC. The 2.8A version gets hot quickly on high, but if that doesn’t bother you, go for it. I’d probably go for the 2.1A driver, myself. Either way, it’s hard to go wrong for less than $20.

rivet62
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: 01/22/2013 - 11:59
Posts: 79
Ouchyfoot wrote:
Try using a Sanyo 16650 in your D25C2. A perfect fit.

I never knew such a creature existed, and yet there it is on intl-outdoor’s web site. I think I’ll add one to my next order and see how I like it.

Thanks for the suggestion. :bigsmile:

bdiddle
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 45 min ago
Joined: 12/14/2012 - 14:36
Posts: 798
rivet62 wrote:
bdiddle wrote:
So what you are saying is that the S2 has a better beam than the S3, and since fasttech sells a 2.8A version, I need to buy it. Right?

I’d definitely recommend the S2 over the S3 for a general purpose EDC. The 2.8A version gets hot quickly on high, but if that doesn’t bother you, go for it. I’d probably go for the 2.1A driver, myself. Either way, it’s hard to go wrong for less than $20.

Yeah I already ordered the 2100mah S3, but I think I will ahve to order the S2 now.

Did you notice if any pocket clips fit them?

Newb

Ubehebe
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 3 months ago
Joined: 06/28/2012 - 01:14
Posts: 877

Great review. Wish I had read it before I bought.

Just got my 2.8 Convoy U2 from Fasttech today. And like you, every time I thumb through the modes, I keep waiting for there to be one extra mode to push it into real turbo. But I can see why they did what they did, I think. Overdrive it any more and you could boil a can of soup on it.

Having said that, it’s a great little light. Nicely built. Takes unprotected and protected 18650s. Small. About 3/4” shorter than a 501B; 1/2” smaller than the Ultrafire 2100; about the same size as the dismal (horrible beam, low power) SacredFire NF-918. So the size is definitely right.

The flood has its place for walks and around-the-house use where you don’t want to burn out your eyes.

But where is that turbo mode?

Oh and the ability to turn off disco modes is STELLAR!!!! Manufacturers take note: Hide the blinking modes or just kill ‘em altogether. They are annoying beyond words. Tear-out-your-hair annoying.

Thanks for the great review!!!!

rivet62
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: 01/22/2013 - 11:59
Posts: 79

[

bdiddle wrote:
Did you notice if any pocket clips fit them?

I tried a Solarforce L2 clip from solarforce-sales.com. It physically fit between the tailcap and body, but the tailcap did not make electrical contact. It might be possible to make it work by shimming the contact ring in the tailcap to compensate, but I haven’t done that yet.

The S2 body is 24mm in diameter, if that helps your search.

rivet62
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: 01/22/2013 - 11:59
Posts: 79

Thanks, Ubehebe.

It is a decent little light; I’m actually quite impressed with the build quality. And if you need a “room sweeper”, the S3 is your huckleberry.

I’ve played around with the S2 a bit more, comparing it to the Eagletac P20C2 and D25C2. The S2 beam profile is almost identical, and conforms well to my idea of an all-round EDC.

Good point on being able to disable the disco modes. That was the first thing I did to each light, but I failed to mention that.

bdiddle
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 45 min ago
Joined: 12/14/2012 - 14:36
Posts: 798

Have you checked if we can add a few more 7135’s easily? Get that turbo?

Newb

Ubehebe
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 3 months ago
Joined: 06/28/2012 - 01:14
Posts: 877

>>>>>Have you checked if we can add a few more 7135’s easily?

I should know how to do that, but don’t. Is there a BLF FAQ kicking around about it?

Trevi_lux
Trevi_lux's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 hours 12 min ago
Joined: 09/04/2012 - 10:52
Posts: 693

Hi
My “S3 convoy” arrives tomorrow, my only 18650 are Nitecore, do you think that will take? I am somewhat concerned, I think they are too large.

LAST REVIEWS: Maeexu SM02

Ubehebe
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 3 months ago
Joined: 06/28/2012 - 01:14
Posts: 877

>>>>> do you think that will take? I am somewhat concerned, I think they are too large.

I noticed kind of an odd thing with the S3 — so you may have a battery issue, but maybe not. I can use keepower protected, Fasttech’s Samsung and sanyo protected, teneregy, etc. But here’s the deal. The threads are anodized (or painted), so the only way you can get a contact is to screw the cap on ++ALL++ the way until it contacts the body tube. The tube top has the paint removed, which contacts the switch retainer ring. If the battery is too long, you can just remove a patch of paint on the tube and cap and that will give you a contact with the cap not screwed down all the way for long batteries.

I can see (I think) why they did this. You can leave the light in an “unarmed” state by unscrewing the switch cap by like a 1/2 turn, if you want to leave batteries in it for a long time and are concerened about shorts or whatever, or the battery draining over time. However, the downside is that some longish batteries fit pretty snugly, maybe too snugly. I get a driver whine when I use the fasttech sam/sanyo longish protecteds. Probably nothing to worry about, but maybe it is. Looking down in the barrel, the extra pressure could be causing the spring to bend and touch one of the chips or chip contacts? Or maybe it is just a peculiarity with the fasttech protected circuit.

Another neat feature: The s3 blinks when you get down to about 3 volts left in the battery. I should have let it go and see if it shut off the battery, but I didn’t. :-0

The more I use this light, the more I liike it.

Trevi_lux
Trevi_lux's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 hours 12 min ago
Joined: 09/04/2012 - 10:52
Posts: 693

Thank you very much for your quick response.
Tomorrow I will find out.

LAST REVIEWS: Maeexu SM02

garrybunk
garrybunk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 days 21 hours ago
Joined: 10/31/2011 - 09:25
Posts: 5610

rivet62 wrote:
bdiddle wrote:
Did you notice if any pocket clips fit them?
I tried a Solarforce L2 clip from solarforce-sales.com. It physically fit between the tailcap and body, but the tailcap did not make electrical contact. It might be possible to make it work by shimming the contact ring in the tailcap to compensate, but I haven't done that yet. The S2 body is 24mm in diameter, if that helps your search.

What about this clip at Wallbuys?  I have no idea what diameter it fits though - any ideas?  Ah, I see it's for a Jetbeam PC20 - EDIT - no, I think PC20 is just the clip's model number, it says "Suitable for:T20,T25,M20".  Gotta look up those diameters.

1

-Garry

garrybunk
garrybunk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 days 21 hours ago
Joined: 10/31/2011 - 09:25
Posts: 5610

Ok that clip seems to be for an Olight T20 which is stated as being 24mm diameter. 

-Garry

mfpmax
mfpmax's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 day 8 hours ago
Joined: 09/26/2012 - 12:22
Posts: 372

Fenix clip with an O-ring works as well. Pictures of the Fenix clip in the other EDC 18650 thread.

Vectrex
Vectrex's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 1 week ago
Joined: 05/01/2010 - 15:39
Posts: 2716

I wonder if the intl' outdoor clip would fit through the lanyard holes of the S2.

mfpmax
mfpmax's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 day 8 hours ago
Joined: 09/26/2012 - 12:22
Posts: 372

The issue with that is that it would hit the switch boot. I think someone mentioned or did use a clip like that but drilled new holes instead. Which probably would be better as to not intrude onto the switch boot.

Vectrex
Vectrex's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 1 week ago
Joined: 05/01/2010 - 15:39
Posts: 2716

Maybe a small countersunk bolt would fix that problem without having to damage the anodizing? The main question is, would the distance between bolts fit? For the rest I would find a way to make it work.

nekdo12
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 11 months ago
Joined: 02/07/2012 - 12:17
Posts: 394

Now I have S2 with T5 5C and 1,4A driver.
The best EDC light :bigsmile:

rivet62
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: 01/22/2013 - 11:59
Posts: 79

Congratulations, nekdo12, that sounds like a great combo.

How do you like the 5C tint? I haven’t used a light with that tint yet, but I sure like the 3C in my C8.

nekdo12
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 11 months ago
Joined: 02/07/2012 - 12:17
Posts: 394

3C is better, but 5C is also ok.
I also sended 3 requests at Fasttech for S2 with 3C. After CNY I will send another :bigsmile:

Ouchyfoot
Ouchyfoot's picture
Offline
Last seen: 7 hours 39 sec ago
Joined: 09/01/2012 - 06:15
Posts: 4410

nekdo12 wrote:
3C is better, but 5C is also ok.

…but 4C is sublime.
rivet62
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: 01/22/2013 - 11:59
Posts: 79

I’m just going to have to buy a couple more lights. My wallet weeps.

nekdo12
Offline
Last seen: 1 year 11 months ago
Joined: 02/07/2012 - 12:17
Posts: 394
nekdo12 wrote:
I also sended 3 requests at Fasttech for S2 with 3C. After CNY I will send another :bigsmile:

Come on, make a request. More requests, faster they will get 3C tint

ToyKeeper
ToyKeeper's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 hour 51 min ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 14:40
Posts: 3813

Boaz wrote:
the Convoy s2  has a serious lack of knurling. … is asking for at least a big fat rubber band wrapped around it between the body and  the tail like a makeshift cigar grip … With the green gitd tailcap it almost smacks of cheap

FWIW, the Solarforce L2 clip works nicely on these lights and provides a good grippy element for cigar-style use. You simply need to add a bit of wire or paperclip inside the tailcap to complete the circuit, since the threads are anodized and the clip will effectively lock out the switch otherwise.

This is how I keep an EDC 18650 clipped to my purse.

… also, I like the GITD boot and lens O-ring. It’s nice being able to find the thing in the dark. I don’t like a 5C tint though; it’s so yellow it hurts my eyes. 3C is about as warm as I can get.

ToyKeeper
ToyKeeper's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 hour 51 min ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 14:40
Posts: 3813

bdiddle wrote:
Did you notice if any pocket clips fit them?

Yes. A Solarforce L2 clip fits nicely, but you must add a bit of wire into the tailcap to complete the circuit. I simply bent a paperclip around an AA battery, widened it a little, and dropped it in. Works great. I had to try two different thicknesses of paperclip to get the right size though.

Here are some pictures of the result:

Sorry for all the dirt/dust in these pics… I’ve been EDCing it and I didn’t clean it first.

whokilledJR
Offline
Last seen: 8 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 06/03/2012 - 13:05
Posts: 682

Just ordered the Convoy S3 T5 5C with the 2.8A driver. :bigsmile: It’s the super wide spill comment that got me, as a wide spill is very handy for cycling and I was looking for a nicer straight tube with a NW tint compared with my current HD2011. I was considering more expensive options like the Xtar BK-12 or the Jetbeam St Cycler, however price and a lack of a NW tint was the decider. I’m hoping the spill can match a typical bike light for width. Also ordered some black tail caps to replace that horrible cheap looking green one.

ToyKeeper
ToyKeeper's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 hour 51 min ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 14:40
Posts: 3813

whokilledJR wrote:
Just ordered the Convoy S3 T5 5C with the 2.8A driver. :bigsmile: It’s the super wide spill comment that got me, as a wide spill is very handy for cycling…

I’m anxiously awaiting warmer weather so I can try my Convoy S3s on my bike at night. One of the two I got is specifically for that purpose (XP-G2 1.4A model), but it has been way too cold to go out for long at night. I should be able to get 450lm for ~2 hours or 135lm for ~7 hours from it, and I suspect 135 will be about right. My ZL H51w seems good for biking at 86lm, so a floodier 135lm should be good too.
Bort
Bort's picture
Online
Last seen: 2 min 59 sec ago
Joined: 06/01/2012 - 17:15
Posts: 6056

ToyKeeper wrote:
whokilledJR wrote:
Just ordered the Convoy S3 T5 5C with the 2.8A driver. :bigsmile: It’s the super wide spill comment that got me, as a wide spill is very handy for cycling…

I’m anxiously awaiting warmer weather so I can try my Convoy S3s on my bike at night. One of the two I got is specifically for that purpose (XP-G2 1.4A model), but it has been way too cold to go out for long at night. I should be able to get 450lm for ~2 hours or 135lm for ~7 hours from it, and I suspect 135 will be about right. My ZL H51w seems good for biking at 86lm, so a floodier 135lm should be good too.

i suspect 450 will leave a lasting impression

Reports of my clown related demise…have been slightly exaggerated
---
In Flying Spaghetti Monster we trust; all others must bring data

 

whokilledJR
Offline
Last seen: 8 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 06/03/2012 - 13:05
Posts: 682
ToyKeeper wrote:
whokilledJR wrote:
Just ordered the Convoy S3 T5 5C with the 2.8A driver. :bigsmile: It’s the super wide spill comment that got me, as a wide spill is very handy for cycling…
I’m anxiously awaiting warmer weather so I can try my Convoy S3s on my bike at night. One of the two I got is specifically for that purpose (XP-G2 1.4A model), but it has been way too cold to go out for long at night. I should be able to get 450lm for ~2 hours or 135lm for ~7 hours from it, and I suspect 135 will be about right. My ZL H51w seems good for biking at 86lm, so a floodier 135lm should be good too.

I’m sure you’ll be happy with it, any straight tube light with an OP reflector will produce a wall of light, especially xml’s, the only thing lacking in flashlights compared to bike lights is they don’t usually have as wide a spill for peripheral vision. I’ve got an old XML Titan bike light and I can’t wait to compare spill widths.

rivet62
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: 01/22/2013 - 11:59
Posts: 79

whokilledJR, I’ll be interested to see how the S3 works for you as a bike light.

I’m still working on my outdoor beamshot technique, but here’s some practice shots. The camera is set to 1/20 sec shutter, F/2.8, ISO 800, daylight white balance. The lens is a 50mm on a DX sensor body, so a slight telephoto. The shop window in the pictures is about 25m from the camera.

Zebralight SC600:

Eagletac P20C2:

Convoy S3:

Convoy M1:

ToyKeeper
ToyKeeper's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 hour 51 min ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 14:40
Posts: 3813

whokilledJR wrote:
I’m sure you’ll be happy with it, any straight tube light with an OP reflector will produce a wall of light, especially xml’s, the only thing lacking in flashlights compared to bike lights is they don’t usually have as wide a spill for peripheral vision. I’ve got an old XML Titan bike light and I can’t wait to compare spill widths.

I went out and tried it despite the cold, and it’s great. In well-lit areas it’s a bit weak (on medium, ~135lm), but then I don’t really need light — it’s only there to make sure others see me. In dark places, it nicely lights up the whole road or trail for a long way in front of me. I can use it on high (~450lm) for a couple hours too, without much risk of overheating, but other bikers will probably hate me.

As for peripheral view, I generally get that from my ZL H51w. There’s no substitute for being able to aim light with my head.

However, I could still use a nice tail light. I just have a cheap 2xAAA red blinker which doesn’t really put out much light.

whokilledJR
Offline
Last seen: 8 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 06/03/2012 - 13:05
Posts: 682

Thanks for the beam shots rivet62, out of those it does seem the S3 is the floodiest with the widest spill, I’m quite happy with my purchase now. I usually just mount 2 lights on the bar, one floody light and the Shadow JM07 I use as a thrower. Excellent light for cycling is the JM07, similar throw to a C8 but with a much wider hotspot and very usable spill. By those pics I’d say the wide spill of the S3 would match a dedicated bike light.

whokilledJR
Offline
Last seen: 8 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 06/03/2012 - 13:05
Posts: 682

Sounds good Toykeeper, can’t wait for mine. For a taillight the one I’m using is the Cygolite hotshot:

http://cygolite.com/products/hotshot2W2.html

Very bright on full power, with adjustable brightness and blinking modes and great run time with a lithium battery.

If I needed to get a new one I’d probably go the magicshine:

http://www.action-led-lights.com/collections/bike/products/mj-818-bike-t...

This thing is even brighter and much more floody, at 24.95 which is a lot cheaper when I was comparing the market a few months ago.

ToyKeeper
ToyKeeper's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 hour 51 min ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 14:40
Posts: 3813

whokilledJR wrote:
Thanks for the beam shots rivet62, out of those it does seem the S3 is the floodiest with the widest spill, … Excellent light for cycling is the JM07, similar throw to a C8 but with a much wider hotspot

FWIW, the Ultrafire HD2011 is much floodier than the Convoy S3. I went with a less floody light though (S3 w/ XP-G2), so I’d be able to see farther ahead.

I also used a XinTD C8 during my ride last night, but that’s because I was searching for my cat. I heard a cat fight and went out to make sure he was okay, and the C8 worked really well for spotting critters from a distance — just had to hold it in front of my nose for maximum reflection. I found pretty much every living creature in the neighborhood, and fortunately the fight was between two other cats.

LightSeeker
Offline
Last seen: 2 months 6 days ago
Joined: 02/14/2013 - 21:25
Posts: 63

I don’t know whether they keep tabs on this, but I put in a suggestion that they ask convoy if they’ll program the lo-med-hi outputs at 5%-30%-100% (as is the case for the x-power version) instead of having med at 60% as it is now. If it makes a difference put in a vote for it under the “I suggest you” page Wink
http://www.fasttech.com/community/isuggestyou

whokilledJR
Offline
Last seen: 8 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 06/03/2012 - 13:05
Posts: 682

ToyKeeper wrote:
whokilledJR wrote:
Thanks for the beam shots rivet62, out of those it does seem the S3 is the floodiest with the widest spill, … Excellent light for cycling is the JM07, similar throw to a C8 but with a much wider hotspot

FWIW, the Ultrafire HD2011 is much floodier than the Convoy S3. I went with a less floody light though (S3 w/ XP-G2), so I’d be able to see farther ahead.

I also used a XinTD C8 during my ride last night, but that’s because I was searching for my cat. I heard a cat fight and went out to make sure he was okay, and the C8 worked really well for spotting critters from a distance — just had to hold it in front of my nose for maximum reflection. I found pretty much every living creature in the neighborhood, and fortunately the fight was between two other cats.

Great to see at least someone’s looking out for the night critters! :bigsmile:

I’ve got the HD2011, puts out a great floody beam. How does the spill width compare to the S3? I was hoping the S3 has a larger spill, if less lumens up the middle.

ToyKeeper
ToyKeeper's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 hour 51 min ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 14:40
Posts: 3813

whokilledJR wrote:
I’ve got the HD2011, puts out a great floody beam. How does the spill width compare to the S3? I was hoping the S3 has a larger spill, if less lumens up the middle.

It looks to me as if the spill on the S3 is about the same size as the HD2011. However, the beams have different patterns… S3 is brighter in the middle with a distinct Mach band near the outer edge of the spill, and HD2011 fades more smoothly from center to edge.

A Mach band is an optical illusion which happens at the ends of a smooth gradient with flat colors on either side. It appears to have a peak or valley at the end, but it’s not real. In this image, it’s the bright horizontal line at the bottom and dark horizontal line at the top… they’re not actually any brighter or darker than the smooth area next to them, even though they may appear more intense.

Edit: Actually, I guess they both have Mach bands around the edge of the spill… it’s just more pronounced on the S3. In any case, they have about the same spill width but the HD2011 is floodier and the S3 is throwier.

whokilledJR
Offline
Last seen: 8 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 06/03/2012 - 13:05
Posts: 682

Just received my S3, my initial thoughts:

Good spill, a bit wider than the HD2011

Shallow reflector, a bit shallower than the HD2011. I can now see why people suggest the beam profile looks pale or lacking a turbo mode, the hotspot is wider than normal even for a tube light due to the reflector depth, and therefore more dispersed. It will have poor throw and won’t look so bright, however this just means it’s more floody, so just depends on what you’re after. I don’t mind that, the hotspot kind of reminds me of my dedicated bike light which is also dispersed due to being a shallow reflector. Probably would make a good bike light. The HD2011’s hotspot is more focused and looks brighter, but not as floody IMO.

Tube isn’t very grippy, kind of slippery and the square knurling isn’t very aggressive.

Head is part of the battery tube, this indeed is a tube light. Electrical conduction will be quite good, one less set of threads to worry about, although I quite like a removeable head.

Bezel is fixed.

Overall nice looking light with a good finish and nice shiny SS bezel

Hate the tacky green tail button, I’ll be replacing that very shortly.

Edit: just realised my post is almost the opposite of Toy Keepers before mine. :~

ToyKeeper
ToyKeeper's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 hour 51 min ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 14:40
Posts: 3813

whokilledJR wrote:
Just received my S3, my initial thoughts:
The HD2011’s hotspot is more focused and looks brighter, but not as floody IMO.

Edit: just realised my post is almost the opposite of Toy Keepers before mine. :~

Heh, weird. I wonder if it’s just individual sample variation or something else. Mine are the “EDC 18650” XM-L U2 from Intl-Outdoor and the HD2011 from Wallbuys. Maybe different stores have different flavors.

My HD2011 is the floodiest light I have, with the Convoy S3 being probably the second-floodiest.

blueb8llz
Offline
Last seen: 1 day 9 hours ago
Joined: 06/02/2012 - 01:16
Posts: 1986

wow a tube light thats more floody than the hd2011? thats pretty crazy there. i own 4 tube lights and the hd2011 is the floodiest.
whokilled jr, how come you ended buyint the s3 from fasttech? from looking at the op’s pictures, the s3 from international outdoor seems brighter and floodier.

whokilledJR
Offline
Last seen: 8 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 06/03/2012 - 13:05
Posts: 682

ToyKeeper wrote:
whokilledJR wrote:
Just received my S3, my initial thoughts:
The HD2011’s hotspot is more focused and looks brighter, but not as floody IMO.

Edit: just realised my post is almost the opposite of Toy Keepers before mine. :~

Heh, weird. I wonder if it’s just individual sample variation or something else. Mine are the “EDC 18650” XM-L U2 from Intl-Outdoor and the HD2011 from Wallbuys. Maybe different stores have different flavors.

My HD2011 is the floodiest light I have, with the Convoy S3 being probably the second-floodiest.

It’s quite possible, I have the grey HD2011 that I purchased locally in Vietnam about 7 months ago, perhaps different batches with slight adjustments.

Pages