Review: Klarus RS1A ("built-in charging function series")

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fran82
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Review: Klarus RS1A ("built-in charging function series")

Klarus RS1A

Reviewer's Overall Rating: ★★★★★

flas plus

 

Summary:

Battery: 1x AA (Ni-Mh with charging function) - Alkalines can be used, but without charging function
Switch: Electronic switch
Modes: 4 (Low, Med, High + a hidden variable frequency Strobe)
LED Type: XP-G2
Lens: Coated glass lens
Tailstands: Yes
Price Paid: 59$
From:DealExtreme
Date Ordered: April 2013

 

 

Pros:

  • Well implemented charging idea
  • Good output with just 1xAA
  • Full regulated output
  • Quality finish, robust
  • Good charging circuitry and charging indicator
  • Good, robust, smooth SQUARE threads!!
  • Includes a holster (plus the typical o-rings, lanyard, clip, USB charging cable, user manual, etc...)

Cons:

  • No room in the holster for the charging cable
  • Parasitic drain (electronic switch)
  • Clip not reversible
  • No 14500 support (only Ni-Mh or Alcalines are supported)

 

 

Features / Value: ★★★★★

 As I said in some of my reviews, I really like lights powered with AA batteries, specially if they have good electronics to give good and constant output/runtime. Obviously, this Klarus RS1A is in that top-notch category. No need to mention, specially taking into account the price, that this flashlight is a winner, in terms of efficiency/output/quality etc... in the 1xAA category, of course.

The thing that makes this one different, apart from the quality/efficiency/output... is that it has a "built-in charging circuitry/funtion" that avoids you the need to carry a battery charger with you. You just need the flashlight, the included USB charging cable and a Ni-Mh battery inside the flashlight to charge it (of course, you need a 5v USB power source. But think the possibilities: in the car with a 12 to 5v usb adapter, in the computer directly connected to USB, in your house using a AC to USB adapter, etc...)

For 59$ you get a high quality light, with a respectable constant output of 210 lumen during a bit more than 1 hour at max mode + the "battery charger inside" mentioned above... Seems expensive at first glance, but, take into account the quality you get and the charging function it includes.

 Regarding again about the price, I have to say, that 59$ is the lowest price I have seen from a reputable seller. Thie typical price for this light varies between 63$ and 79.95$ in most shops... while DX is offering this for 59$, which is, IMO a good price for a good flashlight. I have seen it being sold for 58$, but I dont trust that shop...

 

 

 

Design / Build Quality:  ★★★★★

Klarus made a good job on the retail package. It is a nice and relatively big box, where we find the flashlight, the holster and two plastics bags carrying the USB charging cable and the accesories (o-rings, SS clip, bucle ring, lanyard...). Also we find the user manual.

bbox

The flashlight, at first glance, appears well built, solid and with a nice looking. It seems that it is made from 2 parts: the body and the tailcap. The only part that seems that has threads, is the tailcap. I think that the rest (the body) is a single piece part... In a very nice gray gunmetal color.

Let´s see the photo from left to right. The first you see, is the assault crown (made of SS). Then the "head" with some grooves and a "protuberance" for the electronic switch with a soft rubber button (surrounded via a square SS frame and torx screws). No knurling on the head, just the grooves... Then the middle part, where the Klarus logo is, with soft diamond knurling... In this part is where the SS clip is firmly attached... Finally the tailcap with more soft diamond knurling...

body

Now let´s see the tail part. The most relevant is the big "contact zone" for the charging connector sorrounded via a transparent plastic ring where the charging indicator is located. There are two "big holes" for attaching a lanyard. A bit unstable sometimes to keep it tailstanding, but.. it ´s ok.

tail

Looking towards the led. The (slightly orange-peel) reflector is deeper that I thought before having the light. Is very deep, perhaps the same as in the P2A. The LED is a perfectly centered XP-G2 .

led

The threads are square cut type, similar to the ones present in the P2A (perhaps a bit thinner). They are not anodized, but they are great!. I think that the parasitic drain is impossible to avoid. I think the only way is to take out the battery....

threads

threads

It seems to have a "piston" inside the battery tube. No, it is not a piston... I would say that is a "cylinder" inside a "cylinder"... That is part of the "charging function"... I mean, it is necessary to allow the charge of the battery. Also I wonder where is the circuitry that makes this possible. I dont know how this "system" works... When charging, the flashlight heats up, specially in the tailcap.

piston

I never saw a tailcap with 3 small screws inside (perhaps the circuitry is there).

screws

 

Propietary charging cable: that means that, if you loose it, or damage it, you will not be able to use the charging function unless you get a new one from Klarus. IMO, micro USB would be better... but... it is ok... This special cable/system allows you a "tactical" connect/disconnect function in case of emergency. To connect, simply approach the round connector, about 5 centimeters from the tail, and it will automatically (fly!!!) connect to the charging port. To disconnect, simply remove it. Very nice!

 

 

 

Battery Life: ★★★★

I still have not tested 2500mAh batteries with it. I just have tested 2000mAh ones.

With a 2000mAh BTone I got 55 minutes runtime on High mode until "out of regulation" (I mean, the big drop of the output...). So I guess that with 2500mAh batteries I will get the declared 70 minutes runtime. Not bad for a light that uses only 1xAA and gives a constant output of 210ANSI lumens.

Runtimes on MED and LOW not measured XP.

 

Charging proccess:

It has a 500mA charging current. For me, it is nor fast nor slow. The charging process is fully automatic (it will stop when the battery is full). The flashlight heats up during the charge process, specially in the tailcap area...

I still have not charged 2500mAh batteries with it, only 2000mAh batteries. One 2000mAh battery, completely discharged took exactly 5 hours to be recharged. That is exactly what Klarus says in the specifiactions.

I am impressed on how good works the "magnetic connection". It automatically attaches to the flashlight if you approach the end of the cable to about 5cm near the contacts in the end of the tailcap...

Charging indicator:

It works as follows: when charging, it keeps blinking. When fully charged, it remains steady (not blinking). The color of the indicator is BLUE. (Sadly, no low voltage warning via the indicator, it is just a charging indicator... XP)

 

Electronic switch:

 The manual says: " Long press 0.6s to lock emitting mode; Under lighting mode, long press to switch mode, single click to turn off; Under any status, double click side button into fast strobe mode (Double click interval within 1.5ms, otherwise it will defaulted 2 times of single click operation); Memory mode: When lighting over 3 seconds, it will defaulted memory the mode."

 

 

It seems that there is no way to avoid the parasitic drain, because the threads are not anodized....

It has memory mode function... 100% functional.

Despite the allowed voltage range says between 0.9v and 1.8v, it does not say if it can work with a Lithium Primary cell. It only "says" AA battery supported. I guess that it will work. Of course 14500 not!!!

 

 

 

Light Output:  ★★★★★

 I dont have light meter. So I have to trust my eyes. Klarus declares 210 ANSI lumens on HIGH (1.1 hours), 35 lumen on MED (9 hours), 7 lumen on LOW (68 hours), 210 lumen on STROBE (2.2 hours).

 My eyes tell me that it produces a bit less lumens (210) than the Klarus P2A/Jetbeam BA20 (245/270 declared lumens). I mean, I trust the specifications regarding the lumens output and runtime on all modes.

Some beamshots:

LOW at 1 meter, white wall:

low

MED at 1 meter, white wall:

MED

HIGH at 1 meter, white wall:

HIGH

OK, it seems that the camera can not see the difference at a such short distance, let´s move on 3meters distance:

.

LOW at 3 meters, white wall:

LOW

MED at 3 meters, white wall:

MED

HIGH at 3 meters, white wall:

HIGH

 Well balanced in flood/throw.

 

 

Summary: ★★★★★

As I have said, this light, despite it´s price, offers the charging function among the typical Klarus offerings: quality, efficiency, robustness, etc.... so, taking that into account what it offers, I dont think it is expensive at all.

Very nice flashlight to avoid carring a battery charger with you (you just only need the flashlight, a battery inside, and the USB charging cable)

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Edited by: sb56637 on 08/26/2014 - 17:06
fran82
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Hi guys!

Review finished, sorry for the delay. If anyone has any question… Beer

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Trevi_lux
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Thanks fran82, nice review and nice flashlight.
Maybe in the future I incorporate this great aa to my collection. Big Smile

fran82
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Trevi_lux wrote:
Thanks fran82, nice review and nice flashlight. Maybe in the future I incorporate this great aa to my collection. Big Smile

Gracias! It will satisfy you, beleive me.

This post/thread "may" contain referrals, a little contribution I "earn" in form of points ONLY if you buy the item. The purpose is to redeem items using the points and then making reviews of them in the forums to shar

sb56637
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Thanks a lot for the review! Frontpage’d and Sticky’d.

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