REVIEW: Lumintop SD10 WARM WHITE(CREE XM-L2 U2 3C) 3xAA/D/18650/26650/32650 flashlight

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vēer
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REVIEW: Lumintop SD10 WARM WHITE(CREE XM-L2 U2 3C) 3xAA/D/18650/26650/32650 flashlight

I received it an hour ago, so its work in progress, this is your chance to raise specific questions related to this light, I will do my best to answer them all!

Whats included in package:

First impressions:

+ Tint, compared to my D40A Neutral White is visibly warmer, closer to the incan’s level, but not overly so! SD10 uses XM-L2 U2 3C
+ Starts on LOW, goes to HIGH, then goes to MED. Fast cycle through all modes will bring up strobe, strobe can be accessed also by double pressing on/off button when light is on.
+ Has mode memory even if you unscrew the tailcap.
+ Can be locked out by fraction of a turn.
+ Build quality is very good.
+ Very lightweight.
+ White wall beam profile seems clean
+ It has wider hotspot than D40A, thus making it more floodier

UPDATE:

This is my FULL review of Lumintop SD10 flashgliht!

(Tailstands perfectly!)

General:

It has Cree XM-L2 U2 3C warm white LED, unlike regular SD10 which ships with XM-L2 U2 1A in cold white.

Comes with cheap 3xAA adapter and cheap looking lanyard(more on that later), no holster included with this light.

Takes almost any cylindrical battery out there starting from single AA battery(with adapter) and going up to the big boys – lithium batteries, namely 18650, 26650 and 32650! Official specs list D, 3xAA and 18650-32650 batteries. But if you use your creative mind you can use all sorts of AAA-AA and AA-D adapters both for alkaline/Ni-Mh and for lithium batteries such as 10440, 14500 and up to 32650.

(Springs in tailcap and in head of the light)

I was unable to get 4xAA Turnigy Ni-Mh’s into the light, it would damage wrapper on batteries and most likely it would be impossible to remove battery carrier from light afterwards :D! I used 4xAAA Turnigy’s with AA adapters which fit just fine and the light is really bright with this setup, as bright as with lithium batteries to my naked eye!

Generic alkaline D cell, 1AA/2AA to D adapter, 4xAA/AAA holder, 3xAA holder, 18650 DIY tube adapter, protected 18650:

NO reverse polarity protection, so make sure that youre insterting battery or battery carrier correct way, otherwise you might end up with fried light.

User interface:

Operation is quite simple – you turn on the light by pressing on/off button and holding it till the light lights up, it takes less than a second to do so, you turn it off the same way.

It has 3 main modes, high, medium, low and hidden strobe which you access by simply double pressing power button when the light is on.

One interesting feature here that I also like about this light is that its switch will light up green when pressed, its a good indicator that the batteries are inserted and that it should function normally.

Tint:

Now, regarding its tint – its really, really warm, not neutral, not even close, its really yellowish/orange, depending how you perceive colors.

I personally prefer more neutral tints, but this doesnt bother me at all, especially given that Ive used this light outdoors in wilderness and for that this light shines.

Heres the white-wall shot with EA8W, SD10 warm white and D40A NW(neutral):

You might not notice, but in real life D40A appears to be the most neutral of them all, EA8W coming as second and SD10 being the warmest one, in fact, warmth of EA8W cant be noticed during real life use, unless you compare it with D40A NW face-to-face that is.

Output:

Regarding output – this light will run just fine with either single AA battery inserted into cheapo D cell adapter as seen above in battery adapter group-shot, naturally, the lower the voltage, the dimmer the light, thus maximum output will be achieved with either 3xAA/4xAA batteries or with lithium batteries.

I compared output on HIGH between EA8W, D40A NW and SD10 and, as expected, EA8W throws the farthest, next is D40A NW and then SD10, which is very good given that EA8W is dedicated 8xAA thrower with biggest and deepest SMO reflector of them all! While reflectors on D40A NW and SD10 seem similar in sizes, the one in D40A NW is deeper, thus better for throw and has smaller hotspot, which adds to tighter beam, both have OP reflectors.

Output is visible up to 400 meters in city against gray/yellow multi-story building. However, thats about as far as it goes, EA8W and D40A NW will outthrow this light, but everything past 100-200m with SD10/D40A NW will be unusable, EA8W is usable past around 300 meters, but you will want to use some optic vision enhancers given that even daytime its not easy to identify targets and details at this distance.

Even though SD10 will not throw as far as competition, it makes it up with its wider hotspot and thus floodier beam which is nice when you consider that this light is intended for universal use and not as a light sabre!

One thing that SD10 lacks is ultra-low/moonlight mode, both EA8W and D40A NW have ultra low modes. However, regular low mode is low enough for most around the house tasks, especially if you use D or AA batteries in this light, the lower the voltage, the lesser the output in all modes.

PWM:

PWM is present, but not distracting in my sample, Lumintop confirmed that they use PWM, even tho I didnt ask whats the frequency on it.

I was concerned that I might get turned off by PWM, but in real life use I never noticed it and it has never bothered me, however, if you try hard and look for it, you might notice it. Or you might not.

What else?

For the price Lumintop asks for this light(MSRP 59.99$) they should have added nice holster with it, their competitors have done so. I understand why Lumintop dont see this as an issue – theirs can be used with almost any(when using multiple adapters) cylindrical battery out there up to the size of 32650 while Sunwayman/Nitecore both are dedicated AA Ni-Mh players so lack of holster might not be an issue for most. I for one would love to see holster at this price point no matter if its multi-chemistry light like SD10 or dedicated AA Ni-Mh/Alkaline light like EA8W/D40A NW.

Also, better quality 3xAA adapter is a must to increase SD10 output, because mfgs stated 500 lumens look more like 200-250 lumens and look to be on par with D40A NW’s medium mode!

And yes, adapter for 18650 would be also nice bonus!

Included lanyard looks cheap and it proved that its also cheaply made, at least part of it – one of the attachments broke off the first day when I started using this light outdoors, without any abuse from my part. You attach small loop to the light itself and then attach the main lanyard to the small ring on the small loop/lanyard attachment thingy.

This small part didnt last long and the small thread just detached from it.

I then simply attached the small ring to the light and then snapped the carabiner/clamp(which is quite strong) of the main lanyard on it and it has worked fine since then.

My light came with one small fault – when using 3xAA batteries or others with higher total voltage, the LED would light up even if the light wasnt turned on, the only way to avoid it is physical lockout by simply turning tailcap counter-clockwise for few milimeters.

Lumintop assured me that this is not normal and that all lights should be working properly and that my review sample is simply defective.

On the other hand, mine now has ultra-low/moonlight mode when used with 3xAA and up batteries :D!

Verdict:

Given the number of batteries that his light supports, it is very versatile flashlight and one that would be perfect as emergency light that can utilize most common sized batteries out there, all you need is couple of adapters and you’re set for that apocalypse!

Id give it 8 out of 10 for what it is despite some of its shortcomings – lack of ultra low mode and lack of holster and higher quality battery holder/adapters.

Edited by: sb56637 on 09/02/2017 - 11:48
MRsDNF
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Thanks for starting the review. This is one light I’m interested in and looking forward to your conclusion. If this has a good driver they should sell it as a stand alone item. Cheers.

 

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so this is the famous SD10 that can use a wide selection battery chemistry.
on my wish list Big Smile

edit:
i wish the AA battery carrier can be better and that side switch remind me EA4 series,i hope it build last long unlike EA4 :~

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To me side switch feels sturdy and reliable, I dont know why people panic over these(SD10, D40A) electronic switches :D?

ezarc
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Aside from the crappy looking battery carrier this looks like a nice light, one I have considered because it can use a single D cell.

Looking forward to the finished review.

hazy
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vēer wrote:
To me side switch feels sturdy and reliable, I dont know why people panic over these(SD10, D40A) electronic switches :D?

One name: EA4.
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The one on my EA8 seems sturdy enough, time and wear on it will tell the true story tho ;)!

hazy
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leaftye wrote:

hazy wrote:
vēer wrote:
To me side switch feels sturdy and reliable, I dont know why people panic over these(SD10, D40A) electronic switches :D?
One name: EA4.

It doesn’t even look the same, and that’s because it’s a different material.  Nitecore has even changed their switch material since then.

 

The only real reason to be scared is because aftermarket replacement switches are not available unlike with the ubiquitous silicon boot for rear clickies, although even with those it can be impossible to find a perfectly fitting replacement.


Its not the looks, you can’t tell a thing about the switch by looking at it, I’m sure most of the people that are apprehensive have had crappy electric switches. And I don’t mean just on flashlights, I’ve had them go on everything from microwaves to refrigerators (though they seem to be getting better with the ones on appliances). End of the day clicky’s usually feel WAY more durable and are way easier to replace/repair.
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Arent electric switches being used in computer mice?
Those seem to last forever.

hazy
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According this yeah they are actually http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miniature_snap-action_switch, interesting I didn’t know that.

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Whats more of a concern is, IMO, covers used on switches, even tho there isnt much of a friction/movement going on with these switches, they might wear out covers in pretty aggressive manner, couldnt they?

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I do agree it is really the cover/boot that ends up being the problem, with the ones I’ve had go bad its always just a matter of them no longer making the connection not the actual switch failing.

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Thanks for the review. The Lumintop SD10 looks a very handy flashlight to use.

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Where did you get that XM-L2 U2 3C neutral white version?

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Directly from Lumintop.
Oh and its quite warm to my eyes, much warmer than that of D40A NW or EA8W!

I hope I will get a chance to experiment with DSLR and do some proper beamshots tomorrow night, so this review should be ready by monday/tuesday latest ;)!

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Ah, http://www.lumintop.com/Products_45.html 

I like the 3C tint, maybe I should order directly from them, too...

Hm, how do you order from them? And what is the price?

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Sorry for miscommunication, I obtained it for review from Lumintop, they were kind enough to send me one to see how good it is against their AA competition, D40A NW as well as EA8W to some extent, its naturally that they are curious to see what people have to say about their premium price light vs other similarly priced and specced lights.

So far they are winning on battery compability big time, there is simply no other light like this in the market today, is there?

If you want to buy it, you could ask their skype rep, very helpful and professional person, his/her name is Jell, very timely and detailed answers ;)!

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DrJones wrote:

Where did you get that XM-L2 U2 3C neutral white version?


yeah, that caught my attention too.

My gratitude to those who are willing and able to help others (in whatever way you can)! Being human is more than just existing for yourself. Smile

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I cant find any information regarding this LED, but Lumintop assured me that theres no typo and that it is really the name of this LED and not XM-L2 T6 3C :D!

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vēer wrote:
I cant find any information regarding this LED, but Lumintop assured me that theres no typo and that it is really the name of this LED and not XM-L2 T6 3C :D!

But Cree doesn’t make an XM-L2 U2 3C :~

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Yeah, but Lumintop said that they are sure its what they call it :D!

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lol! lumintop needs to take some pics of the bin code! Big Smile

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Little update – it was rather foggy+camera didnt perform up to the task so beamshots will be delayed for a week.
I will try, however, to finalise my review in coming days in order not to postpone it for too long ;)!

Thanks for understanding to those, who are interesting in this review and I will keep you all updated :)!

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What is the ID of the Body tube??

That 4AA holder with Eneloops in it, measures at 35.5mm in Diameter and 35.6mm would be better, for clearance.

I've got one of these coming and if it will hold a 4AA holder, I could see it with an MT-G2 and 2s/2p 14500s DD.

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XML U2 3C

I bought some of these some time ago. In my amateur opinion, they seem like they really are 3C.  Haven't tried to test output to see if not T6, but I trust the vendor.  There is also a picture of the Cree label there.

Looking forward to the full review veer Smile

EDIT: I'm a ditz.  I missed the 2 in XML2.  I haven't heard of this emitter either.

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oRAirwolf wrote:
vēer wrote:
I cant find any information regarding this LED, but Lumintop assured me that theres no typo and that it is really the name of this LED and not XM-L2 T6 3C :D!
But Cree doesn't make an XM-L2 U2 3C :~

On their website (http://www.lumintop.com/Products_45.html#.UkCcRxvD_mE) they are saying XM-L2 T6, so probably that's what it is because I don't see how a 3C tint exists in the U2 bin either - don't think the Lumintop source there knows, maybe... If it did exist, everyone would be jumping all over it - no sacrificing output for a neutral tint, how it should be.

Interesting ImA4Wheelr - that CREE label does look legit from the Convoy guy - think Simon?? If they did it for XML's, maybe a batch was released for XM-L2's, but strange we are not hearing of it anywhere else...

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Old-Lumens wrote:

What is the ID of the Body tube??


That 4AA holder with Eneloops in it, measures at 35.5mm in Diameter and 35.6mm would be better, for clearance.


I’ve got one of these coming and if it will hold a 4AA holder, I could see it with an MT-G2 and 2s/2p 14500s DD.


My digital caliper shows </=34.88mm.

Im still waiting for my 4xAA adapter from FT, so cant confirm whether it will ever fit or not.

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I have 4xAA adapter from FT, and it tight fit.

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vēer wrote:
My digital caliper shows </=34.88mm.

 

I'm still waiting for my 4xAA adapter from FT, so cant confirm whether it will ever fit or not.

The holder itself should fit, but not with batteries. If you find some undersized NiMHs (smaller OD), it might work, but probably not.

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Finally updated review, its done now, see original post :D!

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If I wanted one of these in the 3C, I presume Lumintop is the only place to order them from? And I don’t see an actual order form. so I guess I need to fill out the order online and have someone contact me?

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