Test/Review of TR-0124 14-66W 5-Mode LED Flashlight Driver for Luminus SST-90

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HKJ
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Test/Review of TR-0124 14-66W 5-Mode LED Flashlight Driver for Luminus SST-90
TR-0124 14-66W 5-Mode LED Flashlight Driver for Luminus SST-90

DSC_4081 DSC_4082
DSC_4083 DSC_4084
DSC_4085 DSC_4086
DSC_4087 DSC_4088

Driver is from Fasttech.com.

Official specifications
  • Product Type: Flashlight Driver
  • Material: Circuit Board + Copper
  • Input Voltage: 3-13 -volt
  • Output Current: 4900-5100 mA
  • Reverse Polarity Protection: Yes
  • Flashlight Modes: Hi > Mid > Lo > Strobe > SOS
  • Mode Count: 5
  • Mode Memory: Yes
  • Power Consumption: 14-66 W
  • Depth: 28 mm
  • Diameter: 32 mm




Measurements

Tested with: SST-90
Diameter: 32mm
Height: 28mm
Driver uses buck converter.
Modes: High, medium, low, strobe, sos
Light has mode memory.
A fast off/on will change to next mode.
Medium uses pwm at 125Hz and 42% duty cycle
Low uses pwm at 125Hz and 9% duty cycle
Strobe is 8Hz with 50% duty cycle



High

TR-0124%2014-66W%205-Mode%20Luminus%20SST-90%20(TR-0163)%20HL

The name of this driver is a bit misleading, it "only" uses up to about 25 watt, not 66 watt.
The driver keeps the brightness fairly stable from 4 volt to 13 volt input, but at the lower voltages it does not works as smooth as at higher voltages.

TR-0124%2014-66W%205-Mode%20Luminus%20SST-90%20(TR-0163)%20HLDriver

The driver needs some cooling, it has to get rid of between 3 watt and 5 watt. Looks like the driver changes mode somewhere between 5.5 and 6.0 volt.

TR-0124%2014-66W%205-Mode%20Luminus%20SST-90%20(TR-0163)%20HLLed

TR-0124%2014-66W%205-Mode%20Luminus%20SST-90%20(TR-0163)%20LH

The driver starts up below 3 volt and when the voltage increases it looks like the mode change happens at a higher voltage.

TR-0124%2014-66W%205-Mode%20Luminus%20SST-90%20(TR-0163)%20LHDriver
TR-0124%2014-66W%205-Mode%20Luminus%20SST-90%20(TR-0163)%20LHLed


High%2010.8V
High%207.2V

The output has some high frequency noise in it.



Medium

TR-0124%2014-66W%205-Mode%20Luminus%20SST-90%20(TR-0163)%20HL%20medium

To reduce brightness the driver uses pwm, this means that the actual curves will be close to the high curves, just with less current.

TR-0124%2014-66W%205-Mode%20Luminus%20SST-90%20(TR-0163)%20HL%20mediumDriver
TR-0124%2014-66W%205-Mode%20Luminus%20SST-90%20(TR-0163)%20HL%20mediumLed

Medium%2010.8V
Medium%207.2V

The pwm frequency is about 125Hz.



Low

TR-0124%2014-66W%205-Mode%20Luminus%20SST-90%20(TR-0163)%20HL%20low

Low is using pwm at the same frequency and again the general shape of the curves looks like high, but with lower average current.
The efficiency goes down, because the driver needs about the same power for itself as it does on high.

TR-0124%2014-66W%205-Mode%20Luminus%20SST-90%20(TR-0163)%20HL%20lowDriver
TR-0124%2014-66W%205-Mode%20Luminus%20SST-90%20(TR-0163)%20HL%20lowLed

Low%2010.8V
Low%207.2V

The duty cycle is down to 9%.



Strobe

Strobe%2010.8V
Strobe%207.2V

Strobe is at 8Hz with full brightness (As expected from a pwm driver).



SOS

SOS%2010.8V
SOS%207.2V



Conclusion

I am not impressed with the efficiency and I do also have something agains the bumps in the performace at lower voltage. It would have been nice with a low voltage warning.
Some people will not like the low pwm frequency.



Notes

How do I test a led driver
List of all tested drivers

My website with reviews of many chargers and batteries (More than 1000): https://lygte-info.dk/

ImA4Wheelr
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Thank you HKJ.  Been wondering about this driver.  I have no formal electronics training.  So my questions are probably a pretty dumb.  I'm looking at your charts and I see LED Vf's that are fairly flat and lower that what I would expect to see on many emitters.

Does you equipment try to pull the lowest possible load on the driver voltage wise?

Do you think the driver would probably be more efficient with higher Vf emitters (i.e. MT-G2)?

HKJ
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ImA4Wheelr wrote:

Thank you HKJ.  Been wondering about this driver.  I have no formal electronics training.  So my questions are probably a pretty dumb.  I'm looking at your charts and I see LED Vf's that are fairly flat and lower that what I would expect to see on many emitters.

Does you equipment try to pull the lowest possible load on the driver voltage wise?

Do you think the driver would probably be more efficient with higher Vf emitters (i.e. MT-G2)?

I uses a led as load, the actual current/voltage curve looks like this:

 

This driver uses pwm and will always use the full current.

In the lower modes I has to use a fixed Vf to get the best power calculations, i.e. I do not use a measured Vf in the charts (That would be the same as in the high chart), but simply estimate a value and uses it over the full range. This will be wrong when the driver goes out of regulation, but in regulation it will be fairly accurate and then give fairly accurate power calculations.

 

A lot of the loss in the driver is due to ohmic loss, this loss will only depend on current, not on voltage. If the driver will work with a MT-G2 6V, the loss will be the same, i.e. the efficiency will go up (Note: The MT-G2 is only rated for 3A).

My website with reviews of many chargers and batteries (More than 1000): https://lygte-info.dk/

zeremefico
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Thanks for the review.
I have used this driver with 3 li-ions & an MT-G2 and it draws 2.8a at tailcap.

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Werner
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Thanks for the review.
That driver also works for a single XML or some XMLs parallel. It’s often called the original 3T6 driver. There are a bunch of different drivers out here with different size but always same parts, some have few parallel sensing resistors some have a single R050. These are usually 4.5A constant current.
This one has an additional R300 so we see the 5A and a bit different placing of the parts.
It can easyly get resistor modded to 6A, maybe even more.

Flomotion
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Somewhere there is a mod on this using a varible pot to adjust the final current, using this pot:

http://www.fasttech.com/products/0/10002999/1224400-10-ohm-potentiometer...

Also, has anyone used this in a similar manner to drive a MT-G2?

http://www.lck-led.com/3000ma-driver-group-mode-p-1061.html?cPath=37_135

Flomotion

rGiskard
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Thanks for the review, it is very informative (as are all your reviews). I’m planning a 2× 26650 Maglite build using this driver and trying to decide between a 5P vs 2S2P XM-L2 configuration.

Does anyone have experience using this driver with two Li-ion cells to drive a 2S2P configuration? Based on the vF curves posted by Match and others, at 5 amps the 2S2P emitters (2.5A per emitter) should have about the same vF as an MT-G2 (6.8V), so in theory it should work, but I wonder how practical it would be since the vF is so close to the battery voltage. How much headroom is actually needed over the vF voltage?

Since HKJ mentioned that losses in this driver are mostly ohmic, is it correct to assume that using higher voltage with less current will be more efficient? In other words, will the driver have the same power loss with 5A at 6.8V and 5A at 3.4V, thus being more efficient at the higher voltage?

djozz
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Thanks for the review.

The TF marking on the driver I recognize from Trustfire flashlights.

TheGloriousTachikoma
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This is the driver that came in my off-brand X6. 80% efficiency, but it drives a MT-G2 to five amps just fine.

ImA4Wheelr
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This is question that probably would need detailed analysis of the circuit to truly answer, but I'm just asking for a "hunch" type answer.  Do you think the ohmic loss (This is caused by Resistance, correct?) could be mostly due to the mystery FET's used on this driver?  I'm playing with the idea of substituting in the FET's Comfychair has been using a lot lately (70N02's).

Thanks for the detailed pics.  My guess it that the trace coming out from under the MCU (not visually from one of the pins) and going around to the veritical board is the PWM line.  Also thinking of doing a Werner mod, but totally replacing in the MCU with a 105C driver.   Hoping the MCU is not crucial to the bucking function of the driver.

EDIT: Fixed typo.

HKJ
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I have a suspicion that the main reason for the losses is the diode, at these power level synchronous rectification is much better.

My website with reviews of many chargers and batteries (More than 1000): https://lygte-info.dk/

ImA4Wheelr
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Thank you HKJ.  Off to google synchronous rectification and see what high amp drivers have it.

HKJ
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ImA4Wheelr wrote:
Off to google synchronous rectification and see what high amp drivers have it.

Synchronous rectification is basically to replace the diode with a FET transistor. This will lower the power loss in the rectification drastically. For it to work the switching controller must support it, i.e. must be able to control the extra transistor.

My website with reviews of many chargers and batteries (More than 1000): https://lygte-info.dk/