Review: Sunwayman F40A (4*AA XM-L2 , blue and red)

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ChibiM
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Review: Sunwayman F40A (4*AA XM-L2 , blue and red)

Sunwayman F40A
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the little colonel

or

880 Lumens Tri-colored-Light-Source Powerful Flashlight.
(quote from the Sunwayman website)

Short intro:

Sunwayman currently has 3 different models in the Falcon Series. All include multi-colored leds.
Blue and Red.

  1. The F10R (CR123/16340) reviewed here
  2. The F20C (2*CR123/2*16340/1*18650)
  3. The F40A (4*AA)

Short history:

No, it wasn`t Sunwayman to follow Nitecore or any other recently released multi-colored light, but rather the opposite. Sunwayman had a multicolored flashlights, called the M40C way back in 2010.
Some characteristics resemble the F40A...read on

 

Specifications

Brand/model

Sunwayman F40A

LED

CREE XM-L2

Working voltage

2.8-6V

Battery

4xAA

Switch

Side switch

Modes:

5 Turbo, High, Medium, Low + firefly

Other modes: 7 Red,Blue,SOS,strobe,police strobe

SOS/Strobe

Yes

Mode changing

Side switch

Anodizing

HAIII

Tail-stand

Yes

Lock-out

Yes

Momentary On

No

Coated glass lens

Yes

Reflector

Smooth

Waterproof

IPX8

Shop

DX.com

Provided for review

Link is a traffic tracking link, not affiliated

 

What you get:

  • F40A flashlight
  • White diffuser (Picture here)
  • Lanyard
  • 2 spare O-rings
  • Documents: Warranty card, Products brochure, Manual

 

Handling and feel:

My initial thoughts where that this light may be a bit slippery, because of the lack of any aggressive knurling.
But I am surprised that especially due to the use of a Matte finish, the grip isnt as bad as I thought.

Another noteworthy detail are the different buttons it uses when comparing it with its older brother, the D40A (reviewed here). They now use rubber buttons.
This helped the overal handling quite a bit, when handling it with bare hands.
If you are using hand gloves, it`s still be difficult to handle just as is.
F40A on the left, D40A on the right:


The body style with the grooves on the upper segment of the body, as well as on the button resembles the T45C I reviewed earlier. As well as the older multi colored Sunwayman flashlight, the M40C.
They seemed to have used the matte finish anodizing mainly for the purpose of grip.. (that`s what I think)

Anodizing

is done properly, and I can`t find any blemish.
The matte finish will unfortunately be more prone to visible blemish, like scuffs and scratches.

The prints are also clean and done well.. Nothing to complain here.


One negative thing that I observed fairly quickly was the LED being a little off-center.
Unscrewing the bezel, and screwing it back on helped it to center it much better.
Somehow the centering ring doesn`t work 100%. It will shift a little to the sides when screwing the bezel on.

What kind of Battery carrier?

none, they didnt use a battery carrier this time... and that`s what most people prefer over the D40A, that uses one, which makes it a little harder to change batteries.

The batteries are in series. Although the specs say working voltage to be from 2.8V to 6V. I couldnt get it to work with only 2 batteries.. Which could be considered a Con.


Threads:

Dry! but square..
That could be another Con for some...
It`s definitely not one of the smoothest lights out there, and twisting the tail cap needs a little more power than a usual tailcap. Thats probably because of the tailcap design that been around for a while now, just like with the Nitecore EA4 and EA8.
Some lubrication would have been nice.. But as with my XinTd X3, that came bone dry, I had a second thought about pre-lubricated threads.. Especially with some cheaper lights, the lubrication contains usually some dust and dirt, which doesn`t really help with the smoothness anyway.

When dry, you can easily clean the threads, and apply your own lubricant. So for me this is not a Con!!

Lens and reflector:

The reflector is 25mm diameter, and 25mm deep.
It`s smooth, which helps the "throw" a little bit, but give it a really nice all-round beam, as can be seen in my beamshots..

The lens is coated!


 

Dimensions and weight:

I will include a table for comparison with the D40A

  Sunwayman F40A Sunwayman D40A
Length 11 cm 12 cm
Diameter head 42 mm 40 mm
Reflector diameter 25 mm 34 mm

Reflector depth

25 mm 34 mm

Weight

182 grams 170 grams
With 4*eneloop AA 286 grams 274 grams
Throw (manufacturer) 13200 cd 24800 cd
Throw (my measurement) 13375 cd 23500 cd

 

The UI:

The F40A uses 2 side-switches

    • M-button (Modes)
    • Power button (On/Off)

4 main modes and 1 firefly-mode

  • Turbo (steps down to High at 3 minutes 30 seconds)
  • High
  • Medium
  • Low

Click "power button" for ON
Click "M-button" to change modes, Turbo-High-Medium-Low.. in that order

Firefly mode:
Press and hold the "M-button" for 2 seconds to enter moon-mode (firefly) either from OFF or ON

Mode memory works instantly..(also for firefly-mode)

2 Blinkies:

SOS:
When the light is ON in one of the main modes, double click the "M-button" to enter SOS mode.

Strobe:
When the light is either OFF or ON, double click the "power-button" to enter Strobe mode.

4 Special modes: Tri-colored modes:

  • Red
  • Blue
  • Police strobe 1 ;red+blue
  • Police strobe 2 ;red+blue+white

Red:
When the light is OFF, Press and hold the power button for 2 seconds, and the 5 mm red leds will turn on.

Blue:
When the light is in RED mode, click the "M-button" to change to Blue.

Police strobe 1, Red-Blue (Youtube video here)
When in the light is in Blue mode, click the "M-button" to change to police strobe 1

Police strobe 2, Red-Blue-White (Youtube video here)
When the light is in Police strobe 1, click the "M-button" to change to police strobe 2

Video uploading here

Electronic Lock-Out

Press and Hold BOTH buttons in OFF mode to enter Lock-Out. (the light will give a series of fast flashes which indicates the light is now in Lock-Out.
Repeat the operations (press and hold both buttons) to return to normal use.

PWM

Nothing that I could detect with the naked eye!

Performance:

Tested with 4xAA standard  3rd gen eneloop batteries.
Its basically a 100-60-30-5 layout.

My measurements :

  • Turbo: 100%
  • High: 59%
  • Medium: 27%
  • Low: 5%
    and
  • Firefly

 

Runtime:

I set the flashlight in Turbo mode,and recorded the lux numbers every 5 minutes.

The Turbo mode lasted 3minutes and 30 seconds before entering High mode.
Because I only recorded each 5 minutes, the actual drop in output at 3:30 can`t be seen in the above graph.
The light continued in High mode, for 85 minutes, and at 90 minutes it dropped to Medium, when it finally dropped to Low at 93 minutes.
So I would say that this light has a runtime of 1.5hours in High mode (being the start from Turbo), using standard eneloop batteries.

Throw:

The F40A is definitely not a great thrower, but is on the other hand a very nice all-rounder that fits in your jacket pockets, and uses 4 AA batteries.
The throw I measured with the F40A was 13375cd While I measured 23500cd with the D40A
The D40 is therefore a much better thrower. But the spill on the F40A makes it good for closer up.
Especially considering that the F40A will come with an extra white diffuser.

 

Beamshots comparison

(Shot with Fujifilm F200EXR M mode f3.3 0.5sec iso 400)


Control shot


F40A turbo


D40A
Mouse over is F40A
You can see the very useful spill of the F40A... I like the beam a lot!

XinTd x3 xml T6 4C with 3xeneloop AA.
Mouse over is F40A
I have some problems with the battery carrier.. the light seems to have some contact issues.. but the F40A definitely holds its own.

Jetbeam RRT-21 1xXML 18650 just for a comparison
mouse over F40A

Conclusion:

The F40A is a very nice all-rounder!!!

PROS:

  • Powered by 4*AA batteries (safe and available everywhere)
  • Bright, ceiling bounce numbers same as D40A in Turbo
  • Compact with only 11cm length
  • Improved rubber control buttons
  • Multi-colored leds?? not sure if that`s a pro, might well be a con
  • not using a battery carrier
  • Firefly mode
  • Hidden blinkies

 

CONS:

  • Threads came dry, unlubricated
  • Led arrived off-center
  • not able to use just 2xAA batteries
  • Matte finish seems to show blemishes easier (I would still prefer the more shiny D40A)
  • multicolored leds?? not sure if thats a con, might well be a pro Wink
  • Buttons are still a little difficult to use... a bit more space in between the buttons would have helped
  • Step-down at 3:30, but the light got pretty hot, so that might be a pro as well
  • no holster included
  • Retail price

If you are looking for a short 4AA light, that has a very low Low, and can use in Turbo mode with about 800-900 lumens
and use Red and Blue leds, with disco police strobe, This is the light to get.

if you don`t want the Red and Blue leds, and police strobe,I would definitely go for the D40A

Edited by: ChibiM on 01/19/2018 - 13:30
ChibiM
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Use coupon BL5F for 5% off at dx.com ..........


A few more details and pictures, which don`t need to be mentioned in the review:

The F40A will fit nice and snug in the holster of the D40A.

 

Size comparison with a few other well know lights, so its more visible what

the size actually is

HD2010,        F40A,                D40A,                  Convoy S2+

 

Sunwayman F40A versus D40A:

D40A has more throw. and a slightly higher output

F40A has no battery carrier, and due to the buttons easier to use.

 

DayLighter
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Ugh.. this review came out just a little too late as the group buy on this light is over now.. I’ve been trying to tell them that this is indeed a nice light and worth every penny although is not as throwy as it’s brother D40A but for $6 dollar more than the group buy price for D40A ( which is $50 ) it’s not a bad light at all.. especially it comes with that free diffusor and not too mention that attention getter “police” strobes Wink

Banggood still have it cheaper than the rest at $67 ( and don’t forget the BLF coupon ) Smile

The only way to do a great work is to love what you do.

optntdr13
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The group buy was spectacular btw, TY! Mine arrived in 3 days via DHL, cost me a whopping 7 bucks extra. Can I tell you how much fun I have with the 2nd police mode… >)

ChibiM
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few more pictures coming soon

M4D M4X
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very good review!

 

already member of M4DM4X.com ?

the best deals are waiting for YOU!

 

before you buy elsewhere mail me: MARTIN@M4DM4X.COM - i will try to save you money!

DayLighter
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optntdr13 wrote:
The group buy was spectacular btw, TY! Mine arrived in 3 days via DHL, cost me a whopping 7 bucks extra. Can I tell you how much fun I have with the 2nd police mode… >)

$7 extra is ain’t that bad at all.. I would definitely pay that so I can play with it faster Big Smile

The only way to do a great work is to love what you do.

Chloe
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Thanks for the review, ChibiM! ^^

I had forgotten it was this SWM light that had the red/blue strobes and not the recent Nitecore offerings. What are they like?

ChibiM
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Updated the review with some additional info and more pictures

also:

Video of the Police strobe just uploaded:
Police strobe 1, Red-Blue can be seen here
Police strobe 2, Red-Blue-White can be seen here

The video camera had difficulty with capturing the strobes as our eyes see them.. Especially with the 2nd police strobe, which adds the white flashes..

jpil
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Thanks for the review, videos and the pictures!

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groupbuyprice is on again!

THX banggood!

-> Code GBF40A gives 54,99 USD

 

already member of M4DM4X.com ?

the best deals are waiting for YOU!

 

before you buy elsewhere mail me: MARTIN@M4DM4X.COM - i will try to save you money!

Chloe
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Thanks for the videos of the strobes!

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you`re welcome!

Lightspeed
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Nice thorough review ChibiM. I’ve read a few other reviews for this light, and like that yours provides an abundance of practical information. I was pleased to see your pic, with reflector removed, showing how the perimeter LEDs connect to the board inside.

I ordered one of these a couple weeks ago, but haven’t received it yet—I guess I should have paid for express shipping.

I’ll have to wait until I see it in person, but my initial thoughts are that I wish, for durability sake, it had the D40A’s stainless bezel and glossier anodizing. I would also have preferred green/red perimeter LEDs and different strobe options—for potential use as a safety device as opposed to police impersonation.

Bergtjie
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Thanks for the review, mine just arrived emitter perfectly centered so happy there.
I really enjoy the police strobe, this will make a nice emergency light, and it compliments my D40 nicely.
The diffuser will be great for camping and a useful lantern if the power goes off.

ChibiM
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What do you think about the matte finish? Do you like it?

wolf359
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Thanks for the great review ChibiM, to be honest the red/blue leds put me off this light as i have no use for them. Unless you want to play cops and robbers, in which case getting arrested for the flashing lights will prove costly, but no doubt some dickhead will do it.

Would snap afew up in an instant if they where just single led like the D40A. I do like the form factor and it’s looks would love to see the switch on the D40A or and upgrade kit.

zelee
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if this light isn’t have that police strobe it is instant buy from me Sad

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ChibiM
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I guess you can replace it with another (bigger) reflector, and take out the reds and blues.

Bergtjie
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ChibiM wrote:

What do you think about the matte finish? Do you like it?

I like everything about the light, the finish is better than my neutral D40, and similar to my Cool D40.

ChibiM
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That's quite interesting..do you mean you have 2 d40s with different quality finish?

blueb8llz
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if it uses 18650’s or other lion cells it would be an instant buy for me haha.
AA’s can be quite pricey.
are the enelopes AA just as bright?

ChibiM
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I haven't tested it with other batteries.. I don't have regular alkaline to test it with. Sorry. I only use eneloop AA batteries with both the D40A and F40A.

Ceiling bounce gave me the exact same numbers for the D40A and F40A.

wolf359
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blueb8llz wrote:
if it uses 18650’s or other lion cells it would be an instant buy for me haha. AA’s can be quite pricey. are the enelopes AA just as bright?

Yes eneloops are just as bright as Alkaline batteries but last longer.
Eneloops are just as bright as Lithium Primary batteries and offer similar runtimes and are reusable

I would not use Alkaline batteries with this light, i used duracell procells in my D40a and they lasted half the time of the rechargable eneloops.

While primary Alkaline cells start at a higher voltage 1,5v this drops [droops] quickly as this happens more mAh are drawn from the cells draining the battery quickly and also heating it up which can cause leakage in cheaper cells.

Alkaline batteries for low-draw devices like your wall clocks, radios, smoke detectors, programmable thermostats fine great fantastic medium to high draw they such goat balls.

Also do not forget these are Low Self Discharge, you charge them and they will retain most of there power for extended periods, go google plenty of more knowledgeable people than I have tested and written about them.

Good AA will cost you money just like 18650 Panasonics vs xxxxfires for example, you make your choice and pay for it just like marriage.

Eneloop Pro 2500 mAh rechargable 500 times
Panasonic 3400 mAh rechargable 500 times

Eneloop 2000 mAh rechargable 1500 times, if you can live with having 20% less runtime these offer the greatest value.

edit

http://www.stefanv.com/electronics/using_nimh.html

Bergtjie
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ChibiM wrote:

That’s quite interesting..do you mean you have 2 d40s with different quality finish?

Yes, the newer neutral is rougher ie more matte
It grips better, but it’s very very close in finish to the F40

wolf359
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Bergtjie wrote:
ChibiM wrote:

That’s quite interesting..do you mean you have 2 d40s with different quality finish?

Yes, the newer neutral is rougher ie more matte

bugger mine the same finish on neutral and warm tint lights