Review: Lumintop ED15 XM-L2 (1*AA/14500) 2nd edition

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ChibiM
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Review: Lumintop ED15 XM-L2 (1*AA/14500) 2nd edition

Lumintop ED15 (2nd edition)
the first edition doesnt work with 14500



emergency defense flashlight

Currently Lumintop has 5 lights in their ED line up.

  1. ED10  XPG   (CR123/16340)
  2. ED11  XML2 (CR123/16340)
  3. ED15  XML2 (1*AA)
  4. ED20  XML2 (1*18650)
  5. ED21  XML2 (2*CR123A)

Let`s see what Lumintop has to offer in this ED15!
This is the 2nd edition of the ED15.

Specifications:

Brand/Model Lumintop ED15
LED: XM-L2 CW
Working voltage 0.9-2.7V
Battery 1xAA/14500
Switch Tail-cap, Reverse clicky
Modes 6, 3main 3 blinkies
Mode changing half-press and twisting head
Anodizing Premium III
Tail-stand Yes, but not very stable
Mode memory Yes
Lock-Out No
Momentary-On No
Coated glass lens Yes
Reflector Smooth
Waterproof Yes

Shop Link

(provided for review)

Banggood.com

First impressions:

My first impressions were rather positive. Besides the very simple packaging, I was happy to find the including holster (although I usually never use one) and the spare O-ring, lanyard and rubber switch boot.
Just holding the light, and playing with it a bit, it felt like it would be able to be a very nice EDC light. And with the great knurling on the body, this is definitely a pleasure to hold in different situations. But the tail switch left me with a few questions. More on this later.

What`s in the package?

Lumintop provides a fairly basic package including the following:

  • ED15 flashlight
  • Holster (pic)
  • Lanyard (pic)
  • Spare O-ring
  • Spare rubber switch boot
  • Manual


 

Size, handling and close ups;

Typical dimensions for this kind of light. Nothing fancy, nothing breathtaking, fairly basic and straightforward. Classic would be a good description.
Not that it`s a bad thing! I like classic!

Length: 101mm Picture

Width: 22mm Picture

Weight:

60grams without battery
85grams with AA*1 battery (picture)

Size and weight comparisons against other 1*AA lights.

1*AA lights: Lumintop ED15 Spark SF5 Olight S15 Eagletec D25A Sunwayman V11R Fenix LD12
Length 101mm 85mm 87mm 87mm 100mm 105mm
Dia 22mm 21.5mm 19.5mm 18mm 23mm 21.5
Dia head 22mm 24mm 23mm 18mm 23mm 21.5

Weight

grams

60 52 46 24 60

54

Knurling

The ED15 has lots of knurling, on the head as well as the body. This results in a very easy operation by twisting the head to enter the Main-modes and Blinky modes.
It has very very smooth threads.. which reminds me of the Olight i6 with its very smooth threading. Love that one.
At the same time, this is a good occasion to warn people about the blinky modes, which can be entered by unscrewing the head (slightly).. And because the threads are so super smooth, it doesn`t take much force to accidentally enter the blinky modes. So Beware!

Sharp or smooth?

The ED15 doesn`t have any sharp edges. So you woulnt have to worry to much carrying this in your pocket.


Anodizing seems to be done very well and clean. No blemishes found yet. I don`t know how strong it really is, and I`m not planning on testing that either.

The prints on the light are very clear and even. No complaints there.
click on pics for bigger size.

Clip: Strong and Reversible

The ED15 arrived with the clip attached, as show in the earlier pictures.
Stiff and strong.
It`s not a deep carry pocket clip. About 40% of the light would stick out the pocket with the clip attached backwards (pointing towards the tail).
The good thing is, its reversible.. is that a good thing?

I does however work perfectly clipped on a baseball cap. like this;

which is great for keeping you hands-free!

The lens is 17/18mm dia, and is coated.

Using a smooth reflector probably helps a little bit in the throw department, but it`s still not very affective after all. More on this later.

The ED15 can definitely Tail-Stand, but its not very stable, because of the cut outs in the back part of the body.

 

Threads (picture) came lubed, and are a pleasure to use. It feels as smooth as butter! behind the Threads,there is an O-ring, that will keep the water out.

It sports a XM-L2 led, that was well centered on my sample.

The tail can be opened with a tweezer supposedly, but I used a Watch Opener tool, like this:
Works great.

 

UI interface;

Very simple and straight forward.. This is a big plus! The switch is a Reverse Clicky, so the ED15 will not work as a Momentary On.
The clicky feels very responsive. But you really need to push the button with the tip of your thumb, as its really difficult to push it with the lower part of your thumb.


So you need to do a Full click and release to turn the light one.

And half clicks to change modes.

Main modes: on AA*1

  1. Low       (output 1.7% current draw 1.25%)
  2. Medium  (output 18.6% current draw 16.8%)
  3. High       (output 100% current draw 100%) with built in timer, after 3:30 min. it will drop to 40% output)
                        
    (using a 14500, the output drops from 100% to 53%)

 

Blinky modes:

  1. Strobe
  2. Flash
  3. Slow Flash (beacon?)

Hmm... this light doesn`t have an SOS mode.. Almost strange. Most lights with any kind of blinky modes, usually have some sort of SOS mode. But the ED15 just doesn`t.

I usually don`t use any blinky modes myself. but I thought the way they implemented the blinky modes on this light, is definitely much nicer than some budget lights at which you have to cycle through all blinky modes to enter the main modes, or even just turning the light off.
You just have to twist the head a few % ccounter clockwise to enter the blinky modes.

changing modes, works the same as in the main-group-modes, with a half press, to cycle throught the 3 blinky modes.

Mode memory

According to the manual, this light doesn`t have any memory mode.
But according to my testing, the light HAS memory mode.

It has a 4 seconds Off-Time mode memory. I have tested it many times, to understand how this memory works, But it`s not an On-Time memory, but an Off Time memory.This means that if the the light is turned off for more than 4 seconds, the last used mode (main or blinky) will be memorized.

If you turn the light on again before those 4 seconds, it will cycle through to the next mode.

PWM

Is there the dreaded PWM in this light? YES,but Fast PWM.. nothing to worry about.
It`s noticeable, in Low and Medium, but only if you wave the light in front of your eyes.
There is none PWM detectable in High mode.

in Low: (Mouse Over for close up)
Shutter speed of 1 second.. so you can count the Hz if you want, its pretty High.


Compared to the ITP A3 upgraded Titanium, High PWM
Mouse over for close up.. Left line is ED15, right line is Olight A3
I moved it quickly up and down,so you will see a few lines of each.

Performance;
The ED15 has 2 versions, both look identical though. The way you can distinguish the difference, is looking at the contact plate of the driver; the older version is this (pic from selfbuilt) and mine is This one..

Current draw AA*1:

  1. Low      0.02A
  2. Medium 0.27A
  3. High      1.60A

Current draw 14500*2:

  1. Low      0.02A
  2. Medium 0.27A
  3. High      1.87A

Run-time on AA*1

Measured the run-time twice.
First time with a standard AA eneloop 3rd gen. (which wasn`t full probably)
Second time with a standard AA eneloop 2nd gen.
The last test came out quite a bit better, as the battery came off the charger about 1 hour before testing.

 

Run-Time is a rough 110minutes.. After 110 minutes it dropped quickly, until it was at 0% ceiling bounce output within 5 minutes.
STEP DOWN
As you can see, it has a Step Down after 3 minutes and 30 seconds.
you can enter the Higher output mode again, if you change modes, back to High again.
The specs say, that it has a Run-time of 1.3hours in High mode.. its a little deceiving. Yes, its true, but not at the claimed 220lumens.
(the step down is a safety feature especially for using 14500 li-ion cells.

I would say it to be roughly 100 lumens for about 110 minutes on AA.
My preference would be to have no Step Down for AA cells, but only for 14500.

Throw

At a 5 meter distance, I measured a throw of 1000cd.... Wink
Which is basically the same as the Sunwayman V11R XM-L2 NW, which I tested it against at the same time.
So, the smooth reflector doesn`t really help for throw.

Ceiling bounce (not comparable with lux numbers measured by other members, because of the different test-setup)

AA:
High has a ceiling bounce of 21lux , which is equal to the Sunwayman V11R XM-L2 NW @ 21lux.

14500:
High has a ceiling bounce of 83lux, which is more than the Sunwayman V11R XM-L2 NW @ 66 lux.

Comparisons

Beam shots

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

AA
Mouse Out, Left; Sunwayman V11R (NW), Mouse Over Right: ED15 (CW)

14500
Mouse Out, Left; Sunwayman V11R (NW), Mouse Over Right: ED15 (CW)

 

Low lumens test:
Mouse over for Low Lumen comparison


ITP A3, Lumintop ED15, Sunwayman V11R, Fenix LD12

 

Here a group shot for size comparision.



same order as picture above.

 

Conclusion:

Will it replace my Sunwayman V11R? No, but it`s probably gonna replace my SWM M10A xml in my business bag.

My first impressions were positive. Then while doing the review, my feelings were a little mixed.. Now when I know it can also use 14500 and the 3:30 is a good safety feature, I start liking the light more..
Would I recommend this light? YES

PROS:

  1. Great grip, excellent knurling
  2. Excellent build quality
  3. Threads are smooth
  4. Works on AA and 14500
  5. 14500 gives a nice boost in output
  6. Run-time is quite long for high mode on AA (see also cons)
  7. Blinky modes are hidden, but easy accessible
  8. Has a step down, to not overheat the light with 14500 (see also cons)
  9. Comes with holster, extra o-ring and spare rubber boot

CONS:

  1. Step down at 3:30minutes even with AA (thats a pro for 14500, a con for aa)
  2. According to manual the runtime of 1.3hours @ 220lumens is unrealistic, because of he step down.
  3. The light is glued, so I couldnt open it up, therefore not so much modding possibilities
  4. Not much throw
  5. Price could be a tad bit lower for what you get.

 

 

If I miss something, please feel free to ask or comment

 

*1 Measured with Std. Eneloop AA

*2 Measured with Trustfire Flame 14500

Edited by: ChibiM on 01/30/2018 - 09:17
ChibiM
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The ED15 has 2 versions, both look identical though. The way you can distinguish the difference, is looking at the contact plate of the driver; the older version is this (pic from selfbuilt) and 2nd version is This one..(mine)

wolf359
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Looks nice the lack of a forward clicky is annoying as i use momentary alot at work and on the cat at home >). Runtimes seem reasonable but that big drop on high seems strange unless it is a stepdown to save overheating, but that is normally mentioned as a positive point.

ChibiM
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Hi, yes, that is a stepdown (timer based).

I can understand the stepdown if the light would work with 14500 batteries. But with AA batteries, that is unnecessary.

I`ve emailed Lumintop whether I can use 14500 batteries,  and had to send a picture of the contact board, which I did. Now waiting for clarification.

I assume this is the second edition. The 1st edition didnt seem to have mode memory. While this one has.

they said that the first generation won`t work with 14500, but the second one does.. Im almost sure mine is the 2nd edition, but don`t want to use a 14500 before they answer.

edit: I just received an answer. And it sounds like a YES.

so I will try it with a 14500 as well, and see how the light behaves..

 

2nd edit: Review is done as of July 15

MRsDNF
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Location: A light beam away from the missus in the land of Aus.

Thanks for the very comprehensive review ChibiM.

 

djozz quotes, "it came with chinese lettering that is chinese to me".

                      "My man mousehole needs one too"

old4570 said "I'm not an expert , so don't suffer from any such technical restrictions".

Old-Lumens. Highly admired and cherished member of Budget Light Forum. 11.5.2011 - 20.12.16. RIP.

 

MRsDNF
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Last seen: 1 hour 53 min ago
Joined: 12/22/2011 - 21:18
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Location: A light beam away from the missus in the land of Aus.

Thanks for the very comprehensive review ChibiM.

 

djozz quotes, "it came with chinese lettering that is chinese to me".

                      "My man mousehole needs one too"

old4570 said "I'm not an expert , so don't suffer from any such technical restrictions".

Old-Lumens. Highly admired and cherished member of Budget Light Forum. 11.5.2011 - 20.12.16. RIP.

 

Boro
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Thank you for the review. These sized lights work very well on caps for walking, working, etc. Nice pic for that.