Review Niwalker Vostro BK-FA02S

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daninho
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Review Niwalker Vostro BK-FA02S

theoutdoorsplus send me a Niwalker Vostro for review amongst other lights. The outdoorsplus is a new chinese online shop for premium brands such as Niwalker, Armytek, Acebeam, Olight and Nitecore. They also offer two own models with the outdoorsplus label. Some of you already know them because of the BLF give away. There will be coupon codes but its not clear how low they can go because of obvious reasons.

 

Since i dont have experience with large multi cells lights i had to order a Canvoy L6 just for comparision, ok i would have ordered it sooner or later anyway but that was a good reason sealed. Its a very good light for the money. I also had to change the image hoster because i didnt expected the traffic my reviews produced, i just started to review flashlights because a manufacturer send me a PM a while ago asking for a review and i was excited and agreed, ordered a new camera lens and other stuff just because of that but in the end after a couple of mails they never send me anything. Now i had a new lens and a new tripod etc.. without much use, so i asked gearbest for a review and they send me an eagle eye X2R.

 

Now lets starts with the review and i will add some other reviews next week, it took me a while and the weather here is not ideal for beamshots, so i had to wait for a non rainy and fog free night.

 

 

dimensions:

length: 208.55mm

body diameter: 52mm

head diameter: 88m

weight: 540g

 

 

 

 

 

 

The light comes in a bare cardboard box similar to zebralight and some other manufacturers which is kind of environmentally friendly and most people dont care much about a costly packaging i guess. 

 

 

Within the package you can finde some spare o-rings, a lanyard (olive), the manual (good english) and a holster. 

 

 

The holster is like a revolver holster, you just slide the light in, you can not close or secure it with a flap. It looks nice with red stitchings and a rubber niwalker logo.  

 

 

The BK-FA02S is a large flashlight for 4x 18650 cells. The shape/design is not new anymore, the Niwalker BK-FA01 is already several years old and there is also the BK-FA02. They all have a similar design but are not identical, for example the BK-FA02S has a larger head and less cooling fins compared to the BK-FA02.

 

 

You can find another difference to the earlier models at the back, the BK-FA02S has a tailcap clicky now unlike the BK-FA02 (MT-G2) which is in my mind a really important feature because you can preselect the brightness levels and there is no parasitic drain. The light is more or less like a larger version of the Acebeam K40M.

 

Now i will show you some close ups, the machining is done really well as i expected from Niwalker. The surface feels super smooth.I think Niwalker changed the anodizing, they used a super matte finish in the past, now its a bit more glossy. 

 

The color of the light is black, on some pictures like the ones above it look to brownish and warm under the studio lights but its not. The laser engravings are done well.

 

A view inside the batterie tube with some fancy chinese signs on the rubber switch cover : )

 

 

The BK-FA02S uses a battery carrier, i usually prefer lights without battery carriers because it is just more convenient for me but i guess thats a matter of taste and the advantage of battery carriers is you can change all four cells pretty fast if you have a preloaded spare carrier ready.

 

I use the light with keeppower 3400 cells because those are the only four identical cells i own, i have tons of 18650 cells from different manufacturers but sadly not four identical ones. I checked them all and they all fit except the Klarus 3600mah cell. With some cells you need to fiddle a bit and use your finger nails, shorter cells are easier to remove and load into the carrier. The green eagtac 3400mah cell is the shortest protected 18650 i know of and its no surprise that it worked pretty good with the Niwalker battery carrier. You can insert the carrier either way into the tube.

 

The light uses a Cree XHP70 emitter with a maximum output of 4800 lumens according to the factory claimed specs. 5 lumens on ultra low which they call L1 (300h), 230 lumens on low (L2 - 60h), 800 lumens on medium (L3 - 10h), 1900 lumens on high (L4 - 250 minutes) and 4800 lumens on turbo (L5 - 80 min.). 600m throw and 90K Lux. The light has the IPX8 rating. There is a heavy orange peel reflector which helps also against the donut hole. The light has also a large copper heat sink pad.I think the light offers a good combination of flood and throw, a more universal light similar to the K40M or Convoy L6.

 

 

One huge benefit and feature of the light is the magnetic ring for selecting the modes. There is a metallic click sound each time the ring snaps in place on a new brightness setting. You can twist the ring clockwise for selecting the different modes from the standby position to high. There is also a hidden strobe mode, i am not a fan of strobe modes and i think its a good thing that the strobe mode is not directly accesible. You can activate strobe by twisting the ring quickly from standby to the highest mode and back to standby.

 

You dont see a large "beater" flashlight like this with a nice ultra low mode with 5 lumens that often. Nice for reading in the dark or in the car.

 

Since this is currently my only "four cell-flashlight" in the 18650 format i dont have much lights in that size to compare it to but well known lights like the Nitecore MH20 or the Nitecore EC4 should do the trick as well.

 

After i made all the photos for the review the Convoy L6 arrived just in time for that review and i had to make another comparison picture.

 

The Niwalker BK-FA02S has coated glas like most of the premium lights.

 

 

Here is a little tint comparison with other lights.

 

I made a little runtime test with my keeppower 3400mah i bought for this light on turbo (fan-cooled). The manual says low voltage warning but there are no indicator lights and the main LED dont blink as an indicator. I assume that the aggressive step down to a super low mode is the low voltage warning, so you will definately realize it when the light is low on power.

 

 

For the first time i made a ceiling bounce test because my little sphere is to small for such large lumen monsters. Ceiling bounce measurements are always a roughly estimation. I have some lab tested reference lights and E14 LED spots here but in the end its always an estimation and not accurate. The light reached the 4310 lumen mark with the keeppower 3400 protected cells, it is possible that the light is brighter with other cells.

 

 

Some indoor beamshots on a white wall

 

As a GIF

 

 

Finally i made some outdoor shots in a local forest at night. I made two seperate pictures from every beam, one zoomed out and one with a bit of optical zoom.

I also took the Astrolux S2 with a LG HG2 cell with me because i was curious what a little light can do against the big boys. 

 

 

As a GIF

 

 

with optical zoom

 

 

As a GIF

 

 

 

It was fun to review such a large light, the BK-FA02S is a premium light and really well made. Niwalker used to OEM manufacture for other premium brands. I like lights with a magnet ring because that is the most convenient way to operate a flashlight. I have some EDC lights with a magnet ring and that is something even older people can use without any problems. The nice thing about it is that you can preselect your desired brightness, it is like instant access to all modes. It is also nice that the strobe mode is hidden and it is hidden in a way that you can easily access it even in a panic situation. What are the cons of this light? Hard to say, i couldnt detect any visible PWM with the slowmotion function of my smartphone, the light has a nice ultra low mode and a tailcap clicky for instant access. The anodizing is really good and it can tailstand. I guess one con for me is the battery carrier, some like it and others not. The light isnt flat regulated on turbo, that could be a con for some people as well.

 

 

 

Edited by: daninho on 11/06/2016 - 21:11
Wrathbringer27
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OMG NICE PICS!! Thank you for the review! :))))

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so can bones.

gregor
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Very nice review, thank you.

The Miller
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nice review
And very, VERY nice pics!
That is some dedication ordering a L6 for comparison Wink

hIKARInoob
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The Miller wrote:
nice review And very, VERY nice pics! That is some dedication ordering a L6 for comparison Wink

…Or… the subconscious mind found a way to justify another flashlight purchase… Smile

daninho
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Thank you wrathbringer, Gregor and the Miller, i really appreciate it. It was a little bit of both actually. The L6 is a “must have” like the BLF Q8 project. The truth is the group buys prevented the L6 purchase all the time and the hope that it would be released in a sand / desert tan color. For the Niwalker review i needed a >3000 lumens light badly and since i had the L6 on my purchase list i had to order it with express shipping and the truncheon arrived just in time Big Smile

Box
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Thanks for the great review. The pics are beautiful! Always loved the beefy tough design of the Niwalker Vostro range.

casi29061965
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Wow, great Review with awesome pictures !!
Thanks a lot !
Greets
Carsten

Mstevens113
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The beam shots compared with the L6 look very similar other than the tint.

Is there much difference in real life?

daninho
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Yes, both have large heads with the same emitter and orange peel reflector. The Niwalker BK-FA02S is brighter and has a tighter beam. I never did a ceiling bounce test with the L6 because it arrived to late. 800 lumens between those lights is not that much to say wow that one is much brighter. The niwalker looks definately more massive, more like tank. Fat cooling fins, a fat head, more battery capacity, the magnet ring etc.. so it has other benefits as well. For the price of course the L6 is probabaly the best value for the money at the moment. There is another thing, you can use the Niwalker with two or three cells if you like, i didnt mentioned that in the review because i hadnt checked that at that moment but it works.

atbglenn
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Great review. The Convoy L6 5K version you tested looks the best to my eyes. Glad I own one Smile

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