Review with X-ray Image: Haikelite HT08 Mini

21 posts / 0 new
Last post
stephenk
stephenk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 hours 8 min ago
Joined: 01/30/2016 - 05:09
Posts: 1166
Location: Australia
Review with X-ray Image: Haikelite HT08 Mini

Disclaimer

The Haikelite HT08 Mini was purchased using a gift voucher won in a CPF giveaway run by GearBest. No other payment was received for this review, and I do not receive any commission from links or sales from this review.
Product page: https://www.gearbest.com/led-flashlights/pp_900413.html
Code for 12% off: GB17LED

Introduction

The compact zoomy light market (with a few exceptions) is divided between cheap and nasty $2 aspheric lens lights (sometimes sold for much more, with ludicrous lumens ratings), and the optically good but somewhat overpriced TIR lens lights from Ledlenser, Coast, and Walther Pro. The Haikelite HT08 fills in a gap in this market, with an 18650 based zoom light, using a genuine 5000k neutral white Cree XP-L emitter, and unusually, with a Fresnel lens. A Fresnel lens reduces the amount of material required compared to a conventional lens by dividing the lens into a set of concentric annular sections. Whilst Fresnel lenses are rare on flashlights, they are commonly found in lighthouses and theatre lighting. Lets see how the Haikelite HT08 performs?

Packaging

The Haikelite HT08 arrived in a padded cardboard box, which contained the HT08, spare O-rings, and a high quality lanyard. There were no instructions included.

Construction

The Haikelite HT08 is a compact 18650 zoom light, with a similar size to the non-zooming Convoy C8. As with other Haikelites, the construction is quite solid. The HT08 has a large(ish) zoom head with a diameter of 45.5mm. There are lots of fins on head to dissipate heat, however as the LED is on the body, there is only a short section of screw thread allowing for contact between the body and the head for heat transfer. Thus the body warms up fairly quickly, and the light was uncomfortable to hold on high after 10 minutes.

The zoom mechanism works by screwing/twisting the head. The mechanism was quite smooth. There is quite a lot of travel to move between flood and throw, and thus it is not possible to quickly move between one or the other like on Ledlensers (8secs vs <1sec). However, at least the head stays fixed at the zoom position at which is was last left, which can be very useful.

There is a single tail switch – user interface is explained in the next section. The tail cap can be unscrewed for battery insertion. There are springs at both ends of the battery tube, and thus the HT08 accepts button top and flat top 18650 batteries. Looking at the X-ray image, there appears to be sufficient length for longer protected 18650s. The battery tube thread is not anodised and thus the light cannot be mechanically locked out by turning the tail cap.

User Interface

The Haikelite HT08 has a tail switch which works with half and full clicks (as per the Convoy S2+). There are 5 mode groups, which are as follows:
Group 1: Single mode
Group 2:  Low  / High
Group 3: Low / Medium / High
Group 4:  High / Strobe / SOS
Group 5:  Moonlight / Low / Medium /High / SOS
5 half-clicks are required to enter programming mode. The mode is then selected by clicking the light off after the number of flashes denoting the mode group.
8 half-clicks are required to toggle memory on/off.

There is no momentary functionality, which would be useful in light like this.

Beam, Output, and Runtime

As previously mentioned, this light is fairly unique in that it uses a Fresnel lens, instead of aspheric lens (as found in most budget zoom lights) or TIR lenses (as found in more expensive zoom lights such as Ledlenser, Coast, and Walther Pro). In fact, there are two lenses in the HT08, an AR coated “C8 like” lens, and the Fresnel lens below.

At the flood end, the beam is fairly even in brightness, with a very wide angle. In fact this is by far the widest angle I’ve seen on a zoomy light. There is a little bit of yellow tint shift at the corona which is usual for zoom lights. The corona is not as noticeable as on the XP-G3 based zoom lights.

At the throw end, there is a very small hotspot, but also lots of ring artefact from the Fresnel lens. This artefact is barely noticeable when in real world (outdoor) conditions. The small hotspot may be useful for refractography. The LED is projected slightly out of focus. This, and the choice of LED means that is no funky colour mottle effect like on an XP-G3 based zoom light I recently reviewed.

In between the two, the beam is always fairly even, and the ring artefact varies at different parts if the zoom.

The 5000k tint is pretty much perfect, white with a tiny hint of yellow. The corona is yellow. There is no hint of green, purple, or blue. A neutral white zoom light is a rarity, and Haikelite have done well with the tint. This is miles better than the awful purple tint on my Ledlenser P7.2.

The CRI appears to be in the usual low 70s, which is good enough for most purposes.

The claimed output on high is 850 lumens at wide angle. I was only able to record 675 lumens. At throw, I measured 175 lumens (as light is lost within the light due to the large distance between the emitter and lens), and estimated 17,500cd. Thus despite a small hotspot, the throw is far less than a dedicated, similar sized thrower such as the Convoy C8. Moonlight/Low/Mid/High modes were recorded at 1/26/66/100% respectively.

No automatic step down was observed during 10 minutes of runtime on high, at which point I decided the light was getting too uncomfortable to hold, and manually stepped down. I personally prefer user controlled step-downs, but this does mean that the user needs common sense and should not leave the light on high unattended. Run-time tests are a work in progress.

PWM could not be detected in any modes via iPhone video (which usually picks up PWM), so there is either no PWM or it is very fast.

In below beam shots where there are two lights, the Haikelite HT08 is on the left, and Ledlenser P7.2 on the right.

Conclusion

Things I liked:
Zoom stays in position
5000k neutral white tint
Choice of mode groups and memory on/off
Impressively wide and even flood beam
No measured step-down on high – requires common sense!
No noticeable PWM
Relatively low price

Things I didn’t like:
Cannot quickly change from flood to throw – requires a lot of screwing with 2 hands!
Head too large for common light painting connectors
Ring artefacts at zoom/throw and some intermediate positions
No momentary functionality
No mechanical lockout
Output less than claimed.
Poor throw compared to C8 lights
No instructions in packaging

The Haikelite HT08 Mini is quite possibly the best zoom light in it’s price range US$15-$30. It has the largest zoom range of any zoom light I’ve seen. The neutral white tint is excellent, I like the fact that it stays in zoom position, and has a choice of mode options. However, this light is far from perfect. The output is less than claimed (though still not bad), and cannot compete with C8 lights for throw. It takes around 8 seconds to move from flood to throw, and there is no momentary functionality or mechanical lockout. Thus this light may suit some users of zoom lights, but not others.

Note: I’ll add more info and photos with time, but due to the interest in this light I wanted to get a review out quickly. Let me know if you want any more info.

Edited by: stephenk on 10/26/2017 - 05:00
Jerommel
Jerommel's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 55 min ago
Joined: 01/04/2014 - 13:18
Posts: 4446
Location: the Hague, Netherlands

The poor output is because when in focus only 30% 50% of the lens receives light.
This is because the head is narrow inside from top to bottom. FacepalmFacepalmFacepalm
The rings are reflections of the lubed threads (not fresnel artefacts).

..waiting for parts..

Still looking for 5” parabolic reflector (for recoil light)

L4M4
L4M4's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 hour 50 min ago
Joined: 12/08/2013 - 13:43
Posts: 1120
Location: Germany

Thanks mate!
Because of your photos I am actually glad I didn’t buy this thing

stephenk
stephenk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 hours 8 min ago
Joined: 01/30/2016 - 05:09
Posts: 1166
Location: Australia

Jerommel wrote:

The rings are reflections of the lubed threads (not fresnel artefacts).

I’ll take your word for it, though I’ve seen similar artifacts from a light house fresnel lens. I do find the rings are barely noticeable in real world use. Still, I prefer TIR optics on zoom lights, as per Ledlenser, Coast, and Walther Pro, just a shame that these lights are overpriced and generally have poor UI and fast step-downs.
Jerommel
Jerommel's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 55 min ago
Joined: 01/04/2014 - 13:18
Posts: 4446
Location: the Hague, Netherlands

Yeah, the idea of the LED lenser optic is cool, definitely.
But i’m quite sure a Brinyte B158(B) will out throw a similar diameter LED lenser.

I just held the HT08 lens in front of a bare LED: No rings.
I think you can see in your picture the rings are actually spiralling towards the centre, like the groove in a record (you know, those ancient black discs with sound waves cut in the surface Big Smile )

..waiting for parts..

Still looking for 5” parabolic reflector (for recoil light)

stephenk
stephenk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 hours 8 min ago
Joined: 01/30/2016 - 05:09
Posts: 1166
Location: Australia

Jerommel wrote:
Yeah, the idea of the LED lenser optic is cool, definitely.
But i’m quite sure a Brinyte B158(B) will out throw a similar diameter LED lenser.

I just held the HT08 lens in front of a bare LED: No rings.
I think you can see in your picture the rings are actually spiralling towards the centre, like the groove in a record (you know, those ancient black discs with sound waves cut in the surface Big Smile )


Yeh, I just had a look back at the pattern and noticed the spiral. After checking back at a photo of a lighthouse fresnel (I’m not a lighthouse spotter), the ring artefact was being ejected out of the perpendicular axis to the main beam.

I think the ledlenser TIR is patented (or at least pending), though it is interesting that Coast and Walther Pro also use very similar TIR lenses on zoomies (their products are all very similar).

Jerommel
Jerommel's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 55 min ago
Joined: 01/04/2014 - 13:18
Posts: 4446
Location: the Hague, Netherlands

There are / were some other cheaper brands too, that use a similar lens.
I have one, but they didn’t implement it right.
I only have the ugly zone between zoomed out and zoomed in… Facepalm

You can buy a bulk of 400 pcs 40mm of those lenses on AliExpress by the way.

..waiting for parts..

Still looking for 5” parabolic reflector (for recoil light)

The Miller
The Miller's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 weeks 2 days ago
Joined: 12/14/2015 - 12:08
Posts: 9947
Location: Charente France

I think the flood looks very good
And the price seems nice

leroycp
Online
Last seen: 2 min 23 sec ago
Joined: 12/27/2015 - 19:24
Posts: 591
Location: Stewart TN
The Miller wrote:
I think the flood looks very good And the price seems nice

Agree. It is a decent budget light. Tint and flood are very good. Great for gift.

Firelight2
Firelight2's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 hour 50 min ago
Joined: 04/08/2011 - 15:17
Posts: 2385
Location: California

The rings visible in the spot beam probably aren’t caused by the fresnel lens. Most likely they’re reflections off the screw threads on the inside of the bezel.

I have a hobby light I modded a few years ago that used similar construction: fresnel lens with a glass lens on top. Its beam has no rings at all.

I also have a small AAA-sized aspheric lens zoomie that uses a threaded bezel. When unscrewed into spot position reflections off the screw threads inside the bezel produce horrendous rings similar to the pictures above for the HT08.

Jerommel
Jerommel's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 55 min ago
Joined: 01/04/2014 - 13:18
Posts: 4446
Location: the Hague, Netherlands
leroycp wrote:
The Miller wrote:
I think the flood looks very good And the price seems nice

Agree. It is a decent budget light.

No, unfortunately it is not decent.

..waiting for parts..

Still looking for 5” parabolic reflector (for recoil light)

james y
Offline
Last seen: 2 days 16 hours ago
Joined: 06/15/2016 - 23:09
Posts: 105
Location: Malaysia
Jerommel wrote:
leroycp wrote:
The Miller wrote:
I think the flood looks very good And the price seems nice

Agree. It is a decent budget light.

No, unfortunately it is not decent.

I completely agree. Somehow I bought 2; 1 from Gearbest and 1 from Banggood and I must says they are my most disappointed zoomies. Super light and cheaply built.
I also have their HT35 which shows great promises but arrives with glass broken at the edge, bad focusing and not bright enough, ie, insufficient throw.
tkd15
Offline
Last seen: 4 days 19 hours ago
Joined: 08/06/2015 - 23:54
Posts: 32

Thank the OP for the review and the others for informative comments. Still looking forward to getting mine.

stephenk
stephenk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 hours 8 min ago
Joined: 01/30/2016 - 05:09
Posts: 1166
Location: Australia

Despite its issues is still outperforms the x4 to x6 more expensive ledlenser P7.2 in all regards apart from the speed of moving from flood to throw. I’ll be keeping mine for refractography.

BobbyMK
BobbyMK's picture
Online
Last seen: 14 min 45 sec ago
Joined: 09/10/2015 - 05:50
Posts: 292
Location: Macedonia

Has anyone ever managed to change mode groups on the light? I somehow managed to stuck it in the “Single mode” group. No matter what i did it would not want to change mode groups.

Anyways i did not liked the driver because it was running the led at only 2.4A, so i swapped it with BLF Bistro driver and dedomed the stock led.

Stock throw: 18000cd
Fet + stock led: 31000cd
Fet + dedome: 45500cd

Oh, another thing, this is how the light looks in full focus, big part of the lens is not even used. Design fail.

 Olight i3s, Olight S1, Olight S Mini, JetBeam Jet-1, BLF 348, Astrolux S41S, UF SK-98, Convoy S2+ 3*XP-G2, Convoy S2+ 3*XPL, Convoy S2+ 219CT, Convoy M1, Convoy C8, Brinyte B158, Courui D01, Convoy L6, Noctigon M43

Jerommel
Jerommel's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 55 min ago
Joined: 01/04/2014 - 13:18
Posts: 4446
Location: the Hague, Netherlands

BobbyMK wrote:

Oh, another thing, this is how the light looks in full focus, big part of the lens is not even used. Design fail.

Thanks for the picture.
I calculated from measuring your picture that 50% of the lens receives light when focussed.
Of course the lens is a little larger than the hole in the bezel, so i estimated it was 30%, but that was still a too low estimate.
None the less, it’s a design fail.

..waiting for parts..

Still looking for 5” parabolic reflector (for recoil light)

Jerommel
Jerommel's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 55 min ago
Joined: 01/04/2014 - 13:18
Posts: 4446
Location: the Hague, Netherlands

Fixed the light path:

SST-40 in there which will be dedomed soon.
Good grief that’s a cold white as cold as Syberia.. Sick

The driver has a R200 resistor between the + of the battery and the + of the LED.
It is a CC driver though, but i can’t see how the R200 resistor functions as a ‘sense resistor’, but i’ll bake a R300 (which i should have somewhere) over it.
I measured 2.7 Amperes by the way, my goal is 4.5 Amperes.

Anyway, the light hits all of the lens now.

..waiting for parts..

Still looking for 5” parabolic reflector (for recoil light)

Jerommel
Jerommel's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 55 min ago
Joined: 01/04/2014 - 13:18
Posts: 4446
Location: the Hague, Netherlands

The tail threads are quite bad on mine..
A lot of play and often nearly screws on crooked (skew).

..waiting for parts..

Still looking for 5” parabolic reflector (for recoil light)

stephenk
stephenk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 hours 8 min ago
Joined: 01/30/2016 - 05:09
Posts: 1166
Location: Australia

Jerommel wrote:
The tail threads are quite bad on mine..
A lot of play and often nearly screws on crooked (skew).

My tail cap screws on straight, however, the threads unscrew more easily than the zoom mechanism, thus it is easy to accidentely unscrew the tail cap when zooming.
Jerommel
Jerommel's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 hours 55 min ago
Joined: 01/04/2014 - 13:18
Posts: 4446
Location: the Hague, Netherlands

Mine screws on straight too, but you have to pay some attention and ‘follow’ the threads, otherwise it may go wrong, or almost wrong.. (hope that makes sense)
Feels like when you would tighten it really hard, the threads may eventually strip themselves..

Such a shame, because this could have been quite a nice light.

..waiting for parts..

Still looking for 5” parabolic reflector (for recoil light)

Phlogiston
Offline
Last seen: 1 day 4 hours ago
Joined: 10/27/2016 - 16:57
Posts: 285
Location: Scotland

I’ve just received my HT08, and I have to say that stephenk’s review is bang on target. It matches my impressions perfectly. Well done!

Thank you for the operating instructions Thumbs Up I can’t believe there’s no instruction sheet in the box Facepalm

Having seen some other members slagging this light off while I was waiting for mine, I was worried that I was in for a disappointment. I’m happy to say that the light wasn’t that bad in the end. Basically, it’s a OK light, but it could have been better. The light loss in the zoom setting is just as painful as people said it was.

I’m impressed by the floody setting, though, that’s a really wide beam. With the neutral tint, it’ll be perfect in medium mode for lighting up a decent area in a power cut, or whilst puttering about in the attic. No need to ceiling bounce, just attach it to a curtain rail or a light fixture and light up the area beneath.

I can report that this light has plenty of space for protected cells. It works quite happily with my Fenix 3200 mAh and EagTac 3400 mAh protected cells.

I get the distinct impression that heat dissipation is significantly better in flood mode than zoom mode. It occurs to me that the tube thread would be in contact with the widest, best heatsinking part of the head when the light’s in flood mode. I wonder if that’s what makes the difference?

EDIT: I measured the beam at full zoom; it turns out to be about 11cm at 1m, which is 6 or 7 degrees wide. Flood beam is about 90 degrees wide.