Sofirn SF14 V2.0 - Quick Review and Images

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gchart
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Sofirn SF14 V2.0 - Quick Review and Images

I bought a pair of the SF14’s from Sofirn’s Aliexpress store over the winter. I really like them, and when they released a V2.0, of course I had to buy one of those, too!

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Things I like about the SF14 (as well as the V2.0):

  • Good build quality
  • Three well-spaced modes in order of L – M – H
  • No mode memory (I like memory on larger lights, but prefer that all my small lights come on in Low)
  • Near-neutral LED
  • Inexpensive
  • Work well with my Booster Tails (illuminated tailcaps)

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Things I prefer about the original over the V2.0:

  • Used a 14mm tailcap instead of 12mm (I haven’t found a source for clear 12mm tailcaps)
  • Able to disassemble the head & driver (the V2.0 does not have a retaining ring, nor notches for pliers, and appears to have a weak glue)
  • Light orange peel reflector helps smooth any (minor) tint shifting

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Things I prefer about the V2.0 over the original:

  • Shorter (in length)
  • Other than the tailcap size, the tail is more mod-friendly

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Now for the pictures!

V2.0, left vs Original, right

V2.0, bottom vs Original, top

V2.0, top vs Original, bottom

V2.0, left vs Original, right

Original, left vs V2.0, right (note: the scratches and soldering are from my modifications – the lights did not come this way!)

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AA group shots

(left to right) Klarus Mi7, ThorFire TK05, UltraTac A1, Lumintop Tool AA, Sofirn SF14 V2.0, Sofirn SF14 (original, x2)

can you tell I like my illuminated tailcaps?

skinny_tie
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Thanks for the review gchart! I was just about to ask you about the SF14 v2 and you’ve answered all my questions.

hatman
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Thanks for the update and photos.

Can you elaborate on the tint, other than the emitter being “near neutral”?

gchart
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I’d say it’s around 5500K, which seems pretty typical for Sofirn. The below shot below consists of Sofirn SF14 v2.0 (left), Convoy M1 with XP-L 3(D/B?) tint (center), and Klarus Mi7 with cold (unknown tint bin) XP-L HI (right).

hatman
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Thanks.

I have the original SF14, I wonder how the tint compares with the V2.

gchart
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My V2 seems slightly cooler, but not significantly. It might even just be reel to reel variation.

kikstyo
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The Sofirn SF14 looks great at first but disappointing after learning about the run times. I assume their SP10 v2 will be similar?

With AA batteries, the run time is very misleading according to this thread. It will only be 28 lumens most of the time.

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/60037

hatman
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Is that run time test on the original SF14 or the new V2?

gchart
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That’s gotta be the original. I haven’t tested it yet, but I did a quick test of the V2 last night and it’s a bit different.

I sampled every 5 seconds (overkill!) and ran it for 10 minutes. I think I’ll re-run it with less-frequent sampling and will let it go until the light runs out. I’ll try and post that later. But for now…

You can see that there is indeed still a step-down at 3 minutes, but it goes from (estimated) 178 lumens to 53 lumens. This lines up very closely to Sofirn’s specs of 180 lumens on High and 50 lumens on Medium. The original was spec’ed at 230lm and 33lm.

gchart
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Ok, here are runtime/lumen comparison charts on both the original and the V2.0. Note, both of these have a bleeder (300 ohms?) installed, so stock runtimes may be barely longer. Also, please keep in mind that my lumen values are estimates.

Observations:

  • Both lights shut off at around the same time: 11 hours for V2.0 and 11 1/2 hours for the original
  • Resting battery (Eneloop) voltage measured at 0.9V after the auto-shutoff on each
  • Original started at 332 lumens, but dropped to 127 by the first minute. After 3 minutes it stepped down to 37 lumens, where it remained until 10 hours when it finally fell off hard and fast
  • The V2.0 started at 182 lumens, then dropped to 52 after 3 minutes. It stayed around 52 lumens until the 6 1/2 hour mark when it dropped to 3 lumens. From there, it gradually tapered down until it shut off.

First 5 Minutes

Full Runtimes

korkfoto
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Thank you, gchart!

That’s a huge difference in runtimes. 4 hours! For somebody who needs autonomy, it’s sad.
In pitch dark, I don’t thing the 15 lumens difference is so noticeable.
I wonder why does Sofirn do this to it’s lights? First, the SP10, now the SF14.
Realiability? Cost reduction of the components?

ggf31416
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korkfoto wrote:
Thank you, gchart!

That’s a huge difference in runtimes. 4 hours! For somebody who needs autonomy, it’s sad.
In pitch dark, I don’t thing the 15 lumens difference is so noticeable.
I wonder why does Sofirn do this to it’s lights? First, the SP10, now the SF14.
Realiability? Cost reduction of the components?

37 lm x 10h = 370lm.h (SF14)
52 lm x 6.5h = 338lm.h (SF14 v2)

The total lumen.hours are not that different. There is a 10% reduction, it could be a matter of driving the driver and emitter higher or just the oversimplification of assuming that brightness is constant.

If you need your light to last over 7 hours in a single AA you may want something with more modes or ramping or just set it to low.

50 to 37lm may not make much difference, but it’s the same from 37 to 28, from 28 to 20, from 20 to 15… all the way to 0. At some point you have to set a level for each mode.

korkfoto
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I am a newbie in flashlight domain.
Maybe I am wrong, but let’s put it in another way.
Let’s substitute the light with a small fire.
Case 1: it burns with a smaller flame for 10 hours
Case 2: it burns with a slightly bigger flame for 6 hours.
The user wants the light/heat provided by the fire to last as much as it can.
So, which one would he choose?

Barry0892
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Finally SF14 old version is sold out and SF14 V2 flashlight only is available.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07HFQ3JJ7

Not Enough Great Lights

Not in ThorFire Team since June

skinny_tie
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Barry0892 wrote:
Finally SF14 old version is sold out and SF14 V2 flashlight only is available.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07HFQ3JJ7

It looks like it’s still available on AliExpress.

https://s.click.aliexpress.com/e/tKS6uUg

joechina
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Barry0892 wrote:
Finally SF14 old version is sold out and SF14 V2 flashlight only is available.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07HFQ3JJ7


Sofirn should really clean the shop on Aliexpress. There are too many versions of a light
SP10
newSP10A
SP10A v2
newSP10B
SP10B v2

SP32A
SP32A v2

It is not easy to get the right/newest light Sad

hatman
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Recommended if you are looking for a well-priced, AA-size flashlight that uses Eneloops and is small and light enough for pocket-carrying.
Want more power, at the expense of more heat and a shorter run time? Throw in a rechargeable lithium ion battery. You’ll need this to get the rated 550 lumens on high.
The Sofirn SF14 V2.0 has no memory; the operation is a simple low/medium/high using a recessed tail clicky that allows the light to easily tail stand.
NO blinky modes, thank goodness!
The tint is decent — I prefer a more neutral tint but at least it’s NOT an ugly green like so many inexpensive lights.
I first bought the original SF14, a light that flickers badly with Eneloops on high. The V2.0 version solves that problem and eliminates the flickering. The V2.0 is rated at 550 lumens on high, compared to 600 lumens for the original. I prefer the V.20 for the ability to use Eneloops on high.
I have dozens of lights and this is one of the best and simplest AA size models at the price