[Review] Astrolux FT01 XHP50.2 (21700)

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ChibiM
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[Review] Astrolux FT01 XHP50.2 (21700)

Astrolux FT01 CREE XHP50.2 2200Lumens

 Specifications:

Brand/Model   Astrolux FT01
LED CREE XHP50.2 CW

Working voltage

~4.2V
Battery 1x21700/18650
Switch Tail-cap + side
Modes 5
Blinkies 3
Mode changing Side switch
Anodizing HAIII

Tailstand

Yes
Lock-out No
Momentary On Yes
Lens Coated
Reflector Orange Peel
Waterproof IPX7

INTRODUCTION:

Banggood's homebrand Astrolux has currently a nice lineup of extremely interesting flashlights. Besides the MF04/MF04S they sport some smaller lights like the S43, S41 to name a few. The FT01 is rather unique in this regard, as it's one of the first Astrolux flashlights that uses a 21700 battery. You know, the ones that are used in Tesla cars.

What you'll get:

  • Astrolux FT01 flashlight
  • Carton box
  • Manual
  • Spare O-ring
  • Lanyard

HANDLING OF THE LIGHT

My preference has gone out to the diameter of a 3AAA- or a 26650 flashlight, mainly because of the most ideal diameter to fit my hands. This being a 21700 type flashlight it feels nicer than a 18650. The power switch is in the tailcap, while the side switch is used for changing modes. So you can change modes while holding it in the palm of your hand, and at the same time you can power it off with the main switch, so it doesn't have parasitic drain..... fortunately.

 

BUILD QUALITY, PRINTS AND ANODIZING
Although Astrolux once started on the budget side of the spectrum, it hasn't stayed there for very long.

It is now a very well established flashlight brand. All parts fit every nicely and not wobbly. The FT01 is definitely worth the money looking at the way it is machined and put together. The prints on the flashlight are rather thin and not very clear.

Take a look at the picture below. You can see that the text isn't particularly clear. The color is supposed to be grey/silver, but when I'm holding it it looks more champagne.

THREADS AND O-RINGS
The Astrolux FT01 is built in 3 main parts; the head, body and tail. The body (battery tube) has threads on either side. The threads towards the tailcap are actually anodized, while the ones towards the head are bare. This has ofcourse a reason. If the tailcap were bare, you would have the light turned on continually.

 

LED, LENS BEZEL AND REFLECTOR
This is my first light that has the CREE XHP50.2 which looks just like it's bgger brother, the XHP70.2. My copy has the Cool White LED, and as far as I can see the FT01 it doesn't have a NW version nor a WW version!!!!

The reflector is made of aluminum I suppose, and has an Orange Peel coating. I can't get the bezel off by heands, so I can't really tell for sure. The Lens is clear but I can't really see any color hue that is usually present on AR coated lenses. So it might be just an ultraclear lens.

The bezel is stainless steel which enhances it's quite beautiful look!

DIMENSIONS:
Flashlight manufacturers mainly show dimensions in millimeters.

Length of the Astrolux FT01: 143 mm
FT01 head diameter: 37 mm
Width body : 30 mm

WEIGHT:
Weight Haikelight MT03 TA empty: 192 gr / 0.42 lb.
Size compared to the Convoy C8, Lumintop ODF30 and Convoy T2.

USER INTERFACE: UI


The Astrolux FT01 has a rather simple UI fortunately. The side switch doesn't do anything without using the tailswitch. It would simply not power on. It will also be possible to just depress the tailswitch to 'signal' or morse coding.

From on:

  • Press and Hold side switch: Strobe, then hold for SOS and then hold to Beacon
  • Single click side switch: Moving through the menu, from Low to High
  • Double click: Turbo mode
  • Triple click: Nothing

Moon mode:

When you turn on the light it will not start at Moon, but starts at low, then goes to medium, then high, and THEN it will go to Moon.

Backlight:

Behind the dark translucent switch cover is a mini LED built-in. It is only lit when you charge or when the battery is below 50%. I tried to charge a Jetbeam Hi Amp battery, but it just starts flashing, which is probably not correct behavior.

Lock-out mode:

You can do a lock out by twisting the body from the tail to break the electric contact but it is not necessary because it uses a mechanical tail cap switch.

PWM
I couldn't detect any by eyes.

MOMENTARY ON:
Yes, when you turn the light off with the tailcap switch, you can slightly depress the Forward Clicky switch to signal/use morse coding, which is called Momentary On. When you switch it off in Medium mode, that's the output mode when your turned off the light! So it has Mode Memory

 

ABOUT THE BATTERIES:
Although it is made for the 21700 type battery, or even the 20700 battery, but a protected Panasonic NCR18650B still worked fine without the little included battery extender. But I can imagine that shorter 18650 batteries wouldnt fit as well, and you need to use the added battery extender, that is included especially for 18650 batteries. It is rather tight fit and difficult to get out at times.

 

PERFORMANCE:

Lumens measured in my self-made integrated sphere, calibrated with a Convoy S2+ with a constant 137 lumens out, received from BLF (Budget Light Forums) member Djozz. This time I used the cheap HS1010A lux meter. The battery being a Panasonic NCR18650B without protection. Here are my measurements:

    Measured Lumens Manufacture Lumens
Astrolux MT01 Moon 1.46 1.29
Panasonic NCR18650B Low 280.78 200
Panasonic NCR18650B Medium 751.47 650
Panasonic NCR18650B High 1459.52 1300
Panasonic NCR18650B Turbo 2482.28 2215

I haven't done a runtime graph, but once I do, I will post it first in the original Astrolux FT01 review page on my site. 

 

Throw:

Measured indoors at 5 meters,

HS1010A luxmeter + panasonic NCR18650B : 755lux = 18750 cd 

LX-101 luxmeter + high-drain jetbeam :980lux= 24500 cd

The LX101 is right on with the manufacturer claims.. 24000cd.

I start to mistrust my cheap HS1010A meter more and more, especially now I have a high quality meter the Hagner e4-x, which also reads higher than the HS1010A. 

No beamshots yet, hopefully soon I will be going out and do some beamshots with multiple flashlights again, including the Astrolus MF04S which finally arrived after 3 months!!!! 

 

CONCLUSION
PROS:

  • Rather bright for a single cell flashlight!
  • Simple but useful UI that everybody can get used to within a minute!!!! Fortunately.
  • One of the few lights using the new 21700 battery size.

 

CONS:

  • No battery included.
  • At the time of this review, no other LED tint available, except cold white.

Note: the flashlight was provided by Banggood for review. 

Edited by: ChibiM on 11/19/2018 - 15:38
BlueSwordM
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Good review, but how are you getting full power with a NCR18650B at 5A+ of current draw?

If you do turbo once, can you come back up?

The high internal resistance of an NCR18650B can hugely limit power output of a 1500+ lumen light.

Are you sure it is not an NCR18650GA?

My very own high current Beryllium Copper springs Gen 3:
http://budgetlightforum.com/node/67401
Liitokala Aliexpress Stores Battery Fraud: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/60547

ChibiM
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Nope, it should be a NCR18650B greeny.... (its been a few weeks since I actually did the measurements, so I have to trust what I wrote is accurate :). But I remember I tested it with a few batteries, including a Samsung 25R and a no-specs Jetbeam High Drain battery..

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Quote:
Not sure what is wrong with charging… I tried it, but it’s just blinking.. which doesn’t look right to me. I’m not sure why this is, it might be a problem, or it might be that I used the wrong batteries/adapter??
You have to switch the tailswitch on. Wink

2Q19

ChibiM
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Jerommel wrote:
Quote:
Not sure what is wrong with charging... I tried it, but it's just blinking.. which doesn't look right to me. I'm not sure why this is, it might be a problem, or it might be that I used the wrong batteries/adapter??
You have to switch the tailswitch on. ;)

 

uhmmm are you kidding? whaaaahahaha.. 

Emberassing.. you are correct.. it worked .. But the manual doesn't say anything about it.... oh boy oh boy

 

Thanks Jerommel!

Jerommel
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LOL If you don’t switch the tail on, the battery has no connection to the minus pole, can’t charge.

2Q19

mrheosuper
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Jerommel wrote:
LOL
If you don’t switch the tail on, the battery has no connection to the minus pole, can’t charge.

yeah, my jetbeam also suffer from this, but my fitorch, uses same desgin, doesn’t

because there is a bleeder resistor at the tailcap, the charging current is low but it can charge, if i turn on the switch it will charge at max current

Forgot my pen

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A few members measured 2210 lumen with the Samsung 40t..

Just keep in mind, your lumen light box or whatever is 200 lumen higher.

ChibiM
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Newlumen wrote:
A few members measured 2210 lumen with the Samsung 40t.. Just keep in mind, your lumen light box or whatever is 200 lumen higher.

That could be true.. Have to double check with my other meters.

ChibiM
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I retested the light with 2 batteries and my new (second hand) lux meter. 

18650B is without protection!

Numbers are here: 

Astrolux FT01 Moon 1,57
Panasonic NCR18650B Low 269,88
Panasonic NCR18650B Medium 710,75
Panasonic NCR18650B High 1375,15
Panasonic NCR18650B Turbo 2330,55
     
Astrolux FT01 Moon 1,57
Jetbeam Hi Amp Low 270,39
Jetbeam Hi Amp Medium 713,33
Jetbeam Hi Amp High 1375,15
Jetbeam Hi Amp Turbo 2317,67
JasonWW
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How do you turn the light on and off?

Is it one click of the side switch for both?

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JasonWW wrote:
How do you turn the light on and off?

Is it one click of the side switch for both?

Tailswitch is use to turn on and turn off..

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Newlumen wrote:
JasonWW wrote:
How do you turn the light on and off?

Is it one click of the side switch for both?

Tailswitch is use to turn on and turn off..

Crying
texas shooter
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JasonWW wrote:
Newlumen wrote:
JasonWW wrote:
How do you turn the light on and off?

Is it one click of the side switch for both?

Tailswitch is use to turn on and turn off..

Crying

The UI is easy. In moonlight,low,medium and high the tail switch is on/off only keeping it set in that selected mode. If you’re in turbo, strobe, SOS or beacon the tail switch defaults it to the last of the four primary modes it was last in (moonlight,low,medium or high) on an off/on click. Now once it’s back in that moonlight,low,medium,high settings from tail tapping. The next side switch press puts it in low then medium then high. Moonlight comes back on the start of the second cycle through.

I love the UI. If I’m running around the house in moonlight it’s always in moonlight regardless of who many times I tap the tail switch on/off. Same for the other three modes. If I need a quick out of the special modes a quick tail tap will revert back to the last of the 1-4 modes brightness levels last used. As a cop this is the perfect UI, quick and easy to use.

For that hard to remove bezel I used the flat of a multi tool as a twist bar. Lots of downward force needed as the bezel twist off. Water is never leaking from that end, it’s very tight. The strike bezel is heavy frosted steel capable of sticking in a pine 2×4 with a good strike.

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texas shooter wrote:
JasonWW wrote:
Newlumen wrote:
JasonWW wrote:
How do you turn the light on and off?

Is it one click of the side switch for both?

Tailswitch is use to turn on and turn off..

Crying

The UI is easy. In moonlight,low,medium and high the tail switch is on/off only keeping it set in that selected mode. If you’re in turbo, strobe, SOS or beacon the tail switch defaults it to the last of the four primary modes it was last in (moonlight,low,medium or high) on an off/on click. Now once it’s back in that moonlight,low,medium,high settings from tail tapping. The next side switch press puts it in low then medium then high. Moonlight comes back on the start of the second cycle through.

I love the UI. If I’m running around the house in moonlight it’s always in moonlight regardless of who many times I tap the tail switch on/off. Same for the other three modes. If I need a quick out of the special modes a quick tail tap will revert back to the last of the 1-4 modes brightness levels last used. As a cop this is the perfect UI, quick and easy to use.

For that hard to remove bezel I used the flat of a multi tool as a twist bar. Lots of downward force needed as the bezel twist off. Water is never leaking from that end, it’s very tight. The strike bezel is heavy frosted steel capable of sticking in a pine 2×4 with a good strike.

Thanks TS. I tried to install the bezel. I couldn’t turn the original bezel by hands.. I will use multi tool.

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texas shooter wrote:
JasonWW wrote:
Newlumen wrote:
JasonWW wrote:
How do you turn the light on and off?

Is it one click of the side switch for both?

Tailswitch is use to turn on and turn off..

Crying

The UI is easy.


Easy, yes. Desirable, no.

It’s like the stock L6. You have to switch hand positions to turn on, change modes. That is liked by very few. There is no need for it. They can easily make the side switch control everything as well as have the tail switch function as it currently does.

Newlumen
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JasonWW wrote:
texas shooter wrote:
JasonWW wrote:
Newlumen wrote:
JasonWW wrote:
How do you turn the light on and off?

Is it one click of the side switch for both?

Tailswitch is use to turn on and turn off..

Crying

The UI is easy.


Easy, yes. Desirable, no.

It’s like the stock L6. You have to switch hand positions to turn on, change modes. That is liked by very few. There is no need for it. They can easily make the side switch control everything as well as have the tail switch function as it currently does.

Kind of.. L16 always came on turbo when you press the tailswitch..

Ft01 the light came on the last mode you set..

JasonWW
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L16?