REVIEW of Astrolux s43s flashlight (18650 -18350) copper

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Trail Trek
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REVIEW of Astrolux s43s flashlight (18650 -18350) copper

(Disclaimer: I was encouraged to do a review for BLF by forum member ‘Dinner-fork tongue’ so expect this to be very brief and understand i am NOT an expert so bear with me here.)

What does this light have:
The s43(s) is the same as the s43 but has a copper head section.
This light has USB charging (using a micro usb connector)
x4 LED
LED choices for this lights are:
(a) XP-G3: with a tint of 6000-7000K
(b) Nichia 219C: 5000K
Bear in mind the xp-g3 which is what i tested can output 2100 plus lumen, the Nichia will only top 1600 lumen.
TIR lens
Over 2000 lumen output from an 18650
Is Ipx6 rated
Has a drop rating of 1.5 metres
Can be used with 18650 or a shorter 1836 tube (images below show both tubes in use)

First impressions
Ok, my first impressions when seeing this light were that it lacked knurling on the battery tube section either on the 18650 tube or the 18350 which i have been using as well.
To be honest it is not an issue i have never once lost grip of it after carrying it every day for over a week. The tail section has 2 very small knurled sections which don’t seem to offer much grip.
Upon picking up the light the most noticeable thing is the head weight. Yes, copper is a great conductor but dam this is heavy, unless you can’t live without looking at copper or you don’t care about carry weight you may want to consider getting the s43 instead.

User interface
UI on this thing is a dream when i compare it to the S42. The UI on the s42 was horrible in my opinion, even after forcing myself to carry it for 8 days i still hated it. Narsil v1.3 on the s43 is in comparison a dream to use.
1 click for on
1 click for off
- click and hold when on to ramp up in lumens, let go and click and hold to go back down.

2 clicks for instant turbo
-double click again for strobe (this function is off by default)

3 clicks for batt check

4 click for electronic lockout

5 clicks to turn on momentary mode (click for full output, release for off.)
- to disable momentary mode you need to twist tailcap on then off to reset.

Beam
Beam pattern for this is surprisingly good, despite having a quad emitter setup, the TIR does a great job and there is no particular annoying ‘flower petal’ effect at the outer ranges of the beam. The TIR lens does a fantastic job of making a pleasant floody beam.

Output
Turbo is very good, and even at high setting this light puts out more than enough for medium distance work, obviously a TIR setup isn’t going to help you see over a field or to extreme distances.
Here is a beam shot of me pointing up into the air:
18-s43
And here is me in the same place using same settings but with the Olight s2 baton for comparison:
17-s2-baton
My guesstimates for output are
Low = around 1 lumen
Max ramp = over 1000 lumen
Turbo = well over 2100 lumen to my eyes for a TIR

Heat
Ok we all know that these days lights try to push silly lumen levels so they sound good, then the poor users have to wear oven mitts to use them so i will be honest, yes it gets hot. Turbo step down was 46 seconds and the copper head was too hot to touch, meaning you need to hold it a certain way. Running on maximum ramping was more sensible and the heat was manageable in the cold 2-3 degree centigrade air i tested it in multiple times over multiple days.

Charging
This flashlight has built in USB charging which is handy but bearing in mind this is a new light why are we still getting a micro USB connector, all lights should be starting to use type-C by now, if ‘on the road’ can do it so can Astrolux. Plug in the USB cable and the power button turns a lovely red like a demons eye.

Summing up
Pros:
Copper head looks very nice
Narsil UI is bliss to use
Has electronic lockout which is great for any sided switch light
USB charging is handy to have
TIR works very well

Cons:
Copper makes head very heavy
USB flap means this is only an ipx6 (not water proof)
USB uses micro usb connector (we are nearly in 2019 please can all new lights use USB type-C!)
Gets very hot very fast, but no worse than an emisar d4 or others who push high lumen but short runtimes before step down.

Overall for the price i have little to complain about other than copper weight and heat. I will enjoy owning this light having bought it.

Here are some images to help anyone wanting a closer look:

Images (click any image for a larger version)
1 2 3 4 5 20181128-222617-01 20181128-222627-2-01 20181128-222659-01 20181218-141422-01 20181218-141523-01 20181218-141537-01-01 20181218-141551-01 20181218-141608-01 20181218-141625-01 20181218-141657-01 20181218-141730-01 20181218-141747-01 20181218-141857-01 20181218-142052-01 20181218-142159-01 20181218-142242-01 20181218-142332-01

Edited by: Trail Trek on 12/18/2018 - 16:51
junglejim13660
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Great review TT. I’m going to look into some oven mitts before I consider buying this light. LOL Thumbs Up
USA
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thanks for the review. Good pictures as well. the copper does improve the looks of this light.

JasonWW
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You can reset the thermal stepdown to limit how hot it gets. Since this gets hot really quick, there is some lag between the stepdown and it’s external temperature. This slows the exterior to get too hot IMO. Once I adjusted it to step down a bit sooner it’s nicer to use and it steps down in smaller increments. I suggest everyone reset the thermal limit.

Unlike the S43, the S43S has a double tail spring and a brass button on the driver. This allows for even higher outputs over the aluminum S43 model.

Texas Ace Lumen Tube and JoshK Sphere calibrated with Maukka lights

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