[Review] Convoy S12 - the best Convoy's flashlight?

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Mocarny
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[Review] Convoy S12 - the best Convoy's flashlight?
Convoy S12



3 in 1 review. At the end there will be a summary for those who like only particulars, in each topic I will color the key sentences for those who read a little more, and a long waffling for everyone else. Enjoy!



For VERY large photos: click -> on the photo page right click -> "Open image in new tab"

This flashlight was provided by Simon from his Convoy store free of charge, thank you! Smile

 

Table of Contents:

- General parameters
- Package content
- Appearance, parameters
- UI, runtime
- PWM
- Waterproof
- Light pattern, tint
- Beamshots
- Usage and my experiences
- Nitpicking
- Gallery
- Summary



General parameters

LED: 3x Nichia 219C 4000K (available SST20 and Nichia 219C 5700K as well)
Max ~ 1600lm
Battery: Li-Ion 21700
Modes: 0,1% - 3% - 30% - 100%
Switch: reverse
Tail stand: Yeees
Optics: 3x SMO reflector
AR coated lens
IP standard: No (it's waterproof though)
Reverse polarity protection:  Yes
Temperature protection: Yes
LVP: Yes
Size: 135mm x 35mm head
Weight with battery: 193g



Package content



The flashlight came in a small simple cardboard box and bubble wrap.

And attached lanyard. That's it. Convoy doesn't add any extras, basically it's probably always one gift - here we have a lanyard.

Appearance, parameters



Size: 135mm x 35mm head


Weight with battery: 193g




From left to right:

- Steel bezel with four cutouts from the inside - nice design. O-ring

- Head with AR coated lens,

3 LED's in SMO reflectors,

fins that helps with heat dissipation,

and bypassed driver's spring(and other spring too Wink ).


- Battery tube with o-rings (one in the tailcap side is very thick - good!) and square cut threads, well lubricated.

Anodization on the thread from the side of the switch means you can mechanically lock out the flashlight by slightly unscrewing the tailcap.

- Reverse switch

Two lanyard holes


WOW! Even securer grip! You won't drop your flashlight anymore


Ahem...two holes to attach lanyard the way it won't bother with tail standing


UI, runtime



UI
Very simple, 4 modes
0,1%
3%
30%
100%
Mode memory. Without strobe, without all other things. Just 4 modes.

Runtime
Tested with LG M50T 5000mAh (my measurements ~ 4750mAh) from Convoy's store

3% mode

Good stabilization and shines at full brightness for 26.5 hours. At 3% there is enough light for hiking or walking in the forest, as I tested. 

30% mode

Approx. 2 hours. 40 min The decrease in brightness at the beginning caused by the flashlight getting hot - it was in a cardboard box and despite that it did well. In practice, when walking, it heats up only slightly. Remember that 30% is about 500lm, so the flashlight deals well with heat dissipation. Wuben E10 from my other review in the same cardboard box during tests kept warming up and reducing the brightness at only 100lm.

I haven't tested the 100% mode, but it will shine for 3-5 minutes at full brightness, then it slowly reduces the brightness due to too high temperature.

 

Edit: Now I've tested  Big Smile

 

100%, not cooled, in a cardboard box, so...pretty bad cooling, to say at least

And ~ 2 min to stepping down.

 

Now, 100% standing on a table, and cooled with a fan

As you can see, much better this time, about 4 min to stepping down, so twice as good. And it goes to about 70% instead of 40%. And imagine how long it'd sustain 100% in cold windy (rainy) night - yes, it was raining tonight during my beamshots...

It is worth mentioning that the Turbo mode works with full brightness up to 3.7V on the battery, then its power is proportional to the voltage on the battery. Better done than in Convoy M3, where below 3.8V turbo did not turn on at all. More about it in "My Experiences"

PWM



NOPE


Waterproof



Convoy has not declared any IP standard, but we will check during the 2 hours of immersion in the aquarium.


I clicked the switch underwater several times. No moisture inside. No IP standard, but the test showed that you can rely on the flashlight even in a heavy downpour.


Light pattern, tint




The dot in the center is the center of the beam (approx.), each line at an interval of 15cm. The distance from the wall is 70cm, and the beam diameter is about 90cm.
Beam is so jagged, but wide and fairly even. Not that rosy as on the picture. The Nichia version has a light throw, but SST20 will definitely be more throwy. Slightly yellowish tint, it was too much yellow for me, especially in the forest where it is more visible. If I had to choose again, I would choose SST20 5000K. Low CRI, but neutral color instead of yellowish. But it is only my opinion Wink

Maybe I'm a bit allergic to yellow and it bothers me too much. At home S12 looks neutral, but in forest the amount of yellow bothers me, if I could get that Nichia but 4700K, it would be perfect.

Beamshots



ISO200, t2s, f/3,5 WB: sunlight

For better view, let's light up the forest!




You can enlarge these smaller photos to see the details (those poles)  Glasses 







On the side note, you can watch moving clouds and the moon. Oh and this star on the left. Or maybe it's Jupiter...


Comparison with Lumintop IYP07 Nichia 219C (left). S12 is more rosy, when compared as you can see. But for me S12 looks like IYP07, no that rosy as in this picture.


And something like this


And that as well


 

I consider the L2P to be the best tint here for me, it is a bit greenish, yes, I know, but in the forest you can't see it at all and the tint is slightly warm. Then there is the M3 with a more white tint, and then the M21B which is not yellow at all but only neutral and in the highest mode a bit purple.

Btw, if you are wondering what it looks like sitting in the forest and eating a croissant with cocoa, mixing them with a knife because you forgot the spoon, it looks something like this:


The darkness was lit up by the Wizard Pro XHP50 NW, photoshopped (I darkened the brightest spot - normally, Wizard doesn't have that even light) but the tint stays unchanged.

Usage and my experiences

 

My experiences are very positive. I used it twice in the forest, a total of several hours of walking and comparing with other flashlights. Personally, I prefer a colder color temperature than 4000K, but apart from that, the S12 has an ideal light pattern for me with Nichia diodes, for hiking in the forest. Wide diffused light with good range. Not as close-range and diffused as Wizard Pro with TIR honeycomb optics, so very good, because in the forest you need to look more farther than wider (to see those two shining dots far away Crazy ). Perfect balance. However, if I chose again, I would choose SST20 5000K because of the neutral color.
Modes were also selected very well, 0.1% for close distances around you, 3% for walking, 30% is very comfortable in the forest because you can see a lot everywhere, and probably optimal brightness on the bike, 100% more for a momentary glow, but it gives so much light.
I was in the forest last night with several flashlights, incl. Convoy M3. Before I came to this photo spot (about 15 minutes walking) I was shining M3 on Turbo from time to time. Total time on Turbo was approx. 5 min and 5 min on 40%. After reaching the photo spot, the flashlight no longer allowed me to turn on Turbo (that happens when the battery voltage is too low). It was indeed cold, but after returning home, I checked and a 4.09V on the cell. C'mon... Why am I complaining about this? The way it works in S12 is much better, Turbo works at full power to about 3.7V on the battery, but then there is no "can not be turned on" only Turbo output is proportional to the input voltage.

Ps. I recommend Convoy's holster, it fits nicely.  Party 


Nitpicking


So everything about all the flaws. Every cons, to sum up.
S12 has few disadvantages. The V-shaped knurling on the tailcap has sharp edges and will peel off first. The holes for the lanyard also have sharp edges and will probably cut the lanyard after some time. There is also no given IP water and dustproof standard - but it doesn't matter since it passed the submersion test in the aquarium for 2 hours. And that's it..? As for me, I am bothered by this yellowish 4000K tint, especially in the forest, because it doesn't get along well with the leaves.

 

Gallery










Summary



Convoy S12 is a great flashlight. Powered by 21700, small and polished - bypassed springs, the possibility of mechanical lock out by slightly unscrewing the tailcap, AR coated lens, and a steel bezel. What more could you want? I can't find significant flaws in this flashlight. Nchia 219C gives a cool, diffused light with a slight throw. I haven't tested SST20, but it definitely throws more. Depends on what you prefer, I like the combination of the SMO reflector with the Nichia diode.
Nichia 219C 4000K is too warm for me for trips in the forest. Everything was a bit yellowish. If I had to choose again, I would take the SST20 5000K version. More throw at the cost of less distraction (so bad for me - I think the spot-spill ratio in the Nichia version is perfect in the forest), but the tint is more pleasant for me in the outdoors. Again, it is only my opinion, I'm allergic to too warm light.
S12 powered by 21700 cell with 3 diodes, the dimensions and weight match some 18650 flashlights, I fully recommend.

Pros:
- good spill/spot proportion
- full brightness stabilization
- lightweight, small
- steel bezel

Cons:
- sharp edges on tailcap's V knurling and on lanyard's holes

About host - threads, knurling o-rings and so on
Rating: 9/10

About light - UI, tint and so on
My Nichia 219C 4000K version doesn't suits me, but there is plenty of choice, so
Rating: 9/10

1 - very bad flashlight hurts to look at, terrible quality, not worth any (even very low) price
5 - average flashlight, at a reasonable price and for occasional (in its category) use - for the average person "great"
10 - flashlight meets all my expectations in a given category (e.g EDC, headlamp, thrower), it's durable and neatly made, perfect light tint, worth its (even slightly inflated) price


I hope you enjoyed!
Edited by: Mocarny on 10/09/2019 - 17:56
lightdecay
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Thanks for the review! Very useful.

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Thanks for the review!

I wonder if you have a Sofirn C8F for comparison.

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Yep, enjoyed. Thanks. I have 2700K version and enjoying it more than I was expecting.

Mocarny
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Caleb wrote:
Thanks for the review!

I wonder if you have a Sofirn C8F for comparison.

Sorry, I don’t have Sad

1stein wrote:
I have 2700K version

Maybe I got allergic to warm colors recently… I compared my S12 4000K with Convoy H1 4200K and S12 looks more neutral, H1 is rosy Tired

I think I’ll get SST20 5000K and finally judge which one is better for me. On white wall S12 indeed looks very neutral, but in forest strange things start to happen and I see it more yellowish and it bothers me.

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Nice review Thumbs Up

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Mocarny wrote:
I think I’ll get SST20 5000K
Facepalm

You’d better get 3A XPL-HI’s instead.

virence.com rosy 3500K R9080 Wizard Pro

SKY69
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Great video very helpful insight.

Mocarny
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Ryzbor wrote:
Mocarny wrote:
I think I’ll get SST20 5000K
Facepalm

You’d better get 3A XPL-HI’s instead.


So, 7xSST20 5000K flashlight is on the way to me, Big Smile so I’ll try and check if it’s as bad as you’re saying. HI is too much throwy, but maybe I’ll get HD, 3C or 3D. Will see.

I was using Wizard Pro NW, which is cold white, during my beamshots, I think it’s the reason S12 Nichia looked so yellow to me. In fact, SST20 4000K in FW3A is less yellowish than Nichia in S12, I compared both today.
.
.
.
Edit: I added first 15 min of 100%, cooled with a fan, and not cooled for comparison. I was sure this host can sustain 100%, 1600lm for pretty long

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Caleb wrote:
Thanks for the review!

I wonder if you have a Sofirn C8F for comparison.

The C8F is much cooler with a well-defined hotspot, compared to the S12 w/ 219c. Smile

I haven’t done any measurements or an extensive comparison, but both lights are different enough that I see myself using both regularly.

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Mocarny wrote:
Ryzbor wrote:
Mocarny wrote:
I think I’ll get SST20 5000K
Facepalm

You’d better get 3A XPL-HI’s instead.


So, 7xSST20 5000K flashlight is on the way to me, Big Smile so I’ll try and check if it’s as bad as you’re saying. HI is too much throwy, but maybe I’ll get HD, 3C or 3D. Will see.

I was using Wizard Pro NW, which is cold white, during my beamshots, I think it’s the reason S12 Nichia looked so yellow to me. In fact, SST20 4000K in FW3A is less yellowish than Nichia in S12, I compared both today.
.
.
.
Edit: I added first 15 min of 100%, cooled with a fan, and not cooled for comparison. I was sure this host can sustain 100%, 1600lm for pretty long

SST-20s are throwier than X-PL HIs…

Mocarny
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BurningPlayd0h wrote:
Mocarny wrote:
Ryzbor wrote:
Mocarny wrote:
I think I’ll get SST20 5000K
Facepalm

You’d better get 3A XPL-HI’s instead.


So, 7xSST20 5000K flashlight is on the way to me, Big Smile so I’ll try and check if it’s as bad as you’re saying. HI is too much throwy, but maybe I’ll get HD, 3C or 3D. Will see.

I was using Wizard Pro NW, which is cold white, during my beamshots, I think it’s the reason S12 Nichia looked so yellow to me. In fact, SST20 4000K in FW3A is less yellowish than Nichia in S12, I compared both today.
.
.
.
Edit: I added first 15 min of 100%, cooled with a fan, and not cooled for comparison. I was sure this host can sustain 100%, 1600lm for pretty long

SST-20s are throwier than X-PL HIs…


Yes, I know, this light is for review, and they wanted to send SST20 instead of XPL, so… But throwy SST20 with TIR optics like in FW3A looks great to me, and in S12 is smooth reflector, so I’d like to have more floody LED
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Mocarny wrote:
BurningPlayd0h wrote:
Mocarny wrote:
Ryzbor wrote:
Mocarny wrote:
I think I’ll get SST20 5000K
Facepalm

You’d better get 3A XPL-HI’s instead.


So, 7xSST20 5000K flashlight is on the way to me, Big Smile so I’ll try and check if it’s as bad as you’re saying. HI is too much throwy, but maybe I’ll get HD, 3C or 3D. Will see.

I was using Wizard Pro NW, which is cold white, during my beamshots, I think it’s the reason S12 Nichia looked so yellow to me. In fact, SST20 4000K in FW3A is less yellowish than Nichia in S12, I compared both today.
.
.
.
Edit: I added first 15 min of 100%, cooled with a fan, and not cooled for comparison. I was sure this host can sustain 100%, 1600lm for pretty long

SST-20s are throwier than X-PL HIs…


Yes, I know, this light is for review, and they wanted to send SST20 instead of XPL, so… But throwy SST20 with TIR optics like in FW3A looks great to me, and in S12 is smooth reflector, so I’d like to have more floody LED

Ah, you’re comparing with the 219C, not SST-20. Thought you meant X-PL HI vs SST-20 in that other light you just bought.

LH351D would probably be a good match for the S12, very similar beam profile to X-PL HD.

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Convoy S12 used a 6amp CB or driver and triple led. So it draw about 6amp or 5800mA at full throttle which able to run it for 2 minutes.

What were your thought about heat dissipation/loss vs power output which in term of lumen…do you think this is the best outputing level for a 21700 battery? Have you ever think if there was a flaw and probably there a room of improvement, what would it be?

I order the S12 in 2700k version, it should be pick by today. Can’t wait actually. LOL

In search of the most ideal flashlight in town:
1. BRIGHTNESS
2. Durabillity
3. Design
4. Quality
5. Price$$$

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And i have got 219C 5700K...BLOODY WONDERFULL!!!

I thought it will be too cool but guess not. It looks like 219C 5000K 90CRI (but to my old eyes more yellowish), last Hank had in the store before withdrawing them.

Now i'm sure that using big size flashlights are meant for 5000K (not colder) and smaller like FW goes better with 4000K.

 

WTB Titanium 4sevens Quarks & Jetbeam TCR1

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hasddie293 wrote:
Convoy S12 used a 6amp CB or driver and triple led. So it draw about 6amp or 5800mA at full throttle which able to run it for 2 minutes.

What were your thought about heat dissipation/loss vs power output which in term of lumen…do you think this is the best outputing level for a 21700 battery? Have you ever think if there was a flaw and probably there a room of improvement, what would it be?

I order the S12 in 2700k version, it should be pick by today. Can’t wait actually. LOL


S12 can sustain Turbo much longer than 2 min, the test was in cardboard box with no cooling and even worse than standing on a table. Second test was fan cooled, 4 min turbo. When I was taking beamshots to this review, there were pretty cold in the forest, and S12 got seriously hot after about 4 min.

Output is very good for me, of course there are 21700 lights with more and more lumens, but you know, battery will be drained very quick. 1600lm is ok for what I use flashlight for (wandering in the forest, listening calm music and thinking about life…yeah). And some campings and mountains, but I prefer headlamp then. In fact, I use it on 3% most of the time, and 30% sometimes. I use 100% rarely (it drains battery pretty fast), so I don’t care that much about Turbo runtime – 2 or 2,5 min, whatever.

Not much to improve for me now, I really like my Nichia version as it is, it is in fact more yellowish than SST 4000K in FW3A, but still not that bad. If I bought SST version, I’d probably use Dc-Fix to have more even beam.

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hasddie293 wrote:
Convoy S12 used a 6amp CB or driver and triple led. So it draw about 6amp or 5800mA at full throttle which able to run it for 2 minutes.

What were your thought about heat dissipation/loss vs power output which in term of lumen…do you think this is the best outputing level for a 21700 battery? Have you ever think if there was a flaw and probably there a room of improvement, what would it be?

I order the S12 in 2700k version, it should be pick by today. Can’t wait actually. LOL


To add to Mocarny’s data, these are my runtime charts – at about the three minute mark, I was at 90% relative brightness then it starting heading down fast. This was indoors at around 23 degrees C, no cooling. Bottom chart is just a zoom of the first 10 minutes.

Mocarny
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Thank you Smile
It looks like mine – don’t you have a feeling the 30% mode is more like 38% ? It stepped down to about 38%, and when I checked lumens, it looks like maybe ~ 35%.

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Mocarny wrote:
Thank you Smile It looks like mine – don’t you have a feeling the 30% mode is more like 38% ? It stepped down to about 38%, and when I checked lumens, it looks like maybe ~ 35%.

The percentages are amperage, not output. Due to the non-linear current response of LEDs those numbers not matching is normal.

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Where is the best place to get this light?

I love my wife’s toy poodle

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I have a decent deal for it. http://budgetlightforum.com/node/68694

mgracia85 wrote:
Where is the best place to get this light?

©freemex1thedeals.com

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Yeah, percentages are on amps – I got:

Low: 10mA (6mA)
Med: 170mA (180mA)
High: 1.8A (1.8A)
Turbo: 6A (6A)

Amounts in brackets are what the percentages in the description work out to be. So low is higher, medium is slightly lower, but high and turbo are dead on.

/shrug

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Finally S12 sst20 2700k has arrived! Yeah!!

Still daylight though, but try it just for moment in dark room….wew! I CAN’T believe it…I am well amazed by High cri output, shined it on my messy clothes…perfect to me. S12 is my first high cri, triple led flashlight. I think in term on lumen, it is bright and flood. I still can’t figure, but I did comparison with 6500k xt21x. I will do it later.

2nd thing, don’t we should know about how much candela it is? since sst20 known for throwy. I see this thing could do a lil bit of throw. Let see after night.

else, it was smaller and short than I was thought. Imagine 21700 cell, longer and bigger…s12 is really compact which is great! Smaller but brighter indeed. LOL anywany Vapcell 21700 4500mah red one I use fit well, just well enough…

In search of the most ideal flashlight in town:
1. BRIGHTNESS
2. Durabillity
3. Design
4. Quality
5. Price$$$

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I went Nichia because I’ve found the SST20s Simon sources are just too green for me. That said, next step is to put SST10 365nm in this thing.

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BurningPlayd0h wrote:
SST-20s are throwier than X-PL HIs…

XPL-HI’s in A and D tint bins have superior tint over it.

Another better option would be scalped 90CRI LH351D’s which are described as having a beam profile of something between HD and HI and have an extremely consistent near zero duv.

virence.com rosy 3500K R9080 Wizard Pro

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Just done testing.

Brighter, yes. I’m absolutely agree. In term of flood, it got usable spill. Although it used smooth reflector, the flood is wider and and I think the reason it got bit of throw.

Tint ? I choose 2700k bcos our eyes will feel better and yes, it felt much better than 6500k. But, I have to agree with mocarny, in green forest I thought it will light the green. Well it look not. But fine for me. 2700k become one my fav tint now.

In search of the most ideal flashlight in town:
1. BRIGHTNESS
2. Durabillity
3. Design
4. Quality
5. Price$$$

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hasddie293 wrote:
I CAN’T believe it…I am well amazed

I’m happy you like it, so my WOW about S12 is confirmed.

S12 is short indeed, longer than S2+ and shorter than M3, just in the middle between them. It’s the shortest 21700 light I have…I mean except Imalent DM70 that is disgustingly short as 21700, shorter than S2+ .

I went Nichia too, because of more flood and no tint shift I heard of. Not as much CRI as SST, but very good, a little bit too yellowish, but maybe I’ll use XPL HD another LED in the future… Or maybe this LH351D’s.

What do you use that powerfull UV light for, oweban?

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Just for fun – I’ve got plenty of lights that can compensate, but would love a UV light with more punch than the S2+ that I’ve got Smile

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Temperature stepdown can be easily removed on these convoy 6A drivers.
Also by stacking sense resistors output can be set higher or lower.

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Yep! Added an R050 to my S11; 7.2A is close to perfect for SST40 Wink

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You guy go try to mode em’ first, tell me if it work well later… Wink

In search of the most ideal flashlight in town:
1. BRIGHTNESS
2. Durabillity
3. Design
4. Quality
5. Price$$$

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