Need advice! Astrolux ec01 or sofirn if25

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Nitewalker
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Need advice! Astrolux ec01 or sofirn if25

Which brand do you prefer more, astrolux or sofirn?
What is build quality, driver eficiency and quality of sofirn flashlights?

I have experience with astrolux lights, but I’ve never owned any of sofirn products. If anyone has experience with both brands, please share your opinion.

I’m hesitating between astrolux ec01 and sofirn if25. Which one is more reliable?

Which one would you recommend between two ot these?

Thanks in advance

PS: Sorry for asking so many questions

Edited by: Nitewalker on 05/20/2020 - 21:27
Nitewalker
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Anyone ??

Scallywag
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I would lean toward Sofirn over Astrolux for reliability. That said, the Astrolux has a dirt-simple driver by comparison.

That said, they’re very different lights. The EC01 is a compact XHP50.2 light, but I’d wager it’s a lot more useful outdoors than the IF25, which is a quad-led TIR flooder.

Sofirn is a step up from Astrolux IMO. Astrolux tries to take a popular light idea and make it as cheap as possible – in some cases very directly ripping off other lights, and in other cases just following trends the same way as other manufacturers. Their quality has never impressed me, and it seems like little issues plague their products which should otherwise be quite good offerings. Maybe you do get what you pay for.

Sofirn has made an effort to work directly with the flashlight community to develop better lights. They still have offerings more suited for the general public, but they generally try to get things right. Some of their lights have been fantastic hits, while others seem to be slight misses – but this is generally not due to quality shortcomings, but design decisions or oversights.

Personal experience? My MF02 is frustrating. It was at the time by far the best $/m of throw that went beyond jacket-pocket sized lights (C8, Z1/cometa, etc.). But it has such horrific standby drain that I can’t leave it sitting without physically locking it out – and that’s on a four-cell light! Most of their popular products have threads started for (or transformed into) discussing the common issues. And there’s always an example of a light which executed the same/similar idea better (maybe the price points didn’t match, but there we are again).

I’ll be honest: It’s hard for me to imagine they messed up the EC01 very much. It’s just too simple of a light. But it is cool white (because 3V XHP50 only comes in CW), and that’s an entirely different ballgame than the tint-mixing IF25. Heck, I’d put it up against a D4v2 or something first…

And if you want my real answer, I’d say to grab a Noctigon KR4 instead of either. But that’s just me

EDC Rotation: ZL SC62(w) | Jaxman E2L XP-G2 5A | Purple S2+ XPL-HI U6-3A | D4 w/ Luxeon V | RRT-01 | Purple FW3A, 4000K SST20
EagTac D25C Ti | DQG Slim AA Ti | Jaxman E3 | UF-T1 by CRX | Nitecore EX11.2
L6 XHP70.2 P2 4000K FET+7135 | Jaxman M8 | MF02 | Jaxman Z1 CULNM1.TG | Blue S2+ w/ ML Special
Unfinished: Supfire M6 3xXHP50.2, Sofirn C8F, Sofirn SP70
Others: Nitecore EC23 | Nebo Twyst | Streamlight ProTac 1AA | TerraLux LightStar 100

Nitewalker
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Scallywag wrote:
I would lean toward Sofirn over Astrolux for reliability. That said, the Astrolux has a dirt-simple driver by comparison.

That said, they’re very different lights. The EC01 is a compact XHP50.2 light, but I’d wager it’s a lot more useful outdoors than the IF25, which is a quad-led TIR flooder.

Sofirn is a step up from Astrolux IMO. Astrolux tries to take a popular light idea and make it as cheap as possible – in some cases very directly ripping off other lights, and in other cases just following trends the same way as other manufacturers. Their quality has never impressed me, and it seems like little issues plague their products which should otherwise be quite good offerings. Maybe you do get what you pay for.

Sofirn has made an effort to work directly with the flashlight community to develop better lights. They still have offerings more suited for the general public, but they generally try to get things right. Some of their lights have been fantastic hits, while others seem to be slight misses – but this is generally not due to quality shortcomings, but design decisions or oversights.

Personal experience? My MF02 is frustrating. It was at the time by far the best $/m of throw that went beyond jacket-pocket sized lights (C8, Z1/cometa, etc.). But it has such horrific standby drain that I can’t leave it sitting without physically locking it out – and that’s on a four-cell light! Most of their popular products have threads started for (or transformed into) discussing the common issues. And there’s always an example of a light which executed the same/similar idea better (maybe the price points didn’t match, but there we are again).

I’ll be honest: It’s hard for me to imagine they messed up the EC01 very much. It’s just too simple of a light. But it is cool white (because 3V XHP50 only comes in CW), and that’s an entirely different ballgame than the tint-mixing IF25. Heck, I’d put it up against a D4v2 or something first…

And if you want my real answer, I’d say to grab a Noctigon KR4 instead of either. But that’s just me

Thank you very much for a detailed explanation and sharing your own opinion. It cleared up things for me.

I agree, Noctigon kr4 is great edc light, but it’s a bit pricey(and for a reason ofc). But for that money, and maybe a bit more extra, I would probably buy some imalent or acebeam edc flashlight. It’s just my opinion.

But thanks again for advices and recommendations, I am relatively new to this forum and in flashlight hobby, so every opinion from someone who is more experienced counts. It was very helpful. Cheers Thumbs Up

Th558
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I think the EC01 is made my Sofirn. The reflector, bezel and charging cover are identical to the SP33 v3.

BurningPlayd0h
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Why these two, especially since they’re so different?

Nitewalker
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Th558 wrote:
I think the EC01 is made my Sofirn. The reflector, bezel and charging cover are identical to the SP33 v3.

Yes. It seems that you are right.
And one another thing that I don’t like is illuminated switch. It’s high setting is way too bright, but it can be reduced by adding a resistor to switch board.

Nitewalker
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BurningPlayd0h wrote:
Why these two, especially since they’re so different?

Well I’m hesitating between two of these because I need some compact edc light with solid power and battery capacity. Beam profile doesn’t bother me as much. Sofirn if25 seems a bit more compact than astrolux ec01, and both of them are 21700 lights, both utilize on-board charging. I was just not sure how good sofirn flashlights are.

SerenityNow
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Nitewalker wrote:
BurningPlayd0h wrote:
Why these two, especially since they’re so different?

Well I’m hesitating between two of these because I need some compact edc light with solid power and battery capacity. Beam profile doesn’t bother me as much. Sofirn if25 seems a bit more compact than astrolux ec01, and both of them are 21700 lights, both utilize on-board charging. I was just not sure how good sofirn flashlights are.

Sofirn is good to go! Keep in mind there are two versions – the IF25 and the new IF25A. If you don’t care about tint ramping (changing coolness/warmness of the beam), I’d suggest the IF25A. The IF25A also comes with nice 4000K SST-20 LEDs – they’re great.

Nitewalker
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SerenityNow wrote:
Sofirn is good to go! Keep in mind there are two versions – the IF25 and the new IF25A. If you don’t care about tint ramping (changing coolness/warmness of the beam), I’d suggest the IF25A. The IF25A also comes with nice 4000K SST-20 LEDs – they’re great.

I didn’t know that there was IF25A version. Yeah, I agree, I prefer 4000k tint over 6500k myself, and sst-20 leds are nice. And it is around 4000 lumens. That’s awesome.

Thanks a lot for sharing it bro. I will most likely go for this one.

Zappaman
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Uhmmm… not to be a buzz kill but the 4K version of the NEW IF25a isn’t anywhere near 4K in output… closer to 2k lumens. You’re trading off lumens for superb color rendering here.

But for the form factor of the IF25a, 2k lumens is a lot of output! Still, if you want lumens out the butt, then the 6500k version will get you 3800 of them there lumens (according to Sofirn). Yet to be known though, but probably close as Sofirn usually comes in somewhere near their target output claims… but we’ll all have to wait and see here VERY soon.

A few years ago, I’d jump on the higher output version but my taste on color has me sitting on an order the last two weeks for the 4K version. And the Anduril UI alone makes either version a “must have” for me! I’ll probably buy the 6500k version after the review comes in- can’t have too many lights… among other toys I guess. Big Smile

They supposedly are shipping as I write this. Thumbs Up

ZappaMan

Funtastic
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Scallywag wrote:

I’ll be honest: It’s hard for me to imagine they messed up the EC01 very much. It’s just too simple of a light. But it is cool white (because 3V XHP50 only comes in CW)

This is wrong. The EC01 comes both in NW and CW now. I have the NW 5000K and it’s excellent, no issues at all.

Keep in mind the IF25 heats up fast, so the IF25A is going to be even worse.

You mention the switch led being too bright. With Anduril UI you can set it to Off, Low, High, Beacon (some models are missing beacon)

The IF25 was rated at 2300 lumens but I tested 1650 ANSI

Texas Ace Lumen Tube calibrated with maukka lights

patmurris
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If you are not too picky regarding tint and CRI, i would go with the EC01 in NW. IMO it is one of the best (for the price) general purpose compact light of the moment with a lot of power under the hood if need be. However don’t expect a light this size to be able to sustain more then 600-800 lumen continuously.

The dual tint IF25 is somewhat a waste since you only use half of the emitters…

Th558
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4000K 95cri SST20 should have about 66% output of the 6500K.

Nitewalker
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Thanks for sharing your thoughts guys. You told me everything I need to know. Now I just have to make a decision wich one suits me best.

sungar
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Personally from those two I would pick astrolux, but definitively you should look at amutorch e3 too.

Nitewalker
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@sungar

Oh yes, I almost forgot about Amutorch. E3 is a great flashlight as well. Little monster

Funtastic
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If you did get the EC01 you’d have to calibrate the thermal sensor as is the case for any light using Anduril

Texas Ace Lumen Tube calibrated with maukka lights

Couchmaster
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One more opinion here. Not comparing those models 2 directly, just some observations. 1ST) I feel Sofirn has a top notch price to performance ratio. That is, they have high quality at a budget price. Thus, I own many of their products and have not ever been disappointed (Convoy is another one). If you look up you’ll see a bunch of us whining about the Astrolux S43 and others complaining about other Astrolux products. Then yesterday this happened and I posted it to the “Shipping will take many moons” thread here: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/72552?page=3

Couchmaster wrote:
Color me shocked and in love. Get to work today and there are 2 Sofirn SP10S flashlights here that Sofirn sent to me from the Sofirn store in NY. (I have had a single one on order since Jan 21st still stuck in China). There was no note or paperwork, just 2 brand new well packed excellent SP10S flashlight kits (with charger). If anyone starts a “Best vendor thread” of companies that have gone “above and beyond” to take good care of their customers please add this post to it and make sure Sofirn is on top of the list.

THANK YOU SOFIRN I LOVE YOU!!!

So there are only 3 choices: Sofirn, Sofirn or Sofirn:-)

Nitewalker
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I’ve bought 2 Astrolux ec01 flashlights for a ridiculously low price from a friend. It was a good deal so I bought two of them. I must say that I am impressed with this light. It’s built like a tank, and it’s very compact. It has a very useful illumination even on lower levels, and yet you have quick access to blindingly 3500 lumens if you need it, from a single emitter, or should I say led (with 4 emitters). It uses anduril firmware, fits 21700 battery(only unprotected), utilizes on-board charging, it is ipx8 waterproof, and it has a very decent throw for such a shallow op reflector and big led. And on top of that it fits almost any pocket. Very sturdy and very powerful light, with most flexible UI out there. IMO it is possibly the best value flashlight for the price. It also seems to me that it has a lot of “meat” for better heat dissipation. All of this makes it a great edc light.

Quote:
Couchmaster wrote: If you look up you’ll see a bunch of us whining about the Astrolux S43 and others complaining about other Astrolux products.

I agree with you. Astrolux s43 is poorly build. And I saw a lot other complaints on some Astrolux products, because it seems that Astrolux wants to put a product on sale as soon as possible, without paying too much attention to details. But EC01 is a great flashlight for the price, eve though it uses some components(bezel, reflector, swith cover and retaining ring, charging port cover) from some Sofirn flashlights.
Sofirn on the other hand puts a lot of effort into their products, from build quality of the lights, driver, firmware, packaging, user manual with runtimes, and they even include a battery under their brand. And all of that for a fairly budget price. And based on your experiences, I realised that Sofirn is very reliable brand, and I will for sure buy some Sofirn products in the future, to add up to my collection.

Speaking of EC01, I’ve calibrated temp sensor, so muggle mode works nice( which is very common on anduril lights). I also did some minor modifications, as seen on pictures below:

One on the left is stock, but right one is modified. And both of them are set to high setting of illuminated switch.

I’ve sanded down bezel to be flat, beacuse I like it more like this, and it makes flashlight even shorter than it is in its stock form. I’ve also added a 15kOhm resistor to the switch board to reduce brightness of illuminated switch, because it was too bright for my taste, and it also shortens lifespan of leds ((I know that it can be set to low setting in stand by mode, but it anyway gets too bright as you ramp up the brightness of main emitter))

And some beamshots

I have modded one on the right, because it has a slightly warmer tint(which I prefer), probably something between 5500-6000k or so. I was wrong when I said that I don’t care too much about a beam profile. Beam profile of EC01 is not the best one, but it is ok I guess.
Overall it is a great value edc flashlight for the price.

One other thing that I would like to make (maybe sounds a bit ridiculous, but anyway), I’d like to mod it the way that the switch turns red when battery voltage is around 3 volts. If anyone has any ideas, please share it, I will appreciate it very much.

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They are totally different from each other, different led, different output, different beam distance, different UI etc. But if you are talking about IF25A vs EC01, at least they both use Anduril firmware, max ouput is 3800LM (6500K) vs 3500LM.

IF25A has 6500K (70CRI) and 4000K (95CRI) to choose from. If you like extremely bright flashlight, choose 6500K; if you like neutral tint and high CRI, choose 4000K.

As for the quality, you need to know EC01 and IF25 are made by the same factory.

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LOG20
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I purchased the Astrolux EC01 for approximately £20. For that price it was insanely good value for money – built like a tank, pleasing 5000k tint, almost 300m throw, Anduril, USB=C on board charging and sustains high lumens with very little heat. Only problem is you will not fit it in your pants so definitely not EDC.