Pre-poll: Help me make a list of mode schemes

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sb56637
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Pre-poll: Help me make a list of mode schemes

Hello everyone,

I'd like to do another poll to see what sort of mode scheme everyone would prefer on their dream flashlight. Please help me make up a list of modes, and then I'll put them in a new poll. Last time there were quite a few suggestions that I never thought about, so I hope we can include them this time around. Let's try to look at what others have posted and not double-post the modes, and let's try to limit this post to just possible mode schemes, and then we can argue it out in the actual poll. It would be good if you could list how many lumens you would like on each mode.

Thanks, have fun!

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sb56637
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  • 3 infinitely variable modes
  • moonlight (0.2 lumens) > very low (1 lumen) > low (6 lumens) > medium (70 lumens) > maximum (whatever is reasonable)

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fran82
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Are you trying to make another custom flashlight? what will be this time?

I like the desing of akoray`s k106, Uniquefires AA-s1 and them......... One of these with xpg-r5 perhaps?

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sb56637
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fran82 wrote:

Are you trying to make another custom flashlight? what will be this time?

I like the desing of akoray`s k106, Uniquefires AA-s1 and them......... One of these with xpg-r5 perhaps?

Not sure yet.  Wink But yes, I'd like to do another. I'm also a big fan of the Akoray K-106 and Uniquefire AA-S1 design. But first I'd like to figure out what modes will be most popular.

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SirJohn
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I want mode memory (I know its tough). 1 lumen<15 lumen<70 lumen<max<2hz beacon

I know I'm a little odd.

fran82
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@sb56637 - > can be 3 or 5 modes PROGRAMMABLE like akoray k-106 programmable?

I am very interested in a custom flashlight but my needs are:

- AA style with clip (the akoray K-106/trustfire F20/uniquefire AA-S1 desing fits my needs, I have 4 of them)

- AA/14500 support

- Ramp mode to select mode preset

- xpg-r5 LED

- smooth reflector (not 100% neccesary, can be OP)

- Memory mode (but not 100% neccesary)

 

That would be my dream flashlight. I am waiting to be available the UltraFire U20 on DX, and the reviews of it of course. Is the ONLY flashlight that I want, but a custom akoray style with xpg-r5 can beat it)

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Don
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Single mode ramping - something like the Photon ReX without the flashing stuff.

 

Or 3-4 modes, something like the 4Sevens Preon mode sequence. Which has the flashing modes but you won't access them by accident.

 

Because of my eyesight, I find I need around 8-10 lumens in a headlamp to read in the dark - I don't have a lot of use for really low modes as my vision needs more light than that.

 

Ideally, I'd like something that can get 180+ lumens out of an NiMH which is doable but might be too costly for our purposes. If I can get 180 out of an NiMH I don't care if it will or won't take a 14500.

 

So a Turbo mode which doesn't have to be well enough cooled for more than 10 minutes - that trade-off is acceptable to me. If this needs a fancy sequence to get to, so much the better. The old Fenix P3D with its twist head to access turbo would be nice. This may add too much cost though.

 

I'm not fond of the current Fenix M L H setup and this is not a practical setting IMO with more than 3 modes.

 

so something like (very low) 0.1-3 lumens, low 10 lumens, normal of around 70 lumens and a top end of over 160 lumens. 

 

PWM flicker does not bother me, but it really irritates some people, so as high a PWM frequency as possible will be a big plus for some. As I understand it, the difference in price for this should be very small or nil. Anything above 1kHz is probably acceptable to nearly everyone.

 

Current regulation is more expensive, I believe, but some might prefer that. There are apparently theoretical efficiency gains (Given the realities of Chinese manufacturing, the differences may be more apparent than real) but these may be too high in cost to be ideal for our purposes.

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

brted
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I'd like to see a well-driven neutral R5 with an AKOray type of programmability and 3 modes, probably in a compact 18650 size (P60 is a little big), though I'd take a 14500 (I don't see how you can really get a sufficient draw out of an AA NiMH to get 250+ lumens). I think that is doable if someone can find the people who make the AKOray driver. The AKOray also has good memory, which I would want.

Now what I would really like is programmable modes that can be switched while the light is off. That way you can turn it on in the mode you want (and you could have a forward clicky, momentary on, and could do morse code without changing modes). I don't think this is something you will be able to get a in a budget light though. I've seen selector rings, side switches, and turning the bezel as ways to accomplish this, but ideally it would be something near the tail switch. Then you don't have to worry about memory because the memory is built in (though it would need to remember the modes that were programmed I guess)

SirJohn
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Hidden flashy modes. That's an idea.  Mr. Lite has that strange 2 level programming thing on their lights. I wonder if they can program it so that the flashy modes are on the second level and the first level has four well placed regular modes. As I said, kids love those flashy modes, but program them in so that you only see them when you absolutely really want to. I'm sure there is only .001% chance of actually using a flashy mode for a practical purpose, but for some reason I like the piece of mind of knowing that they are still there. Call it paranoia.

Don
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SirJohn wrote:

Hidden flashy modes. That's an idea.  Mr. Lite has that strange 2 level programming thing on their lights. I wonder if they can program it so that the flashy modes are on the second level and the first level has four well placed regular modes. 

Or the 4Sevens approach as used on the Preons (And probably the Quarks but I'm not sure about that as I don't have one) where you have to cycle through the three modes twice in very short succession then the flashing modes are accessible. This works well for me.

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

RoyalFizbin
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I like the fenix style turn the head to have two groups.  It's good that I can start on highest or lowest at my discretion.  If I don't have that option, I aways rather start on highest.  Low mode should be no less than 10 lumens.  I have never found a use for 1 lumen.  I don't have any Preons yet but the hidden blinking modes sounds like a great idea.

Hrvoje
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JETBeam I.B.S. is one of the best UI I've seen. This is basically 3 infinitely variable modes.

From Bugoutgear site:

I.B.S.(Infinite Brightness Setting) Technology!

Compared with the User Interface(UI) of previous JETBeam products, I.B.S. is superior due to its ease of use and efficiency. There are three memory modes in the I.B.S. circuit, each mode can be set by users for different brightness levels or functions. The brightness setting as well as strobe frequency of I.B.S. are infinitely variable, with no traditional preset limits at all. The I.B.S. UI is very simple and straight forward. Users will be able to adjust the brightness/function of the light quickly and easily.
Thanks to the infinite variable setting of the 3 different memory modes, users are going to have over one million brightness/function combinations, which will meet the requirements of any user.


Huny74
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My dreamlight has a set of 3 programmable modes for normal use and two hidden blinking modes: the alpin distress signal and a slow beacon. The brightness of the blinking modes and the frequency of the beacon is also adjustable. Turning the head or the tailcap activates a separate red LED w/o any "click"-noise.

Maybe impossible to achieve but imho ideal for any task outdoors may it be in the mountains, the sea, in the woods or in a cave.

Don
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RoyalFizbin wrote:

Low mode should be no less than 10 lumens.  I have never found a use for 1 lumen.  

 

I can see that people do have a use for really low modes, but with the light pollution around here, spotting the huge black dog in the park at night is an 50 lumen or more job. And that's when she is close to me.

 

I would be interested in a really long-running 10-20 lumen light that will run forever on an alkaline AAA - preferably smaller than a Fenix E01. Probably a pure flood light that could live on my keychain. Something like the Fenix E05 but smaller and half the price - or less.

Single mode for that would be fine. I would not mind a moonlight mode for that but I'd never use it. That would be perfect for searching under my desk in a very brightly lit office.

 

The last time I felt I needed a really low level light was while walking through bandit-infested country in 1985 in a very remote part of Africa. It was so dark that night that the glow-worms (Think really dim green LED - that is exactly what they look like) were almost dazzling. 10 lumens would have been blinding. I walked the 10 miles from the bus stop to where I was going mostly by touch. The reason I was walking was that bandits had already stolen just about everything I owned.

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

sb56637
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SirJohn wrote:

Hidden flashy modes. That's an idea.  Mr. Lite has that strange 2 level programming thing on their lights. I wonder if they can program it so that the flashy modes are on the second level and the first level has four well placed regular modes.

Very interesting idea! This is surely feasible right now, with the circuit that Mrlite already uses.

 

Any more non-programmable mode schemes you'd like to see?

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Don
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Something like low, med, max with a second set of modes that have ultra-low and whatever else. for the ultra-low fans this might not be ideal so I'd accept ultra-low, med, max with a second set of modes that do whatever...

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

sb56637
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I still need to read up on the Mrlite 2-stage 9-mode scheme. I think some of you tried to explain it with the KC-05 reviews, but I never could wrap my mind around it. And the part of Mrlite's owner's manual that explains the mode operation makes operating a nuclear power plant look like child's play by comparison.

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Don
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sb56637 wrote:

I still need to read up on the Mrlite 2-stage 9-mode scheme. I think some of you tried to explain it with the KC-05 reviews, but I never could wrap my mind around it. And the part of Mrlite's owner's manual that explains the mode operation makes operating a nuclear power plant look like child's play by comparison.

 

Till you get the knack of it (Which i do not always do) they are 4 mode lights that have 5 more inaccessible modes.

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

SirJohn
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Its kind of odd that MrLite uses that 2-stage circuit and then the modes for each stage are so similar. Its like the circuit was made to have regular modes on 1 level and then the auxiliary odd modes on the 2nd. I could go for a silver version of the LT2 (I think that's the AA one) and then have the primary level be 6 lumen<50 lumen<max, and then have the 2nd auxiliary level of being moonlight<beacon<strobe or whatever flashy modes people like. Wrap that up for under $25 and you have a winner and Fran gets his XP-G. (You could actually do up the whole LT series like this for people who want alternate battery types.)

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As I mentioned in another thread, a few simple pwm modes with exponentially increasing brightness/pulse density (the admin's favorite scheme ;)) would work really well with mode memory because it's essentially a programmable light.

 

"Programmable" lights are essentially this in concept, except they store the pulse width/density variable in much finer resolution and perhaps can't use a strict state machine internally to keep track of modes. But's all down to programming the exact same mcu differently, really, nothing physical/magical about it unless you want a special design and that costs $.

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RoyalFizbin
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Don wrote:

 

I would be interested in a really long-running 10-20 lumen light that will run forever on an alkaline AAA - preferably smaller than a Fenix E01. Probably a pure flood light that could live on my keychain. Something like the Fenix E05 but smaller and half the price - or less.

Single mode for that would be fine. I would not mind a moonlight mode for that but I'd never use it. That would be perfect for searching under my desk in a very brightly lit office.

 

 

I have a fenix E0.  It's almost what you're looking for.  20hr claimed runtime but only 5.5 lumens.  It uses a 5mm nichia and puts out really blue and dim light.  It's the smallest light fenix ever made. Smaller than any other 1aaa light i've ever seen.  Won it in one of the fenix survey giveaways.  I would have never purchased such a dim light.

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SirJohn wrote:

Hidden flashy modes. That's an idea.  Mr. Lite has that strange 2 level programming thing on their lights. I wonder if they can program it so that the flashy modes are on the second level and the first level has four well placed regular modes. 

 

I had this exact same idea floating around. That would be extremely convenient Smile 

 

Also for the record, I really love the Akoray k-106 styling as lots of ppl have mentioned! Still need to add one to the collection. I bought one for a friend and honestly its a piece of garbage so a quality light in that body would be great!

Don
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RoyalFizbin wrote:

Don wrote:

 

I would be interested in a really long-running 10-20 lumen light that will run forever on an alkaline AAA - preferably smaller than a Fenix E01. Probably a pure flood light that could live on my keychain. Something like the Fenix E05 but smaller and half the price - or less.

Single mode for that would be fine. I would not mind a moonlight mode for that but I'd never use it. That would be perfect for searching under my desk in a very brightly lit office.

 

 

I have a fenix E0.  It's almost what you're looking for.  20hr claimed runtime but only 5.5 lumens.  It uses a 5mm nichia and puts out really blue and dim light.  It's the smallest light fenix ever made. Smaller than any other 1aaa light i've ever seen.  Won it in one of the fenix survey giveaways.  I would have never purchased such a dim light.

 

I have both an E0 and an E01. I agree the E0 is too dim and the beam colour of the Nichia GS in the E01 is not pretty. There is clearly a market for such a light though, a lot of people seem interested in the E05 recently announced. I'm not interested in the Fenix price for that light though.

http://www.4sevens.com/product_info.php?cPath=22&products_id=2471

The E05 was in the back of my mind as I wrote that.

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

lightguy
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I think the mode levels should depend on battery type. I prefer the mode sequence of Lo-Mid-Hi-Max. I strongly prefer a properly working memory. It shouldn't be that hard to make. Skyray S-A1 does it correctly. If mode memory cannot be had, then Mid-Hi-Max-Lo is more practical. If a mode ring can be implemented at a reasonable cost and without adding too much size, then that would be perfect.

 

For single AA-size flashlight, I think the Lo-Mid-Hi levels used by ITP A3 is perfect. Just add a reasonable max level to it. The Lo, Mid and Hi levels should be the same for both NIMH and 14500 batteries. The Max can be different for each battery type, but should be reasonable for the battery type. Probably the Max level should give about 30 minutes runtime for both NIMH and 14500 batteries.

 

For larger than single AA flashlight, I would expect it to be brighter. Maybe the Lo-Mid-Hi levels should be increased by 50% from the single AA size levels. The Max should give about 1 to 2 hours runtime.

 

Please use the latest LED (XP-G) in neutral color.

 

BTW great website!  I also ordered a silver Mr Lite BLF AA-Y4E. Many thanks to Mr. Admin's effort.

fran82
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@sb56637 Can you "reveal" what is the next light you are going to "customize"..... to have an idea....

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Aloha and welcome to BLF lightguy!  Smile

Don wrote:

"But as I said long ago, you are more likely to be killed by a dead fish dropped by a seagull in the Sahara Desert than by a lithium ion

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The most user-friendly flashlight I own is the Eagletac P20A2 Mk IISmile.

 

This is because only 2 modes (max, medium) are accessible up-front where you need them.

One has to turn the bezel to change modes.The other modes (very low, strobe, beacon and SOS) are "hidden" but readily accessible when you need them. This is done by quickly (within 1 sec.) tightening/loosening the bezel, the number of times depending on which mode is wanted.

 

I think most of the time only 2 or 3 light levels are needed and strobe and the other stuff only occasionally (unless for specific uses, like bicycling).

Of course it's nice to want a lot of things. The bottom line is at what price point can these sort of features be incorporated into the design of a flashlight?

Lights out! That's when things get interesting...

SirJohn
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Don wrote:

I would be interested in a really long-running 10-20 lumen light that will run forever on an alkaline AAA - preferably smaller than a Fenix E01. Probably a pure flood light that could live on my keychain. Something like the Fenix E05 but smaller and half the price - or less.

 

Don, with that want, I'm suprised you haven't looked at the Nextorch K1 yet. About as small as you can get in AAA format.

http://www.lightake.com/detail.do/sku.NexTORCH_K1_SSC_P9_15_Lumens_LED_Flashlight_Black_(1xAAA)-33041

Don
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SirJohn wrote:

Don, with that want, I'm suprised you haven't looked at the Nextorch K1 yet. About as small as you can get in AAA format.

http://www.lightake.com/detail.do/sku.NexTORCH_K1_SSC_P9_15_Lumens_LED_Flashlight_Black_(1xAAA)-33041

 

Probably because I wasn't aware of it. thanks for the tip.

 

Is there another brand of light that looks very similar? I'm sure I've seen one that looked like it before, but can't place it.

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

SirJohn
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The one problem, it looks like, is that the K1 is more throwy than floody. I haven't seen it labeled as any other brand, though I understand that Heinnie in the Uk does sell it, albeit at a much higher price. I don't actually own one yet, but it has been on my list for a look for quite some time and lightake just started carrying it a couple of weeks ago. I may still order it at goinggear instead though, with it being a US dealer and getting the light much quicker and all.

Don
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lightguy wrote:

BTW great website!  I also ordered a silver Mr Lite BLF AA-Y4E. Many thanks to Mr. Admin's effort.

 

Welcome lightguy! Good to have you here.

 

Please do join in. Everyone's opinion is important so please do feel free to join in.

 

The numbers from my light tests are always to be found here.

https://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=0ApkFM37n_QnRdDU5MDNzOURjYllmZHI...

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