The best Single Cell* thrower?

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Artiet59
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The best Single Cell* thrower?
Noctigon K1 (osram or sbt90.2)
38% (13 votes)
FireFlies T9r (osram or Sbt90.2)
3% (1 vote)
Acebeam T28
3% (1 vote)
Convoy L21a CULPM1
15% (5 votes)
*Sofirn sp70
3% (1 vote)
Astrolux FT03 (any one of the 3)
21% (7 votes)
Something else
18% (6 votes)
Total votes: 34

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Artiet59
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So best can mean a lot of things – furthest throwing, brightest, best spill / throw combo, best heat management, etc. Originally I wanted to do this poll to find out what the farthest throwing single cell light is (I Think I know what it is), but I am now more interested in what people vote for given all of the parameters (throw, lumens, spill, HEAT, etc).

*single cell, meaning Not a 3x / 4x batterier carrier, (2) in series is like your holding a single cell regarding battery tube diameter. That is what I mean.

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twisted raven
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Well, it’s going to be an LEP for longest throw, rather it’s the Maxtoch L2k single celled version, or the Acebeam W30.

From my experience using pencil beam throwers, I find that I only look at their hotspots anyways, so I personally rather have an LEP instead of a pencil beam traditional LED. Very efficient reflectors still only put ~50-60% of the LED’s lumens into the hotspot, so a 1000 lumen Osram is putting out 500 lumens into a hotspot, which is what you’re getting with an LEP anyways.

I personally wouldn’t vote for anything using an SBT90.2. The SBT90 gets its throw from sheer lumen output, but it’s such a power hungry LED, that it’s very impractical to use past 30 seconds for anything less than BLF-GT sized hosts.

The larger LEPs’ beams stay so tight for such long distances, that I think they lose some practicality as well outside of impressing yourself and friends. Something smaller like an Acebeam W10 still puts out the same lumens, has good runtime and heat management, and its beam diverges sooner, so you get more useable coverage in real world situations.

I would probably use a W10 or equivalent.

Another light I would most likely use would be the Manker U22 III using an Osram. The optics will make for hotspot+corona with soft and minimal spill. Heat management will be okay, with great beam pattern.

Artiet59
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Oh wow, yea Stupid me, i didnt put any LEP on here.

 

My Apologies!

 

Make pretend the title also says Best LED single cell thrower.

 

I guess i didn't even think about the fact that I dont own a LEP and most people wont even think LED anymore for max throw.. maybe this poll is useless ... lol.

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dave1010
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Don’t think I can pick just 1. My favourite single cell throwers are:

  • Manker MC13 SBT90.2 – who needs run time anyway? (Haven’t taken this outside yet)
  • Lumintop GT Nano – you never know when you might need to see 300m away
  • Convoy Z1 with W2 – a zoomie but please don’t ban me

But if there’s a right answer then it’s probably the K1, which I don’t own.

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Cochise334ever
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twisted raven wrote:

I personally wouldn’t vote for anything using an SBT90.2. The SBT90 gets its throw from sheer lumen output, but it’s such a power hungry LED, that it’s very impractical to use past 30 seconds for anything less than BLF-GT sized hosts.

I disagree.Impractical in terms of What? Heat? Battery life?

I have Two single cell SBT90.2.K1 and NI40.In the winter I can run them 10 minutes plus.In warmer weather about 5 before I dial down.I have plenty of P42A to replace a depleted battery…that takes 30 seconds!

This is one of Thousands of examples on these forums where it comes down to preference and opinion.When it comes to my preference,what others think and choose is negligible .

twisted raven
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Impractical in terms of everything. They get too hot past 30 seconds to hold, and they drain the battery life in no time— especially if just a single cell. Off single cells, the output of the SBT90 drops very quickly, down to less than half of its initial ~4800 lumen output within seconds to minutes.

The SBT90.2 is amazing for a minute of turbo burst, but beyond that, it has limited use in extended practicality.

Yeah, I can see the NI40 host handling heat decently in cold European winters, but you’re definitely not sustaining that 4800 lumen output doing so.

Cochise334ever
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twisted raven wrote:
Impractical in terms of everything. They get too hot past 30 seconds to hold, and they drain the battery life in no time— especially if just a single cell. Off single cells, the output of the SBT90 drops very quickly, down to less than half of its initial ~4800 lumen output within seconds to minutes.

The SBT90.2 is amazing for a minute of turbo burst, but beyond that, it has limited use in extended practicality.

Yeah, I can see the NI40 host handling heat decently in cold European winters, but you’re definitely not sustaining that 4800 lumen output doing so.

I guess my tolerance is higher than you.I can hold either of those lights for close to 3 minutes in the summer.Way more in winter.30 seconds of use is an exaggeration.Yes..it is not 4800 lumens after 5 min. Of continuos use.At least 3500 in my eyes.In winter I have used 15 minutes probably around 2800 lumens at that point and time for a fresh battery.

I Love this LED..My TN42 also has its cousin..CFT90.I am Not fond of.pencil beam osram or LEP lights…they do nothing for me.

twisted raven
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I do agree that that emitters’ sweet spot is around 3000 lumens. I think 3000 lumens for a continuous 5-10 minutes is pretty practical. Hosts don’t get too hot at that output either, but do get very warm after around 10 minutes.

Artiet59
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I agree with the 3000 lumen amount, for extended run time of course. But really one of the most impressive throwers ive handled lately was the L21a with CULPM1, it can handle “turbo” for over 7 minutes, and doesn’t get hot. I dont undertsand it as it is almost identical to the setup of the K1 with the same emitter and almost same amp driver, but the K1 gets Hot. must be how HEAVY the L21a host is. makes a huge difference. Theyre both great lights with output, decent spill for an osram expecially, and longevity. I really like the xhp35 4000k for throwers too, in my K1 its nice! And ive heard nothing but grat things about the MF04 with it.

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Cochise334ever
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Artiet59 wrote:
But really one of the most impressive throwers ive handled lately was the L21a with CULPM1, it can handle “turbo” for over 7 minutes, and doesn’t get hot.

I also have that light.It Never gets hot.I run it for 20 minutes straight on max then switch batteries.For $45 you can not beat the price.As summer approaches I do not seeing that getting to hot to hold before battery depletion .

I just prefer more lumens and more throw which is what the K1 SBT90 2 gives you.
CarpentryHero
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Acebeam L19 has incredible throw for its size, thanks to the tir optic

I’m glad I’m not the only flashlight collector out there, I was beginning to think I was strange.
My name is Kendall and I’m a Flashaholic from western Canada

BurningPlayd0h
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All of these are far too big for me to consider any of them the “best” thrower for my uses. Something like an M21A would be the largest I’d ever go for a light that I actually wanted and expected to use regularly. Acebeam L17 (wish it used 21700…), Lumintop X9L and Convoy M21B w/WF2 have been some of my favorites recently.

twisted raven wrote:
Impractical in terms of everything. They get too hot past 30 seconds to hold, and they drain the battery life in no time— especially if just a single cell. Off single cells, the output of the SBT90 drops very quickly, down to less than half of its initial ~4800 lumen output within seconds to minutes.

The SBT90.2 is amazing for a minute of turbo burst, but beyond that, it has limited use in extended practicality.

Yeah, I can see the NI40 host handling heat decently in cold European winters, but you’re definitely not sustaining that 4800 lumen output doing so.

A minute or so of turbo burst is all I would expect or need from a light with that size:power ratio, just like how I view single-cell hotrod triple/quads/etc. that are pulling the same amount of power.

At reasonable currents SBT90.2 exceeds the output and efficiency of smaller emitters while still maintaining reasonable throw and having a very practical/versatile beam.

CarpentryHero
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Sadly only the Acebeam L18 and L19 are 21700, the two button ui is must better than the L17

I’m glad I’m not the only flashlight collector out there, I was beginning to think I was strange.
My name is Kendall and I’m a Flashaholic from western Canada

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GT Micro is a winner in that it is so small and “gram for gram” great throw. – so I voted “something else”

SP70 is one I have that is on the list. I think its two 26650s should disqualify it, but I really like it.

TS30S is one I have too but not on the list. Just a nice well made reasonably priced light.

zoulas
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I have the convoy and ft03, both excellent. For thrower, Osram rules.

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To me, “the best” is one that I’d actually carry and use. Love my original L2s, but haven’t taken ‘em from their boxes in, like, forever.

The GTmini/P30/C8whatevers are all similar in size and output, pocketable but that’s in a jacket pocket, really, unless you’re wearing Hammer pants.

The GTnano is ridiculously impractical with 3¼sec “turbo”, so I don’t even consider that.

So my choice would be the GTmicro, in that sweet spot of decent throw with decent and sustainable runtime. Still wouldn’t EDC it in a pocket with the big head, but it’s a great “wtf’s out there??” light you can grab in a jiffy and still go in a pocket at least for a short time.

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Artiet59
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Lightbringer wrote:
To me, “the best” is one that I’d actually carry and use. Love my original L2s, but haven’t taken ‘em from their boxes in, like, forever.

The GTmini/P30/C8whatevers are all similar in size and output, pocketable but that’s in a jacket pocket, really, unless you’re wearing Hammer pants.

The GTnano is ridiculously impractical with 3¼sec “turbo”, so I don’t even consider that.

So my choice would be the GTmicro, in that sweet spot of decent throw with decent and sustainable runtime. Still wouldn’t EDC it in a pocket with the big head, but it’s a great “wtf’s out there??” light you can grab in a jiffy and still go in a pocket at least for a short time.


i have to agree with the gt micro here. I wasnt expecting much when i ordered it recently, especially with the cslnm1 i thought itd have a pencil beam, but it beats out my KR1 (Great edc thrower, probably my favorite), probably because of the bigger head size, in throw and spill. the micro is a really impressive litttle light.

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The ‘micro almost universally attracts oohs and aahs when someone sees it. With its “reach”, people expect a bigger light, but when they see it, it’s almost always a “HS!!” moment. And it’s hella bright even when the battery’s down into the mid-3s after going a while.

So while of course it won’t have the runtime of an 18650 (or 21700) light, it’s sustainably bright, has decent runtime, and in a pinch, impresses the Hell outta people.

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Artiet59
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agreed. It is my favorite lumintop i own, followed closely by the X9l, but the brass really helps the micro take the #1 spot. just a Great designed & executed light. its in my top 10 list of the lights i own, definitely. And i definitely wasn’t expecting it to be when i ordered it on a whim.

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Obviously a broad question, but here’s my 2¢.

Thrower is a relative term. So I break them down into classes. I also have a general opinion on optic type per class/ use case.

EDC – like 365/365 kind of ‘E’:

This is a weird one, but the edc class for me has competing variables like NW and HiCRI. For me its the FW1A with SST20W 4000k in a narrow spot TIR. I’m getting around 22kcd in a ~11° fwhm ~25° total beam. No crazy lumen output but per watt my cd on target is awesome considering 95 CRI.

Next tier up is the the ‘ADIN’ (any day its needed) class Big Smile

Here there are a few that stand out. GT micro WF1, Convoy M2 WF1, modded ET TX25C2, KR1 WF2, and presumably the FF T1R.

In that class about 35mm head diameter is a cutoff and length below 140mm. These all will come in somewhere around 100kcd with Osrams, and can fit in any pants pocket and stay there all day if need be.

The small LEPs like TK30 and W10ii.

The ‘tactical’ class ranges from the 36-45mm and has so many competitive offerings I wouldn’t know where to start. Acebeam L17 for TIR, NM1 C8+ for budget king. X9L for 10second bursts. Another ‘toy’ in this class is the D4S with WF2, awesome but impractical for me.

46-55mm.. the awkward class. Too big to come with you easily, too small to make the effort worthwhile. But this is BLF, and we find a way top justify everything. GTmini Osram for side switch, P30-21700 modded for FC switch, B158B for zoomie (best in category imo), NI40 90.2 for searchlight duty. Maxtoch Archer M1 for a wildcard.

56-65mm. Ahh yess. The truest ‘thrower flashlight’ class imo. Here again its a crowded field. My favorites are the L19 and L2K short, in theory at least. T9R for a powerhouse/searchlight. I wish very strongly that more TIR optics enter this range.

Above this I think anything with a single cell is dumb. Reflectors should only be deep (near 1:1) and paired with big emitters like 90.2 or SST70 (soon the SFT70 and hopefully 50.3HI) for use as ‘searchlights’, anything with <6mm² LED should use an aspheric with a collar. LEPs cut into this realestate though, offering binocular range throw in more power and space efficient packages. .. Big emitters with a collar/aspheric would be awesome too, and might be the subject of my next scratch build.

Artiet59
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JaredM wrote:
Obviously a broad question, but here’s my 2¢.

Thrower is a relative term. So I break them down into classes. I also have a general opinion on optic type per class/ use case.

EDC – like 365/365 kind of ‘E’:

This is a weird one, but the edc class for me has competing variables like NW and HiCRI. For me its the FW1A with SST20W 4000k in a narrow spot TIR. I’m getting around 22kcd in a ~11° fwhm ~25° total beam. No crazy lumen output but per watt my cd on target is awesome considering 95 CRI.

Next tier up is the the ‘ADIN’ (any day its needed) class Big Smile

Here there are a few that stand out. GT micro WF1, Convoy M2 WF1, modded ET TX25C2, KR1 WF2, and presumably the FF T1R.

In that class about 35mm head diameter is a cutoff and length below 140mm. These all will come in somewhere around 100kcd with Osrams, and can fit in any pants pocket and stay there all day if need be.

The small LEPs like TK30 and W10ii.

The ‘tactical’ class ranges from the 36-45mm and has so many competitive offerings I wouldn’t know where to start. Acebeam L17 for TIR, NM1 C8+ for budget king. X9L for 10second bursts. Another ‘toy’ in this class is the D4S with WF2, awesome but impractical for me.

46-55mm.. the awkward class. Too big to come with you easily, too small to make the effort worthwhile. But this is BLF, and we find a way top justify everything. GTmini Osram for side switch, P30-21700 modded for FC switch, B158B for zoomie (best in category imo), NI40 90.2 for searchlight duty. Maxtoch Archer M1 for a wildcard.

56-65mm. Ahh yess. The truest ‘thrower flashlight’ class imo. Here again its a crowded field. My favorites are the L19 and L2K short, in theory at least. T9R for a powerhouse/searchlight. I wish very strongly that more TIR optics enter this range.

Above this I think anything with a single cell is dumb. Reflectors should only be deep (near 1:1) and paired with big emitters like 90.2 or SST70 (soon the SFT70 and hopefully 50.3HI) for use as ‘searchlights’, anything with

Ok, so this has been one of my favorite comments that I’ve seen since being in the forum. I really like your breakdown of “classes”, and I’ve learned something. I am defintely buying a Maxtoch Archer M1! I have never even seen that light! 100umens, 1100 meters with a sub50mm head?! awesome! And I have questions. What does aspheric with a collar mean?

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I personally can’t justify the price of Maxtoch’s lately, but simultaneously I think they’ve nailed the form factor, UI, and dimensions of most of their new lights. The new M1 with the FC tailswitch and mode selecting sideswitch with a ramping UI is nearly perfect IMO. It’s a dead simple ON OFF light when you need that, and flexible/modern with the side e-switch. They’ve always had top notch reflectors and good buck drivers. Never flashy but always solid. If it was 21700 it might set me over the edge on a weak day.

A ‘collar’ is referring to a Waiven Collar. It’s a hemispherical mirror/reflector that is placed ‘upsidedown’ over the LED and reflects or ‘recycles’ light back to the source, thereby taking light that would be wasted off to the sides and gives it another chance to escape in the forward direction. In the end, a properly tuned collar will double the lux and lumens OTF of an ashperic/zoomie lens. The reason that they aren’t popular is because Waiven Inc has patents on them and sells them for exorbitant prices and limited availability.

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For now, the only single cell thrower that I own is Pioneman L80 (sst40), using 26800 battery.
69.5mm reflector diameter x 55mm deep and 9mm hole.
Didn’t tested it yet on the field, but they (Pioneman) only claimed at 200-500m range. Strange.

Limited English, still working on it.

Artiet59
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PeyoX wrote:
p<>. For now, the only single cell thrower that I own is Pioneman L80 (sst40), using 26800 battery.
69.5mm reflector diameter x 55mm deep and 9mm hole.
Didn’t tested it yet on the field, but they (Pioneman) only claimed at 200-500m range. Strange.

Damn, the Pioneman L80 , another ligth company and model i have NEVER heard of. I agree that the 200m-500m estimate with a sst40 is strange. Looks like theyre running that sst40 at 6 amps (thats EQ to what simon’s drivers are for m21c, etc), and also the head diameter is 76mm! thats larger than the K1, which is larger than the FT03, and larger than the L21a. 500m throw must be an underestimate, unless the reflector is just.. well.. garbage. which i doesnt look like it is of coure.

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So I have very few throwers, and I have to say I just ordered a FT03 with a SBT90.2 I will see how it performs.

I was not aware there is a thermal issue with this emitter, when using it. I do not have any other lights that have this emitter, this and the cost of most lights that sport this emitter tends to go over $100 USD. I have my I rarely spend over amount. Yes it is a very arbitrary amount, with the FT03 Dipping under that amount with a coupon I sprung for it. (I do have the other 2 emitter options in this light, so I will see… LoL).

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strayz wrote:
So I have very few throwers, and I have to say I just ordered a FT03 with a SBT90.2 I will see how it performs.

I was not aware there is a thermal issue with this emitter, when using it. I do not have any other lights that have this emitter, this and the cost of most lights that sport this emitter tends to go over $100 USD. I have my I rarely spend over amount. Yes it is a very arbitrary amount, with the FT03 Dipping under that amount with a coupon I sprung for it. (I do have the other 2 emitter options in this light, so I will see… LoL).

u should have got the ft03 with sst40 emitter instead, u can run turbo way longer then sbt90.2 which will heat up fast probably.

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Artiet59
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strayz wrote:
So I have very few throwers, and I have to say I just ordered a FT03 with a SBT90.2 I will see how it performs.

I was not aware there is a thermal issue with this emitter, when using it. I do not have any other lights that have this emitter, this and the cost of most lights that sport this emitter tends to go over $100 USD. I have my I rarely spend over amount. Yes it is a very arbitrary amount, with the FT03 Dipping under that amount with a coupon I sprung for it. (I do have the other 2 emitter options in this light, so I will see… LoL).


I had it for awhile and just sold it. I loved that light, it was my second sbt90.2 light, but my first mid size as i only had the X9L before it. I think youll be imprssed, imagine a bump in throw over your sst40 ft03, but with the xhp50’s output. It gets hot, but unlike your other two it has Anduril. just MAKE SURE you setup you parameters when you get it (set temp, set temp cutoff) and it will be awesome. mine was!

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Looks like by looking at the chart now, one can see who ordered which flashlight for themselves kinda. Interesting Big Smile

strayz
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mortuus wrote:
strayz wrote:
So I have very few throwers, and I have to say I just ordered a FT03 with a SBT90.2 I will see how it performs.

I was not aware there is a thermal issue with this emitter, when using it. I do not have any other lights that have this emitter, this and the cost of most lights that sport this emitter tends to go over $100 USD. I have my I rarely spend over amount. Yes it is a very arbitrary amount, with the FT03 Dipping under that amount with a coupon I sprung for it. (I do have the other 2 emitter options in this light, so I will see… LoL).

u should have got the ft03 with sst40 emitter instead, u can run turbo way longer then sbt90.2 which will heat up fast probably.

So I already have one. Just looking at the more throw as I like what Astrolux has been doing for the last 2 years.