Are Standard 5-mode Flashlight Drivers Appealing At All Anymore?

30 posts / 0 new
Last post
Rusty Joe
Rusty Joe's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 hours 58 min ago
Joined: 07/24/2011 - 00:22
Posts: 3787
Location: Houston, TX
Are Standard 5-mode Flashlight Drivers Appealing At All Anymore?
Yes, high, medium, low, strobe, and SOS is generally useful, if not perfect for me.
20% (8 votes)
No, another flashlight driver is desired (please specify in post).
80% (32 votes)
Total votes: 40
quahog
Offline
Last seen: 19 hours 49 min ago
Joined: 02/11/2021 - 17:10
Posts: 46
Location: Canada

Sure, five modes is OK with me: moon, low, med, high, turbo (e.g. Convoy group 2)

Stobe and SOS no thanks, unless well hidden.

Quadrupel
Quadrupel's picture
Offline
Last seen: 19 hours 57 min ago
Joined: 12/03/2017 - 10:40
Posts: 990
Location: Lithuania

5 main modes … 2 moonlights and turbo .

SammysHP
SammysHP's picture
Online
Last seen: 11 min 23 sec ago
Joined: 06/25/2019 - 14:35
Posts: 1342
Location: Germany

On/off and smooth ramping would be enough. Direct access to moon and turbo would be great.

jeff51
jeff51's picture
Offline
Last seen: 19 hours 28 min ago
Joined: 03/26/2019 - 17:36
Posts: 1527
Location: Middle of Texas

When the only option is High medium low strobe SOS – Off.
I hate that.
If it could be low med high. Then go to off from any mode. That would be fine for many lights.
Always starting in low is my preference so I won’t blast the world with max lumens.
All The Best,
Jeff

Greg_M
Offline
Last seen: 7 hours 33 min ago
Joined: 03/09/2017 - 09:46
Posts: 39
Location: B.C. Canada

My favourite is still the old mechanical Malkoff twist head for hi/low, tail switch for on/off. When pocketing my FW3A by comparison, it usually turns on, drains the battery, and cooks my leg.

Mandrake50
Offline
Last seen: 12 hours 42 min ago
Joined: 03/01/2022 - 20:02
Posts: 76
Location: United States

It depends on the light I guess. I like a 3 mode twisty for small (AAA/AA) pocket lights. Starting at low makes these even better! But I have to say I have come to really like carrying my Sofirn SP10 Pro (Andruil 2).
For larger lights something like the Conoy 12 group, Group 2. is serviceable, but not my favorite. I do not like any UI that forces me to cycle through strobe and SOS to go from high to low.
Mode memory is something I like, especially manual memory so the light always comes on at my preferred brightness.
So my favorite now is Andruil, preferably Andruil 2. It is a bit complex, but normally I set up a light once and pretty much leave it that way. Once that is done, Andruil is really quite easy to use. I really like easy shortcuts to Turbo, low ramp and strobe modes.
Yes, I do still need the manual open if I need to make many of the changes. But the things I do regularly, I have memorized.

Sirstinky
Offline
Last seen: 7 hours 59 min ago
Joined: 11/02/2018 - 17:07
Posts: 1590
Location: Vancouver, WA

5 modes is fine. Must be well spaced though and blinkies well hidden!

wle
wle's picture
Offline
Last seen: 16 hours 56 min ago
Joined: 01/07/2015 - 13:49
Posts: 2936
Location: atlanta ga

I don;t like them, but if i was looking for cheap , i would be able to stand it

i like anduril

or biscotti

something with at least 5 nicely spaced levels, including a moonlight, and either no mode memory or selectable memory

strobe and SOS only annoy, esp if [like hte cheap ones usually are] they are in the rotation between turbo and moonlight

"You never have the wind with you - it's either against you, or you're having a good day."
    Daniel Behrman, "The Man Who Loved Bicycles".
It never gets easy, you just go faster.   
-Greg Lemond.
       ,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸

raccoon city
raccoon city's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 hour 6 min ago
Joined: 10/06/2010 - 02:35
Posts: 18872
Location: Palm Desert CA ~ West Coast is the best coast

I can't stand disco modes.

It's 2022--way past time to ditch high-medium-low-strobe-SOS.  :-)

JenkinsMatti
Offline
Last seen: 1 day 17 hours ago
Joined: 08/23/2021 - 18:26
Posts: 360

They have their place.

I like the Convoy 12 Group setting #10 which is L. M. H, Turbo
Off from any level & memory.

Havok
Offline
Last seen: 1 week 1 day ago
Joined: 08/02/2020 - 20:41
Posts: 39
Location: Kansas City

Five modes is fine, as long as their useful.. say, Moonlight, Low, Medium, High, and Turbo.

Strobe, and S.O.S. belong on infomercials.

CollectEverything
CollectEverything's picture
Offline
Last seen: 12 hours 18 min ago
Joined: 07/17/2021 - 00:19
Posts: 821
Location: USA

I said “No” mainly because I just don’t agree with the mode spacing on some lights. You can’t please everyone with a set spacing so something else would be ideal. (Ramping is nice but some prefer the option to have set modes with predictable run-times.) The ability to choose is best.

My Catapult V6 has has this mode spacing:
Turbo: 1700
High: 950
Medium: 180
Low: 22

For me, this Medium is not Medium. 400-300 lumens would be Medium. Medium and Low here are just Low and Lower.

My perfect UI would similar to Anduril 1. I’m not sure if it’s currently possible to implement it but here is what I’d like added:

I’d like a PC or Mobile application that would allow me to rearrange modes that appear in the same group, or remove them from the group entirely. The modes would be represented by GUI elements you could drag and drop. I’d also like the GUI to have a way of setting the stepped modes via text box or by dragging sliders. My vision is that the program would edit the firmware/config file and that after flashing these files to your light you would not need to configure it further.

------------------

My Collection

------------------

manithree
manithree's picture
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 50 min ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 01:08
Posts: 715
Location: Orem, UT, USA

Not a big fan of the blinkies being in the main rotation, especially when there’s not bike strobe. That’s the only useful strobe mode to me.

I like Narsil, Andúril, BLF A6, Biscotti, and Simon’s new biscotti clone.

Rusty Joe
Rusty Joe's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 hours 58 min ago
Joined: 07/24/2011 - 00:22
Posts: 3787
Location: Houston, TX
Greg_M wrote:
My favourite is still the old mechanical Malkoff twist head for hi/low, tail switch for on/off. When pocketing my FW3A by comparison, it usually turns on, drains the battery, and cooks my leg.

See, I used to hate them, but damned if they didn’t solve the “cook your pocket” problem!

manithree
manithree's picture
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 50 min ago
Joined: 01/12/2013 - 01:08
Posts: 715
Location: Orem, UT, USA
Rusty Joe wrote:
See, I used to hate them, but damned if they didn’t solve the “cook your pocket” problem!

Solving the “cook your pocket” problem and stupid blinky modes are 2 entirely different things.

Sk9
Offline
Last seen: 9 hours 30 min ago
Joined: 02/08/2022 - 13:29
Posts: 23
Location: Canada

Greg_M wrote:
My favourite is still the old mechanical Malkoff twist head for hi/low, tail switch for on/off. When pocketing my FW3A by comparison, it usually turns on, drains the battery, and cooks my leg.

The switch o-ring mod is super easy and tunable.
Rayoui
Rayoui's picture
Offline
Last seen: 12 hours 49 min ago
Joined: 08/06/2019 - 00:38
Posts: 691
Location: Portland, OR

For my mechanical switch lights, I like a simple 5-mode UI, provided the lowest mode is sufficiently low and the mode spacing is good. I don’t care for blinkies.

I still use the OG Convoy 8×7135 Biscotti drivers without thermal protection all the time. Simple, functional and extremely reliable.

wle
wle's picture
Offline
Last seen: 16 hours 56 min ago
Joined: 01/07/2015 - 13:49
Posts: 2936
Location: atlanta ga

sounds good to a newbie i guess

5 modes
party down

whoo hoo

"You never have the wind with you - it's either against you, or you're having a good day."
    Daniel Behrman, "The Man Who Loved Bicycles".
It never gets easy, you just go faster.   
-Greg Lemond.
       ,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸

wle
wle's picture
Offline
Last seen: 16 hours 56 min ago
Joined: 01/07/2015 - 13:49
Posts: 2936
Location: atlanta ga
Rusty Joe wrote:
Greg_M wrote:
My favourite is still the old mechanical Malkoff twist head for hi/low, tail switch for on/off. When pocketing my FW3A by comparison, it usually turns on, drains the battery, and cooks my leg.

See, I used to hate them, but damned if they didn’t solve the “cook your pocket” problem!

pocket cooking, is not related to the 5 mode issue

"You never have the wind with you - it's either against you, or you're having a good day."
    Daniel Behrman, "The Man Who Loved Bicycles".
It never gets easy, you just go faster.   
-Greg Lemond.
       ,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸,ø¤º°`°º¤ø¸

Rusty Joe
Rusty Joe's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 hours 58 min ago
Joined: 07/24/2011 - 00:22
Posts: 3787
Location: Houston, TX
wle wrote:
Rusty Joe wrote:
Greg_M wrote:
My favourite is still the old mechanical Malkoff twist head for hi/low, tail switch for on/off. When pocketing my FW3A by comparison, it usually turns on, drains the battery, and cooks my leg.

See, I used to hate them, but damned if they didn’t solve the “cook your pocket” problem!

pocket cooking, is not related to the 5 mode issue

I hated them for the inconvenience of the stop-and-use-two-hands-to-twist. My connecting that amounted to a parenthetical thought.

Rusty Joe
Rusty Joe's picture
Offline
Last seen: 6 hours 58 min ago
Joined: 07/24/2011 - 00:22
Posts: 3787
Location: Houston, TX

To be clear, I can totally work with a standard five mode—if for no other reason than that they are practical and marketable to non-flashies. I guess they are niftily equipped, some might say. Just ordered some more budget torches with five modes. And it got me thinking.

Lightbringer
Lightbringer's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 hours 20 min ago
Joined: 08/30/2016 - 14:12
Posts: 17117
Location: nyc

Hey, I still got (and use) 1-mode on/off lights. Just 7135s, not even a µC.

My GTmicro is usually on momentary mode (ie, 100%) for what I use it for.

Got other lights that are just low-high, usually twisties.

Not all lights need an operating system.

09 F9 11 02 9D 74 E3 5B D8 41 56 C5 63 56 88 C0

buck91
buck91's picture
Offline
Last seen: 11 hours 27 min ago
Joined: 07/29/2016 - 08:21
Posts: 767
Location: Michigan

Never were…

jeff51
jeff51's picture
Offline
Last seen: 19 hours 28 min ago
Joined: 03/26/2019 - 17:36
Posts: 1527
Location: Middle of Texas

The LT1S has a nice interface.
Press and hold for moon.
Click to go to last used mode. Click to go off.
Press and hold to cycle brightness.
Red and 2 red blinkies slightly hidden.
Slightly hidden – turn off 180 degrees of LEDs – this is stored in memory till you turn it off.
Slightly hidden – cycle color Temp.
All the Best,
Jeff

JenkinsMatti
Offline
Last seen: 1 day 17 hours ago
Joined: 08/23/2021 - 18:26
Posts: 360

Sk9 wrote:
Greg_M wrote:
My favourite is still the old mechanical Malkoff twist head for hi/low, tail switch for on/off. When pocketing my FW3A by comparison, it usually turns on, drains the battery, and cooks my leg.

The switch o-ring mod is super easy and tunable.
Have you got a link to that mod??
It sound interesting.
TIA Beer
Greg_M
Offline
Last seen: 7 hours 33 min ago
Joined: 03/09/2017 - 09:46
Posts: 39
Location: B.C. Canada

If I’m in the drawer at all I must be a spoon. Had to look that up.

Greg_M
Offline
Last seen: 7 hours 33 min ago
Joined: 03/09/2017 - 09:46
Posts: 39
Location: B.C. Canada

“parenthetical” that is

stephenk
stephenk's picture
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 38 min ago
Joined: 01/30/2016 - 05:09
Posts: 2178
Location: Australia

Light painting photographers like lights with memorised (constant frequency) strobe modes. Unfortunately these are becoming a rarity.

bobvoeh
bobvoeh's picture
Offline
Last seen: 8 hours 18 min ago
Joined: 09/21/2021 - 23:29
Posts: 266
Location: Florida, United States

My Nitecore lights have 5 brightness levels and 3 strobe levels. I never used the strobes and the 5 levels used to be fine for me. Then I got my first Emisar with Anduril 2. Now I’m spoiled, I love a ramping UI. Even the Convoy S2+ lights I’ve built have Crescendo for the firmware because of the ramping. I figure, if I can have a dimmer on every light in the house, why not on my portable lights?