A Comparison Review: Randar 813 (XML Zoom), Romisen RC-39 (TIR Zoom), NF-500 and X2000 (XR-E Zoom)

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Kokopelli
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A Comparison Review: Randar 813 (XML Zoom), Romisen RC-39 (TIR Zoom), NF-500 and X2000 (XR-E Zoom)

 

Randar 813 (XML Zoom), Romisen RC-39 (TIR Zoom), NF-500 and X2000 (XR-E Zoom) Comparison

Being almost the first owner of some exotic flashlights, I had to make a small review of some flashlight I recently got. Here I will try to give an idea for a stock XML Zoom, a TIR Zoom and how they compare to some other well known XR-E Zoom lights.

Bought Randar from taobao.com using one of the agents, choobuy.com to route the package to my address. Total expenses: ~$22 + domestic shipping + agent fee + International Shipping = $33.5

Romisen RC-39 is for $18.50, X2000 is for $12.56 from DealExtreme.

NF-500 is for $11.29 from KaiDomain.

A size comparison:

Zoom Comparison

Next to some others

Features:

Romisen RC-39

RC-39 TIR Optics

RC-39 Tailcap and Driver 

Romisen RC-39 is a 5 Mode flashlight, with 3 brightness modes, one strobe and one SOS mode. It has a wide zooming head with TIR optics and this brings somewhat different beam profiles than zoomies with aspheric lenses. This design is rated highly due to its reflector plus lens behaviour and said to be more efficient than lens only zoom lights. It is indeed seems to be brighter than a similarly driven light (NF-500 in this case) especially at the throw end. The beam is pure flood and pure throw (no emitter image) at both ends, on the other hand, a more useful but ugly beam at the midrange.

The emitter is a XR-E Q5.

Randar 813

Randar Optics

Randar Driver and Tailcap 

Randar is a multi group, multi mode flashlight, with a 3 mode no-strobe group and a bigger strobe heavy another group. The group switching is made at the low brightness setting by switching off the light just after the light blinks once. It has a smaller, know body shape with aspheric lens. The flood end is pure and bright, while the throw end is the usual emitter image, but with six bars because of the bigger XML power LED.

The emitter is a XM-L T6.

NF-500

NF-500

NF-500 Driver and Tail 

NF-500 is more of a conventional Zoom flashlight, with XR-E Q5 emitter. This light has three modes, high, low and strobe. Due to its XR-E emitter, the beam image at the throw end is tighter than Randar’s, with 3 bars of this emitter. Flood is smooth but of course less brighter.

The emitter is a XR-E Q5.

X2000 CR123

x2000 Optics

X2000 Tailcap And Driver 

X2000 used in this comparison is the CR123 version of this famous family and has only one mode. It’s emitter is again an XR-E like NF-500 so the beams are very similar. X2000, on the other hand is driven harder than NF-500, so the results are brighter than this light. X2000 is the shortest of the lights due to its half sized CR123 battery. But since the barrel width is shared with other X2000s with different battery configurations, it is pretty wide for a CR123 flashlight, and needs a spacer to hold the battery in the middle.

The emitter is a XR-E but I don’t know the bin. May be Q5.

Build quality:

Tail threads 

Among the four zoom lenses in this review, Romisen has the toughest and the best built body. It is bigger than the others and when you open the tailcap, you see the impressive material thickness of the barrel. Again, Romisen’s anodization is the best with even its threads are anodized, but you can still see some aluminum showing on the threads. Talking of the threads, Randar’s threads don’t give much confidence as it has pretty fewer threads on the tail side. Randar’s tail switch is held in the cap only with friction so it can easily drop inside if pushed hard with no batteries in the light, which drops another star from the build quality of Randar.

The only light tailstanding is X2000 , at least for my samples.

Randar’s zoom head is the tightest of these four and may need a second hand to pull or push the head. For the others, Romisen and X2000 has just the right friction while NF-500 may be felt a bit on the loose side which isn’t severe to the point of changing the zoom by itself.

Performance:

Current Readings with my new digital multimeter ( VC-98) and its stock cords are as follows. The odd thing is, although this DMM and leads were rated highly, I could measure only 1.9 A for my DIY C2 light with 8xAMC7135 driver, which was rated at 2800mA on high. It may still be the stock leads causing this. The flame black Trustfire 18650 batteries I used should have easily pumped out 3A. So read this chart accordingly, you may measure even higher than these.

I know many would ask how such amperage in a zoom lens would act and I tried Randar for a 10mins run at the highest setting. The light gets warm overall in 5 mins and this becomes just too hot to hurt a hand in 10 mins. The light seems to transfer the heat all over the body quickly but since there is just too little material to compensate the heat, I still wouldn’t keep it on at the highest setting for too long.

 

 

High

Mid

Low

Romisen RC-39

850mA

570mA

290mA 

Randar 813

2000mA 

690mA 

155mA 

X2000 CR123

1200mA

 

 

NF-500

670mA 

 

150mA 

 

 

THROW End

FLOOD End

Romisen RC-39

 

 Romisen RC-39 ThrowRomisen RC-39 Flood 

Randar 813

 

 Randar ThrowRandar Flood 

X2000 CR123

 

 X2000 ThrowX2000 Flood 

 

Taken with settings, ISO 400, f:6.3 1/50s, Nikon D70, 18-70mm lens @ 24mm focal length. Didn’t bother putting beamshots for NF-500  as it is almost the same as X2000 but a bit darker. Well I took some in another setup but not in this.

 

Throw compared to some other (EDC) lights, at the highest brightness settings for all:

Maglite XL100Fenix E10Tank007 E07ITP EOS A3 R5 Upgrade
XL100Fenix E10E07ITP EOS A3 R5
Randar 813
Throw End
Randar 813
Midrange
Romisen RC-39
Throw End
DIY C2 XML
Randar 813 ThrowRandar 813 MidrangeRomisen RC-39C2 XML

Please note that these shots are taken with a brighter setting: ISO 500, F:5.6, 1/40s, @24mm

 

My conclusion:

Randar is a nice pocket blaster for its size, with a useful flood and mid range, though with a bit useless throw end. The build quality is decent but some points, like the tailswitch may need some work to make it better.

Romisen RC-39, on the other hand is a very nicely built one. Being my first TIR zoom, I found its zoom action more useful and more efficient than convex lens ones. Although its current is low, taking thinking of this as longer runtime could make a plus also. The light isn’t much friendly to DIY and the current must be limited due to its emitter-on-a-rod designs bad heatsinking.

For the rest, I always preferred zoom flashlights as nice light saber toys, with their almost non existing spill at the throw end. In real life this is kind of useless unless you really try to point out some place further or throw far signals. Would like a brightness setting in this case but still the light loss in the lens should be considered if talking on a EDC light.

All in all, I would buy or build an XM-L Zoom Light anyway so I don’t regret having Randar 813, especially to show off. But having a reliable TIR Zoomie like Romisen or a genuine Led Lenser makes more sense if I would buy one and use it for everything.

_

I’ll try to update this thread with some outside pictures if I can. Thanks for watching.

_

Seckin

 

 

 

Edited by: sb56637 on 08/26/2014 - 17:22 Reason: sb56637 replaced budgetlightforum.cz.cc with budgetlightforum.com via Scanner Search and Replace module.
jacktheclipper
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Thanks

Smile

What I do

 

cessnapilot
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Nice Flood on the XML Randar.  I really like the romisen but too bad about the emmitter on post design that probably won't allow more than 1000ma heatsinking.  Im still thinking about ordering it though.  Good work!

Kokopelli
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I still find reflector based optics better in terms of directing a strong beam of light to a distance. As a side interest, I have plenty of camera lenses, in different focal lengths and formulations. That area has showed me that the more medium (number of lenses) the light passes through, the more it gets dimmer. And like this rula, the narrower the aperture is, less light passes through. These aspheric lens based zoom flashlights really looses much light in internal reflections, trim the light with their thick and narrow optics and I feel guilty using them. But TIR zoomies seem to reflect a wider angle of the emitter output to the front. It does not put out as narrow beam as aspheric ones but I never needed that narrow light anyway.

Haggai
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Great comparison, Kokopelli!

Glad I could help with the Randar Wink

 

I would love to see outdoor shots.

I think the real power of the throw end of the lights can only be appreciated at long range, where it lights an area that is close to what it does at close range in flood mode.

 

What can you tell about the difference of the Randar lens from that of the X2000?

 

(p.s. the cr123 x2000 looks so funny Smile )

cessnapilot
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Haggai wrote:

I think the real power of the throw end of the lights can only be appreciated at long range, where it lights an area that is close to what it does at close range in flood mode.

 

My NF-500 (similar)  throws a beam on the condominum over 620 meters away, granted it is faint but you can tell there is light there!  Really more of a showing off thing but it still is really cool. 

Aleister
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Great job Kokopelli, very informative review!

Let a flooder be my wife and a thrower be my mistress

Kokopelli
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Thanks for all these warm comments.

I know throwers whould be throws outside. These door shots were at most 4-5m. I hope I can find the time to go out and try these lights at an open area. I just need to recharge the batteries, gather all the camera, tripod etc. and find a good target range. But I spent this night to build the review so I'll need a couple of nights to make this photoshoot. I don't want to point them to nearby neighbor houses anymore, or someone will come to my door one day, with a baseball bat I fear. Smile 

I can still fire them to 15-20m ranges without problem, from 3rd floor to the trunk of the tree nearby. Still not a range measure but tell me if you're interested.

Kokopelli
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Haggai wrote:

Great comparison, Kokopelli!

Glad I could help with the Randar Wink

 

I would love to see outdoor shots.

I think the real power of the throw end of the lights can only be appreciated at long range, where it lights an area that is close to what it does at close range in flood mode.

 

What can you tell about the difference of the Randar lens from that of the X2000?

 

(p.s. the cr123 x2000 looks so funny Smile )

There is not much difference between the aspheric lenses. None of them are glass. I just tried NF-500 and X2000 side by side and I can say X2000 was a bit better focused. The emitter image was brighter (due to higher current) and sharper.

X2000 is my first flashlight along with a Romisen 2xAA. It still amazes me with simply the powerful beam from sunch a short size. Pity it uses the same barrel as the 3xAAA version and hence the ugly, fat form. It can tailtand perfectly though.

sb56637
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Very nice review, and great photography! Thanks for the informative comparison.

Frontpage'd and Sticky'd.

Budget Light Forum ...where Frugal meets with Flashlight!

fishinfool
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Great job Kokopelli! 

 

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

wendy
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I get a wholesale supplier it is: www.sz-eyoung.cn.there have more hundred of flashlight,may be you can visit it to find what you need.the price is really good.

Haggai
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wendy wrote:

I get a wholesale supplier it is: www.sz-eyoung.cn.there have more hundred of flashlight,may be you can visit it to find what you need.the price is really good.

Wendy, welcome to the forum.

Maybe you would like to introduce yourself and your ware at the dealer's subforum - http://budgetlightforum.cz.cc/forum/marketplace/commercial

 

When will your bestinone.net site be back to full operation?

It's much easier to order from there, rather than from alibaba/aliexpress.

Kiko
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Hi Haggai,

I guessed Wendy was forced to leave there since she spamed here Laughing
www.bestinone.net is fixing now (they hope it will be more easy and quickly for you) since it is very slowly when you ordered (and somes works not good ) , it will come out after 1 week or so, you can order items from www.powerwholesale.net if you need order some items urgently.

wendyHo
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Hi Haggai,I'm here.kiko said you can visit powerwholesale(dot)net.thank you like our web.Laughing

WendyHo Smile

wendy(at)sz-eyoung(dot)com

welcome contact me

SyperAlex
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Hello Kokopelli,

 Me very much interests there is a free space under the lantern diode

NF-500 is for $11.29 from KaiDomain.

I want to order it and put to  XM-L diode

Thanks!

Alexander.

cessnapilot
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Alexander this is a great question.  I also would really like to know this also.  Anyone know if there is a name of the metal "space" that the emitter is mounted on? 

moviles2
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ty for the pictures

 

pictures of the dropin of the romisen and the radar? diameter of the romisen lens?

 

SyperAlex wrote:

 

NF-500 is for $11.29 from KaiDomain.

I want to order it and put to  XM-L diode

 

 

the nf500 have auminiun under the star? pictures of the dropin?

Kokopelli
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Oh, I'm afraid I missed the question and haven't tried it yet. I wouldn't want to dismantle my Randar this soon either. I sold my NF500 so there is no turning back to open it up. Sorry. 

yohandsome
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Does the Romisen have a tactical on off function?

Flashlight noob