LEDs & Other Stuff - (Reference Guide)

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CRX's picture
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LEDs & Other Stuff - (Reference Guide)

Summarised here is information taken from different resources about LEDs, drivers, batteries, chargers & various other flashlight related stuff condensed as a useful guide with external links to more information.
This post is very image heavy and may take some time to fully load….
Flashlight Basics
Flashlight Terminology
LED Names Guide
(Some common LED emitters used in flashlights)

LED Size Comparison Guide
(How the LEDs compare in size to each other)

LED Basics
Flashlight Wiki
LED Close Ups
LED Comparisons
The Fake-Cree LED Awareness Thread
LED Brightness Bins Measured in Lumens at Different Currents
(LEDs are “binned” according to their efficiency, brightness & performance at different currents)

Cree Brightness Bins
Various LED Brightness Bins
Older LED Bin Coding Charts

LED Calaculator
Cree Product Characterization Tool
Cree Press Releases of New LED’s
LED Chip Dimensions, Forward Voltages & Junction Temperatures
(Technical data relating to physical dimensions and operational characteristics of LEDs)

Cree XLamp Datasheet Downloads
Cree XLamp Package Sizes
Match’s LED Test Data
Djozz Crash Testing LEDs
(Tests by BLF member Djozz using different emitters, heatsinks & power levels)
For full details & discussion on the tests, follow the appropriate link below

All Djozz Tests
Koef3 LED Tests
(Tests by BLF member koef3 using different emitters, heatsinks & power levels)
For full details & discussion on the tests, follow the appropriate link below

koef3 LED Tests
Texas_Ace LED Tests
(Tests by BLF member Texas_Ace using different emitters, heatsinks & power levels)
For full details & discussion on the tests, follow the appropriate link below

Texas_Ace Threads
Texas_Ace LED Comparator
LED Colour Temperature & Tints
(Determined by the thickness & composition of the yellow phosphors layer covering the LED die)
(Less = “cooler” more bluish light, More = “warmer” more yellowish light)

About LED Light
Phosphor Film Conversion for White LEDs
Colour Temperature Reference Chart
(This chart shows an explanation of the numbers 1A, 2B, 3C etc)

Colour Temperature
Lets Talk Tints
Solar Spectrum
The Visible Spectrum
Kruithof Curve
Colour Rendering Index
Planckian/ Black Body Locus
DC-Fix Diffusion Film
Tint, Binning & CRI Explained
Various Light Sources on Colour Checker Cards
CRI vs Alternatives with Measurement Examples
Color Rendering Definition, Does CCT Play a Role?
Using your Smartphone as a Luxmeter
Mired Colour Temperature
Approximating Colour Temperature with Smartphones & Camera
Maukka LED Output Tests & Reviews
Why do you buy Lights without High-CRI Emitters? .

Additive Colour Subtractive Colour
R9 Colour Rendering Value
UV Lighting

Djozz UV Emitter Tests
Simple Testing of UV Emitter Quality

UV Light Shootout
UV Flashlight Roundup 2018
LED Die Colour vs Tint
Lighting For UV Macro
UV Light for Amber Searching
UV LED Tests
ZWB2 2mm – Visible Light Blocking Filter for 365nm UV Flashlights

Tritium Isotopes

Tritium on Flashlights
Tritium BLF Search
Tritium Wiki
Tritium Illumination
Tritium and the Environment
What gives Tritium it’s different Colours?
More Information About LEDs

A Perfect De-dome
De doming – What does it do?
De-doming Method with 100% Success
What is the Best way to De-dome an LED?
De-doming with the Emitter Still in the Light
How many De-domed Emitters have you Fried?
Triple XP-L with Carlco – De-dome or not?

XM-L2 Best Tints?
Tint Mixing, Improving De-domed Emitters
De-doming – Illustrations for Colour Changes
Lightbox, XML-2, and some Extreme Numbers
Serious Problem with XM-L2 Current. Is this happening to you?

Reflowing onto a Triple PCB
Reflowing on a Glass Ceramic Cooktop
Reflowing with a Butane Jet Flame
How to Reflow solder an LED emitter on a MCPCB
Made a new Tiny Heatblock for Reflow Soldering

LED Current Calculator
Cree Product Characterization Tool
Need a bit of Help Understanding VF and Amps
Power Conservation Analysis of Linear & PWM Regulation Methods
Lens Types, Optics, Reflectors & Parts
(Some common optics & parts used in flashlights)

Lens & Optics Basics
Anti-Reflective Coating
How Lens Coating Works
TIR – Total Internal Reflection
The Optimal Lens for use in Thrower Flashlights
Light Loss in TIR & Reflectors
Reflector Width vs Depth
Zoom vs Reflector Lights
Aspheric Lens Theory and Application
Light Lost in Aspheric Lens Flashlight
Flashlight Optics – Dome, De-doming and Throw
Djozz Ongoing Project: Reflector Testing
Would someone please School me on Throw please?
Light Measurements Explained
Zoomie without Square Beam?
Optics (TIRs) Comparison Beamshots
DIY Wavien Collar
Making a Reflective Ring by Silver Deposition
Reflectors Cleaning

Understanding the Inverse-Square Law of Light

Lumens, Lux – Calculator
Lux, Candela – Proper Terminology
Calculating Relative Throw & Flood
Luxmeters: Thoughts, Findings, Comparison

Future Development of the Maximum Luminance of LEDs
The Proper way of Calculating lux/ cd/ candlepower
Reflector Size Calculations
Light Collimation with an LED Flashlight
Advanced Calculators for Theoretical Lumens, lux, Beam Divergence
The Optimal Lens for use in Thrower Flashlights

Pills, P60’s & MCPCB Types
(The Pill houses the LED Driver and the Metal Core Printed Circuit Board (MCPCB) to which the LED is soldered)
(Different types & materials used in flashlights)

Solid Pill Vs Hollow Pill
Aluminium Pill vs Copper Pill

Copper Mounted LED’s
About Noctigon MCPCB’s – 1, 2

XM-L MCPCB Comparison Testing
Copper MCPCB Thermal Pathway Mods – 1, 2, 3

P60 Drop-In Modules
P60 DIY Drop-In Modules
P60 Hosts – What’s Wrong with Them?
P60 Drop-In Round-Up and XM-L Shootout
P60 Drop-In Alternative to Foil Wrapping – Thermal Silicone
P60 Thermal Test Wrap Materials & Resulting Temperatures
Has anyone Converted their P60s
Noctigon MCPCB mod for P60 setups
Choosing O-Rings Based on Material Makeup

Soldering Wires to a Star, a Little Differently?
Soldering Emitters Directly to Copper Wires?
An Unorthodox Way to Solder a Wire to an MCPCB
How To Solder: Copper Pills, LED, Drivers & Other Equipment
Physical and Mechanical Properties of Solder Alloys
LED & MCPCB Thermal Pathways
(Direct vs Non Direct Thermal Path heat transference from LED thermal pad to MCPCB)

Noctigon Wiring Setups & Optics

LED Heat Generation
ESP Heatsink Design
Thermal Management of High-Power LEDs
Thermal Paste
Thermal Paste vs. Graphite Thermal Pad
Just how Important is Thermal Paste?
Thermal Conductivity of Solder
Thermal Conductivity of some Common Materials
Fillers for JB Weld or AA
Potting Solutions – Potting Hints
High Performance Potting Epoxy
What’s the best Thermal Compound?
Potting Drivers – Budget Reversable Option?
Best Thermal Paste According to Independent Studies?
Potting & Heatsinking with Epoxy & Silicone Carbide Powder
Soldering a MCPCB vs Thermal Adhesive Test Results
Deconstructing a Flashlight
ANSI Specs & IP Ratings
(These standards are meant to help end users compare performance & features of products)

International Protection Marking
LED Drivers
(Regulate the different modes & control the power to the LED)

Driver Basics
Popular Drivers
Understanding Linear, Buck, Boost & Direct Drive Drivers
Flashlight User Interfaces – CheatSheets

Qlite 8×7135 AMC chip based Driver Review
7135 chips – Answered
Anatomy of a 7135 Driver Board
Stacking AMC 7135 chips – Impossible?
How to add 7135 chips to a Driver Board
Modding Qlite 7135 to Drive MT-G2
A More Efficient Driver?
Using QTC as Direct Load Control in Flashlights

Buck Converter
Buck–Boost Converter
Switched-Mode Power Supply
Single-Ended Primary-Inductor Converter
Joule Thief
DC-DC Converter Tutorial

Duty Cycle
What is PWM & How to Detect it
Phase Correct PWM
Phase-Correct vs Fast-PWM – Scope Images

What is Meant Exactly by the term Direct Drive?
Explain to me the use of Next Mode Memory
Solution for Next Mode Memory Drivers

How LEDs are Adapted for Different Battery Voltages
HKJ Driver Reviews
AquaLab LED Drivers List

How to Build a Flashlight with Perfect Modes
Guide: How to Flash a NANJG / Qlite driver with Custom Firmware
ATtiny Starter Code
Programming AVR Drivers
ATtiny13A Datasheet Downloads
Atmel AVR ATtiny Comparison Chart
Attiny25/45/85 FW Development Thread
How to Use Atmel AVR Studio 5 to make a .hex file
How to Flash ATtiny with AVRDude & Command Prompt
OSH Park Driver Projects
Eagle Libraries
PIC Quickstart Guide
What Programmer to Buy?
Eagle Video Tutorials – BLF Style
PIC 10F322 Basic Flashlight Firmware
How to Build a SOIC Programming Clip
Off-Time Mode Switching for Stock Nanjg Drivers
Buck and Boost Drivers, Testing, Modding, and Discussion

ToyKeepers Flashlight Firmware Repository
Wight’s List of Drivers
Lexels Driver Compilation
The Texas Avenger TA Driver series
Texas Buck Driver Series
Led4power Drivers, Tailcaps, MCPCB’s

Dr Jones Custom Firmwares
LuxDrv, LupoDrv, MobyDrv, Nlite, MiniDrv, MiniMo, RGBW

Springs Testing by Djozz
Spring Compression and Current Flow
How to add Copper Braid to Springs
DIY Lighted Tailcap – GITD and Trit Alternative
SMD Resistor Values
(Some common resistor values found in electronic devices)

SMD Resistor Code Calculator

How do Resistors Work
Surface-Mount Device Technology
3 Digit SMD Resistor Examples
4 Digit SMD Resistor examples
Resistor Temperature
Resistors in Parallel Calculator
Ohms Law/Resistance Calculator
Reading Resistor Colour Codes
Multimeters and Current Measurement
AWG Wire Conversion
(Simple wire conversion so we can know what the USA folks are talking about Wink

Wire Gauge Calculator
Wire Gauge and Current Limits Including Skin Depth and Strength
A quick reference to some cells showing capacities, dimensions, runtimes at different loads etc
Images and data courtesy of HKJ
For his full in-depth reviews please visit his website

Battery Sizes
Battery University
Battery Glossary
Battery Abbreviations
Non Rechargeable Batteries
Primary Cells

About Primary Batteries
Choices of Primary Batteries
Energy at Low Voltage in Alkaline Batteries
Zinc Carbon, Alkaline, Lithium Primary Disassembly of 9V Primary Batteries
Rechargeable Batteries
Secondary Cells
NiMH Cells

Eneloop NiMH Rechargeables
Images and data thanks to HKJ Reviews and ChibiM’s Overview: All Eneloop Batteries
See also Eneloop 101.com

More Info on Eneloop Developments
Japanese vs Chinese Eneloop Cycle Testing Results
Long Term 2nd and 1st Generation Eneloop Observations

Nickel-Based Batteries
Charging NiCd Batteries
Charging NiMH Batteries
HKJ Battery Charging NiMH

Comparison of Secondary Batteries
Test of AA Batteries – Eneloops, Primary Lithiums & Alkaline

Comparison of AA Battery Chemistries
HKJ’s NiMH & Primary Cell Individual Tests

HKJ’s NiMH & Primary Cell Comparator
Lithium-Ion Rechargeable Batteries
Lithium-Ion Cells
(Lithium-Ion cells are defined by their physical dimensions)

(Although most cells do not conform to these exact measurements, especially protected button top cells which are usually slightly longer & wider due to the added components)

Button Top or Flat Top
How to Tell if a Battery is Protected
The Anatomy of a Protected Battery
How to Re-Wrap a Battery
Protection Circuits
Discharge Protection Tests
Resetting Protection Circuits
Protection on the Positive Side
Disassembly of 9V Li-Ion Batteries
Internal Impedance/ Resistance of Batteries
Lithium Ion Battery Safety & Cell Voltages
(Lithium Ion cells require more careful handling than normal off the shelf batteries and can be extremely dangerous if mistreated. This can happen by overcharging, overdischarging, physical damage and shorting.
Safe voltage parameters for this type of cell are, unless otherwise stated:
Fully Charged 4.2v – Fully Depleted 2.5 – 3.0v.
The use of a simple Digital MultiMeter is highly advised for periodic checks of the cells and charging equipment performance.)

A Litany for Beginners
Lithium-Ion Battery Safety 101
MDs Lithium-Ion > Incandescent Guide
Charger Not Charging to 4.2v, is it faulty?

Lithium-Ion Safety Concerns
Summary of Do’s and Don’ts
Safety of Lithium-Ion Batteries
Li-Ion Battery Safety & Shopping Guide
Using Li-Ion cells in LED flashlights Safely
Using a Digital Multimeter
Multimeters and Thermocouples
How far can Li-Ion be Discharged?

14500 Battery Explosion
Ultrafire 18650 3000mA exploded
18650, How Dangerous is it for a Newbie like me?

Gouged Battery
Alkaline Leakage
Leaking Li-Ion Cells
Dinged & Dented Cells
Flat-Top 18650 Battery Pushed In

Battery Chemistry Explained
Lithium-Based Batteries
Types of Lithium-Ion Cells
Charging Lithium-Ion Batteries

Internal Resistance of Batteries
How Healthy are your Batteries

Parasitic Drain
How to Find Parasitic Drain
Typical Cell Voltages

Current Draw Conversion

Watts Volts Amps – Some Explaining

10440 Cells

14500 Cells

16340 Cells

CR123A and Rechargeable Substitutes
18350 Cells

HKJ’s Small Cell Individual Tests
HKJ’s Small Li-Ion Cell Comparator
18500 Cells


18650 Cells


Test/Review of Samsung SDI INR18650-30Q
Test/Review of Panasonic/Sanyo NCR18650 GA Comparison with Samsung 35E & LG MJ1
HKJ’s Large Cell Individual Tests
HKJ’s 18650 Li-Ion Cell Comparator
HKJ’s Summary for all Tested 18650 Cells
HKJ’s Common Curves for all Tested 18650 Cells
Test/ Review of Lumintop 18650 3400mAh USB LM34C
Test/ Review of MecArmy 18650 U18-34 3400mAh USB
Disassembly of USB Charged Batteries
20-21700 cells

26650 Cells

HKJ’s 26650 Cell Individual Tests
HKJ’s 26650 Li-Ion Cell Comparator

Estimating Remaining Capacity in Li-Ion Cells
Reading The Graphs
How to Read the Comparators
How the Tests are done & How to Read the Charts

Battery Comparison Charts
AkkuDB Cell Comparators

Review Request for HKJ – Rechargeable Batteries
Batteries to Avoid
(Very poor quality cells with false capacity claims and very often, safety issues)

Bad Batteries
Batteries with Ridiculous Ratings
Disassembly of a cheap 18650 Battery
Disassembly of some UltraFire Batteries
UltraFire Fakes, Opened up and Refunded
Test/Review of UltraFire SZ18650 9900mAh
Disassembly of UltraFire 9900mAh 18650 battery
Have you seen this type of Counterfeit 18650 Before?

More Information About Batteries
(Links to various articles on the subject of batteries)

Best IMR 18650?
Battery Capacity
What is the C-rate
Net Calorific Value
Confusion with Voltages
How to Maximize Runtime

How to Store Batteries
Can Batteries be Restored?
Life Expectancy of an 18650
What causes Lithium-Ion to Age
Lithium-Ion Battery Storage Tips
How to Know End of Battery Life
How to Prolong Lithium-Based Cells
How Long can New Batteries sit Before Charging

Four Renegades of Battery Failure
Corrosion, Shedding and Internal Short
Optical Micrographs taken from a Failed 18650 Battery
Phenomenon of Lithium Plating during the Charging Process
Why do Li-Ion Batteries Die & How to Improve the Situation

Serial and Parallel Configurations
Battery Balancing
Balance Charging 18650/26650 Cells

Charging from a USB Port
Fast and Ultra-Fast Chargers
How to Charge and When to Charge
Cables Can Significantly Impact the Charging Speed USB Devices

Cycling Performance
How to Prime Batteries
Basics about Discharging
Discharging at High and Low Temperatures
Best Battery for Cold Conditions? < 0 degree celsius

Electric Current
Conventional Current vs Electron Flow

Community Battery Pulls Overview Thread
Tutorial: Laptop Battery Pack 18650 Extraction
Cheap Authentic Battery Packs to Harvest 18650 Cells
Best Brand Laptop Battery for 18650 Cells & Capacity Formula
Jump Started my Car with of 6 Panasonic NCR 18650A this morning…
Which Laptop Battery Pack yields the Best, Highest Capacity 18650’s?
USB Accessories & Charging Equipment
Test/Review Index of HKJ Tested USB Chargers
Review Request for HKJ USB Power Devices
Disassembly of USB Charged Batteries
USB Wiring Diagrams & Coding

USB Wiki
Cables Can Significantly Impact the Charging Speed USB Devices
HKJ’s USB Power Information
HKJ’s How Does a USB Charger Work?
HKJ’s Index of Articles about Chargers/ Batteries etc
A look at QI – Wireless Power Transfer
Battery Chargers
Test/Review Index of HKJ Tested Chargers
Review Request for HKJ Chargers
HKJ Testing Status for 2014
HKJ Testing Status for 2015
HJK Testing Status for 2016
HKJ Testing Status for 2017
HKJ Testing Status for 2018
HKJ Testing Status for 2019

HKJ’s Lab Setup/ Equipment
How HKJ Tests USB Power Supplies/ Powerbanks
More Information About Chargers
Charger Basics – 1, 2
Reviews of Batteries and Chargers
Reviews of USB Charging Equipment
What is a Hobby Charger
How HKJ Tests Chargers

Thanks to HKJ, Match, ChibiM, Scaru, Djozz, Texas_Ace, Flashlight Wiki, and
everyone else who contributed to this reference compilation. Thumbs Up
Some Useful Component Sellers
List of Suppliers

Other Interesting Links

HKJ Reviews
Battery University
Basic Flashlight Tutorial

SelfBuilt Flashlight Reviews
Old Lumens Youtube Videos
A Guide to Anodize your Titanium
Fix for Non-Standing Tailcap Switch Boots
Anodizing on Flashlights-How to tell the Difference
The Evolution of a Flashaholic
A Beginners Guide to Flashaholism
Talk about Future Projects and Donation Topic

All things budget knives
What blade did you EDC today?
Parametrek Product Search Flashlights

CRX Flashlight Builds
Flashlight User Interfaces – CheatSheets
Old Lumens BLF Contest Archive 2013 to 2019
What did You Mod Today?
GITD Glow Powders & Gaskets

The BLF Automotive Car LED Headlights Thread
The Daily Joke Thread
You have a Flashlight Addiction when…
BudgetLightForum Wink

Edited by: CRX on 08/16/2020 - 03:33
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
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Posts: 172
Location: Honolulu, HI

This is fantastic info all in one place. Thanks for doing this!

toysareforboys's picture
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Wow, that MT-G led is sexy Smile

-Jamie M.

Last seen: 5 months 3 weeks ago
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Location: USA

AWESOME. Thank you for the data compilation.

Bookmarked and subscribed.


Hopback's picture
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Location: West Sussex

Phenomenal work CRX!

Must have taken you ages to get all the photos sorted 8)

Thanks for putting all this info in one place.


Last seen: 4 years 3 months ago
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Location: Downunder

Good Day CRX, Smile

Arrow Right SUPERB resource…. :exmark:

Thank You Very Much,
Roberta 0:)

Greetings from The Land Downunder

Adam706's picture
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Nice work!

Werner wrote:
I have no pets so I have too pee on the carpet myself…

“this tiny flashlight was the one that shined best”
Last seen: 1 year 2 months ago
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Location: Texas

Thanks for compiling all that useful info into one place. Very helpful.

sb56637's picture
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Top notch reference! Thanks so much for compiling all of this. Sticky’d.

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

Bort's picture
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Location: Holding the proverbial flashlight

This reminds me to post something Scaru and i had worked on a while back

The Journal of Alternative Facts

"It is critical that there is a credible academic source for the growing and important discipline of Alternative Facts. This field of study will just keep winning, and we knew that all the best people would want to be on board. There is a real risk in the world today that people might be getting their information about science from actual scientists."


led4power's picture
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Actual size of leds is important,mabye another set of pics with actual size(you can find dimensions in datasheets).

kreisler's picture
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useful compilation!

*FMI* i got 4 i/o sh
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Location: Michigan

Excellent job, thank you very much!

ryansoh3's picture
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Great sticky, will be a great reference to both beginners and modders. Thanks for the compilation!

Added to my own bookmark. Wink

BLF ≠ B-grade Flashlight Forum


Werner's picture
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Brings up the question why is nobody using this cree xte emitters?

Buwuve's picture
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This is a great list. Thank you for doing this Smile

Light up the darkness.

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Location: West Coast Canada

Thanks crx, great info for us newbies.

CRX's picture
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led4power wrote:
Actual size of leds is important,mabye another set of pics with actual size(you can find dimensions in datasheets).

Good idea, added.

Open to other suggestions anyone may have.

8steve88's picture
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That must have been a ton of work, thank you very much. Loads of useful info in one bookmark!

led4power's picture
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crx wrote:
led4power wrote:
Actual size of leds is important,mabye another set of pics with actual size(you can find dimensions in datasheets).

Good idea, added.

Open to other suggestions anyone may have.

I was thinking,one picture just like the first one,but real scaled leds dimensions.For example,set XM-L(2) as reference size,and increase/decrease size of other leds acorrding to their dimensions relative to xm-l.Or simpler,picture should look exactly like you have all these emmiters on the table and you take pic of them with camera.

CRX's picture
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led4power wrote:

I was thinking,one picture just like the first one,but real scaled leds dimensions.For example,set XM-L(2) as reference size,and increase/decrease size of other leds acorrding to their dimensions relative to xm-l.Or simpler,picture should look exactly like you have all these emmiters on the table and you take pic of them with camera.

Ah, i see what you meant now. Added

Last seen: 1 year 3 months ago
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Location: Northern Indiana

Wow! I’m sure there are many folks online who simply don’t grasp how many hours it would take to compile, catalog and post all of that information. For a noob like me, this is an invaluable resource.

Thanks, crx!!

g22dru's picture
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Great post crx! Thanks for posting!

….just one more….

Suncoaster's picture
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Excellent Resource !

"In the land of the blond the one eyed man is king."

*This message is protected with ROT26 encryption.Old Lumens

southland's picture
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Thanks CRX, that must have taken a long time, awesome job. At the very top where the leds names and pictures are listed the SST-90 is listed as ST-90.

CRX's picture
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I wondered if anyone would notice… Fixed Wink

DBSAR's picture
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great topic post ! Smile you should add the various “Straw Hat” emitters too found in many of the cheaper single AA & AAA lights found many places.

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

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Great information all in one post. Thank you

djozz's picture
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I had not seen this post yet, what a great and well layed-out compilation of information, thanks crx!

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Location: Arizona

What an informative post. I just wish that I would have found this sooner, it would have saved me alot of time!

Well done & Thanks

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Location: SC

Incredible contribution.  Bookmarked for much future reference.  Thank you CRX.