What's the best zoomie at any price?

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Jalben
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What's the best zoomie at any price?

One of my co-workers that I’ve converted loves zoomies. He’s looking to step up his game and get a more powerful zoomie. Currently has Sipik SK68 and SK98. What should be the next one for him to get and is there an ultimate zoomie?

Update with summary from posts below and some other searching:

Zeusray $9.99 $7.99
XM-L2
solid pill for better heat management
580 kcd Lux
1 × 18650 Battery
Available: http://www.dealmetic.com/product.asp?ID=FL05518
Review: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/34139

UniqueFire UF-1405 $37.36 $27.35
Runs 2 × 18650 or can run 2 × 26650 for longer runtime
58kcd at 4.5m
Available: http://www.gearbest.com/led-flashlights/pp_71429.html
Review: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/33455

JAX Z1
$ 59.79
1 × 18650 Battery / 1 × 26650 Battery
AR coated Lens
43 KLux @1m/Kcd
946 metres range
Available: http://www.banggood.com/JAX-Z1-Cree-XM-L2-U2-Zoomable-1100LM-5-Mode-LED-Flashlight-p-940891.html
Review: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/33672#comment-644315

JAX Z1 Extension tube for $6
http://www.banggood.com/JAX-Z1-Zoomable-LED-Flashlight-18650-Extension-Tube-p-941207.html

WOLF-EYES Seal Hunter
$226.76 $149.99
131kcd
Available: http://www.banggood.com/WOLF-EYES-Seal-Hunter-CREE-XM-L-U2-1000lm-Zoomable-LED-Flashlight-p-919779.html
Review: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/30250

TODO List:

Acquire more parts.

Devise cheap way to make TIRs.

Rub some bacon on it.

Finish something that I 

Edited by: Jalben on 12/02/2014 - 13:30
Chicken Drumstick
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Best and ultimate at what?

Chicken Drumstick
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BTW – this is a brilliant zoomy, regardless of the price:
http://www.dealmetic.com/product.asp?ID=FL05518

Very high output, compact and small enough to fit in your pocket. Nicely made, even has good tint.

Worth noting, larger LED’s (XM-L or XM-L2) won’t throw as well as smaller LED’s, but offer more lumens. This means on flood they are brighter, but won’t light things up as well at a distance.

The SK68’s tend to use an old XR-E emitter, it’s tiny and not many lumens, but throws light very well.

Out of my zoomy collection, this is along with the Zeusray linked above, is my favourite:

http://www.fasttech.com/products/0/10000890/1075602-pop-lite-t33-cree-xp...

Not the highest output, but a nice mix, it does however throw very well. And it uses a TIR not a aspheric optic.

djozz
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The best zoomie in terms of throw may be the Uniquefire UF1405, but I doubt that you want to go that big. The Jax Z1 is very polular and of awesome build quality and a bit smaller. But any XM-L(2) zoomie improves tremendously when a dedomed XP-G2 on a DTP copper board is swapped in and the driver upgraded to 3.5A. So you need to specify things here, must it be a small one etc.

I think for me the best overall zoomie is still the Uniquefire UF-T20, provided that it is modded with a dedomed XP-G2 at 3-3.5A.

If the zoomie has to be smaller, I like the Cofly KX-A036 the best: good quality, cheap, very moddable and nicer than the Zeusray a lot of people are raving about.

For an AA zoomie I was very pleased with the Cofly KX-H10, better performance and quality than the other AA zoomies around (and I like the coloured plastic window Smile ).

 

From what I hear, the expensive zoomies do not perform much better than the cheap ones.

Jalben
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Chicken Drumstick wrote:
Best and ultimate at what?

Good point. I intended to leave the criteria vague as I just don’t see many zoomies past the $20 range, other than the LEDLensers. I’m personally a lumen whore, so I don’t see many multi emitter zoomies other than the $500+ LedLenser ones, like the X21R.2.

Are there other multi-emitter zoomies?

Barring multi emitters, are some zoomies significantly better throwers than others? I know the onestopthrowshop has a SmallSun ZY-C10 that they sometimes sell rated at 107Kcd. Has any one put together a table of aspherics and their lux values?

TODO List:

Acquire more parts.

Devise cheap way to make TIRs.

Rub some bacon on it.

Finish something that I 

Serville
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that Poplite looks like a led lenser p7.
Only p7 uses 4xAAA

Chicken Drumstick
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Trouble is modded lights can be vastly different to stick lights.

A good zoomy can have the ability to throw similar to a reflector of equal size. But without the spill beam.

Throw really comes down to the emitter size and its surface brightness. This means lower lumen less like the xp-e often work well for throw. But you won’t get the same level of output in foods compared to an xm-l.

Not seen any other multi emitter zoomies sadly.

ezarc
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I originally considered the Trustfire Z1 (not the CR123 one) for my first LED flashlight. link

That Jax Z1 that djozz posted looks pretty badass though.

I really don’t like zoomies though so I haven’t really looked at many of them to know whats good.

djozz
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Jalben wrote:
Has any one put together a table of aspherics and their lux values?

I have a few values that give an idea. These are the maximum lux-values that I have obtained, with dedomed XP-G2 on copper  at 3-3.5A (the sk68clone a dedomed XP-E2 at 2.2A):

Sipik sk68 clone,      effective lens diameter 20mm:   39 klux@1meter

Uniquefire UF-T20,   effective lens diameter 32mm:   108 klux@1meter

Uniquefire UF-1406,  effective lens diamer 45mm:     235 klux@1meter

Uniquefire UF-1405,  effective lens diameter 62mm:  407 klux@1meter

As you can see the lux-values go up quite lineair with the surface area of the lens, as predicted by theory. You can do fancy expensive things with wavien collars to get more, I do not have those.

Omega_17
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DEFT-X https://omglumens.com/DEFT.php :bigsmile:
Around 1000 Kcd.

djozz
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Omega_17 wrote:
DEFT-X https://omglumens.com/DEFT.php :bigsmile: Around 1000 Kcd.

the DEFT-X is not a zoomie, it is a fixed thrower. Therefore it can make use of a reflecting collar, that would interfere with a zooming function.

fireblade893
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I have bought a couple of these and find with an easy mod they have a very good output and a good throw

http://www.banggood.com/Ultrafire-CREE-XML-T6-1800LM-5-mode-Zoomable-LED-Flashlight-p-75196.html

The driver in both of mine is a F13 driver like these

Driver Ultrafire F13

The driver has a second ouput (but not marked in this) which has a good output, the main down side is a hollow pill, trying to get a mate to make me a middle for the pill

I just moved output over and swapped in a XP-L on noctigon (21mm) and it easily has more output and a smaller hotspot square than the Zuesray I would say at least 25-30% more lumens.

It also takes a 26650 battery and only costs £5.22

Jalben
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djozz wrote:

Jalben wrote:
Has any one put together a table of aspherics and their lux values?

I have a few values that give an idea. These are the maximum lux-values that I have obtained, with dedomed XP-G2 on copper  at 3-3.5A (the sk68clone a dedomed XP-E2 at 2.2A):

Sipik sk68 clone,      effective lens diameter 20mm:   39 klux@1meter

Uniquefire UF-T20,   effective lens diameter 32mm:   108 klux@1meter

Uniquefire UF-1406,  effective lens diamer 45mm:     235 klux@1meter

Uniquefire UF-1405,  effective lens diameter 62mm:  407 klux@1meter

As you can see the lux-values go up quite lineair with the surface area of the lens, as predicted by theory. You can do fancy expensive things with wavien collars to get more, I do not have those.

That’s awesome! Exactly the kind of thing I’m looking for! Thanks!

TODO List:

Acquire more parts.

Devise cheap way to make TIRs.

Rub some bacon on it.

Finish something that I 

hank
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If your friend’s smart about handling li-ions, the li-ion dealmetic zoom is a good bet.

dangerous
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I wonder how stock Jax Z1 vs stock UF-1405 with XM-L2 would compare…

http://www.gearbest.com/led-flashlights/pp_71429.html
vs
http://www.banggood.com/JAX-Z1-Cree-XM-L2-U2-Zoomable-1100LM-5-Mode-LED-Flashlight-p-940891.html

BLF

Jalben
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hank wrote:
If your friend’s smart about handling li-ions, the li-ion dealmetic zoom is a good bet.

Yeah, he only uses protected 18650s from reputable vendors and charges them on his desk while he’s working so he can keep an eye on them. Never drains them to cut off.

TODO List:

Acquire more parts.

Devise cheap way to make TIRs.

Rub some bacon on it.

Finish something that I 

Fritz t. Cat
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Of large ones, I like the insides of the Uniquefire UF-T20 and the outside of the Yezl t9. The Uniquefire UF-T20 is well made with a nice short focal length glass lens, XM-L2, etc. but it is pug ugly. I like lights made by soldering together pieces of copper pipe, but I don’t like an NC machined shape to look like it was patched together from plumbing surplus. It feels bad in the hand too.
The Yezl is my most beautiful light, with a smooth elegant unusual shape and fine detail, but both the fancy drivers quit the first week, and the thin long focal lens is only good at extreme throw and extreme flood. With replaced drivers and lenses they are my best lights.

In a smaller size, it is the SK-58, though most others have their niches. The TrustFire Z8 has lovely stainless steel threads and enough aluminum for cooling. I like an UltraOK SK-68 for more than two amps, because of the cooling. The Coast HP1 and others of its type have high optical efficiency even in throw mode, unlike simple converging lens zoomies.

I agree about the Zeusray for intermediate size. But there are other good lights in its class, such as the SK-73.

Flashlight designers should look at lighthouses and pottery.
这些谁设计的手电筒应该看灯塔,以及在陶器。

Fritz t. Cat
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djozz wrote:
You can do fancy expensive things with wavien collars to get more, I do not have those.

What is a wavien collar? I don’t see how one can get better throw, with the same area, than a lens. That is, it does not appear to be possible, to me.

Flashlight designers should look at lighthouses and pottery.
这些谁设计的手电筒应该看灯塔,以及在陶器。

Fritz t. Cat
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dangerous wrote:
I wonder how stock Jax Z1 vs stock UF-1405 with XM-L2 would compare…

http://www.gearbest.com/led-flashlights/pp_71429.html
vs
http://www.banggood.com/JAX-Z1-Cree-XM-L2-U2-Zoomable-1100LM-5-Mode-LED-Flashlight-p-940891.html


The JAX Z1 looks good, except for price and what looks like a thin long focal length lens that will give an unnecessarily small spot with little improvement in throw.
The UniqueFire UF-1405 looks like it would work well, but is ugly and sharp cornered, like the UF T20.

Flashlight designers should look at lighthouses and pottery.
这些谁设计的手电筒应该看灯塔,以及在陶器。

18sixfifty
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The Uniquefire UF1405 is probably the ulitmate right now. Massive throw, but it’s huge.

For a smaller light I would go with the UF-T20 I love that little light.

Of course either of them benefit greatly from a de-domed emitter and better or modded driver.

I’m a junky, I mod lights so I can sell lights so I can buy more light to mod so I can sell lights to buy more lights to mod.

Chicken Drumstick
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Serville wrote:
that Poplite looks like a led lenser p7.
Only p7 uses 4xAAA

Quite similar yes. Pop lite do a T34 which is 4AAA and has modes. Very P7 like. In fact I suspect they come from the same factory. The T33 is a tad smaller and single mode. But is really nice to use.
Chicken Drumstick
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Another thing. Some of the high lux zoomies, I wonder how useful they always are. I’ve an XP-G2 with a Qlite 3.04A driver in a 26650 sized zoomy. It looks impressive. But the reality is the same Led and driver in a C8 throw further and is more useful general purpose. The beam is just too narrow on the zoomy. De-domed would make it smaller again. It is very good on flood however.

Firelight2
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djozz wrote:

Omega_17 wrote:
DEFT-X https://omglumens.com/DEFT.php :bigsmile: Around 1000 Kcd.

the DEFT-X is not a zoomie, it is a fixed thrower. Therefore it can make use of a reflecting collar, that would interfere with a zooming function.

It’s possible to make a zoomie with a Wavien collar. Mount the LED on a pillar (like in an LED Lenser), and attach the collar to the sliding bezel. When the bezel is retracted in flood mode, the collar would slide below the LED out of the way. If done right you’d get a nice wide flood together with the maximum possible amount of throw, though the overall light might be a bit longer or wider than a typical zoomie.

To my knowledge, nobody’s ever built a light that does this though.

Fritz t. Cat
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Firelight2 wrote:
djozz wrote:

Omega_17 wrote:
DEFT-X https: //omglumens.com/DEFT.php :bigsmile: Around 1000 Kcd.

the DEFT-X is not a zoomie, it is a fixed thrower. Therefore it can make use of a reflecting collar, that would interfere with a zooming function.

It’s possible to make a zoomie with a Wavien collar. Mount the LED on a pillar (like in an LED Lenser), and attach the collar to the sliding bezel. When the bezel is retracted in flood mode, the collar would slide below the LED out of the way. If done right you’d get a nice wide flood together with the maximum possible amount of throw, though the overall light might be a bit longer or wider than a typical zoomie.

To my knowledge, nobody’s ever built a light that does this though.


I see what you are talking about know. A TIR or reflector outer ring, like a Coast HP1 or a Fresnel lighthouse has. That allows better optics in a small space or a very short focal length. It also allows two elements that focus differently, as in the HP1.
It does not give more throw than is possible with single element optics. That is limited by the luminance and the aperture, and refractive lens zoomies approach that limit.
What no one has done yet is to carry it another step and use more than two zones. There are “Fresnel lens” flashlights that use multi-zoned lenses but none with multiple refractive and multiple reflective zones or elements, like the optics that Fresnel actually made.

Flashlight designers should look at lighthouses and pottery.
这些谁设计的手电筒应该看灯塔,以及在陶器。

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I just recently got a JAX Z1, up till now I’ve hated zoomies, I built a UF-1405 for a friend and liked it but it was way to large to be practical so when a chance to pick up a Z1 cheap came along I jumped on it and I couldnt be happier. It’s replaced so many light’s it’s pretty unbelievable how useful of a light it is. I’ve only owne SK68’s (and some other 1AA’s) and an SK98 and a TF 26650 zoomie, never a T20 so I cant comment there but the Z1 is really a nice light. Mine does 238kcd for nearly an hour on a KK at 4.8A (maxes out at about 5.2A from a 25R and heat’s up instantly so you know its sinking well.

All in all no I dont regret not getting a zoomie sooner but had I waited longer to get this Z1 I would have regretted that. It’s such a useful light. Especially for city use where you don’t want light to go where you don’t want.

 RIP  SPC Joey Riley, KIA 11/24/14. Now I am become death, the destroyer of worlds.

travis
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“best zoomie” = oxymoron

“"A free people ought not only be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government.””
-George Washington

Fritz t. Cat
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Yes, it is like wine. You pay for the improbability. That correlates little with what you want, unless you practice wanting what other people want.

Flashlight designers should look at lighthouses and pottery.
这些谁设计的手电筒应该看灯塔,以及在陶器。

BLightSam
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Chicken Drumstick wrote:
BTW – this is a brilliant zoomy, regardless of the price:
http://www.dealmetic.com/product.asp?ID=FL05518

Very high output, compact and small enough to fit in your pocket. Nicely made, even has good tint.

Spec says 2000 Lumen. Anybody measure the real, non-Chinese Lumen?
Fritz t. Cat
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The tail threads on my Zeusray are on the loose side. This sort of thing might be caused by thermal expansion during rapid NC machining. I junked one $3 SK-68 for loose and short tail threads.

Flashlight designers should look at lighthouses and pottery.
这些谁设计的手电筒应该看灯塔,以及在陶器。

Chicken Drumstick
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BLightSam wrote:
Chicken Drumstick wrote:
BTW – this is a brilliant zoomy, regardless of the price:
http://www.dealmetic.com/product.asp?ID=FL05518

Very high output, compact and small enough to fit in your pocket. Nicely made, even has good tint.

Spec says 2000 Lumen. Anybody measure the real, non-Chinese Lumen?

No idea on actual output. But it pulls 3.75 amps on a good battery and is very bright.
Jalben
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Updating Opening post with info from this thread:

Zeusray $9.99 $7.99
XM-L2
solid pill for better heat management
580 kcd Lux
1 × 18650 Battery
Available: http://www.dealmetic.com/product.asp?ID=FL05518
Review: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/34139

UniqueFire UF-1405 $37.36 $27.35
Runs 2 × 18650 or can run 2 × 26650 for longer runtime
58kcd at 4.5m
Available: http://www.gearbest.com/led-flashlights/pp_71429.html
Review: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/33455

JAX Z1
$ 59.79
1 × 18650 Battery / 1 × 26650 Battery
AR coated Lens
43 KLux @1m/Kcd
946 metres range
Available: http://www.banggood.com/JAX-Z1-Cree-XM-L2-U2-Zoomable-1100LM-5-Mode-LED-Flashlight-p-940891.html
Review: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/33672#comment-644315

JAX Z1 Extension tube for $6
http://www.banggood.com/JAX-Z1-Zoomable-LED-Flashlight-18650-Extension-Tube-p-941207.html

WOLF-EYES Seal Hunter
$226.76 $149.99
131kcd
Available: http://www.banggood.com/WOLF-EYES-Seal-Hunter-CREE-XM-L-U2-1000lm-Zoomable-LED-Flashlight-p-919779.html
Review: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/30250

TODO List:

Acquire more parts.

Devise cheap way to make TIRs.

Rub some bacon on it.

Finish something that I 

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