What are your favorite LED emitters, why?

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xtarflashlight's picture
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Joined: 01/21/2013 - 21:25
Posts: 174
Location: Shenzhen
What are your favorite LED emitters, why?

There are some essential attributes to evaluate emitters, output, runtime, and color rendering… You know super high max outputs usually come from large lights and large batteries, usually at the cost of good runtimes. Max outputs also sacrifice something on color rendering. And methods of producing accurate colors always takes up a few lumens.

For the best emitter, you might need it to cover all the bases, such as, high output, great tints, high CRI. This is, in fact, very hard to achieve. Some emitters can give parts of what we need, but not all of it. No emitter does everything. So some people tell they like emitters that output a lot of light, don’t heat up quickly, even they don’t have high CRI. While, other users think high color rendition is much important for choosing a light. Interested to hear what are your favorite emitters, and why?

Last seen: 1 hour 21 min ago
Joined: 04/25/2019 - 21:13
Posts: 209

Tint > sunlike, optisolis, thrive.
easily available high cri > 219b, sst20 (FA4), e21a

it sucks not having any choices…

I only like high CRI. Collection:

Fireflies NOV-MU 21 4500k E21A

Fireflies ROT66 219B SW45 D220

Fireflies E07 Copper 219B SW45k? (odd/higher lumen bin with lower r9 and higher cct?)

Fireflies E07 219B SW45k

Fireflies E07x Pro sst20 FA4 4000k (mail)


Varmint removal:

Convoy M21A C8 ver SST20 4000k (5a)

Convoy S2+ SST20 4000k  FB4 (3200ma)



Emisar D18 660nm SST20 (mail)



CRI test dump https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1kcl_uOhgfpR4RSsa8F4b-UUVP9mkL6Cr...

Last seen: 8 hours 21 min ago
Joined: 05/30/2019 - 12:44
Posts: 17
Location: Turkey

My fav led was xpl-hi but these days im into osram territory

Last seen: 1 day 15 hours ago
Joined: 06/02/2013 - 16:56
Posts: 1070
Location: France

SST-20, long throw, cheap and very good reds.

sp5it's picture
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Joined: 12/25/2012 - 07:51
Posts: 1279
Location: Poland

MT-G2 for vanilla white, homogeneous , wide beam.
E21A for CRI
SBT90.2 for massive throw.

Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that. George Carlin

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Jack Kellar
Jack Kellar's picture
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Joined: 03/09/2014 - 14:21
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Location: Throwing bolts at anomalies
  • Nichia 219C (good CRI and tint on both of the samples I own)
  • Cree XP-G2 (only ever got great tints with the ones I had and the die size offered very good throw, I was gouged when they went out of production)
  • Cree XP-L HD (never had better cool white LEDs than those, their CCT is kind of amazing)
  • Luminus SST20 (the CRI and R9 are impossible to not admire, but only consistently so in warmer tints – the 5000K one on my Convoy M2 has that annoying green tint shift on very low mode, I have to run it on at least 1% power to do away with it)

Last seen: 12 hours 4 min ago
Joined: 09/22/2015 - 20:38
Posts: 808
Location: Prescott Az

SBT90.2 in BLF GT94 and HK90vn for power throw, and in K75vn and MT90 PlusVn and MF05 for throw, and in KR1vn for edc power throw. 

XHP50.2 in EC03 and FT02S and NSX53vn and FW21ProVn and MMU-X3vn for small-medium power. 

Osram W2 in D4V2vn and FW4aVn for power throw edc and D18vn for medium power throw. 

XHP70.2 in MS18vn for massive flood and in MS06vn and X45vn for medium flood. 

XHP35 in R90TSvn for power throw. 




2 Cor 5:6-8

Last seen: 2 hours 8 min ago
Joined: 10/01/2019 - 20:11
Posts: 91

SST20 is probably my favorite all around LED.

SBT 90.2 and the White Flats, they are just a lot of fun in all the lights I’ve seen them in.

MT-G2- Smooth, creamy white beam. I have a old Fenix TK35 with this LED. It’s probably my favorite light these days, which is odd because I didn’t like it at first. After carrying it around for a while though, it’s just flawless. It just provides smooth area light.

Firelight2's picture
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Joined: 04/08/2011 - 15:17
Posts: 4312
Location: California
  • SST-20, 4000K FA4 bin – excellent CRI with good mix of lumens and throw. Tends to have greenish tint at low power, except for the very best bins of SST-20.
  • XPL HI 4000K 5D – excellent tint. Best LED when it comes to combination of lumens, throw, and running at low temperature.
  • Oslon White 1 – Best possible throw at the expense of everything else.
  • LH351D dog farts bins – good CRI and lumens. Very floody. Greenish tint especially at low power.
  • Nichia 219C – good combo of lumens and CRI. Not very throwy. Good tint at low power.
  • Nichia 219B sw45k – excellent tint and CRI, but this is an outdated LED that produces substandard lumens and throw.

Overall, the SST-20 is my favorite, followed by XPL HI.

sp5it's picture
Last seen: 5 hours 28 min ago
Joined: 12/25/2012 - 07:51
Posts: 1279
Location: Poland

Perception wrote:
MT-G2- Smooth, creamy white beam. I have a old Fenix TK35 with this LED.
I put this led in my Thrunite TC20. Most used light by me lately.

Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that. George Carlin

 Anyone offended by my signature please fill Complaint Form. Thank you.

 If a lot of people listen to Slayer, the world would be a better place to live" - Tommy Wiseau

Last seen: 4 hours 35 min ago
Joined: 11/02/2018 - 17:07
Posts: 1187
Location: Vancouver, WA

Sst40 5000k. I’m surprised it’s not on the list yet? Good tint and beam in SMO reflectors, very high output, excellent efficiency with low Vf, XM-L footprint, and it’s cheap. I’m sure I’ll like the SFT-40-w more though.

Cree xp-l HD in 5000K same reasons as the sst40 in a smaller footprint without giving up much output, easy to shave the dome for better throw (I’m cheap-save $3 per emitter than buy the HI version).

Sst20 4000k 95 cri. Good output for a high cri warm white emitter (beats 219C), good beam in reflector and optics, can be driven pretty hard in a fet light, good cd/mm² for throw, and cheap.

Sst70. It’s 6/12v so a drop-in for xhp50.2 or xhp50. High output (3000 lumens at 6-7 amps) and competes even with 3 volt xhp50.2, with way better throw and a nice even beam with no corona or weirdness. Yah, 6500K inly for now amd a bit green at low drive currents, but I’ll take that over Cree’s version of the rainbow.

Honorable mentions: 3v cree xhp50.2, crazy output for 5050 led, can be sliced and diced for throw, but ugly beam in reflectors. 5000K and 5700K versions are scarce.

Cree xhp70.2. Name another emitter that can do as much as this one? Crazy high output, available in high cri, warm white, efficient for high output at low drive currents, can be sliced and diced for better throw and a relatively nice beam in smo reflectors. However, it has Cree rainbow and it’s expensive.

I’m waiting for the sft-70, and hopefully the 3rd gen Xhps.

Lightbringer's picture
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Location: nyc

In no particular order:

219B – overall good rosy tint, good CRI

‘351D – can be greenish, but overall good tint and good CRI

MT-G2 – creamy-white goodness Love

XM-L/-L2 4C – yeah, above the BBL vs 4D, but behind a good TIR lens it’s got L/L2 efficiency and a natural warm-sunlight color (which is also slightly above the BBL)

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

raccoon city
raccoon city's picture
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Location: रॅकून सिटी Palm Desert CA USA

I don't know emitters that well, but I like the XP-L HI.

I like that the XP-L HI is reasonably bright, it doesn't heat up like other emitters, and it's kinda throwy.

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MoreLumens's picture
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Location: Finland

219b, best tints.
SST20, best output/throw AND HiCRI. LH351D’s come close too.
XP-L Hi, just classic, good throw and some really nice tints too like 3000k 90CRI.
XHP70.2, massive lumens, big boi.
3V XHP50.2, good update for old lights that use 5050 boards. Hard to get good tints. SST40 is also nice white for updating old lights, don’t really feel that 5000k though.

Haven’t tried E17A/E21A so maybe I would like them too.

MT-G2, you don’t even need to see this live, tint is amazing and it pushes really nice lumens too. Would love to see triple or quad light with these. Feels bad that I didn’t get Nitecore EC4SW when had the change.

JasonL's picture
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Joined: 06/12/2021 - 22:35
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Location: Canada

SST-20 very throwy. Not a fan of the tint so much.

Last seen: 1 hour 10 min ago
Joined: 01/07/2016 - 18:51
Posts: 90
Location: United States

Difficult to answer. It depends.

219b for best tint CRI, but output is low. I tend to use it in small, already low output pocket lights. Like Tool AAA.
351D (shaved) for good tint, CRI and output. This is my all around go to emitter. It can be hard to find good ones, and they require a shave.
XPL HI for output and throw. This is my high output, throw emitter. Great tint. Good enough tint shift (rainbow!).

Still looking for an SST20 that I like. I just can’t get over the green hue on low currents.