Do these new XML throwers really throw as far as the proven throwers like the 801/802 or the skyline? Forget about spill, will they light up a target as far away as an R2 thrower?
Throw is a function of reflector frontal area and die surface brightness only. Depth of reflector doesn't matter other than to make a bigger spot (catches more light to focus onto the hotspot). This is the relevant background" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Etendue
This info's partly from a real life physicist who specializes in the field, DrJones, who also posts here. I personally had doubts, but empirical testing shows it to be close enough and I'm much too lazy and probably too stupid to figure out the math.
I think the XML die surface brightness is still lower than the ez900(?) XR-E, so given equivalent reflectors (in mm), no.
The XR-E does have the greatest surface brightness. Reflector diameter and to a much lesser extent reflector depth and the current that you drive the emitter are all that matter with regards to throw. Reflector depth doesn't make the hotspot bigger and does add some light that would be spill back into the hotspot. So it makes it somewhat brighter but only to the extent of those direct rays that would have contributed to spill. It's not a large factor.
You can use an aspheric and if the aspheric and the reflector are the same diameter, assuming the aspheric has the proper focal length, then the flashlight with the aspheric will throw further.
I have the Uniquefire HS-802 and it throws far. It has a 50 some mm diameter reflector and is deep as well. It uses a XR-E R2. It is also a little large and heavy.
I also have an Aurora light using a XR-E R2 and the head diameter is approximately 35 mm. The flashlight itself is a little shorter than the HS-802 and it is a lot lighter. Both use (1) 18650. I used an aspheric lens in the Aurora, painted the existing reflector flat black, painted out the ring around the emitter and used a little translucent tape just around the perimeter of the optic and ended up with an artifact free beam that throws as far as the HS-802 with less weight but no spill.
Both lights are good and have their own uses. If I'm hiking at night and want to look for any animals that are around I can search a greater area with the HS-802. If, using my headlamp, I see a pair of reflective eyeballs and want to identify the animal then all I need is something like my modified Aurora light. It's more or less a light sabre. It illuminates only what it's pointed at and nothing else.
Using XM-L's will get you more light/coverage but it won't throw as far unless the XR-E you are using just isn't driven to spec or unless the diameter of the light with the XM-L is ridiculously large.
Sky Ray now has a Catapult V3 / M3X style light (as in reflector size, 2 x 18650 size). Nearly 60mm reflector and 2 x 18650. Not sure how is it driven....but i am sure it can sustain 3A for good periods of time nicely with the fins and added mass before heat saturation.
Very tempted to try.... but I have already purchased the 3xT6 model.
And seriously for throwing needs nothing seems to beat the Solarforce MPP-1 XR-E (reflector league), and Dereelight DBS V3 XR-E aspheric. (If you count discontinued lights then the DEFT will take this place). In CPF there is a person who did a 73mm reflector for XM-L.....good shots and give you an idea what can stuff do. They have a TK-35 for reference (same spot/brightness as the Ultrafire C8 style lights).
Check out the TRA-66 and TMA-66, which would be the aspheric versions of XR-E and XM-L.
PS. Nothing throws as much as lasers. Check out LPF. :D
Correction, the Catapult V3 has a reflector size of 54mm, OP. But it is probably driven really well and extremely good heatsinking. The Sky Ray has an outer diameter of 62mm. Think the reflector size may just be a wee bit bigger than the Thrunite Catapult.
$29.99 plus about $2 shipping
The HS802 can now be had for less than 18 bucks now.. if anyone is interested in this Uniquefire HS-802
I just got both of those light from DX about 2 weeks ago and don't waste your money. Both of mine were so dirty you could hardly see the mirror, so I took them apart to clean them and the wires popped off the board then the led came off the arm that held it up. I'm still going round and round with DX.
I ordered this one http://www.manafont.com/product_info.php/conqueror-mx008-supreme-recoil-q5-led-4mode-255lumen-memory-led-flashlight-p-4601
From manafont and it is way better than those other two, but double the price. When you hold it it feels solid not like the WF-008