Balder SE-1 or Xeno E03? (Both are within a couple bucks of each other and both are now Xml so- which to get?)

You can see the archived poll results on the Wayback Machine:

Looking at this one: (Balder SE-1 XML)

or this one: (Xeno E03)

For the same money, Xeno is a better buy.

The Balder is usually $6-$10 less expensive, and shows it in the fit and finish.

Depends what your needs are. The Balder will give you a LOW low while the Xeno is brighter on high (not a ton). To me, each light has its own strengths and weaknesses but generally even out in comparison. Based on over all performance, I would prefer the SE-1 because of the low mode, but be aware that there have been driver issues on a few so far so it could be hit or miss. If you don't need a low low mode then you're probably safe with the Xeno. I'm satisfied with the fit and finish of the SE-1.

I only had an issue with the driver on the XP-E and my two XM-L versions have been fine. Ric is sending me a replacement driver. HOWEVER, Balder replaced the entire flashlight after just one email to them. The only problem is they sent an XM-L version instead of XP-E. I didn't really complain because I got a replacement from the manufacturer with no hassle and I'm already getting a driver from the vendor anyway. Hopefully I'll end up with a free flashlight out of the deal

I agree with weiser701: Both lights have their strengths and weaknesses, but I like them equally. Earlier I liked Xeno more, but now I have noticed that I use Balder more often. Depends on my mood, I guess..

When it comes to output, beam and tint, I would say that they are separated at birth. I can't see much difference in them, really.

Quality in Xeno might be a bit better, but I don't have anything bad to say about my Balder either.

Main differences:

Balder SE-1 Xeno E03
Clicky Forward Reverse
Mode order H-M-L M-L-H
Low mode with 14500 Low "Quite high"
Clip included Yes No

All of these can be considered as pro or con (based on your needs), so there's no clear winner.

=> Buy both. ;)

I agree that it's a tough call to make depending on what you want to use it for and what features are priorities. Also, are you planning on running primarily on 14500 or will you be all nimh and alkaline?

Just want to add a few things more ;)

Balder SE-1 Xeno E03
Size (official) 102x24 mm 96.5x21.5 mm
Weight (official) 40 g. 48 g.
Memory Yes No
Momentary ON Yes No

I don't have Balder, but looks like a very nice light. I like my Xeno... but can someone post beamshots on MAX with 14500? Want to see those beam profiles. Thanks in advance.

I sold off my Balder but kept my Xeno. I do miss the forward clicky but that's it.

The Xeno is only missing a permanent clip like the nitecore EX11/D11 one. I really really dislike the Balder clip.

Many Xenos had crappy switches..hence the xtra switch in the package.


Love my xeno, had it for about 4-5 months now. I liked it so much I bought a second one and haven't even opened it up, just keeping it as a spare. I do agree the switch should be higher quality, but thats really the only downside.

Did you guys forget to mention the xeno has square threads? or does the balder have square threads also?

Both are also available in Neutral-white T5.

Yeah, it feels cheapy, but mine works very well ATM. I'd paid 50c. more for a better switch for sure.

Nope (Matts pic)

BTW, don't know why, but I prefer anodized threads. Feels better and smoother to me.

Xeno E03 does not use PWM, not even 5kHz. I wasn't able to measure any. That is a major issue for quite a few flashaholics, and usually for 30 bucks lights you definitely get visible PWM.

Also E03 has NW and WW options.

Anyone know where we can get replacement switches for the Xeno?

'Tellin ya, just remove the switch from the tail and soak that bad boy in wd-40. It works like a charm (no replacement needed).

I would be interested in a forward clicky though....

Thanks man :) I just got mine a few days ago and I'm loving it so far. Got my 14500's today and I'm charging them. Can't wait to see how bright this thing can get!

Are you sure it works?

Of course :)

I don't have either ...


I'd buy the xeno

I'm always right :P

I also dont have either...but I do like the Xeno due to the awesome looking blue color it had. Black gets a bit boring all the time...