Convoy S21D w/ legendary Nichia 219b :) - Review & comparison w/ Nichia 519a, E21a & other lights with Nichia LEDs incl. Emisar D4V2, Convoy S21F. (Summary & measurements on P. 1)

Lately they’ve been the Convoy 16mm light switch for convoy S2+ S2 C8 C8+ S21A.

In the past, they were the Astrolux SC/SS/S2/S3 BLF X5/X6 Flashlight 2LED Lighting Switch For DIY. The Astrolux used to be cheaper and I like how it has 2 springs, but adding a bypass wire to the Convoy switch is pretty easy.

All of them are modified since I usually don’t like the brightness of the stock, or I make my own unique colors by mixing different color LEDs.

A bleeder resistor is usually needed for the driver, but some of the Convoy drivers are compatible with lighted switches.

Here’s an example of a modified lighted tailcap and a pic of some of my lighted tailcaps:

@NeutralFan that’s a beautiful collection of tail lights :+1: . So even when you use the Convoy tail lights you replace its LED and modify it?

Wonder why manufacturers can’t do the same thing you do?

Quite simple:

- Cost.

  • Battery drain in the current Convoy configuration.

Cost = more components and man hours to have the LEDs soldered.
Battery drain = LEDs draw power. With the default config, 5-10mA is very high.

Keep in mind too that different drivers respond differently to lighted tailcaps. I need to use more resistance for the same amount of brightness with a Mountain Electronics MTN-DDm driver than with a Convoy SST40 driver.

And people have different preferences on how bright they want them to be.

But if you like modding your flashlights, lighted tailcaps is a fun (and sometimes challenging) sidebar!

Wont neccessarily work. I tried it with mine.

The rubber boot requires this black plastic “spacer”? Not sure exactly whats its called, but since its not clear, it completely blocks the light from being visable at all.

EDIT: Nevermind, I just seen the lighted switch comes with a clear version of the plastic ring.

Interesting to see how a frosted TIR optic smooths out the beam.
Upper is Emisar E21a 4500k with clear optic, lower is same Emisar with frosted optic.
(The 219b light has clear optic in both pics.)

Thx for this helpful post!

I’m new here, do you recommend the S21D or the D4v2?

You are going to get me in trouble answering this question. :innocent: There are a lot of passionate fans on either side of these 2 brands. I actually have more Emisar D4V2’s than Convoy S21D because Emisar offers 219b in multiple CCT choices, whereas Convoy only offers the most famous and popular one, 219b 4500k. Some considerations strictly IMHO-YMMV

Emisar D4V2: IMHO a “prettier” light than Convoy, with beautifully-done knurling and multiple colors and metal available (although the brass and copper versions are very heavy, almost too heavy). Smaller and fit very nicely in the hand. Battery 18650 so lower capacity. If you get this light don’t get the option of raised ring around the button (I really dislike it in use) unless you really need it to prevent accidental activation. D4V2 has Anduril UI which I much prefer to Convoy UI. Set at 55 max temp the central hotpot is brighter than Convoy at Turbo start, but after a couple minutes, step-downs occur and brightness begins falling behind Convoy and the beam covers a smaller area. I think this is due to the smaller thermal mass of the Emisar.
Convoy S21D: Bigger light & less expensive than Emisar. Does not look as nice as Emisar to my eyes but at 30 bucks I’m not complaining. 21700 battery a plus. The beam covers more area and stays brighter longer.

If I were to have just 1 light it would be Convoy S21D w/ Nichia 219b 4500k (aka sw45k) because of the 21700 battery and better brightness, but this is personal preference. Some people prefer D4V2 for reasons listed above. But why not get two lights: Convoy S21D 219b 4500k and Emisar D4V2 219b 3500k - this would be a great Nichia 219b start and IMHO 219b is a classic and will never become obsolete. Some examples of newer Nichia’s (E21a 4500k - very close but yellow greenish corona with clear optic, 519a 4500k - yellow tint; pictures and discussion previously in this thread) have not matched that legendary tint of 219b and I don’t think this will change.

Do you personally prefer 219b 45k or 35k?

Thoughts on 519a de-domed vs 219b 45k?

for me, sw45k is the gold standard
I recommend a Reylight Pineapple Mini in the metal of your choosing
or better yet a Jetbeam RRT-01 w an LED swap

I like 519a 4500K dedomed (it becomes 3400K), better than sw35

suggest a Convoy T3 with domed 519a 4500K, so you can compare it to sw45k, and then decide if you want to dedome the Convoy


I agree with Jon (who knows A LOT about different Nichia’s) that 219b 4500k is first light to get. Then add others, 219b 3500k, de-domed 519a, etc. as the hobby slips down the slippery slope and expands.

I think what Jon talked about (pls correct me as needed) is once you’ve de-domed 519a 4500k, the CCT goes down by around 1000, to 3500k, so the comparison should be de-domed 519a 4500k versus 219b 3500k. Then it is a matter of personal preference which one you like, not necessarily one is “better” than the other.

BTW personally I prefer 4500-5000k CCT not just in Nichia lights, but in all of my other lights. Higher CCT than 4500k then the beam color becomes too harshly bluish and depth flattens, lower CCT than 4500k then it gets too warm/yellow for my taste. The only exception is my super-thrower lights (Sofirn IF22a, the awesome Wurkkos TS30S, etc.), where for various reasons they are all higher CCT bluish.

I went way past my flashlight budget for the month BUT I’m willing to to grab a D4v2 in 3500k if the tint is really good lol

I currently have a S21D 219b/Pineapple-mini/Pineapple/T2 519a De-Domed/SC64LE/M150/LT1 Mini.

The S21D I really like overall except for the tailswitch/bulk….I’m sorta looking for a S21D with a Zebra size/switchUI, so I’m not sure if I should get the D4v2 in 4500k or 3500k

My fav tint so far is the Pineapple-Mini then the S21D, I would really like the 519a de-domed if it had more pinkness to it but unfortunately mine is more gold/yellow white

The S21D with a side e-switch would be nearly perfect if Convoy ironed out the few kinks in their e-switch UI.

If you already have S21D with 219b 4500k then there is no question I would get the D4v2 with 219b 3500. There is no need to have two 219b 4500k lights imho.

Nichia 219b 3500 has a rich saturated tint that is very nice to look at. It actually is not too yellowish despite of the lower CCT and makes 229b 4500k feel a little too harsh and 519b 4500k a little greenish in back to back comparison.

You would still choose the 219b 3500k over the E21 3500k?

I don’t have E21a 3500k so can’t comment. I do have E21a 4500k, and have compared it to 219b 4500k. But… whether 4500 versions translate to 3500 versions of these 2 LED’s, I do not know.

With white wall hunting E21a 4500 has a yellow greenish ring (see pic above) that 219b 4500 does not have. AFAIK this tint shift ring is why Hank uses frosted optic with E21a and clear optic with 219b. The frosted optic diffuses the ring and makes white-wall beam better looking, but then “hotspot” becomes a little too dim for my taste, and you could still see a hint of yellow tint shift. Having said that, in actual use, to my eyes E21a 4500 is very similar to 219b 4500 with frosted optic, but is greenish at periphery with clear optic.

At any rate for these reasons I do recommend 219b 4500k over E21a 4500 and see no reason to get E21a 4500 unless you see something that I have missed after SO much time wasted comparing :confounded: :slight_smile: . Get the 219b 3500k, it’s a fantastic alternative to 219b 4500k. Very warm, very pleasant beam color. I love it and wouldn’t want to be without it.

BTW, Carlo Optics for Emisar D4V2 fanboys like me lol/JK. I replaced the frosted optic 10623 in my E21a 4500k with clear 10622 and liked the brighter hotspot much better. I also have 10621 but haven’t had time or a reason to try it yet.

Hank uses frosted optic in E21a 4500k for sure, but I do not know if he uses it for other E21a’s CCT’s. He puts some kind of grey gluee stuff around the legs so be careful not to smear it on the lens. The gluee stuff makes it hard to get the lens out; just use the tip of a needle to pry it out at the edge. And careful with the lens, it falls out and cracks very easily :person_facepalming: .

The optics are very inexpensive and fun to play with. I ordered it at the same time I ordered the lights from Hank to save on shipping and avoid the excruciating wait for toys from China.

I replaced the optic in my S21D with the clear Sofirn optic and have found it much more useable so far as well.

I think more useable is subjective to the degree of the TIR lens itself… Any idea what is the degree of the Sofirn TIR?

I don’t think they state it directly but there is good info here including beam shots. That’s where I found out about it.