$40 is the magic # because that's what the original BLF group buy price was, think no extra for shipping, tax, etc. We were paying that or more for the junky SRK's. The closest thing to it was the SupFire M6, reviewed here, but only had 3 LED's, had the nice SS bezel and was built like a tank (heavy) like the Q8. We really modeled the Q8 after the M6, but with 4 LED's, lighted switch, our custom driver/firmware of course. Cheapest M6 around was $45, maybe...
The really bad thing about the Q8 launch is it put Richard at Mtn Electronics out of the modded M6 business, because he sold a modded M6 for about $70 I think, that was very close to what the Q8 is. Not sure if he ever forgave me for that...
The Q8 was early in the "custom modded light for the masses from China" craze we are all experiencing and benefitting from today, where we design or help design a light, then they make it in China. Can't say it was the first - others preceded it.
What options do we have for non-destructively adding tripod threads to sodacan lights? I used to use those photography magic clamps back in the day for smaller lights, but the diameter on these bigger lights would need much larger clamps, which really starts to bulk things up…
Succinctly summed up four years of forum comments and development into one beautiful sticky-worthy paragraph. I think it would be neat to see more drivers support lighted tailcaps, too, and if possible it'd be cool to be able to choose whether they lit power-on or power-off. This is pretty much UI perfection here with or without extras added in.
I agree with all this but there’s still a few more niggles with the Convoy ramping UI that stop me from using it over basic stepped modes.
This is based on using the M3-C with ramping and comparing to Narsil / Anduril. I’m not sure if the ramping UI has changed since last year.
Ramping must include moonlight too, not just low.
Faster blink to indicate end of ramp. Or no blink at all.
No direction memory after a couple of seconds. M3-C will always ramp the opposite way to last time, even after a long time or being off. Should always ramp up from off or after being left on for a bit. Should only be able to ramp down soon after a ramp up (or from 100%)
Always ramp down from 100%. M3-C does nothing (probably tries to ramp up) from turbo if you last ramped down, then double clicked.
Add “tap and hold” to change ramp direction. M3-C requires you to hold for it to start ramping before it will ramp the other way.
True, the details, or subtilties of the UI implementation is where the quality shows and usually where the mimics let you down. All the more reason to consider the originals. Wish I could see the cost difference in the drivers, but Anduril doesn't have to be a FET+1, it supports buck and boost drivers, and other designs as well.
keeping more or less the same layout for interactions (1C on/off, 4C lockout, 2H ramp down, ...)
optimized timing settings for clicks, blinks etc. as we know it from Andúril
logarithmic ramping curve (more linear to the human eye's perception)
optimized thermal regulation based upon predefined settings in source code
If Simon even were to provide flashing pads on his drivers, customers could conveniently flash their own firmware onto Convoy flashlights (NarsilM, Andúril 1/2, this "basic UI" shown below, ...). If he even were to use the new AVR-1 chips (816, 1616, 3216) he could benefit from factory-calibrated voltage and temperature readout.
All it takes is:
some helpful member(s) doing the necessary changes on the source code (this started to happen on the above mentioned thread already)
a manufacturer willing to invest a few days of time and willing to step up to a more sophisticated but simply-kept user interface
On a side note:
Unfortunately, I have not succeeded in winning over some of the popular manufacturers I am familiar with for this UI, no matter how hard I tried. Their initial and overwhelming interest has finally gone into oblivion.
Lux-P - that UI looks awesome. I would be in! Looks like all you need. Great for the Convoy brand, as a basic but intelligent UI and Operarion. And of course then if users wanted they could flash whatever UI they like, too.
I don't see a downside.
simon has seemed open to new and more out of the box things, I see him looking into (with much help from educated users) a tint ramping 4x led with optics edc option.
I think a UI like this would be PERFECT for that new light.
Honestly, I just rubber band my soda can light to a tripod, with a pair of thick rubber bands like the kind that grocery stores use on celery bunches, without the mounting plate and thread in the way. A cotton rag helps keep it from slipping. It is neither very solid nor pretty, but it is easy and quick.
It would not be difficult to go a step further and put a 1/4-20 thread in an aluminum plate, then glue or screw a saddle to the plate for the light to sit in, with tabs to attach the rubber bands to.
I have seen some bike mounts that look like they could be adapted to fit some soda cans, but nothing that would work right off the shelf.
The 3x21A compared to a Q8 with 4 XP-L's discounted at $40 is not a great deal for $60. I hope the bezel is SS for this price, can't tell from the listing, but don't think Simon ever used bare alum for a bezel like this. But still, you do get Convoy quality of the anodizing, threads, etc.
Could use a tripod mount too.
im not being stupid here (not trying to be), but I always see people mention the Q8 for prices like in the $40 range but I've never seen them for that, where could you find such a deal? I don't own one but becoming more and more interested in trying one. Mostly because blf did the light. Thanks in advance!
Artiet59, actually it was you and your great beamshots that convinced me to order 3X21A with SFT40 6500K. Those pictures you took outside look really great. I was afraid the tint may look AngryBlue™ but it seems alright and rather neutralwhite. :+1:
Thanks for the helpful hint about the P42A’s raised flat top. Maybe I will not even need the adapter as you said. However, it might turn out to be useful if I chose to put in some Samsung 50G or 40T batteries. I think I will not mind some “serious marks” since this adapter is hidden inside the light anyway. My only concern would be that some of the plastic material could be scraped off while being in contact with the brass ring. Never mind, I may sound like someone subject to OCD already, haha.
Simon: Could you please handpick the best looking flat top adapter for my order of 3X21A (ordered today with some pouches, order ID 3011866015422654)? :P 谢谢！:)
I got the Astrolux EA01 (single SST40 5000K only) and I was quite surprised about the nice beam. I am still torn about buying another EA01S like yours…should I, shouldn’t I? :-)) I really look forward to seeing your beamshots of the EA01S with 4x SFT40. Must be some amazing pocket thrower with a big hotspot. I wish I had some soldering skills but I was born with two left hands, lol. Fingers crossed that SFT40 5000K will soon be available.
All adapters have traces of processing, so I can’t choose them for you. But I promise you that when the new adapter is available, I will give you two for free, it is very cheap.
Convoy drivers are quit ok. Simon only needs to tune ramping speed in smooth ramp (fast on low/slow on high) and also in 4mode (too slow)
I first try to slow down the entire process of ramping, and the entire time will be doubled.
If this method is not ideal, the ramping speed below 50% current remains unchanged, and the ramping speed above 50% current becomes slower.
Regardless of what you think of Anduril 1/2 the best thing to come from how that played out is that we now have open source firmware and flashing keys.
I guarantee if Simon made all his future drivers use a similar flashing key and had the firmware built on some common (open) architecture someone would branch out his work and fix most of the small issues these drivers tend to have in their first revisions. (for free!)
His drivers are becoming advanced and powerful enough that (besides Tom E :innocent: ) there is less incentive/value to throw in a FET+1 with Narsil/Anduril.
Merchants and flashlight enthusiasts have different ideas, because imitation is too popular in China, and it becomes difficult to open the code.
I just ordered the 3x21A SST40 5000K. Would like to know if the XHP-50.2 is a future product? I like extra lumens, slightly more flood. At 21 amps a triple should push just over 8,000 lumens. Or a single SBT90.2. I like the triple 21700 format over the quad 18650 and would like to stick to this one for mods and improvements. No real reason why, but I do.
As far as the machining marks on the flat top adapter, I like them. It adds a little more character to the light.
I haven’t seen a recent e-switch UI light from Simon, so not familiar. Reading through the UI described for the 3x21A, it sounds pretty decent but assuming it’s not using the switch LED though, accept for charging I guess. The remaining issue with the UI is timing, and that can’t be documented easily, best to try it, so I ordered the light and will see myself.
I have the following plan: when the flashlight is turned on, the color of the light on the button or the number of flashes represents the current power.
In order to avoid affecting the use, the light on the button goes out after 5 seconds.