Interest collect for a new Sofirn design: tube style18650, magnetic ring control, USB-C charging, 500 lm max (AKA grandma light)

I would be interested for two or three people I know. These would make great Christmas presents, maybe next year. A magnetic ring would not be mandatory, as long as the UI was super simple, but absolutely no strobes on this one. A lighted LED switch, or some sort of indicator, not bright, would be a great addition. Just thoughts at this point.

Thanks all for the interest and the suggestions sofar.

Being the starter of this thread and the contact with Sofirn, combined with my idea that I have gained some knowledge about flashlights over the years :innocent: , I reserve the right to acknowledge or ignore suggestions for this light, but I will try to tell my reasons.

@Jack, :beer: for the poetry

@hank, no strobes, they may be useful for some, but annoying or rightout confusing for most. And this light must be ultimate simple and predictable. A warmer than 5000K led would be a nice option, but that can with no problem be discussed at the end of the process. I doubt that amber will be an option, but some of us are able to swap it in :slight_smile: . Btw, this light has the working title “grandma light” but is not aimed specifically at eldery people, I think that all sorts of people will find it handy.

@Lightbringer: one aspect that makes this light different from the Xiaomi light is that it must attract flashoholics too, the Xiaomi light having no waterproofing is a straight no-go for a flashaholic, and I also think it must simply be suitable for outdoors. (the Xiaomi light is ugly too, but that is an opinion of course).
About the magnetic ring: Sofirn is familiar with them, it is in a couple of diving lights, so it is easy to ask for that. Personally I find it more elegant than a slider too, and I find the type that Sofirn use very light to operate (but I have no arthritis yet). My DF10 with the ring in off-position uses 77 micro-amps, emptying a battery in 4 years.

@Noctiluco, no tail switch, sorry.

@Photonica, modding the driver will be difficult indeed, but Sofirn lights are not glued in general so swapping leds should be an option.

Yes, Jack, cheers. I haven’t read one of you poems in too long.

Any way to get a lower max so muggles don’t blind themselves. AA battery as possible power source? Or at least extremely robust low voltage protection. The kids will run it down…


I’ll stick with giving away the existing SF13 (2xAA) light.
The only people I know who don’t like the hidden strobe are flashoholics.
In the SF13, the strobe is 2-fast-cicks away, a decently simple UI, liked by my friends among the elderly who need to be noticed in crosswalks.
I’ll go ahead and modify those with amber LEDs, since the board is easily accessible.

As always in for one and maybe 2 depending on final outcome of specs.

I want at least two

Good points i.m.o.

As others have said, and i’m not a grandma either, it would be very nice to have stepless dimming (and without PWM) by a thumb wheel or slider.

Sure, you could make it click (with ‘detentes’) in 4 positions (OFF - LOW - MID - HIGH), but if you use only 1 hall sensor, it will probably determine the output level according to the magnetic field it senses anyway, so the positions in between the clicks will be brightness levels in between the 3 ON positions.

It doesn’t have to start at some silly firefly mode, especially for the elderly, which can make you think you have turned it off, like the Sofirn SP10A for example…

The only reason i have never bought a thumb slider diving light is because of the PWM they all seem to have…

But for the user interface it’s far more natural, physically and psychologically and also ‘old fashioned’ to switch the light on and off with your thumb by moving a button forward and backwards.

So i.m.o the ease of use for the elderly (and in fact for anyone) would not be optimal with a twisty ring.

…and that’s my 2 cents…

I’m a big fan of flashlights with magnetic control ring. Definitely interested.
Regards Frank

IMO, the only drop-dead simple light, which is a no-brainer for anyone to use, is one that is either on or off using a clicky switch.

A rotary switch with three distinct levels of brightness, starting on Low, then Med and then High seems to me, to be the next simplest thing and has the big advantage of three levels. 50 - 200 - 500? Everything else is just confusing if you are not a flashlight freak.

A TIR sounds okay to me as I do not think the intended user base needs a light for throw. They want to find stuff in a dark place, see where they are about to place their feet when walking, etc.

USB charging is a big plus. A C-type port with resistors :slight_smile: Behind a rubber flap has the advantage of being visible and may be better for the memory impaired. ? Just a thought?

I can think of two people/places I would use them.

I’ve had 2 lights with magnetic ring switching and i didn’t like it at all.
Tended to need 2 hands for turning it on.
They were not the best examples of ring twist switch lights though, so maybe i’m biassed.


A sensible and well built flashlight for the masses. No crazy UI’s, no ridiculous blinkies, it won’t set puppies on fire and you can give it to anyone. I am wickedly pleased to hear this voice of reason. Don’t hide any modes anywhere. The more you try to hide the more complicated it becomes. We all have lights that are overly complicated and too bright for their own good.

This is the single best post of 2019. Why? It’s reasonable and logical, both seem to get lost in a sea of hot rods and overpriced lights. djozz, I salute you sir. Put me down for half a dozen.

Don’t you or Sofirn bend on the shear simplicity of such a light. TIR would be sufficient for most but, it would be nice if you could swap in a OP or pebbled TIR if you so choose. Still not a deal breaker.

@hank, My Jetbeam RRT01 has a hidden strobe by two fast rotary twists to max, and while fiddling with the light it unwantedly comes on (no problem for me, I know what happens). And fiddling is something that non-flashoholics are far better at than we. I want this light to have no surprises for the users.

@jerommel, the 10 lumen lowest mode is easy to see, well above firefly, a good reading level.
I have no objection to infinitely variable but for this (budget) light it is a luxury I think. But once the design starts (in case we ever reach 1000) I will ask if it can be done without adding costs. I know that Sofirn makes stepped magnetic drivers, I do not know about infinitely variable.
About a slider: since this light must appeal to flashoholics too, not just arthritic eldery people :innocent: , IMO a magnetic ring is a much nicer choice and easy enough for almost everyone.
Btw, I still must send you the Luminus Cube leds :person_facepalming:

@MtnDon, I will ask for the resistors, that seems not like it is making anything more expensive. The USB port behind a flap may prove easiest and cheapest in the end for Sofirn anyway, but I still hope for a less ugly and robust solution.

In for two. The details of final design are less important to me than the fact it is made with “grandma” in mind… you guys and Sofirn will do your best with that. BTW, the waterproof ness is not mentioned in the specs. Looking forward to a great “gift light.”


The waterproofness is not mentioned but since all our flashlights and all Sofirn flashlight have that I think it is not needed to mention. It is mentioned that this light is based on the SC31 which is waterproof.

Is it possible to use an almost stepless dimming as on an Imalent headlamp?

If the thumbwheel/ring/whatever were oversized, either heavily-knurled or at least knobby, and ideally a contrasting color from the body, then it should work for gramma.

Yep. That’s why I gave my gf my ’10A, as it’s one of the older/original ones that goes l/m/h and 2click for strobe, vs my ’10B which is f/l/m and 2click for h and 3click for strobe. There were times I had to look and see if it were off or just in firefly mode, so didn’t want to burden her with always having to check it.

But why?
I think there are definitely nicer twisty ring lights on the market than there are slider lights on the market, and the slider travel is often quite short (maybe a limitation of the 1 single hall sensor they use?)

My limited experience with twisty rings (2 lights i took apart long ago, one i actually threw in the trash, which i never do otherwise) was not positive.
With one of them i needed 2 hands, and the sideways movement of the thumb is less natural and less powerful than the forward / backward movement, but i can only guess that’s also the case with arthritic hands (i’m not that old yet, so i don’t know…).

I’ll send you something in return when i get them. :slight_smile: