New light or new build SST-90 vrs HID

First let me say i know NOTHING about either types of lights, But my LED knowledge should be pretty universal with the SST-90's. I know some basics about HID's as my car has them, But beyond that its bunk.

I picked out 2 potential ways to go, Both from CNQ so if you have bad comments on them pls post them as this could get a tad expensive. Why is that HID light wich seems very high end compared to what MF and KD sells be so cheap? They are at least 2x-3x more at the places i just mentioned.

The SST sounds like fun and a challenge as id build it myself from parts, But in doing so could take alot longer if who ever i buy parts from decide i need to wait a month before they ship. So i wont be buying from DX for anything.

Im looking for high power with 65% throw and 35% spill as i dont really have a dedicated light like that. And i feel you cant get a good mix of throw and spill with low power like most throwers use. The SST will most likley end up costing about the same as the HID in the end as emitters are very expensive compared to the XML's im used to.

Im leaning towards the HID as if its what its advertised to be would blow the SST away, But at $125 something seems wrong. This low price is the only reason im contemplating HID as if this light is bogus the SST-90 is what ill build. Also i dont have to buy batteries with the HID but could buy spares but thats not necessary seeing how many other lights i have i could use instead.

SST-90 build host:


The HID price is not that much off from ebay prices if you include shipping. Seems like a decent deal. Note:

Output power: 28W/35W dual-power
Color Temperature: 6000K
Working time: 70minutes / 50W 100Minutes/ 38W

Not clear if actually 35w or "50w". The 50w might be input power. OTOH, they claim 4500lumens, so...

The SSR90, make sure the driver fits. Those big drivers >5A are double stacked and there's no photo on there to show dimension of driver compartment.

Or just go for the rational solution and buy both.

"Dual Power" 28w/'s 'two mode'.

If you are looking for a SST-90 host. I think the one on CNQ is not good in terms of throw. Is has a shallow reflector, it will result in much spill with the sst-90. Plus even with the xm-l it makes a weird outer ring. The reflector is 51mm*30mm

I recommend this host

all details are there and the accessories . (53mm*51.5mm reflector) I can give you Zach's e-mail address if you want to contact him.

Yes, but it's also 35/50 in addition to 28/35.

Looking at it further, they have another 28/35w model, so the specs on there are just wrong.

Hikelite- That host does look just as good externally and if it has a deeper reflector like you say ill head that way if i go with the SST-90 route.

The HID confuses me with its power rating, Its almost like it says it has 4 power settings like agenthex mentioned, And would have to be that way to put out 2000 more lumens than the light rated at 28w/35w.

So those prices are legit? I wonder why MF and KD are so much higher. Ill look at Ebay but it would have to be a USA deal as i don't like buying from Chinese retailers i don't know of their history like we know the usual ones we use.

I do see one issue, It says its 220v for recharging. Ive never looked but do they make 110v converters pretty cheap?

With the SST-90 you have to be careful at the tailcap, the resistance, some switches won't do 9A.

I am not sure about this but I think non-spring tailcaps are better than spring tailcaps when it comes to high current. Anyway in this case there's no spring in either host.

They all have the spring, the "springless" ones just have a cap over it.

Das, it's the 35/50w model. CNG sells the other weaker model, too, they just mixed up the specs.

Bro, get the 65W ones if you are interested. Cheaper...I have 2 units. I am getting 235k PBCP for throw. Lumens is ~ 4000 lumens as compared to a 2.5A XM-L @ 800L for reference. My timing is about 80 mins run time on high and with a bit of breeze it can survive through, i tested it multiple times. You may have to wrap the ballast up with foil if you do intend to run it long and on warm nights. These are the specs which you'd know, the others on the site are a bit off. This is more like the lowest performing models in the HID world, but for the price it is ok.

It is slightly more expensive to USA I guess. It's only 122 shipped via EMS here. You do get a nice alu box. Spare parts like spare batts and ballasts are available, not expensive as well.

But the beam profile of this kind of HIDs are less useful than those nice circular discs that you'd be used to LEDs. The advantage is that it is focusable and so it can flood as well as spot/throw, it floods really good so its useful for flooding 45 deg to say 50m, no LED can come close. Throw is not good in HID-speak but at 235k it is still decent. You can look at my beamshots at CPF. It is also doing 3S3P for Li-Co, the chargers charge to 12.4V so that's cool. You need to be aware of this because so many are very touchy. A Li Po safe bag solves the problem, charge outside if you want guarantees. Issue is discharge, there is no way of checking cell balance. I guess if it vents, fling it away.

But seriously, now with the advent of TK70 of the same form format and available from HKequipment at a nice price, i am not sure why aren't you going that way. You already have a hobby charger, 4 Tenergy cells are only 28 bucks.

BTW, EMS costs 36 bucks to here. I think its over 50 bucks to USA. This is for CNQ.

Thanks for letting me know.

How about going all the way bro? Get a re-con UPS. Semi-portable. Forget about what 60 x XM-L builds.


240,000 lumens from 8mm gap, 2500W. Or you get 30k lumens from 1mm gap. Compare with XR-E. Who's the daddy? And big ass reflector, simple pure physics.

From Guangzhou :

These are like the digital world. If you like analog warmth, there are also options. The beam is brighter than what is depicted in the video, check out the HPS streetlamps, so dim!

Carbon arc close-up

At a place near my home now they have about 20 waving around madly since its near our National Day Parade, and I think about 12 from a local hotel (Marina Bay Sands, parent company is Las Vegas Sands). 2 weeks ago it was stormy and raining, too bad I did not get the video, simply awesome. I don't have space for such stuff though, I live in an apartment. Something like this :

BTW when playing with high powered HIDs, be aware that the intensity can blind you, in addition to some UV risks. A collimated HID beam has fire risks as well. Treat them as if they are like lasers. Carbon arcs have CO poisoning risks as well.

This video shows nicely what a typical beam profile is Spill, big corona, small central hotspot.

2100- Those things are nuts! But not what im looking for, The search lights that is. The 65W one looks as good if not better than the 35w/50w but i gotta look deeper. Also you have a link to the review? I find CPF a mess to find info at times. Also does that 65W Hid do 110v on the charger as the AC input?

agenthex- I spent a few hours on Google last night researching the light and found it to be the 35W/50W when i saw a place advertise it and they didn't copy/paste the description like every other place does. But i gotta weight the costs as CNG charges shipping which i didn't realize.

I didn't mention this, But id like to keep the light between $125 - $150 no matter if its an SST-90 build or HID. The HID gains points as the cell comes with it and i only need one.

Ill look on our vendor section, But whats the word on and CNG as a company? Hopefully better than DX or ill forget using them, Same for CNG.

Looking at i can also get a 7800mAh battery for $30 more. Both are better than CNG's light and the price is about the max i was wanting to spend, But im not so sure the higher mAH battery is worth $30 extra. But buying a spare is about $60 with shipping.

US $168.45

110mins(45w), 80mins (55w), 60mins(65W)


US $138.94

130mins(45w), 100mins (55w), 80mins(65W)

BTW i dont like the TK70, Its just not a style i like.

Next i need to look into the SST-90 further and look at hosts and parts prices. As it should do pretty well running 2x 26650 IMR cells. Luckily they have just as high capacity as a Li-Ion cell.

If I were going to build an SST90 I would probably do it in a Mag with DW's heatsink and driver.

Das, don't go the 7800mAH route. Use the money to get a FF STL-V6 for $16 more. 6600mAH gives you 80 mins run time once the cells are cycled, more than enough. I actually have a 50W rated ballast which the 65W is quite a bit brighter and the 50W gives just below 100 mins run time. I have tested my 2 lights combined ~ 20 times already before buying a bunch for use in Indonesia now with nearly 500 man hours usage, i mean it is definitely > 70 mins reliably even after like 100 times recharges for each light now. Maybe it'd start to show signs of cell degradation/less runtime at 200-300h mark I don't know, but even then it has more than exceeded our expectations.

I have played with the SR91 (SST-90), forget about it.

We also have some Guangzhou Sanmak 55W 7" reflector (after minusing the bezel it is 6.25") throwers to do nearly twice the range at about 650k, but the runtime is pretty short at 40 mins.

But now we might be going the TK70 route. Luckily we did not go for a full lot with the Ebay/Aliexpress flashlight format HIDs. The thing about HID is not about warm-up, which is pretty fast if you can wait 10s. But the repeated ability to switch On, Off, On Off at your command, at 2000L, at 1000L etc. That saves power and also maintains "covertness". Hot-restrike is also bad for the bulbs, but of course for home use that is not an issue, and China bulbs at usd13 a pair of 55W that is no issue. If you are hunting/patrolling for people (LOL!) or animals then you may not want HIDs if you need the light a a whim's notice occasionally.

The thing about these Ebay/Ali lights and ballasts, is that 65W actually means 65W input, and more often than not if you get 60W then you are lucky already. It could be 55W nominal and 50W wouldn't be a surprise for me. I have got some auto ballasts which are way off, some are way under and some are over. But the cells seem to be decent, it is a 3S3P config inside with 18650s, 2200mAh each cell but probably some 2Ah in reality. That is why it can still do 80 mins. The specs are off, as usual, but fear not so are the SR90/SR91. :) look at this first in your home country.

the 6" reflector one is the famous Amondotech 3152 (back in 2005/2006). The Mega has a 8 or 9" reflector I think.

BTW, can i ask at your local K or Walmart or any hunting store etc, how much can you get the Costco Thor X colossus? That one with the 9" reflector. Just get a 100W ballast/bulb kit (1 pair - very rarely can you get 1 piece) for 100 bucks and be done with it, you'd get 2 million lux @ 1m easily.

I've never actually seen that light at costco as of late (since getting into the hobby), but I would imagine something like that uses a h3/standard bulb would be available somewhere for similar prices to amazon. Basically ~$50 + hid parts, but some labor to make everything fit and work well, and even then you're left w/ a SLA battery that you have to maintain unless you want to spend even more $ and effort.

Personally, if I'm going to spend the time to make something custom, I'd go for silvering out a parabolic dish and making something like superlight above. Even with a normal led at the the focal point, it'd be pretty epic.

Wow, This is kinda overwhelming atm.

Id like to restate im aiming for 65% throw and 35% spill configuration, And a large cell setup like the 22650 or 32600 2x-3x cells. But the HID has the large cell pack which is ok also.

BUT, The hid takes the fun out of building it. That is building something that fits in a normal flashlight form factor.

Also building an SST-90 will cost as much if not more than the Hid to build and im not sure it will even compete power wise.

Im also a budget guy at heart, Even tho i do like to try the higher end stuff as long as i can justify the extra expense. I know im getting bored with putting XML's in everything, Well kinda as i like upgrading smaller lights to run brighter and more useful.

Ive been thinking about one thing and that is i rarely get to use my lights outside the house, And i doubt a 65W HID light is good for interior home use. But id still like a thrower. Maybe i should look at a recoil thrower? And also get the 26650 light from CNG either as an SST-50 and upgrade it as i go or buy the host by itself, As the electronics are worth the extra $22 if i gut it.

Ill be honest my head has been a mess lately so until i get that clear and working well i have the cash waiting.