Are there any reasonably powerful hand lamps (thrower or “semi thrower”) currently on the market which use emitters with a high R9 value?
I’m quite new to this, but I understand that a high CRI value does not necessarily equate to a high R9 value and that emitters with a high R9 value tend to be not very powerful and seem to be more suitable for close-range photography or macro-photography.
I need a lamp which will illuminate an A4-sized object at 150 to 200 meters. Would that be over-optimistic for an emitter with a high R9 value (or multi high R9 emitters)? The light source needs to render the colour red as well as possible and make it stand out from the surroundings.
What is a4 size? Would a c8/c8+ host with a 219b or sst-20 be sufficient? Not sure what the r9 is on mine but I have an sst-20 s2+ with 8x7135 that throws surprisingly well. I would expect a very tight beam from the larger reflector.
A4 is a standard paper size, such as used in most consumer printers. It measures 21 x 29.7cm or (roughly) 8 x 12 inches.
I’ve just looked up SST 20 and it seems there are versions with very good colour rendering. I’ll look into it further, but I need to know how well the emitter renders the colour red. Even on the manufacturer’s website I haven’t been able to find an R9 value (unless I’ve missed it).
Maybe if you explained what you are trying to accomplish overall, instead of requesting specific bits and parameters, somebody may give a better idea or has done it already. I’ve found that joining groups for specific areas, many personal ideas are not original, and may be more popular than you think.
These are what I’m looking for. They are models of mountain trail markings which I quickly knocked together using paper and cardboard. I’m in the process of painting up some more permanent examples, using plywood and gloss paint.
On the left is a Swiss marking (henceforth: CH-Mark) and on the right a Norwegian marking (henceforth: N-Mark). In practice, some markings will be bigger than these, but many will be smaller. I decided on the A4 format for the Swiss and A3 format for the Norwegian as a happy medium, so that I could have standardised sizes for my own repeatable tests. In both cases, the red stripes have a width of 7cm (just under 3 inches).
In perfect conditions (cloudless sky, strong sunlight) I can spot and identify the CH-Mark at 250 meters and the N-Mark (which has no white) at 200 meters. In complete darkness, with my existing booster lamp, rated at 2,000 lumens maximum, I can identify the Swiss at 100 meters (but not at 110) and the Norwegian at 70 meters (but not at 75).
As it seems unrealistic to expect an artificial light source to give a greater range than that which I can see in good daylight, I have subtracted 50 meters from both the Swiss and Norwegian maximum daylight distances, so my expectation of the lamp is very specific: 200 meters for the Swiss markings and 150 meters for the Norwegian. This seems (to me) to be reasonable and realistic.
I sometimes use an 8 x 20 or an 8 x 42 monocular, but I’d prefer to get by without it.
I don’t see where he specified other than “a high R9”. The only things that beat the SST-20 for a flashlight emitter are the E21A and Optisolis, and for most people I’d wager the difference is negligible in real world use.
85-90 R9 is pretty damn high from a LED that can run at that output.
Bingo, they get real world results better than the “9080” rating of the Nichia emitters that are so lauded for their color rendering. The latter usually score above that too, but that just goes to show how well the SST-20 performs.
@OP: In Maukka’s test he was using a bench power supply for the express purpose of seeing how hard the emitter could be driven before it failed. I haven’t heard of anyone managing to kill an SST-20 with even direct drive flashlights.
For a red target, a C8 size flashlight with a high CRI SST-20 (why not go for 2700 Kelvin, less overall light but even more red than 4000K) is a bit small I think, maybe a Noctogon K1 is a better (but more expensive) option.
What you can try directly, without any DIY, is order the Nightwatch ND22 Seeker from Nealsgadgets, choosing the 3000K SST-20 led on the website. It is built well, throws very well (I know because I had one with this specific led before modding it), and has excellent R9. And it is relatively cheap at 26 dollar.
Reports are that Neal can be slow and uncommunicative at times, but personally I always had good experiences with his shop. Any experience with how his shop goes after the crisis?
It seems that the suitability of the Luminus SST-20 is beyond dispute. My next step would be to find it in a suitable hand lamp package.
Other properties I’m looking for in the lamp:
Waterproof: IP67 or IP68 (or at least water resistant IPX4).
Battery: As my headlamp takes two protected 18650 cells, ideally the booster lamp should take the same, so that they’re interchangeable, but any combination of 1, 2, 3 or 4 protected 18650 cells would be OK. A proprietary battery / battery pack is not acceptable. Note: The lamp will only be used during the summer mountain-touring season, i.e. end of June till end of October, and not in extreme cold.
Internal charger: The headlamp has an internal charger for its two cells, so if the booster lamp takes 1 or 2 cells then its own internal charger would not be necessary. For 3 or more cells, then an internal charger would be desirable, as the recharging would not normally be done at home on a “proper” charger.
Beam Width: As the lamp would be used for scanning an area for markings, a very narrow beam would not be too helpful, although I realise that too broad a beam (for the same power output) would reduce the range.
Format: I don’t mind going up to the size of those short, fat lamps which take a cage holding 3 or 4 x 18650 batteries and which have a large reflector. Maximum 4 x 18650.
Price: I know this is the “BUDGET” Light Forum, but I’ll go to the equivalent of 200 Euro, and if what I’m looking for proves hard to find I would extend that to 300 Euro.
-The suggestion of adding reflectors to the markers is a great idea. When walking at night sometimes streetsigns and reflectors on mailboxes are almost blinding even when my flashlight is set to a low level. VERY easy to spot.
-If 200ish meters is the farthest you’ll need I still think a C8 or similar-sized light is plenty. It gets you a wider, more useful beam than something larger than will focus an SST-20 to an even smaller, more intense hotspot
-Warmer color temps (2700 or 3000K) have better red rendering but 4000K will give more contrast between bright red and the colors around it in my experience. You don’t want to make everything around the marker more red/orange/yellowish to make them stand out
-Basically anything suggested here will be IPX7 or better so no worries there
-I’ve heard good things about the “Nightwatch” brand lights like djozz suggested. If you buy a Convoy C8+ you’d have to message Simon (Convoy owner) on Aliexpress and specifically request that LED be installed AFAIK so buying the light outright with the emitter selected is a nice benefit.
On the basis of the advice given here, I’ve decided on the SST-20, 4,000 Kelvin, High CRI emitter and have been searching the market for a multi-emitter lamp with an appropriately dimensioned power supply. The air seems to be fairly thin.
I looked (very briefly) at the Astrolux MF01S before moving on. This hasn’t stopped the retailer from following me around everywhere I go on the internet and reminding me that I looked at his product. I’ll clear the cookies when I don’t find it amusing anymore.
I took a much longer look at the Emisar D18 - and I’m still looking. The company seems to have a solid reputation and the lamp seems to fit many of my criteria. The price is well below my budget, although quality is more important to me than price.
Does anyone know how the situation stands with regard to production and supply in the light of the current crisis? I could, of course, ask the manufacturer directly, but there are for sure other members here who have ordered from them recently or have enquired about availability. If so, what has your experience been? Have they been able to give a realistic delivery time and keep to it?
Apart from that, is there anything comparable on the market that I might have missed in my search (same emitter, similar format, similar power supply)?
Why are you looking for something multi-emitter? More emitters means less reflector/optic real-estate for each one, reducing throw. The Emisar D18 struggles to reach out much beyond 300m on turbo, and that will heat the light up and make it step down quicky.
How much runtime do you need? You can get a very throwy light (still with a wide enough beam and bright enough spill to be useful) that runs on 18650 (C8+), the larger 21700 (M21A) or 26650 (L2) with an SST-20 from Simon at Convoy.