[Review] - Convoy M21F GT-FC40 4500k - By Argo

  1. Disclaimer
  2. Premise
  3. Introduction
  4. Packaging
  5. Materials, assembly, processing, finishes, anodizing
  6. Specifications
  7. User interface
  8. User experience
  9. LEDs, light output and beamshots
  10. Conclusions
  11. Aspects Positive
  12. Negative Aspects
  13. Neutral Aspects
  14. Final Score

1) Disclaimer

If my English is good, you can congratulate me. If my english is bad, you can blame google translate :D

Mine is a review focused on usage impressions, for measurements and other technical data I refer to other reviews and other sites.

M21F was sent to me directly by Convoy for review.

To purchase

More and more often I find myself using flashlights during my excursions or in daily life, therefore I define myself as a user who has also become passionate over time.

In addition to indicating objective data and measurements, I will always try to be very clear in highlighting strengths and weaknesses, in explaining the impressions during use and what I would like to see or obtain.

All photos, info, measurements, unless otherwise indicated, are my own work. I do all this because I enjoy it, mine is a hobby and a pleasure, in life I do anything else, so I apologize in advance to the professionals of the sector, to the enthusiasts and to the simple users for the mistakes that surely are and will be present in mine pages. If you notice errors, typos or have other reports to make, please let us know, I will be happy to update my pages with your reports.

2) Premise

I am always looking for the torch that best meets my needs and this Convoy M21F with Led GT-FC40 4000-4500k seems to be a great candidate.

A model that I find very balanced, with the right compromise between:

  1. dimensions
  2. flood beam but with a decent shot
  3. excellent color rendering
  4. neutral color temperature
  5. charging port
  6. good runtime

3) Introduction
Convoy is a well-known brand among flashlight enthusiasts, it offers a decent lineup of products, where the individual models are often customizable for LEDs, dishes, switches, charging ports, anodizing colors and UI.
Customization and varied models are certainly an advantage for those with clear ideas, because it allows you to choose and sew the instrument on yourself, but at the same time it can create confusion among newbies.
The manufacturer does not have a proper website, the flashlights are on sale on 3 channels: Convoy AliExpress Store, Banggood, Nealsgadgets.

Before starting the review it is good to frame this model within the Convoy offer:
We are in group M, that is torches in "medium size" that are placed between the S and L series.

Within the M group in the M21 subcategory we find several elements.
What I report below an infographic posted to this address

Convoy M21 series

by user u / TacGriz; I want to publicly thank him for creating this very intuitive infographic.

The M21F can be ordered with different LEDs and in different color temperatures.
• GT-FC40 1800-2000K; 3000-3200K; 4000-4500K; 5000-5500K
• SFT40
• XHP70.2 3000K; 4000K; 5000K; 6500K

4) Packaging:
The Convoy comes in a spartan packaging: a white cardboard, with an adhesive label that shows the torch model and the type of LED mounted and inside the bubble wrap to wrap only and exclusively flashlight with battery inside (Litokala Lii 50E 21700 5000mah) and a black cord.

5) Materials, assembly, processing, finishes, anodizing:
The first thing I thought when I unwrapped the package was: beautiful!
The shapes, the dimensions, the color, the chromatic combinations and the millings make this product particularly captivating in my eyes.
The material is aluminum series 60.
The anodization is gray-blue, almost an aviation gray, which I find particularly successful.

embattled, in stainless steel, well worked and finished, does not have glue on the thread: unscrewing it to access the dish and the LED is a very simple operation.

Tempered mineral lens with anti-reflective treatment. When viewed against the light, the anti-reflective treatment appears red-violet, i.e. certain wavelengths are rejected.

classic reflector in turned aluminum, with orange peel finish.

It starts with a knurling under the bezel, it continues with milling, always well finished, which draw progressively deeper cooling fins that increase the heat exchange surface.
Below these we find the neck, of smaller diameter, with regular shaped and sized fins, the switch and the usbc charging port.
The switch: a small electric blue bezel surrounds the dotted silicone button and in the central part we find a new ring, this time transparent, which allows you to observe the color of the status LEDs that provide information on the battery charge status: red for low battery o in charge and green to signal the end of the charging process.
The stroke of the switch is quite short.
Finally we find the brand logo and the model name , both printed and centered excellently.

The charging socket is surmounted by an easily removable rubber cap, thanks to the special tab.

The USB-C port is slightly misaligned with respect to the milling on the aluminum body, however the cable fits easily, without problems.

the lugs become low and close together to give an excellent grip to the grip, arranged in 6 blocks and separated by longitudinal grooves.

in this segment, the milling process passes from transverse to oblique and there are grooves and backs arranged at 45 degrees. We find 4 holes for the passage of the lanyard, or if desired, it could be possible to install a clip using screws and nuts.
The magnet is absent, while the frame beyond the holes is flat and regular and allows you to safely position the flashlight vertically.

All of good workmanship, there are no burrs or machining defects, the segments screw very smoothly and easily. A light layer of fat is pre-applied.

3 silicone o-rings: one under the glass, one between head and body and one between body and tail.

a classic and anonymous black lanyard.

6) Specifications:

LED: Getian GT-FC40
DUV +0.00215
Ra 93.2
R9 76
R12 70
Lumen 2000-2500
12V pilotato dal driver con corrente massima a 2,5 A

Material: 60 series aluminum alloy (specification not present on model page)
Low voltage warning: yes
Reverse polarità protection: yes
Lens type: anti-reflective tempered glass
Reflector: orange peel
Switch position: head
Memory: yes
Tail stand: yes
Driver output current: 2.5A
Maximum charge current: 2A
CRI: R9050
Lumens: 2000-2500LM
Battery: Litokala 21700 5000mAh
Size: Head/body/tail diameter: 40mm/27.5mm/29.5mm
Length: 143.8 mm
Torch weight without battery: 145g
Warranty: 1 year (this specification is not present on model page)
Water Resistance: IPX4 (this specification is not present on model page)

7) User Interface:
From flashlight off:
• Long press to enter moonlight mode
• Single click: goes directly to the memory level, both in ramp and steps mode.
• Double click: turbo
• Triple click: strobe
• 4 click: enter tactical mode: when the switch is pressed it goes to 100%. To exit this mode, click again 4 or disconnect the battery.
• 5 clicks: voltage reading
• 6 clicks: switches from ramp to step mode
• 10 clicks: flashlight lock

From flashlight on:
• Long press: increases or decreases the light intensity on the ramp, or goes up and down the steps (1% 10% 40% 100%)
• Single click: turn off
• Double click: turbo
• Triple click: strobe
• 5 clicks: reading of the voltage
• 6 clicks: switches from ramp to step mode

• Moonlight: long press with the torch off
• Turbo: 2 clicks both with the torch off and on
• Strobe: 3 clicks both with the torch off and on

Warning LED positioned in the switch:
• When the voltage drops below 3V, the LEDs will flash red.
• During recharging the LEDs will flash red
• When fully charged the LEDs will flash green

8) User experience:
As already written, the flashlight is aesthetically appealing, so the first impact was certainly positive.
Quite compact and balanced, it is very pleasant to hold.
The switch is at the right distance to be operated.
The grip, thanks to the particular workmanship of the body, is always excellent and there is no danger that the flashlight could accidentally slip.

It can be used vertically either sitting on the bezel or sitting on the cap and in both cases it is very stable.

There is a slight movement of the supplied battery inside the body of the flashlight, it is not annoying, but you can notice it if you pay attention. I do not know if this aspect is a defect due to the abundant tolerances or if it is a value that takes into account minimal variations in diameter from battery to battery and any thermal expansion.
The switch is almost flat, has little travel, while a slightly above average pressure must be exerted to operate it, again nothing to worry about, they are simply characteristics of this model.
The aspect that gave me some difficulties at the beginning was the user interface which requires very fast clicks and it is not always possible to access the menu at the first try, but after a little practice, everything becomes simpler and faster.

The interface is quite complete, but I would have preferred Anduril for its strong customization skills, because I tend to use the flashlights with the step mode and in this case the 10% -40-100% spacing is not to my liking, so as almost always I set a higher stepdown temperature than the default one and in this case it is not possible to change it.
Sometimes it happened to me to press the closing cap of the USB port, instead of the switch, so I would have liked to have had the status LEDs always on as a visual reference.
The heat management takes place when the threshold temperature set at 55 degrees is reached, the stepdown occurs after 3-4 minutes from the insertion of the turbo but it depends on the environmental conditions. Compared to models like the M21D, the M21F being compact has a lower dissipation capacity and will go into stepd-down sooner.
In daily use it is an excellent all-rounder, excellent beam, tint, color temperature, autonomy.

I really appreciated being able to use the flashlight normally, even at 100%, while charging.
Given the dimensions and weight, all in all contained, it could be used without problems, even on a helmet or on the shoulder of a backpack.

9) Led, light output and beamshots:
Last but not least we come to the crucial aspect of each flashlight: led and light emitted.

The led is a Getian GT-FC40, without dome, made up of 16 units arranged in 4 rows of 4.
From the photo you can see how the 16 units have minimal color variations, but I don't think this particular aspect has practical confirmation.

Powered by 12V, on the product page the seller reports a maximum light output of 2000-2500 lumens with 2.5 A.
These values ​​are in line with the test conducted by the user Djozz on budgetlightforum at this address https://budgetlightforum.com/t/-/58362

DUV +0.00215
Ra 93.2
R9 76
R12 70
immediately show what we have in front of us: an excellent source of neutral light with high color rendering and excellent performance on reds, which is the sore point of many LEDs.
These are the measurements I made, on 18% gray cardboard and 100% brightness.

In this sector the reference is for many (myself included) the Nichia 219B 4500k
Ra 96
R9 97
R12 7
DUV -0.0095
And in this case, the GT-FC has a very close yield to the Nichia, they are very similar and it is difficult, if not impossible to recognize them with the naked eye.
As for color rendering, I consider Nichia just superior to Getian, but the latter has two significant advantages: shooting and power.

beam I find the light beam really centered for this type of flashlight, a fairly large and bright spill, very useful in short distances, with a fairly large (but not very wide) and very bright spot.
To understand how the beam fits in the lineup, just think that the M21F is halfway between the M21B which is more flood and with a less bright spot and the M21E which has more shooting, with a narrower and brighter spot. The size and depth of the parable plays an important role in these differences.
The beam does not have concentric rings or color variations, except for a very light, slightly more pink crown that surrounds the spot.
Neutral white color temperature (my favorite), almost total absence of dominants and concentrated rings, excellent color rendering, especially on reds, make the light emitted very pleasant and pleasant to use the torch, especially in natural environments where it is important to distinguish the colors and have the right contrast and the right depth of field.

I really like the light emitted by this flashlight.
I consider this Getian one of the best LEDs, if color temperature and chromatic yield are fundamental and essential aspects for us, if instead we are interested in brute power and shooting, it is better to focus on something else.

Here are some shots in the natural environment, in the use that best suits this torch, or generalist, suitable for trekking and therefore to illuminate paths, your garden, to take the dog out, as a light point on the handlebar of a bike, on a helmet or on a shoulder, as a backup flashlight, as a flashlight for photographic purposes or for use indoors. In these contexts nothing to complain, I find it perfect.

On the outside, all the good things that had been seen inside are confirmed.
Here are some shots at 30 meters to evaluate the steps 1% -10% -40% -100%.

To finish a shooting test, with a target at 100m: the target is reached and illuminated quite easily.

Moving the target to 150 meters, the lighting becomes dim, so although I am able to reach this distance, I consider 100-125 meters to be the real range, of maximum shooting of this unit.

10) Conclusions
I liked this Convoy very much, although it is not without defects. I think it is difficult to find something similar with this led, with this performance at around 38 euros shipped (32 euros without battery) with discount coupon at the end of the review. Convoy models are improving over time and this M21F with some small adjustments could have been a real best-buy, however the defects it presents are considered venial sins.

11) Positive aspects:
1) The substance is all there: light beam, tint, color rendering, power, there is no question. The GT-FC40 LED is really impressive, because it comes very close to the infamous Nichia 219B but it goes to fill some flaws such as power and shooting.
2) The aesthetics: I find it captivating
3) For me one of the definitive handyman flashlights
4) Ability to use it at maximum power while charging
5) Easy to disassemble, it lends itself easily to modding
6) Customer service was quick and fast , in replying to my messages.

12) Negative aspects:
1) The user interface: I would have preferred Anduril for customization
2) Water resistance: in the sales data sheet it is not declared, the customer service communicated to me IPX4, that is resistant only to splashes, probably at most rain. I expected more, a real shame, because I consider it an important feature.
3) Non-existent kit: spare o-rings and maybe even a clip would have been a welcome thing.
4) anodizing: if you look carefully at the photos you can see how the body is scratched: I tried to install a metal clip and the treatment is came away. The clip was actually slightly small, so my fault, but the treatment didn't feel very scratch resistant.

13) Neutral aspects:
1) flat button, speed required to switch from one menu to another.
2) charging port not aligned with the milling.

14) Final rating:

Thank you for reading the review.

Congrats on a very thorough review. The pictures are very pleasing to look at and really tell the story of the light. Thank you for posting!

Thanks for reading and your support sir!

Impressive review and amazing light. I will put this on my short list.

Good review.

What i don’t like on my sample is tiny donut in the hotspot on distances less than 10m/30ft. It’s just anoying.

The other even bigger issue is terrible ramp speed.
I can DIY and polish the that beam but finding alternative driver will be more challenging.

Because of mentioned above, my M21F was placed in the drawer the first day i got it.
I hope Simon reads this and do finally something with those ramping drivers.

A very Thorough and Well Done Review

@id30209, if you want to fix the beam, there’s actually a neat trick: you need to not only recenter the reflector, but you also need to press it as tightly as possible on the centering ring.

That fixed all of my issues on my M21B which has something similar to yours, but better.

Thx for the tip! I did it before also but grinding the gasket thinner so it would not pop out again.

Anyway, you are correct. The M21F UI is certainly not the best it can be.

Hopefully, the GT FC60 Sofirn SP33S with its better UI will force Convoy to update its UI :stuck_out_tongue:

Thank you for reading the review and for writing your impressions.

I also have that donut hole in mine. I haven’t bothered trying to fix it. My led also has positive DUV even with green AR coating, so I’m going to swap something else in there. Led is 4500K version.