Review: Crelant V21A .... Premium U3 version

Crelant V21A (premium U3 version)

Reviewer's Overall Rating: ★★★★


Battery: 2xAA (alcaline, Ni-Mh, Lithium primary, etc)
Switch: Forward clickie (tailcap)
Modes: 3 (L, H, M) with memory
Lens: Coated glass lens
Tailstands: Yes
Price Paid:
From: Crelant
Date Ordered: Dec 2012


  • Good output with just 2xAA Ni-Mh
  • Includes SS clip, o-rings and lanyard with carabiner
  • Nice box (but can be improved)
  • Tailstands perfectly
  • Well regulated


  • No Tailcap!!
  • Switch not possible to change if fails Now possible to change switch (latest rev only)
  • Threads not lubed, completely dry, short and not very smooth
  • Declared output: 320 in the box, 450 lumen in Crelant´s website (read later)
  • Tricky to change modes due to the switch type used (read later)
  • Price could be lower and the quality a bit higher (read later)

Features / Value: ★★★☆☆

I really like the flashlights powered by 2xAA batteries. I like both the battery availability and the size (easy to hold in the hand, not as the 1xAA or 1xAAA flashlights...). I like them even more if they have a very efficient circuitry, giving both a good light output and a good runtime plus a "regulated" or "constant" output.

OK, now talking about this Crelant V21A.... it seems that I have received the latest revision they have made of this light! In this photo you can see the "Premium U3" imprint on one side of the flashlight

I was thinking that I was going to receive one of the first ones with T6/U2 XM-L led and gray anodizing... but I have received the latest rev with black ano III, U3 led and another small changes (as they claim). It seems that Crelant changed all their lights to the last specification (more info here

This is what Crelant states about this flashlight in their website about the specifications (my comments in bold):

- CREE XM-L U2 bin LED with 50 000 hour life span. (now they ship with XM-L U3 bin, but I can not prove it)
- Maximum output: 450 lumen (but in the box it clearly says 320 lumen, and so my tests)
- High efficient constant current circuit and output-luminance
- Microcontroller drive circuit
- Working voltage: 0.8 - 4.2 VDC (should work with 1x14500 and a dummy AA cell inside)
- Battery Types Supported: 2 xAA,
- Runtime(2AA):

High output at 1A: 450 lumen max for 106 minutes.
Mid output at 300mA: 128 lumen max for 300minutes.
Low output at 30mA: 13 lumen max for 48 hours

- Mil. Spec. Type 2 hard anodized aircraft grade 6063-T6 aluminum alloy (now they say it is ano Type 3)
- Bezel: stainless steel
- Colour: Gray (now they are shipping in black color)
- Tactical forward tail cap switch (very weird switch action to change modes, read later)
- High performance aluminum OP reflector with concentrated beam shot (yes, it is deeper than I thought)
- Waterproof: IPX-8 Standard
- Lens: Toughened ultra-clear coated and anti-abrasion glass
- Candle function with ability to stand on tail cap (tailstands perfectly!)
- Dimensions: Length 156mm, Head Diameter 23mm
- Weight: 69g excluding battery
- Accessories: Lanyard, spare o-ring

Design / Build Quality: ★★★☆☆

One thing that I consider not very good in this light is the fact that it has no tailcap. The only way to insert/change batteries is via the head (unscrewing the head) and inserting/removing them through there... Not very intelligent. The threads will suffer a lot, taking into account that they are not very smooth (even with lube) and that they are not anodized. Then, if there is no other way to change batts, my guess is that the threads will not last much.........

As said, the light has 2 main sections, the head and the tube (no tailcap). On the head part, starting from the front, there is a SS bezel, that can be unscrewed to have access to the internals (yes, this light is all backwards from what we are use to see). The lens, the oring, the reflector and the pill are removed from the outside of the head... I mean, looking in direction to the led. First unscrew the SS bezel, then remove the glass lens, then the oring, then the reflector and then the pill. Completely backwards compared to what we use to see. Not much knurling on the head.

The battery tube is the longest part, with some not very agressive knurling, and a "protuberance" for the removable SS clip (I think it is SS). The clip... it is OK... it is not the best I have seen... but... ok, it is a clip. There is no way to attach it firmly to the body, there is a bit of "play"... making to think it is a "cheap light".

Many things of this light are designed/manufactured that way... it seems that Crelant designed it taking into account the manufacturing costs first, and the quality second. I mean, some things are done to keep the costs down.... IMO this light should not be worth 38-40$. But that´s my opinion. Maybe Crelant is a new small manufacturer and they are "starting" in the flashlight world... but... man...

The LED is perfectly centered... (at least)...

The reflector is orange peel (not very agressive) and arrived with a bit of dust on the back side of the lens and on the surface of the reflector.

Another bad thing to keep costs down: as said many times, no tailcap. The switch, now, can be diassembled. On earlier versions it was not possible. Although now it is possible... man... again... a flashlight with no tailcap, with only one possible way to unscrew and insert/remove batts... too bad for the threads.

Yes, another bad thing for the "looking": the switch can be diassembled (again) from outside the flashlight, not by the inside, as we are used to see. Look and the rubber button, you will see a metallic ring with 2 holes (not very nice looking, again, keeping costs down). Take a pair of tweezers, unscrew the ring, and the switch can be pulled out. I have seen the switch.... Not a very common switch. It can be removed, and a new one can be installed there.... but if you can not find the correct one to install......... you know.....

Crelant says that it has class III anodizing. Well, I have no way to say if that is true or not. I only can say that the anodizing (or the paint if you want to call it that way) has some imperfections, some "edges" of the flashlight are not anodized/painted (at least on my unit).

Some things I have "seen" makes me to conclude that this light is not worth the about 40$ they are asking for it in many retailers. IMO, 25$ should be a good price. No more.

Another "issue". This is my first multimode flashlight with forward clickie that I have had. The mode change is done via the switch, obviously.... but... man....

It seems to have mode memory.... seems to have... but I have to "practise" more because of the "tricky" way to change modes.... ok.

The switch is a bit "strange"... It feels ok, not too hard, not too soft... and it has the adecuate travel... but... to change modes.... omg!...

The way it is, you can not do signals with it, despite it has a forward clickie (I mean you can not do morse code). The fact that it changes modes by the switch and not by rotating the head, means, that each time you press and release the button, it will change to next mode.

And even worst. If you have the light switched on, I mean, if you fully press the button, then fully release it, it will be on, but to change modes, you have to completely switch off the flashlight, then power-on again selecting the mode you want (without releasing the button) and then when you get the mode you want, you have to fully press and fully reselase the button to "lock-on" the switch on the ON position.

FYI, the mode order is Low, High, Med (with memory).

The threads could be more smooth. Even after lubing, not very good, but acceptable...

And finally, talking about the aesthetics... it is a bit "ugly"....

Battery Life: ★★★★

My first test with 2xAA 2500mAh (charged more than 6 months ago) gave 65 minutes high constant regulated output until the big drop....

OK, now, with 2xAA 2100mAh (fresh charged) the tests are consistent. I have found that it can be at full power during about 95-100 minutes until the regulation drops the output instantly from 100% to about 5%... (on the highest mode, of course).

I have not measured the runtime in Med and Low, but the manufacturer claims to have 5 hours on Med and 48 hours on low.

It seems to be fully regulated, it seems that the current draw increases as the battery voltage decreases. Crelant did a good job with the circuitry, because this light produces a constant brightness output during all the battery life.


High -

Med -

Low -

(it is very tricky to measure the current draw on a 2xAA flashlight with no tailcap XP)

Light Output: ★★★☆☆

I expected more light output... I mean... more lumens...

I dont have measuring equipment, so I have to take the measurements via "naked-eye" and comparing it to others (I will compare it to my lovely JetBeam BA20 and it´s 270 declared lumens...)

When I first switched on the light... the first thing I thought was: "this is not 450 lumen... my JetBeam BA20 seems brighter"... It was some "deception"...

Well, again, it perhaps gives the 450 declared lumens, but without any way to measure... for me it is impossibe to give a conclusion. I think it is more near the 320 lumens declared in the box than the 450 lumens declared in their web... I don´t know. (comparing to my BA20)

I think that with 2xAA, it gives 300-320 lumen aprox, but with a 14500+dummy cell, it reaches the 450 declared lumens.... who knows... I have not tried 14500.

Despite the XM-L has a bigger area size than the XP-G, both the BA20 and the V21A produce a similar beam at close distances. Big hotspot with a lot of spill. I have to say again that the reflector in the V21A is deeper than I tought before receiving the light. Nice for a big surface area LED.

The tint is CW. It has a big hotspot (similar to a xp-g flashlight), it throws less than the JetBeam BA20... floods about the same...




(the camera says that med and high are about the same... but not in real life)

My lumens estimations are:

High - about 300-320 lumen

Med - about 130 lumen

Low - about 15 lumen

Summary: ★★★★

My final veredict in stars is 4 of 5 (and being very generous). It is a perfectly functional and efficient flashlight, but the "small things" commented above...

It seems powerful and well regulated. OK, the purpose of a flashlight is to give you light... but...

Why they do have had to use a forward clickie?

Why they have designed it with no tailcap?

Why they made it taking into account first the manufacturing costs, and then, the quality?

Why they do claim 450 lumen in their web and 320 lumen in the box?

It is, somehow.... overpriced. IMO, as I said before, 38$-40$ is not an adecuate price for it. 25$-30$ should be the adecuate price for it. No more.

Hope Crelant solves the "little mistakes" they have made designing it.... and hope the rest of Crelant lights are not made in a similar way.

The review is almost finished (if you want to read something…) I still have to add photos of the box, beamshots and add the current draw.

Any question?


Thanks for your work! :)

i wont comment on the flashlight itself tho. dont get me even started lol.. begins with the brand name, and ..

:wink: You are welcome!. Let´s see if I can take the beamshots this night when it is dark……

Thanks for the review.

Is is possible to swap out the forward-clicky switch for a reverse-clicky, for the purpose of facilitating mode changes?

hmmm…. it is possible, but I dont know if there is any switch with this size and shape…

I will take a photo of the switch when I will take the beamshots and photos of the box, to help you “see” what switch it uses… but… a bit difficult to find one, I beleive… XP


I added beamshots at 3 meters, also photos of the box and the switch (sorry for the quality)

The switch is a “square” one, soldered to a PCB. Perhaps can be found… DX has about 20 different models, I dont know if any of them will fit there…

The “square” part of the switch, measures 11x11 milimeters. It has 2 pins soldered, one in one edge and the other in the other edge…. I will try to find one at DX and post it here…

Thanks for the review.

Thanks for the review.

Also Ill probably search for myself but I was wondering how much it is? The link to it directs to

I have seen it being sold from 38$ to 42$.

I would not pay more an 25$ for…. “this”

too bad guys… the light started to flicker

I had the light powered on on med mode lying over the table… about 1 hour later, it started to flicker with no reason…

I have to find why….

I am starting to dislike this flashlight…

well they got something like a year and a half warranty on um. that should cover it… and we will get to see how their warranty service is too :stuck_out_tongue:

Maybe I will fix it…. if it can be fixed…. I will not send nothing to anywhere in the world…… too expensive for me

Thanks, fran, for your review ;)!

Looks like another sh*t light from “premium” Chinese manufacturers who are trying hard to achieve level of quality that JetBeam/Klarus/Fenix/etc lights have.

Crelant is no premium brand.

Crelant is ....

Ok, it is not a sh*it light (but almost XD)… seriously, it is an aceptable light (not bad!) but many things could have been improved before entering into production

And about the flickering. Update. The flickering dissapeared by the same way it appeared: without doing nothing.

But… but… the continous flickering dissapeared… but now it has some “esporadic” flickering. Some times it flickers. I have tried to solve cleaning and lubing the threads (again), completely screwing the swtich assembly… but… no results. Maybe bad driver?

You guys are too hard on Crelant!

Alright, I dont own this light, but this review got me interested, however there are lots of 2xAA offers in the market today, both from “little” budget brands up to the big players and then theres somewhere between companies like Crelant.
Im just disappointed that they ask 30-40$ for a light that is quite a dud to be honest.

Thanks very much! Frontpage’d and Sticky’d.

manage to order this light after reading some reviews, still waiting for arrival.

hopefully it does much better than a Lenser P7 or Terralux 300.