Review: Manafont Li-ion driver 1 mode and 5 mode

I expressed a wish to test this driver and Jim arranged these two and sent them for a review. The drivers in question are:

I never came across these drivers before and i was courious how they perform.

The drivers are actually indentical. The 5 3 and single mode are acomplished by shorting a pin or few pins on an IC present here.

On the left circuit board we can observe the 3 pins that needs to be shorted to make this 5 mode driver to single.

This does not bother me at all actually i like this option. Makes the driver very flexible.

I decided to try this on a KD 5 mode R5 dropin i had which came with a 501host i needed for a uv dropin. It turned out the stock driver on that dropin was overdriving the R5 very hard and i was very happy when manafont's driver actually came so i can save this dropin from frying himself.

This is the KD R 5 mode dropin with the MF 5 mdoe driver installed. The driver is 16.66mm in diameter but i still managed to do a decent soldering job.

The other driver is what was in the dropin. I never bothered to identify it since 2.4A tailcap draw on high was too much for my taste.

On to the test!

Battery 18700 2400mAh XTAR 4.17V - Manafont 5m driver and cree R5:

  • High - 2180 mA !!!
  • Med - 1040 mA
  • Low - 150 mA

Immediately stopped. Cheched my DMM on a few other flashlights and it was reading correctly.

Apparently this driver is not very suitable for the low Vf R5 emitters have.

Okay a higher Vf will be tested. I happen to have a Warm Q5 or something i have to write a review of. I have to post the review but have done all the measurements and photos needed already.

Below the photo of the P60 dropin. Since the stock soldering job was awful i decided i would swap the driver and do a cleaner soldering job.

Battery 18700 2400mAh XTAR 4.17V - Q5 Warm white Manafont dropin:

  • High - 1250 mA
  • Med - 450 mA
  • Low - 80 mA

Its actually a 5 mode dropin in stock form (H-M-L-STR-SOS).

Battery 18700 2400mAh XTAR 4.17V - Q5 Warm and Manafont 5m driver:

  • High - 1650 mA !!!
  • Med - 810 mA
  • Low - 150 mA

Again this puzlles me as what the driver was designed for? Tried the single mode a hour later and measured +- 1-2% of differnece in the output at the only mode it was capable of (without fiddling).

At this point the driver is unsuitable for anything except for a R2 based thrower flashlight when the user would want to drive the emitter very agressively.

I would like to thank Jim from Manafont for sending the drivers for testing. Unfortunately these did not turn out what we wuld expect from them. Perhaps it is worth investigating a bit since i can't think of a normal use for these drivers. It could be a "funky" batch with a mismatched resistor. The current draw is about 35% off (too much) in both cases. Since The R5 was scary bright i knew the efficiency was not low and the R5 was in fact been heavily overdriven.

I had high hopes for this one. I will try to inquire if there was a faulty batch otherwise the driver is unusable except for perhaps Match who might attempt to use one to drive 2x R5 emitters in parallel. :)

Look nice as XM-L driver to small bodies, perhaps 2A or more...

I had to order one , I just had to ...

Which pins are soldered [ 5 mode - 3 mode - 1 mode ] Looks like Manafont used the same picture


Look nice as XM-L driver to small bodies, perhaps 2A or more...


Exactly. In a small host, @2a would be ideal for a nice floody edc from either a 14500 or 16340. I may have to get a few. Thanks for the good review, Budgeteer!

Ordered two , it's unregulated since don't have sense resistor , apparently is the same kind of one DX sell without memory. Hoping these came with an identifiable IC to look in the data-sheet how they work .

The current with full cells is 2.40A for an XP-G and 3.1A with an XM-L but quickly came down because is grossly dependent of in voltage...

Too bad mine die for unknown cause otherwise would be in the UF G10...still prefer the linears ones but easier to implement is nice.


I just found out the driver works good on osram leds.

I just tried with one osram warm white rated for max 1A.

Readings at the 5 mode driver:

hi: 1,21A
med: 550 mA
lo: 110 mA

Slightly overdriven but since this driver is very voltage dependant it will overdrive the led for not much of it's runtime.

Used the standard dropin pill with a SMO reflector. It does nto make a very pretty beam but aint bad. I suspect osrams would like a OP reflector better.

And yeah the lumen guesstimate would be around the 130-150lm mark compared with a q5 at around 900mA.

The color of the beam being warm is very similar to an incan, peraps just a tad whiter. Very pleasant indeed.