Review: Real Budget Lights: Two El Cheapo no-name eBay zoomies (one 1 x 18650 and one 3 x AAA) - together under $10, shipped

Budget Light Review: Two El Cheapo no-name eBay zoomies (1x18650 and 3xAAA)

Reviewer's Overall Rating: ☆☆☆ (Silver) / ☆☆☆☆ (Black)

Summary (Silver one):

Battery: 1 x 18650
Switch: Reverse Clicky
Modes: High - Low - Strobe
LED Type: unknown (not defined)
Lens: Plastic
Tailstands: Yes
Price Payed: $4.25
From: eBay
Date Ordered: November 2011

Summary ("Black redhead"):

Battery: 3 x AAA
Switch: Reverse Clicky
Modes: High - Low - Strobe
LED Type: unknown (not defined)
Lens: Plastic
Tailstands: Yes, barely
Price Payed: $5.52
From: eBay
Date Ordered: November 2011

Pros (both, unless noted):

  • Adjustable focus
  • Silver one has a nice looking body, might be ok for modding
  • Threads & push-pull zoom were properly lubed in the silver one

Cons (both, unless noted):

  • Build quality
  • Very cheap aluminum pill
  • Plastic lens
  • Unknown emitter
  • Broken memory, always starts in next mode
  • Low power, nowhere near the claimed 300/400 lumens
  • Beam quality, especially in the black one when zoomed
  • Twist zoom in the black one is very rough (and has over three rounds from flood to zoom!!!)

Features / Value: ★★★ (Silver) / ★★★★ (Black)

Basic operation, two modes and strobe.

Memory doesn't work in either one. Always starts in next mode.

Value for money is actually almost ok, and at least the silver body is ok for modding (+1 star).

Design / Build Quality: ★★★★★

I like the looks of the silver one. Smooth push/pull zoom functionality and well placed non-slip rings are nice.

The red crown on the black one is a matter of opinion. IMHO it looks ok.

But the zoom is very weird: Turn the head to zoom - OVER 3 FULL ROUNDS from flood to zoom. Feels like you would be unscrewing the head off! No-one would ever need that kind of precision for zooming, really. And with scratching sound. No thanks!

Threads were surprisingly smooth, and well lubed (especially in silver). Also the overall finish looks better in silver than the black one.

Nice size, fits hand, feels good. Both were actually smaller than I thought.

Measures (no photos this time, sorry):


Length: 125-135mm
Diameter: 34mm
Lens effective diameter: 21mm
Tailcap diameter: 28mm
Weight: 106g (without battery)


Length: 107-115mm
Diameter: 34mm
Lens effective diameter: 21mm
Tailcap diameter: 28mm
Weight: 88g (without battery)

Battery Life: ★★★★

Didn't run real runtime tests yet, but must be good with tailcap currents of:

Silver: High: 0.45A, Low: 0.10A -> theoretically almost 5h runtime on high, 24h with low.

Black: High: 0.30A, Low: 0.07A -> theoretically almost 2h runtime on high, over 10h with low.

Light Output: ☆☆☆☆

Below average. Under driven.

I got a lux reading of about 2.3kcd (silver) and 1.7kcd (black) in zoomed mode.

White wall beamshots, first in zoomed mode. Black redhead on left. Haven't ever seen that ugly ring..

Emitter & reflector:

Both lights have the same unknown emitter (please help me identifying it) and weird looking reflective sides.

Summary: ★★★(Silver) / ★★★★ (Black)

Barely worth the price paid. Black one will be gifted away straight away, silver one will get another chance with R2 + 1000mA driver.

The end: (pun intended)

Thanks for reading. Hope you enjoyed the review.

I guess the sipik (clones) stay unbeatable in that price range for zoom flashlights :)

TY for the review! Good I didn't buy the 2000x zoom (black one)

Thanks for trying, _the_ !

Would be nice if we could find another good, nice looking zoomie.


No problem.

I thought someone had to try these as well.

And I have some more $2...$8 lights coming, so be prepared for more of these crappy reviews.. :P

Nice work! That red one looks like a parts bin special.

U2 version(latest) of your silver torch! Recomended by others here.


Edited: wrong link

Not a zoomie though? At least not mentioned in description.

Looks like a "normal" SkyRay S-R5, just with a better emitter.

Thanks _the_ for the review! I'm glad to see this sort of review of the ultra-cheapo lights, because it was a $4 light that got me started on budget lights. 8) Well done.

Frontpage'd and Sticky'd.

Sorry,I did not figure that.I saw the link on Coppertops message about

belt lights and took it for granted. When checking other threads here,they

question if it`s U2 or T6 ,since it is hard to see the difference.

Lennart,looking for zoomies!