Review: Sky Ray 818

The Sky Ray 818: Bright, Lousy

<<updated with better pictures>>

This is my first triple and after the letdown of getting the shaft from YouWantLED and not receiving that triple, I was excited to get the 818. I'm not excited any more. Although the 818 is reliable and very bright, it is poorly made and I simply cannot get past its shoddy machine work and indifferent fit and finish.

Bottom line: It sucks.

What I like:

- bright, bright, bright

- bezel

- basic design

- run time

What I do not like:

- finish

- arrived with nicks/burrs

- threads

- loose lens

- blinky modes

- "Brightness Upto 4000 LM" printed on tube

Sky Ray 818 3 x XM-L/T6 2 x 18650 LED Flashlight from Lightmalls


3 x XM-L/T6 emitters

2 x 18650 batteries

5-mode: low, medium, high, fast strobe and SOS.

"anodic oxidation surface treatment"

aluminum alloy, 56mm head with stanless steel bezel

tail standing, reverse clicky tail switch, 16mm boot

not IPX rated

Foy's attempt to quantify relative brightness . . .

light meter lux . . .

in my dimly lit office - 34

4Sevens Quark AA2 (R5) - 64

Solarforce M8 - 129

E1320 modified Trustfire F15 - 150

Sky Ray 818 - 210

Is it 4,000 lumens as advertised? Nope. But, it is really bright.

tail cap amps with 2 x Panasonic 2350:

low - .15

medium - .81

high - 1.68

This Sky Ray is a very pleasant design with cooling fins suggesting uber-performance and Foy is a sucker for a cool stainless steel bezel. At anything closer than say, five feet however, the 818 looks cheap and it goes down hill from there when you pick it up. It never felt good in the hand, no matter how much I played with it . . .

The threads feel like crap and the o-rings on the tube and tail cap make little to no contact with the tube it screws onto . . .

The "anodization" looks and feels like paint, all edges are sharp and there are nicks everywhere.

Yessir . . . pre-nicked and chipped . . . goes well with the pleasing patina of a used flashlight.

This Sky Ray 818 shipped with no o-ring between the bezel and lens. The subsequent rattle is in keeping with a flashlight so sloppily manufactured.

Even after I blew out all the Singapore sourced dirt and sand, the threads feel gritty and rough.

Size comparison with a Solarforce M8. Not having compared run times with anything, I thought the one hour and thirty minutes I got with the Sky Ray with unprotected Panasonics was pretty good.

Beam shots taken at 1/4 second shutter speed @ 2.8.

Solarforce M8 and my cat "Marx" . . .

. . . side by side with the Sky Ray. (on the right) Obviously, the M8 throws but the Sky Ray overall is much brighter.

Marx again and this is my E1320 juiced-up F-15. Pretty dang bright - Erik is the man.

Side by side, F-15 on the left and the Sky Ray on the right. If you look at the eaves you can see that the Sky Ray is slightly brighter.

Full size shot of the Sky Ray.

As bright as the Sky Ray is, I was expecting more from three XM-Ls. I was also expecting more quality and a better flashlight for near $60.

The Sky Ray 818 is stupid.


Excellent review foy. The most irriating is the poor machining and extremely low quality finish. Looks like small-sun brand type of offering. :/

60usd? They are kidding right?

Great review, thanks for sharing. It is interesting to note the finish on my first generation SkyRay triple X is much better than your example.

I wish I would have researched it more. Hopefully nobody else will make the same mistake. Anyway, if I dim the lights in my office it looks somewhat impressive standing there.


That's bad.

My copy of Uniquefire 3900 from lightmalls (same store as what you've gotten the 818 from) has been excellent. Maybe at most 1 nick...that's it. Driven very good too, much better than yours.

Funny yours measured 1.68A. Should be 2.1-2.6A from the various stuff from Trustfire/Sky Ray.

On an unrelated note, do you have an MPP-1 and if so how would you rate it compared to the M8 in terms of throw?

Thanks for the review , Foy .

Great pictures , as always .

Unvarnished opinion , check .

Maybe after a driver swap , you'll like the light better .

Thanks for the honest review Foy! Excellent job on this. I have been wondering about this model, and it looks like my hesitance was warranted.

You'd probably like the Uniquefire 3900 a bit more. I own it, and the build quality is very good, although the finish is marginal, and my unit has an obvious machining mistake in the bezel.

Frontpage'd and Sticky'd.

This is also why I value this forum!

That being said I AM sorry that it was such a let down for you though :-(

I can definetely understand the urge to own a tripple XML light. So it is a darn shame that it should be a shoddy light.

I hope you fare better with your next purchases Foy.


Nice review Bad Light.

Some of these $40+ budget lights are not worth the money.

That's a shame, Foy. Honestly though, I was surprised you went with the Skyray after all the posts regarding the numerous issues folks had with most every Skyray model. For your $60 I'd have gone the extra $10 or so and gotten the DRY. I hope the driver doesn't die on you next. :(

good review Foy..seems skyray should stick to small SS lights and may be overreaching with this triple xml lights..


+1, Foy needs a DRY.

Do they have a version with a SS Bezel?

No, but that would rob Foy of the joy of Foy-zing the bezel himself....

motodeficient -

I do own the Masterpiece Pro 1 and in terms of throw specifically, the MPP 1 throws farther than the M8. I know there are better throwers out there but the MPP 1 will give you new respect for the ubiquitous XR-E.

Thanks for the kind words. All I have left to do now is the Wk 26. That one will be much more fun . . .


...a pile of camel dung, as well. Bluish tint, DOA (I fixed a bad connection in head), underdriven, and I gave it to my dad as a gift. Purchased from Manafont.

My 3800 was also a pile of camel dung. Fried quickly. Manafont said it was a 3-day warranty on that light.

I'll never buy another product from Manafont because of their shoddy customer service, and not standing behind their products.

Two thumbs down for FryRay lights, and Manafont.

Ending on a positive note, the 3800 host makes a great hammer, if you don't hit the nail too hard.

Kind of surprised you whent with the fry ray Foy, I think there is better tripples out there and the new 5 x T6 from trustfire might be worth a look once they start rolling in.

Thanks for an honest review with great pic,s

Good Honest Review Foy. I was thinking, why would you buy a Crappy looking Light? I looked at the Sales Link. It is not the same Light you RX or the Photos are Modded. It looks like Misrepresentation to me.

Great review. I am shocked at the poor finish. My skyray 3xml also had a large nick in it but the finish was much better.