Review: Small Sun ZY-C10-S Flood-to-Throw

Manufacturer specs (my comments in red)

  • Model: SMALL SUN ZY-C10-S
  • LED: Cree Q5 *dubious...looks like a counterfeit CREE
  • Lumen: 260
  • Color BIN: White
  • Total Emitters: 1
  • Battery Configurations: 1 x 18650 rechargeable battery (not included)
  • Voltage: 3.6-4.5V
  • Switch Type: Clicky/Clickie
  • Switch Location: Tail-cap
  • Modes: 3 (sort of)
  • Mode Arrangement: Hi (814mA) > Lo (170mA) > Strobe
  • Zooms from throw to flood beam (variable beam intensity)
  • Zoom style: Push/Pull
  • Carrying Strap Included

My additional specs:

  • Price: $14.90 USD from Manafont
  • Lens: Plastic
    • Thickness: 10mm
    • Outer Diameter: 38.22mm
    • Inner Diameter: 33mm
    • Focal Length in Flood: 19.5mm
    • Focal Length in Throw: 32mm
  • Head Diameter: 44.5mm
  • Body Diameter: 25.3mm
  • Tail Diameter: 29.1mm
  • Total Length in Flood mode: 157mm
  • Total Length in Throw mode: 170mm
  • Current Draw (Panasonic 18650 at 3.76V):
    • High mode: 814mA
    • Low mode: 170mA
    • Strobe mode: unknown (to me)

Initial impressions of the Small Sun zoomer:


  • Quality is definitely cheap
  • Counterfeit CREE emitter
  • Plastic lens
  • No lens gasket
  • No thread lube
  • driver press fit into pill
  • Memory works as far as it remembers the last mode you were in and starts on the next in line.
  • Lens almost comes out far enough to get a perfect die image
  • Lens came pre-scratched to save me the frustration of doing it myself.
  • Threads are too few


  • Body has not one minute ding or blemish on it
  • Anodizing is pretty decent, smooth & consistent
  • Huge lens makes a tiny and extremely bright hotspot in throw mode - nearly half the size of the SK68 and much brighter.
    • Can't wait to beef up the pill and put an XM-L or XR-E R2 in it with a better driver.
  • Switch feels decent enough
  • Orange tailcap boot that's not paper thin or cheap feeling.
  • Tail stands
  • Came with lanyard.
  • Packaged well in lots of bubble wrap.


Typical Chinese budget construction on this one. Threads could be a little more plentiful but are average, I suppose. They came unlubed and dry. Plenty of aluminum used with very thick head and tail cap. O-rings at either end of body and on the head for the bezel are thick and would definitely help make it water resistant if not for the slide tube lacking any o-ring (metal ring provides friction between body and sliding head) and also a lack of o-ring between the bezel and head.

The head is very beefy and has some fins but since the pill threads into the battery tube it does nothing to help with heat sinking ability. The body did come with no scratches or dings and the anodizing is even and consistently smooth.

The tail cap is very heavy and has a decent feeling switch. The spring is soldered to the switch PCB and has a nice solid end soldered to it instead of the usual hollow brass cap that usually sits on the spring tip. The switch is held in place by a massively thick, threaded retaining ring. Extremely solid assembly. The switch boot is orange silicon and is just the right thickness with proper feel without the usual thin flimsy feeling most lights in this price range have.

The lens is plastic, not glass as advertised. It is, however, possibly the largest diameter aspheric lens on any budget light and boy does it work (more on that later)!

The emitter is supposed to be a Cree XR-E Q5 but I believe it is a counterfeit/clone. The emitter is off center inside its lens ring and dome. The die image cast is not like any other genuine XR-E emitter I have. That being still works well.

Driver appears to be a generic POS without memory. Turn it off and when you turn it back on it will be in the next mode in the sequence (H/L/S) and is very annoying. It is also press fit into the aluminum pill and not soldered. The pill itself is long but very light and thin. I haven't removed the driver or emitter yet but I am positive it is the usual hollow budget pill.


In spite of the poor quality of the individual components, as a whole sum it totally rocks!! Comparing it to the main budget F2T standard (Sipik SK68 with 14500 cell) it smokes it in every aspect except flood diameter. In throw mode the die image is 1/4 the size of the Sipik's and WAY brighter!! Flood mode is smaller but is very smooth and even. I believe I forgot to mention that the flood is also WAY brighter than that of the Sipik. I can't wait until it gets dark out so I can do some outdoor testing. I am looking forward to modifying this baby but haven't decided what emitter to use when I do. I was first thinking an XM-L was called for but I worry that in spite of the large lens it might do better with something like an XP-G R5 driven at 2A. I am open for suggestions.


This is not a high end torch by any means and it does embody almost every negative characteristic a budget light can promise until... insert a battery and turn it on! If you like Flood-to-Throw torches this one is an absolute MUST! Even if you are mildly curious about it, for the low price of $14 shipped I can honestly recommend you not pass this one by. Here are some pictures to demonstrate and remove any doubts...

Here are some more pics of the light together and broken down to parts.

And one last reminder of how the ZY-C10-S (left) blows away the SK68 (right) and this pic doesn't begin to do justice to the difference in brightness...

Hope you enjoyed the show, I'll be here all week! Don't forget to tip the servers.


Nice review! Now I can't wait to receive mine, so I could start upgrading it with R2 (still have some spare ones waiting).

We seem to receive our lights about the same time, maybe +/- 1 days => maybe I will get mine tomorrow. :)

This is the minimum I'd hoped for...

Shame they didn't put those fins on the body...

My guess is, if I had 3 of these lights, one each modded to xre, xpg and xml, I'd prefer the xpg. I do think there's a purpose for xml zoomies, but I think this might throw so well that I'd have to buy a second light if I did the first xml;)

I will order from DX and do some over driving/temp testing until I fry the emitter (to get a feel for what the sinking can handle), and then decide for sure.

thanks very much for the detailed review.

Nice review JohnnyMac.

The lens looks like the same given on the yezl T9, I would like to know it is concentrating better with a clearer die on the wall, but that might be difficult to know not having both.

Would you please let us know the diameter of the light at 1m from the wall? with that detail I could know how close it is.

The pill looks also very similar to the one on the YEZL but longer.

Thanks JohnnyMac

Fantastic and detailed review... great value here...

I have two on order to mod out, thanks so much

Can you tell the size of the LED star under the black isolator?

I don’t have my lights yet –but it seems like from the size of the flood beam in the pictures that when the lens travels back and forth –in the flood mode it stops short of coming real close to the led and not producing a “wall to wall” flood... any chance you could verify how close?... the ultraok one I have sits about 20mm away on full flood… it also seems like about the same lens travel… about 13mmm as you have reviewed … and similar properties in the beam from the photos

However… this light that I just got two days ago here…

And available here too

The lens travels 23mm from tight focused emitter to mega flood… but only in a 29mm lens..

So my question is… is it just the design of the respective lights… and why (apart from the bigger flood being dimmer) would a light not be designed to go from Mega flood to tight spot?

I look forward even more now to getting my lights… how they can be modded out.. I think the lens from the UltraOk light should fit in these.. we'll see... Thanks JohnnyMac

I can tell you that the isolator disk is 20mm across and sits flush. Not ready to booger it up yet by prying it loose though.

Thanks for the review , JohnnyMac .

Can't wait to see what this does when properly modded .

I have one on order aswell. What diameter o-ring would fit the lense and what size o-ring would you use to replacet the metal "o-ring".

I assume that a 1.5a 17mm driver will replace the original nicely.

I got this today.

some plus informations:

Current reading with fully charged sanyo cell :

high ~ 1.4A -> approx 40klux @1m

low ~ 0.33A

The lens is not a good one, the flood state is very ringy, and in the throw state there is a brighter part of the spot in the centre, the spot isn't so uniform. Overall it is a good host for modding.

The driver in yours is a hell of a lot stronger than the one in mine which tells us there is a big variance in manufacturing and parts. What emitter did you get in yours? Does it look like a genuine Cree? If you look at my pics you will see that how the emitter in my example looks to be a poor knock-off.

I would say a 36mm ID o-ring for the lens. As for an o-ring for the slider area that would be tough.

There is very little play between the body and head and the o-ring would have to be extremely thin and no more than 22mm ID to fit tight in the body groove.

17mm driver would be the right size.

Mine looks original, nothing problem with it.

Meanwhile I began the modification, xm-l + a better lens. There are some problems, but can be solved.

What exactly do you have going on there? Your XM-L looks like it’s 1/2" off of the pill. You shooting for all flood?

Yeh... you will gain a ton of food if you bring the led closer to the lens.... but without being able to pull the sliding "head" out further you will not be able to focus the emitter hot spot (if that matters to you)

Or you could replace the led by a XP-G or an XM-l, both will be a bit flooders, but will also throw a bit less.

In the other hand you can get the yezl T9 which has more travel and a really big beam on flood ( 140cm at one meter).

Not exactly. The new lens has 18mm focal point, so the led must be closer to the lens.

You see the difference between the lenses.


Look at the result, what a large spot, and above 30000 lux. The other spot is with the original lens + xr-e at 1.2A .

Very interesting! What would the XM-L look like with the original flatter lens?

Smaller :slight_smile:

yes, please show us:) what i'd really like to know is how the original would look w/ the thick lens but I guess that's tougher to do now