Sofirn HS10 w sw45k mod, First Impressions

HS10 first impressions
(not a free review sample, I paid for the light myself)


stock led, fresh 16340
1, 45, 175, 410 drops to 225, 800 drops to 225 lumens sustainable

at first I was not very impressed with the UI,
it came with some widely spaced stepped modes, but then I read the manual and found out how to get into ramping mode. Suddenly Im much happer with this light, Both UI modes use Last Mode Memory.

I changed the LED to sw45k…
Outputs in stepped mode are 0.8. 24, 100, 250 that steps down to 125, and 500 turbo, that also steps down to 125 sustainable lumens, quickly.
Personally, I see no reason to use Turbo.

The beam is clean, but very narrow…
The beam would probably be a little more floody with a 519a, with Dome On

the headstrap is very comfortable…
I dont see much use for the pocket clip
I wish it had a button light like the SC21 Pro.
I tried the beacon, but imo it is too bright, and cannot be dimmed.

total weight w battery is nice and low, 52 grams, same weight and just slightly shorter length than a TS10…

I tried a CR123 at 3.1V, it worked but also turned on the red Low Battery warning light. I dont know if there is LVP shutoff.

The light is easy to mod, the bezel is not glued, and unscrews easily by pressing against my silicone solder mat.

photo album: Sofirn HS10 w sw45k D200 - Album on Imgur

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I like this light a lot. It’s not perfect but I think it’s an incredible value for <$20. I agree about the modes being spaced poorly. Moonlight is too bright. I don’t like how slowly it ramps so I left it on discreet modes.

I put a 519a 3500k (dome on) in mine and it’s perfect.

Are you going to open the switch end and do something to dim the indicator light? Very annoying how bright it is and silly that it comes on even when using moonlight mode.

A pro version with Anduril would be amazing. That would fix the mode spacing and if it controlled the switch light it would solve that problem too.

No plans to mod the switch light. I just put my finger over it until it turns off… It is actually a Voltage test…

I think it is fine w the stock firmware, for people that are not interested in learning Anduril.

I find the ramping a bit faster than I would like, when going up from moonlight it wants to jump to the second stepped mode, but I like that I can ramp lower.

I would prefer a more floody beam, but no light is perfect… lol

The combination of low weight and low price is great for this headlamp. The step mode jumps are too big especially on low end. But even ramp it was hard to get low end brightness dailed in the way I want. Not a deal breaker, but could use improvement.

Headlamp weight comfort is a very personal thing. I’ve mostly tried to stick with 18650 and 21700 lights. But the comfort of this light weight headmap made me also stock some 18350 batteries. I had to buy a new charger that has a low enough charge current setting. Amazing how 20 grams less makes a headlamp feel so much better.

Thanks for showing the pictures. I’m interested in just a bit more throw on the light that I use for walking at night.

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Is there some kind of blink during the ramp and lowest mode is lower with ramp?

Here a review where is showed flickering measure on high mode

glad you like the pics
fwiw, the HS10 does not fit 18350, only 16340

I bought it for close range use at low output levels, while sitting at a desk
the beam is a bit too narrow for my arms reach application

I hope you find a light that works well for walking at night, this one might, but the battery is rather small. Runtime could be fine in full darkness, on Low or Medium.

otoh, if youre walking in areas with competing ambient light from streetlamps, or if you try to use High or Turbo full time, the runtime might be too short… depending on how long the walk lasts. That is easily solved though… by carrying a spare battery.

FWIW, the light w stock LED when using High or Turbo, steps down to 225 lumens on my meter… that is not a big difference from Medium mode of 175 lumens. I say this to emphasize my opinion that lights should be evaluated at their sustainable output level, or less. I dont consider Turbo a useful mode, nor a useful basis for comparison.

The headstrap is very comfortable, and including the HS10 with battery, the whole headlamp weighs just 80 grams.

no blink

lowest mode is
1.2 lumens in ramped mode and
0.8 lumens in stepped mode, on my meter

thanks for the link to the review w flicker index, fwiw, it is at very high frequency, too fast to see. There is no visible flicker when waving the light on any mode.

I’ ll try ask Sofirn if can be lowered on the next revisions.
Also, less narrow beam would be better for work or walking and cover a broad area
Thank you

I’ve got a couple coming. Hopefully adding a domed 519 will work well.

HS10 w 5700K Domed
low 0.9, momentary max 1,000 lumens (sw45k max is 530 lumens)

Both lights on medium, the 519a has a wider beam and more lumens, but less lux:

iow though the 519a makes more total lumens, they are spread over a wider area, so the sw45k actually is brighter, within the smaller hotspot on the wall…

album w more HS10 LED swaps and modding pics

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Update regarding Parasitic Drain. It is not good.

I did a test, fully charged the light and then did not use it for 1 month. The battery dropped to 3.6V in that time, and the Red switch light turned on when I went to try to use the light.

Conclusion, Must use Physical Lockout for a light that is not in regular use.

I like other things about the light, small size, comfortable as a light weight headlamp, easy to change the LED to Nichia, but not the High Parasitic Drain.

I do not recommend this light unless it is used with Physical Lockout.

As an alternative I have ordered an Emissar D2, because I want to try an Anduril light with Regulated output.

Another option, would be a Zebra, but I absolutely Hate the Zebra UI.

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Thanks for doing that experiment. Dang, I like a lot of things about this light but the driver isn’t one of them. I gave three away to non-enthusiasts over the holidays and I think it’s safe to say all three batteries are dead. That drain is a bummer.

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I also gave a couple away… I agree they are probably dead by now… oh well… back to shopping… lol