Ultrafire UF-H3 18650 headlamp

Just arrived this morning - picked it up from the PO on my way to work.

I also got three holsters for P60 lights from DX. The holsters were ordered and paid for on the 25th of July!

It came in the rather nice Ultrafire presentation box. I'll do some quick pictures with the phone's camera so don't expect too much of them.

It is definitely the smallest 18650 light I have. The smaller light in front is a Zebralight H50.

The magnet on the base works well.

It starts at the last brightness setting which is probably what you want. The middle of the range is about the same as the Zebralight on high and there is a lot more light available from this one. Far too much for reading in bed - I find I need 10-15 lumens for this. If my eyes were younger I'd probably only need 2-5.

It doesn't want to go into the headband with the attached clip. That clip will probably be removed permanently in the near future and it'll be stuffed into the decent headband.

The beam is not quite as wide as the Zebralight's 120 degrees, but it is around 100 degrees I'd say.

Don't have a meter with me but runtime ought to be a good percentage of eternity on low. Its lowest level isn't as low as the Zebralight's as is testified to by the spots in my eyes now - it still isn't comfortable to look into the LED at its lowest level.

I like it already.

And as for me, my UF-H2 (1xAA variant) arrived yesterday. I also like it very much, waiting for the long runtime test to finish before starting a review.

Just the info i wanted! Thanks for being a guinea pig. :P

If you get onto your usual professional grade review's i'm all ears (or eyes?). Particualarly i would want to know how does it cope with heat on high.

Home to check on the dog.

Due to the design it is tricky to measure current draw.

Current seems to be variable between about 15-650mA. At 15mA it is still producing a useful amount of light and should run for at least 6 days. I'd only try that with a protected cell. The tailcap is smooth and very difficult to turn with frozen fingers.

At the highest level more or less, the lightbox says 650 lux or about 115 lumens. There may be more to be had from it but for most flood headlamp uses that will be plenty - I don't all that often use the 66 lumens my H50 is capable of.

The extra is nice to have, but not essential. I'd like it if it flashed to tell you that it was at the top or the bottom of the range.

It also has a slow SOS mode.

I suppose someone out there wants that....

The lowest level I can get out of it - it could go a little lower but it ramps quickly back up is 54 lux / around 10 lumens which is ideal for my 50 year old eyes when reading in bed. Younger eyes need less light as they can hold the book closer, it won't be long until my arms are too short :(

Given that its maximum draw is 650mA from the cell (3 hours on high - can't be bad), it probably doesn't get too hot. A headlamp will let you know that it is overheating - your forehead tends to notice.

I've set it on full power and left it on the desk. I'll check it every few minutes to see how it gets on.

After about 10 minutes on full power I can only feel it warm against my lips directly in front of the LED. I'd say it feels like about 40-45 degrees. My lips say the head is about 30-35 degrees. Ambient temperature is about 12 degrees (Centigrade)

Just put it beside my MrLite J4. The Ultrafire is smaller in diameter - my a few micrometres, and about 4mm shorter! And the MrLite is an AA light.

The beam is wide - more than a metre wide at 60cm.

Here's the ceiling shot with the light on top of a door about 60cm from the ceiling. Ignore the bluish patch - the camera's sensor isn't all that keen on LED lighting - that bluish patch isn't visible to the naked eye.

There are some faint rings around the edges of the beam but I can barely see them in a darkened room - they will only be noticeable when white wall hunting.

The LED is an XR-E EZ900 which means Q bin or better.

It comes on at the last set brightness. If you switch on then press and hold the switch, the brightness will ramp up then down then up again then if you hold it long enough it'll go into the annoying SOS mode. The ramping seems to go slower in the mid-range and quite quickly at either end though it is quite a bit slower than the Akoray K-106 does. It is still tricky to hit the lowest or highest level.

Yes, I wish it had a long pause, or as you suggested a flash for minimum and maximum. One trick I found is to get fairly close to the min or max and then release the button. Then hold it again and try to get closer to the limit. Seems to work for me, YMMV. Or for everyone outside of the USA, YKMV. (How do you say "mileage" in metric? It's "kilometraje" in Spanish.)

In this country we tend not to say mileage - that is what I claim on my expenses as the distance I've driven. We tend to say "fuel consumption". Which is officially measured in litres of fuel per 100km which is utterly meaningless to me as the fuel consumption figure that means something to me is miles per (UK) gallon. A UK gallon is 4.5 and a bit litres, a US one three and a bit. On seeing the official figures I divide by 100 to get litres per kilometre, multiply by 8 and divide by 5 to get litres per mile. Divide 4.54 by the litres per mile to get miles per gallon. I certainly can't do that in my head so I suppose I'm just going to have to get used to the annoying official figures - they've only been using them for about fifteen years. The car ads all have to use the official figures, but they don't need to add YMMV as they do in the US.

So my car does 15mpg in winter when the engine never gets a chance to reach operating temperature - most runs are short for me. Or according to the official figures it uses 19l per 100km. 15mpg actually means something to me - i.e., it is truly atrocious. 19 litres per 100km is just a couple of meaningless numbers.

I agree, the L/100km figure never made any sense to me.

Come to think of it, the Spanish word "kilometraje" doesn't refer to fuel economy. It refers to the odometer reading.

I grew on Km so that does make sense to me. We only used mileage when referring to nautical equipment (boats and sailing devices :D).

Never liked much the imperial system as i grew on metric. I often find myself wall headbanging when i see one qxztrasdzillion of an inch for size like 1/5 of an inch is really puzzling me. I knew an inch is 2,54mm but doing math instead to read something like that instead of 8mm really sux. Ahhh the joys of different cultures. Fun but not very pratical. How an 18650 cell would be called in imperial numbers... i would not dare to try. :P

Fortunately they did not try... there is enough different way to adress to a single AA already.

I don't know in other Spanish speaking countries but in Argentina we used 'kilómetros por litro' , that make sense since we are charged for the fuel and used in the roads those units.

In Sweden we use "liter per mil" or L/10km, official figure is L/100km but almost everyone uses the former. All long distance measurements on road signs are in km, but the "mil" is often used when refering to distances greater than 10km. i.e. 200km = 20 mil. I've always found the MPG confusing since you get a higher MPG if your fuel consumption is lower and vice versa. When using L/mil or L/100km you at least get a smaller figure if your fuel consumption is smaller, maybe it is just habits but I think that it makes more sense than the reverse.

I was brought up on the Imperial system, then the country decided to go metric, then they decided it wasn't the time, then they decided it was. In 1970 my brother only knew his weight in kilograms which was meaningless to everyone around him - especially as we here usually express our weights in stones (14lb) and pounds which makes conversion less easy - I am 13 stone 5lb or 85kg. I should be more than 20kg less.

It gets a lot worse, but it really is just what is useful to you. Distances in miles or kilometres are equally meaningful to me. Temperatures in the normal range of human experience here (Say 0-30 Centigrade) are equally meaningful in Centigrade or Fahrenheit. Outside that range it is Centigrade only. At really low or high temperatures, Kelvin is more meaningful.

Speeds in mph or kph al almost as meaningful - mph slightly more than kph. Our speed limits are expressed in mph but I have no problem working with either.

Actually, an 18650 was a lithium ion version of already in use cell sizes - 4/3A if my memory serves which it may not, that may be a 17670.

AA cells are also known as LR6, MN1500, Penlight, Type 316, Mignon. I've seen all of these on AA cells at one time or another - plus some with inscriptions in Hindi that might have been anything, and others in Chinese - in China an AA is a No. 5 cell

In the late 70's early 80's I worked in a camera shop. The situation with camera batteries was far, far worse. Each manufacturer had their own nomenclature and we had a ring-binder full of lists of which makers sizes were the same as which other maker's one. The commonest one was the MS76H, 357, LR44, SR44, AG13, SG13, LR154, A76, S76, 157, 303, plus many, many others that I don't now remember.


Yep i agree that was a mess. In my country we go strictly metric. Except that we always used imperial measuring for computer hardware sizes. Typical 2,5, 3,5, 5,25 inch hard drive or optical drive. They started to enforce a few moths ago that we have to (after 30 years or so) use a metric system only. Now i have a hard time getting used to 8,9cm hard drive... its always like WTF?!?. Being a computer technician this really pisses me off on a daily basis. I still use inches for pc hardware and don't care about an inspection coming to shop trying to enforce the mertic system. Costumers also do not understand the hard drive physical sizes in metric either. :) Or even more sad they know when a hard drive is sized 2,5 but dont know it is inches and what inches are. :P It's more like type 3,5 hard drive.

Old habits are hard to change. :)

Anyway, i envy your Ultrafire UF-H3 18650 headlamp!

Wish manafont does a deal on those. Hey Jim, in case you read this, there is a subtle hint. :P

When I first heard of the Ultrafire headlamps I thought they were two mode - high and SOS, and thought that they were far too expensive for what you got. It was only (The day before I decided I wanted one) that I discovered that it had a variable mode as well as the useless SOS. I'd now say they have more features than the Zebralights, plenty of light output and they cost less.

I think I tried hinting that a discount on these would be good too, but when it didn't work I bought one anyway.

Actually the hint I want to send to Manafont is, "Send me lots of free lights!", but I don't think that one is going to work either...

I didn't really need it as the Zebralight I bought about the time they were introduced is still an excellent headlamp, but the extra runtime from the 18650 appealed to me.

Don you are posting to much and don't read enough the original posts. ;-)

troyboy162 posted a review at jayki of the H3 , where he mentioned the ramping UI.

You even commented it a year ago ... lol.

Well it wasn't the first, but the third bullet point. Blush..

It just registered with me a few weeks ago - seems like things take a while to get into my skull..

Or maybe I didn't feel like I wanted a new light them :-P

Which given that 15 months ago I couldn't afford to feed myself might be closer to the truth.

But basically you are right.

Don, how is your UF-H3 holding out? Are you still enjoying it?