UPDATE! "REVIEW" & Mods: Sofirn SP32A [It is now a TRIPLE :D ] (Pic Heavy)


||| Post 1: general overview of the flashlight

||| Post 2: functioning and beamshots

POST 7 - Video with ramping mode
POST 8 - 18350 version
POST 14 - TIR Lens and GITD tape
POST 18 - Triple Mod


This is my review of the Sofirn SP32A!
Sofirn sent me the flashlight for review, after communication with Tracy Wan and Cissy (AliExpress). I have no other compensation than the flashlight itself.

Thanks Sofirn and in particular Cissy for sending the light for review!!

This light can be found on (non-affiliate links):
AliExpress: https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Sofirn-New-SP32A-Powerful-LED-Flashlight-18650-Cree-XPL2-1500lm-High-Power-Two-Groups-Light-Torch/32836337317.html
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Sofirn-Professional-Flashlight-Stepdown-Rechargeable/dp/B077BH9DZH

There are other ongoing reviews of the SP32A from other BLF members:
264: https://budgetlightforum.com/t/-/48562
Rusty Joe: https://budgetlightforum.com/t/-/48749

As some may have noticed, I am a bit of a “Sofirn” enthusiast, not only because they make nice flashlights at good/budget prices, but also because they really “listen” their costumers and implement some of the suggested things on their lights! For me, this is an example, that should be followed by others manufacturers!

This said, I’ll start the review!

[All photos were taken with a smartphone, so sorry for some “not-so-good quality”]
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GENERAL SPECS (Items marked with (*) are manufacturer’s information, specs not tested by me)
Body Material: Aircraft 6061 grade-aluminum alloy, Premium type III hard-anodized anti-abrasive finish, anti-crash and better heat exchange
Body Colour: Black
Reflector: Smooth (SMO)
Lens: AR coated (19.8mm x 2.0mm)
LED: CREE XPL-L2 V6 (5350-5700K) / Neutral White
Batteries used: 18650 protected or unprotected (*unprotected is suggested by manufacturer to achieve max brightness output - )
Working voltage: 2.8 – 4.3 Volts
Reverse Polarity Protection: Yes
Beam intensity: 11400 candela (*)
Distance throw of luminosity: 200m (*)
Impact resistance: 1 meter (*)
Waterproofness: 2m underwater (*)

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The Sofirn SP32A flashlight arrived inside a generic Sofirn box. No flashlight model is associated to the box, nor the box to the model inside. Yet, it arrived in good conditions and well packed inside paper/plastic bubble envelope.


Inside the package I found the flashlight, a generic lanyard, 2 o-rings, the user manual, a store card.
Inside the Package:

The user manual is written in English and Deutsch languages. English part is well written and explains how to operate the flashlight in questions like safety, maintenance and user interface. (These will be mentioned later in this review!)

User Manual:

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The SP32A is similar, in look, to the former SP32 model. Sofirn performed this evolution mainly on the user interface. And on the lens, as the SP32A has AR coated glass lens. Well and on the “bezel”, as the SP32A doesn’t have the “HOT” symbol ( despite it gets hotter than the SP32 ).

It is a nice looking flashlight; it feels nice to the touch, even if the anodization is not so “smooth” as their smaller lights (SF14, or SP10A/B).
It is well machined with no visible imperfections. The knurling is nicely done as well.

The flashlight has 3 parts: Head, Battery Tube and Tailcap.


Somehow my measurements are a bit different from those on the manual, but I admit my calliper may have caused this. Just for reference, from manufacturer: 122.7mm (length) x 22.6mm (diameter) x 23.6mm (head).
Length x Head x Switch x Tailcap

Weight (without battery):


The head is composed by the bezel, an AR coated lens, an o-ring that fits the edge of the reflector (SMO) under the lens, a LED gasket to sit the reflector, the XPL-L2 V6 LED, the driver and a retaining ring.

Unlike the SP32, the SP32A let us access to the LED easily as it is not glued. Nice one!

The button of the switch protrudes a bit what is helpful to find it when rotating the flashlight! This is a different feature, if compared with the SP32, which button stays lower , making it harder to find.

As mentioned, it is AR coated “toughned glass.

Nice and smooth (SMO). The upper edge of the reflector holds the thin o-ring, under the glass lens.

Perfectly centred, and clean! Surrounded by a white gasket, to sit the reflector and “protect” the LED.

This is how the LED looks like on Moonlight mode, in a closer look. As you can see, it has lots of blueish/purpleish things, that I guess will confer it a bit of green that the beam has… Maybe just a guess, though!?

It seems to be a DTP MCPCB, maybe 1.6mm, made of copper. Makes sense as it needs to sustain more than 1500 lumens on Turbo.
There is a good amount of gray thermal paste under the plate, and the wires are thick.
The MCPCB is secured by a black metal screw, and its shape would allow different soldering points.

Battery tube:
The battery tube came slightly lubricated. It has 2 o-rings, one in each extremity. The edges are not anodized. It allows to switch OFF the light if a little unscrew is done, on the tail or on the head.

Reversible tube
Unlike the SP32, the battery tube of the SP32A is reversible what allows to use it with the pocket clip towards the head and towards the tail.
For me, this is a plus comparing to the older model, as it allows different uses. (I wish we could do the same with the SP10A/B and the SF14… :FACEPALM:)

The tail is also equal to the one of the SP32. It has a lanyard whole outside. Note that the base isn’t covered with metal.

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The Sofirn SP32A takes protected and unprotected 18650 batteries. Just for reference, I tested the flashlight to fit 3 batteries, 2 protected and 1 unprotected.
However, in the user manual, the manufacturer specifically mentions that “Turbo requires 18650 battery of current high than 6 Amps. And Turbo cannot supports CR123A or RCR123A.

This means that it is better to use an unprotected high drain cell to get the advertised 1550 lumens that Turbo produces. I currently carry it with a Sony VTC6.

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Just a small comparison between the SP32A and the SP32 (already “modded” in the outside :D).

Moonlight >>>>>>Under UV light
Please note that despite that both flashlights use the same type of LED, the SP32A has more of a Cool White look that can be seen not only on the beam, but also under the UV light. The more “orange” (right) is the SP32 while the “yellowish”(left) is the SP32A.
The first time I noticed these differences was in my Convoy lights, in which the NW and WW had a more “orangish” look under the UV and the CW has a “yellowish” look.

So, despite using identical LEDs, they have different tints!

END OF PART 1 :smiley:

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PART 2 :wink:


Low battery indication & Low Voltage Protection
Flashlight blinks 3 times when voltage is below 3V.
If the voltage is lower than 2.8V, the light blinks during 1 minute and then shuts off.

Over-heat protection
After 2 minutes on Turbo, the light steps down to High Mode.
After 3 minutes on High, the light adjusts to Medium.

According to manufacturer, High and Turbo can still be used after the stepdown, but they have to be chosen manually (clicking).

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As I mentioned above, the tint from the Sofirn SP32A is somehow different from its older model, SP32.

The SP32A has some:

  1. white and “yellowish” on the hostpot,
  2. “yellowish” and “greenish” on the corona,
  3. white, “yellowish” and “purpleish”/rosy on the spill
  4. white, rosy, and “greenish”/ “yellowish” on the outer spill

Yeah! I know, so many “ish” here but that’s what my eyes seem to see! The beam is not uniform, at all!

Perhaps one of the major “issues” with this flashlight is the “greenish” look it has, contrary to the more white / rosy beam the SP32 has.

I tried the SP32A without lens and with a clear lens (not AR coated) but the green remains there. I guess it is the LED itself that maybe is more close to the 5700K than the 5350K.

For outside environment is nice, no problem at all (despite I can feel the differences when pointing the light at the grass), but in a white wall…not so good.

The following beamshots cannot show completely how it looks on the reality, but you can have a slight perception of how it may look!

SP23A vs SP32

SP32A vs Zanflare F1

SP32A vs Nitefox UT20

SP32A vs SP32 vs Zanflare F1 vs Nitefox UT20

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Memory: except for Strobe and Turbo, all the modes/levels have memory, so the light will turn ON in the last used mode/level.

The Sofirn SP32A has Electronic lockout, 2 Special Modes and 2 mode groups.


|| To change from the “Regular modes” to Ramping, we must press and hold:

|| 1) Ramping > Regular = 9 seconds. . 3 blinks > ON in High.

|| 2) Regular > Ramping = 3 seconds. . 3 blinks > ON in the Highest output level from Ramping.

While on “Regular modes” = TURN ON: single click > single click to change modes > TURN OFF: Press and hold

While on “Ramping” = TURN ON: single click > press and hold to ramp up/down > TURN OFF: single click
[Ramp up/down: press and hold; Ramp up and down/down and up: press and hold + release + quick press and hold again; Ramp up or down/stop/ramp up or down: press and hold + release 0.5 seconds + press and hold]

A) Electronic lockout
From OFF, 4 clicks to activate and deactivate lockout and. The light blinks 2 times to inform that it is locked. Whenever the button is pressed during lockout, the light blinks 2 times.
When the lockout is deactivated, the light turns ON in the last used mode or level (if on Ramping).

WARNING: taking the battery out of the flashlight will deactivate the electronic lockout.

B) Special Modes (Can be used both with the “Regular” and “Ramping” modes).
Turbo: double click from ON or OFF. 1550 lumen >>> 34 min
Strobe: triple click from ON or OFF. 900 lumen >>> 2h

WARNING: the special modes cannot be used if the flashlight is locked out electronically.

C) “Regular” modes:
Moonlight 4 lumen >>> 200h
Low 43 lumen >>> 20h55m
Medium 160 lumen >>> 5h37m
High 900 lumen >>> 1h

Well, the first 3 modes are very well balanced and spaced, and are really nice for indoor use.
From Medium to High there is a huge jump, making it ideal for outside environment where more light is needed.
From High to Turbo the difference can be felt in terms of luminosity, at least with a “not empty” battery. I didn’t try it yet with more depleted batteries so I can’t be sure how it performs.

Comparing the SP32 with the SP32A:
a) the SP32 moonlight level is lower (and is a special mode on that flashlight)
b) the last “regular” mode of both flashlights has almost the same luminosity level

A) SP32A vs SP32

B) Comparison side by side, from Moonlight to Turbo/Highest Output:

D) Ramping
From 1 lumen to 1067 lumen
Light blinks 2 times when reaching the top and the bottom levels.

It takes /- 7 seconds to got from the highest to the lowest levels and vice-versa. (As example, the Emisar D4 takes/- 3.5 seconds to reach the bottom/top).

Ramping mode starts in a very nice Moonlight mode, lower than the same level on the “Regular” modes.
The highest output of the ramping is higher than the highest output of the “regular” modes.

This ramping mode is not smooth as the Emisar D4 - my EDC flashlight lately - so some differences are noted, namely that:
a) When ramping down, the light dims steadily until about 40% luminosity, then it stabilizes even when pressing the button, and then decreases again and on the last +/- 5 to10%, it drops abruptly.
b) When ramping up, the first 5% increases abruptly, it doesn’t seem to have many “steps”, so it has a big leap, and then it stabilizes (maybe at the same 40%…) and the increases rapidly again reaching the max level.


SP32A (Moonlight from Ramping vs Turbo)

::::: ::::: ::::: ::::: ::::: :::::


Regular modes + turbo

Ramping levels + turbo

Regular modes vs Ramping (High and Turbo, only) (@25 meters)

From Moonlight to Turbo (regular modes) (@70meters)

_Comparison with other lights at Max Output (Outdoor @ 70 meters)
SP32A vs «Nitefox UT20 / Zanflare F1 / Emisar D4 / Amutorch AM30»

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With Diffuser from Convoy:

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OVERALL APPRECIATION (goods and bads, all mixed up :D):
1 – I like this flashlight, it is well built and the implementation of 2 group modes shows how Sofirn wants to expand and grow in this flashaholic world.

2 – Despite it has a Ramping mode, I guess I will prefer the “Regular Modes”, except if I need the Moonlight level. The ramping mode takes a while to go to top or bottom and that is a small “drawback” for me, especially being used to the Emisar D4.

3 – The tint on this flashlight is also not so good on the other 4 or 5 Sofirn flashlights I have! The greenish look is not so pleasant as the more yellowish/rosy/white that the other flashlights have. Maybe it was a “bad” batch of LEDs?

4 – On the same point, having the opportunity to change the LED is a plus, that we didn’t have on the SP32 model. So, for me this is an improvement from this brand.

5 – Despite some points I mentioned earlier, this is a very good flashlight and a really great output, that can (and will) be used in outside environment.

6 – The shortcut to Turbo with double click is a plus for me, as well as the strobe being hidden with triple click. Also, having lockout with 4 clicks is a very nice feature!

7 – I am not fan of “memory” in the flashlights and this one has it. I will have to learn to live with it, but I would prefer to always start on the Moonlight mode. Or, at least, have a shortcut to access to it, as the SP32 has.

8 – I would implement a lower Moonlight (similar to the one on the Ramping) on the “Regular” modes.

9 – I don’t know if mine has a “bug” while changing groups, but…9 seconds is a bit too much to change from one group to the other… If this is a bug, ok, no problem. If this is standard, Sofirn, please correct this!!

Once again, thanks Sofirn for the nice work on this and for sending the light for review!

Thanks for reading and feel free to comment or leave questions!

Best regards! :+1:

looks like a light impossible to get to the driver without ruining it

Hum, I confess that due to questions of time I opted not to get to the driver, but I guess this has the same shape as the SP10A/B (with a shelf) so unscrewing the screw on the MCPCB and the retaining ring below the driver, I guess it is be easy to access it.
I can try to show it meanwhile :wink:

Thanks for the review. I have one on order from Ali Express, it’s nice to read what I’m waiting for.

This Sofirn Company is hitting a lot of hot spots.

Well…after all, maybe I won’t be able to show it :expressionless:
First the MCPCB screw cannot be easily unscrewed, and I guess I would damage the LED to force the screw to get out.

Despite that, I tried to unsolder the wires from the driver to the emitter. I don’t know if I’m not trying hard enough, or if my soldering iron is not powerful enough, but I’ve been unsuccessful to unsolder it.

And I didn’t want to risk damaging any component of the driver by heating it too much as I did with the SP10A driver :person_facepalming:
So I stopped! Sorry for not being able or brave enough to show you the driver :zipper_mouth_face:

I also noticed that the spring bypass is only on the driver, and does not seem to pass through it, but I couldn’t verify this situation more deeply! :person_facepalming:

Thanks JasH!! Yup, they are getting better and improving in some aspects lately, and I guess the inputs from their flashlights’ users are an important point!
I hope you like the flashlight when you get it :wink:

I’ve uploaded a video with a comparison between the SP32A and the Emisar D4 while ramping up and down. There are differences in timing, as can be seen.
The Emisar D4 was set for 71ºC.

Both started to go up and down at the same time!

So, I decided to try one thing with this flashlight that I had already tried with the SP32 version! A little “Lego” :smiley:
I used the Convoy S2+ short tube, in reversed position (anodized threads with not anodized edge upwards and clear threads with anodized edge downwards). Guess what? It worked!

MORE: the Convoy clip works pretty fine as well (at least in the position the photos show) :smiley:

So, here are some pictures :wink: From the full size to the small size :smiley:


You say “no PWM” but the picture suggests otherwise.

Jerommel, from what I’ve recently “learned”, those traces seem to be from the Constant Current driver.
It can only be seen with the camera really on the top of the Led. If used on filming of photography , they wil not appear.
I’ve compared some lights with PWM and others that don’t have it. Examples:
Sofirn SF10 (PWM) > Lumintop Tool AA (PWM, Low and Mid) > Sofirn SF14 (No PWM)

Please note the differences in the lines in the left and middle. Those are PWM.

Well, i have a SP32, and it has PWM too, but the frequency is very high, like >20kHz
Regulated current will not produce lines.

Maybe you’re right! I don’t know what to think on this anymore :person_facepalming:
I thought the “rainbow colours” produced in some levels were not PWM, but apparently they are ! But in a higher frequency…

I’ll change what’s written…

Nice beam shots and good review sir. :beer:

Thanks 264 :wink:

BTW, after the “shorty” version mode last night, I decided to try something different: change the reflector and put a TIR lens on it :wink:
As I mentioned on the review, the tint is not the one I like the most, specially because I expected it to have a more Neutral White look.
So, I gave it a try :wink: [glass lens + o-ring + TIR + original gasket]

BEFORE TIR (Reflector)


Lens vs Reflector

I also added some Glow-in-the-dark tape over the MCPCB and around the TIR Lens! Just because :sunglasses:
GITD tape :smiley:

EDIT (30 December):

I took some beamshots with the TIR lens installed!! The range of illumination doesn’t seem to be much affected with the TIR vs Reflector!
40m >>> 70m

After seeing this video, the Sofirn engineer (through Tracy Wan) said that the stop on/”slow” ramping “may be due to the driver have not debugged to the best condition”. So I don’t know if the other drivers of this light will behave the same way, or if it was a “issue” of all the lights. On further models, the ramping will be improved.


Well done on a very thorough review and sharing with us.

Just got one of these myself.

Could the Obvious pause in the middle of the Ramping Mode be some sort of indication to do with Driver efficiency?

Just a thought as TK mentioned that the Emissar D4 powers up at the Max Regulated point after a Battery Change or Physical Lock Out.

Anyway, really loving this light, and lots of it’s Sofirn siblings, SP35 Heat-Sinking Doubts excepted, (smells Very Hot inside when changing batteries, even on lower modes!).

They do seem to be trying really hard to please.

Wouldn’t be surprised if they build a BLF project for us in the future!

Many Thanks for your Hard Work reviewing this.
S-L :slight_smile:

Thanks for your words and reading Splott-Light! :wink:

Well, I’m not sure about this, but it may have something to do with the driver (the channels?) used. Tracy from Sofirn said that their engineer said that the issue on ramping ““may be due to the driver have not debugged to the best condition”. I don’t know what does this mean, but maybe it was some technical issue on the driver, and maybe not extensive to all the units.
Does yours have this?

Hum, the SP35 seemed a solid model… Maybe some heatsink issues, then?
Aside from the SP32A, I only have the SP32 and their smaller lights (SP10A, SP10B, SF14 and a dismantled SF10).
But yes, they are working well and they are asking for some contributions to one of their new models (named K6, you can see in my signature).

If they keep up with this work, quality and good “relationship” with their buyers, I see them working with a BLF team for sure :wink:

BTW, currently I’m using the SP32A in the short + TIR version and I like it a looot :smiley:

Thanks for reading and enjoy your flaslight :sunglasses:

So, I decided to disassemble and mod my SP32A!
I turned it into a triple!

Here are some photos of the original components, and of the mod!




“Pill” – I bought a piece of brass, as I didn’t find copper in the adequate diameter; later it was cut in some pieces, tall enough for the height need for a pill to sit over the in-built shelf. I filled it and made a hole in the middle. The rest you see below :wink:

The MCPCB used is from Jaxman Store and this is the CW XP-G2, and the TIR optics was also from Jaxman.
I soldered new wires to the driver and re-done the spring bypass as the original was not in place anymore.
I added glow-in-the-dark tape all over the fins and other places, including arount the TIR, on the inside :wink:


:sunglasses: :+1:

Very cool. What is the max run time?

Thanks 264 :wink:
Hum…I can’t tell the runtime as I don’t have ways to measure the battery drain :person_facepalming:
I don’t have DMM or clampmeter (yet) to measure that, I’m sorry! I’ll post it as soon as I get one :+1: