What are your favorite emitters?

Interested to hear what other people work with

What are your favorite emitters, and why?

Cree XHP35 : throwy, powerful, consistent tint, CCT options
Nichia E21A/E17A: CRI, consistent tint
Luminus SST20: CRI, 3V, CCT options
Samsung LH351D: CRI, high output, 3V

I like emitters that output a lot of light, and don't heat up quickly.

That's pretty much recent Cree emitters.

They don't have high CRI, but that's a sacrifice I'm willing to make.

Nearly the only domed emitter that I really like is Luxeon V (&V2). I like a lot of domeless, like XHP35HI, XPL-Hi, CULNM…

LH351D, nice tint and good CRI.
MT-G2, creamy white goodness.
Cree L/L2 in 4C but only behind a TIR lens, nice “warm sunlight” color on the cheap.

Xhp70.2 and xhp50.2 (3v version) 5000k bins are my favorite. You won’t get higher output from a 5050 size emitter than the xhp50.2. Really like the sst40 though too… crazy lumens out of a single die and low vf. I like crazy output more then CRI I suppose.

The Cree XHP 50.2 4000k High CRI in my Zebralight H604C is the best emitter I own. It covers all the bases…. high output, great tint (no green), 95 CRI.

Unfortunately, I haven’t been able find this emitter anywhere else.

For readily accessible aftermarket emitters I prefer Cree XPL HI 4000K 5D. It has excellent output, tint and throw. I can live without the high CRI.

I also like the SST20 4000K high CRI, but for practical use I always grab XPL HI first. The drastically lower output and higher heat of SST-20 detracts from my use more than the high CRI adds to it.

Sw45K for a nice tint on my edc aaa light
70.2 for the output and XHP35 for throw

How’s the E21A tint and efficiency vs. SW45K?

I could not agree more, right down to the 4C. In the 3535 package, I still really like the Nichia 219b, yes B. The output is not high, but the light is a super high quality. If we get down and dirty the the SW45k and the 3500k variants are my favorites.

The MT-G2 is a wonderful led, so smooth and as stated above very creamy output. The SST-20 FD2’s are also pretty good, but they really want to be a thrower led and need the right reflector or good optics to perform well. I do love the LH351D in 3500k also.

The 4Cs are an interesting bunch. My first S2+ with a 4C in a reflector was kinda horrible. On first sight I was like, “No way that’s a 4C, as that’s way too yellow”, but when doing ceiling-bounce, it was quite nice.

Awful angular tint-shift made the hotspot overly yellow and the spill overly blue, the classic fried-egg beam.

But behind a TIR lens, mixing those colors pretty nicely, it’s a great beam.

Pretty sure they were all XM-L2s, as XM-Ls would’ve been pretty old by then.

And I suspect anything warmer would be the same, more phosphor implying more tint-shift.

Best overall LED in my experience would be Nichia 219C CRI90 3500K and higher CCT, especially 4000K because it’s such a neutral CCT i.m.o, but 3500 is actually nicer. The 5000K is very nice too.
I’m not sure why i prefer them over 219B V1 though, but i do, somehow…

Lately I’ve used my first 100 of these hi CRI 5mm 3400K LED’s from rngwn:

2300k/3400k/5000k/5800k 5mm LED 95+ CRI

Already started on the second 100 pack, I have more on the way and also some of the 2300K to try.

They come out to about 16 cents a piece delivered at quantity 100 and I have found all kinds of use to turn craptastic 5mm LED lights wonderful. It doesn’t cost much to spread a little hi CRI goodness 10 lumens at a time. A 60 degree floody beam, warm white, tolerant being over driven. Most recent was some old useless solar path lights I found in the garage.

My new favorite emitter is the CREE XHP 70.2

Some people don't like the tint shift.

My flashlight with an XHP 70.2 is Neutral White (5000K).

The hotspot is somewhat warm (yellow) and the spill is neutral (white).

The tint shift bothers some people on BLF, but it doesn't bother me.

For outdoor use it kicks arse.

My current favorite emitter is 4000K SST-20 FD2 bin from Kaidomain.

  • Great tint
  • Great CRI
  • Good throw
  • Good output

Forgot whose review, maybe The Flasholic’s, showed a light with a 70.2 in an outdoors setting, and the tint-shift was still very visible. :confounded:

SBT90.2 5700K and E21A 2700K

I’d think it is a lottery thing. That, and cameras don’t show what exactly what you’d see in person. Even on a white wall my sc700d doesn’t look bad, just a tad green. Mine is 5000k though and I am guessing he got a warmer option.

Controversial opinion, but I think I’d actually rather have a tinge of green or yellow than a purplish beam. ZeroAir loves his BLF-348 with the purple beam and compares everything else to that. I don’t really understand. I prefer to have lighting that mimics light found commonly in nature. In his latest review he compares two beams and dislikes the 70.2 emitter for being yellow. Personally I think the purple is distracting in a bad way. On low levels the 70.2 he shows (4000k) has a brownish halo that I can understand might bother people. But on high levels i think it looks better than the purple BLF-348

my favorites are the two 219b on the left:
sw30, sw45k, not the Neutral Green xml2
I like the warmth and color rendering of the sw30, especially at night
I like the neutral white and color rendering of the sw45k, especially during the day

the xml2 is pending replacement