XP-G/Nichia 219 with a XM-L reflector or TIR, pros and cons?


anybody has experience, valuable information about combining an XP-G/Nichia 219 with an XM-L reflector or TIR optic?

Since XM-L is bigger, the reflector should fit, but what will the result of using XM-L reflector or TIR be with the smaller emitter?
Will the angle be smaller? Will there be artifacts? Compared to using a reflector made for XP-G/Nichia 219.


Comparison pictures welcome :wink:

In my limited experince, using an XP-G LED is pot luck using a XM-L refector whether you get a satisfactory beam or not. Old-Lumens uses XM-L TIR lenses with Nichia 219 LED's with a nice beam and I have the same experience using XP-G's with the same TIR lens.

Yeah makes me want to hit my head to the wall that I did not order the single emitter Carclo from IS…

Do they fit without the holder? Or is it better to use the holder for TIRs?

I’ve spotted XP-Gs in XML reflectors on this forum, it’s not so rare.

mixing and matching LEDs and TIRs mostly works fine, as long as you maintain the correct optic>LED substrate distance. All that generally happens is the spot gets bigger or smaller with LED die size. Using any of the XP/XM family optics is usually fine with their holders (XR-E optics need their holder cutting down to use with XP/XM LEDs). However, unless the optic you want to use sits directly on top of the LED, ie. no gap between optic base and LED substrate, you do need to use the holder or at least some kind of spacer between the LED and optic to maintain the correct distance. Too high = ringy beam, too low/ close = floodier beam.

I’ve used that Carclo narrow (10003?) and it’s a fiddly bugger to use (have to use the holder, but it didn’t fit my 20mm star). Wasn’t massively impressed with the beam either. Kind of a square spot inside a circle. The 10deg LED-DNA optics are very nice and are easy to use; if you want more of a spot and a defined edge (more reflector like), the Ledil LC1 without it’s holder works very well.

The only reflector I’ve used with both XP-G and XM-L was a Regina, which worked fine with both LEDs (bigger spot with XM-L, same throw) although the hole needed drilling out to work with an XM-L.

Yes, Carclo 10003 20.0MM PLAIN TIGHT TIR.

Compare to a reflector I don’t even know what angle to choose. Is it the angle of a hotspot? Or angle of the whole beam with spill? Because normally reflector beams seem like 60° to me with the spill.

usually go with the smallest angle you can find unless you want a flood light :slight_smile: Angle quoted is usually FWHM (or some combination of those letters), which is the angle from centre at which the light intensity is 50% of the centre. Still, it’s a bit of a gamble as to what it’ll actually look like, so you’d be best off perusing the beamshot thread on mtbr (beamshot thread | Mountain Bike Reviews Forum) and seeing if you find something you like. If you want the tightest beam, I haven’t found anything with a tighter spot than the LC1 without the holder, but personally I prefer the LED-DNA 10deg optic (it’s supposedly narrower with XP-G) although it has a bigger spot than most people prefer. It makes for an incredibly useful light though, even at mid-current levels (my lights with that optic max out at ~1.7A).

Nice, and nice builds there, too bad many seem to use heavy machinery.
Thanks for sharing.

Still waiting for my package from IS, I hope USPS did not send it for a round trip around the globe.

no problem. Yeah, a lot of the builds are very nicely machined, but you can make great lights with just pipe couplings or 1in.sq. aluminium tubing and a hacksaw (my approach). Even Hammond boxes have been used successfully, although they tend to lack the surface area needed for high output lights. I think someone even just stuck an LED to a CPU heatshink and filled the gaps in around the wires with gobs of silicone - not what I’d choose, but pretty effective none the less :slight_smile:

Well I’ll putting one XM-L on a CPU heatsink for sure, need some backlight for my monitor XD

And a light for tinkering.

It seems more costly to me to make a bike light than to buy one of the $35-40 bike lights.
Been thinking just getting the host from somebody and making the rest myself when I need such a powerful bike light.

I dont know if this is any help or not. I forgot I'd done this previously. HD-2010's with XM-L and XP-G2.


it’s definitely more costly to build your own light than buy a cheap Chinese knockoff, but then the fairer comparison would be to one of the mid-range lights from US or European companies, in which case you’d be saving a fair bit of money and getting a light that’s exactly what you want (and upgradeable). Besides, cheap Chinese lights are not without their flaws - the batteries of the really cheap ones (<$50) are at best crap and at worst dangerous, plus the drivers frequently fail and the torch/ flashlight based UIs are a pain for mtbing. The mtbr DIY lights section sees a regular procession of “my Magicshine light has crapped out, how do I fix it?” posts.

If you want to start with a nice host, one of the best ways of doing it is with an Easy2LED housing. I’ve built a light with the 20mm housing and my friend was extremely happy with it.

Looks nice, thank you both :slight_smile:

I have to run and check the mail. Can’t wait for the delivery.


Guess what’s missing?
The Nichia :~

What a luck…
==> email.


Hope to order some more stuff 0:)
If it goes well, I will attempt to squeeze the 20mm board and lens into a D4/Xiaozhi. If not, then just use it elsewhere. Also trying to get a XP-G2 R5 3D for comparison!

Perhaps something like this :bigsmile:

I was planing to do a proper how-to-build topic with pictures but simply could not find time…

Build is not complicated (at least for squeezing in nichia triple inside) but whole light as a package requires lot of effort.
Front lip of the pill has to be sanded down in order to fit 20mm star and hole bored for wires. Inner thread for pill does not go far enough to screw pill all the way to front with new optics, so existing glass lens and o-ring needs to be retained. As I’m using 105c driver stock switch could be a problem in the long run so I replaced it with a “standard” 20mm switch assembly, but that required sanding down switch retaining ring and threads on barrel to accommodate thicker switch. After all of that there was too much room for 18650 battery (even FT18650 was loose) so I had to solder brass contact nipple and spring on driver in order to make reliable contact.

Xiaozshi with triple Nichia setup is currently my favourite light. Color rendering is simply superb and if needed it can now produce quite a lot of light…

Exactly what I’m after if IS does not overlook again that I want to buy more stuff while they send me the missing single Nichia…

What switch did you use? I would be interested in that.

The threads suck if they are too short :confused:
Might have to use the glass if that is enough or make a copper pill extension and solder it on top of the pill. Compartment is going to be big, yes, I don’t see it as a problem, easily solvable.

Also waiting for FastTech to list or not list the host, since I want another host to fiddle with.

Make a guide, pictures, list the issues to build it and your solutions, I already thought about it. And fastforward that guide to me :smiley:
Or hide it in case IS forgets to read and I won’t be able to buy more stuff.
In that case I’m making a single Nichia+SinkPAD D4/Xiaozhi.

I used this one http://www.manafont.com/product_info.php/ultrafire-replacemnet-tailcap-switch-component-5pcsset-p-7451

Threads had to be sanded down but there is still 5 mm left (from 6.5-7mm) no problem with that.

Copper pill extension is excellent idea ! Not only it would solve inner thread length and battery compartment problem but it would enhance heat sinking !

Exactly. Should we start a thread for it? :slight_smile:
still waiting for IS to reply darn it why didn’t write it above the pictures I bet they overlooked it! Now can’t get hold of them again.

I have this thick flat copper bar, 19.80*2.95mm, could work well for it to create the “spacer” needed.

I’m so impatient! 10 days waiting and all I have is 3 XM-L2s and my personal bonus has to be shipped again.

Few more pictures…

Ah I get it now, you cut the damn body down to fit the big switch.
I don’t want to do that. But if you reduce the reflector depth this is possible. Without it is not and you wouldn’t fit the batter in otherwise.

I’m trying to get some 20mm reflectors from IS to compare with the 20mm tir optics I already have. If/when I get fast tech sorted out I’ll post some beam shots here.

Awesome Rufusbduck.

And Craig replied from IS, so I’m going to have more Nichias and the triple optic! So happy :slight_smile:

Now lets somebody push FastTech for me to list the better Xiaozhi host! CNQG has the host yes, and darn cheap yes, but with wrong switch PCB and boot. I only mind the PCB actually I have spare boots already.