Zanflare F1 vs Convoy S2+ vs BLF A6

I’m having trouble looking for a good EDC flashlight. These seem to be the best choices as of now (based on hours upon hours of research). They all seem to be similar in terms of performance and price but the zanflare’s USB rechargeable capability would be nice to have. What would you get? Pros and cons of getting one over the other?

Thanks for your input!

Edit: I don’t plan on modding the flashlight (not anytime soon anyway). Also are there any significant differences between the drivers for these?

The A6 is hard to say no to as a nice EDC light. If you are needing on board charging then of course the Zanflare would work perfect. The Zanflare is a bit more throwy than the A6. You can make the A6 even smaller with a short tube and 18350. There are lots of choices in EDC tube lights but if you have it narrowed down to those three I would choose the A6.

The best is subjective. I’m only familiar with the Convoy S2+ of the three you mentioned. I’ve got a bunch of them. The grey one is only $9.99 shipped on Gearbest.

I’ve got the Zanflare F1 in CW, and have been very happy with it. Haven’t tried the other two. The F1 is solidly built and puts out a decent amount of light. The side switch to run the modes is a plus for me, as is the way the charging port is accessed by slightly unscrewing the ring just below the side switch instead of having a flap just covering the port. When turbo steps down, you can just double click the side switch to go right back to turbo again. I think I got mine on a sale for around $14 or so, and I think it’s a bargain.

The F1 is a nice light. Be aware, its somewhat bigger than the others, and bigger than some of the other USB rechargeable tube lights, like the Convoy S9 & Eagle Eye X2R.

You can’t really go wrong with any of them, though the old 3/5 mode driver used in some of the cheaper Convoy S2+ lights on Banggood, etc, isn’t nearly as nice as the UI on the A6 and Convoy Biscotti drivers.

BLF A6. It’s great in it’s stock form. No matter if it’s scuffed up or is not perfectly correct hardware wise when you get it.
It is possibly the most mod friendly flashlight you can buy.
There are a few people here who’d probably be willin to mod it for you just for the fun of it (parts + a tip).
Disclamer: I’m not soliciting, just saying.

BLF A6 is great. I have a black A6 in Cool White with a Non-anodized A6 in Neutral White on the way that’s how much I like it :slight_smile:

It’s getting a rest at the moment with S41 torch de jour but the 18350 battery doesn’t last long so A6 will be back in my pocket soon.

If you like USB recharge, consider the S42 on special atm at Banggood.

A lot of people seem to dislike the S42 UI, but there is an S43 coming out soon with a potentially better UI. If you’re interested, it might be worth waiting for reviews of the S43 and then deciding.

You can always buy an S2+ / F1 / A6 to tide you over in the meantime :slight_smile:

I have the S2+ (old and new versions) and the A6, but not the F1.

The A6 is the one to get for maximum brightness on turbo, although some people have reported quality control problems. One of mine arrived with a defective tailswitch.

The S2+ is a workhorse light - not as bright on turbo as the A6, but reliable. The Desert Sand version with Biscotti is nice, because it offers you twelve mode sets to choose from. It is throwier than the older version, though. I recommend buying directly from Convoy on AliExpress if you want to make sure of getting a Biscotti-equipped light:

The three you have chosen are good but I would also put the Sofirn 32 A V2 into contention .

I have had all 3, the A6 in neutral white is in my book by far the best. I love the UI. I have 2 A6’s, and 3 S2+’s, but I gave away my F1. It is too large, the usb cover is flimsy, the mode spacing is poor,it is hard to even tell the difference between high and turbo, and the pouch doesn’t fit. Also I am biased against Zanflare because only one of the 4 I have ordered both arrived and worked. I suspect the Sofirn is worth a look as mentioned above, I have one on the way.

I don’t have the (or any) Zanflare, but there are a couple of things I haven’t seen mentioned so far.

You can get a short tube for the S2+, and it’s available in more colors than the other 2.

If you get an S2+, definitely get biscotti. It’s different than the A6 UI, but better than the old 3/5 Convoy UI.

The big difference between the A6 and S2+ is that the A6 is an enthusiast light. You won’t hand it to a child, because they could get burned. A 6x7135 S2+ is pretty safe to loan to most people, and the UI is (IMO) simpler. But the A6 is brighter.

BTW, you can get a short tube for A6 (S1) as well.

That had been mentioned previously (toddcshoe) as if it was the only one you can get a short tube for. That’s why I wanted to point out that you can also get one for the S2+.

Of the three lights A6 is the best. A6 has better UI than S2+ and its brighter. I don’t like F1 because you have to operate two switches and its little too big for EDC.

I have all three lights. Here are my comments in order of preference:

BLF A6 - I really like being able to increase / decrease the light level without having to click through all the levels. Hope that makes sense - you can adjust the level of light up or down depending on how long the tail switch is pressed. This is the light I take with me most of the time.

Convoy S2+ - I have the old 6x7135, 3/5 mode UI. If you decide on an S2+ don’t cheap out and get this version. It has 3 modes plus strobe and SOS that can both be turned off by turning the light off after it flashes. If you use low a lot, it will flash a few seconds after turning it on every time you turn it on. Very annoying. The light has been very dependable in some fairly rugged conditions, so it could be my #1 pick with a better UI.

Zanflare F1 - I hardly ever use this light. The bigger size has already been pointed out, however, to me the light just feels much larger than the other two. Also, the tail switch on mine has very little travel and it takes a hard thumb press to turn the light on/off. I find myself holding it in a closed fist to thumb the tail switch, then have to turn the light around to thumb the side switch if I need to change modes. This has become my travel light due to its ability to use my phone charger to recharge the battery. I leave it on in the lowest setting when staying in an unfamiliar hotel room.

I don’t have the Sofirn mentioned by a few other posters, but I do have a few of their lights and they are all high quality for the price.

My advice, if you’re going to get an S2+, would be to get the one with Biscotti UI. It’s much better than the old 3/5 mode UI. I have both.

I have Zanflare F1. Somehow small drop of water came in reflector and can not go out. And unfortunately the head is sealed.

I got my Astrolux S1 3D last week - it’s the same light as BLF A6. Now that I had a chance to play around with it, I think I prefer my Convoy S2+ 8x7135 Biscotti better. I like the slightly more throwy beam of XP-L HI in the S2+ (15k cd for S2+ vs 10k cd for S1). The S1 has a bit more overall output, but it draws twice the amount of current and heats up like crazy while doing it, plus the turbo only lasts 40 seconds. And unless you hold them side by side, you really can’t tell that S1 outputs more light.

The UI is fine on both lights - it’s just a matter of getting used to.

Okay, everyone’s gonna dogpile on me for saying this, but I don’t have an A6. I keep hearing it’s a great light, and I’ll leave it to the choir to preach about it. :smiley:

That said, the ones mentioned kick arse.

The S2+ is the de facto first-light everyone should get, but DO NOT DO NOT DO NOT get the ones with the 3/5 modes, because the blink-on-low will make you want to launch it into space, or at least fling it against a very hard wall. It downright pisses me off.

But it’s easily moddable. You can get a shorty tube and use an 18350, and switch back on a whim if you want longer runtime of an 18650. It takes 20mm TIR lenses so easily and smooths out the beam and virtually eliminates any fried-egginess (yellow-white hotspot, blue-white spill). Standard 17mm drivers will drop right in, you can swap emitters ’til you puke, add a lighted switch, whatever floats yer boat.

The new colors, orange and purple (and teal, but ain’t got), in addition to red, blue, green, gray, the other gray, the other other gray that’s almost black, clear/silver, etc., all let you go crazy.

The F1 is probably the best-thought-out light I’ve seen in a loooooong time. Love the tailswitch for on/off, and sideswitch for mode-changes. Blinkies are nicely hidden, difficult if not impossible to get to accidentally. You can almost forget they’re there. The usb-port is covered by the screw-ring, not a dinky rubber flap. The short-travel tailswitch is nice and crisp, which I like, but some people don’t.

My only grex? The greening of the beam thanks to the AR-coated glass. With clear uncoated glass, the tint would be pretty good. NW is worse than CW, ironically enough.

Other than that, I love it.

Alas, the Sofirn SP32v2 deserves mention. Take an S2+, make it a side-clicky only, throw in a r/y/g battery-level indicator in the switch, use a DTP-mounted LED with temp control and squeeze out a bunch more lemons, also throw in a pretty decent ramping option in addition to stepped modes, and you got the v2. Plus, it comes in “pale gold” (infinitely hard to describe, but quite nice) and silver (still in transit), and you got a really sharp-looking light.

Honorable mention goes to the Nitefox UT20. I still edc that with the S2+ deep-carry clip which fits and looks as if it were designed for the light. Also has a battery-level indicator in the sideswitch, the tailswitch is a forward-clicky!, so you can do momentary-on. Has usb charging as well. It’s a monster, longer’n even an S2+, but with the deep-carry clip, I couldn’t care less, as it rides nice’n’low in my pocket.

There are a whole bunch of other lights like the TK18 (ramping+stepped tubelight), which are also quite nice, but damn, the field’s gotten really crowded the past coupla years.

Just a few years before, if you didn’t want to pay big bux for a Streamlight, Suefire, etc., you were pretty much limited to a ’501, ’502, or zoomies like the ’68 or ’98, or real craplights that, believe me, you didn’t want.

Hell, my first “good” light was a discontinued Quark 2AA-X for 80bux each! Performance is about on-par with the 15buk Sofirn SF13, minus the really nice twisty-switch for instant-turbo.

My advice? Get at least 1 of each of the above, then decide for yourself. :))

Sooner or later, you will, anyway, so just save yourself the angst.

My first S2+ had the 3/5 UI. I don’t think biscotti UI existed back then. Honestly, I don’t mind the 3/5… it’s just a single blink on low - doesn’t bother me much. Obviously, biscotti is a lot nicer.