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Thread: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

  1. #1
    Flashaholic* WadeF's Avatar
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    Default Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    If a moderator feels my review is good enough, please move it to the Flashlight Review forum, thank you.


    This is a review of the brand new Zebralight H30-Q5 which runs on a single CR123A or R123A! This Saturday I was attending PF10 at Milky's place so I asked Fenix-store to express ship my Zebralight to Milky's place as I would be leaving before the mail would get to my house (If you're wondering I paid full price for the H30 minus CPF8). When I got to Milky's, after an introduction and checking out some things we checked his mail and there it was! I brought alone a fully charged AW R123A 3.7v, and some primaries. I figured everyone at PF10 would like to check out the new H30, and many there were very excited to see it, and they were very impressed with it, as was I. Once it was dark outside I used the H30 all night long, as I made many trips back and forth to my vehicle in the dark and since PF10 is usually held during a new moon and Milky lives in the country, it was DARK! The low was great for moving around and not disturbing anyone else's vision. If I didn't have the H30 I would have been using my H50, but I found the H30's UI easier and quicker to use. I had a blast with it, especially when I was surrounded with many other people wearing lights on their heads so I didn't look odd, I fit right in at PF10!

    I have owned the H50-Q5, which is the AA version, for some time. I love the Zebralight H50-Q5 so I just had to try the H30. The H30 runs on a single CR123A, or R123A/RCR123A, and offers slightly more output on HIGH than the H50. It also has a tighter beam pattern than the H50, so more of the lumens are focused straigh ahead, but it is still floody and lights up a large area around you. Much of the H50's spill is lost into space, or down on your face if you don't have the little glare shield installed.

    I haven't seen the specs listed on Zebralight's website yet, but they are listed on Fenix-store's site here.




    These are the main specs:
    • Runs off both primary CR123A and rechargeable RCR123
    • Out the front: High - 80 lumens, Medium - 20 lumens, Low - 4 lumens
    • Narrower flood beam, 80-degree flood beam, without a hotspot.
    • Center area lux reading is about 130% over that of the H50 driven at the same current.
    • Runtimes: High - 2.5 hours, Medium - 21 hours, Low - 3.7 days
    • Recessed lens, as a glare shield plus some protection to the lens.
    • Traditional clip with narrower gap between the clip and the light.
    • Lanyard hole on the clip.
    • Shorter than the H50, volume and weight are about the same:
      • Weight with CR123A - 40g, with battery and headband - 62g
      • Dimensions - 21mm (head portion 25mm), height 56mm
    • Push-button switch for single hand operations.
    • Construction: the head portion and the battery tube portion are in one piece, machined from solid Alcoa aluminum rods, for better heat dissipation. The switch is a light-touch kind with a reliability spec at one million cycles.
    Digital 3-level Ramping

    Press and hold:
    Cycle through low, med and high, release to set when ON, click to OFF

    When ON, press and hold:
    Cycle through low, med, and high, release to set

    When you go to adjust output, if you are in medium and you go to set it to high, or low, you press and hold the button to change levels. From medium, you would start back at low, then medium, then high, rather than it going from medium right into high. This can be nice if you are in medium, or high, and you want to drop to low, you just press and hold and you drop to low, and if you continue to hold, medium, then high, repeat. Or you can simply press and release the button to turn the light off, then turn it back on in low.

    I was very happy to see the push-button on the H30 as the H50 requires twisting to change modes. This can be a little annoying when it's on your head, and it requires two hands. The H30 can be turned off, on, and adjusted with a single hand, leaving the other hand free.

    CLICK ON PHOTOS FOR LARGER VIEW

    Like the H50 the H30 comes with a comfortable and adjustable head band:


    One change from my H50 is a black rubber holder for the light, my H50 has a GITD one, but the H30 has a GITD rubber holder attached to the lanyard:


    Here's the H30 tailstanding:


    Now laying on it's side. This light can be used in so many ways!


    Here's a better shot of the push-button:


    Here's an even better and closer shot of the push button. You don't have to press hard at all, just a light press and you can turn the light off and on, adjust levels, etc.


    Close up of the emitter and lens, which is recessed to offer added protection and to prevent glare into your eyes:


    Here is the backside of the H30, there is a split ring which can attach to an included clip for keychain carry, etc:


    One of the things I love about the Zebralights is they come with a lot of accessories included. Always a plus in my book! You get the headband with rubber holder, which allows the light to be easily turned to adjust where the beam is going, you get a lanyard with a rubber holder if you wanted to just wear the light around your neck (the beam is so wide, as long as you have the light facing forward it will light up everything infront of you), there is also a rubber holder with a clip so you can clip it to a shirt pocket, pants pocket, brim of a hat, etc. There is also the clasp so you can attach it to your keychain, etc. Two spare o-rings, and a GITD push-botton cap!

    I'm going large with this picture so you can see everything, click for an even higher resolution image:


    Closeup of the holder with clip:


    Here is the H30 in the holder with clip:


    I decided to switch to the GITD (Glow in the dark) switch cover, because GITD ROCKS! Here is what the switch looks like with the cover removed:


    Quick tip, I found it easier to install the rubber switch cover onto the retaining ring with the screws through it, rather than trying to line up all the holes on the light and then working the screws through, YMMV:


    Tada, H30 with GITD push-button cover:


    Here's the inside of the tail cap, and the tailcap threads of the body, and the o-ring. Everything seems fine here. I like the 4 solder points on the spring, should keep it from going anywhere. O-ring makes a good seal.


    I've been powering my H30 with a AW protected R123A 3.7v lithium ion for guilt free floody lumens. Here is a size comparision:


    Now, time for some beam shots! It's hard finding one exposure that captures the LOW as well as the HIGH. I went with 7 seconds at f/2.8 and ISO 100. This seems to show the low pretty well (as I see it), but high gets a little over exaggerated. The main point of these shots is to show the beam profile, and compare the H30 to the H50. I forgot to lock in my WB for some of these shots, so it's auto WB for some, daylight WB for others. I will post the H30 followed by the H50 for each level, and I was standing about 10 feet from the wall, in the same spot for each shot:

    H30 LOW:


    H50 LOW (H30's beam is more narrow than the H50, 80 degrees vs. 120 degrees):


    H30 MEDIUM:


    H50 MEDIUM:


    H30 HIGH (brighter than it really looks, although if your eyes are fully adapted to the dark, it might look like that when you first fire it up )


    H50 HIGH:


    At the 10 feet or so I was from the wall both of these lights have no probem flooding the room with light. Even at 80 degrees, the H30 has plenty of coverage. To get a better idea of the beam's angle I took shots standing an arms length from the wall. I did my best to get in the same spot and look the same way. Exposure adjusted to 1 second so I don't over expose every shot:

    H30 LOW:


    H50 LOW:



    H30 MEDIUM:


    H50 MEDIUM:


    H30 HIGH:


    H50 HIGH:


    Here is a more straight on shot, standing back about 4 feet from the wall. Same exposure, 1 second f/2.8 ISO 100.

    H30 MEDIUM:


    H50 MEDIUM:


    That's it for pictures, for now. I may add some outdoor shots in the coming days, or if anyone has any requests for pictures, let me know.

    I didn't get a chance to do any 1 meter LUX readings, but I did try to compare the output between a primary CR123A and a R123A 3.7v with the H30, and the R123A has a tad more output on a R123A, but it isn't much of a difference, probably not noticeable to the eye.

    I really love these Zebralights and I can't wait to see what they come up with next. I hear there is a 18650 version on the way. Sounds like that would be getting a little big for a headlamp, at least once you are used to these little Zebralights. However, I think I'm going to have to get whatever Zebralight comes out with. I'll have a whole heard of Zebralights at some point I'm sure.

    These are make great book lights as they put nice even light over the pages. You can adjust the level to what is comfortable, but I can read fine with it set on low, and the H30 would be even brighter on low since the beam is more focused.

    To check out Zebralight's website visit http://www.zebralight.com or you can keep an eye on http://www.fenix-store.com as they posted the H30 a couple days ago and it still isn't on Zebralight's site. Fenix-store sold out of H30's really fast, but they have more on the way. Hope everyone who wants one gets ahold of one soon. They are a lot of fun!

    Update:

    Here are some pics where I'm using the H30 as a reading light. I held the magazine at the distance I would normally read at and the beam offered plenty of even coverage. I grabbed my wife's magazine.





    Last edited by WadeF; 04-07-2008 at 12:42 PM.
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  2. #2
    Flashaholic ydna's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    I've got mine, too. Very nice.
    I think it would be great if it can remember its last on mode. And I prefer it goes to the next stage when pressing the button.

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* WadeF's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    If it stepped up to the next level that would be okay too. If you were in medium and needed low you can just turn it off and on.

    With the clip attached it can also be attached to a sun visor and used as a map light, etc. I'll have to see what all I can do with this thing and take some pics. I want to try it on my hat's brim, etc.
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    *Flashaholic* gunga's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Great review Wade!

    I know the brackets were easily changed in the H50 (not sewn in) so can you do so with the H30?

    Is it easy to use the GID bracket on your head?

    I'm really looking forward to getting mine. Your review really adds to that!


  5. #5
    Flashaholic* WadeF's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    The rubber bracket/holder can come off the head band with the H30 the same way you can take the GITD one off the H50's head band, or add spares to it. My H50 came with a spare GITD holder, so you can have two on the head band, and then the 3rd is stuck on the lanyard. With the H30 you only have the black bracket on the headband, and a GITD bracket on the lanyard.

    Be cool if they sold the GITD brackets seperately if you wanted to add a couple to a headband to hold multiple lights. I've seen someone with like two Fenix's, and the Zebralight, all on one head band.
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  6. #6

    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Nice review wade

    Can you lockout the tailcap by unscrewing a bit ? It looks like the switch is easyly activated in pocket.

    P.s.: is it advertised as ipx waterproof??

  7. #7

    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Yes I agree a lockout tailcap seems like a must. I also wish they'd make a solid colored headband. I went on an out of state trip recently and left my H50 at home due to concern about getting hassled by the TSA because of its military looking headband.

    I'd be interested in a magazine beamshot like the one of the H50, or a description, basically light up a magazine page with the H30 and see how evenly lit the page is. This is something the H50 is just great at.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Quote Originally Posted by lumenlover2 View Post
    Nice review wade

    Can you lockout the tailcap by unscrewing a bit ? It looks like the switch is easyly activated in pocket.

    P.s.: is it advertised as ipx waterproof??
    Yes, it can lockout via unscrewing the tailcap.

    Yes, it's waterproof to IP68.
    ZEBRALIGHT.com

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Good to meet you at PF10 this past weekend Wade and, great review here!!! Very nice job!



    Karl

  10. #10
    karlthev's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Discount code on this??


    Karl

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    due to concern about getting hassled by the TSA because of its military looking headband.
    ???? What problem could TSA possibly have with the Zebralight headband?

  12. #12
    Flashaholic Sharpy_swe's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Sweet

    Thanks for a great review,!

    Now I really want a H30-Q5!
    I've got more flashlights than I need, but still wants more...and then a few more

  13. #13

    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Quote Originally Posted by ZebraLight View Post
    Yes, it can lockout via unscrewing the tailcap.

    Yes, it's waterproof to IP68.

    Thank`s that`s perfekt.

    P.s.: I love the tan colour of the headband , It blends in well in the outdoors while still not screaming military

  14. #14
    Flashaholic* Daniel_sk's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Quote Originally Posted by lumenlover2 View Post
    Thank`s that`s perfekt.

    P.s.: I love the tan colour of the headband , It blends in well in the outdoors while still not screaming military
    Exactly, I like the headband color.
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  15. #15
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Nice one ...

    I´ve read so far that rechargeable R123 (3.7V) work with the H30 ... it sounds like you can use still all three brightness levels ... ist that right?

    I ask because a Fenix L1D can use R123 with 3.7V too, but the small difference is that you are stuck to the turbo mode, because it has only a boost driver.

  16. #16
    Flashaholic* WadeF's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Yup, all three modes work fine for me with the R123 3.7V.

    I also like the head band color. It looks nice and is neutral so you can wear it with anything. If you care about that kind of thing.
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  17. #17
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Quote Originally Posted by rantanplan View Post
    Nice one ...

    I´ve read so far that rechargeable R123 (3.7V) work with the H30 ... it sounds like you can use still all three brightness levels ... ist that right?

    I ask because a Fenix L1D can use R123 with 3.7V too, but the small difference is that you are stuck to the turbo mode, because it has only a boost driver.
    The H30 has a buck-boost circuit, which means that it can also step down from a 3.7v source when needed. All three levels are functional with R123 type rechargeables.
    ZEBRALIGHT.com

  18. #18

    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Thanks for the excellent review Wade - appreciate the detailed comparison to the H50.

    And thanks Zebralight for the design modifications - the build-up around the emitter and push-button top both look particularly useful for running in headlamp mode. Glad to see it can handle RCR properly as well ...
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  19. #19

    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Super. THANKS for the review. i've been seriously wondering about the H30.

    A couple of questions:

    1. I actually think I prefer the twistie. If I pop the light in my backpack or pocket, I can see the light coming on easily. Does it have lock out or do I need to take the battery out?

    2. The beam looks awfully narrow compared to the H50. When you wear it as a headlamp, is the beam wide enough to cover the entire field of view like the H50 - or is it a narrower beam more like a traditional light? The H50's sense of having everying in the field of vision lighted is a nice luxury.

    Thanks,
    Mo
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  20. #20
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Nice review. I am way pumped about mine. April 11 can't get here soon enough.

  21. #21
    Flashaholic* WadeF's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Quote Originally Posted by moses View Post
    1. I actually think I prefer the twistie. If I pop the light in my backpack or pocket, I can see the light coming on easily. Does it have lock out or do I need to take the battery out?

    2. The beam looks awfully narrow compared to the H50. When you wear it as a headlamp, is the beam wide enough to cover the entire field of view like the H50 - or is it a narrower beam more like a traditional light? The H50's sense of having everying in the field of vision lighted is a nice luxury.
    1. As mentioned above the tailcap can be locked out to prevent accidental activiation.

    2. I've found the beam to be plenty wide. It's much wider than my other regular flashlights. I want to take some outdoor shots to better show the beam coverage of the H30 compared with the H50, and compare throw. Obviously the H30 will have more throw, and the H50 will have a wider beam.
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  22. #22
    karlthev's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Wade demonstrated these lights to several folks at PF10 this past weekend and they are very nice! I was most impressed!



    Karl

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Thanks for this review.

    From your arms length beamshots it looks like the H30 has a yellowish tint compared to the H50. Is this true?

  24. #24
    *Flashaholic* Illum's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    what? no reading pics?

    Good job on the review!
    I might actually buy a H30 after this
    My H50 is currently in transit from fenix in Atlanta

    is it me or is the LED bin of the H30 dramatically yellower than the H50?

  25. #25
    Flashaholic* WadeF's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    My H30 has a warmer tint than my H50, which is a plus in my book.
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  26. #26
    Flashaholic* WadeF's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Quote Originally Posted by Illum_the_nation View Post
    what? no reading pics?

    Good job on the review!
    I might actually buy a H30 after this
    My H50 is currently in transit from fenix in Atlanta

    is it me or is the LED bin of the H30 dramatically yellower than the H50?

    I'll take some reading pics, but from my perspective.

    Some of the shots are auto-white balance. The two shots where I'm straight on, 4 feet from the wall, are both locked in daylight WB. The H30 is warmer, but that could vary from H30 to H30. The difference though isn't that dramatic.
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  27. #27

    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Just ordered, can't wait.
    Sure would like to see a CR2 version of this light!
    Just say no to strobe and SOS...

  28. #28
    Flashaholic* Daniel_sk's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Quote Originally Posted by EVOeight View Post
    Just ordered, can't wait.
    Sure would like to see a CR2 version of this light!
    I don't see any sense in CR2 batteries, the whole headlamp would be just little smaller, the runtime would be less and the batteries cost at least as much as CR123A batteries.
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  29. #29
    Flashaholic Empyfree's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    Great review and great pics. Cheers Wade. You've just made me open my wallet again! I was going to wait for the fabled Fenix headlight, but as I've just filled out a questionnaire about it I don't think it will be any time soon!

    Anyhoo, I'll probably buy it when it comes out anyway, just to keep my fenix family happy!
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  30. #30
    *Flashaholic* Illum's Avatar
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    Default Re: Zebralight H30-Q5 Review (Picture Heavy)

    well, My H50 came in today
    I don't foresee the H30 to be a practical size [for me anyway, the H50 is small enough]

    my first LED headlamp

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