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Thread: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

  1. #1
    *Flashaholic* Patriot's Avatar
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    Default PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    I was intentionally careful not to title this thread "PH50 vs. Maxabeam" since that would be silly. These lights are obviously completely different beasts. My intention is just to show how very different the Polarion 50W HID and the 75W Short-arc Maxabeam are from each other. Sometimes HID's beams are loosely and innocently referred to as having "laser like" throw. Some HID's certainly have a narrow angle beam, especially the collimated portion but I personally find the difference between HID and Short-arc beams amazing. I just wanted to share with some of the new members what many of the seasoned CPFers already know. Also, the weather was very nice tonight and I just really wanted to get out and enjoy it.


    The lights...




    PH50, 183 yards to tree trunk (streak of light above the tree was an aircraft)


    Maxabeam, set to high, 183 yards to tree trunk (same exposure as picture above)


    PH50, 168 yards to the yellow trash bucket. (Note that this was underexposed so that the Maxabeam wouldn't be too over exposed with the same exposure below.


    Maxabeam, set to low, 168 yards to the yellow trash bucket. (same exposure as PH50 picture above)


    Maxabeam, set to high, (same exposure as the previous two pictures)




    I plan on posting additional, more interesting beamshots after another outing tomorrow evening. If all works out I'll have some 600 yard shots.
    Last edited by Patriot; 10-18-2008 at 07:02 PM.

  2. #2
    Flashaholic* Lips's Avatar
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Excellent shots Patriot



    Ah, beam shot times! I love taking the beamshots - funfun- and hate doing the computer work...



    Thanks for the work!




    .

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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by Patriot36 View Post
    I plan on posting additional, more interesting beamshots after another outing tomorrow evening. If all works out I'll have some 600 yard shots.
    Excellent! Looking forward to the 600 yd ones.
    Resistance is futile...

  4. #4
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    interesting comparison.

    Would have loved to see a costco or Ti-Mega, as I'm familiar with those. It would give me a sense of the maxabeam.



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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Hey, who are you? There was another guy around here recently, but at least he had 500mw. LOL
    Resistance is futile...

  6. #6
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    LOL

    I'm the cooler Flash.



  7. #7
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by Flashanator View Post
    interesting comparison.

    Would have loved to see a costco or Ti-Mega, as I'm familiar with those. It would give me a sense of the maxabeam.

    I'll keep that in mind for tomorrow night Flashanator.

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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    cool, thanks



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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Nice pics Patriot

    Finally I get to see the difference in size of the Maxabeam and PH50. Maxabeam seems to be not to big. At first I thought it was a huge, monsterlike thing...

    Is there different models of the Maxabeam? I can´t say that I have looked to much at Maxabeam since I have been very pleased with my Polarion.

    Pleased may not be the right word Over-excited it has to be

    I´m looking forward to those 600yard photos

  10. #10
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    the PH50 must be amazing, its stylish small size.



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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by Lips View Post
    Excellent shots Patriot


    Ah, beam shot times! I love taking the beamshots - funfun- and hate doing the computer work...


    ....and you take some of the best around Lips. Your gif images are always great too. You and Lux Luthor demonstrated the value of gifs to me. I guess now that means I better post one...lol.



    You're welcome Team Member. All of the Maxabeams are the same size but they do sell differently spec'd lights.

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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Great thread and great pics!! This is an excellent representation of what the beams actually look like. What camera are you using?


    Karl
    Last edited by karlthev; 10-18-2008 at 04:00 AM.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Both of these are truly grail lights


    So how many seconds longer does the Maxa need before reaching full brightness?
    Lights were once incandescent. And halogen bulb were great

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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    The Maxa Beam "starts" instantly at high power which lasts 3 seconds (according to Peak Beam) and then drops back in output to a factory set medium or whatever you may wish to program it. I really haven't timed mine but it is a very short period at the highest level. The Polarion takes 5-10 seconds or so to reach full power--at least that's been my experience. My other HIDs are slower in reaching full output.


    Karl

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    *Flashaholic* LuxLuthor's Avatar
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Great pix!

    Karl, you can program it so right toggle will turn on high for 16 seconds.
    While light on, hold red power switch down, then rock beam switch to right and release, then release power switch. Light will go out with setting saved.

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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Damn I always get a bit weak in the knees whenever I see a polarion light...

    looking forward to more shots.

  17. #17
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by karlthev View Post
    Great thread and great pics!! This is an excellent representation of what the beams actually look like. What camera are you using?


    Karl


    Just the same cheapy Canon Power Shot S2 IS. 5MP. I no longer have the Canon SLR. I sold it a while back with plans of purchasing a Nikon D300. With things being a little shaky economy wise, I decided to hold off on that for the time being.

  18. #18

    Smile Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Wow Patriot this is an awesome comparison! I have always been amazed by the Maxabeam. I like how the third picture captures the Maxabeam's beam in the air.

    The Polarion appears to have almost the same beam pattern as the N30, but it looks nearly twice as bright. It must look amazing to shine the PH50 through a large field like that.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Here is a gif image of the two:



    It appears that I bumped the camera tripod since the two don't perfectly match...one of my gif pet peeves...lol. I guess it's close enough to get the idea and exposures were the same in each. I'm amazed by the corona from the PH-50 and how it's even illuminating the powerline polls and lines at the upper right. Although I didn't range the pole specifically, it's about 240 yards away. I should also mention that the moon was pretty bright last night too.
    Last edited by Patriot; 10-18-2008 at 01:57 PM.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Awesome thread !! I would love to own both those lights. The next time you take some pics with those 2 lights would it be possible to set the focus of the Maxabeam to the same angle as the Polarion ? I'm very curious to see the difference between them on equal ground, so to speak. Thanks
    I NEVER FEAR FAILURE

  21. #21
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by Morepower! View Post
    Awesome thread !! I would love to own both those lights. The next time you take some pics with those 2 lights would it be possible to set the focus of the Maxabeam to the same angle as the Polarion ? I'm very curious to see the difference between them on equal ground, so to speak. Thanks

    I'll try to get that for you if the location suits that type of shot. Where I was last night would be best for that but I'll see what I can do for you. Fair warning though....the Maxabeam will appear kind of weak.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    yea id love to see the wide degree flood compared to PH50,

    hope to see your costco compared to maxabeam on standard & high mode.



  23. #23
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Great pics Patriot36. Thanks for taking the time to share them with us.

    Also looking forward to the longer captures.

    That PH50 puts some serious hurt downrange, damn!

  24. #24
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Thanks everyone. I'm finished with tonight's pictures and I'm processing them now. In the mean time I'll add another K3500 picture from last night.


    Same PH-50 picture as before:


    K3500 on hot off the charger. (I mention this because I now believe that the light doesn't have completely flat regulation)

  25. #25
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    NIGHT TWO

    Sorry about the fact that I don't have 600+ yard pics for you tonight. To make a long story short I was heading out about 20 miles from my house to a wilderness preserve when about 3/4 of the way there it occurred to me that I didn't remember packing my camera. I almost called it quits for the evening but didn't want to let you guys down. I came back home, grabbed the camera and headed to the park instead.

    These shots are a little further than last night. The range is 291 yards. The Target is a concrete drainage wall about 4' high and 6' wide. The lights are positioned to the left of the camera on a 5' high tripod. The drainage dike that I'm standing on is about 10' high so the total light height above the flat field is close to 15'. The camera is to the right of the light tripod about 5' and is mounted on a second tripod about 3.5' high. Settings are 4" F5.0 ISO100 WB set to daylight.

    Since I was asked to bring an extra light or two, I decided to take a couple others along too. The lights include, PH-50, Maxabeam, Costco HID, K3500R, & M6/1185.


    I'm going to post these photos in two sets. The first set will be wide angle or about 35mm equivalent. The second set will be zoomed or about 150mm equivalent or about 2.5 x magnification.



    Wide Shots


    Surefire M6/1185 mod (mod is discussed here http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb/...d.php?t=204157)


    Microfire K3500 (hot off the charger) (light set to maximum wide)


    Costco HID


    Polarion PH-50


    Maxabeam (on high) (set full wide)


    Maxabeam (on high) (set to full narrow)
    Last edited by Patriot; 10-19-2008 at 11:10 AM.

  26. #26
    Flashaholic Morepower!'s Avatar
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Excellent !! Thanks so much for the wide shot of the Maxabeam. I just wanted to get a better idea of how the Maxabeam works. It's almost unbeleivable as to how focused they are and how much light they can put on a long range target. That's pretty much what I'd expected from it set on wide, maybe even a fraction less.
    I NEVER FEAR FAILURE

  27. #27
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Set 2 Zoomed shots


    K3500R


    PH-50


    Costco


    Maxabeam (on low)


    Maxabeam (on high)




    Some shooting notes and observations:

    Yes, all the pictures are crooked and I didn't notice it until I got home. The tiny image in the view finder and lack of easily identifiable horizon didn't allow me to notice that I had canted the camera. It's something that I know to look for but completely forgot about it...

    You'll notice that the M6/1185 is not included in the second set of pics and either is the Maxabeam wide shot. The performance was so poor with this focal setting that it seemed pointless to take the pictures. It was a case of no corona and almost nothing on the target either. The fewer pics I take while out there the easier it is to keep track of and then later process at home. It's enough work just to take the pics that I did...and post them during the same evening.

    Although sometimes it doesn't look like it, I was careful to aim the hotspot of each beam at the little drainage hole on the concrete slab. I even stepped away from the camera and walked to the size 20 feet to double check if I wasn't sure. The fluid head on my tripod makes it a cinch to make very tiny adjustments. If you look at the zoomed shot of the Costco it will appear that it's aimed slightly to the right but it's an illusion created by more reflective or broader objects near the hot spot. Other lights like the K3500 or PH-50 will appear to be aimed low but this is also an illusion created by more light falling on the foreground. In each case the center of the beam was on the center of the concrete slab.

    One thing that I've learned is that that I can't get a truly accurate beamshot representation of the Maxabeam when the camera is left in the same settings that I used to take the other pictures. What happens is that the beam flares or blooms. To the naked eye this isn't the case. It appears much sharper and more like a shaft of light without lighting up objects to the side. During my next outing I'll set the exposure to capture the Maxabeam's beam as it looks to the eye and then I'll take pictures of the other lights while set to that exposure. It should be interesting although the HID's will probably appear much dimmer.

    My little camera really isn't capable of capturing these beam colors quite accurately. The tendency seems to be that the white beam of the Polarion seems to look yellow, the 1185 mod looks orange, while the Maxabeam, Costo and K3500 appear white. This is not the case in real life and the camera is making everything about 500-1000K warmer than it really is. The two white balance settings that come closest to reproducing what the eye sees are still off. The Polarion really seems to produce the best color and almost appears like sunlight....maybe just a bit warmer. The next best light was the M6/1185. The next best was the Costco followed by the Maxabeam and K3500R. In the future I might add a white balance experiment to this thread in order to help others who might be interested in doing their own HID beamshots.


    One last observation. In the zoomed PH-50 picture notice the power pole slightly above and to the right. Now compare it to all the other light shots. That pole is 407 yards away and being illuminated by the PH-50 corona. Also, have a look at the yellow 55 gallon trash bucket about 50 yards to the left of the concrete slab. It's reflecting a fair amount of light that the K3500R and Costco don't appear to be touching.
    Last edited by Patriot; 10-20-2008 at 10:20 AM.

  28. #28
    Flashaholic Morepower!'s Avatar
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by Patriot36 View Post
    In the future I might add a white balance experiment to this thread in order to help others who might be interested in doing their own HID beamshots.
    Yes please !! I need all the help I can get.
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  29. #29
    *Flashaholic* LuxLuthor's Avatar
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    I would love to see the collimating lens with various MB wide angles like that....otherwise it is nearly useless except on nearly tightest focus.

    The PH-50 is very impressive the more shots I see of it.

  30. #30
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    Default Re: PH50 & Maxabeam comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by LuxLuthor View Post
    I would love to see the collimating lens with various MB wide angles like that....otherwise it is nearly useless except on nearly tightest focus.

    That's pretty much how I feel about the the usefulness of wide beam.

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