Got my MC-E pill yesterday, I've been running it off a set of IMR 16340's. I got an extension tube, but for I still prefer the balance of the DBS without it. That said, the DBS MC-E is truly awsome, this first time I've ever really understood the "wall of light" thing. See normally I find that light with beams that are fairly throwy are lacking at long ranges. I love the wide even beam of my L2D, just wish it lit up things at a distance a bit better. This is where the MC-E shines.
The beam of the MC-E is slightly narrower then that of the TK11 or the L2D, just like the spill on the R2 DBS, but it is bright! The hot spot is definitely brighter then that of my TK11, but instead of a dark ring surrounding the spot like with most Cree lights you get a nice bright, warm corona. This then transitions into a slightly less intense and slightly cooler spill. I'd also like to point out that the beam on my light is almost perfect. At certain distances, against a white wall, I can barely see a slight "X" in the spot but it's very slight and I almost never see it in real life.
Alright enough chat, time for pics. Those of you who've read my other reviews know the drill, you can also see my sig for a link to a previous thread with more pics. Between the C2H review and this one I've kept of picture setting the same. F2.6 and 2 seconds for the longer distance shots and F2.6 and 1/8th second for the closer range shots.
For these pics the distance is ~80ft. These shots are pretty faithfull to real life brightness. The only thing that isn't captured well is the sense of anti-tunnel-vision, for lack of a better word, that you get from the L2D. It really is a wide and smooth beam although it's outgunned in this company.
Next are some shots on a white wall about 20 ft away. These pics are under exposed and the lights seem much brighter in person, but they do illustrate general beam shape.
This next shot is against a white wall with the DBS MC-E close enough you can see the entire beam. The center spot is as close to pure white as I've seen, while the corona is nice and warm with just the slightest yellow tint. The combination is very nice. Then the out regions of the spill are more cool. Note that in real life the beam isn't as tinted as it appears here, that's a result of the shot being under exposed.
These last shots are of the grass about 5 feet in front of where I was standing. One shot is just the DBS MC-E and one has the TK11 as well. They kinda speak for themselves. These are also definitely underexposed, in real life the DBS MC-E looks much brighter.
In summary, this is THE most useful light I have! The R2 pill will out throw it, and thus be good for specific cases but for everything else the combination of decent throw (I'd guess roughly 13,000 - 15,000 lux just based on my eyes) and a bright spill with no dark rings is a winner. I only wish Alan could get this thing to run on 1 x 18650. I'm not a big fan of the extension tube for times when I'd be carrying it around, and I'd like more then the ~30 min run time I think I'll get with 16340's.