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Thread: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more!

  1. #1

    Wink2 Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more!

    Warning: Pic heavy, as usual.



    Lumintop has recently launched a series of colored aluminum Worm lights, their 1xAAA offering (previously available only in polished stainless steel).

    Specifications:
    • Emitter: CREE XP-E R2
    • Max Output / Runtime: 60 lumens / 1 hour
    • Low Output / Runtime: 10 lumens / 4 hours
    • Dimension: 72mm * 14mm
    • Light Mode: Low - High
    • Battery Type: 1 x AAA
    • Shipping Weight: 0.4lbs
    • MSRP: unknown for the aluminum versions, but stainless steel version retails ~$29







    Packaging is very reminiscent of my 4GREER WS1 1xAAA light. Inside the plastic clamshell with magnetic closing clasp is the light, extra o-ring, and small split ring. The stainless steel version also comes with a keychain clip. Manual is printed on the back of the cardboard sleeve.


    From left to right: Duracell 1xAAA NiMH, Lumintop Worm SS, Al Black, Al Red, 4Sevens Preon1, ITP A3 EOS Upgraded (XP-G), Titanium Innovations IlluminaTi, Maratac 1xAAA, Klarus Mi X6.

    All weights without battery

    Worm Aluminum: Weight: 14.3g, Length 72.0mm (battery installed, off), Width 14.1mm (bezel)
    Worm Stainless: Weight: 27.3g, Length 72.0mm (battery installed, off), Width 14.1mm (bezel)
    Klarus Mi X6: Weight 16.2g, Length 72.9mm (battery installed), Width 12.8mm
    4Sevens Preon 1: Weight 15.3g (with keychain clip), Length 75.6mm, Width 14.0mm (bezel)
    4Sevens ReVo:: Weight: 11.3g , Length 72.7mm (battery installed), Width 12.9mm
    ITP EOS A3 Upgraded: Weight: 11.6g (no clip), Length: 69.7, Width 14.1mm (bezel)

    The Worm is quite reasonable in size for the class.





    The stainless steel body has a polished look, and is heavier than the aluminum. The aluminum versions come in the standard keychain colors (i.e. black, gold, blue, purple, red).

    Lettering is subtle on all lights, sharp and clear on the colored aluminum. While there is no knurling to speak of, the concentric ridges on the body help with grip. I found the light can be operated one-handed, but extra grip on the head would help.

    Tailstanding is possible on both models. The stainless steel version has a more open tailcap appearance.

    The Worm uses a spring in the tailcap, like many lights in this class.

    The stainless steel version features a GITD o-ring in the head, between the lens and bezel.

    Video Overview

    NEW: Normally at this point in the review, I like to show the emitter/reflector and beamshots. But I’m trying something new - video reviews showing both the basic build and user interface. Check it out below. Beamshots will follow after the user interface and circuit discussion.



    Video was recorded in 480p, but YouTube defaults to 360p. Once the video is running, you can click on the 360p icon in the lower right-hand corner, and select the higher 480p option.

    User Interface

    Turn on by fully tightening the head/bezel against the body. The light is off when the bezel is loosened slightly.

    Light comes on in Lo output to start. To select Hi, twist the head off and then back on again within 1 second. This will advance to the next level in the following repeating sequence: Lo > Hi > Lo, etc..

    There is no memory mode.

    No PWM/Strobe

    Here’s a nice find – there is no sign of PWM on the Lo mode of the Worm. It thus seems to use current-control for its low mode.

    There is no strobe feature.

    Beamshots:

    And now the part you’ve all been waiting for.




    The Worm comes with a lightly textured reflector (OP) and uses a XP-E emitter. Centering of the emitters wasn’t already perfect, but acceptable on all my samples.

    EDIT: As you can probably tell above, it looks like the stainless steel version has an XP-G emitter, not XP-E. Not sure if that's standard now or not (the packaging says XP-E R2 on all lights). Probably won't make much of a difference for output or runtimes, though.

    Which brings me to the white-wall beamshots. All lights are on 1xAAA Sanyo Eneloop NiMH, about ~0.75 meter from a white wall (with the camera ~1.25 meters back from the wall). Automatic white balance on the camera, to minimize tint differences. All beamshots taken immediately upon activation.










    I find most 1xAAA lights to have fairly diffused beams, with broad hotspots. The XP-E-based Worm has a slightly more defined hotspot than the XP-G-based lights

    Testing Method:

    All my output numbers are relative for my home-made light box setup, a la Quickbeam's flashlightreviews.com method. You can directly compare all my relative output values from different reviews - i.e. an output value of "10" in one graph is the same as "10" in another. All runtimes are done under a cooling fan, except for any extended run Lo/Min modes (i.e. >12 hours) which are done without cooling.

    I have recently devised a method for converting my lightbox relative output values (ROV) to estimated Lumens. See my How to convert Selfbuilt's Lighbox values to Lumens thread for more info.

    Throw/Output Summary Chart:

    Effective November 2010, I have revised my summary tables to match with the current ANSI FL-1 standard for flashlight testing. Please see http://www.sliderule.ca/FL1.htm for a description of the terms used in these tables.



    Output is fairly high for a XP-E R2 light, closer to many of my XP-G R5 lights (although again, the stainless steel version seems to be using an XP-G - the aluminum ones all have XP-Es). Throw is reasonable for the class.

    Note that Lo on the Worm is comparable to many three-level light’s Med mode.

    Output/Runtime Comparison:










    The two-level Worm shows excellent regulation and runtime at both levels.

    There is no difference in performance between the stainless steel and aluminum versions – both seem to use the same circuit.

    Potential Issues

    Light is two-mode only, with Lo/Hi closer to most light’s Med/Hi (i.e., Worm lacks a typical Lo mode).

    Head lacks any knurling or other grip items, so the light may be difficult to activate/switch single-handed.

    Light lacks a pocket clip.

    Preliminary Observations

    I am so used to seeing three-mode 1xAAA lights, that any discussion typically begins with the merits/issues of the specific mode sequence. Thankfully, that is not required here – the Worm comes on in Lo first, followed by Hi if you loosen/tighten switch. Very simple and straight-forward.

    Build and beam pattern are good, no significant issues. I would like to see some extra grip elements on the head to help with single-handed use. The ridges on the body do help with overall grip.

    Current-controlled circuit performance is excellent – very flat regulation, and top-of-class runtimes at both levels.

    There are a few minor differences in construction between the stainless steel and newer aluminum versions (i.e. slightly simplified construction on the aluminum). But either one works well, and I like that tailstanding has been maintained. You also get your typical choice of colors in the anodized version.

    I’m not generally a fan of stainless steel lights (i.e. too heavy), but the material works well in the 1xAAA size. The extra weight is negligible, and adds a feeling of increased sturdiness. I personally like the polished look in this case, but bead-blasted might resist showing scratches better.

    All said and done, if you don't mind the two-level design with no typical Lo mode, this series of lights makes for another good everyday carry option for a keychain.

    ----

    Lumintop Worm samples provided by Lumintop for review.
    Last edited by selfbuilt; 09-15-2011 at 08:44 AM.
    Full list of all my reviews: flashlightreviews.ca. Outdoor 100-yard Beamshots 2011. Latest: Olight M18 Striker.
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  2. #2
    Flashaholic* shao.fu.tzer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    Nice review Selfbuilt... I was thinking of picking one of these up for my honey... I wish it were a one mode so I could QTC it...

  3. #3

    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    The YouTube video is private?

  4. #4

    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    Quote Originally Posted by geckoblink View Post
    The YouTube video is private?
    Sorry, fixed.
    Full list of all my reviews: flashlightreviews.ca. Outdoor 100-yard Beamshots 2011. Latest: Olight M18 Striker.
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    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    Thanks for your very nice review and effort!
    The light looks good and has good runtime with eneloop.

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    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    this Worm has really peaked my interest...

    Can i ask how the thread tolerances are? is there alot of thread play? how much do you have to loosen the bezel, before it doesnt activate if you press downward on the bezel?

    thanks for yet another great review!

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by skyfire View Post
    Can i ask how the thread tolerances are? is there alot of thread play? how much do you have to loosen the bezel, before it doesnt activate if you press downward on the bezel?!
    All these 1xAAA lights have some play. The worm is certainly no worse than typical in how much you need to loosen the bezel. I would say it is above average in thread play for the lights I have tested. There is some play, but not excessive.
    Full list of all my reviews: flashlightreviews.ca. Outdoor 100-yard Beamshots 2011. Latest: Olight M18 Striker.
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    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    The stainless one looks like it has an XP-G instead of an XP-E... which did you use for the output and runtime tests?

  9. #9

    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    You have a good eye - yes, it does indeed seem like the stainless steel version uses a XP-G.

    The packaging clearly says XP-E R2 on all of them, and the aluminum versions all look the same. For the runtimes, I have identified the stainless steel "SS" and aluminum light "Al" (the black sample). As you can see, there is virtually no difference in output or runtime.

    For beamshots and output table measures, I only used the aluminum version. Since overall output is the same, I suspect the XP-G SS version may have a slightly broader hotspot with less throw. I will double-check next time I do output measures, and report back.
    Full list of all my reviews: flashlightreviews.ca. Outdoor 100-yard Beamshots 2011. Latest: Olight M18 Striker.
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  10. #10

    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    Quote Originally Posted by selfbuilt View Post
    Head lacks any knurling or other grip items, so the light may be difficult to activate/switch single-handed.
    i got an aluminum one of these recently and can confirm that one-handed operation is difficult. the surface of the head is slippery smooth and hard to grip.

    plus the threads have a lot of slop. about the same as an iTP A3. the head requires almost a half turn to lock out.

    other than that, i'm pretty happy with the light.

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    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    thanks for the great review. is it really true that the Lumintop goes on for ~7hours in its Low mode for all tested battery types (Alkaline, Eneloops)? (you never test Energizer on Medium/Low mode, how come? ;-)

    the official specs say "4 hours".
    (most shops sell the SS version with R5 emitter these days)

  12. #12

    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    Quote Originally Posted by kreisler View Post
    thanks for the great review. is it really true that the Lumintop goes on for ~7hours in its Low mode for all tested battery types (Alkaline, Eneloops)? (you never test Energizer on Medium/Low mode, how come? ;-)
    Because L92 lithiums are expensive. I don't typically test lo/med modes on L92 lithiums, for this reason.

    But based on the performance of the other cells, I have no reason to expect they would do any worse. The Worm runtime is impressive.

    Oh, and despite what my runtime graph labels say, my SS version is also a XP-G R5. Performance doesn't seem any different from the XP-E R2 versions, though.
    Full list of all my reviews: flashlightreviews.ca. Outdoor 100-yard Beamshots 2011. Latest: Olight M18 Striker.
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    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    sorry double post
    Last edited by kreisler; 11-09-2011 at 12:29 PM.

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    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    last night i ordered a Worm SS Cree R5 only thanks to your measurement graphs. The graphs of the Worm are beautiful.. much more convincing than the PWM-controlled light by iTP A3..

    I think compared to the Klarus Mix6 (Titan/..) the Worm light is actually fully useful due to the larger diameter reflector (14.1mm bezel vs. 12.8mm bezel). brighter and throws further than the Klarus, with the same amount of spill. Lifetime guarantee (nice service, in theory!). Physically, the pics with your hand, there doesnt seem to be a substantial difference:


    So, if size (volume, diameter) and weight are absolutely acceptable (i will have to see...!), than i wont regret having chosen the Worm over the Klarus, iTP A3, Olight i3, Revo and others (IlluminaTi, Maratac, ..). And for sure i wont buy another AAA torch for myself then.

    The only REAL disadvantage of the Worm is: it doesnt have an ultra low mode, i.e. something between 0.5-4.0 lumens like all the others. once i have the worm i can determine how important the ultra low mode to me is. if i feel that i am missing something really important or useful, i might return it for a full refund and simply give up on the AAA-idea. i mean.. for what purpose did i order the EDC by Xeon, the acclaimed E03?? (has yet to arrive.)


    haha

    There is a clone (Okay, who cloned whom?) by UltraFire. it's half the Lumintop price, a little longer, double as heavy, has 5 modes, is much much brighter and it eats 10440 batteries. Users of the UltraFire like the classy look and the built quality but do criticize the net weight of 42grams. (The Lumintop net weight is 27.3grams; with eneloop AAA, the total is 39.4grams.)
    Last edited by kreisler; 11-11-2011 at 01:25 AM.

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    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    Here some additional info:

    Quote Originally Posted by roadkill1109 View Post
    they only say no 10440 because it heats up too fast, so for those who dont give a sh*t about how hot their lights get, their worm will burnout on them. (or lesser lifespan)
    i am posting the following info in selfbuilt's review too. this is what Mike at Lumintop replied to me:
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike
    Many thanks for your email. Lumintop Worm can not run with 10400
    battery. The working voltage range is 0.9V-2.2V. the currents is about
    250mA. If you use 10400 battery, the worm will burn out.
    (...)
    Yes, you are right, it would burn the driver not the LED. You are a
    professional user. :-)
    hope this helps

  16. #16

    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    After receiving my Preon with its smooth head I found it almost impossible to use one-handed. Although a narrow band of skateboard tape fixed that I decided to never again order an AAA/AA light that was so ergonomically deficient, even if it was a superior light.

    When function is prisoner to design the results are almost always negative. The question is why a fine company like Lumintop or 4Sevens would permit this to happen.

    Brightnorm

  17. #17

    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    thanks for the many great reviews selfbuilt!
    i am seriously considering getting one of the worms. such great runtimes and regulation.
    i want one or two!!

  18. #18
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    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    What would be the difference between XP-E R2 and XP-G for the lumintop?

  19. #19

    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    Quote Originally Posted by SuLyMaN View Post
    What would be the difference between XP-E R2 and XP-G for the lumintop?
    Basically, my results show there isn't much of a difference between these emitters in this light. The XP-G version has a slightly more broad hotspot, but performance is otherwise comparable (i.e. output and runtime don't seem to be very different).
    Full list of all my reviews: flashlightreviews.ca. Outdoor 100-yard Beamshots 2011. Latest: Olight M18 Striker.
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    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    Someone asked to see the worm's driverboard in another thread, posting it here so we can keep all the worm info in one thread. sandwitch is "potted" with a thick layer of epoxy. (the led is not original, a neutral xp-g from cutter) waiting for a hi cri xp-g


    Last edited by jorn; 03-04-2012 at 05:08 AM.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    Fantastic picture, never seen such a thing before, thanks so much!!
    And also the quality of the photo is great (big picture, sharp shot).

    i dont see anything wrong with the original XP-G R5 LED (the stainless worm). it is bright and tint is good too
    Ah you prefer High CRI.

    okay that's a totally different story
    on led star + is red cable, - is white cable
    Last edited by shelm; 03-31-2012 at 01:20 PM.

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    The original led was a white tinted xp-e, nothing wrong with the led. I always swap a led or something if i get bored. Modding lights is more fun than using them The few stock lights i have left , is mostly rare, or really expensive ones. Might end up testing the new XB-D led for fun (to see if it can throw) when they got the diferent tints out on the marked.

  23. #23
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    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    I can't find anyplace but ebay and a CPF German dealer to find the aluminum version. Do we have a USA based CPF dealer stocking these? PM me if you know of one.
    Light is the activity of what is transparent - Aristotle

  24. #24

    Default Re: Lumintop Worm (1xAAA, XP-E R2) SS & Aluminum Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS and more

    Quote Originally Posted by jorn View Post
    Someone asked to see the worm's driverboard in another thread, posting it here so we can keep all the worm info in one thread. sandwitch is "potted" with a thick layer of epoxy. (the led is not original, a neutral xp-g from cutter) waiting for a hi cri xp-g


    Thanks for sharing these photos. I could post my own lol! Here my story:

    i finally got my Worm SS too, great light! what happened:

    argh, i didnt know that the driver disc was supposed to screw out/turn the aluminum pill by the help of the 2 aluminum grooves. with my new tweezers i tried to turn the driver disc (without heating) and then the driver disc slid out off its hold at the edges (the 2 grooves!) of the aluminum pill.

    i didnt know what i was doing so i continued to "screw off" the PCB (because i couldnt get it back in place (because i didnt know what the PCB, driver disc and aluminum were all about)) and i noticed that the PCB didnt want to come off because of the 2 wires. yet i continued (because i didnt know what i was doing) to screw off the driver disc and eventually the PCB came off! consequence: 2 torn wires and a stuck aluminum pill, yikes!

    Next problem was to screw out the aluminum pill itself. Its threads were glued (as i knew), and i didnt want to heat up anything. So i stuck my fine tweezer tips thru the 2 deck wire holes of the aluminum pill and slowly applied some force (torque). No problem, the "silicone grease"-like glue let the threads go -- was really easy to screw off the aluminum pill. Finally!

    Now i am realizing how tiny everything is, very fine (and no, my PCB sandwich is *not* potted or epoxied!). So how i do i fix the broken wires? I am guessing i need to get fine wires (silicone insulation), solder off the 4(four!) torn wire parts, then first solder the 2 wires onto the PCB, then insert the PCB sandwich into the aluminum pill (with the wires thru the 2 holes), apply some thermal paste on the aluminum deck, put the LED star (XP-g R5) back in place, cut the wires, and finally solder them back onto the LED star. Is the order of steps correct? How difficult is this procedure? ( i mean... these wires and solder points are super tiny!! )

    ( i am thinking: if Lumintop hadnt glued the pill threads, i wouldnt have torn the wires. it's all their fault!! )

    btw, my PCB sandwich looks a little different than yours (PCB design).
    Last edited by shelm; 03-31-2012 at 02:15 PM.

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