Clulite make a wide range of lamps and gun lights. The Interceptor has the longest reach of the LED based gun lights made by Clulite, having a claimed 300m range.
Before getting to know the Interceptor, I would have said that with its extreme long range capability, the Interceptor is mainly aimed at the full-bore firearms market (and possibly long range small-bore), but now that I’ve been using it for several weeks, I have found it just as at home on an air rifle as on a firearm.
The Interceptor provides a full kit, only requiring the user to have a rifle with suitable scope ready to mount it onto.
Also on test is the Clulite LSK mounting kit which allows you to vehicle mount the light.
Online prices for the Interceptor seem to range between £180 and £195.60 delivered, and for the LSK mounting kit £55-£66.
LED lights are now the most common type of light on the market and there is a lot of competition, so let’s see what the Interceptor, Clulite’s top of the range dedicated LED gun/search-light, can do.
(NOTE: This review was originally written specifically for a British Hunting Forum rather than for CPF. As a dedicated night time hunting lamp I've decided to post it in the CPF specialist application lighting forum)
On receiving the Interceptor, the first item I picked up was the light around which this kit is built. The Interceptor light is the largest of the Clulite LED lights and has a large reflector. Its design is based on the older style scope-mounted lamps, which used to have a bulb/holder/reflector unit mounted on the scope, and then needed a battery pack the shooter had to carry separately. With the Interceptor, the rechargeable battery is built into the lamp unit making a very neat solution.
It is a medium sized light, smaller than the still popular incandescent bulb lights, but larger than most other ‘tactical’ style gun lights.
The kit looks comprehensive and well presented with all the components held in the foam insert in individual shaped holes.
The light is solidly built, with mainly plastic construction helping reduce weight and make it very resilient. Being scope mounted, it should not affect the balance of the gun too much; we’ll find the answer out in the field….
What is in the box:
The well-presented sturdy box.
The sides have more information
With more views of the Interceptor
Opening the box lid reveals the Interceptor, scope mount, handle, charging unit, mains charger adaptor, car charger adaptor, remote switch, stick on Velcro, glass filters (red, amber, yellow) and instructions all neatly held in a foam liner with precisely cut holes.
The complete kit out of the box.
The Interceptor with the handle fitted to make this a general purpose light
The rear of the Interceptor with on/off switch on the right, charging port top centre, remote switch socket bottom centre, mode selection switch on the left, and the strobe prevention cam below this (more on that later)
Looking deep into the reflector, at the Cree XR-E Q5 LED
Moving onto the LSK Mounting kit. This is a kit designed to allow you to mount the lamp onto any smooth surface, such as a car windscreen or body panel.
Again the LSK is supplied in a well presented box
On the bottom of the box are the details
The LSK components are loose in the box
Out of the box are the suction cup, solid bar, allen key, extended handle for the Lazer/Blazer/Clubman and Mini Lazer models and a bracket to hold this extended handle.
All the components assembled
Modes and User Interface:
The Interceptor has a latching on/off switch built into the light, and a remote switch which can be used if you prefer, both of which provide a different user interface.
The built in switch is the ‘reverse-clicky’ type. This means that from OFF, you press the switch until it clicks, and as you let go, the torch turns ON. If you then half press the switch (but not enough to make it click) you can monetarily switch it OFF and as you let go again it comes back on again. If you wanted to you could use this for signalling.
The remote switch is one of the most useful and interesting features of this kit. Within the pressure pad there are two distinct zones which switch in different ways.
Near the middle of the pad is another ‘reverse-clicky’ switch which latches on, so from the pressure switch you can turn the torch on permanently just like the standard switch.
At the far end of the pad is a momentary switch which only keeps the light on while you press it. As soon as you let go the light goes off.
The Interceptor has three modes. These are selected using the rotary switch on the back of the lamp unit. In the 10 o’clock position the lamp is in high, in the 9 o’clock it is in low, and if you rotate the plastic ‘strobe-blocking-cam’ out of the way, the switch is able to rotate to 8 o’clock and activates strobe.
The mode selection can be done while the lamp is on or off.
Batteries and output:
There is no removable/replaceable battery pack to worry about as the Interceptor has its Ni-Mh battery pack integrated into the lamp unit.
With three hours of maximum output runtime, this should provide plenty of light for an evening’s shooting.
The Interceptor is supplied with a charger unit which can be powered by either a mains, or car adaptor. Once powered up, this is then plugged into the Interceptor charging socket.
The charging unit has a red light to indicate it is powered on and a blue light which flashes rapidly when charging and goes off once fully charged.
The Interceptor kit torch does not have any stated output specifications apart from saying the beam has an approximate range of 300m on High.
Using a calibrated integrating sphere I measured the output in approximate ANSI lumens.
High measured 215 lumens and low at 18 lumens. Low is achieved using PWM, and the manufacturers specified drive current is 1000mA for high and 120mA for low.
Although the maximum output is not that high by the latest LED standards, what the interceptor does have is great beam intensity to help it throw. The large deep reflector achieves a peak beam intensity of 33,000 lux.
According to ANSI specifications this actually equates to a beam range of 363m, so the 300m specified by Clulite is well within this theoretical maximum.
The Interceptor has a beam designed to throw a tight spot of light with not much light in the spill area around the hotspot. This allows the beam to reach a long way without the spill light blinding you.
In The Lab
In an attempt to quantify the actual beam profile I developed the following test. There are probably many flaws in my method, but it is simple and easy to carry out and seems to provide a good enough comparison.
The method used was to put the light on the edge of a table 1m from a wall, with a tape measure on the wall. The zero of the scale is placed in the centre of the hotspot and a lux meter is then positioned at points along the scale, with the measurements recorded. Beam shots are often taken with the light shining on a flat white wall, so this method is simply measuring the actual intensity across the beam on a flat surface, not the spherical light emission.
The results are then plotted on a graph.
For the best throw you want to see a sharp peak with less of the distracting spill. For the best flood light the trace should be pretty flat.
Here I have compared the Interceptor to two reference lights, the Ultrafire WF-800 Recoil thrower and a P60 Cree R2 as well as Clultie’s MG125. The WF-800 recoil thrower is one of the most impressive throwers, throwing far further than many more expensive lights with far higher output. The Interceptor has a very tightly focussed beam with very high peak output making it an impressive thrower that significantly out-throws the WF-800.
Taking this a little further, I calculated an approximate factor to apply to the lux measurements, as each measurement gets further from the centre of the beam, it corresponds to a larger area onto which the light is falling. It seems to me that this should also be taken into consideration, so I applied these area corrections and came up with this odd looking graph.
The key quantity here is the area under the graph line. This should correspond to the total light output.
The graph can be a little difficult to read, but is showing the distribution of light energy across the beam. Here the Interceptor shows it central peak of light energy plus a reasonable amount of light in the spill; enough to be usable, but not enough to obscure the impressive throw.
Using the Interceptor
To fit the Clulite adjustable scope mount, you may need to slightly shift your scope in its mounts. For the scope pictured here I had to move the scope forward slightly to make room for the mount.
The mount will fit onto a 30mm scope tube, or using the spacer ring provided, onto a 25mm tube.
Due to the height of the mount, even with flip up scope covers, the beam is not obscured
Here you can see the main mount clamp screw and the two wing nuts that hold the ball and socket adjustable post onto which the Interceptor fits. The Interceptor has another wing nut to hold it firmly on the post.
The remote switch has a straight (rather than coiled) cable which needs to be wound around the mount a few times to use up the excess length. I found that a bit of blu-tak worked well for holding the remote switch in place without sticking the supplied Velcro to the stock.
The remote switch plugs into the rear of the Interceptor.
Looking through the scope
Adjusting the Interceptor beam alignment is straight forward. I did this by resting the gun on a support, checking what is in the cross hairs and then adjusting the beam to fall in the same spot. The wing nuts tightened and the beam is set. At ranges over 30m, the beam did not need further adjustments.
My initial concern was that the highly focussed beam would be too small for the closer ranges of an air rifle. As you can see here, although there is a noticeable hotspot when using a 4x scope, it is actually surprisingly usable.
Moving up to a higher power scope at its lowest power 8x, on a driving range with yardage markers clearly visible out to and beyond the 250yards mark.
Ramping up to higher magnification reduces the brightness of the image. With the zoom wound up to 32x the image is still usable.
The Interceptor is supplied with three glass filters
The reason the whole of the red filter is not shown is due to the little mishap I had when I dropped it onto a hard floor when trying to set up the photo! NOTE: I broke the filter this was no fault of the design. In fact Clulite arranged a replacement which arrived a couple of days later.
Fitting the filters is easy. The rubber bezel slides off the front of the Interceptor.
After dropping the appropriate filter into the rubber, it is pushed back onto the front
The red filtered light seen through the 4x scope.
As mentioned earlier, you need some exposed scope tube to fit the Clulite mount. On this rifle, a compact scope is fitted. This does not have enough scope tube exposed.
The rifle has a .177/.22 SAK sound moderator fitted, and the Clulite mount just fits over this allowing the Interceptor to be mounted in an under-slung position
In this position the weight becomes a little too far forward, but not enough to cause a major problem.
The LSK mounting kit
The LSK mounting kit provides a simple removable platform for vehicle mounting many of the Clulite gun lights giving you a search light facility.
Though the LSK kit is designed to work with other lights in the Clulite range, it actually give you three possible ways to mount the Interceptor
The basic suction mount and bar fitted to the windscreen. You can also see the spacer ring that you use on a 25mm scope tube before fitting the clamp, as the bar on the LSK is 25mm in diameter.
In its default mounting style, the Interceptor is fitted to the LSK’s bar just as you would onto a scope tube. You can fit it above or below the bar, but due to leaving clearance for opening the car door, here it is mounted above.
Side view showing the Interceptor is well clear of the door.
The LSK comes with a clamp mount similar to the scope mount but instead of the post to fit the lamp to, it has a holder to grip the handle of the Clulite gun lights. After fitting the Interceptor’s handle, you can then insert this into the holder supplied with the LSK.
This provides an alternative grip for adjusting the light , and allows it to be removed and used hand held. In this configuration the mount is still just clear of the door (the chrome part is not part of the door)
The LSK also comes with an extended handle to make it easier to adjust the position of the light, unfortunately, this is not compatible with the Interceptor……at least not unless you make a minor modification…
Of course with the extended handle, it is more comfortable to use, but does get in the way of the door. You have to move it out of the way to get in and out of the vehicle.
The minor modification is to add a short piece of 10mm threaded rod. The Clulite plastic threads are not actually 10mm, but it is close enough not to cause damage (just screw it in until it stops) in the handle, and the adjustable post which the Interceptor fits onto accepts the 10mm threaded rod well enough.
As supplied the extended handle has a threaded hole into which the threaded rod can be fitted. The shorter Interceptor handle, with plastic thread is shown as well.
The modified extended handle.
The Interceptors beam slicing through the dark.
The Interceptor has proved to be a very versatile light, giving you plenty of usable range right out to the specified 300m.
The tightly focussed beam is excellent for illuminating the view through your scope, but not so good for general searching as the tight beam is very narrow. Even with a 4x scope the view was usable, with the best results around 8x.
The inclusion of a handle for hand held use, and the optional LSK mounting kit for on-car use increase the versatility further still.
The interceptor has been just as at-home on an air rifle as on a firearm. The extra size, when compared to ‘tactical’ gun lights, is rewarded with a brightly lit scope view even at extended ranges.
Review sample provided by Clulite.
I’ll update post 2 of this thread once I have some more comments to add....