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Thread: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

  1. #1
    Flashaholic* subwoofer's Avatar
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    Default The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    ...And it has started. Official start time 21:00 (GMT+1) 9 May 2013.

    One of Armytek's claims is a fantastically long runtime on the lowest firefly mode. This mode is also the reserve output circuit should the main driver fail.

    The latest V2.5 Predator Pro's specifications mention a maximum runtime of 130 days. The earlier Predator V1.2 had this at 100 days.

    I've decided to see if these incredible runtimes are possible, so have taken all three Predators that I have out of service, and have dedicated them to an endurance challenge.

    There are a total of four lights entering this challenge. The Predator V1.2 XP-G R5, Predator X V2.0 XM-L U2, Predator V2.0 XP-G2 R5 (which appears to be the same as the latest V2.5 XP-G2 version) and a mystery contender.

    The target is 120 days, but I will run this endurance runtime test to its conclusion to see just how long they will go.



    The conditions of the test are that all three Predators are set to the default 18650 power source with 2.8V cut-off.

    A set of 6 Xtar 3100mAh 18650 cells which have undergone a similar numbers of power cycles, were charged on a Xtar WP6 charger and then left a day to rest.

    All resting voltages were measured and the closest four were chosen to run the test. As it happens all four measured 4.17V.

    The lights were all pre-set to their firefly modes using another cell and once confirmed, the test 18650s were installed.

    At the chosen start time, the two Predator V2.0s were simultaneously switched on immediately followed by the Predator V1.2 and mystery contender.

    All the lights will be kept together so that ambient conditions will be identical.

    The 120 day challenge has begun!

    So can the do it....how far will they get?
    Last edited by subwoofer; 05-09-2013 at 12:37 PM.
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  2. #2
    Flashaholic* subwoofer's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Reserved for updates....




    Day of
    Challenge - Date
    10 ---------- 19/05/2013 21:00
    20 ---------- 29/05/2013 21:00
    30 ---------- 08/06/2013 21:00
    40 ---------- 18/06/2013 21:00
    50 ---------- 28/06/2013 21:00
    60 ---------- 08/07/2013 21:00
    70 ---------- 18/07/2013 21:00
    80 ---------- 28/07/2013 21:00
    90 ---------- 07/08/2013 21:00
    100 -------- 17/08/2013 21:00
    110 -------- 27/08/2013 21:00
    120 -------- 06/09/2013 21:00


    With the challenge now complete and all final tests completed, here are a list of thread highlights:

    120 Day Challenge complete

    Success!

    First light out

    Second light out

    Last light out + Summary

    Cell test
    Last edited by subwoofer; 09-23-2013 at 01:19 AM.
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  3. #3
    *Flashaholic* kj2's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Cool

  4. #4
    Flashaholic* AnAppleSnail's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Your mystery contender appears to be a bullet-style ("5mm") LED. I'm curious, but I suppose we'll be in the dark until the end? Neat test! Good luck.
    My biggest light-hog is my camera.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Yes, neat test. I hope this inspires others to test the moon or firefly modes of lights they aren't actively using.

    Fours months to find out the mystery contender? Should it last shorter or shorter?
    Note to self, turn off flashlight when a plane is over head. Don't want them trying to land.

  6. #6
    Flashaholic* subwoofer's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by AnAppleSnail View Post
    Your mystery contender appears to be a bullet-style ("5mm") LED. I'm curious, but I suppose we'll be in the dark until the end? Neat test! Good luck.
    I've been a little misleading with the second photo, but check the challenge, it is for four 18650 powered lights.

    The mystery contender is not pictured. The two lights in the middle are the V2.0 Predators and the other two in this photo are not 18650 lights.
    Last edited by subwoofer; 05-09-2013 at 01:11 PM.
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  7. #7
    Flashaholic* subwoofer's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by PocketBeam View Post
    Fours months to find out the mystery contender? Should it last shorter or shorter?
    I suspect it will be revealed much sooner (as soon as it goes out), but for now this fact may safely be made the subject of suspense since it is of no significance whatsoever :-)
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    Flashaholic* BLUE LED's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    I think the Predator X, XM-L U2 will last the longest.

  9. #9

    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    this is going to be a looooong thread. i thought about doing this but i couldnt be without my V2 for so long. good luck ill check back in half a year.

  10. #10
    Enlightened
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    This challenge is a GREAT idea. Great in that now I will looking at my friggin calendar for at least the next 100 days. It's like being in jail counting the friggin days. All kidding aside this test is a great idea and I will follow the progress / process. It is like being in jail though, counting the days.
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  11. #11

    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Hey Subwoofer,

    Somewhat related....but do you know if all "micromodes" are available on the reserve circiut? According to armyTek's literature I believe that the reserve circuit is capable of 0.1lm/0.5lm and 1.5lm? Can you shed any light?

    I let a 1500mah K2 LiFePo4 loose at full stabilization and got ~49 minutes at max output in a V2.0 X-PG 5500k model predator.....seems to be right in line with their stated runtimes. They also switched from 2900 Panny's to 3100's for the firefly rating on the new lights. Interested in the outcome for sure!

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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Cool test, subscribed so I'll get an update when it finally produces some results.

  13. #13
    Flashaholic* subwoofer's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by gianetics View Post
    this is going to be a looooong thread. i thought about doing this but i couldnt be without my V2 for so long. good luck ill check back in half a year.
    I know I am going to miss them (even though I'll be checking in on them probably twice a day) knowing I can't touch them.

    Quote Originally Posted by GotDogs View Post
    This challenge is a GREAT idea. Great in that now I will looking at my friggin calendar for at least the next 100 days. It's like being in jail counting the friggin days. All kidding aside this test is a great idea and I will follow the progress / process. It is like being in jail though, counting the days.
    Absolutely, the 'sentence' I am now serving is just stating to sink in, but I'm determined to get through it.

    I've put the challenge lineup in a drawer which I open at least twice a day. This is so I can keep them out of the way, but regularly monitored.

    Quote Originally Posted by SCD View Post
    Hey Subwoofer,

    Somewhat related....but do you know if all "micromodes" are available on the reserve circiut? According to armyTek's literature I believe that the reserve circuit is capable of 0.1lm/0.5lm and 1.5lm? Can you shed any light?

    I let a 1500mah K2 LiFePo4 loose at full stabilization and got ~49 minutes at max output in a V2.0 X-PG 5500k model predator.....seems to be right in line with their stated runtimes. They also switched from 2900 Panny's to 3100's for the firefly rating on the new lights. Interested in the outcome for sure!
    The micromodes are the set of three firefly modes available during normal operation and as far as I know, the idea of the reserve circuit is to give only the lowest output mode 0.1lm, if and when the main circuit is damaged.

    I don't fancy trying to blow the main circuit to test the function of the reserve circuit.
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  14. #14

    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Nice one.

  15. #15

    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    This is great. Subwoofer, I salute you, your lights, and your poor batteries
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  16. #16

    Default The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Subwoofer, you have the ability to measure the output right? Would you mind measuring the modes you are testing, including some benchmarks sub-lumen lights like Quarks and Zebralights (if you have them)?

    I find the low and sub-lumen specs of some manufacturers off by multiples (SC52 for example), which has a huge impact on spec'd runtimes.

  17. #17
    Flashaholic* subwoofer's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by reppans View Post
    Subwoofer, you have the ability to measure the output right? Would you mind measuring the modes you are testing, including some benchmarks sub-lumen lights like Quarks and Zebralights (if you have them)?

    I find the low and sub-lumen specs of some manufacturers off by multiples (SC52 for example), which has a huge impact on spec'd runtimes.
    Unfortunately at the moment my integrating sphere's (IS) sensitivity means I cannot measure below 2lm. These sub lumen outputs are very difficult to measure accurately.

    I am considering a redesign of the IS sensor to include an ultra sensitive setting, but calibrating this to actual lumens will be next to impossible. I'm also not convinced it will have a linear response.

    During my IS design and testing I did have a sensor design which picked up a dim table lamp being turned on in the room and was impossible to use during the daytime as the background light levels were too high. It was so sensitive that even the light from the meter's display affected the reading it was showing. As long as I can achieve a constant ambient light level I can take off the background reading and get a measurement.

    This challenge thread may well inspire me to revisit a sub-lumen sensor for the IS (as an add-on sensor module). If I do I'll post some readings from this.

    The photo in post 2 of this thread shows the Quark Regular AA on the left of the two Predator V2.0 with a Photon Freedom Micro on the right. The idea was to use the photo to show the relative brightness of these firefly modes.
    Last edited by subwoofer; 05-10-2013 at 07:25 AM.
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    Flashaholic* Shooter21's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Awesome cant wait to see the results of this. Only light i know of that reached 100 days of runtime is a quark so this should be interesting.

  19. #19

    Default The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by subwoofer View Post
    Unfortunately at the moment my integrating sphere's (IS) sensitivity means I cannot measure below 2lm. These sub lumen outputs are very difficult to measure accurately.

    I am considering a redesign of the IS sensor to include an ultra sensitive setting, but calibrating this to actual lumens will be next to impossible. I'm also not convinced it will have a linear response.

    During my IS design and testing I did have a sensor design which picked up a dim table lamp being turned on in the room and was impossible to use during the daytime as the background light levels were too high. It was so sensitive that even the light from the meter's display affected the reading it was showing. As long as I can achieve a constant ambient light level I can take off the background reading and get a measurement.

    This challenge thread may well inspire me to revisit a sub-lumen sensor for the IS (as an add-on sensor module). If I do I'll post some readings from this.

    The photo in post 2 of this thread shows the Quark Regular AA on the left of the two Predator V2.0 with a Photon Freedom Micro on the right. The idea was to use the photo to show the relative brightness of these firefly modes.
    I feel I can quite accurately measure down to 0.10 lumens (from a 125 lumen calibration, btw) with a DSLR and bounced ambient light only - it's a dead linear measurement as well. Through a second stage measurement, I can read down to 0.01 lms easily. I took a look at one of your reviews and believe you to be using a DSLR as well... if you're interested in discussing the methodology, please PM me - would love add another tool to your toolbox, esp. since you're a CPF reviewer.

    Which Quark emitter BTW... my XPG-S2 measures ~0.17 lms and my XML ~0.33 lms - and not surprisingly, in my own moonlight mode runtime tests, the S2 ran about exactly 2x longer.

  20. #20
    Flashaholic* subwoofer's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by reppans View Post
    I feel I can quite accurately measure down to 0.10 lumens (from a 125 lumen calibration, btw) with a DSLR and bounced ambient light only - it's a dead linear measurement as well. Through a second stage measurement, I can read down to 0.01 lms easily. I took a look at one of your reviews and believe you to be using a DSLR as well... if you're interested in discussing the methodology, please PM me - would love add another tool to your toolbox, esp. since you're a CPF reviewer.

    Which Quark emitter BTW... my XPG-S2 measures ~0.17 lms and my XML ~0.33 lms - and not surprisingly, in my own moonlight mode runtime tests, the S2 ran about exactly 2x longer.
    Thanks for the offer, but I have read your thread on this subject and I'm not keen to employ this method myself.

    I am intending to build the second sensor array for sub-lumen readings. Just have to find the time.....
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  21. #21

    Default The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by subwoofer View Post
    Thanks for the offer, but I have read your thread on this subject and I'm not keen to employ this method myself.

    I am intending to build the second sensor array for sub-lumen readings. Just have to find the time.....
    Fair enough... good luck on your sensor array.

  22. #22
    Flashaholic* subwoofer's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    So, the sensitive sensor array is now well and truly rattling around in my brain.

    In the mean time though, as a visual ranking in lowest output:

    Lowest
    Predator v1.2 (this one may be a surprise contender)
    Predator X V2.0
    Predator V2.0 XP-G2
    Mystery light
    Brightest
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    Flashaholic* BLUE LED's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Your results are not a surprise to me and in accordance with what I was expecting. The low of the XP-G R5 Predator is very low in my unit due to the lack of efficiency of the XP-G. I moded one of them to a XP-G2 and it was instantly much brighter. This was then confirmed in the lab in Kensington.

  24. #24
    Flashaholic* tobrien's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    this'll be nice
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  25. #25
    Flashaholic* subwoofer's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Update:

    Between 23:00 16/5/2013 and 06:00 17/5/2013 the output of the mystery contender has dropped significantly.

    This gives approximately (average of the two times) 7.2 days of runtime. However, there is still output, so this one is not quite over yet. Even at 7.2 days, this is still more than its specification, so is not doing badly at all.

    It is now the dimmest of the four.

    There is no apparent change to the output of any of the ArmyTek lights.
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    nice pictures!

  27. #27
    Flashaholic* subwoofer's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Well it was always only a three horse race, and the mystery light is now well and truly out. The protection circuit has been tripped and the test cell completely depleted.

    Following the drop in output there was not much runtime left, so I'm going to call it 7.5 days and out.

    The three Predators are only just getting into their stride.
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  28. #28

    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Are you going to reveal the identity of the mystery light now that it has flamed out or are you going to wait until the end of the test?
    "The search for The One True EDC is not a path leading to a door, but a road leading forever to the horizon." - StarHalo

  29. #29

    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    This test is a great idea, I'm receiving my ArmyTek Predator Pro v2.5 very soon I hope. Ill keep checking this thread

  30. #30
    Enlightened Sukram's Avatar
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    Default Re: The ArmyTek 120 day Challenge!!!

    Share your thoughts about your Armytek Predator Pro with us

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