I have been offering the various lights with a choice of Cree XM-L or Nichia High CRI (119 or 119V) LED now for some time. My reasoning was to either use the best LED in terms of quality of light (high CRI) or the LED capable of the greatest amount of light (lumens) which has been the Cree XM-L option. I recognize there is a broad gap between these two offerings and that for many of you, there would be a LED of preference not offered here.
There is no way I can offer even a small selection from all LED's available and certainly based on bin distinctions and differences. However I did decide to select a compromise or third solution hopefully bridging the gap. And this gap is also defined by the throw of a LED. My bias is admittedly towards flood where ever and whenever possible so my previous offerings of the LED's did not address a LED selected based on maximum lux or throw.
I have selected the Cree XP-G2 as the new addition to LED selection for a number of reasons and I also selected the bin with hopes of satisfying some of you not that enamored with the previous choices. I have opted for a XP-G2 that is balanced between max lumens VS best quality of light. For this new LED to bridge the gap it seemed reasonable that it shared some of what each of the other LED's had to offer. The bin I am using is R3 E4 which provides a LED with reasonable flux, neutral tint and reasonable CRI.
I took some sample measurements comparing a Nichia 119 (500 mA max) with Cree XM-L and Cree XP-G2 (both at 650 mA max). These were all in a Haiku with 3S converter:
LED____lumens (low) __lumens (med)__lumens (high)___lux (1 meter)__CCT (kelvin)__CRI (average)
In regards to throw, the die size and thus surface brightness of the die is key when collimating the beam. The 119 has a smaller apparent image size than the XP-G2 and thus a smaller diameter spot. Both of these have significantly smaller dies than the XM-L and resulting smaller diameter or tighter angles in their collimated beams. The relative differences in lux as seen in the Haiku should follow through when the LED's are used behind the other reflectors in my offerings; namely the Makai and recent AquaRam.
The XP-G2 can be used in all of the McClickie lights as well as the Aqua series. With a max current of 1500 mA if you get a AquaRam or Aqua Mule I would not suggest you drive the LED beyond the 1400 max which is presently programmed in the lights.
The XP-G2 uses the same reflector in the Haiku as the 119 (this reflector was originally designed for the XP-G).
In addition to having to order a new run of MCPCB's to host the XP-G2 I also had to order a new run of reflectors. I could have held off on this had I limited their use to just the 119's. And in the spirit of full disclosure what finally provided the tipping point was my personal desire as well as an industrial request for a Royal Blue flashlight which was best obtained by using the Cree XP-C LED.
If any of you want one of my lights using the XP-G2 LED instead of the XM-L or 119(v), please indicate this choice in your e-mail request. The price for any of these lights will be the same price as that of the 119 version of the light. the stock level for high on a 3S converter based light engine u sing the XP-G2 will be 660 mA like the XM-L based Light engines.
It is my guess that this addition is part good news for those wanting such an option as well as bad news for those already confused by all of the alternatives and variations.
And lastly, if this addition is received as other additions have been in the past, one of the first inquires I get will be focused on asking if a different tint or bin of XP-G2 could be used as a substitute to what I am offering.