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Thread: Review: Acebeam D45 (XHP70 3x18650)

  1. #1
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    Default Review: Acebeam D45 (XHP70 3x18650)

    ...for submission in the Reviews forum

    This light was sent by Acebeam for review.


    Acebeam D45 is a new diving light by Acebeam. D45 comes in a nice and solid yellow(ish) plastic case. I would say that the quality of this case is much better than we have used to see on other companies flashlight kits. Plastic case may be very good addition for diving light because most of the people would carry diving light on site in a car among other diving stuff. Case is good for protecting purposes and for some most used accessories.





    At first look and first touch it is possible to say that D45 is much more diving light comparing with other diving lights that Acebeam has released so far. It is more solid, more compact and much brighter than its predecessors D06V/D10V/D400. There is a reason for that. Acebeam has been planning D45 for a long time and has included many different people (including hobby and professional divers) all around the world into designing and testing process. Creation of this light began just after D06V/D10V release years ago.



    Manufacturer specs of D45

    LED: Cree XHP70 LED with lifespan of 50,000 hours
    Max output 4000lumens (3*18650 batteries )

    Mode1: Low - 350lms (12.5hour)
    Mode2: Mid - 750lms (6.2hour)
    Mode3: High - 1500lms (2.2hour)
    Mode4: Turbo - 4000lms (1.4hour)
    Double Press: SOS - 350lms
    Working Voltage: 8-12.6V
    Max beam distance: 374 meters
    Impact resistance: 1.2 meters
    Switch: Magnetic Control Switch
    Moderately texturing (orange peel) finished reflector
    Underwater 200 meters
    Peak beam intensity: 35000cd
    Size: 166.5mm (length) x 58mm (head diameter) x 43.9mm (tube diameter)
    Weight: 436g (without battery)
    Made of durable aircraft grade aluminium
    Surface treatment: premium type III hard-anodizing.
    Toughened ultra-clear glass lens with anti-reflective coating
    Copper base plate for more efficient heat

    *Runtimes has been tested using 3*18650 2600mAh (High Drain?) batteries.


    After opening D45 plastic case first thing you will find is a strange accessory. It took about 30 minutes for me to figure it out what it is and how it is used. Actually it is a glove or holster to fix the light on top of your wrist. Made for divers to keep their hands free on water.



    After that you will find the light, under-water ball head mount, user manual and warranty card.



    When digging deeper you will find lanyard, hexagonal wrench and bolt for ball head mount (packed into plastic wrap), spare O-rings and two desiccant bags. It is possible to make some additional room into case to fit spare batteries in it.



    Plastic warranty card is standard for Acebeam lights. It contains fields for customer name, light serial number and purchase date. Also short description of warranty itself.



    Acebeam D45 has quite unusual size. It is much smaller light than you would expect from 3x18650 4000lm diving light. At the same time it feels very solid. Visually D45 is not completely different from non-diving flashlights and can be used as ordinary flashlight any time.



    Light itself consists of three main parts: head, battery tube, battery carrier.



    D45 has OP (orange peel) reflector and thick glass lens with anti-reflective coating. Light head is well sealed and is not openable. Around the head there is around 2,5mm thick orange O-ring to protect light when put down/dropped or when the light is moving by itself (e.g. on rough sea). Also very good feature for a light that is very likely to be used in harsh conditions. Light itself is designed to withstand pressures up to 20bar (200m). So that is why number of openable body parts is minimum – light head and battery tube. D45 has tested impact resistance up to 1.2 meters.



    D45 is diving light and there is standard 1” ball head mount included in set. It can be attached to light using threaded hexagonal socket head bolt. It is possible to install the mount on both sides of the light. 90 degrees left and 90 degrees right from the switch. So when mounted on stand you are going to have the switch on the left side or on the right side of the light.



    On the opposite side of the switch there is third threaded hole. It has standard ¼” BSW thread (British Standard Whitworth) and suits most of the photo stands. So you are able to use this light on standard underwater equipment and on standard photo stands without making any additional modifications or spending money for separate equipment.



    To ensure good heat dissipation and maximum thermal conductivity D45 head is covered with deep cooling fins. D45 gets warm quickly when using on maximum setting. This is normal for compact XHP70 LED light. Under water it is not an issue tough. When switching down to 1500lm setting then light starts to cool down without any issues. D45 has timed step-down. My sample of the light steps down after 2 minutes on max mode. You can re-activate max mode quickly when switching light off and on.

    D45 has stainless steel magnetic press button to switch the light on and to change the modes. This switch is not connected with light internal components mechanically. So there is no possibility that it may cause water leak inside the light. I have seen same type of switches before on other diving lights but mostly made of plastic. Spring under D45 switch is also much tenser than I have seen so far. It is also good thing because under water the switch has to suck in all the water that you pressed out during switching to retain its initial position.

    Due construction magnetic pressure switches tend to have a small delay. D45 is no exception. To turn the light on and off you have to press and hold the switch more than 1 second. To change the mode you have to press and release the switch in less than 1 second. Mode changes after you have released the switch. Quick double press will activate “hidden” SOS mode. Under water your moves are not as quick as on dry land. So this shouldn’t be an issue for diver. For non-diver users this UI (switch feedback) may be a bit unusual. I have tested D45 inside a bucket of water. Not a real diving conditions but I can say that it works well inside clean water.

    D45 has memory function for all modes except SOS.



    D45 battery tube is machined from aluminium and anodized – threads as well. Text is clear and without defects. One side of the battery tube there are manufacturer company name and web address, on the other side there are light model name, serial number and CE/RoHS marking. On the lower part of battery tube there is place for lanyard. You are able to fit lanyard with thickness up to 5mm or smaller carrabin. Battery tube top part has double O-rings to ensure water resistance. Threads and O-rings were very well lubricated in my sample.





    Tail part of battery tube is made of polished stainless steel.



    As stated before, this light uses three 18650 batteries. It is possible to install up to 69mm long batteries without any problems. Un-protected batteries fit well also. In general battery carrier is nice and solid. Springs are gold-plated and soldered to carrier with care (almost 360 degrees). In general battery carrier looks very similar to other carriers we have used to see. But actually there is one interesting feature...







    Many aluminium diving lights in D45 price range are constructed like most other normal lights. There is a spring on the bottom of battery tube and current (mostly minus contact) is lead through flashlight body to driver. When we are talking about diving lights then this is not very good solution (Why? Look into this: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/11143?page=5). Diving light will get much rough use and mechanical defects on light surface treatment are usual. If we put current through aluminium housing and include salty sea water then we will speed up corrosion of the light (or make it more intense). That may lead to different electrical and mechanical malfunctions/damages of the light. That is why Acebeam will not lead current through their new D45 body. Battery carrier sides are made of non-conductive materials. In the centre of carrier top part there is positive contact and around it negative contact. They will be connected to corresponding contacts on flashlight head.



    But inside the battery tube and on the lowest part of the carrier we will not find any springs...





    Acebeam uses magnetic levitation battery carrier design to avoid current conduction through the flashlight body and to make diving as safe as possible. Suggestion to add such feature to D45 came from professional divers.

    So what magnetic levitation battery carrier means? It is very simple. There is strong permanent magnet on the bottom of battery tube and other magnet on the battery carrier. Magnets are placed so that same poles are facing each other. It means that poles repel and magnetic force keeps carrier “floating” inside the battery tube (flashlight body).

    When batteries are not installed, then magnets push carrier up about 30mm.



    When batteries are installed, then magnets push carrier up about 15mm. Magnets are strong enough to dump mechanical shocks caused by drops and hits. You may hear some minor rattling inside the light if you shake it. It caused by “floating” battery carrier minor movement inside the battery tube.



    As you remember there was one “unusual” glove or holster included in standard set of D45.



    This is how you can use it when you are diving.





    Unfortunately I have no D45 beam shots. As you can expect from large XHP70 LED there is a plenty of light on max setting. Relatively small OP reflector combined with huge LED produces very even, wide and smooth beam. Indoors you are able to see hot spot well but in outdoor conditions in distances over 25...30m hot spot is nearly gone. All surroundings will be illuminated evenly. Light itself is driven quite hard on max and it produces wide useable light up to hundreds of meters. Colour temperature of D45 is not cold. It is quite close to neutral (natural) white.



    D45 also has very useable low battery warning. Light will generate quick series of flashes when battery voltage drops under 9,6V or output of the light drops under 350lm. This will leave diver enough time leave the water until light turns off. Also when running on max mode light will step down after low battery warning.



    Acebeam has done great job when designing this light. Building quality is exceptionally high. You can see it from different tiny details that are well thought out, made of quality materials and combined with each other into one piece. In my opinion D45 has exceptionally good quality/price ratio if you take into account all the useable accessories you get. It is also very good multi-purpose light. Because it is ment for diving it doesn’t mean that it cannot be used as ordinary flashlight. It can and it does its job very well.

    In conclusion I can say that Acebeam D45 is very welcome addition into today LED diving lights market. It’s compact, powerful and has good runtimes. I am not saying that this is the best diving light in its class at the moment (I am not a diver, that’s why) but I can say that it is not far off what I have seen and used so far.

    There are lot of positives in this light. But there are also some recommendations I would like Acebeam to consider in the future...

    1. Depending of purpose of diving and water quality (cleanliness) some divers prefer more concentrated light others prefer more flood. XHP70 LED in D45 is very good choice for floodlight. Acebeam may consider offering similar light with smooth reflector and XHP35(50) in it to produce more concentrated beam pattern. Then there is something for everyone.

    2. Under water you use a lot of light all the time and it is very likely that most of the diving lights are used on their max setting. Diving time is usually very limited (because of air supply). D45 steps down 50% after few minutes of use. When light is under water then it has almost perfect cooling. Using thermal control step-down may keep it running on max mode continuously for longer periods. Anyway, divers would carry Acebeam in their arms if they should be able to make continuous 3000...4000lm happen under water from such compact LED light as D45

    3. In some under water conditions small magnetic switch may be too hard to operate for divers (e.g. if they have thick rubber gloves on). Would like to see solid Acebeam’ish magnetic ring switch in the future on Acebeam diving lights.


    Thank you and hope you have enjoyed this review!


    Finally here are few Xtar D35/Acebeam D45 comparison photos. Two (probably) closest rivals in the market today regarding price and quality.








  2. #2

    Default Re: Review: Acebeam D45 (XHP70 3x18650)

    Thanks for the review, as I haven't found anywhere some beamshots: Do you have the possibility to add some?

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