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Thread: Nitecore TIP2017:keychain-light, XP-G2 S3, 360 lumens , USB-rechargeable, (beam)shots

  1. #1
    Flashaholic* kj75's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Nitecore TIP2017:keychain-light, XP-G2 S3, 360 lumens , USB-rechargeable, (beam)shots

    In the past seasons, Nitecore has launched a complete family of keychain-lights: the Tubes, T-series and the TIP. In particular the TIP has become a very popular light in short time. But, a lot of user would like to see some changes to this light. Therefore, Nitecore recently has upgraded the TIP to a 2017-version. Main changes to this tiny one are the renewed interface (you can choose out of two modes now) and the new clip that also protects the micro-USB port. Nitecore shipped a sample to me, and I tried the light out. In this review I’ll show you the new TIP and give you my opinions about it; also I will compare it to some other keychain-lights!

    Nitecore has updated the TIP


    to a 2017-version


    powered by (the same) XP-G2 S3 LED


    but some external and internal changes


    like the new clip


    and the new modes


    lightweight


    but a “full” flashlight!


    To start with, the features and specifications here, given by Nitecore:

    Metallic keychain light
    • Fitted with a CREE XP-G2 S3 LED capable of outputting 360 lumens
    • Integrated “Precision Digital Optics Technology” provides extreme reflector performance
    • Built-in Li-ion battery
    • USB rechargeable with onboard charging circuit
    • Multi-purpose clip
    • Daily and constant-on modes available
    • Dual switch design
    • 4 brightness levels with direct access to low and turbo outputs
    • Memory function
    • High-efficiency regulation circuit provides unwavering output
    • Advanced temperature regulation (ATR)
    • Built-in power indicator (Patent No. ZL201220057767.4)
    • Rear suspension ring capable of sustaining 30kg weight
    • HAIII military grade hard-anodized
    • Impact resistant to 1.5 meters

    The dimensions:


    2.39” (60.8mm) x 0.96” (24.5mm) x 0.54” (13.8mm)
    Weight: 0.83oz (23.5gram) (with battery)

    And the output specs:


    Unboxing:

    A short unboxing chapter this time: I only got a sample this time, no package, no accessories. For what I’ve seen now, the finished TIP will come in a nice box, luckily Nitecore has banned out the blister-package. So, that’s a good improvement here, a neat box for the TIP 2017 here.





    Impressions:

    First impression: tiny and feather-light! It’s unbelievable that a light with this options and output only weighs only 23,5 grams! This aluminum light comes in seven different colors, so you can choose the one that fits best for you. The TIP 2017 has its own looks and shape, but it has an thought-out design. It has some nice accents too, like for example the silver ring around the lens. The used materials are of good quality, but the finishing at my sample could be little better. I detected some imperfections next to the seams, the rear suspension ring had some slack. There no engraving on this light, only a couple of symbols, the brand and the models’ name are “casted” in the aluminum body. Handy feature is that the TIP 2017 stands stable in all positions. On the upside of the TIP we see the two buttons, that have equal shape, only different symbols. The micro-USB port (without rubber cover) is on the side. The unprotected port is one of the main things that Nitecore has fixed at the 2017-version: the new clip covers the port and protects it against damage. Nice fact is that the clip can be added in four ways; adding and removing is an easy job; the clip will fix itself in the notches on the body. The clip is also needed to prevent the TIP 2017 against accidentally turning on. Looking into the lens we see a textured reflector without defects, but the XP-G2 S3 LED was off-center at my sample. Hope this will be better at the stock-version. All-in-all I can say that the overall quality and finishing of the TIP 2017 is okay; I kept in mind here that had my hands to a sample. Scroll down for a couple of pictures that show more impressions and details of the TIP2017!

    the “updated” version of the popular Nitecore TIP


    the TIP 2017


    stands stable in any position


    the new clip is the most striking detail


    feather-light and so tiny!


    at close we see some imperfections around the seams


    the suspension ring can withstand 30 kilograms!


    main task of the clip is to protect the micro-USB port


    orange-peel reflector for a smooth beam


    water resistant to IP54 standard


    the clip can be added and removed easily



    and protects against accidentally-on at this way


    the big buttons are easy to locate, but less easily distinguishable


    the brands’ name is “casted” in the body


    a close up to the notches that hold the clip


    orange-peel reflector for a smooth beam


    buttons have the same shape


    sturdy and handy clip


    charging the TIP 2017: easy job, the built-in LED informs about the progress


    green means fully charged, job is quickly done


    some outdoor shots: the TIP has nice metallic blue color


    also impressive output to its size


    has a lot of carrying-options


    for example at your cap


    and will help you in a lot of situations


    nice silver accents around the lens


    so tiny, but so many options!


    a great EDC-light


    User interface:

    Like I told you earlier, the TIP is tiny and has little weight. So this light fits in almost every pocket and is a real EDC-light. Because it has a flat surface, you’ll have the best grip with the clip added-on. The stiff buttons always will protect against slipping out of your hand. Wearing the TIP 2017 is your keyring is always a nice option; personally I don’t like this because the risk of scratches is a big one at this way. With the clip you’ll have a lot of extra wearing-options: at your cap or clothes for example.

    Charging the TIP 2017 is an easy job, and average it will be fully loaded within an hour. Simple connect a random micro-USB plug to the port; the built-in indicator will inform you about the progress, and light up green when the charging-job is done. The TIP 2017 has also built-in power check: A single click at the mode-button and the led indicator will flash one, two or three times. The more flashes, the better battery status. So, no accurate voltage-reading here, but I’m happy with this feature too. If the battery-voltage is critical, it will flash repeatedly.

    A new option to the 2017-TIP is that you can program the light, you can switch between two user-modes. This is a great feature of the TIP, now you can adjust the light to your wishes. The light has a “Daily” and a “Constant” mode. You can easily check/choose in what mode you are by pressing and holding both buttons: One flash means daily, two flashes is for constant. In daily mode the TIP 2017 always turns off after 30 seconds, no matter or you turn on at normal or use the momentary function. In constant mode the light stays on. To me, de daily mode is a very good addition; this is ideal for short illumination and is also a good protection when the light will accidentally be activated in your pocket. You won’t be surprised be a completely depleted cell after wearing in your pocket…

    A single click on the mode button will turn on or off the light, by using the mode button you can cycle through the modes, only upwards. Works fine and without issues. By the way, if you are in daily-mode and the light turns off after 30 seconds, you can get (for one time) in constant mode by turning the light again on within three seconds. Can be helpful if you need light for some longer time. Nice find of Nitecore! Another strong point is that the TIP 2017 has momentary on too, but only for low and turbo mode. Press and hold the power-button (for low) or the mode-button (for turbo) and hold it for more than two seconds. If you release the button the light will shut off. If you release within two seconds, the light will stay on at low or turbo. So, two direct-modes here. In any normal mode, you can go into momentary-turbo by pressing the mode button. This means that you only can get into constant turbo from off, otherwise it is a burst-mode. The light will go into turbo for maximum 30 seconds to protect this tiny one and its battery against damage.

    So, I can say the TIP 2017 has a thought-out interface with a bunch of (instant)modes. I really like the both user-modes too, a great addition to this EDC-light!

    Modes:

    Like we saw earlier, the TIP 2017 has two main-modes: Daily and Constant. The output modes are equal, starting at LOW > MID > HIGH > TURBO. The spacing is very good, and the light has a good low 1 lumen-mode. Two instant modes: direct-LOW and direct-TURBO here. The light has MOMENTARY too, only at LOW and TURBO. No special / flashing modes can be found on the TIP. The light has both VOLTAGE indication as LOW-VOLTAGE warning. No LOCK-OUT, you have lock it out by sliding the clip over the buttons. I’m happy with the modes on the TIP 2017, if fits to most needs; maybe a SOS-mode would make it even better.


    Size comparison:

    The TIP 2017 shown here with some other recent keyring lights; all are USB-rechargeables but have different LEDS and output. I’ll use these three later for my beamshots too.

    CR123A, Nitecore TIP2017, Fenix UC01 and MecArmy SGN7


    Nitecore TIP2017, Fenix UC01 and MecArmy SGN7


    Nitecore TIP2017, Fenix UC01 and MecArmy SGN7


    the fronts: XP-G2 S3, Nichia high performance LED and XP-G2 S4


    the backs:
    Nitecore TIP2017, Fenix UC01 and MecArmy SGN7


    Tint:

    A coolwhite tint here for the TIP 2017, no surprise. The profile shows some blue in the spill, but no big issue to this version. Compared to the other key-chain lights that I showed you earlier the tint looks the same as the MecArmy, the tint of the UC01 (that is barely noticeable at the photo), is clearly more bluish.



    Beamprofile:

    The little reflector creates a rather big hotspot and corona and not that much spill. So, it’s clear that this light is made to illuminate the closer distance. A usable beam to and EDC-light, not that floody, so a good option to illuminate your trail during a walk or running. No defects in the beam, neither PWM.

    Beamshots:

    Let’s have a look now at the output. Starting by projecting the TIP 2017 on a white wall. Distance to the wall is about one meter.

    Camera-settings: ISO100, F/2,7, WB daylight, 1/125 sec, 35mm








    GIF-picture:


    Going outdoors now! Some beamshots here at closer range; illuminating some lines with little trees. Starting by showing the four output modes of the TIP 2017. I used the burst-option for turbo here; as I told you earlier, the TIP 2017 has constant-turbo too.

    Camera-settings: ISO100, F/2.7, WB daylight, 4 sec, 35mm








    GIF-picture:


    As you can see at the photo below, the TIP 2017 is a very nice option to light up your trail; it has a smooth beam.

    the Nitecore TIP 2017 at highest level


    A shoot-out against the UC01 here. The Fenix has only 45 lumens and no reflector, so this light is made for very close range and is no match for the TIP 2017.

    the TIP 2017 against the Fenix UC01, both at highest level


    The next shoot-out is against the MecArmy SGN7. This light has more lumens, and a deeper and smooth reflector, so a different beamprofile.

    the TIP 2017 against the MecArmy SGN7, both at turbo


    Conclusion:

    The TIP 2017 is compact, lightweight and powerful. Above that, it is easily and quickly to recharge and has a good interface with a bunch of output options. Especially the programmable output modes are a big plus to the updated version. Thanks to the handy clip the 2017-version is protected better against dust and dirt, and has better carrying options too. I would like to see improvements on the finishing (LED and edges); but I tested a sample, maybe Nitecore has improved this a the stock version.

    Overall, this is one of the greatest and most complete EDC-option I had my hands on. Recommended!

    Thanks to Nitecore for providing me the TIP 2017!

    Last edited by kj75; 04-05-2017 at 02:28 AM.

  2. #2
    A&Q Moderator
    Woods Walker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nitecore TIP2017:keychain-light, XP-G2 S3, 360 lumens , USB-rechargeable, (beam)s

    Nice review! Not sure if this is really an improvement over the previous version.
    The TK20. Yes it still rocks.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Nitecore TIP2017:keychain-light, XP-G2 S3, 360 lumens , USB-rechargeable, (beam)s

    Nice review.

    I wonder if those clips fit the 2016 TIPs and if they can be purchased separately? I'd like to have them for my two TIPs.

  4. #4
    Flashaholic* Timothybil's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nitecore TIP2017:keychain-light, XP-G2 S3, 360 lumens , USB-rechargeable, (beam)s

    I was just checking to see if Nitecore was going to make a Nichia version of this one, and they are. I was looking at the specs for that one, and fired up the old four banger Windows calculator to do some comparisons of output. It turns out that for the three highest modes, the Nichia version has 2/3 the lumen output of the Cree emitter, which is no surprise to us. What I found interesting is that both versions had a one lumen low. I don't know if that is because they rounded up the 0.66 lumens to 1, or if it was an actual driver programming. I have little experience with programming a driver, is it actually possible to do something like that?

    From the description and this review, I think I would really like this version of the TIP. Unfortunately, I have two of the original TIPS, version 1.5 & 2.0. I say one is version 1.5, because it doesn't do the red LED blip when going into lockout, but lockout drains the light in about three weeks. Between those two and the couple of Tools I have, as well a a few BLF348s, I can't justify any more EDC size lights on my budget. Maybe I'll give away the original TIPS, then maybe I can talk myself into getting one of these.
    Remember, Two is One, and One is None!.

  5. #5
    KITROBASKIN's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nitecore TIP2017:keychain-light, XP-G2 S3, 360 lumens , USB-rechargeable, (beam)s

    Hopefully Timothybil will try a Nichia 2017 TIP, as well as others, to get some daily use impressions. This version could work for some people seems, quite a different user interface than the other flashlights of this genre.

  6. #6
    Flashaholic* Timothybil's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nitecore TIP2017:keychain-light, XP-G2 S3, 360 lumens , USB-rechargeable, (beam)s

    Quote Originally Posted by KITROBASKIN View Post
    Hopefully Timothybil will try a Nichia 2017 TIP, as well as others, to get some daily use impressions. This version could work for some people seems, quite a different user interface than the other flashlights of this genre.
    I will gladly post my impressions and limited testing if someone would be so kind as to send me one so I can do so. Otherwise as I stated, I am not planning on purchasing any at this time. I just found out that two of three ACA insurers here in the great state of Iowa will not be offering health insurance in 2018. One of those two is my current insurer. There is some question as to whether the third and last insurer will drop Iowa as well, leaving about 40,000 of us without insurance. So I will be squirreling away every penny I can in anticipation of higher health care costs next year. Bummer.
    Remember, Two is One, and One is None!.

  7. #7
    Flashaholic Geode's Avatar
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    Default Re: Nitecore TIP2017:keychain-light, XP-G2 S3, 360 lumens , USB-rechargeable, (beam)s

    Great review, thanks. I have a 2016 version and it is an excellent keychain light. If you have a 2016 model, is there an difference in the size of the 2017 vs 2016 versions?

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