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Thread: George Kemenes Omicron 10180: First Thoughts

  1. #1
    MikeSalt's Avatar
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    Default George Kemenes Omicron 10180: First Thoughts

    After a lengthy two-year hiatus from buying custom lights, I just happened to be browsing CPF, moping a bit about my Lummi Wee Ti that I'd lost years ago, and hoping that I might see one in the WTS section. As I scrolled, this thread just happened to jump out at me and sparked my interest. Having experienced what a lovely beam of light can be from the Nichia 219 in some of my other lights, to see it offered in tiny 10180 form, and with a proper driver, I just had to have it.

    First contact and it was very reassuring to find that George was an excellent communicator and took great pride in what he brings to the table. There's no shelf queens in my collection, so I chose the most practical material choice, titanium, and to improve grip on this tiny light, I opted for the bead-blast finish, with green trits so I could find it when I need it.

    After a slight heart-in-mouth moment due to the UK carrier having a massive IT meltdown over the bank holiday weekend and losing visibility of my package for 4 days, I finally laid my hands on this yesterday. Here are my ramblings of my first 24 hours with it.

    After unpackaging the light from the substantial packaging George had provided to protect it, I found the light in a very elegant presentation box.

    The first thing that struck me was how slender it was. My other two 10180 lights, a Wee SS and MecArmy X4S are much thicker lights. Even though the Omicron and X4S are about the same length, the Omicron feels the most compact of all three of them.



    The next thing that struck me was how gorgeous the bead-blast finish is compared to all the machined-finish lights I've owned before. It was also a lovely surprise to peer down the barrel and see a proper orange-peel reflector. I didn't even know they were available in this size!



    Next task was to load the 10180 cell. Check the original sales thread for compatible cells, I know for sure that AW 10180 cells are too short. MecArmy are described by George as the perfect fit. You'll notice that the threads are absolutely silky smooth at this point, which is very impressive in titanium at this tiny size.



    And those silky threads, coupled with the long, slender body allow for one-handed operation, which is rare for this size. As I was hoping, the colour temperature is gorgeous, there's no ugly tint or indeed tint variation across the beam, and the transition from spot to flood in the beam is so smooth. Unfortunately, I don't have a white wall for beam shots, so the door will have to do.



    And the best part? NO VISIBLE PWM IN ANY MODE! Not even the moonlight mode, although this isn't quite as low as moonlight in a Zebralight.

    The one criticism I had, and George knows about this, is the mode programming information in the paperwork he provided, which has been mangled in the word processor. Also, if you search for the guppydrv documents, you tend to find the Rev. 2 guide, which is wrong for this light. Just use this guide and you'll be fine.



    Being a twisty, programming takes a bit of a knack. I have been able to program it with twists, although I find the best way is to tighten the tailcap just to the point before activation, and tap the tailcap. Be aware that the guppydrv firmware was written for a reverse clicky, so when it talks about a tap, that's assumed to be a small break in the current, so your last tap or twist should hold the light in the on position for it to work.

    And my verdict after 24 hours? This is my new favourite light. The quality, the features, the aesthetics, the beam and even the man behind it, the Omicron is a truly wonderful light.



    And I would recommend getting one. Hurry though, looking at the last stock update and knowing two have sold recently, I reckon there are only 5 left, and I don't know if more will be made.

    Thanks for reading
    Last edited by MikeSalt; 05-11-2018 at 04:41 PM.

  2. #2
    xdayv's Avatar
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    Default Re: George Kemenes Omicron 10180: First Thoughts

    Thanks for this review. Having a Nucleus, I tend to gravitate to the Omicron naturally since its inception. I've still been on the verge of getting one mainly because this type of battery is a bit scarce from this side of the world. Other than that, this is really a keeper!
    Dave
    "two is one, one is none... three or more is fun."

  3. #3
    MikeSalt's Avatar
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    Default Re: George Kemenes Omicron 10180: First Thoughts

    I've ordered a few 10180 cells from here. Shipping wasn't bad either.

    I've got a MecArmy X4S to use for charging, however, at 100 mA, it charges the tiny 100 mAh cell a bit too quickly for my liking, so I've got a Veleno Designs 60 mA 10180 charger on the way from here.

  4. #4
    Modernflame's Avatar
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    Default Re: George Kemenes Omicron 10180: First Thoughts

    A beautiful light and an entertaining read. Thanks, Mike!
    ďMay it be a light to you in dark places, when all other lights go out.Ē
    J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

  5. #5
    Flashaholic* the0dore3524's Avatar
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    Default Re: George Kemenes Omicron 10180: First Thoughts

    Good write-up! Iíve wished someone would review this light for quite a while. Iím also on the cusp of biting, but Iím so broke!

  6. #6
    MikeSalt's Avatar
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    Default Re: George Kemenes Omicron 10180: First Thoughts

    Quote Originally Posted by Modernflame View Post
    A beautiful light and an entertaining read. Thanks, Mike!
    Quote Originally Posted by the0dore3524 View Post
    Good write-up! Iíve wished someone would review this light for quite a while. Iím also on the cusp of biting, but Iím so broke!
    Thanks for your kind words folks. I'm quite surprised to see a lack of write-ups. I ended up harassing known owners by PM for their honest thoughts before I committed.

  7. #7

    Default Re: George Kemenes Omicron 10180: First Thoughts

    Thanks for adding a review about these very little known lights. They're not going to be in my budget any time soon, but I've really been enjoying following his threads to see what he's coming up with and the numerous different special versions of even more exotic materials than titanium.

    I'm currently holding my Fenix E01 in hand, marvelling at how much smaller the Omicron is in your photo.

  8. #8
    MikeSalt's Avatar
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    Default Re: George Kemenes Omicron 10180: First Thoughts

    Quote Originally Posted by iamlucky13 View Post
    I'm currently holding my Fenix E01 in hand, marvelling at how much smaller the Omicron is in your photo.
    Thank you for your kind words, I thought the E01 would be a pretty useful reference point for most Flashaholics. I'm amazed at how many quality features George has managed to squeeze into such a tiny light.

  9. #9
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: George Kemenes Omicron 10180: First Thoughts

    I was on the cusp of buying one of these, but in the end, I just couldn't justify the cost to myself.
    A blog on small pocket tools, keychain gadgets and more!
    http://keychainpockets.blogspot.com/

  10. #10

    Default Re: George Kemenes Omicron 10180: First Thoughts

    Mike, I really appreciate you putting this review together. I think, you're the first one to do a proper review on any of my lights. I'm always curious to hear your and others' opinion whether it's positive or negative. I'm glad, the only issue you've had was the description of the mode groups...I've since copied your attached image and switched it in the description, thanks for posting it:-) I hope, the other lights in the line-up will meet your expectations as well:-) Cheers, and thanks again!

  11. #11
    ven's Avatar
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    Default Re: George Kemenes Omicron 10180: First Thoughts

    Great write up Mike, loving the tiny piece of functional art. Amazing what such a tiny light can do and so nicely.

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