Consistently bright?

Illumination

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Plenty of lights these days have awesome turbo modes that can only be sustained for a couple of minutes before the light overheats and steps down.

What are some really bright single 18650 lights that can be used for a long period of time - say 15 minutes straight?
 

Connor

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The same awesome turbo mode light can do that - on a lower level, like e.g. any Zebralight at a 500-1000 lumens setting (at normal temperatures).
 

flatline

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Once you realize that 1000L isn't really much brighter than 400L in practice, stepping down becomes way less common.

--flatline
 

InvisibleFrodo

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What is “really bright”?
I realize that by today’s standards 100 lumens isn’t “really bright” but at one point in time, 100 lumens from a small light was absolutely incredible. And in all reality, 100 lumens is just as bright now as it was then. And as many have said, the dark isn’t getting any darker.
Maintaining 1000 lumens for an extended period isn’t easy, especially if we are talking about 1000 lumens coming out the front of the light, as opposed to emitter lumens, which many companies list as the brightness of the light. Like Archie said, Malkoff is designed for it. The hound dog has the size and thermal mass to make those output levels possible for longer periods. But you are certainly making a sacrifice in compactness, however in exchange for the loss in compactness, you are gaining a larger diameter reflector, and therefore you will get great throw. You may be very surprised by how much a large reflector with a concentrated throw oriented beam will effect your perceived brightness of the light.
 

Random Dan

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In my experience Zebralight has the best thermal management of any small lights. If held in hand for heat sinking the SC64 can maintain impressive brightness until the battery runs out.
 

WalkIntoTheLight

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I can run my Zebralight SC600w MkIV Plus at full output (2300 lumens) for 30 minutes, until the 18650 battery dies. BUT, I do this while cycling in cold weather. Though, I think it would also run without ramping down on a cold winter night.

Oh, you meant at room temperature? In that case, you're pretty-much restricted to about 500 lumens on all lights, unless they're a unnecessarily big 18650 light. You can grip a Zebralight tightly to extend its heat-sink into your hand. You might get 1000 lumens that way.

Or, on some lights (such as the Astrolux S43) you can turn off thermal controls, and just let them run sizzling hot. I do this on occasion, when the thermal ramp-down bugs me. But I wouldn't do it regularly, as it might damage the light (or yourself).

Finally, as mentioned before, there are some big 18650 lights, typically throwers, that are large and thus don't heat up much. Something like the Astrolux FT03 (which is actually a 26650 light but will run on an 18650), can run at 2000 lumens for a long time.
 

CarpentryHero

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I can run my Zebralight SC600w MkIV Plus at full output (2300 lumens) for 30 minutes, until the 18650 battery dies. BUT, I do this while cycling in cold weather. Though, I think it would also run without ramping down on a cold winter night.

Oh, you meant at room temperature? In that case, you're pretty-much restricted to about 500 lumens on all lights, unless they're a unnecessarily big 18650 light. You can grip a Zebralight tightly to extend its heat-sink into your hand. You might get 1000 lumens that way.

Or, on some lights (such as the Astrolux S43) you can turn off thermal controls, and just let them run sizzling hot. I do this on occasion, when the thermal ramp-down bugs me. But I wouldn't do it regularly, as it might damage the light (or yourself).

Finally, as mentioned before, there are some big 18650 lights, typically throwers, that are large and thus don't heat up much. Something like the Astrolux FT03 (which is actually a 26650 light but will run on an 18650), can run at 2000 lumens for a long time.

Yeah I think this nails it, most 18650 lights won’t maintain more than 600 lumens for 20 minutes, Zebralight sc600 mentioned is thermally regulated so it’ll give you all it can without being damaged. It can hold its 580 Lumen level for nearly a half hour here. To maintain a 1000 or more lumens you’d be better off going with a 26650 sized light or larger
 

lion504

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PFlexPro has some of the best thermal management in the business. Mine will run on high (near 1000 lumens) indefinitely if hand held. Here's a graph of the non-handheld output from my Convoy S2+:
s92RSne.jpg
 
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Tixx

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Plenty of lights these days have awesome turbo modes that can only be sustained for a couple of minutes before the light overheats and steps down.

What are some really bright single 18650 lights that can be used for a long period of time - say 15 minutes straight?

Should be based on your lumen need and not turbo specs since they are not meant to run on those levels for that long. So what lumen level do you need in realistic terms?
 

Illumination

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Need? To be honest 60 lumens probably enough. Want... well that’s another story!


Seriously I’m just reacting to the fact that companies advertise with their turbo ratings and often hide the limitations
 

CREEXHP70LED

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Malkoffs are generally designed to tolerate being run on high, from start to finish of a task.

Not only is this true, but no one I know of builds better modular lights.

Once you realize that 1000L isn't really much brighter than 400L in practice, stepping down becomes way less common.--flatline

Exactly. Get used to that old P60 for a week then use a 1,000 lumen light. Yes, I agree high lumens are fun and can help you stay safe but for mundane tasks not as needed as people think.

While the Elzetta is obviously not a 18650 light (but can be bored to be one) it runs at 930 lumens for one full hour before stepping down on 3 CR123's (Or when bored out to fit 18650 the chart below)


Bored-Elzetta-Charlie-Runtime.jpg
 
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peter yetman

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Back in the day, when i thought that a SF Fury was the Bee's Knees, I would have found the blue trace most attractive for that extra smigen of light. Now I find the green CR123 trace much more attractive for the taper.
How things change.
P
 

Tixx

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Need? To be honest 60 lumens probably enough. Want... well that’s another story!


Seriously I’m just reacting to the fact that companies advertise with their turbo ratings and often hide the limitations

Yeah, I think 99% of the community here is aware of that. You have many choices at 60 lumens. Enjoy.
 

alphaBRAVO

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Is this a matter of human perception, or practical real-world use? And "stay safe" how?

Not only is this true, but no one I know of builds better modular lights.



Exactly. Get used to that old P60 for a week then use a 1,000 lumen light. Yes, I agree high lumens are fun and can help you stay safe but for mundane tasks not as needed as people think.

While the Elzetta is obviously not a 18650 light (but can be bored to be one) it runs at 930 lumens for one full hour before stepping down on 3 CR123's (Or when bored out to fit 18650 the chart below)


Bored-Elzetta-Charlie-Runtime.jpg
 

Skaaphaas

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Is this a matter of human perception, or practical real-world use? And "stay safe" how?
Sometimes lights get used in defensive / offensive situations. In such instances you may want to have as much light as you can, either to give you most possible visual data you can get, or to remove your opposition’s ability to get visual data.

Imagine for a moment being a person with nefarious intent, approaching a potential victim in a darkened area. You suddenly get a 1000 lumens straight in the face. You cannot see beyond the light source, you cannot see what the person is doing, are they drawing a weapon? Are they getting help? Is your picture being taken? It would be in your best interest to alter your nefarious intentions to be more benign in nature.
 
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CREEXHP70LED

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Is this a matter of human perception, or practical real-world use? And "stay safe" how?



My quotes were to different people... Yes human perception is one key. 4000 lumens would roughly look twice as bright as 1000 lumens depending on the candela and tint of the LED. Even if the candela and tint were the same still you need at least 4 times the lumens to look twice as bright.

As far as staying safe by having more lumens on your night hike through bear, mountain lion or gator infested areas it helps.
 
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