I'm afraid to buy a new "nice" flashlight.

dim

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I'm afraid to buy a new "nice" flashlight.

This past holiday season I bought several flashlights for family, co-workers and myself.
These, amongst others, include...
4 Fenix L1T R80s
2 Terralus 2aa drop-ins (Cree) (what's the model number?)

All had the expected brightness.

The problem, I find, is with tint.
Of the four L1Ts, two had, what I consider, poor and, to me, "swampy" tint (think green). The third L1T is also a "greenie" but with which's bandwidth appears to be quite narrow, giving it's beam, both, a green, yet, icy appearance.

The two Terralux droppies are also quite green/yellow...too much so.

Only one L1T had a REALLY nice tint...with a touch of vanilla/cream that I like...giving it, both, a warm, yet, white appearance...a tint shared by my Inova XO3 (tiros) and Inova XO (1.4w).

As much as I may try to deny it to myself, I find tint to be sort of a big deal. I find myself, more often, reaching for a flashlight with better tint than with greater brightness. The greenies and purples sit in the flashlight draw.

Like other flashaholics with other (damn expensive) hobbies, I try to be wise about my flashaholic purchases.
At one time, I stayed away from the Chinese cheapies because of marginal, intermittent quality. But now, it seems that roles have reversed. Today, there are some very acceptable cheapies from the likes of DX and KD that, at their price points, are just as satisfying as Inovas and Surefires are at their's.

Sure, I'd like that one flashaholic purchase to satisfy everything that I need/want in a flashlight...but as a flashaholic, I know that ain't never gonna happen.

Right now (and money IS an object), I have a hard time justifying taking a chance on a $100, $150, $200+ flashlight when a $15, $20, $25 from, say, Romisen and others will do nicely, thank you.

73
dim
 

Badbeams3

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I`m like you but for a differant reason other than tint...the new bulbs are coming out...like the ssc7...or whatever its called...much brighter from what I read. For Christmass I bought the Fenix LXD Q5 group...very happy with the performance increase from the year before. But I will not buy another "expensive" light till next christmass...and I`ll do the same thing, buy whatever is the brightest...and give the old Q5 stuff away as gifts.

In the meantime I buy lower priced lights just to have fun and share in a little excitement with the group here...have the E01`s ordered...several for gifts.
 

2xTrinity

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I'm not buying any mroe LEDs until more start to come in a neutral white color temperature -- that is, emitters in the 3500-4500k range -- with at least the same efficiency as the ones out now. I will probably retrofit most of my current LEDs, as well. Most current LEDs are about 6000k (cool white).
Most incan flashlights run about 3000K. I want something dead in the middle, with nice spectrum, and until then, no more LEDs.
 

KeyGrip

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It's the classic emitter lottery, and every LED light, with the exception of the HDS GT series, is vulnerable to it. Where did you buy your Fenixes? It's possible that the dealer will exchange all of them based on tint.
 

kramer5150

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I am kind of coming to a similar conclusion, although I am not sure if it is correct...

True / False? Color tint has more to do with the performance characteristics of the individual emitter used, than the build quality of the light... assuming the quality of the light is high enough to provide adequate current/voltage to all the functional parts inside.
 

dim

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It's the classic emitter lottery, and every LED light, with the exception of the HDS GT series, is vulnerable to it. Where did you buy your Fenixes? It's possible that the dealer will exchange all of them based on tint.

All told, I gave away 9 flashies and droppies of the 13 that I bought.
Everyone was thrilled and surprised by their gifts.
The L1T with the vanilla tint is my EDC.
The "icy green" tinted L1T that was to be given as as gift, kept because of a no-show at the company party, will be a loaner for an up coming trip.
So, despite the very off tints of the L1Ts and Terralux droppies, they've all found a place...but not in my collection.

And, yeah, the Lottery... True, one must play to win...but in today's flashlight market, I'd much rather play for $15 than for $150.

73
dim
 

asdalton

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True / False? Color tint has more to do with the performance characteristics of the individual emitter used, than the build quality of the light... assuming the quality of the light is high enough to provide adequate current/voltage to all the functional parts inside.

Yes, absolutely.

So far, the only non-custom LED lights that seem to have predictably warm tints are the new Inova MP tactical series with the Luxeon K2 TFFC. And only time will tell whether this consistency is truly a characteristic of the K2 TFFC emitter, or just a good first batch.
 

generic808

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And that's why the 6P is such a classic! You can just buy cheapy drop-in's until one suits exactly what you're looking for.
 

MikeSalt

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And that's why the 6P is such a classic! You can just buy cheapy drop-in's until one suits exactly what you're looking for.

Second that with the Lummi Raw Al/NS/Ti. The 'light engine' is very, very easy to swap out, so tint variations can be catered for, as well as keeping up with the latest emitters. The bare PCB (to mount your choice of emitter) is £10($20) or £13($26) for a pre-mounted version.
 

[email protected]

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I hear you on the whole tint Vs. performance/price factor... sadly I can't even go on a simple 'shopping expedition' without passing the torch/flashlight sections and evaluating each and every one based on an evolved criteria (and modding potential), something that is painfully obvious to my wife ROTFLMAO :crackup::shakehead


I currently use the earlier version of the TerraLux variant for a 3D Maglite, I must say I really like the Arctic white hue of it's SSC U-bin P4 but can understand why Maglite opted for the Luxeon III (I have both) for their own drop ins (the output is yellow by comparison and closer to incandescent) :candle:


I can't justify pulling the :paypal: trigger on a Surefire product as performance-per-dollar just doesn't quite reach for me personally speaking, I can build/modify something with more-than-satisfactory performance (without brand name hype) for considerably less, especially considering the recent P7 release :D
 
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Hitthespot

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Yes, absolutely.

So far, the only non-custom LED lights that seem to have predictably warm tints are the new Inova MP tactical series with the Luxeon K2 TFFC. And only time will tell whether this consistency is truly a characteristic of the K2 TFFC emitter, or just a good first batch.

I will second that. I have played with a number of the new Inova lights and purchased the T4. They are very warm and all of them seemed about equal in the tint department with only very slight variations. Colors appear very accurate in my opinion with the new lights.

Bill
 

Hooked on Fenix

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I'm not buying any more LEDs until more start to come in a neutral white color temperature -- that is, emitters in the 3500-4500k range -- with at least the same efficiency as the ones out now. I will probably retrofit most of my current LEDs, as well. Most current LEDs are about 6000k (cool white).
Most incan flashlights run about 3000K. I want something dead in the middle, with nice spectrum, and until then, no more LEDs.

Try the Cree XR-C l.e.d.s. Coleman has come out with some reasonably priced lights with these. They have a more neutral/slightly warm white tint compared to cooler white XR-E's. You loose some efficiency compared to the XR-E but gain better tint and color rendition. It's the same with the TFFC K2's. XR-E's are generally cooler white, XR-C's are about neutral white, and TFFC K2's are warm white. You can also spend a fortune and buy one of the lights that hand picks l.e.d.s for tint and efficiency. They'll tell you the color tint bin and you can choose your favorite one between these lights.
 

2xTrinity

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Try the Cree XR-C l.e.d.s. Coleman has come out with some reasonably priced lights with these. They have a more neutral/slightly warm white tint compared to cooler white XR-E's. You loose some efficiency compared to the XR-E but gain better tint and color rendition. It's the same with the TFFC K2's. XR-E's are generally cooler white, XR-C's are about neutral white, and TFFC K2's are warm white. You can also spend a fortune and buy one of the lights that hand picks l.e.d.s for tint and efficiency. They'll tell you the color tint bin and you can choose your favorite one between these lights.
There is no inherent reason why I should have to give up efficiency to get a neutral spectrum. If anything, the neutral spectrum lights should have higher efficiency, as our eyes have much greater sensitivity to yellow/green light than blue light. A light at 3500k therefore will have a much higher theoretical lumens/watt limit than one at 6500k, inherently. It's just a matter of the phosphor deposition processes improving before that becomes reality.

Cree actually makes XR-Es in warm and cool whie, it's just that they aren't popular enough for people on CPF to have done group buys for them, or DX to buy them in bulk and sell there cheap. There are actually some vendors selling XR-Es at 3500K in Q2 efficiency, higher than any XR-C's, but they're still prohibitively expensive.

Within the next year though, as production of warm and neutral LEDs increases in order to cater to genreal lighting markets, I'm sure we will see Q5 bin and greater neutral and warm emitters at a reasonable price.
 

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