L3 Illumination L08 (XP-G2 R5 or Nichia 219, 1xAAA) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMS, VIDEO+

WalkIntoTheLight

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How hard do you have to twist to "crush" the battery? I have an L10 that I use with an Eneloop, and I've never noticed any damage to the battery. Do you mean a really hard twist, like you're taking the lid off a jar? Or can it be damaged from normal use? I also have a Preon P0 that uses the same design, and haven't noticed any battery damage from it either. Neither lights see much use, so does it only occur over time and a lot of usage?
 

reppans

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Yeah, I wouldn't call the L10 a battery crusher. The foam pad makes it feel cheap and less durable than a spring, but you only need to twist it down just enough to make electrical contact. Now the Peak QTC lights really do feel like battery crushers ;)
 

WalkIntoTheLight

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Considering the regulation and runtime of the L08 AAA on high, could this shorten the lifespan of the NiMh battery?
Yes, that is exactly the problem here. As long as you discharge a battery within its max safe discharge rate (which is 2C for NiMH - i.e., fully discharged in 30 mins), you should be fine. But as you can see my L08 samples seem to be exceeding that rate on standard 800mAh eneloops. That is not a good idea for the long-term health of your cells.

There's a good test of this for Eneloop cells here:
http://www.candlepowerforums.com/vb...st-Generation-Vs-4th-Generation-Cycle-Testing

In summary, this guy torture-tested AA Eneloops to see how many cycles they get. The generation 1 cells got about 300 cycles (instead of 1000), and the generation 4 got about 600 or 700 cycles (instead of 2100). So while it's a lot less than the gentle usage that will get you the full 2100 cycles, it's still several hundred cycles if you abuse them. That's likely many years worth. I wouldn't worry about it.
 

leon2245

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There is a three mode version right? Anyone know off hand who has it in stock, I'm only finding the 4 mode after quick search.



How hard do you have to twist to "crush" the battery? I have an L10 that I use with an Eneloop, and I've never noticed any damage to the battery. Do you mean a really hard twist, like you're taking the lid off a jar? Or can it be damaged from normal use? I also have a Preon P0 that uses the same design, and haven't noticed any battery damage from it either. Neither lights see much use, so does it only occur over time and a lot of usage?

Probably too hard to worry about too much- I think all sb said was that a spring reduces the risk, not that it's going to happen without. It's just the superior design choice vs. foam imo, and one I've been spoiled by already in a few (even <$20) twisties that managed springs to want to take a step back here. One of those preferences whose box wasn't checked with the L10, that L3 Illumination decided to upgrade in the L08, & i like it.
 

LG&M

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I have not been around much, glad to see your reviews are as good as ever.
Thanks for all the work you do.
 

liquidrazer

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ive been a luker on CPF for some time and recently joined.

Dear selfbuilt, i have a love/hate relationship with you. your light reviews are nicely detailed and to the point. (fyi i am buying an l10 model as we speak because of this review.) i love you for your detication for the reviews but hate you for making me buy more light! the reason ive been on the site so much lately is that i had a foursevens mini ml on my keychain, but it recently died. =,( (hopefully foursevens can replace/repair). good news is, i think i found a replacement. bad news is i WANT MORE LIGHTS! but who am i kidding, i cant hate you! I LOVE U! thanks for all the hard work and reviews!
 

chorlton

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Why would someone choose this over the L10?

It has a spring contact instead of a foam doughnut, it is the best throwing light in aaa format, the only aaa with decent optics and a good range of outputs to use a nichia 219. For all these reasons I can forgive its size and it will still sit better in my watch pocket than the L10. Have ordered natural 4 mode nichia 219 from SB flashlights.... should be here soon...
 

ronniepudding

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... that is exactly the problem here. As long as you discharge a battery within its max safe discharge rate (which is 2C for NiMH - i.e., fully discharged in 30 mins), you should be fine. But as you can see my L08 samples seem to be exceeding that rate on standard 800mAh eneloops. That is not a good idea for the long-term health of your cells.

I've noticed that the max output on the L08 has recently been reduced to 90 lumens. When I enquired with the manufacturer, they replied that this was done to improve runtimes on high. It also likely resolves the concerns of excessive battery discharge rate at 130-140 lumens. I realize this driver change doesn't make the light more appealing to those objecting to size/weight when compared to the L10 twisty, -- but for those who like the design of the L08 better, it does address the other main issue raised by Selfbuilt's review.
 

selfbuilt

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I've noticed that the max output on the L08 has recently been reduced to 90 lumens. When I enquired with the manufacturer, they replied that this was done to improve runtimes on high. It also likely resolves the concerns of excessive battery discharge rate at 130-140 lumens. I realize this driver change doesn't make the light more appealing to those objecting to size/weight when compared to the L10 twisty, -- but for those who like the design of the L08 better, it does address the other main issue raised by Selfbuilt's review.
That's good to know - thanks for sharing the update! :wave:
 

jon_slider

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Thanks for the great reviews selfbuilt
question about the excessive discharge rate, does partial discharge cause risk of shortened battery life, or only running the battery all the way dead on max output?

I've noticed that the max output on the L08 has recently been reduced to 90 lumens.
I just received an L08. I really doubt the max output mode has been reduced on mine. Its WAAAY brighter than my other 85 lumen lights, and much closer to my 152 lumen Thrunite Ti. Have not measured the lumens, just compared beams on my kitchen ceiling.

I love the L08 for not having PWM, my First Impressions L3 Illumination L08 AAA N219B ...
 

selfbuilt

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question about the excessive discharge rate, does partial discharge cause risk of shortened battery life, or only running the battery all the way dead on max output?
You would have to check with the battery experts in the batteries/electronics sub-forum here. But I would think any period of time exceeding 2C discharge on NiMH is not likely to be good for the cell. Not sure what the impact would be. I know for excessive discharge, regardless of rate (i.e., running the battery until it is dead) that this will damage the low-self-discharge characterisitics of eneloops (i.e., they won't hold a charge as long as afterwards), but it doesn't affect max storage capacity.
 

ronniepudding

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I just received an L08. I really doubt the max output mode has been reduced on mine. Its WAAAY brighter than my other 85 lumen lights, and much closer to my 152 lumen Thrunite Ti. Have not measured the lumens, just compared beams on my kitchen ceiling.

You're using a NiMH AAA cell, right?

My post re: 90 lumens was in reaction to the spec for high mode output changing on the manufacturer's web site. I presumed that a circuit change had occurred, prompting the adjustment to the advertised spec. I emailed the manufacturer to inquire about this, and ... well, perhaps there was a misunderstanding due to my presumption.

In re-reading Selfbuilt's review just now, I came across this bit, which I didn't notice the first time:

"Another thing that is interesting to note is how much the output drops when run on standard alkaline or L92 AAA cells. For example, going from Eneloop to alkaline on Hi, my XP-G2 L08s drop from an ANSI FL-1 lumen estimate of 155 to 125 lumens, and my Nichia 219 L08 drops from 130 to 90 lumens. I had previously observed a small drop in output in my L10 testing (on the comparable AA battery sources), but the magnitude of the effect is much larger on the L08 with AAA cells."

So, the likely explanation is that I was mistaken regarding the reason for the spec change, and that it was simply an attempt to accurately represent performance on alkaline AAA cells, NOT an indication that max output had purposefully been changed/regulated on the L08. Sorry if my comment earlier misled anyone.
 

eh4

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Why would someone choose this over the L10?

I've just ordered two of the L08 Nichia 4 mode models to make into necklace lights.
I've got the system worked out with Thrunite Ti3 and I think the L08 will be a big improvement, especially with it having a proper low between firefly and med. With the Ti3 it's a pretty big jump.
I never cared about aaa lights before getting the Nitecore Atom CPF anniversary light. I got it for the Nichia219 flood and didn't even realize that I ordered an aaa light till too late.
Anyways the reason I've warmed to them is size and weight, particularly the smaller diameter of the battery tube.
I can put a few layers of plastic dip in the end without the tube diameter increasing much, this makes it very comfortable to bite like a cigar. The light weight, small diameter and plastic coating add up to being comfortable enough to use without any inconvenience or discomfort. Talking, if necessary is no trouble, I just sound a little more like a gangster, See?
So combine that with a comfortable cord tied to the light with a constrictor knot (I like the double constrictor) and it slips under my shirt and is forgotten about till needed.
The greater weight and diameter of the L10 was much less convenient for this use, and I noticed it hanging on my neck.
When the two L08 come in I'll grind the excess metal that forms the lanyard ring holes completely down to minimum length, then plastic dip, and form the base flat once the dip skins over.
2015-07-12%25252020.46.20.jpg


I've always got a bigger, better light in my pocket but this necklace configuration had been getting the most use by far. It's quick and easy to snag the cord with a finger and get the bite zone to my mouth rather than reaching for the light in my pocket, and then it's immediately hands free without messing with a clip or headband, then I drop the light and it hangs outside my shirt lighting up my lap or neutral work position if standing (say food prep or hand washing for instance). Then turn it off, back under the collar and I don't notice it till the next time I want light.
It goes through the shower just fine too.
As a system it's so handy that I've gotten over my dislike of aaa batteries in order to make use of it.
 
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eh4

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I want to point out too that when I've got glue, dirt, solvents or other unwholesome stuff on my hands, the last thing I want to do is grab a light, click the button and then put the contaminated thing in my mouth.
With the necklace system the light is protected under my shirt, and I don't ever have to touch the end that I bite, I can grab the light Through my shirt for that matter, as a glove. Just turn the bezel till the light is right. I'm not worried about any of my own cooties on my own skin afterall, I'm worried about chemicals and bugs on things that I have to handle.
Nothing is perfect but this is working really well
The only thing I need to do is now is heat weld the ends of the nylon cord instead of tieing it,
-so that the connection will break instead of hanging me if I got it snagged while falling off a ladder or whatnot.
Each battery is lasting for weeks, I swap and recharge them every weekor three.
The aaa eneloop are usually down to 50-25%,
 
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