Looking for an 1xAA EDC

Redemption

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Hi everyone,

Hopefully someone can recommend me a light that I hadn't thought of or found yet. I'm looking for a specific 1xAA format LED light with the following:


  1. Narrow body, preferably the head isn't huge compared to the body. I have an Nitecore MT10A which I love but the 1" head is too wide.
  2. lightweight, prefer below 45g w/o battery.
  3. Must have a deep carry clip.
  4. No parasitic drain (lockout not good enough, so prefer a tailswitch or twisty head)
  5. Prefer no accidental activations in pocket.
  6. At least 120Lm in High/Turbo mode, more is better :)
  7. High quality anodization, doesn't chip or scratch easily
  8. Reliability is important, I don't want the light to stop working after being dropped. I'm not a DIY type who can fix the light myself.
  9. Tail standing is nice and preferred.
  10. Large hotspot that blends into large spill. I prefer more flood. If you've seen the beam from the Nitecore MT10A that's perfect.
  11. CW or NW is ok, but no crazy cool white tints.
  12. Lowest mode should be 1-3Lm or less. This rules out Fenix.
  13. Prefer to be able to reach lowest mode from OFF. Reaching Turbo from OFF is not important to me.
  14. Prefer mode memory (not the kind that disappears after 3 seconds).

I really love my MT10A, it ticks every box above except it is heavyish and really quite bulky for a 1xAA light. It feels just too bulky to slip in my jeans front pocket and swings around as I walk if I throw it in a cargo pants pocket.
 

troutpool

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You might consider the Malkoff MDC, which comes in 1xAA format as well as 1xCR123.
 

parametrek

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Seconding the T10 XP-L in neutral white. Great little light. The mode spacing is a little agressive but I've never had a moment where one of the modes wasn't right for the situation at hand.
 

Repsol600rr

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Zebralight sc52w hits everything except parasitic drain which it has but is negligible and mode memory but because of the simple(with a couple minutes practice) ui it doesn't need it imo.
 

Redemption

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Wow thanks for all the fantastic responses, I really appreciate it! The Thrunite T10 appears to tick all boxes, although it does have weird spacing as parametrek says. I'm definitely going to check it out.

Just wanted to give some feedback and consideration on the other suggestions in case others will look into this later on with the same considerations I had.

Olight S1A: This has been on my shortlist. I don't have a local dealer where I can physically check it out. I wonder how easy it is to accidentally activate the side button. Otherwise it looks fantastic and I especially like the idea of the magnetic tailcap. Selfbuilt measured parasitic drain as negligible (<0.1uA) on the S15A so I think the S1A might be similar).

Zebralight sc52w: This was on my shortlist too, but it's got a 23.6mm head which is only slightly smaller than the Nitecore MT10A (25.4mm). If I could get my hands on one to try that might be interesting. I do like the idea of its programmable levels. selfbuilt measured parasitic drain as negligible on this light.

EagleTac D25A Clicky: Do you find the UI kind of weird? Every time I gravitate towards Eagletac the UI scares me away.

Malkoff MDC: Wow thanks for bringing this up. I didn't have this on my spreadsheet yet. It's head is the same size as the MT10A so it's still big for me. Do you happen to have one and know it's weight without battery? Others might also want to consider this is one of the most expensive AA light of the bunch.

Manker E11: Honestly this is possibly one of the best AA lights. Just based on the few reviews I've been checking. Unfortunately it has a side button and I haven't seen any parasitic drain measurements. I'm very much going to keep an eye on Manker from here on out.
 
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ven

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Another vote for the T10, or T10s/T10t if you want a little more exotic . The NW is a nice tint..............
 

Repsol600rr

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FWIW far as I can tell these days lights from quality makes like some of these suggested should have parasitic drains lower than the self discharge of the battery. Unless you are planning on storing it with a primary battery for a decade + it shouldn't matter. For ordinary edc purposes it doesn't make any difference imo.
Edit: I want a t10t in nw now.
 
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Redemption

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FWIW far as I can tell these days lights from quality makes like some of these suggested should have parasitic drains lower than the self discharge of the battery. Unless you are planning on storing it with a primary battery for a decade + it shouldn't matter. For ordinary edc purposes it doesn't make any difference imo.
Edit: I want a t10t in nw now.

You're right, thanks for this important reminder. Selfbuilt found the Zebralight sc52 as having negligible drain and an older review of the Olight S15 found <1uA of drain so it basically lasts forever. I edited my post to remove concerns of parasitic drain for these two flashlights.

But I do recall based on reviews not all modern flashlights are built equally for drain, and the higher drain ones can drain batteries within months (say 8-14 months) and not years. Whether that's a practical problem on an EDC I think its an efficiency problem and we should hold manufacturers to better standards since it does look like many can do it.
 

ronniepudding

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The Thrunite T10 appears to tick all boxes, although it does have weird spacing as parametrek says.
...
EagleTac D25A Clicky: Do you find the UI kind of weird? Every time I gravitate towards Eagletac the UI scares me away.
...

The D25A UI isn't all that different in practice than that of the Thrunite T10. The main differences are:

1) The Eagletac has one additional constant output mode. With the head slightly loosened (mode group 1) you get Low-Med-High, and you get to Max by tightening the head (mode group 2). This is an old-school UI, and very intuitive for me personally. The Thrunite has only 3 modes, and definitely seems simpler in the UI dept.
2) The Thrunite has mode memory, and the Eagletac does not. I believe you stated a preference for it... personally, I'm glad that the D25A doesn't work that way, because I know with the head tightened I'll get Max when I turn it on, and with the head loosened I know I'll get low.
3) The Eagletac has lots of strobe and beacon modes, but they are hidden (somewhat). TMK, the Thrunite has no flashing modes, which is something in its favor IMHO.
4) Moonlight mode on the Eagletac can be toggled on or off by loosening and tightening the head three times quickly. This serves to slightly dim or brighten the lowest two modes in mode group 1... so that you end up with two possible sets of outputs:
A) EagleTac D25A Clicky, XP-G2 ANSI specs, Moonlight ON: Low = 0.5, Med = 12, High = 85, Max/Turbo = 136
B) EagleTac D25A Clicky, XP-G2 ANSI specs, Moonlight OFF: Low = 4, Med = 20, High = 85, Max/Turbo = 136

Thrunite's specs for the XP-L T10 are:
-Firefly (0.2 lumens /240 hours),

-Low (13 lumens /40 hours),
-High (252 lumens /1.5 hours).

I've no idea if Thrunite's High rating is accurate (ANSI, out-the-front lumens), but given their history I'd imagine it's not too far off. And speaking of high output, the Thrunite certainly seems to have the Eagletac beat.

In any case, both lights have pros and cons in terms of the available brightnesses. Personally, I think the Thrunite really needs a Medium mode added somewhere between 13 and 252 lumens. On the other hand, the EagleTac UI makes it difficult to use both the Low=0.5 lumens AND Low=4 lumens modes -- or the Med=12 lumens AND Med=20 lumens modes -- because those outputs are separated by a triple-head-twist dance to toggle Moonlight on or off.

Having said all that, I'll repeat that the Eagletac UI shouldn't be seen as "scary" in practice, because (for me, anyway) Moonlight on/off generally stays in one setting or another depending upon your preference, and I find that I rarely change it.
 
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Redemption

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@ronniepudding - I like the way you describe the UI of the D25A clicky. The way I read it on the Eagletac pages sounds far more intimidating (and frankly, almost unusable). Thinking about it more like toggling Turbo is much more sane.
 

hyperloop

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For the tint I like ArmyTek Prime A1 (pro or non pro is up to you), for size and sheer power, I like the Manker T01, I only wish it came in neutral white but i can hope.

The Manker T01 is (or was) available on dazed1's thread, you can ask him about the Manker T01 and see how that goes.

Alas, these are both side switches but with the Manker it's actually better cos of it's size, I don't think a rear clicky would lend itself to being held comfortably.
 

AB8XL

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The D25A UI isn't all that different in practice than that of the Thrunite T10. The main differences are:

1) The Eagletac has one additional constant output mode. With the head slightly loosened (mode group 1) you get Low-Med-High, and you get to Max by tightening the head (mode group 2). This is an old-school UI, and very intuitive for me personally. The Thrunite has only 3 modes, and definitely seems simpler in the UI dept.
2) The Thrunite has mode memory, and the Eagletac does not. I believe you stated a preference for it... personally, I'm glad that the D25A doesn't work that way, because I know with the head tightened I'll get Max when I turn it on, and with the head loosened I know I'll get low.
3) The Eagletac has lots of strobe and beacon modes, but they are hidden (somewhat). TMK, the Thrunite has no flashing modes, which is something in its favor IMHO.
4) Moonlight mode on the Eagletac can be toggled on or off by loosening and tightening the head three times quickly. This serves to slightly dim or brighten the lowest two modes in mode group 1... so that you end up with two possible sets of outputs:
A) EagleTac D25A Clicky, XP-G2 ANSI specs, Moonlight ON: Low = 0.5, Med = 12, High = 85, Max/Turbo = 136
B) EagleTac D25A Clicky, XP-G2 ANSI specs, Moonlight OFF: Low = 4, Med = 20, High = 85, Max/Turbo = 136

Thrunite's specs for the XP-L T10 are:
-Firefly (0.2 lumens /240 hours),

-Low (13 lumens /40 hours),
-High (252 lumens /1.5 hours).

I've no idea if Thrunite's High rating is accurate (ANSI, out-the-front lumens), but given their history I'd imagine it's not too far off. And speaking of high output, the Thrunite certainly seems to have the Eagletac beat.

In any case, both lights have pros and cons in terms of the available brightnesses. Personally, I think the Thrunite really needs a Medium mode added somewhere between 13 and 252 lumens. On the other hand, the EagleTac UI makes it difficult to use both the Low=0.5 lumens AND Low=4 lumens modes -- or the Med=12 lumens AND Med=20 lumens modes -- because those outputs are separated by a triple-head-twist dance to toggle Moonlight on or off.

Having said all that, I'll repeat that the Eagletac UI shouldn't be seen as "scary" in practice, because (for me, anyway) Moonlight on/off generally stays in one setting or another depending upon your preference, and I find that I rarely change it.



That's an awesome description of the D25A Clicky's modes, all these years I had no idea there was a moon light mode available.
 

Paul Baldwin

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The S1a gets my vote. I've been using mine for a few weeks now. It's an EDC on a keyring that's always in my pocket. Zero accidental switch-ons so far and can be locked out anyway. Anodising is very good. Large hotspot which is good for close-up jobs at work with a white not cold blue tint. High output IF you need it. Very low if you don't and inbetween options too. Magnet is usefull. Good UI imo too.

Not a lot not to like really!
 

ronniepudding

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@ronniepudding - I like the way you describe the UI of the D25A clicky. The way I read it on the Eagletac pages sounds far more intimidating (and frankly, almost unusable). Thinking about it more like toggling Turbo is much more sane.

Thanks, Redemption! Indeed, EagleTac doesn't do an especially good job of selling their UI on their web site... I think the UI design is to some extent trying to make everyone happy, and they consequently aren't doing a perfect job of it and may be scaring some people off.

The way I use my D25A 95% of the time is with the head loosened, and in that configuration it works just like the Thrunite. The only difference being if you cycle through all the constant modes two times (with half-presses, without shutting the light off), you'll get to the blinky modes. I have no use for the strobes/beacons, and they are hidden well enough that I (almost) never get to them accidentally.

I will occasionally tighten the head for Turbo when I'm looking for a little more throw, but honestly there's not much of a discernible difference between 85 lumens and 136 lumens to my eye, the 85 lumen output is sufficient for most for up close uses, and I prefer to preserve battery life. In the end, this is not an especially bright or throwy light on ordinary low-voltage AA cells -- but if you run it on a li-ion 14500 battery, I believe you can get some impressive output from a D25A clicky, especially given its minuscule size.
 
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ronniepudding

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That's an awesome description of the D25A Clicky's modes, all these years I had no idea there was a moon light mode available.

Thanks! I'm glad it was helpful :)

I prefer to run my D25A clicky with Moonlight ON because when Moonlight is OFF I notice mild preflash on the Low=4 lumen mode. The preflash is for some reason absent on the Low=0.5 lumen mode; I've found this to be true across multiple samples.

That, and I do use the Moonlight output frequently.

Nevertheless, I think the mode spacing is better with Moonlight OFF. Visually IMHO it's sort of a big jump between 0.5 and 12 lumens. I'd really prefer the mode spacing to have been something like this:

A) Moonlight ON: Low = 0.5, Med = 4, High = 20, .................Max/Turbo = 136
B) Moonlight OFF: ................Low = 4, Med = 20, High = 85, Max/Turbo = 136
 
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