Newby with a question on headlamps

Mitch78

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Mar 24, 2023
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Ohio
Hey fellas,have a couple ?'s.

So... I've kind of been a flashlight geek for as long as I can remember but I'm just now finding out about this forum and the fact that people are modding flashlights and just doing some of the bad *** s*** you all are doing. Up until now I've always thought I was stuck with what I could find on the interwebs.

For the last few years every year in the spring for three or four months I search for some big mud leeches here in Ohio where I live, doing so I need a lot of lumens to last me most of the night, I've been using a fenix HM65 for the last couple years and it works really good as far as the beam being what I need, I basically use the spot on turbo and the flood on turbo so the full 1400 lumens all the time. I got about 3 hours out of the factory Phoenix battery and then I have about 10 backup 18650s that I carry with me of a lesser value brand that work pretty decent.

Few days ago I ended up ordering the ace beam h30 headlamp and got to use it for the first time a couple nights ago and the upgrade on lumens is great but obviously running it on high I only get a couple hours out of the original battery and don't have any backup batteries yet for the 21700, it was looking for new batteries for this light that I ended up finding this place and figuring out that you guys were doing mods.

So my question is what can be done for the Ace beam h30 to get Max lumens to run at the longest amount of time possible and what do you guys recommend for backup batteries? I read a little about the Samsung 40T possibly being a good backup battery at a better price than buying the full factory Acebeam replacements?

I'll post a couple of pics of my older fenix lights collection,and the two new Acebeam lights I just received. I welcome your alls criticism and recommendations as I am not nearly as educated as I thought I was on flashlights. Just reading some stuff in this forum the last couple nights has blown my mind on how much I don't know and how much more advanced the flashlight scene is, then I ever thought...
 

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alpg88

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We are not performing miracles here, if we bump the output, we shorten runtimes, if we increase the runtime we lower output. but to answer your question, to get the most you need an efficient driver. the most efficient drivers come with zebra light lights, they are called boost buck. unfortunately there are not many such drivers sold separately. especially that will fit a particular light, every manufacturer makes their own with few exceptions. Your best course of action is to get a zebra light headlamp, as of today there is nothing more efficient, afaik.
As far as backup batteries, samsung, lg, panasonic, sanyo, sony are the ones you want to get, pretty much all batteries that come with lights and have their brand on them are just rewrapped cells from those manufacturers, that sometimes have usb charging circuit installed. and cost more than what you can get original cells for. flashlight manufacturers so not make their own batteries.
 

3L3M3NT

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Welcome to CPF. :lovecpf: I'm sure you'll discover it's a great place to figure out what your next light will be or what upgrades are possible, and anything else you can think of that's flashlight/headlamp related.

To answer your question, you could send your H30 to Vinh and have him modify it to better suit your needs.
https://skylumen.com/products/acebeam-h30vn-best-single-21700-headlamp-r?_pos=2&_sid=744675d7e&_ss=r
Here's the 21700 battery he recommends for it.
https://skylumen.com/collections/juice/products/vapcell-p50-21700-5000mah-unprotected

The only other option that he offers is an Olight Perun 2.
https://skylumen.com/products/oligh...21700-headlamp-r?_pos=11&_sid=744675d7e&_ss=r
The disadvantage to this headlamp is that it requires Olights' proprietary 21700 battery and it costs considerably more than most of the 21700 batteries out there. https://skylumen.com/products/olight-5000mah-21700

Good luck and hope you figure something out.
 

kerneldrop

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the most efficient drivers come with zebra light lights, they are called boost buck.

I've never seen Zebralight's efficiency quantified into runtime. Do we know what kind of extended runtimes we gain from ZL's perceived efficiencies? Usually I just see a post talking about a massive runtime on like .08 lumens.
 

sirpetr

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We are not performing miracles here, if we bump the output, we shorten runtimes, if we increase the runtime we lower output. but to answer your question, to get the most you need an efficient driver. the most efficient drivers come with zebra light lights, they are called boost buck. unfortunately there are not many such drivers sold separately. especially that will fit a particular light, every manufacturer makes their own with few exceptions.
Thats not true! Generally most efficient driver is buck. Then boost. Then buck&boost. Search through datasheets and application notes. I mean all synchronous = without a diode. Its beacuse buck has simpler topology, smaller components and because current flows through the coil less. See Buck converter and Boost converter ON/OFF switching phases on wikipedia to find what is different. Also try searching on google phrase: buck boost comparison efficiency

Buck&boost is usually cascaded buck and boost so their losses are multiplied so its the least efficient from these three topologies.

IMHO its not too much important whether its buck or boost, both can achieve high efficiencies if they are properly built.

Your best course of action is to get a zebra light headlamp, as of today there is nothing more efficient, afaik.
How many Zebralight drivers have you measured? Very brave to say that. Bellow is link from budgetlight, Freeman measured few zebralight and other drivers.

Freeman writes in one post:
Zebralight gets often parroted as "very efficient" but that depends on the model, the SC64 (XHP35) is not that good, and the H/SC53 is very bad (it's an AA light though, it's bound to be less efficient), the SC700 is excellent.

Detailed measurements:
https://budgetlightforum.com/t/efficiency-measurements-of-a-few-drivers/68528

Just to give you another point of view - for our headlamps I design our own drivers (synchronous buck or synchronous boost) from discrete components with efficiencies reaching 98%, all of our models are in most operating conditions high above 90%. Measured with high quality instruments, confirmed by runtimes and customers. Therefore I think we are better. Also seen Noctigon driver numbers and they are great too. Probably some other manufacturers like Lux-RC, Lupine would be also excellent. Nowadays these "old" truths do not work, there are more manufacturers.
 
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alpg88

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Thats not true! Generally most efficient driver is buck.
Lol, sure, how many 1 cell lights with a buck drivers do you know? how long will it run before it runs out of overhead voltage? for longest runtime with 1 cell boost buck is the best for ~3v leds
It is true that with 6 or 12v leds, boost is the only way to go using 1 cell. so there isn't any choice here, but for 3v leds you got few options, and boost buck will give you the most runtime.
 

3_gun

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Jun 27, 2021
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Spot & flood on turbo at 1400L for 3 hours on one 18650? Why am I the 1st to notice this claim? It's not going to happen. From a zeroair review ; Measured Lumens (at 30s) 974 (69.4% of claim)
fenix_hm65r_headlamp_53.jpg

The light will run while charging at Med spot OR flood but at 130L, so you could use a 20k/mah battery pack to run the thing all week at those levels. Fenix claims over 30hrs for either spot or flood on the standard battery so this may not be the answer he needs.

Even on high with both running the max lumens is just over 400 & it drops steadily during the first 2hrs or so to about 50L for 10 more hours.

I don't know of a light that will do what he claims (1400L for 3hrs) much less improve on those claims, at least not in a headlamp format
 

sirpetr

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Lol, sure, how many 1 cell lights with a buck drivers do you know? how long will it run before it runs out of overhead voltage? for longest runtime with 1 cell boost buck is the best for ~3v leds
It is true that with 6 or 12v leds, boost is the only way to go using 1 cell. so there isn't any choice here, but for 3v leds you got few options, and boost buck will give you the most runtime.
We have few headlamps using buck converter in 1 LED and 1 battery configuration. You would be suprised how good it is. Also we have buck converter with 2LEDs and 2S battery. Also working very efficiently. Maybe its not common in L-shaped headlamps but possible.

First benefit boost (or buck/boost) has in 1battery configuration is that you have longest runtime on maximum mode. Second benefit, when you use 6V or 12V leds in 1 battery configuration, you must use boost to make it work. Thats true but that doesnt mean buck/boost are most efficient you wrote in your post.
 

alpg88

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We have few headlamps using buck converter in 1 LED and 1 battery configuration. You would be suprised how good it is.
It would be even better if it had a boost mode. but in any case you should point op to where to get those magic drivers, after all it is him who is asking for an advice, not me.
 

kerneldrop

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I would still like to quantify the efficiencies gained.
Does ZL efficiency give me 2 mins of increase run time, or 20 hours?

I deal with efficiency debates in exterior ballistics all the time but it's easy to quantify and/or debunk.
I think a lot of hard users talk about Zebra light efficiencies without factoring in the lumen(s) output.
 

sirpetr

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I would still like to quantify the efficiencies gained.
Does ZL efficiency give me 2 mins of increase run time, or 20 hours?

I deal with efficiency debates in exterior ballistics all the time but it's easy to quantify and/or debunk.
I think a lot of hard users talk about Zebra light efficiencies without factoring in the lumen(s) output.

If you compare two same lights just with different drivers, first one having in average 90% efficiency, the latter one 95% efficient, then the latter have 5% more runtime = if first light has runtime of 3 hours, the latter have 3h09 minutes. When 85% and 95% case, its 3h18min.

But not only driver makes the difference. LEDs and optical design could together make much larger difference, even 30%. Small difference can be made also by using better thermal design (better cooling), so LED operates at lower temperature producing more lumens. Also because you need lower current from battery, you gain from it another 1-3% more capacity. In the end runtime can be 4h instead of 3h.
 

Hooked on Fenix

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If you can use unprotected cells for 21700s, I recommend Samsung 50S (5 amp, 25 amp discharge rated) for high capacity or Molicel P45B (4.5 amp, 45 amp discharge rated) for high current and low temperatures. For protected cells, I usually get 15 amp rated cells by Klarus or Nitecore.
 

yellow

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You seem to still be in level 3-4 of flashlight crazy
(No longer "the biggest light possible - thats level 2) ;)
but not gone much further ...
;)
The next step were to reduce the sheer power "needed" (for something else, like tint, or size, or ...)


I am wondering what to do with a headlamp! to need full output all the time.
Dont You blind Yourself with the light source this near at eyes and "workplace"?

If a less powerful mode also would be enough, Your runtime " problem" would be solved instantly
:)
 

alpg88

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Some jobs require lots of light, some like lots of light while doing their work. for outdoor work 1000-1500 lm is pretty much the minimum, imo. This is the thing i do not like about forums such as this one, when someone asks for an advice, about 2 people will give useful advice, 12 will try to tell you doing it wrong and should rethink your life, lol and other 12 will argue with those 2 saying they are wrong while giving 0 useful advice to the original question, i have to admit i'm guilty of such behaviours too sometimes.
 

yellow

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Soooo,
what is YOUR actual recommendation for Mitch, then?
:)

Another idea: check headlamps for miners.
They depend daily, in an ultra hardcore job, in ultra hardcore environment, during long hour shifts, on seeing everything, on their lights.

I wonder what the outcome might be?
:D
(well, having no clue at all on miners headlamps, i still pretty much am certain of the "outcome")
;)
 

NightTime

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Dec 3, 2008
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Have a look at headlamps that has onboard charging. You could have a Powerbank on your belt and charge the light while using it. Olight Perun 2 mentionned above is a good choice. Or maybe check the Skilhunt H300R V3. Make sure to ask someone if you can use the light while charging. I would choose the Skilhunt H300R V3 over the Olight Perun 2 because you can use your own 18650. Also, you have different color temperature options (cool white/Neutral White).

Olight Perun 2


Skilhunt H300R V3
 

sirpetr

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So my question is what can be done for the Ace beam h30 to get Max lumens to run at the longest amount of time possible and what do you guys recommend for backup batteries? I read a little about the Samsung 40T possibly being a good backup battery at a better price than buying the full factory Acebeam replacements?
Already answered, use any quality brand with true 5000mAh capacity (search reviews & discharge graphs). I like Keeppower brand but there are some other also fine and inexpensive brands.

However as 3_gun pointed out your previous Fenix is not regulated all the time, in fact most of the time you had just 300 lumens. Use your acebeam in mode High and you got constant 1100lm for nearly 3 hours. Buy few 5000mAh as spares and its done.
 
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