Niwalker MiniMax Nova MM15 (2xMT-G2, 4x18650) Prototype Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS+

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selfbuilt

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Niwalker MiniMax Nova MM15 (2xMT-G2, 4x18650) Prototype #1 Review: RUNTIME, BEAMSHOT+

Warning: pic heavy, as usual. :whistle:

UPDATE FEBRUARY 11, 2014: This review has been superceded by a new review of a revised prototype, available here. Please go to the new review to continue discussion of this light.

Reviewer's note: This is a preliminary review of a prototype. The manufacturer is soliciting feedback from members here for the final design.
Welcome to the prototype review for the Niwalker MiniMax Nova MM15. :party:

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The MiniMax comes with two high-output MT-G2 emitters, and is powered by 4x18650. Given the design of the light, it is clearly intended as a flood light and not a throw light.

Specs are pretty minimal at present, but here is what I know from Niwalker:

Manufacturer Reported Specifications:
(note: as always, these are simply what the manufacturer provides – scroll down to see my actual testing results).

  • LED: 2x CREE MT-G2 Neutral White
  • Five brightness levels
  • Max output 5233 lumens
  • Uses 4x 18650 battery
  • MSRP: unknown
Like I said, not a lot is known yet. :rolleyes: So let's put this sample through its paces:

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From left to right: Eagletac Protected 18650 3400mAh; Niwalker MiniMax Nova MM15; Nitecore TM11; Eagletac SX25L3; Sunwayman T60CS; Niwalker BK-FA02.

All dimensions directly measured, and given with no batteries installed (unless indicated):

MiniMax Nova MM15: Weight: 268.3g (452g with 4x18650), Length: 114.0mm, Weight (bezel): 58.0mm
Eagletac SX25L3 3x18650: Weight: 315.9g, Length: 150.2mm, Weight (bezel): 47.0mm
Crelant 7G10: Weight 643.4g (827g with 4x18650), Length: 198mm, Width (bezel): 79.0mm
Fenix TK75: Weight: 516.0g (700g with 4x18650), Length: 184mm, Width (bezel): 87.5mm
Nitecore TM11: Weight: 342.6g (476g with 8xCR123A), Length 135.3mm, Width (bezel): 59.5mm
Nitecore TM15: Weight: 450.6g (634g with 4x18650). Length 158mm, Width (bezel): 59.5mm
Niwalker BK-FA01 (shipping): Weight: 687.6g (870g with 4x18650), Length: 209mm, Width (bezel): 80.0mm, Width (tailcap): 50.3mm

The MiniMax is the smallest 4x18650 light I've tested to date – compare it to Nitecore TM11 to get an idea. :eek:oo:

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I'll say it again – this is a remarkably tiny light!

I'll also remind everyone that this is an early engineering sample – the final shipping version could change significantly. In fact, that is the whole point of this preview – Niwalker is trying to gauge the market's response to this light.

Exterior styling is fairly minimal at present. There is no real knurling to speak of, but there are sufficient grip elements to help with grip. I would still think the light could be a bit slippery when wet. Anodizing is a black matte finish (presume to be HA). There was no labeling on my sample.

Thanks to the integrated battery carrier, there isn't much wasted space. That said, I do find the carrier to be a bit of tight fit for length – longer cells may require some force to get in. You would also want to be careful not to damage the exposed contact board. But again, final shipping design could be different.

As an aside, despite the appearance, the four 18650 cells are actually in series, not parallel (i.e., 4s1p). This means that a standby drain (due to the electronic switch) only comes into effect once the fourth cell is inserted into the carrier. But since the carrier is integrated into the head, there is no physical option to lock out the light. :shrug:

Note that as a result of the current design, the body's aluminum handle is actually a bit superfluous - you can run the light without it. It does have square-cut thread on my pre-release sample, but the anodizing was worn on the threads. Of course, that doesn't matter, since there is no current passing through the body). There was no lanyard attachment point either. Again, I observed the same thing with the Niwalker BKFA-series lights (these things came later, on the final shipping version).

Currently, there is an electronic switch in the head, with a "N" logo on it. Switch feel is about typical for an electronic switch. The N lights up green when in use. There seems to be a built-in circuit over-discharge protection feature on my sample, as the light shut-off and the N switched to red as the cells were nearing exhaustion. Scroll down for the user interface and performance results.

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There is also a tripod mount on the head, as well as small knob that didn't have any obvious function on my sample (all equi-distance with the electronic switch). I suspect this knob was used in assembly of the light. Again, pre-release engineering prototypes can be very different from final shipping versions – I wouldn't get too concerned about these sorts of items.

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The head is really distinctive here – with two MG-G2 emitters in relatively shallow reflector wells (heavily textured). As you would expect, this is very much a floody light. Scroll down for a beam pattern.

See my earlier Niwalker BK-FA02 and Eagletac SX25L3 reviews for a discussion of the MT-G2 emitter more generally.

User Interface

Turn the light on/off by the electronic switch. There is no momentary mode – once you release the switch, the light comes on in constant output.

The light always comes on in Hi mode first. Press and hold the switch to cycle through the lower modes (Moonlight > Lo > Med > Hi, in repeating sequence). Release the switch to select the desired level. Note that that you cannot restart the level ramp once you have selected a level this way – you would need to turn off and back on first. :shrug:

When on, double-click from any mode to access Turbo.

There is a "hidden" strobe mode - to access, do a triple click from on

And that's about it. :whistle: I will make some general recommendations for interface later in this review.

Video:

For more information on the overall build and user interface, please see my video overview:



Video was recorded in 720p, but YouTube typically defaults to 360p. Once the video is running, you can click on the configuration settings icon and select the higher 480p to 720p options. You can also run full-screen.

As with all my videos, I recommend you have annotations turned on. I commonly update the commentary with additional information or clarifications before publicly releasing the video.

PWM/Strobe

There is no sign of PWM that I can see, at any output level – I believe the light is current-controlled. :)

I did detect high frequency noise with my oscilloscope on some modes (Lo, Med and Hi), but not others (Moonlight, Turbo)

Hi/Med Noise:
MiniMax-HiNoise.gif

MiniMax-HiNoise2.gif


Lo Noise:
MiniMax-LoNoise.gif
]

The frequency was a consistent 14 kHz on Lo/Med/Hi, and it was absolutely not visible to the eye in actual use. The light is flicker-free in all modes. :wave:

Standby Drain

A standby current drain is inevitable on this light, due to the electronic. I have measured it on my prototype as 528uA initially, but it rapidly drops down over 30 secs or so to settle at 404uA. Given the serial cell arrangement (4s1p) would translate into a little over 10 and half months on 3100mAh 18650s.

Unfortunately, there is no physical lock-out available on my sample – the standby current is in place as soon as the last cell is connected into the integrated carrier. :shrug:

Beamshots:

And now, what you have all been waiting for. ;) All lights are on their standard battery, or AW protected 18650 2200mAh for the multi-18650 lights. Lights are about ~0.75 meter from a white wall (with the camera ~1.25 meters back from the wall).

Automatic white balance is used on most of my wall beamshots (to minimize tint differences), but in this case I went with a Daylight WB on my Canon for the MiniMax.

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Note: No matter what white balance I used, these comparisons will never be entirely accurate for tint. In real life, I find my MT-G2 lights all to be relatively neutral white.

On Turbo, the MiniMax has an unbelievable amount of output. Hard to directly compare, but my ceiling bounce results tell me that it actually slightly exceeds my Olight X6 (which is rated at 5000 lumens). :eek:oo:

For outdoor beamshots, these are all done in the style of my earlier 100-yard round-up review. Please see that thread for a discussion of the topography (i.e. the road dips in the distance, to better show you the corona in the mid-ground).

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Given that this location was picked to illustrate relative throw (which the MiniMax is not designed for), it doesn't really capture the overall brightness of this light.

But you can get a few hints of its relative brightness if you examine the far right end of the zoomed-out shots above (i.e., the tree line in the distance on the right). Depending on your monitor calibration, you may be able to faintly make the trees there (which are more than 100 yards away). You'll note how much hard it is to see these on the comparator SX25L3 or X6. :whistle:

To try and show this better, I've resorted to my interior basement shots. These will at least allow you to compare the throw and spill of the three lights. For your reference, the back of the couch is about 8 feet away (~2.4m) from the opening of the light, and the far wall is about 19 feet away (~6m). I am also showing a series of exposures, to allow you to better compare hotspot and spill.

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Subjectively, the MiniMax really does seem to be putting out at least as much light overall as the X6 – just with a completely different beam pattern (i.e., wide flood). As you can see in these indoor shots, the MiniMax has a much wider beam overall.

In that sense, I know people always found it hard to believe how well the X6 throws, but I think the combined beamshots above really tell a compelling story. The MiniMax is really a true flood light - it actually reminds me a lot of diffuser-equipped light. :thumbsup:

Testing Method:

All my output numbers are relative for my home-made light box setup, as described on my flashlightreviews.ca website. You can directly compare all my relative output values from different reviews - i.e. an output value of "10" in one graph is the same as "10" in another. All runtimes are done under a cooling fan, except for any extended run Lo/Min modes (i.e. >12 hours) which are done without cooling.

I have devised a method for converting my lightbox relative output values (ROV) to estimated Lumens. See my How to convert Selfbuilt's Lightbox values to Lumens thread for more info.

Throw/Output Summary Chart:

My summary tables are reported in a manner consistent with the ANSI FL-1 standard for flashlight testing. Please see http://www.flashlightreviews.ca/FL1.htm for a discussion, and a description of all the terms used in these tables. Effective July 2012, I have updated all my Peak Intensity/Beam Distance measures with a NIST-certified Extech EA31 lightmeter (orange highlights).

MiniMax-FL1-Summary.gif


Since my high-output lights don't fit in my lightbox, I am really relying on my ceiling bounce measures here. But the results match my subject experience – the MiniMax manages to squeeze out a few more lumens than my 5000-lumen rated Olight X6 (which was my previous output champ). :bow:

Throw is definitely pretty minimal, given the overall output of the MiniMax. As always, the MT-G2 produces a very smooth beam profile.

Let's see how the rest of the output levels compare:

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Again, take these with a bit grain salt, given my limited ability to measure output on these lights. But it gives you a general idea of spacing - which is a little peculiar, as there is nothing in-between 900 and 5200 lumens.

Output/Runtime Graphs:

Given that the MiniMax is actually the highest output light in my collection at the moment, let's start by comparing it to the big guns – on an estimated lumen output scale.

Minimax-SuperHiRuntime.gif


As you will see, this helps explain how such a tiny light could produce these kind of eye-popping outputs – it steps down to the <900 estimated lumens Hi level within 3.5 mins on Turbo. :sweat:

Note that you could re-start the light on Turbo again if you wanted … but it does indeed get pretty warm quickly if you try. :whistle:

Given this step down, let's compare the Hi/Med levels to the most typical 3x/4x18650 competition (in my relative lightbox output scale):

Minimax-HiRuntime.gif

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Output/runtime performance is pretty consistent with other MT-G2 lights in my collection. For comparable output, the MiniMax is showing a very similar "direct-drive" like pattern, with comparable runtime. Note of course that the MiniMax has two emitters instead of one, but that doesn't seem to be making a huge difference (again, these curves are based on total output over time).

Potential Issues

Given that this is a protoyype, I thought I would provide a more specific list of potential issues/features Niwalker may want to consider. Niwalker is soliciting feedback, so feel free to add your comments. :wave:

The default Hi level is plenty of light for me, but it is about the same as a modern 1x18650 light. Since the Turbo mode steps down to this level, I suspect most people would like to see something brighter here (e.g., maybe something in 1500-2000 lumens range?).

The user interface has some quirks. For one, the timings take some getting used to. Also, it's odd and that the output selection ramp always starts as the Moonlight level. Typically, it's better that the ramp start from whatever level you are in. And that's another quirk - you can't re-start the mode selection ramp after you have done it once - you need to turn the light off/on again first on my sample (and thus go back to Hi, then Moonlight through the ramp).

I would think mode memory would be a good idea, rather than starting in Hi. That said, I know many here will want a way to start in Turbo directly from off. In that sense, always starting in Hi is likely to satisfy no one - better to have mode memory, or always start in Turbo.

Some sort of lock-out mode is necessary, to prevent accidental activation. This is especially important since no physical lockout is possible in the current design (i.e., you need to remove a cell to break the standby current). The standby current is reasonable for this type of light, though.

I am impressed with how small the light is (although the integrated carrier was very tight for getting longer cells into). That said, the switch is hard to find by touch alone (i.e., the tripod point and the other raised disc are more prominent by touch). I would think having the tripod mount directly opposite the switch would be good. A wrist lanyard attschment point would be nice.

A standby/locator flash in the switch could be a good idea, since there is already an LED under there. But there would have to be a way to lock it out as well, for those who don't want to see it.

Preliminary Observations

Since this isn't a commercially available light yet, I think I will let the results and commentary above stand by themselves. :)

One general point that I will make is that the output really is unbelievably bright on Turbo (at least initially). :eek:oo: When I first activated it in my living room, the dog jumped off the couch and scampered off. :laughing:

It is remarkable to see about twice the max output, compared to other compact lights out there. And all that in a build that is the smallest 4x18650 I've ever seen. Of course, it can't keep that output up for long, and the present step-down level is about that of 1x18650 light on max.

Also, keep in mind that this is a true flood light. Its beam reminds more of a diffused light than a typical reflectored one. That makes it hard to provide beamshot comparisons, but I've done the best I can above. In practice, I believe the >5000 lumen claim.

As for the build and UI, I am sure these will change when we get to the final shipping versions. My experience with other prototypes that Niwalker has sent (for other models) strongly suggests this. I know they are looking for feedback, so fire away everyone! :wave:

UPDATE FEBRUARY 11, 2014: This review has been superceded by a new review of a revised prototype, available here. Please go to the new review to continue discussion of this light.

----

MiniMax prototype was provided by Niwalker for review.
 
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Knifefeak

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Cool light, I do agree that mode memory would be great and all around better interface is needed
 

don.gwapo

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Mode memory and knurling and its ready to go.

Niwalker, make this light NOW, ASAP so that we can put it in our stocking stuffer. :bow:.

Thanks for the review.
 

jfl

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Awesome light to carry around everywhere!! Niwalker, can we have the LEDs directly bonded to small copper heatsink, even if it costs a little more? Also, how about an additional light: 4 x mtg2 version with 8x18650?
 

selfbuilt

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Sorry, apparently there is a strobe mode - accessed by a triple click from on.

I am away right now, but will confirm when I am back home.
 

One missed call

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Great review; thanks.

Amazing little light. Hopefully it will come with a holster.

Lockout would also be great.

By the way, it is a shame they didn't employ a series/parallel battery arrangement so that you could run just one LED on 2 batteries say in an emergency (similar to S6330 parallel setup which I love).
 

Swede74

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It looks as though the light is driven very (excruciatingly?) hard on turbo. Perhaps Niwalker engineers have already erred on the side of caution, but since laymen's feedback is called for, here is some of mine. 5000+ lumens is a lot of light, and may be a good sales argument, but so is 4000-4500 lumens and if it would mean less strain on the cells, emitters and other components, plus longer runtime and longer time before automatic step-down, I would consider the reduced output a small price to pay for increased stability and peace of mind.
 

xed888

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I think it definitely needs a 2000 lumen level. They should call the 4500 lumens Burst mode instead of turbo. At least with the word 'Burst' we infer that it does not last for a long time. Perhaps a 10 min stepdown if possible?
 

InfinitusEquitas

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As always, thank you for a great review.

It seems Niwalker has certainly looked at the Zebralight S6330 before making this light. The dimensions, and overall design are extremely similar.

In it's current form this is not a practical light. Not even close to it, but it's nice to see Niwalker asking for suggestions.

1. Light starts on a ~900 lumen high. This is BAD. Why? Because if you're using a flashlight at night, and not just for fun, you may want to maintain your night vision.
-It would be nice if the light started off with a ramp from low instead.

2. Not enough modes. Going from 5000+ lumens to 900 is a huge drop.
-Add 3000, and 1500 lumens modes.

UI suggestion - Implement separate mode groups.

Group 1. - Normal everyday use.

-Press and hold button to start ramping from moonlight to low, to medium, to high.
-Click once to go into high mode.
-Holding the button once in any of the modes to start it ramping up, and cycling through moonlight, low, medium, high.

Group 2. - Maximum Area Illumination.

-Double click to go into the 5000 lumen turbo mode.
-From turbo the light should drop in output based on temperature (NOT TIMED!) but to intermediate levels. (Personally I find the difference between 5000 lumens, 3000, and 1500 to be very easily visually apparent.)
-While in turbo, press, and hold the button to cycle through the three modes.

Group 3. - Emergency modes.

-Triple click for strobe.
-Press and hold to cycle through Strobe, Beacon, SOS, and low power beacon.

It would be nice if there was mode memory as well, so every time you held the button, double clicked, or triple clicked it would go back to the mode you turned it off from, in that mode group.

Design Suggestions;

-Recess the main button. While it appears flush with the body of the light, it doesn't look like it would take much at all for accidental activation.

-Increase the size of the light slightly. This is already suggested, but the light should absolutely be able to accommodate all of the batteries currently on the market, up to 70mm in length. Since we're likely to see a 3600mAh batteries soon, even a bit more space could be needed. In terms of length no one will be bothered by a light being 1, or even 1.5cm longer. They will be extremely bothered if they cannot use the batteries the already own, or the newest batteries on the market.

-Increase the depth, and width of the reflectors. In it's current form the light is just too floody to be very practical. In effect a person using it say in the woods, would find themselves lighting up a very small area, but blinding themselves beyond ~100 meters completely. Again, 15mm more will not matter as much, as having just a bit more throw with the light. The beamshots illustrate this beautifully - the MM15 lights up the first row of trees wonderfully, but you can't even tell there are more trees beyond the first line, which is very visible with the marauder, and somewhat with the SX25L3. Which is also a flood light.

-Some cooling fins on the head would be nice, both for aesthetics, and to help with heat buildup.

-Offer a handle, AND a belt clip, where one part can be screwed into the light, and the other remains on the belt. This would put the often little used tripod mounting hole to good use.

-Make sure the LEDs are perfectly centered. On the production sample one of them is not. Yes it's a small small deviation, but if I pay $200+ for a flashlight I expect it to be perfect, and you can bet it's going back if it's not.

-Add a stainless steel bezel that can be twisted off, and replaced with color filters.

-Design a tactical rear switch battery compartment for the light - same interface as the primary button, but from a tailcap.

-Lower standby current.

-Add some kind of way to show approximate battery capacity.

Last, and biggest problem I have with this light is heat. I find even a single MTG2 driven to produce ~2500-3000 lumens makes a light too hot to hold within 3 minutes. (Speaking from personal experience with a modded SX25L3.) With two MTG2 emitters, you would probably need oven gloves after 2 minutes.

Frankly I don't know how this can be well addressed well in such a small light. The heat can only be managed somewhat, and that means not skimping on any materials. These LEDs have to be on copper, and preferably on a large chunk of copper in direct contact with the body. The light must also step down to lower levels on it's own, to prevent it from frying itself. The step down must be based on temperature, and must be at least somewhat gradual (not 5000 to 900).

I'm sure I'll have more suggestions once I get some sleep. :tinfoil:
 

sbbsga

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Selfbuilt pretty much covered what I wanted to say, he even stated the locator flash. :thumbsup:

It is good to see the Turbo is not in the main sequence - easy double click activation on any mode. I hope this point stays this way on the shipping version. Maybe double click again to return to the last mode from Turbo.

Also, thick matte anodization on the final version and larger carrier and body for larger cells.
 

Bronco

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What's that, Swede? Flashaholics on CPF lobbying for fewer lumens in a light? Say it isn't so. ;) :D

Actually, I think your recommendation has a lot of merit. Unless it can be shown that the current 5000+ lumen turbo output isn't, in fact, putting a significant strain on the batteries, I think most of us could probably live with 4500 lumens on turbo.

And I have to pause to quickly note for the record how wonderful the advance of LED flashlight technology has been these past few years. As Selfbuilt describes, the MiniMax is almost purely a flood light. None of us would waste even a second talking about how well it throws, am I right? Well consider for a second that the MiniMax has over twice the throw of the XP-G version of the Fenix TK-12 tactical 18650 that we were all so excited about not that long ago. It's just remarkable.

Anyway, beyond that, I think Selfbuilt has once again done an outstanding job of touching on the biggest potential areas of improvement for this light.

-- Mode spacing definitely needs to be addressed. While 7 lumens would rarely be considered a moonlight/firefly mode for most lights, I suspect the beam profile of the MiniMax makes 7 lumens feel very much like that. We could maybe bump this number down just a little, but I'll defer to Selfbuilt on that matter. Overall though, I'd prefer an output spacing more along the lines of 3-7(?)/150/550/2000/4500-5000.

-- A locator beacon on the switch is an excellent idea, as is the thought of having the tripod attachment point directly opposite the switch. In this way you can keep the switch relatively flush to aid in protecting it and preventing accidental activations, yet still make it easy to find tactilely. The tripod attachment recess could have a small but robust raised knurled ring surrounding it. Turn the ring 90 degrees from off to provide a lockout mode for the switch on the opposite side and then rotate a further 90 degrees in the same direction for both lockout and to activate the locator beacon.

-- UI is a bit awkward as Selfbuilt has pointed out. I'd prefer that we keep the UI extremely simple, however. How about something like:

Single press from off to latch on to last level used
Press and hold from off for momentary turbo
From on, single presses to continuously cycle through the various brightness levels
From on, double press from any level for turbo (not sure if this is really necessary)
From on, triple press from any level for strobe
From on, press and hold for off.

It's intuitive, you don't have to memorize multiple output groupings and it provides just about all the functionality most folks would ever need.

-- As a rule, I tend to hate battery carriers. And if I'm being honest, the preproduction version pictured in Selfbeam's photos above doesn't look particularly robust. If there's an economical way to avoid having one in this light that wouldn't add too much weight, I'd love to see it eliminated. If not, beef up the carrier just a bit and I can live with it. Just make sure whatever system is used can easily accommodate the latest generation of high capacity, but increasingly oversized 18650s.

-- Maybe some strong neodymium magnets protected under the tail cap so that the light could easily stick to any ferrous surface?
 
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JaimeB

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I completely agree with xed888 - great with the 3.5 minute "blast/turbo" mode like most other manufacturers, but it needs to step down to the 2000 lumen range for as long as the regulation (both temperature/current) steps it down to 870 lumens. Keep the 870 lumens as the default "High mode" - amaing super long run-time!

They should emulate the TM-15 or the Spark SP-6. Actually, the double step down would make the regulation better than the two mentioned above (as far as regulation goes). Even w/o knowing the price, a real 870 lumen "monster" torch with only 3.5 minutes of glory output is not very appealing.

Awesome flooder, for those who like flood only torches.
 

TEEJ

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I suppose the UI question will be dictated by the projected use of the light. As a flooder, you NEED a lot more lumens to cover the larger area...so "normal" spacing is not going to work the same way it does on lights with "normal beam angles".

IE: A dog walker might be perfectly happy with a 900 L flood, and the ability to blast out 5k L for a bit to see what was a bit further out, etc.

A continuous output/control ring would probably be the best UI for this overall, as it would let everyone both preset the output before turning it on, and/or simply have it come on where it was last, etc...as well as adjusting the output on the fly.

A long run time is of course needed for night hikes/long walks, and, typically, the lux on the trail is not required to be incredible, but, does need to be "enough" to avoid tripping on roots or snakes, etc. The floodier lights can be dimmer, as they provide more time to SEE that sort of thing on the trail, because there's little or no hot spot to glare out the details, and, no need to pan the light to and from to cover the areas of concern, etc.

If you for example go for a longer time at say 2k L, you have more heat to dissipate, and, less run time....and the thermal issue the light has to handle probably dictated the output/run time compromises.

It would be helpful from a feedback perspective to know what the limiting factors were, as otherwise, its easier to just throw out stuff like, hey, lets have 5k L for 2 hours, etc.

:D
 

JaimeB

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Teej- There will aways be 870 lumens on hi and 490 on medium for hours and hours of trail walking.

If it can't do 2000 lumens for any lenght of time, give me a TM-11 or the new Eagletac (6 x XP-G) MX25L3c S2 which is also a super flooder.

It is all about placing a product correctly in the marketpalce...
 

InfinitusEquitas

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@Teej - The problem is it's ALL flood. Not even 20kcd on the highest setting. With a flood beam pattern, you'll be lucky to see well 20-30 meters ahead with it on high. Walking my dog, I like to light up the ground very clearly, but to be able to just raise the light and see a fair distance.

This light will make the SX25L3 look like a thrower.

@Selfbuilt - This probably won't go anywhere, but one other thought - something I would LOVE to see - factory, partially dedomed LEDs. Given my experience with other MTG2's, with a dedome this light would be ideal, sacrificing maybe 10-15% of the output but gaining about double the throw.
 

maxrep12

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@Teej - The problem is it's ALL flood. Not even 20kcd on the highest setting. With a flood beam pattern, you'll be lucky to see well 20-30 meters ahead with it on high. Walking my dog, I like to light up the ground very clearly, but to be able to just raise the light and see a fair distance.
I think you have it exactly backwards. Niwalker is well aware they are building a flood light. Hiking with a thrower is quite obnoxious, as the small hot spot bounces around with your body movement. Additionally, most of our visual information comes from our peripheral vision. Our sense of balance at night is aided by the peripheral awareness a flood light offers. Flood lights better serve most practical applications for lighting.
 

maxrep12

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Messages
184
With a flood beam pattern, you'll be lucky to see well 20-30 meters ahead with it on high.
From the owner of GoingGear, who has used this pre release version; "If you like floody lights, this guy is about as floody as lights get. Awful distance, but amazing area lighting for about 100 yards. I really like it." I think, InfinitusEquitas, you have clearly underestimated the lighting distance in an attempt to bolster your position.
 
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