P7, MC-E, SST-50/90 comparison

rickypanecatyl

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I'm overwhelmed with all this new info here and was wondering if someone could explain the difference in these bulbs? TIA
 

waddup

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all 3 are the best and brightest available.

p7 = very bright (700 lumens) (stock 4 D maglight maybe 50 lumens)

mc-e is equally bright but generally is a more floody led then the p7.

sst are a 40% step up in brightness from the p7 and mc-e.


basically.
 

Gunner12

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The stock 4D is around 60 lumen, but the larger reflector gives it throw which could make it seem brighter.

MC-E and P7, imagine four or their respective cousin LEDs, the XR-E/XP-E and P4 respectively, in a single package. The P7 is hard wired in parallel while the MC-E has individually addressable dies. The SST-50 is a large single die LED which has a bit more emitting area then either the MCE or the P7. Since it has a similar efficiency to both, it can produce more output for the same drive current, and take a higher drive current (as long as there is sufficient heatsinking). The SST-90 has an even larger die then the SST-50, think of it as a beefed up SST-50 if that helps.
 

grunscga

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I thought the "max safe" emitter rating for the P7 and MC-E was 900 lumen and 700 lumen, respectively? I think the SST-50 is supposed to max out around 1250 lumen, and the SST-90 is something like 2250 lumen.

All 4 are either quad-die (P7 & MC-E), or a single die that is the same size as 4 regular emitters (SST-50/90). The quad-die setup requires careful reflector design, or you end up with a dark spot ("donut hole") in the middle of the beam, which is a simple projection of the dark spot in the middle of the 4 LEDs on the emitter. The SSTs should avoid the dark spot by virtue of being one monolithic die, but due to overall size, they will never be "as good" at long-distance throw as a smaller LED like an XR-E or XP-E. Of course, the XR-E looks like it's going to top out around 275 lumens, and there is a lot to be said for raw power when you're looking to put light downrange.

The big distinction is that the P7 and the MC-E both top out at around 2.8 to 3 amps of current before they start to destroy themselves. The SST-50 can handle up to 5 amps, and the SST-90 up to 9, I believe.

So, in reality, there are two major differences, both based on drive current:

  • It's not really too difficult to safely pull 3 amps out of modern batteries (the TK-40--an MC-E--even uses AA batteries). With rechargeables you can do it with as little as 2 cells. Nine amps, on the other hand, either requires special "high-current" batteries with crazy-short runtimes, or a whole pile of normal batteries (I think manufacturers are looking at 6x 18650 lights for the SST-90; for reference, that's basically an average laptop battery, completely drained by the light in 90 minutes).
  • Heat is the real killer. A 3.5V emitter pulling 3A of current is 10.5 watts, most of which turns into heat rather than light. This is the other reason why most P7/MC-E lights are pretty large lights. Smaller lights can't safely dissipate that kind of heat. Of course, with the SSTs, heat production goes through the roof. 3.5V x 9A = 31.5 watts of power to dissipate, which requires a lot of heat sink mass, or active cooling. I'm waiting for somebody here to build a custom 2- or 3-emitter SST-90 with built-in CPU fans. :) Just recently, there was a thread here about someone that built a custom SST-90 head into a D maglite, and the emitter got so hot during testing that it melted the solder and fell off. :eek:
 
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grunscga

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The SST-90 has an even larger die then the SST-50, ...

You learn something new everyday. :) I was convinced they were the same size. Luckily, I looked up the specs before I put my foot in my mouth... :whistle:

For the record, the SST-50 is 5mm^2 (or about 2.2mm on a side), and the SST-90 is 9mm^2 (3mm on a side).

Hmm. That (along with the more reasonable drive current) really makes the SST-50 a better choice for flashlights, IMHO.
 

rickypanecatyl

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Wow you guys are smart! :)

So ... does that mean the P7 would be better than the MC-E for throw/long distance?

Is the efficiency similar? I was reading on SSC own site (I know - not necessarily an unbiased opinion) that they said the p7 was the most effiecient light at 90 lumens per watt ... Are they all in that range?

I was blown away by those numbers ... (sorry this is all new to me) so that means that HID's are about 2-3 as bright per watt as halogens/incandescents, fluorencent lighting (though it can't throw) is even brighter per watt than HID's and these P7 LED's are almost 2X as efficient as HID's? Is that right?

So are there any flashlights with SST 90's? (I'm looking for the most powerful light I can get - but leaning towards better throw than flood, for the same size or smaller than a 2 D cell mag light and under $200).
 

Gunner12

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The SST-50 should be better then both at throwing since it has no gaps between died because it only has one die. As for P7 vs MC-E in throw, I think some of it has to do with reflector design but from the beamshots I've seen, they are similar.

Efficiency will depend on the flux bin. A low flux bin P7 will be less efficient then a high flux bin MC-E and vice versa.

If you want data, search through this thread for MC-E, P7, SST-90, and other LED test data.

As for different light sources and their efficiencies, as a general rule incans < florescents < LEDs =< HID.

Some LEDs are less efficient then fluorescents, and some ven less efficient then high power incans (higher power incans are more efficient then lower power incans) but those LEDs are either very warm white or are the really cheap ones.

HIDs can't go low power wise, or else the spark that creates the light won't strike (or something, I don't remember the exact reason) that's why there aren't HIDs under 10 watts. Also, a 10 watt HID is around 500 lumen, while a quad die LED or larger die LED at 10 watts can be be brighter. The HID will still throw further despite the lower output due to the higher surface brightness.

LEDs can't go very high power wise because they need heatsinking to keep from cooking themselves, so high power HIDs and fluorescents have the LEDs beat there, though you can have strings of LEDs replace fluorescents (usually it will be less cost effective though)

I don't recall seeing ready made SST-90 lights, but you can mod one yourself with the right heatsink and the LED(check the B/S/T, marketplace, and online).

Edit: I don't recall anything out right now with the SST-90. I'd lover to buy one, but I lack the money, so I'm looking at buying a heatsink and the LED and direct driving it in a 3D mag.
 
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waddup

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So are there any flashlights with SST 90's? (I'm looking for the most powerful light I can get - but leaning towards better throw than flood, for the same size or smaller than a 2 D cell mag light and under $200).

for $200 ?

several.
 

LEDninja

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there is a beam comparison of a P7 and MCE here.
http://www.cpfmarketplace.com/mp/showthread.php?t=203104
You can see the MCE is much brighter than the P7.
Do not let the blah blah numbers based on different criteria fool you.
When the P7 came out SSC decided to rank them as follows: (old) B bin 670-740 lm, (old) C bin 740-900 lm. The flashlight manufacturers promptly put '900 lumens' on the sides of their torches.
As it turned out most of the LEDs are between 700 and 800 lm. A few made it above 800 lm. So SSC redid the binning: (new) C bin 700-800 lm, (new) D bin 800-900 lm. So a P7 torch will give you 700+ lm, not a guaranteed 900 LED lm @ 2.8A.
It is hard to produce 2.8A so many of the smaller torches run at 2.2A. (I never got above 2.1A with my MTE) So my MTE is producing 525+ LED lumens.
About 20% of the light is absorbed by good optics, about 1/3 by bad ones. My MTE is an El Cheapo so I probably am getting 350+ lm OTF (out the front). A lot less than the '900 lumens' on the side of the torch.
So ... does that mean the P7 would be better than the MC-E for throw/long distance?

I do not have #s handy for the P7/MCE, only for the XRE. But the P7/MCE use the same dies as the XRE so the #s should be applicable.
350mA => 80 lm
1000mA => 160 lm
Note a 3X increase in power only gives you a 2X increase in brightness.
The 90 lumens/watt is running each die at 350mA or less. When you max out the P7/MCE you get a lot less efficiency.
Is the efficiency similar? I was reading on SSC own site (I know - not necessarily an unbiased opinion) that they said the p7 was the most effiecient light at 90 lumens per watt ... Are they all in that range?
I was blown away by those numbers ... (sorry this is all new to me) so that means that HID's are about 2-3 as bright per watt as halogens/incandescents, fluorencent lighting (though it can't throw) is even brighter per watt than HID's and these P7 LED's are almost 2X as efficient as HID's? Is that right?

Blaster, the Next Generation: Luminus Phlatlight SSR-90, 1,750 lumens, 13,000 lux
http://www.cpfmarketplace.com/mp/showthread.php?t=199637
There is a whole bunch of SST50/90 lights out but they seem to be taking a P7/MCE torch and just replacing the LED. Not running the SST at full potential.
An SST90 is only brighter than a P7/MCE when run at 9A. At 2.8A the P7/MCE/SST90 are about the same brightness.
So are there any flashlights with SST 90's?

You seem to have missed grunscga's little calculation 3.5V x 9A = 31.5 watts.
Before you waste money do this little experiment.
Buy the next higher wattage bulb than 31.5W (probably a 40W). Screw the bulb into a lamp, turn the lamp on while holding on to the bulb. Lets see how long you can hold on to the bulb or end up in hospital with 3rd degree burns.
You need a light to run a minimum of 30 minutes straight, preferably 2 hours for it to be useful. A SST90 light smaller than a 2 D cell mag will run 5-10 minutes before it gets too hot to hold.
I went for a hike with the Toronto area CPF members earlier this year. I started with my 3C mag P7. After about 15-20 minutes, the mag was starting to get warm. I switched to my EDC-P7 (18650). Within 5 minutes it was too hot to hold and I have to switch back. Bright but small lights just is not practical due to heat produced.
(I'm looking for the most powerful light I can get - but leaning towards better throw than flood, for the same size or smaller than a 2 D cell mag light and under $200).

The most powerful light with throw that can be easily bought is probably an HID. If you wait for the sales you can probably get one for under $100. But they are BIG and HEAVY. Tebore brought one to last year's Toronto CPF meet and complained of a sore back for a week after. The HID is the big thing on the chair. The huge reflector is whats giving the throw.
p1000031resizeji1named.jpg
 
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Curt R

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The Seoul slug on the P7 is larger than that of the
MC-E. The phosphors used by Seoul are more efficient
than the Cree phosphors but are more susceptible to
heat degrading than those used by Cree. The Nichia
phosphors by agreement are not yet used in the P7 LED.
Some Seoul P4 LEDs are now starting to use the new
phosphors.



Curt
 

bigchelis

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Lumens are OTF as tested by MrGman or Nailbender

Direct drive P7 = almost all flood and 700ish peak lumens on direct drive ~3A with a single IMR C or IMR 18650, but 600ish after 3min.

MC-E 2C Mag = tons of throw and some spill with 610 lumens at 1.4A with 2 IMR C cells, lumens stay put.

Currently; I am having Naibender do an SST-90 direct drive with D2flex. I hope to get floody light in a 1C hosts with IMR C cell. 1500 Peak lumens, but we have to wait and see. Being direct drive and with likely 9A of current the peak lumens will drop really fast. This is why I want the D2flex.:twothumbs
 

350xfire

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Anybody been able to get a spot with SST-90 or 50? I am looking at doing one for a dive light app and want a really hot spot, like 3 feet at 15 feet of distance. Oh and with a 35-40mm reflector...
Thanks
 

recDNA

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The stock 4D is around 60 lumen, but the larger reflector gives it throw which could make it seem brighter.

MC-E and P7, imagine four or their respective cousin LEDs, the XR-E/XP-E and P4 respectively, in a single package. The P7 is hard wired in parallel while the MC-E has individually addressable dies. The SST-50 is a large single die LED which has a bit more emitting area then either the MCE or the P7. Since it has a similar efficiency to both, it can produce more output for the same drive current, and take a higher drive current (as long as there is sufficient heatsinking). The SST-90 has an even larger die then the SST-50, think of it as a beefed up SST-50 if that helps.

If the SST-50 is more efficient than the MC-E why is it that none of the SST-50 lights I've read about are as bright as the top MC-E lights?
 

js-lots

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You learn something new everyday. :) I was convinced they were the same size. Luckily, I looked up the specs before I put my foot in my mouth... :whistle:

For the record, the SST-50 is 5mm^2 (or about 2.2mm on a side), and the SST-90 is 9mm^2 (3mm on a side).

Hmm. That (along with the more reasonable drive current) really makes the SST-50 a better choice for flashlights, IMHO.

I own both the sst 50 and sst 90 drop ins from nailbender. the 90 on direct drive from and imr 18650 is wicked bright and it doesnt get to hot to hold after running it for a while. Those two drop ins have become my favorite for edc.
 

grunscga

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the 90 on direct drive from and imr 18650 is wicked bright and it doesnt get to hot to hold after running it for a while.

I'll bet it's bright. It's probably like holding a miniature sun.:cool: You also get what, 12 minutes of runtime on that IMR 18650?

I'm not saying that the SST-90 won't make for some awe-inspiring custom lights (personally, I want to see somebody do a triple SST-90 setup :eek:oo:). It just seems to me that it's not as practical as it's smaller cousin for EDC-type lights, since most people do not want to carry 4 batteries so they can run their EDC for an hour (even assuming they don't start setting things on fire after 20 minutes).
 

brianch

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I'll bet it's bright. It's probably like holding a miniature sun.:cool: You also get what, 12 minutes of runtime on that IMR 18650?

I'm not saying that the SST-90 won't make for some awe-inspiring custom lights (personally, I want to see somebody do a triple SST-90 setup :eek:oo:). It just seems to me that it's not as practical as it's smaller cousin for EDC-type lights, since most people do not want to carry 4 batteries so they can run their EDC for an hour (even assuming they don't start setting things on fire after 20 minutes).
I agree, with all this development in LED technology we need to invest more in to battery technology. Battery life already sucks with MC-E's and P7s. The SST's will only make it worse.
 

TorchMan

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Awesome and fantastic. I feel like HG Wells coming from the past into the future. In my day 200 lumens was produced by overdriving! 700+ lumens? 40% more possible from another LED?

I am a fossil from the past, I still love my lights. I might have to consider a new one now. I know as little about modern lights as LEDs. It would have to be adjustable, down to a very dim level. Can any of these LEDs do that, or do they need a big current to light?

This go 'round shold be fun, but wallet is shaking already!
 

LEDninja

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The 40% more is for the SST-50. The SST-90 tops out at 2250 lumens at 9 amps. For comparison your household circuits are probably 15 amps.
Blaster, the Next Generation: Luminus Phlatlight SSR-90, 1,750 lumens, 13,000 lux
Many others are in development. Note these lights are huge for heatsinking all that power.
700+ lumens? 40% more possible from another LED?

In theory they can be dimmed down as much as you want. In practice the low is around 100 lumens. You will be using these monsters outdoors at a hundred yards where having a lower lumen value does not make sense.
To go for a really low level you are stuck with AA/CR123A lights that can be dimmed down to 0.2 lumens (though 3-15 lumens is more common). Many of these lights are 90 to 200 lumens at the top end.
It would have to be adjustable, down to a very dim level. Can any of these LEDs do that, or do they need a big current to light?

He he he.
When I 1st came across CPF the 30 lumen Nuwai QIII got to 75 lumens by overdriving.
I got my Radio Shack branded Turtlelite from 3 lumens to 30 lumens by buying a Tectite LPR-113 LED PR2 upgrade bulb. The bulb cost twice as much as the flashlight.
In my day 200 lumens was produced by overdriving!
 
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