[Review] MASSDROP BRASS AAA POCKET FLASHLIGHT (Nichia 219/ 1x AAA)

jon_slider

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For those who are concerned about the Electronic switch in the Brass Tool, you can still get a Copper Tool w Nichia for <$24, with the mechanical switch. fwiw, Brass is actually a pretty poor conductor, Aluminum is 2x more conductive, and Copper is over 3x more conductive. Of course buy them all :)

Im a huge fan of the AAA Tools with Nichia, not to use on high mode, but to use on Medium and Low.. The TiTool has issues on High, but not on Med and Low.. same will be true for the BrassTool imo.

To me, its a killer deal any time a Tool w Nichia goes for <$25
 
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LiftdT4R

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Just signed up for one with the Cree. Are you guys preferring the Nichia on this? If so I may buy one as well. $25 shipped is a killer deal.
 

jon_slider

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Just signed up for one with the Cree. Are you guys preferring the Nichia on this? If so I may buy one as well. $25 shipped is a killer deal.
I only buy the Nichia versions
this is a Nichia in a Tool, click the pic for the full story (images thanks to maukka)


here is an example of a cree, notice how little red the LED makes


the cree version is brighter, with less red, the nichia version is less bright, with more red
buy both.. learn the pros and cons of each.. there is no wrong way to spend money on toys :)
 

Timothybil

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If you want to do a side-by-side comparison, go to GearBest and pickup a Singfire 348, which is a CREE, and a BLF 348, which is the same light with a Nichia instead. They usually sell for around $15 for both of them.
 

iamlucky13

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I only buy the Nichia versions
this is a Nichia in a Tool, click the pic for the full story (images thanks to maukka)


here is an example of a cree, notice how little red the LED makes


the cree version is brighter, with less red, the nichia version is less bright, with more red
buy both.. learn the pros and cons of each.. there is no wrong way to spend money on toys :)

Notice the Nichia is stronger in the teal range, too. On occasion I've noticed this making a difference in scenes with bright colors right in that range.

Of course Cree makes high CRI emitters (Zebralight uses them), too, but Nichia seems to dominate the high CRI sub-market for flashlights. My 90+ CRI Armytek seems a bit more golden, compared to the more truly neutral tint of the Nichia. I think Nichia might have an extra ingredient in their phosphor formula that gives them a slight edge in most situations (notice the double bump).

Technically, a closer color temperature makes for a better comparison. Here's another measurement from Maukka of a 4530K light shown in the middle. With more phosphor involved in getting a lower CCT, the CRI also climbs a hair, but the main point is the warmer color temperature naturally includes more red. If viewed on a large monitor, shrinking your browser size should force the images to display at the same size:





 

jon_slider

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I do not believe a 4500k LED at CRI 72 is very close to a 4500k LED that is at CRI 92. Warm does not = high CRI

Just to tie back on topic
I buy Lumintop Tools with Nichia because I want an LED like the picture, showing very Tall red graph (93 CRI plots a larger volume under the curve than a 72 CRI led),

it is my personal preference to have High CRI
not saying the neutral white at lower CRI is any less fun for someone else
do whatever makes you grinnn
 
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iamlucky13

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I do not believe a 4500k LED at CRI 72 is very close to a 4500k LED that is at CRI 92. Warm does not = high CRI

Very much agree. The Thrunite above still plainly has far less red in its beam than the Tool with Nichia, but the Olight was at a bigger disadvantage due to being cooler.
 

SonnyJim

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I've got a Nichia on the way, and I'm excited to try this tail cap clicky. I have the Copper Tool, and am feeling so-so about it's big rubber boot. I'm also hoping the Brass Tool head will work with my Maratac Brass for a nice compact twisty. I tried the Copper tool head on my Maratac Copper, but I think spacing of the threads were too far down the shaft to make contact : ( The Maratac worked on the Tool body, but not vice versa. I'm wondering if I could grind the leading edge down (on the Tool head) to shorten the distance...
 

StudFreeman

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About 18 months ago Lumintop switched from a very efficient 2-board sandwich driver to a 1-board driver with smaller inductor. Upz's pics show this brass Tool has the latter. Some of their lights evidently still come with the efficient 2-board driver though - seems like a lottery.

Neat review, UPz. Shame Lumintop dropped the ball on efficiency. They used to lead the pack in AAA efficiency.
 

gunga

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I've been using the single board driver in a few lights (because I got l-m-h mode order). Love the order, lack of pwm, levels are quite good. But man, efficiency is terrible.
 

jon_slider

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Has a decision been made on whether the Low on the Brass Tool will stay at 3 lumens, or drop to 1 lumen like ReyLights?
 

SofubiShogun

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Excellent info and review, I see I have come to the right place for torch info and discussion.
 

jon_slider

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Here is a comparison of the driver traces of the Brass Tool, Copper ReyLight Tool, Copper Maratac, and Copper Worm

32406390040_7006e36e2e_h.jpg


Im trying to "see", if there are differences.. None of the lights has PWM, but Im trying to figure out why UPZ's Brass Tool is not flat regulated like his Worm.. I dont know if the 3 lights on right (mine) are flat regulated on high. Im hoping to get a pic of maukkas CuTool, which IS flat regulated and runs for an hour on high, while the Brass Tool UPZ has only runs for 1/2 hour.. (Maukkas TiTool only runs 1/2 hour, and is not regulated, it matches the poor efficiency of the Brass Tool)

what Im trying to figure out is why maukkas CU tool IS Flat regulated, and UPZ's CU Tool is not..

here is UPZ's CuTool and CuWorm w nichia, note the worm has flat regulation and the CuTool does not, although both are NoPWM versions… (iow, "efficiency" differences are NOT due to one having PWM and the other NoPWM.. there is something else going on)
massdrop_brass_aaa_cp_chart.png


contrast with maukkas CuTool that IS flat regulated (and has twice the runtime)
r0oAQm0.png


Im waiting for a pic of maukkas driver to compare to the others.. fwiw, maukkas CuTool is one of the newer versions with NoPWM..
 
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khaleeq

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Great review! Was just about to pull the trigger on Tool AAA and Colored worm based on what I had seen in relatively older reviews. Now that I have seen your run time graph, will hold back and buy Copper Worm instead. I only prefer lights that have flat, good regulation on high. You saved my skin. Thanks
 
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