Single Cell CR123A Lights: What do you use?

Olumin

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Sep 20, 2020
Messages
1,337
Location
"...that famous Texas part of Hamburg"
The new Keeppower USB rechargeable R123s' constant 3V output effectively turns its voltage-based boost into current regulation.
https://www.keeppower.com.cn/products_detail.php?id=664 I am wondering how these are working with your MDC? On the site Malkoff answered a question, saying he doesn't trust the 3V rechargeables to stay at 3V. I am hoping they are working for you still.

I had no idea those existed. I ordered a few of them to try them in some of my lights. As expected, they work just fine in the 6p and M6. Unfortunately, they are too long to work in the A2, it won't even turn on. I hoped they might work. There should be no problems running them in any single cell light, but I think they will probably be too long for anything taking 3 cells or more (the extra length accumulates). They barely fit in the Surefire Fury, but I don't think the tailcap likes it very much. Still very useful and good to have around.
 

Kestrel

Flashaholic
Joined
Oct 31, 2007
Messages
7,328
Location
Willamette Valley, OR
I expect there will always be a role for a couple of CR123 (primary) lights in my stable:
a few SureFire L1's and a SureFire T1A Titan - neither of which should really be run with LiIons IMO.
(Both of which are /outstanding/ designs which have a low likelihood of seeing comparable lights done in a 1xAA format.)

I use a 1xCR123 SureFire Minimus headlamp a fair bit while camping, so it's great to have the T1A carrying a spare cell. :thumbsup:
 
Last edited:

vicv

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 22, 2013
Messages
2,738
Location
Southern Ontario
I had no idea those existed. I ordered a few of them to try them in some of my lights. As expected, they work just fine in the 6p and M6. Unfortunately, they are too long to work in the A2, it won't even turn on. I hoped they might work. There should be no problems running them in any single cell light, but I think they will probably be too long for anything taking 3 cells or more (the extra length accumulates). They barely fit in the Surefire Fury, but I don't think the tailcap likes it very much. Still very useful and good to have around.

I'm surprised by this. If they're regulated to 3.0v, that m6 if running the mn20 is probably around 2.5v a cell. So you'll be 1.5v over. That's quite a bit for a high output lamp
 

Olumin

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Sep 20, 2020
Messages
1,337
Location
"...that famous Texas part of Hamburg"
Average voltage after a few minutes yes, peak voltage of a brand new battery however is higher. The lamp modules are designed to take 6v, and can actually accommodate even higher voltage. Brand new Lithiums can read as much as 3.2V. There are always tolerances in such things. The Keeppower RCR123A is designed and advertised as a direct replacement for a Lithium CR123A, and are actually regulated to remain at 3V throughout their discharge, as opposed to CR123s which drop off after a few seconds. This will actually give you a kind of constant-brightness regulation when used in Inans, as long as you can fit them.

Whether or not being run on consistently 3v will reduce the lifespan of lamp modules designed for CR123s in the long term I cannot say, but no bulb will blow when using the keeppowers.
 

jon_slider

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 31, 2015
Messages
5,068
Yes. Which is 4.8v. Each battery is 2.4v under a ~1A load

your assumed voltages are mistaken

the Keeppower P1634U1 is a uniquely regulated battery, it has a 3v constant regulated output. Look at the GREEN line:

pic is a link to the source of the data
 
Last edited:

vicv

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 22, 2013
Messages
2,738
Location
Southern Ontario
How are my assumed voltages mistaken? Your graph shows a CR123A battery starting at 3 volts and immediately dropping down. Which is what I said. Of course a lamp will survive that quick spike of voltage. There is such a thing as startup current which can be 8 times the running current. But you will see that bulbs that draw around 1 amp and are made for two primary lithium batteries have a design envelope of 4.8 volts. Look at the lamp specifications on lumens factory website if you can't accept what I'm saying.
I have tried running a P60 Lamp assembly before on two LFP 123 batteries. Those are 3.2 volts under load. So that's only 0.4 V total over these regulated batteries. They instantly blow the bulb. So I'm going by experience. That being said I do not have direct experience with these exact batteries so I'm not sure
 

jon_slider

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 31, 2015
Messages
5,068
How are my assumed voltages mistaken?
you have a misunderstanding of the chart I posted.. I did the same thing at first..
we need to ignore the black dashed line for CR123
and focus on the GREEN line,
I4nQARCl.jpg


I edited the image to add a Red Arrow to focus your attention on the 3v Regulated output represented by the GREEN line

that Keeppower P1634U1 is not a 3.2v LiFePO4 battery..

it is a 3.7v LiIon that stays Regulated at 3 volts until it dies..

I have tried running a P60 Lamp assembly before on two LFP 123 batteries. Those are 3.2 volts under load. So that's only 0.4 V total over these regulated batteries. They instantly blow the bulb. So I'm going by experience.
"Do not use rechargeable LFP 123A batteries with the P60 lamp assembly or with other incandescent illumination tools"

your experience with LiFePo4 and incandescent bulbs is totally valid, I believe you. But you are talking about bulbs and batteries that are different than this discussion, which is about LEDs, not bulbs.. and a LiIon battery with regulated output, not a LiFeP04 battery.
 
Last edited:

vicv

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Mar 22, 2013
Messages
2,738
Location
Southern Ontario
A person specifically mentioned an M6 which is an incandescent bulb. I will agree for an led light which has a problem with the full lithium ion voltage, these will be excellent.
Agreed but an LFP 123 is basically regulated it has such a flat discharge curve. I was using it as an example. But you are correct They are a different battery than what is being discussed. And the regulated batteries should provide better runtime as they're higher wh.
Anyway sorry to derail this conversation. While I think single CR 123 lights do definitely have a niche, in today's world we have better options. They still require a boost circuit and with the ever expectation of higher output, they're no longer a viable power source for new lights. Except maybe the real tactical lights. But then 2 cells is better.
This also coming from someone who still loves alkaline powered maglites
 

scout24

Flashaholic
Joined
Dec 23, 2008
Messages
8,869
Location
Penn's Woods
Let's get back to the OP's topic, folks. 1x123 lights, not what cells you're using and discussion thereof. Thanks!
 

bykfixer

Flashaholic
Joined
Aug 9, 2015
Messages
20,236
Location
John 3:16
For a treat an E1 with a Lumens Factory bulb is a pretty sweet little light using a CR123. Amazing little flashlight. Such irony that once they could hardly give them away and now they go for premium prices when you can find one.
I found a gun metal 'executive' with cross hair logo here, stuck in a light assembly from Mark and thought "good Lord I could end bankrupt if I let the voices reign"
……must………stop……at one!!! :D
 
Last edited:

Noctiluco

Newly Enlightened
Joined
May 27, 2012
Messages
175
Location
Spain
Sunwayman V10R XHP50 3V, and as spare, Sunwayman V10R XM-L2 and Fenix E15 170 lumens.
 

gottawearshades

Enlightened
Joined
Sep 3, 2007
Messages
986
There's something about how a 123A light like HDS or a Malkoff MDC fills the hand. It's just right. They're kind of overbuilt, bigger than they need to be if you compare them to something like an Olight S1, but I've been carrying a light like this (Surefire L1 before these), and I go everywhere with an HDS. You need to try one.
 
Top