Zebralight SC5 (1xAA, XM-L2) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS, VIDEO and more!

WalkIntoTheLight

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From this, I can only assume that the standard uncalibrated PID is set to a temperature level that the SC5 never reaches, even on repeated restarts. That said, I can tell you the button area was getting quite hot near the end of all those re-starts. Using an infrared thermometer, I clocked surface temperatures at the base of the head as high as the low 70 degree C range shortly before output reached the typical H2 level.

I just checked my SC62, and surface temp on that light (uncooled) with multiple re-starts stayed in the low 60 degree C range. But you could see the effect of the PID kicking in immediately to drop output (which meant I had to keep switching for H2 and back to H1 very frequently to try and keep the temp/output up).

Out of curiosity, what is the maximum temperature reached by the SC62 if you run it on max and allow PID to do its thing? I presume it's less than 60C, but is it higher than 50C ?
 

Tapis

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This might have been answered, but I see the same gap between the tailcap and the body as in the SC62w, and wonder whether it has a design function. Personally, I would have liked a tight look like in the second picture. Any reason why Zebra keeps this gap across its line?

Vau8DXP.jpg
 
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WalkIntoTheLight

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This might have been answered, but I see the same gap between the tailcap and the body as in the SC62w, and wonder whether it has a design function. Personally, I would have liked a tight look like in the second picture. Any reason why Zebra keeps this gap across its line?

All my ZL's have that gap to some degree. I think it's necessary to make sure the tailcap presses down onto the end of the body, so that an electrical path is secure. Otherwise, you could end up with a situation where the light is "locked out". Not much of a gap is needed, but I suppose that manufacturing tolerances cause it to vary a bit on each light.
 

Tapis

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... Not much of a gap is needed, but I suppose that manufacturing tolerances cause it to vary a bit on each light.
I visited my in-law yesterday and checked the Zebralight SC62w I bought him as a gift and indeed, the gap is smaller on his light. Thanks WITL for the clarification.
 

markr6

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Well, I've been a very loyal SC52w fan for a while now. But I got my SC5w OP (returned the first non-OP one) and it's a keeper! I have to admit, it's the winner over the SC52w. Not that the SC52w is a bad light, it's just that the SC5w does everything as well, and better. I'm keeping the SC52w since it's better at fitting in a pocket, but that's about it. That's just my opinion. Watching this review again also help drive home my feelings on the SC5. Love it!!!
 

marsalla

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As always a very detailed and well presented review by selfbuilt. My question is why would zebralight take away the ability to use 14500 batteries. I love my sc52. Any thoughts?
 

markr6

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As always a very detailed and well presented review by selfbuilt. My question is why would zebralight take away the ability to use 14500 batteries. I love my sc52. Any thoughts?

There's a lot of discussion in some of the other SC5 threads. I think it comes down to the SC5 doing as well (or better) with a common NiMH instead Li-Ion. Some people like one over the other, but I think the pros/cons are pretty minor.
 

WalkIntoTheLight

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As always a very detailed and well presented review by selfbuilt. My question is why would zebralight take away the ability to use 14500 batteries. I love my sc52. Any thoughts?

I think it also has a bit to do with efficiency. I tested my SC5w run-times on a new regular Eneloop (gen 4), and I get longer runs than I do with my SC52 and SC52w-L2 on similar outputs. (BTW, my run-times are better than what Selfbuilt got. I'm not sure if that's just sample variation, or if it was because his regular Eneloop may have been a little old or not fully charged or something.)

Zebralight was probably able to use a more efficient driver, since they only have to do boost circuitry if they stick with Eneloops. No buck needed.
 

Uprightman

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This sc5 is my first zebralight, and I like it a lot. I'm noticing when I do the two short clicks to turn it on in medium it seems to go to high and quickly step down. Is this normal? I'm thinking it is, because it seems to cycle modes like that when going to strobe as well.
 

KeepingItLight

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This sc5 is my first zebralight, and I like it a lot. I'm noticing when I do the two short clicks to turn it on in medium it seems to go to high and quickly step down. Is this normal? I'm thinking it is, because it seems to cycle modes like that when going to strobe as well.


Right you are!

You can avoid the momentary high output by using press-and-hold to turn on your light. Hold long enough to bypass low mode, and release when you see medium.
 

LightObsession

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I'm having difficulty whether there's enough performance increase from the SC52w to the SC5W to make the purchase. Any input from those that own both? There are times that I'd like a bit more max output then the SC52W offers.
 

markr6

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I'm having difficulty whether there's enough performance increase from the SC52w to the SC5W to make the purchase. Any input from those that own both? There are times that I'd like a bit more max output then the SC52W offers.

I like the smaller size and less weight of the SC52w, but having a longer runtime on max output, with an Eneloop, really makes it a tough decision. I tend to favor my SC5w OP. Actually, neither get used much since nearly every light I have is the 1x18650 format.
 

kreisl

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A standby current drain is inevitable on the SC5, due to the electronic switch in the head. Unfortunately, my DMM's uA port was fried on my last review, and I'm still waiting on a replacement. I do not expect there to be an issue though, given how low the previous two models performed:

SC52: 20.2 uA on Eneloop NiMH
SC51: 14.2 uA on Eneloop NiMH
Hello selfbuilt, let's find out about SC5 standby current drain some time. It's not a concern, just data for comparison against natural anodized competitors like the Manker T01 :D
 

selfbuilt

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Hello selfbuilt, let's find out about SC5 standby current drain some time.
That's a good idea, as I now have my replacement DMM. However, I just tried, and am not able to get a clear reading from my SC5. For some reason, the DMM readout keeps fluctuating, in the mid mA range, and won't settle down. The standby current must still be in the low uA range (otherwise, the reported runtimes on the low levels wouldn't be possible). Something must changed in how the circuit reacts to the tailcap, as it doesn't seem to like my DMM introduced into the loop, :thinking:

As anyone else reported tailcap draws from the SC5?
 

C.M.S

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Great review as always .
Time for me to add a SC5w to my collection or a SC600w mkIII Or both.:paypal:
 
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