Zebralight SC52 (XM-L, 1xAA, 1x14500) Review: RUNTIMES, BEAMSHOTS, VIDEO and more!

markr6

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YEAH! Lot's of pre-order discussion on the SC52 & SC52w thread. Myself included! Can't wait!
 

SwordEdge

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Hi cpfers!

just wanted to share a detail about the sc52 you'll probably come across if you own one

I noticed the turbo mode on the sc52 (500 lumen, 1 min) is quite demanding on the li-ion cell, easily 2c if not more. If you have cells like mine, which are tired even when fully recharged, you will have a voltage drop below 3.1v during the turbo (or if your cell is partially discharged too). So you will experiment a shorter turbo, with step down to medium instead of the usual 280 lumen H1. Didn't quite understand it first, but with the voltmeter now I do, kinda make sense. Guess it's time to buy new 14500's.

cheers.. : )
 

Colonel Sanders

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Hi cpfers!

just wanted to share a detail about the sc52 you'll probably come across if you own one

I noticed the turbo mode on the sc52 (500 lumen, 1 min) is quite demanding on the li-ion cell, easily 2c if not more. If you have cells like mine, which are tired even when fully recharged, you will have a voltage drop below 3.1v during the turbo (or if your cell is partially discharged too). So you will experiment a shorter turbo, with step down to medium instead of the usual 280 lumen H1. Didn't quite understand it first, but with the voltmeter now I do, kinda make sense. Guess it's time to buy new 14500's.

cheers.. : )

If the 500L mode is something you plan to use a lot, perhaps an IMR cell would be a good choice.

I wonder what the current is at that level? I agree, it's gotta be pushing a 14500 pretty hard. Who's checked the current on this light?
 

Colonel Sanders

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Thanks, Mark. You know you want to check it again at 4.2v. :poke: My guess is it'll show a lower current at 4.2v. I'll go with 1.65a. That would be about 2c for the highest capacity 14500s.
 

mactavish

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Great review! Love my SC51 (don't understand why more people don't own Zebralights) and will seriously consider upgrading to the SC52 as soon as they put the XM-L2 in it.

As most of you may know, the XM-L2 is available. Just ordered one, not sure why the specs for the Neutral White LED are the same as for the cool one, usually the warmer LED's are slightly less lumens spec wise?
 

selfbuilt

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As most of you may know, the XM-L2 is available. Just ordered one, not sure why the specs for the Neutral White LED are the same as for the cool one, usually the warmer LED's are slightly less lumens spec wise?
Typically yes, but that's highly variable. For example, when the XM-L2s first came out, T6 neutral whites were common (along with T6 and U2 cool whites). I've seen reports of neutral white U2 bins more recently ... so it is possible that common specs could be accurate for both. I have no specific knowledge in this case, however.
 

mactavish

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Typically yes, but that's highly variable. For example, when the XM-L2s first came out, T6 neutral whites were common (along with T6 and U2 cool whites). I've seen reports of neutral white U2 bins more recently ... so it is possible that common specs could be accurate for both. I have no specific knowledge in this case, however.

thanks "selfbuilt", always nice hearing from a review master! I took delivery of both the Zebralight SC52w & the Eagletac D25A XM-L2 U2 "cool bulb" the same day have not had time to do any simple light meter tests. But with both lights in their short run time highest output settings (direct drive?), visually by eye, the new LED's seem to be close in output, just different in color temperature. Very nice indeed.
 

icharry

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Great review. I bought it because I gave my Mom my Four7's Quark which was my 1st purchase and I really liked it. Then I wanted more so I got the hybrid power Nitecore MH1A which I ended up HATING. Turning the head to change light levels basically just unscrewed the head 80% of the time. The cover for the USB was also poorly designed. Moonlight was too bright. So based on this review I got the Zebralight SC52 - GREAT LIGHT. I LOVE IT. Small, bright, easy to use. Probably the perfect light for me. THANKS Mr. Selfbuilt.
 

T0rch

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Thank Selfbuilt. Really been enjoying your reviews, and this review convinced me to order up a SC52. Had mine for about a week now and am loving it. Compact, bright, and I really like Zebralight's interface. Definitely will be trying out more of their products, looking forward to see what you think of the SC600w Mk II.
 

selfbuilt

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Definitely will be trying out more of their products, looking forward to see what you think of the SC600w Mk II.
Yes, I am planning to review the SC600-II, with the new XM-L2 (standard cool white version though). A couple of other reviews to get finished first, though.

And :welcome:
 

aberson

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sc52 with Alkalines - bad idea?

Hi folks
Great thread here, thanks selfbuilt for all the data! I've been lusting after the sc52w for a little while now. I have LSD NIMH, but I occasionally need to rely on alkalines for stretches of time and don't want to make a mistake in upgrading.

Is there anyone who routinely runs the sc52 on alkalines? Any qualitative real world feedback?


After reading things and crunching the numbers, I realize that the sc52's performance on alkalines is quite crummy, especially in H1 and H2A. A severe drop in brightness after 10 minutes is not very usable, though it's understandable due to the very high current drawn from that single AA. (This issue is less severe on my Quark AA-2 XP-G R5 where currents are lower)

In reality, I probably would spend most time in H2B and lower brightnesses, where the currents are much more within the capabilities of alkalines. So perhaps this issue wouldn't affect me very much, but I'd benefit from the option of those higher levels for short bursts when I might need them. In any case, I'd be curious to hear from people who've played with this in real life.

Thanks!
Adam

Adam please do not change the thread title - Norm
 
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selfbuilt

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After reading things and crunching the numbers, I realize that the sc52's performance on alkalines is quite crummy, especially in H1 and H2A. A severe drop in brightness after 10 minutes is not very usable, though it's understandable due to the very high current drawn from that single AA. (This issue is less severe on my Quark AA-2 XP-G R5 where currents are lower)
Not sure how many response you are going to get (other than the general recommendation not use alkalines). :whistle: Given the quality and price, I doubt many here are running their SC52s on alkaline cells.

But as my runtimes show, it is an outstanding performer on what I refer to as H2B. I am confident it would likely do quite well at the lower levels as well. As long as you plan to skip the higher two levels (for anything other than momentary use), I think it would be a very good choice for alkaline.

And :welcome:
 

aberson

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Adam please do not change the thread title - Norm

Oh crap - sorry Norm! I thought I was just setting a subject for *my* post (some forums have that). Thanks for fixing

Thanks for the confirmation of my analysis, selfbuilt. Maybe it will be an sc52w birthday for me.
 

KITROBASKIN

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Yes, I am planning to review the SC600-II, with the new XM-L2 (standard cool white version though). A couple of other reviews to get finished first, though.

Perhaps you will be reviewing the SC62 in the future? That and the SC600w-L2 are the choices I'll be looking at. The SC52 has its place no doubt, just want to get away from the green and have more runtime.
 

Dr.444

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Thanks Bro for another Awesome Review .... :) So ... is the Flicker Issue on 14500 fixed yet ? also, XM-L2 Cool White version anytime soon ?
 

selfbuilt

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Thanks Bro for another Awesome Review .... :) So ... is the Flicker Issue on 14500 fixed yet ? also, XM-L2 Cool White version anytime soon ?
It's been a long time since this review, and I haven't heard of any issues since the original launch. You should be go on that front ... don't know about XM-L2 update, but I presume one would be coming at some point. You would need to check with ZL.
 

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