FourSevens        
Results 1 to 25 of 25

Thread: Single-AA LED flashlight

  1. #1
    Flashaholic* Fallingwater's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Trieste, Italy
    Posts
    3,323

    Default Single-AA LED flashlight

    I've been looking to get myself a single-AA regulated flashlight.
    The one I'm after is the old CMG/Berger Infinity Ultra. I've been searching for it for a while, but only now I've found a store that actually sells them here where I am.
    Now, before I go and plunk down the money, is there anything significantly better that will make me regret buying it? I dunno, something with a better LED, or regulator or... anything?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    Fenix L1, L1P.
    - uses 1xAA
    - regulated
    - uses R bin 1 W LED (L1P only)
    - HA III (L1P --- L1 has HA II)


    CMG Infinity has been rendered extinct by this light.

    Doug
    *****************************************
    A light on a shelf collects dust, A light in your hand collects the darkness.
    *****************************************

  3. #3
    Flashaholic* Fallingwater's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Trieste, Italy
    Posts
    3,323

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    The Fenix L1/L1P is a 1W Luxeon.
    The Infinity Ultra has a peak run time of 25 hours running from a brand name AA, followed by many more hours at reduced brightness. With the same cell, the Fenix has a 2 hour peak run time and a 4 hour total running time including reduced output.
    Since I'm planning to run the light as inexpensively as I can (read: supercheap asian carbon-zinc cells that are doing their best to look like Duracells) this is important. I'm counting on one of them to give me about 5, maybe 6 hours of peak brightness from an Infinity Ultra, and a total time of maybe 12 hours. In reality, after the 5-6 hours have passed, it'll probably find a new home in a wall clock or remote control. If I use one of those in a Fenix L1, it will probably die in less than half an hour.

    It's certainly an impressive light, and I may well buy one in the future (and run it from proper alkalines, or maybe NiMH rechargeables), but it seems to me that it's not in the same territory as the Infinity Ultra.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    You might consider a Peak Kilmanjaro. I got 55 hours from a new Duracell, using a standard CMG with a fresh cell to compare. At 55 hours, it was just barely dimmer. Much brighter for most of the time. Mine is an Ultra, and you'd get even more runtime from a High Output.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    The CMG Infinity Ultra is discontinued and somewhat scarce, though you can find them on BST sometimes. It's replaced by the Gerber version which is a new design that in the opinion of most is a downgrade from the old one. It's still a good light but the old one was better. One point in favor of the new one is it's easier to mod, such as to replace the led. You can get the new one from www.countycomm.com or www.batterystation.com among others.

    Either version of the Ultra is a long-running light that's bright enough for most close range use (walking around in the dark, fixing something) and that runs a long time on any random AA cell and is very rugged. It runs for a solid 12-14 hours on an alkaline AA ("25 hours" is exaggeration).

    The Fenix is not in the same class with the Ultra. It tries to be as bright as possible for a 1AA light. It needs at minimum alkaline batteries and really prefers to run on NiMH rechargeables or lithium AA's. It's about 10x as bright as the Ultra but it only runs for maybe 1 hour on an alkaline or 2 hours on a NiMH or a bit longer on a lithium. In my opinion it's not as rugged as the Ultra (especially the old Ultra) but it's not bad.

    Anyway, get the Ultra if you want a utility light that's very versatile and bright enough for most purposes. Get the Fenix if you want a pocket rocket. Or as the CPF motto says, "buy both".

    A possible alternative to the Ultra is the Peak Kilimanjaro series, http://www.peakledsolutions.com . These are sort of "deluxe" Ultra-like lights that are a lot more expensive. Whether they're worth it is up to you.

    As we like to say, welcome to CPF and hang on to your wallet .

  6. #6
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    NW FL
    Posts
    1,092

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    Another option is the Nuwai .5W 1XAA light form Advancedmart. There's a few models of 1XAA lights at the AdvancedMart site...look for the keychain model. It looks to be right up your alley: just a hair longer than an Infinity Ultra, with MUCH more output!

    PJD
    Seize the day!

  7. #7
    Flashaholic* Fallingwater's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Trieste, Italy
    Posts
    3,323

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    Why is the Gerber considered a downgrade?
    Since you mention it, would it make it noticeably better if I modded it and replaced its LED with a Nichia CS (as per the other thread)? Or am I making too big a deal out of the whole CS thing?

    I like the Peak Kilmanjaro, but it's too expensive for what it is. $35 for a 1AA light is too much.
    I like the Nuwai .5W even more (if I understand correctly the Nuwai already uses a CS led), but it'd probably be very hard to get hold of them here where I live (Trieste, Italy, in case you're interested).

    I'll probably buy a Fenix L1 in the future, but right now I don't really have a need for it.

  8. #8
    Flashaholic
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Singapore
    Posts
    221

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    How about killing two birds with one stone? Get the L1P and do the two-stage mod. You can even choose your resistance to vary your low output. Runtime would be higher but i don't really know by how much though...

  9. #9

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    fallingwater,
    From what it sounds like the purposes that you want the light for, fit's exactly with what the light was made for, and at 15.00 USD. you can't go wrong. If you mod the light to a newer LED, you "might" change the amount of light per battery. I would leave it as is and enjoy the light as it was intended for.

    The reason people say it is a downgrade, is the orginal was near indistructable, with a really good tail lug. and there was no plastic anywhere, since being bought out the "quality" has changed and the water integrety has also, but alas I can't dive anymore so 10ft works for me..lol


    enjoy the light.
    Doug
    *****************************************
    A light on a shelf collects dust, A light in your hand collects the darkness.
    *****************************************

  10. #10
    Flashaholic* parnass's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Illinois, USA
    Posts
    2,541

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    Fallingwater,

    My criteria for buying a flashlight was the same as yours -- long, long AA battery life.

    I like the Gerber Infinity Ultra and use it every night. It is not my brightest light, but it is rugged and the batteries seem to last forever, which is one of your criteria.

    I have easily powered the Gerber Infinity Ultra using batteries which were too weak to run clocks, radios, etc. If a battery is too weak for the Ultra, I doubt it has enough voltage to power anything else useful.

  11. #11
    Flashaholic* ledaholic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Central Tx
    Posts
    535

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    How about the Terralux Chromestar? 8 hours on a lithium, not quite as bright as a Phenix L1P, but much brighter than an Infinity Ultra in almost the same package.

  12. #12
    Flashaholic Learjet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Mackay QLD Australia
    Posts
    436

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    Also the Ghost2. About 8 hours burn time on a AA.

  13. #13
    Flashaholic* Fallingwater's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Trieste, Italy
    Posts
    3,323

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    Quote Originally Posted by diggdug13
    If you mod the light to a newer LED, you "might" change the amount of light per battery. I would leave it as is and enjoy the light as it was intended for
    It's the tinkerer blood that's in me that prevents me from leaving anything I touch in its stock form
    I was under the impression that the CS leds consumed just as much power as standard leds, but were considerably brighter. Rip old led out, solder CS in, enjoy exact same battery consumption with 2x brightness. Have I been misled? And if I have, is there significant difference in power consumption between the two kinds?

    The reason people say it is a downgrade, is the orginal was near indistructable, with a really good tail lug. and there was no plastic anywhere, since being bought out the "quality" has changed and the water integrety has also, but alas I can't dive anymore so 10ft works for me
    Eh. As long as it can be kept together with duct tape it's fine for me.

    The Chromestar appears to be unregulated, and it's a luxeon anyway.
    Which brand is the Ghost2?
    Last edited by Fallingwater; 12-20-2005 at 08:14 AM.

  14. #14
    Flashaholic Learjet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Location
    Mackay QLD Australia
    Posts
    436

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    The Ghost2 is from AdvancedMart. I picked one up from ebay for 1c but the freight was $10.

    http://www.flashlightreviews.com/rev...art_ghost2.htm

  15. #15
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Okla, USA
    Posts
    844

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    I wouldn't mind the relatively short runtime of the Fenix L1P. You can find no-name brand AA's really cheap at local stores, or even use NiMh rechargeables. Home Depot has a 36 pack of Alkaline AA's for $9.99.
    Fenix L1P, L2D CE, L0P SE, Zebralight Q5 CREE headlamp, Huntlight ft02x, Tikka XP, PT Aurora & Eclipse 2, SL ProPoly 4aa Lux and Twintask 1L, Inova X1, Dorcy 1aaa, MagLED 2AA, Nuwai HLX-712L, Akoray K-106 AA, Rayovac 1AA headlamp.

  16. #16

    Lightbulb Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    Fallingwater wrote: "I've been looking to get myself a single-AA regulated flashlight."

    Just a small point of clarification.

    "Regulation" is often not clear.

    When CPF talks of a "Regulated" light it normally means that there is a circuit that maintains constant brightness levels until the battery(s) drop below a certain level.

    However single battery lights like a single AA have to use a DC-DC step-up circuit - and this is also often called "regulated" even though it does NOT maintain constant brightness. So for clarification CPF calls these "semi-regulated" as the step-up circuit does show some benefits in somewhat more level output than a simple direct drive where the battery (alkaline) run-down curve can be more pronounced.

    So I do not think any of the lights cited so far are Regulated in the true sense as understood here on CPF (including some that actually claim to be regulated). They are all "semi-regulated" in that they have (to have) DC-DC step-up circuits.

    Anyway back to the lights - I like these single AA -
    (all linked reviews with side-by-side comparison beamshots)

    Fenix L1 v2.5

    0.5w 1AA - AdvancedMart LED-005S

    8LED 1AA "Xnova" New

    If it's of any interest -

    Form-Factor, Size, Ergonomics

  17. #17
    Farewell our Curmudgeon Administrator Roy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Granbury, Tx USA
    Posts
    4,466

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    The use of a L91 or Battery Station lithium AA battery will help any 1xAA flashlight act more like a fully regulated light.
    Bright...Small...Long Runtime.......You can have any two but NOT all three!

  18. #18
    Flashaholic* cratz2's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Central IN
    Posts
    3,942

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    Well, if he wants long runtime, why not try to get that for him, guys?

    I mean, the Fenix is a very nice light and runs on uber cheap AA cells but if I was going to be up in the hills for an evening and could only have one light and one cell, I'd much rather have the Ultra than the Fenix. Having said that, if you're around town or within a building, it's not really that much of a challenge to have maybe 4 spare NiMH cells.

    Anyway, back to the Ultra. I still use mine quite a bit though a modded Minimag has replaced it for my uses. Speaking of which, on the topic of which LED to use... there is no doubt that the CS will make the Ultra brighter but the CS isn't really a pretty LED. There are beam issues and color issues and of those are important to you, you might want to at least consider using either one of the Peak Snow 29 LEDs or maybe even one of KevinL's 35k LEDs. Both are very nice at 3.7ish volts and 30-50ma. The CS really comes into its own when significantly over-driving it as it seems to hold up better than many of the oher bare LEDs out there when driven to 70 to 100ma or over 4 'real' volts (as opposed to button cell volts).

    I have no doubt that if you don't have unrealistic expectations, you should be quite happy with the Ultra, esp modded with one of the brighter LEDs. Just keep in mind that the swap is a bit more difficult than a lot of other lights.

    Just to throw another light out there, the Nuwai TL-317X is a 2 stage light that runs on a single AA cell and has an LED 'similar' to the MJLED. This light has 2 stages of output and the high setting gives about 5 hours to 50% brightness. I never measured it, but the low setting should give closer to 20 hours. Not too shabby and on high, I'd imagine this would be quite a bit brighter than the CS-modded Ultra. Actually, when both are using alkaline cells, the Nuwai on low looks brighter than the stock Ultra though the Ultra has that really nice WIDE spillbeam.
    "That's what makes SF so badass... we've got the best flashlights."

  19. #19

    Popcorn Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    Quote Originally Posted by ledaholic
    How about the Terralux Chromestar? 8 hours on a lithium, not quite as bright as a Phenix L1P, but much brighter than an Infinity Ultra in almost the same package.
    Alright I snapped one of those up from brightguy.com. for over $40 delivered it is a beautiful chrome light. beefy hole for keychain attachment. it is brighter than the Infinity, as a matter of fact I have the two resting side by side. I have not owned a PEAK yet but that anticipated "ocean" on an AA looks good as does those improved Matterhorn single AAA "Arc AAA P" insipred lights. for brightness get the FENIX; although you make a good point about run time w/ the Infinity .

  20. #20
    Flashaholic* Fallingwater's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Trieste, Italy
    Posts
    3,323

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    Quote Originally Posted by cratz2
    I mean, the Fenix is a very nice light and runs on uber cheap AA cells but if I was going to be up in the hills for an evening and could only have one light and one cell, I'd much rather have the Ultra than the Fenix. Having said that, if you're around town or within a building, it's not really that much of a challenge to have maybe 4 spare NiMH cells.
    As I said, I like the Fenix very much, and since I like big cities and don't really like life in the outdoors, the availability of alkaline or NiMH AAs isn't a problem.
    But I don't need that bright a light. It's going to be used mostly for working around electronic equipment and such, and a superbright light such as the Fenix would just ruin vision. And since I have a thing for efficiency, the thought of running a light for hours from a single cheap AA is very appealing to me.
    I don't, strictly speaking, need any other light, since the two supercheap chinese lights I have pretty much accomplish the task. But they require 3 AAs one and 3 AAAs the other, are small but not very comfortable to carry around, have heads made up of multiple cheapo low efficiency LEDs and feel rickety and unreliable and... well, let's face the truth, I really fancy a new toy. :P

    there is no doubt that the CS will make the Ultra brighter but the CS isn't really a pretty LED. There are beam issues and color issues
    Well, as long as I'm not going to get awful beam distortion and really ludicrous color I don't care if it's slightly bluish or whatever.

    I have no doubt that if you don't have unrealistic expectations, you should be quite happy with the Ultra, esp modded with one of the brighter LEDs. Just keep in mind that the swap is a bit more difficult than a lot of other lights
    Thanks... I'm not scared of a bit of a challenge I just hope I don't end up borking the light...

  21. #21
    Flashaholic*
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Sector ZZ9 Plural Z Alpha, Earth, USA, New England
    Posts
    927

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    if you're looking for a long-running battery-sipping 1 AA light, how about the Inova X1, i think it gets around 10 hours off a battery, however it does have a very tightly focused beam, it has literaly *no* sidespill, when Inova says it's a spotlight, they *mean* *spot*light

  22. #22
    *Flashaholic* CLHC's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    PNW|WA|USA
    Posts
    6,005

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    I had that GIU LED light. It looks well built and all with a solid metal clip that embraces it. Gave it to my mom since the light output is too dim for my tired eyes. But to be sure, it does light up well in complete darkness. It has a nice circular side spill with no "floaties" or uggs—other than that "purple" hotspot if you will. Maybe upgrading the LED in it as mentioned above will do the trick!

    Anyhow, hope you find what you're looking for and Enjoy!
    LUX'Ottica

  23. #23

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    another little light not getting as much respect as it should so im gonna start a thread on it. anyway you probably know which one it is that i've been raving about for a few days now and this is the Coast Led Lenser Digi-Tac I (David 15). some features not as good as the fenix (water resistance, throw, spillbeam), many others superior (much longer runtime with flatter output, deeper more 'grippier' knurling, nicer positive momentary clickie, more efficient circuit). Consider this light as well

  24. #24

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    time will tell about that led lenser coast light. on ouer side many have made bad experiences with that brand lights. they look good but wont work for long, cheap chinese made inside.

    what is with upgrade the gerber infinity with an brighter white led? witch one is the brightest and where to get it?
    then the reflector needs to be high mirror polished and the clip slightly rebend that it holds stronger and the treads lubed and your ready.

    the one i have is 2.5 times brighter and runtime around 25 houers.

    only the finish is not that scratch resistant, if you dont want see scratches get an silver one...

  25. #25

    Default Re: Single-AA LED flashlight

    ummm ok well it's still superior in many ways chinese made or not oh and isnt the FENIX chinese made??? won't work for long? the switch has been used more on the Coast than the Fenix and the Coast's is still working perfectly. The Fenix switch on the other hand is beginning to flicker on me... *subtle chuckle*
    Last edited by L.E.D.; 12-21-2005 at 01:22 PM.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •