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Thread: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

  1. #1
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    Default Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    I purchased a Nextorch Z1 1W LED light from Emilion (http://emilionworkshop.com/oscommerc...26c845988e1aa2) adn just received it this Saturday. Thus far, the Nextorch brand, aside from the Magic Max and recently the Saint HID, doesn't seem very popular or get much exposure on CPF even though there are many nice LED and Xenon models available. I decided to give the Nextorch Z1 a try.

    Summary of Nextorch Z1:
    Make - Nextorch
    Model - Z1
    Battery - 1x CR123A
    LED - LuxI
    Lens - Mineral Glass (Ultra Clear Lens according to Emilion's website)
    Finish - Black TypeII Anodize
    Dimensions - Approx. 3.94" x 1.06" (100mm x 27mm)
    Switch Type - Tactical momentary push on with constant on twist and LOTC
    Price - $37.95
    Delivery Time - 1 week exactly (shipped 5/13, received 5/20)

    The presentation box (picture below from Emilion's site) is a nice change from the standard plastic sealed packages most lights come in. It adds a touch of class. It comes with 1 Nextorch-brand CR123A cell. The foam in the box is cut out to fit the Z1. Very nice packaging and presentation overall.

    Exterior/Finish - The black TypeII finish is very even and nice. No missing areas of anodizing except at the edge of the tailcap (the end that faces the body of the light) where the anodizing is missing in some spots. The finish looks like it has a texture to it, but when you feel it, it's perfectly smooth. The machining is very nice, no rough areas, machine marks, etc. The knurling at the head and the tail provide very good grip for twisting. There's also some fins machined into the head for cooling, which I think adds to the aesthetics as well. The front bezel can be removed to access the lens. The reflector, which I believe is aluminum, is also exposed, but I can't seem to find a way to get it out. There's an o-ring between the bezel and the head and between the lens and the bezel, so the front end seems pretty well water resistant. The threading on the bezel is very, very, very (did I mention very?) tough! It was difficult to unthread and even harder to thread back on and get it all the way back down. While trying to thread the bezel back to the head, it often felt I cross threaded it, but I knew it wasn't. When not tightened all the way, the lens will rattle. I finally used a small strap wrench to get the bezel back down and all is well now (no rattles at all). Overall, aside from the small areas at the edge of the tailcap where anodizing is missing, the machining and finish is VERY good! Better than the Q3 and most Nuwai products I've seen.
    The switch threads on smoothly and the threads are wide cut and deep, similar to Streamlight, Pelican, SF, Pentagonlight, and other US mfrs. The switch is a metal spring attached to a spacer looking piece at the end of the tailcap. There's a rubber button at the back of the tailcap that you can push in, but it's fairly hard to push. The momentary contact of the switch actually uses the play in the threads rather than the motion in the push switch itself. Tho the push switch does move inward a bit, the whole tailcap will move first. Either way, the momentary works very well. Twist to turn on constant. 1 full turn from on will lock out the tailcap.
    The battery tube is fairly thick aluminum. The inner diameter (ID) of the tube is quite large and fits a Li-Ion R123A easily with still space to spare. It even fits a 17500 cell diameter wise, but the 17500 is too long to get the tailcap back on.
    Here's another pic stolen (hope you don't mind Emilion) from Emilion's site.


    Performance - The LED is a 1W. The tint looks very close to my TWOH in my Q3, so it's likely a WO tint. I loaded in a Streamlight CR123A, screwed the tailcap on, and BAM!...I was very surprised by the output! WAAAYYY brighter than I had expected. It was very close to my Q3 with TWOH on a primary cell. It's also extremely close to the overall output of my Streamlight Scorpion LED which puts out approximately 40lms. I estimate the total output to be 35-40lms, very bright and much brighter than a stock Q3 (which is only around 20-25lms). Again, I was very surprised by the output. The reflector is fairly large, larger than the Q3's reflector. The reflector is smooth also. This produces a fairly tight, small spot with very good side spill. The side spill is not as bright as my Q3-TWOH, but still a very useful spill. Because the hotspot is tight and small, it throws very well! Better than my Q3-TWOH on a primary and about equal to my Q3-TWOH on a R123A!!!...again, very good throw. It's a bit longer than the Q3, but not big. The overall diameter is about the same, so it doens't feel much bigger. It's easy to hold in your hand and the momentary on is great. I personally really like tactical switches (momentary push, constant twist) and the Z1 switch works very well and feels good. The beam is perfect with no artifacts at all. The LED is further up into the reflector than any of my other lights. This ends up producing a beam where no donut hole can be seen even at 1" from the wall.
    I put in a R123A and it worked fine, but I didn't keep it on for a long time. It did seem brighter with the R123A. I measured the current at the tailcap to be 583mA on my SL CR123A cell that read 2.998V open voltage. The LuxI is likely being driven at 500mA. Emilion's site estimates 75+min of runtime to 50% output...that sounds about right if not a bit conservative. I haven't tested runtime yet, but I estimate more like 90-110min to 50%.

    Overall, I'm very satisfied with the Nextorch Z1. The overall machining quality and finish is better than the Q3 and most other lights in this class. The light output, throw, good runtime, and virtually perfect beam is an amazing combination for the price. The ultra clear glass lens is also a very nice feature as my Q3's plastic lens is now quite scratched up. My original intent for the light was for my car, but now I feel bad not using it more often. But at least I know I will have a great light with a reliable switch for use when I need it in my car.
    JSR
    Streamlight: TL-3 Xenon, Vital Stream Scorpion-FB1, Scorpion LED SSC P4, KeyMate Silver (Nichia CS)
    Nuwai: 2x QIII TWOH (Green and Titanium), TM-313X Ti (QV1J DD 14500)
    Surefire: M2+C2-HA+Detonator, E2D, VG FB1+EXe, VG FB3+E2C+C2
    Vital Gear F2, Huntlight FT01, Jetbeam Jet1 AA and 123A, Fenix E1 (Silver), Luxogen LR5A-3W & LR12 CR2 (SCC P4), Spiderfire LR8, NexTorch Z1, Gerber Infinity Ultra (2x Green), Dae's UV 12LED
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  2. #2
    Flashaholic* Kryosphinx's Avatar
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    Nice review!
    Got busted lights? Send me a PM and depending on the situation, I'll take 'em off your hands. I always like a good modding challenge.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    Thanks for the review.
    The Z1 looks interesting. How does it compare to the JetI (I assume it's listed
    in your signature b/c you have one?)?

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    Wow, responses!...sorry, just a bit surprised because my reviews typically get no responses.

    owenbright - yes, I have a Jet1 with both the AA and 123A battery tubes. The Jet1 with either tube is smaller, but the Nextorch Z1 is easy to hold. It isn't too big or too small and the tactical tailswitch is easy to activate (and the lock-out feature really works) so you don't have to push on it too hard to turn it on (other lights, I have to push so hard, I start to push the light out of my hands). In terms of brightness, here's how I'd rate them:

    Nextorch Z1 - About 35lms on primary 123A. About 40-45lms on R123A (not hugely brighter, just a bit more noticably brighter).
    Jet1 on Alkaline AA - Not sure how many lumens as I use my Scorpion LED to compare output (which I assume as 40lms). The Nextorch Z1 is much brighter tho!
    Jet1 on Primary 123A - About 45-50lms. Not as bright as my modded-Q3 which I assume is about 50-55lms. Similar to the Nextorch Z1 on R123As.
    Jet1 on Li-Ion 14500 - Bright!...I'd estimate about 65-70lms. Noticably brighter than my modded-Q3.

    The Jet1 on a primary 123A drives the LED harder than the Nextorch Z1 on a primary 123A, so the Z1 will outlast the Jet1. A bit less light when both are on primaries, but it's still very bright. It will outthrow the Jet1. Spill is brighter on the Jet1, but still very useful on the Z1. The Z1's finish was more even than the Jet1's, despite the few missing areas of anodizing at the edge of the tailcap (edge closest to battery tube, not the button end). I was surprised at the build and mfr'ing quality of the Nextorch...nice products and lower price than SF, SL, Pentagon, and Pelican.
    Streamlight: TL-3 Xenon, Vital Stream Scorpion-FB1, Scorpion LED SSC P4, KeyMate Silver (Nichia CS)
    Nuwai: 2x QIII TWOH (Green and Titanium), TM-313X Ti (QV1J DD 14500)
    Surefire: M2+C2-HA+Detonator, E2D, VG FB1+EXe, VG FB3+E2C+C2
    Vital Gear F2, Huntlight FT01, Jetbeam Jet1 AA and 123A, Fenix E1 (Silver), Luxogen LR5A-3W & LR12 CR2 (SCC P4), Spiderfire LR8, NexTorch Z1, Gerber Infinity Ultra (2x Green), Dae's UV 12LED
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  5. #5
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    Cool. Thanks for the details.
    It sounds like a cool light. Probably more comparable to Fenix P1?
    This one got my attention b/c I was looking around for a single 123A light.. and
    Z1 has a switch that allows momentary-on use.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    jsr,
    I just saw your other review (P1 vs Jetbeam).
    HA! I didn't realize you also had the P1.

    Could you tell me how the Z1 compares to P1? Thanks.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    owenbright - Yeah, I just got my P1 this past Friday. A very nice light. Picking between the P1 and Jet1 during the Jet1's presale price, I'd pick the Jet1. But, since the Jet1 presale is over and you now have to buy a Jet AA + 123A tube, if you only wanted a 123A light, then the P1 is the definite winner in price-per-performance ratio.
    In terms of performance, yes, I'd say the Nextorch Z1 is more comparable to a Fenix P1. The Jet1 is just extremely bright and blows both away in output. To compare output, here's a summary:

    Primary 123A - Z1 ~35+lms, P1 ~35-40ms. I didn't do a direct comparison, but I'll do one tonight if I remember (I have a late appointment tonight, so I might be a bit drained afterwards...if I forget, remind me tomorrow). Nextorch claims 35lms for the Z1 and I'm surprised it lived up to its claim.
    Li-Ion R123A - Z1 ~40-45lms, P1 ~45-50lms. 5lms is difficult to notice (which explains why I turn each light on and off about 10-20 times and stay in the room comparing for quite a while). Again, I'll try to do a direct comparison tonight.

    Overall though, I'd say the performance of the Z1 and P1 would be close enough that you would not be able to tell the difference without directly comparing them at the same time. For throw, the Z1 outthrows the P1, but should since it has a much larger reflector.
    The biggest diff would be the size. The P1 is 2.5"x0.8" while the Z1 is 3.94"x1.06". The Z1's considerably larger. Again, it's not difficult to hold, actually, I'd say it's more comfortable to hold. The P1 (and Jet1 123A) is so small, I sometimes feel I don't have as good a grasp on it as I do the Z1. I don't feel like I'd drop them, just that they're really small. The Z1 does have the advantage of a tactical switch. I, too, like the momentary feature. I've seen Nextorch's get advertised as having HAIII by some of their retailers. I haven't been able to confirm this by speaking to any retailer tho. I'm curious to know. There's a Nextorch retailer online, supposedly the US Nextorch dealer, at www.nextorchflashlights.com . I tried calling their 800 number, but I get the message that my area isn't allowed to call that number. I can't any other contact info on them tho. If you can give them a call and ask about HAIII if you get thru, I'd appreciate it.
    I think the main deciding factor for you would be the size vs. momentary trade-off. Which do you care more about?

    I just added the P1 to my sig. Let me know if you have questions on any other lights I own. Not an impressive collection (Jet1 is my priciest light), but I like 'em.
    Last edited by jsr; 06-05-2006 at 04:32 PM.
    Streamlight: TL-3 Xenon, Vital Stream Scorpion-FB1, Scorpion LED SSC P4, KeyMate Silver (Nichia CS)
    Nuwai: 2x QIII TWOH (Green and Titanium), TM-313X Ti (QV1J DD 14500)
    Surefire: M2+C2-HA+Detonator, E2D, VG FB1+EXe, VG FB3+E2C+C2
    Vital Gear F2, Huntlight FT01, Jetbeam Jet1 AA and 123A, Fenix E1 (Silver), Luxogen LR5A-3W & LR12 CR2 (SCC P4), Spiderfire LR8, NexTorch Z1, Gerber Infinity Ultra (2x Green), Dae's UV 12LED
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    jsr, thanks for kindly giving me detailed info.
    I called the 800 number and I get a lady's voice saying WC01 something and says that
    the number is not available from my calling area.
    From your description, I think the nextorch will work a lot better for me as long as
    the regulation is good. It's also cheaper
    I guess I can try emailing them about it.

    So many lights use reversie clickies and unless they are really cheap, I don't think
    I'll be buying any. I do already have a Jet-I AA though. B/c It's a reverse clicky,
    I tried it for a few seconds and havne't used it at all. I would have sold it, but since
    the 2-stage is going to be a standard switch, I'm gonna wait to see if it's high-low-off
    rather than low-high-off. In the latter case, I'll be putting this light up for sale
    eventhough it's REALLY NICE.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    owenbright - Did some comparisons between the Z1 and P1 last night. As I thought, total output is about the same between the two on both primary and Li-Ion cells. I'd estimate about 35-40lms on primary, and 45-50lms on R123As depending on state of charge. Both are bright and the difference is very, very difficult to distinguish, especially when considering the tint difference. My Z1 is noticably whiter than my P1, leaning slightly toward green...looks like a W0 tint or possibly a slightly green X0 tint.

    I also prefer standard clickies, or a simple tactical style switch, but reverse clickies don't bother me too much. I'm pretty sure tho the 2-stage clickie for the Jet1 will be low-high-off. The feedback from most CPFers is that they use low the most on their multi-level lights and thus don't want/need it to start on high.

    I couldn't find an email on that Nextorchflashlights.com site. Where did you find it? I got the same message as you when I called.
    Streamlight: TL-3 Xenon, Vital Stream Scorpion-FB1, Scorpion LED SSC P4, KeyMate Silver (Nichia CS)
    Nuwai: 2x QIII TWOH (Green and Titanium), TM-313X Ti (QV1J DD 14500)
    Surefire: M2+C2-HA+Detonator, E2D, VG FB1+EXe, VG FB3+E2C+C2
    Vital Gear F2, Huntlight FT01, Jetbeam Jet1 AA and 123A, Fenix E1 (Silver), Luxogen LR5A-3W & LR12 CR2 (SCC P4), Spiderfire LR8, NexTorch Z1, Gerber Infinity Ultra (2x Green), Dae's UV 12LED
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  10. #10
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    very cool! Thanks a lot for comparing them.
    Actually, I wanted to email them, but I realized that there's no email address
    listed and of course their phone # doesn't work.
    I wonder if anyone's ordered from them. I might give it a shot.

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    owenbright - let me know how it goes if you end up ordering from them. Maybe your receipt/shipping invoice will have a contact number.
    Streamlight: TL-3 Xenon, Vital Stream Scorpion-FB1, Scorpion LED SSC P4, KeyMate Silver (Nichia CS)
    Nuwai: 2x QIII TWOH (Green and Titanium), TM-313X Ti (QV1J DD 14500)
    Surefire: M2+C2-HA+Detonator, E2D, VG FB1+EXe, VG FB3+E2C+C2
    Vital Gear F2, Huntlight FT01, Jetbeam Jet1 AA and 123A, Fenix E1 (Silver), Luxogen LR5A-3W & LR12 CR2 (SCC P4), Spiderfire LR8, NexTorch Z1, Gerber Infinity Ultra (2x Green), Dae's UV 12LED
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  12. #12
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    If outputs are about the same, the P1 would seem to have the edge in efficiency. I think the P1 runs flat for about 120 minutes on a CR123 while this is claimed to run 75 minutes.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    I've also seen claims of 95min for the Z1, but yes, the P1 likely has a more efficient driver. I'll try a runtime test on the Z1 sometime, but I don't have any light measurement equipment. Currently, it sits in my daily driver, but I plan on moving it to a BOB later.
    Streamlight: TL-3 Xenon, Vital Stream Scorpion-FB1, Scorpion LED SSC P4, KeyMate Silver (Nichia CS)
    Nuwai: 2x QIII TWOH (Green and Titanium), TM-313X Ti (QV1J DD 14500)
    Surefire: M2+C2-HA+Detonator, E2D, VG FB1+EXe, VG FB3+E2C+C2
    Vital Gear F2, Huntlight FT01, Jetbeam Jet1 AA and 123A, Fenix E1 (Silver), Luxogen LR5A-3W & LR12 CR2 (SCC P4), Spiderfire LR8, NexTorch Z1, Gerber Infinity Ultra (2x Green), Dae's UV 12LED
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  14. #14
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    Anybody got runtime graphs on the Z1 yet? I looked on flashlightreviews and struck out. Is this light regulated for real, or is it pseudo-regulated?
    --Vic
    Spark headlamp,712-L headlamp,D25c mini,Fenix PD35, E+Lite, Zipka, Novatac 85T.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    Vic - I haven't done testing, but the Z1 should be pretty well regulated. Most lower-priced (lower than SF and custom or low production stuff) have voltage regulation instead of current regulation. Voltage regulation can be very solid and flat as long as the current drain can be supported by the battery. The Z1 doesn't draw huge amounts of current so the 123A should be able to supply the current easily enough to allow the driver to stay in regulation. I'm pretty sure the Fenix P1, tho it has a great discharge curve, is only voltage regulated. Voltage regulation only really suffers on very high current draw lights or alkaline lights.
    Streamlight: TL-3 Xenon, Vital Stream Scorpion-FB1, Scorpion LED SSC P4, KeyMate Silver (Nichia CS)
    Nuwai: 2x QIII TWOH (Green and Titanium), TM-313X Ti (QV1J DD 14500)
    Surefire: M2+C2-HA+Detonator, E2D, VG FB1+EXe, VG FB3+E2C+C2
    Vital Gear F2, Huntlight FT01, Jetbeam Jet1 AA and 123A, Fenix E1 (Silver), Luxogen LR5A-3W & LR12 CR2 (SCC P4), Spiderfire LR8, NexTorch Z1, Gerber Infinity Ultra (2x Green), Dae's UV 12LED
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  16. #16
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    Default Re: Review - Nextorch Z1 LED

    Quote Originally Posted by jsr View Post
    owenbright - Did some comparisons between the Z1 and P1 last night. As I thought, total output is about the same between the two on both primary and Li-Ion cells. I'd estimate about 35-40lms on primary, and 45-50lms on R123As depending on state of charge. Both are bright and the difference is very, very difficult to distinguish, especially when considering the tint difference. My Z1 is noticably whiter than my P1, leaning slightly toward green...looks like a W0 tint or possibly a slightly green X0 tint.

    I also prefer standard clickies, or a simple tactical style switch, but reverse clickies don't bother me too much. I'm pretty sure tho the 2-stage clickie for the Jet1 will be low-high-off. The feedback from most CPFers is that they use low the most on their multi-level lights and thus don't want/need it to start on high.

    I couldn't find an email on that Nextorchflashlights.com site. Where did you find it? I got the same message as you when I called.
    I just had a chance to own and use NexTorch T6A recently, in many of my night patrols. The xenon output claimed seems brighter than 80L. Great penetrating beam. Built is very good, rugged and very dependable. Nice looking too. I should have found this brand before I went to SF 6P. Now I have more of this brand than others, in various models. Try the T6A Hunting Set with rat tail, weapon mount, etc. Oops.. forgot to mention that I walked the jungle streams with this T6A submerged in about 1 metre deep of running water for more than 20 minutes with no leak problem at all.
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