ZeroAir Reviews: Lumintop EDC25 (18650, XP-L v5, on-board charging )

Preface

I have long asked GearBest for more Lumintop lights and Kathy came through for me. This Lumintop EDC25 Is the first of two from this brand that I’ll be reviewing, with the SD26 coming up soon.


Official Specs and Features

Versions

There’s just this one version.

MSRP

This light currently goes for $65.90 on the official amazon.com store.


Short Review

The EDC25 has great build quality and a great set of features. There’s a fair amount of competition in this class light, so if this light has the particular emitter you like, it’s a great choice.

Long Review

What’s Included

  • Lumintop EDC25
  • Micro-USB cable
  • (Orange!!) Lanyard
  • Pocket clip
  • Spare o-rings (2)
  • Spare tail click boot
  • Carry pouch
  • Manual

20170304-IMG_9090

Package and Manual

20170304-IMG_9087The package this light (and the SD26 for that matter) ship in is a very “finished” product.  The package is just “regular” cardboard but it’s a nice slip-fit (too nice in fact, it takes a while to let the pieces slide apart!).  The back has what’s essentially a full user’s guide.  That’s nice, but it’s nice that the manual is included, too.  The light and goodies are held in place by some foam, which makes for a nice presentation.

20170304-IMG_908820170304-IMG_9089

There is a bit of paperwork too.  Manual, warranty card, and …. social media card?  Seems like it.  QR codes, for connecting with Lumintop on Twitter and Facebook, and one direct to their site.

20170304-IMG_909320170304-IMG_909420170304-IMG_909220170304-IMG_9091

Build Quality and Disassembly

I’m pleased by the quality of this light.  In fact, while I don’t always love the UI on Lumintops, I will say that they do a nice job with the hardware.  The threads are nice thick ACME threads, and lubed – but just.  They could use a touch more, but still function well as is.  Since this light has on board charging, and doesn’t require proprietary cells, the micro-USB port is on the head end of the light.  The head must be unscrewed (all the way) to reveal the port.  This also means that while the head and tail unscrew off the light, the tube isn’t “open.”  The micro-USB port is firmly seated, and well centered, and worked well in my tests.

Both the head and tailcap have two-hole retaining rings.  The bezel is also screwed on, but I wasn’t able to loosen it.  I do expect it could be done!  And fortunately even though this light has charging, one wouldn’t have to dodge the charging port when inside the head, only the side switch.  The head and tail are different inner diameters, so the light may not physically be built in the wrong way.

A note about the knurling.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen any knurling like this before.  You’ve heard of those light-absorbing black out materials?  The knurling on this light looks that way.  It absorbs light at some angles,  in a way I just can’t remember having seen before.  It’s very cool.  I don’t mean in some tactical way…. I just mean in a “neat look at this” way.  And the knurling is very nice, to boot.  (Diamond, mostly flat but with some grip.)  And it seems to just be by the light of a computer screen, too….

Size

The EDC25 is a bit large, in all honesty.  Much of that size is likely due to the charging port.  The reflector is also quite deep, so that’s another length-add.  Too big for it’s namesake, EDC?  Probably not – definitely not too big in diameter, but the length may give some users pause.20170304-IMG_910720170304-IMG_9108

Retention

Three options.  The pocket clip is installed on arrival.  The pouch is a nice stiff pouch.  The lanyard is the best lanyard I’ve ever seen:  It’s orange.  I absolutely love this, and it’s just one more thing that Lumintop has “gotten right” about these new lights lately (the SD26 also has an orange lanyard!)

The clip isn’t really a deep carry clip, and isn’t anything fancy, but it does get the job done.

20170304-IMG_9095

Power

The EDC25 is powered by a single 18650 cell.  Any variety cell will not only produce light with the EDC25, but also may be charged in the EDC25.  Shout out to the manufacturers who do this – they sacrifice a bit in length, but it’s a huge bonus to actual light users.  And I’ll take a bit of a longer light, if I get to use and charge any cell I want.

The charging on this light works just fine- as I said above, the port is secure and snug.  I found that the charging termination was a bit (or even “quite”) low – 4.13V.  I have no idea why Lumintop would terminate charging that low, but possibly in a “better safe than sorry” scenario?  I really can’t guess.  That’s with a 6.2mA trickle charge, too!  So the light is clearly choosing to stop the charge at 4.13V.

I can also say that while the Turbo mode doesn’t last too long (as is typical with Turbo quotes), the stepdown is to High, and it’s absolutely rock solid for just about the remainder of the runtime.

runtimeI chose to stop the runtime when the red indicator side switch was blinking red.  Voltage at that point was 2.91V, with an EVVA 3500mAh protected cell.  The light still was producing a light level equivalent to Low, which is still quite a lot of usable light.

The charging test began at 2.68V, right where the runtime test was stopped.  Charge finished at 4.13V.  The charge was not fast (well under 1A), and it also terminates at a very low voltage.  Even with the trickle charge for a while, the voltage never was raised higher. Here’s a graph of that charge cycle:

charging

The positive end of the cell tube (which has the brass button to make contact with the head), also has charging indicators.  Green means charged, and red means charging is incomplete.  This is not to be confused with the indicating side switch which will only let you know when charging needs to occur.

User Interface and Operation

There are two switches on this EDC25.  A mechanical forward clicky tail switch, and an electronic indicating side switch.  The mechanical switch must be in the “on” position to do anything with the light – that includes charging (a fact you can notice I forgot if you study the charging graph).

The light is turned on with the tail switch.  It’ll come on in the last mode.  At that point the side switch is used to change modes.  If the light is off, modes may not be changed.  Modes cycle Low to High (and there are 5 modes).

The above is a description of the UI that the light ships with.  That’s the “Outdoor” UI.  There’s a second complete group for the UI, which is the “Tactical” option.

To enter the Tactical UI, first turn the light on, then hold the side switch.  As far as switching UI’s go, that’s pretty easy…. (compared to the Klarus XT1c for example, which was some finger gymnastics to achieve).

The Tactical UI has fewer modes, but they’re cycled differently.  In Tactical UI, the side switch no longer does anything (except switching back to Outdoor UI).  To change modes in Tactical, the light must be turned off with the tail switch – it will then come on in the next mode.  The order is: Turbo > Strobe > Low.

When the cell is low, the side switch will blink red.  As that blinking speeds up, the cell is more desperately in need of charge.  Once the cell is “low”, the light will switch to low output.

LED and Beam

The emitter is a single Cree XP-L V5.

20170304-IMG_9097

It’s a fine emitter, and probably “typical” for this type light.  Nothing groundbreaking, but a nice workhorse.

That last shot is compared to the BLF-348, which I was recently told was unfair – the 348 will make anything look cool.  It’s very rosy.  I’ll tell why I always use that light though – I find the tint to be excellent, and the price to be even better.  It’s one of the (if not THE) cheapest way to get a fantastic tint light, and I think everyone here should have one.  Essentially the cheapest reference point.  In any event, the EDC25 might not compare all that well to it, that’s fair.

The beam has a very defined hot spot.  There’s a fair bit of spill, but – I’m quite surprised by how specific the hotspot is. Brought to you by a nice deep smooth reflector.

It’s really a great beam, if cool.

Beamshots, Runtime, and Lux Measurements

Brand Lumintop
Model EDC25
Emitter Cree XP-L
Emitter Notes V5
Runtime 18650
Beamshots [0.3″, f/8, ISO 100, 5000k] 18650
Claimed Lumens (lm) 1000
Lux (Measured) 888
At (m) 3.775
Candela (Calculated) in cd 12654.56
Throw (Calculated) (m) 224.98
Throw (Claimed) (m) 205

Random Comparisons and Competitive Options….

There are a bunch of lights in this category, made narrower by the inclusion of on-board charging.  The Thrunite TC12-V2 for example, and the Zanflare F1….  Both “tactical” but with onboard charging.  Price will likely differentiate between those categories for you (at least for this light at the coupon price).  Either this or the Thrunite will be slimmer than the Zanflare, and between the Thrunite and the Lumintop, the build quality is probably a wash.  Noteworthy however is that the Thrunite TC12 V2 doesn’t have to be unscrewed to be charged (it has a boot over the micro-USB).

Conclusion

What I like

  • Orange Lanyard
  • On-board charging
  • Build quality is excellent

What I don’t like

  • Unscrew head completely to use the charge port

Coupon

Edit: Here’s the coupon! Here’s a link to the EDC25, and the coupon code is 3RDGB25. (Good til 3/31 or 150 units).

Up Next

Next I’ll be reviewing the Lumintop SD26, and then most likely the Oveready Boss.

Notes

This light was provided by Gearbest at no cost to me.  I was not paid to write this review.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a website or blog at WordPress.com

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: