Thursday, December 12, 2013

ThruNite Lynx,1x18650,XM-L2 U2, 3 User Define Modes-REVIEW


ThruNite Lynx is one of the brightest flashlights in single 18650 battery form.
It is an upgraded/improved version of ThruNite's earlier model,Scorpion.
The flashlight features latest Cree XM-L2 U2 LED,smooth reflector,boost-buck driver,unique possibility of 3 user defined brightness levels or strobe frequency.

High quality Type III hard anodizing. Black finish. Excellent anodizing everywhere on the body.There's no even a single scratch or spot.
Machining is excellent.Most of the edges are well rounded,especially the cooling fins are very well made.
Good job

Stainless steel bezel,deep smooth aluminum reflector.
One of the downsides in this flashlight.The stainless steel bezel has somehow wrong shape that gives bad circular reflection in the outer zone of the spill.
The bezel itself has very slight texture that reflects any light and gives rainbow colored reflection.I think this could be fixed by grinding the bezel with sandpaper to make it matte.
The bezel is removable and color filter or diffuser can be attached on its place.

Highly efficient Cree XM-L2 U2 LED.

Lynx has unique aggressive looking design-deep cooling fins,deep knurling,thick grip ring,bigger than usual tailcap,thick stainless steel bezel.

Unique for ThuNite flashlights big momentary push button and rotary mode switching cap around it.
The grip ring gives stable anti-roll feature.

Very nice sturdy pocket clip,locked by threaded peg ring,but it is much tighter than needed and is pressed on the aggressive knurling.

Aluminum switch cap with large diameter.Easy access,easy to use.It will withstand any test in time.
The switch is just a push button switch without self locking.This is very reliable way of activating/deactivating the light.
Can be pressed absolutely quietly.
I like that the switch is light to press and easy to use,but in many cases this could cause accidental activation.
So it would be a little stiffer to meet requirements on more users.It's good that the switch can't be pressed by weight of the flshlight.
The grip ring is more aggressive than I would like,but most important is that it provides excellent,stable grip and actually don't hurt my hand.
The grip ring is not removable.Would be good if we have a choice to use it or not.

Technical specification

1. The first light basing on Buck-Boost circuit which can provided constant brightness output regardless battery types, LED modes, temperature and voltage change.
2. Utilizing the newest Cree XM-L2 LED supporting the high lumen output.

3. High efficiency driver circuit provides maximum 1000lm output & 310 meters beam.
. Three self-define infinite modes and a tactical momentary on mode almost meet all the needs.
5. Aircraft-grade aluminum body and stainless steel bezel.
6. Anti-scratch type III hard anodizing aluminum body.
7. Large surface of heat sink on its head, allowing for efficient heat dissipation.

8. High efficiency smooth reflector
. Ultra-clear lens with anti-reflective coating.
. Three self-define infinite mode can be set from Firefly(0.04lm) to High(1000lm), Slow Strobe and Quickly Strobe.
11. Optional filters: Red, Green, Blue, Yellow.

Description(from Thrunite's website)
ThruNite Lynx,up to 1000 lumens, is a high-end intelligent tactical flashlight.Lynx is the first LED flashlight basing on Buck-Boost design that results in constant brightness output regardless of battery type, LED model, temperature and voltage change. 25.4mm body and reliable tail-switch design can easily meet the use of law enforcement, search & rescue, hunt and tactical.

Due to the massive tailcap,Thrunite Lynx is longer and heavier than most 1x18650 flashlights.
210gr without battery,~260gr with 18650 battery.

Thrunite Lynx comes in very nice plastic case.You can transport the flashlight well protected and there is place for many accessories in it.
Standard in the set-Holster,ThruNite 18650 2600mAh battery,CR123A battery carrier,Long lanyard,3 spare O-rings,User manual,Warranty card and very nice compact size white diffuser lens.
As an option you can add to the set optional color filters-Red,Green,Blue,Yellow.
There is cut place for each of them(I didn't removed the cut foam parts on this picture).

Nice holster,well made,but as most holsters that come with the recent flashlights from all brands it is somehow thin and
putting the flashlight in it,is not easy and quick as it should be.

The holster fits well if the flashlight is bezel up inserted.

Good option for attaching.

Good size for stable grip and easy operating.
Check out the video below in the review to see how can be used(activating and selecting mode) with one hand.

Smaller reflector than its competitors,but gives better beam intensity.

Gold plated spring with soldered metal plate to it for better contact with the battery and more stability inside the battery tube.
ThruNite Lynx comes with ThruNite 2600mAh, 18650 Li-Ion battery.All batteries that I have(only protected-2600,3100,3400mAh)fit without any problem.

The water-sealing O-ring is inside the battery tube.There's no O-ring outside where are the threads.
The tailcap switching mechanism is made of thick,heavy steel.It gives big part of the weight of Lynx.

There's no spring at the head.It is not so needed in my opinion and gives some more space for bigger protected batteries.
Square-cut,firmly anodized threads.Their quantity is more than usual.

Unlike the other flashlights,here the head could be removed without difficulties.It is not glued and can be unscrewed anytime.
This gives possibilities foe easy modding-swapping the LED to other bin or de-domed for higher beam intensity.
Without head the flashlight can be used even for pretty nice fully flood light.

Optional larger diameter "Turbo head" can be screwed here.It will give more beam intensity to Lynx and will make it better thrower.

Cree XM-L2 U2 LED- Highest brightness,highest efficiency.

Thoughened ultra clear glass lens with quality anti-reflective coating.

The LED is perfectly centered.
(the picture is through the glass)

However,the most important thing in a flashlight is its ability to illuminate.
In the ThruNite Lynx this ability is on highest level.
1000 Lumens brightness,well focused beam with good spill.Clean cool white beam.No greenish or bluish tint.The brighter,center spot has good,round shape.
24000cd beam intensity. Great throw for this size reflector.

Here is the Lynx without the stainless steel bezel.No "parasite" color reflection.

The light with diffuser gives beautiful wide angle flood beam.Very useful.

User Interface

ThruNite Lynx has specific inteligent mode control.
It is one of a few flashlights that gives you possibility to define your own brightness levels and not only on one position,but 3.
To turn the flashlight On,just press the switch until the light starts.
To select mode rotate the mode ring(cap) clockwise or counterclockwise.There are dents for each of the modes.
There are total of 4 brightness modes. First far left(counterclockwise) mode is reserved for momentary highest brightness.It could be used only momentary and here can't be defined brightness level. This is made if you want to use the light momentary,for signaling,etc. There's no momentary option on the other modes.
The other 3 modes can be defined by the user precisely and used by twisting the mode ring to their dent.
To activate one of these modes just press the switch and it will lock the light to this level.Press again to deactivate the light.Quite easy to use.
It could take you some time to get used to this switch because it has long stroke,but doesn't requre to lock it with clicky sound.

The biggest advantage is that we can choose the brightness level on 3 positions,very easily and quickly.
To do it just press and hold the switch when the light is OFF. It will ramp through its output levels(brightness and strobe frequency)until you release the tail switch.You can choose from 0,04Lumens to 1000Lumens and Slow to Quick strobe for each of the 3 self-define modes.
Changing the mode is possible when then light is ON or Off. When the light is On just twist the mode ring to other mode and press again the tail switch.

The tail switch acts as a electronic switch(momentary push button).It is not a regular clicky and has no locked position.
Pressing it is easy and convenient.The switch is a little bit too light to press and can be pressed almost easy accidentaly.
Here comes the locking feature.
In all modes,triple quick press when the light is On, lockes the button and protects the light from accidently activation.
Triple pressing again unlocks the light and it is again ready to use.

ThruNite Lynx uses boost-buck driver to regulate the current to the LED.
The lumen output should be constant and regardless the battery voltage.

This is a runtime test for 120 minutes.
Brightness level set to highest.
The flashlight has 3 step-down.
First comes after 4,5 minutes and has to protect the flashlight from overheating.
After the first step-down the brightness is absolutely constant at level of ~68% of the initial output for 75 minutes(1h 15min).
Then when the battery voltage is too low comes second step-down.
It drops the brightness to 40% of the initial output.Second step-down lasts just 5 minutes. This step down tells you that the battery power is depleted and soon will have to change it.
Third step-down is just to give you some more light without stopping suddenly and leave you in the dark as many other flashlights do.
I really like and appreciate this option.It could be really important to have this light when needed.
This level is about 0,3% of the initial output.This is ~3 lumens.Still great output in emergency situation.
I had no possibility to test it how long will last at this level. I left it on this level for just 30 minutes.
I used Keeppower 3400mAh for measurements.
A cooling fan was used in all tests to keep the temperature in optimal range.

To see is the step down always at the same time I did a second test with brightness level set to ~90%.
The step-down came again after 4,5 minutes.
To see at what brightness will start the flashlight when it is used for some time,I restarted the flashlight ~15 minutes after the first step-down.
It started at nearly the same brightness.
First 20 minutes-Blue color.
After restart-Red color.

Here are both curves overlaid.
A few percent difference in the initial output.It could be caused by the LED temperature.

1 meter,white wall,1/20sec,WB Cloudy
All flashlights on their maximum level.

1 meter,white wall,1/250sec,WB cloudy

5 meters,wallpaper,1/6sec,WB cloudy

5 meters,1/50sec

Well concentrated spot with a lot of useful spill.

My impression of ThuNite Lynx is quite good.
The flashlight has some disadvantages that should be improved,all of them on the body construncion,but as a lighting tool it does the job great.
I really enjoyed testing/reviewing Lynx.It is very bright and I found it very handy,even its higher weight.
The switch is different type from the other and gives many advantages,like using the light(turn ON/OFF and mode selecting) with one hand.
It's always great to try something new with wide possibility of control over it.Choosing own brightness presets will meet all user requirements.

Thanks for reading!

Lynx was provided by ThruNite for test and review.