Greetings to all who looked at the light. The review will focus, as you probably already guessed, on a compact flashlight Zebralight SC600w Mark IV Plus with a neutral shade of light. Of the interesting features of the novelty, one can note the neutral LED Cree XHP50.2 (4500K), which produces a luminous flux of 2300lm, a one-button customizable interface, a proprietary driver with brightness stabilization in each mode, and the presence of a customizable thermal control to protect against overheating. Anyone interested, please…
General view of the lantern:
This model and others can be purchased at the NKON.NL store. With coupon «SC600w_5_euro_off» for €5 and shipping €3.34 the cost of the lantern is €77.24 (about 5500r):
I dare to remind you that in Russian stores the prices for this model are about 7000 rubles, in our region it is generally 7600 rubles. Well, taking this opportunity, I would like to add that this is one of those online stores that holds on to its reputation and does not sell various fakes, so at the same time you can buy original batteries, ranging from NiMH (Eneloop, Maha, Fujitsu, GP) and ending with Li-Ion batteries of various formats (Sony, LG, Samsung, Sanyo/Panasonic). Ask any experienced flashlighter/vaper where consistently fresh and original batteries are, and he will answer you that Nkon. The only caveat is paid delivery, so it makes sense to finish the basket up to 2kg for maximum savings (delivery costs €9.9). For residents of Russia, orders must be placed in your version of the site — en.nkon.nl.
Otherwise, everything is quite simple: they threw in the right one, ticked the box for lithium delivery, updated it. Usually when buying more than 8-10 pieces, the price tag is pleasantly reduced.
To avoid misunderstanding, I will give a decoding of some «lantern» terms that will be found in the article (thanks to comrade ceramic for some clarifications):
Click to expand
- — Lantern head — the front part of the lantern, responsible for the distribution of light. Often there is a control electronics (driver), emitter (LED), reflector and protective glasses;
- — Lantern body/tube — serves to connect all parts of the lantern into a single whole, as well as to accommodate power supplies;
- — Tail/Ass (Tailcap) — serves as a kind of «cover» of the lantern. By unscrewing it, you can remove the batteries for replacement / charging;
- — LED/emitter/diode — LED (light emitting diode), the main element of any lamp that emits light. In most cases, Cree LED is the undisputed market leader. It is followed by three less common firms: Nichia Chemical (Japan), OSRAM Licht AG (Germany) and Philips Lumileds (USA). Well, there is a whole army of completely «green» and not very companies, even several Russian companies. Xenon lamps can also be used as an emitter, but this is a completely different topic;
- — Hops/second hop – refers to Cree LEDs, in particular Cree XM-L (hop) and Cree XM-L2 (second hop);
- — Pill — head element that receives heat from the LED and removes it to the body. It is usually screwed into the head of the lantern (“folk” Convoy of old versions or some branded lanterns) or simply pressed / inserted and pressed with a retaining ring, as in cheap “shitfires”. Recently, more and more often there is a pillless version, where the star lies on the body element (partition), as, for example, in the new Convoy and most branded flashlights. In the people, this design option is sometimes called — «solid head». The pill is made either from a copper alloy (bronze/brass) or from aluminum alloys. Pure copper is used / machined only by «lamplighters»;
- — Driver (current limiter) — used to power the LED with a fixed (limited) current. There are pulsed and linear ones, the latter often have low efficiency (with a high battery level), but are many times cheaper than pulsed ones. There are also 3 types: step-down, step-up and step-up (only in branded flashlights);
- — Carcass (Host) — in the usual sense, the head, body and tail are assembled, without electronics and LEDs. Designed mainly for self-assembly of a lantern with individual elements. In relation to finished lanterns, the term «carcass» means only the body, i.e. removal of old elements, usually drivers, LEDs, buttons and optics, and installation of new ones;
- — clip — serves to hold the flashlight on a belt or pocket, less often on the visor of a baseball cap / hat, if the flashlight is small in size;
- — Button seal — serves for moisture protection, usually made of silicone or soft rubber. It can be luminous (glows in the dark);
- — O-ring/gasket (O-ring) — also designed for moisture protection, usually installed in front of glass, or in places of threaded connections. It also happens to be luminous;
- — knurling – designed to create a more aesthetic appearance of the flashlight, as well as to hold it more securely in your hand;
- — Thread — designed to connect the parts of the lantern. With o-rings, a very strong hermetic connection is obtained;
- — Anodizing — creation of an oxide film on the surface of the material by electric method — designed to protect against external influences, increase the strength of the coating, as well as to protect against traces of luminum (aluminum tends to get dirty);
- — Switch/Button — to control the flashlight modes, there is a power button (designed for switching high currents) and a clock button (for switching low currents). There are forward and backward clicks, i.e. inclusion before and after fixation. Some with a latch, some without a latch. Tact buttons are often used in flashlights with impulse drivers, power buttons with linear ones;
- — Bezel/crown – designed to protect the edge of the head (shape) from impacts, as well as for more convenient maintenance without disassembling the entire lamp (in Convoy S2/S2+/S5/S6/S8, to access the LED or optics, you need to disassemble the entire head). Well, for aesthetic reasons, because. someone likes carcasses with a shiny edging more;
- — glass/lens – to protect the interior of the flashlight from dust/dirt/water. There are glass and plastic (PMMA, polycarbonate). The latter are very fragile, easily scratched and have a transmittance of about 90-93%. Ordinary glass ones let in 99% of the light, do not scratch, and can also have an anti-reflective coating (in branded flashlights);
- — Reflector/reflector — responsible for the distribution of light. There are short-range, medium-range and long-range. The deeper the reflector, the more long-range it is (shines far). On the reflective surface, there are both smooth coated (SMO) and textured (OP). The latter have a not so pronounced border of the hotspot transition to side illumination, as well as a slightly wider central spot, well, there are no artifacts. Smooth reflectors usually have peculiar rings along the side illumination;
- — TIR lens/optics — used to form a beam of light. There are also both long-range and melee. With the same dimensions, the angle may be different. The most common are from 15 to 120 degrees (the most popular TIR is 60 degrees). The latter, in turn, have a wide uniform illumination, which is simply necessary in headlamps;
- — Central spot / hotspot — a spot of light that has an increased brightness compared to side illumination. Usually, the hotspot is pronounced for long-range flashlights and looks like a central bright spot in the center, and on the sides there is a barely visible side light with artifacts. Completely devoid of hotspot TIR lenses 45-120 degrees;
- — EDC flashlight (Everyday carry — wear every day, translated from English) — compact flashlights, in the Convoy line this is the S series;
- — Runtime — lamp glow time
- — Stock/stock version – version supplied by the manufacturer.
- — Brightness stabilization – maintenance of the specified brightness level by the flashlight electronics. There is full and partial stabilization. Full stabilization involves maintaining a given output power regardless of the battery charge level — the output is always, say, 450lm. In this case, as a rule, the driver is a down-up-up, i.e. while the battery is fresh — the driver works as a step-down. As soon as the battery is dead, the driver starts to work as a step-up. Flashlights on such drivers are quite expensive. Partial stabilization involves maintaining a given output power up to a certain point, usually up to some battery discharge limit. Often these are switching/linear buck drivers;
- — Stepdown — a sharp or smooth decrease in the output power of the LED according to a certain algorithm, i.e. in simple terms, reducing the output current per diode. There is a temporary stepdown (a decrease in current after 3-5 minutes), a multistepdown (a decrease in output power, say, after 5 minutes from 950lm to 600lm, and after a couple of minutes, and even, for example, up to 450lm), thermal stepdown (a decrease in current depending on lamp heating).
I think these terms will suffice.
- — Manufacturer — Zebralight
- — Model name — SC600w Mk IV Plus
- — Lantern color — gray
- – Material – aviation aluminum with HA-III coating (for military equipment)
- — Light source — LED Cree XHP50.2 4500K (neutral shade)
- – Maximum luminous flux – 2300 lumens
- — Driver — pulsed with digital brightness stabilization
- — Power — 1×18650, 2xCR123A
- — Operating voltage — 2.7V-6V
- — Waterproof — yes (IPx8 standard)
- — Operating modes — 3 brightness levels + two / three sub-modes to choose from
- — Mode memory — yes
- – Dimensions – 96mm*30mm
- – Weight – 64g
- — Super bright LED Cree XHP50.2 (luminous flux 2300 lumens)
- — Eye-pleasing neutral shade of light (4500K)
- — All-metal body with HA-III coating (for military equipment)
- — Recessed button to prevent accidental pressing
- — Hardened impact resistant lens
- — Convenient one-button control, quick access to all main brightness levels
- — 3 brightness levels + strobe with different flicker intensity
- — Two or three additional programmable sub-modes to choose from
- — Brightness stabilization in each mode
- — Automatic transition to a lower mode when the charge level is insufficient
- — Built-in battery level indicator
- — Built-in protection against battery overdischarge at the level of 2.7V
- — The presence of adjustable protection against overheating (thermal control)
- — Protection against incorrect installation (polarity reversal) of the battery
- — Waterproof according to IPx8 standard
- — Zebralight SC600w Mk IV Plus flashlight
- — 2 spare O-rings
- — clip
- — instruction in English
The Zebralight SC600w Mk IV Plus flashlight comes in a nondescript cardboard box with one single sticker with the name of the flashlight model:
Despite the fact that the flashlight is designed for the top segment of the market, the manufacturer traditionally decided not to indulge a potential buyer with colorful packaging, minimizing the final cost. As for me, it looks like saving «on matches», because as a gift this option will fit with great interference. And given the fact that they are greeted by clothes, the first impression can be spoiled. But the lights of this company have always been of good quality and cost a lot. Be that as it may, we leave it on the conscience of the manufacturer.
The box itself is strong enough, and inside there is a special compartment for a flashlight and a lining made of foamed polyethylene:
The operating instructions are quite short and only in English. The main characteristics, again, are missing and you can see them only on the Internet. This is exactly the case when the manufacturer does not pursue marketing figures, but simply offers a well-thought-out quality product at the best price.
The Zebralight SC600w Mk IV Plus flashlight looks quite nice and immediately gives the impression that we are facing a rather expensive product:
The designers did not change the usual design of the case and brought the model to life with all the «traditional» attributes, namely with rounded edges of the case, in a pleasant gray color, with a chrome bezel and a small recessed button. Those. the design of the lantern largely copies previous models. A more detailed view of the lantern from all sides:
This model has pronounced shallow cooling fins that allow you to effectively remove heat with passive cooling (without forced airflow):
In the center of the head part there is a single control button. It is recessed to prevent accidental pressing, for example, in a pocket or backpack:
Compared to some other flashlights, a very simple and effective tool. Here we can also note the presence of tempered impact-resistant glass with a chrome-plated bezel, which protects the front end of the flashlight and gives some solidity.
As a light-emitting element, a new modification of the Cree LED is installed, namely XHP50.2 with a neutral hue (4500K), manufactured using SC5 Technology technology (maximum luminous flux is not more than 2654 lm):
Due to a single layer of phosphor on the radiating surface, the uniformity of radiation and light spot is significantly improved, which is especially noticeable when working with smooth mirror reflectors. By the way, the so-called “crumpled” reflector is installed here, which smooths out the hotspot transitions to side illumination, has a wider central spot, and also boasts the absence of light artifacts. The LED is centered well, no prints under the glass and other flaws were found:
Unfortunately, it is not possible to disassemble this model, however, like the entire Zebralight lineup, without losing its appearance. All threads during assembly are lubricated with a special compound, which has a positive effect on water protection and overall reliability. This is by no means a minus, since the lights are almost perfectly designed and do not require any modifications, unlike budget models. Zebralight offers a wide range of different models with different types of light emitting diodes and different shades of light, and the driver is easy to operate and has high efficiency, so there is nothing to change or modify. In this regard, you can only unscrew the tail to install or replace the battery, which has undergone some changes in this series. The manufacturer abandoned spring current collectors and installed pin ones, which have much greater efficiency and lower losses at high currents:
There are no complaints about the quality of the case: the anodization is strong, there are sealing rings in the places of threaded connections, the threads are richly lubricated with grease. The threads are also anodized, which allows you to protect the flashlight from accidental pressing during transportation by slightly unscrewing the tail:
The flashlight tube has a characteristic knurling, thanks to which the flashlight lies more confidently even in wet hands. There are two special grooves on the case designed to install the clip in any position and an eyelet for a lanyard (not included in the kit):
Inside the tube, only pin current collectors and the reverse side of the driver board are visible:
IPx8 moisture protection is declared, which means that the flashlight can be easily immersed in water to a depth of more than a meter for a long time.
The dimensions of the Zebralight SC600w Mk IV Plus flashlight are only 96mm*30mm*25mm, so it can rightfully be considered a compact EDC flashlight that you can always carry with you in your pants pocket or purse. Flashlight in comparison with different batteries (Li-Ion 18650, NiMH AA and AAA format):
The weight of the flashlight without battery is only 64g:
Pretty compact and light «baby», isn’t it?
Control and operating modes:
The controls in the Zebralight SC600w Mk IV Plus are quite simple and repeat the principles used previously that could be found in previous series. Roughly speaking, a short click turns the flashlight on and off, a long press switches modes. The user has 3 modes: high (High), medium (Mid) and low (Low). In addition to the main mode (H1/M1/L1), at each brightness level there is an additional mode (H2/M2/L2), which is activated by a quick double press, and can be adjusted individually. So, for example, for the H2 mode, you can choose three different glow modes: 1311 lm, 705 lm or 358 lm. For modes M2 and L2 the same. The modes are chosen quite competently, but personally I don’t really like a lot of minimal modes, especially in a hand lamp. I would prefer to see in the middle mode in the region of 300 — 500 lumens, because they are sometimes in demand, but if you “drive” one of them into place H2, then the no less current mode of 1311 lm disappears from quick access, a kind of “turbo for rooms” . Those. for me, ideally, the following set in “quick” access would be preferable: H (2300lm / 1311lm), M (~ 500lm / 171lm), L (33lm / 5lm). But again, this is for me personally, and as practice shows, it is the factory modes that are of interest to many, so the manufacturer took into account the wishes and left them. The mode memory is non-volatile and does not reset after battery replacement.
Operating modes (mode->brightness->glow time):
The main group of modes — 3 main modes with two / three additional glow modes to choose from:
- — maximum H (2300 lm) — 1.8 h or 1311 lm (2 h) / 705 lm (2.5 h) / 358 lm (5.1 h)
- — medium M (171 lm) — 12.1 h or 77 lm (26 h) / 33 lm (2.6 days) / 13 lm (6 days)
- — low L (5 lm) — 13.5 days or 1.8 lm (1 month) / 0.6 lm (2 months) / 0.2 lm (3.5 months)
Additional (hidden) group of modes — 4 special signals:
- — «strobe», i.e. flashes in H1 mode with a frequency of 4Hz
- — «fast strobe», the flash frequency is already 19Hz in H1 mode (really disturbs vision)
- — beacon — flashes in the minimum mode with a frequency of 0.2 Hz (to determine the location of the flashlight)
- — beacon — flashes in H1 mode with a frequency of 0.2Hz (for determining the location on the ground)
Briefly about management:
- — short press on the button — turn on the flashlight in the maximum mode, which worked before turning off (H1 or H2)
- — quick double-click on the button — turn on the flashlight in the middle mode, which worked before turning off (M1 or M2)
- — quick triple pressing of the button — turning on the flashlight in the special signal mode (strobes or beacons), which worked before turning off
- — long press the button (more than 0.6 sec) — turn on the flashlight in the minimum, medium or high mode (switching from bottom to top)
- — short press on the button — turn off the flashlight (switch to standby mode)
- — quick double-click on the button — select the brightness mode (1 or 2) for the current level (L / M / H)
- — long press on the side clock button (more than 0.6 sec) — switching modes from weak to strong (L -> M -> H)
- — quick quarter press on the button (4 quick presses) — checking the degree of battery charge (the flashlight flashes one, two, three or four times, depending on the degree of charge)
- — six quick double clicks from the main mode (H1/M1/L1) — the flashlight switches to the power selection mode of the L2/M2/H2 submode), the choice is also made by double clicking
As a result, the control in principle is simple and understandable. There is a full-fledged memory of modes, which is not reset after replacing the battery (non-volatile memory).
Power supply and input current measurements:
The Zebralight SC600w Mk IV Plus flashlight is powered by one 18650 (3.7V) lithium battery, although it can be powered by CR123A (3V) lithium batteries. The operating voltage range is from 2.7V to 6V. As for me, the most preferred power source is a Li-Ion battery f / f 18650, because in the highest operating mode the consumption is about 4A and not all lithium batteries can provide it. In this regard, I recommend taking a closer look at the current models of medium or high-current batteries for 3000 — 3500mah. I would like to see power from the f/f 21700 elements that are gaining popularity, but alas. I hope such variations will appear in the fifth series of flashlights.
Traditionally for Zebralight flashlights, the driver used has the function of stabilizing the brightness in each mode, determining the battery charge level, thermal control and protection against battery reversal. The first one provides a stabilized brightness regardless of the battery charge level (voltage) and, if conditions permit (the remaining energy of the lamp, the temperature of the substrate), it produces the declared luminous flux. Few flashlights can boast of having such a function, so we can safely say that the flashlight clearly corresponds to its cost and fully fulfills it. The function of determining the level of charge of the battery allows you to roughly estimate the degree of charge. To do this, with the flashlight on, you need to quickly press the button four times. After that, the flashlight will blink once (less than 25% charged), twice (from 25 to 50% charged), three (50 to 75% charged), or four times (more than 75% charged), depending on the state of charge. The thermal control function (thermostepdown) allows you to protect the LED from overheating and degradation by smoothly reducing the output current. The advantages here are simply obvious and, unlike cheaper flashlight models, there is no temporary stepdown and the light output is not abruptly reset. In addition, the thermostepdown can also be adjusted. With protection against battery reversal, I think everything is clear. Considering how many people, especially those unfamiliar with Li-Ion batteries f / f 18650, ask where the plus and minus are, it obviously will not be superfluous.
To measure the current consumption, a small stand was built from a high-quality holder (holder), a freshly charged high-current Sony VTC6 3000mah battery, a voltmeter and a multimeter in current measurement mode. A voltmeter was added for clarity, to assess the voltage drop. I will not give the whole «sheet» of measurements, but I will add only the key ones. So, in the maximum mode H1 (2300lm), the consumption from the battery was about 4A. In total, the driver consumes about 16W:
From the photo you can see that the voltage drop on the battery is small, because it is high-voltage with low internal resistance and can deliver up to 20A to the load without any problems. The situation with more common low-current (up to 5A) batteries is not so clear, so I recommend using medium and high-current banks.
In the H2 glow mode (1311lm), the consumption was about 2A:
In the average mode M1 (171lm), the consumption is small and is about 0.2A:
In low modes, consumption is generally miserable, although there is not much light:
For comparison, the measurement of consumption in the mode (H1 / M1) from the regulated PSU Gophert CPS-3010:
Overdischarge protection is implemented correctly and at around 2.55V the cutoff occurs instantly. To protect against overheating by means of the driver, a thermal stepdown is implemented, i.e. the driver resets the consumed (output) current depending on the heating of the substrate (by the thermal sensor). For example, when using a flashlight in an apartment in H1 mode, the flashlight body warms up quickly enough and after a while the driver smoothly reduces the current.
The lantern comes with thread sealing rings and a clip. The only thing missing is a lanyard on the hand, but in principle, you can buy it at any hunting store for 50 rubles or take it from any other lantern. The clip is elastic and will come in handy for those who plan to cling a flashlight to a trouser pocket or a baseball cap (aka “headband”):
As far as I remember, the Zebras never had covers in the kit, so I don’t consider it a minus.
My «artisanal» beamshots:
The Zebralight SC600w Mk IV Plus is versatile as it has a 14° main beam for some range and an 80º side beam for good visibility:
Since I don’t have a normal camera, I will shoot as usual — with a smartphone camera. Medium mode M1 (171lm):
High mode H2 (1311lm):
High mode H1 (2300lm):
Perfectly acts as a compact long-range (photos do not convey the whole picture):
Conclusion: I think that it is unnecessary to comment on anything here, because The lamp is excellent and fully justifies its price. This series has extended functionality and increased brightness, so it is perfect for people who lead an active lifestyle (tourists, climbers, speleologists, diggers), for professional use (police, security, etc.), for those who often use flashlights or just connoisseurs of quality products. For people who use flashlights a couple of times a month for several minutes, the functionality of this flashlight is rather redundant. I liked the flashlight and will use it along with Lumintop ODF30C on 26650 elements. I can safely recommend to buy.
This model and others can be purchased at the NKON.NL store. With coupon «SC600w_5_euro_off» for €5 and shipping €3.34 the cost of the lantern is €77.24 (about 5500r):
See also my other reviews:
Overview of the Be quiet! Straight Power 11 650W HERE
64GB Kingston Canvas Go Memory Card Review (U3/V30) HERE
Overview of the desktop dishwasher BBK 55-DW012D HERE
Review of a Miolla knife with a blade length of 10cm or how to buy profitable on Ozon HERE
An overview of the step-down (Buck) module RD DPS5020 with a power of 1000W HERE
Review of the quiet and efficient Be quiet! Dark Rock 4 with TDP 200W HERE
Overview of a reliable and very comfortable gaming chair ThunderX3 BC1 HERE
An overview of a quality PSU ThunderX3 Plexus 1000 a little over a kilowatt HERE
Hawkeye Firefly 8S 170° 4K Action Camera Review HERE
Overview of ultrasonic cleaner Kaisi K-105 HERE
Overview of HyperX Predator DDR4 RGB 2933MHz Speed Memory Kit HERE