Beamtech BT-950L (2012-06-08)

Beamtech BT-950L

Purchased from Tmart

Battery: 1 x 18650
Switch: Tail – reverse clicky
Driver: East-092B  (3.26A at the tail on High)
Modes: 5 – H>M>L>Strobe>OSO
LED Type: Cree XM-L T6 1C (judging from tint compared to other lights)
Lens: Glass
Tailstands: Yes
From: Tmart
Date Ordered: May 21, 2012
Date Received: May 24, 2012
Purchase link:   http://www.tmart.com/BeamTech-BT950L-CREE-SMLT6-1000LM-5-Modes-LED-Flashlight-Electric-Torch_p129243.html

Specifications (from site):

  • Key Features LED flashlight, Flashlight torch
  • Light Color White
  • LED quantity 1pcs
  • LED bulb lifespan 100000 hours
  • Luminous flux 1000LM
  • Power by 1 x 18650 3.7V battery (not included)
  • 5 Modes High-Mid-Low-Strobe-SOS
  • Maximum range 300 m
  • Material Aluminum alloy(Body), Lens(Glass)
  • Dimensions 5.98″ x 1.77″ x 1.18″ (L x Head.Dia x Body.Dia)
  • Body color Black
  • Package Includes 1 x BeamTech BT-950L CREE XML-T6 1000LM 5 Modes LED Flashlight Electric Torch

Pros:

  • Arrived from Tmart in just 4 days from ordering.
  • Excellent finish without any blemishes, scratches, chips or dings.
  • Packaging arrived in great shape.
  • Stainless-steel crenelated bezel
  • Glass lens
  • Great throw
  • Very bright
  • Great tint. No green or pink tinge to it. Just white.
  • Perfectly centered emitter.
  • Thermal paste under star.
  • Anodized threads on head and pill.
  • Clean and ample threading.
  • Nice switch feel.
  • Crenelated tail cap
  • Extremely stable tail standing.
  • Lanyard holes large enough to accommodate 550 Paracord.
  • Excellent heat transfer.
  • Bright as hell!!

Cons:

  • Has O-rings. Not a good one on the light. All too thin or too small or both.
  • Not enough mass to shed the heat from the LED on high. Gets really hot really quick! Switch only rated for  1.5A but so far no issues with it.
  • No spring on the driver. Bumps on the tail change modes easily.

My Measurements:

  • Length: 151.71mm
  • Head width & depth: 44.85mm x 44.76mm
  • Tail width: 26.93mm/28.93mm
  • Reflector (W x D): 39.93mm x 35.41mm
  • Lens (W x D): 41.88mm x 1.6mm
  • Driver: 17mm
  • Emitter: 16mm

Impressions:

I bought this light since it was a clone of the Keygos KE-5 and I wanted to see how the Beamtech performed compared to what I heard from the Keygos KE-5. The Keygos are known to have driver issues with some being well driven and many others poorly driven. It arrived in the usual bubble sleeve inside the usual white box. The box was in fantastic shape with no dents, creases or crushing. I can only credit this to Tmart, not Beamtech. Good on you, Tmart!

Upon removing the light from its packaging I found it to be free of any dings, scratches or ano blemishes. Threads were clean and ample but dry. Threads on the pill and the head are nicely cut and anodized. Glass lens was clear and appears to be uncoated. Reflector is clean and free of blemishes and the emitter was clean and perfectly centered.

Internally I was pleasantly surprised. The LED star (16mm) is mounted well with thermal epoxy and centered with the nicest centering ring I’ve seen on a light yet. Made of white nylon, the centering ring completely covers the PCB but has slots for the soldering to have room. It is thick enough to keep the reflector from shorting out the LED connections. The driver is unregulated and goes to direct drive on high with no visible PWM to me. Mind you I am not sensitive to PWM but while I am sure it’s there, it is reasonably high based on the fact that the driver is an East-092B and is the same driver used in my Ultrafire HD2010. The switch assembly is very solid with great feel and no sponginess. The spring is soldered onto the switch PCB and is secured by a threaded brass ring. The switch itself is only rated for 1.5A, and while one day it may fail, so far it has exhibited no issues. It is easily replaced, if need be, with any C8 switch.

The only flaws with the build quality were easy ones to fix. The O-rings were far too small and thin for the light body. I replaced these with 16mm GITD O-rings I already had. I replaced the O-ring between the pill and the head with a 20mm GITD I keep on hand. Also, I decided to place a second 20mm O-ring onto the pill to completely seal anay space between the pill finning and the head for positive water proofing. The thin bead of GITD that is visible also looks pretty good IMO. With these in place the connections are snug and should be very water tight. I removed the Stainless steel bezel to check the lens O-ring and could not see one. I popped out the reflector and found the O-ring was there but was so thin that it had squeezed past the reflector and was stuck in the head. Since the lens is roughly 42mm and the same size as that on a C8, I also had 42mm GITD O-rings I had on hand. After swapping the O-ring with the one I had on hand, everything fit together perfectly and I have no doubt that it is now water-tight.

The only remaining flaw (but not an uncommon one in many flashlights) is the lack of a spring on the driver for the battery positive. I found that light bumping of the tail will change modes easily. This may be exaggerated by my battery being a flat-topped Panasonic. Perhaps a cell with a “+” button will resist the mode changes better. I did not add a spring to the driver (yet) because I wanted to take my pics beforehand. I will probably add the driver spring tomorrow to make it perfectly rock-solid with flat-topped cells.

Performance:

Wow!! This baby is bright! It is direct driven and I tested around 3.26A at the tail.  Just like the HD2010, I was unable to measure any other mode but High with the tail cap off.

Along with the incredible amount of light, it also produces an incredible amount of heat. In defense of the light I will say that the entire light heats quickly and evenly which is testament that it wicks the heat from the LED and is doing its job well. That said, after tail standing for about 10 minutes it was so hot I was almost unable to pick it up to turn it off without going for a pair of gloves. With some breeze and/or hand-held blood cooling it shouldn’t be too much of a problem but still requires attention from the user. Definitely not a light for a noob or for lending out to a family member or neighbor.

The 5 modes all work well. High/medium/low are nicely spaced just as in the HD2010. Strobe is fast and brutal. “SOS” is actually OSO just like on the HD2010…useless!.

LED tint is a very nice white on mine with no green, purple or pink undertones to it.

The hot-spot is tight and well focused with very smooth, ringless spill in spite of the smooth reflector. It will easily out throw any C8 light while still providing ample spill for peripheral viewing. Being a clone of the infamous Ultrafire 980 it throws very well but not as well as the HD2010 obviously due to the reflector being smaller in diameter. I think this style of light is a perfect compromise between a dedicated thrower and a C8 style light. After having this I would easily choose it over C8 lights for all around usefulness.

Summary:

Aside from the O-ring issues I find this light to be pretty outstanding for a budget option! If you have a good variety of O-rings on hand for your other lights it’s really not much of an issue and I can recommend it for you. If you are just getting started and don’t have a bin of extra O-rings yet then you might want to reconsider the light if you plan on exposing it to anything more than a light rain.

Tmart provided fast shipping as usual and the light arrived with the box in good enough shape to be used in gift giving.

If you want a crazy bright hotrod of a light that throws well for its size and aren’t put off by a couple easily resolved issues then it’s hard to beat this. At $27 it is still a decent value, especially when compared to the Keygos KE-5 which, aside from the occasional deal sells between $25 and $28 elsewhere. Add in the driver lottery with the Keygos and I would choose this Beamtech over the Keygos without hesitation. If Tmart can offer the BT-950L at a better price I think it would sell very well. At $22-$25 it would be an outstanding value but at $27 it’s just a value.

In short this light, with very little additional work, has quickly jumped to the front row of my “go to” lights!!

Now for the pics!
All pics are sized smaller for quicker loading of the thread.  As usual, clicks on my pics open to a larger resolution window.

Package as it arrived.  Great shape!

That is dust on the crenelated edge of the tailcap.
I forgot to wipe down all the edges before taking the pics.

The knotless lanyard on the light was added by me when the light arrived.
I call it the “Mac-lanyard” (Foy has the “foyzel” so why not?) and it keeps
metal rings and lanyard clips from damaging the finish.

The PERFECTLY centered emitter

Very clean threads

East-092B driver.  Same as in the UF HD2010.

The pill and cooling fins are all one piece.
Very nice smooth threads on this part.  Grease makes them look rough.

Sturdy nylon centering/insulator ring

Rear view of reflector and head

Front of head with bezel removed

View of SS bezel threading

Head parts removed

Head inner view of outer shell

Threads where head joins the pill

Here you can see the original O-rings.  Both too small and one too thin.

Here you can see the original O-ring for the pill-to-head joint.
I replaced it with a 20mm GITD I had.  Added a second to
the base where the pill meets the head.

I replaced the original lens O-ring with a 42mm GITD.
All O-rings on the BT-950L are the same as on a C8.  Wink

Driver diameter

Tail cap without switch internals


Beamtech BT-950 on the left.  Keygos KE-5 on the right

Ultrafire HD2010 / Beamtech BT-950L / eBay Skyray A0 clone

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