DQG 26650 World Smallest Triple CREE XP-G2 R5 LED Flashlight
Web link: CNQualityGoods.com
My DQG Tiny 26650 arrived in the mail in a padded envelope and wrapped in bubble wrap. Unwrapping revealed a nice little tin that at first glance didn’t seem possible to have a 26650 cell flashlight inside. It looked more like a AA or 16340 light box. The clear plastic window is covered with a large black sticker, hiding and teasing about what is inside.
Pull off the lid and inside is the gray hard anodised Tiny 26650 and it’s stainless switch and bezel sitting in fitted foam. Next to it is an accessory bag with lanyard.
Here are the light and lanyard. The lanyard comes with a quick detach clip and lobster claw latch. One of the nice lanyards I’ve seen come with a light.
The hidden accessory that you don’t see until you open the Tiny 26650 is the 18650 adapter sleeve.
The included 18650 adapter sleeve is about the nicest I’ve seen yet. O-rings on each end eliminate all rattle that you would usually experience using an adapter sleeve. It’s a super nice touch that they created here. 😉
Breakdown and Closer Look:
The Tiny 26650 took any cells I put in it, from flat topped to button topped, and unprotected and protected. Seen below is a King Kong 4200mAh button top cell.
Might not look it but that big cell fits inside with no issues at all. Pretty impressive just how small this light is! 8^)
Looking head on at the DQG Tiny we see its second appealing factor, the triple XP-G2 NW emitters. The green cast that is visible oaround the outer edges of the lens comes from the GITD O-ring between the lens and head.
With the smooth stainless steel bezel it’s a damned good looking little light.
A band of nice knurling sits on the head just behind the bezel. The stainless steel switch sits between the knurling and the rear of the head. The switch itself has a GITD insert. It’s a nice thought but it doesn’t really do much in reality. It has to have been sitting directly under a light source to charge it’s glow and doesn’t hold it for long.
The battery tube and tail are all one piece with a nice wide band of good knurling and a notched band around the tail section that provides some anti-roll protection.
It just disappears in my hand.
A closer look at the switch and head.
The lanyard cutouts are wide and allow for 550 Paracord to be used in most any configuration you would want. If using a split ring, there is a center cutout to allow for tail standing with a lanyard attached.
The only identifying marking on the light (aside form the entire one of a kind look it has) is the brand and model etched onto the tail.
The stainless bezel unscrews revealing nicely cut threading in it along with anodized threads on the head of the light. The threading in the head for the bezel is only a few threads deep but it works just fine with no chance of skipping or stripping. The bezel and lens design makes for a completely waterproof lens assembly with the O-ring sitting between the lens and head.
With the lens and GITD O-ring removed you can see the Cree XP-G2 emitters mounted on a full copper MCPCB with direct thermal path. The MCPCB is painted black to remove any internal glare or reflections from interfering with the beam pattern.
A center screw secures the copper MCPCB to the face of the head. The entire head is an integrated pill.
In this pic below you can make out the copper exposed edges in the MCPCB. The MCPCB is also secured with a thermal epoxy, not thermal grease.
The TIR optics/lens is AR coated on both sides. Here we see the underside. The most visible thing is the extra width of the lens surface compared to the TIR optics in the center.
The matte finish surrounding the TIR optics is etched into the outer face and helps diffuse any internal reflections that might get past the black inner coating. You can easily see the AR coating on the inner and outer faces of the lens.
The backside of the head reveals the the anode spring and brass retaining ring with white nylon insulator. The threads here are nicely machined and fully anodised to allow for mechanical lockout.
The photo below and the one after that show the only flaws in the finish. There are small sections on the rear lip of the head where there isn’t much anodizing. It’s as if the head was sitting on a support during the dying process and the anodizing isn’t colored in those spots. It’s something that is really hard to see once the light is assembled but if the light reflects just right you can make it out but you have to be looking for it.
The driver itself is a boost driver in order to drive the triple XP-G2 emitters which are wired in series instead of parallel. This boost circuit allows the emitters to run regulated longer using the single 4.2v cell.
A closer look at the retaining ring and insulator disk.
Cleanly cut square threading secures the head and body of the Tiny together. Threads were prelubed and the O-ring seals well.
A look inside the body/battery tube shows the cathode spring all the w2ay at the rear of the light. There is enough travel that all cells I have fit in the Tiny. The spring locks into a groove cut into the bottom of the battery well and this keeps the spring from falling out or rattling.
The UI on the Tiny 26650 is really simple and fairly intuitive aside from the 1 second delay required to turn it on or off. My only real complaint about the light is the tiny, hard to find switch button. While this helps keep it from being turned on in your pocket accidentally, it also makes it hard to find the button in the dark with your thumb using feel alone. Fortunately if it does happen to turn on in your pocket it will only start in Low mode. Since there is no electronic lockout built into the firmware, the ability to lock it out securely with a quarter turn of the head is an appreciated feature.
One other observation to be made: When in Turbo the light will step down to the previous mode after 3 minutes (180 seconds). The manufacturer’s site claims it steps down to high from Turbo which is incorrect. If you are in Low or medium modes when engaging Turbo, the light will step down to that mode after 3 minutes. This is also how it was in the first generation DQG Tiny 26650
* Press and hold the switch for 1 second to turn on into Low mode
* The Tiny always starts in low mode.
* A quick click cycles to the next mode in order: Low > Medium > High > Low….
* To access Turbo mode a quick double-click is needed.
* Once in Turbo mode, a single click will return you to the mode you were in prior to Turbo.
* Automatically steps down from Turbo to High after 3 minutes.
* To turn Off, press and hold the switch for 1 second
Output and Beamshots:
The beam profile of the DQG Tiny 26650 is pretty much exactly what you imagined it to be, with a wide center spot and gobs of smooth spill that fades in brightness to the outer edges. This is a pocket yard sweeper and a perfect tail stander indoors during power outages.
My OTF output numbers are measured in my Integrated Sphere that has been calibrated against many known lights. Throw was measured at 3 meters and converted back to 1 meter to the ANSI standard of 0.25 lux to determine throw distance. My sample is one of few lights I’ve tested to exceed the manufacturer’s claim.
PWM isn’t visible to me by the naked eye but did show in my digital camera when photographing in the lowest output level. In real life you shouldn’t notice it.
Time for some outdoor beam shots. This next gif shows the output in each mode. Distance to the trees is about 70 yards.
This next gif compares the DQG Tiny 26650 against several other lights. All lights are shot at their highest output.
The Hotness & Notness
- Very nice output for a pocket light
- Good build quality
- Good knurling
- Great beam pattern
- Output exceeds manufacturer’s claim
- Tail stands solidly
- Long runtime with 26650 cell
- Included adapter allows use of 18650 cells
- Nice, pre-lubed threads.
- Included lanyard is nice quality
- Nice tin gift box
- Press and hold to turn off and on
- Tiny switch is hard to find by feel.
The DQG Tiny 26650 is a great little light that gets a solid “Mac Approved” rating. It’s great output, tiny overall size and great runtime make this light a real winner. It’s not perfect but then I’ve not seen a perfect light yet. The pros far out weight the cons which, after all, are really minor annoyances more than major negatives. You can find the light at a few sites these days and if you wait long enough or shop around a bit you might get it even cheaper than the $45 list price. It’s really worth every penny and is the flashlight that usually ends up in my jacket pocket ever since it’s arrived a few weeks ago.
* The DQG Tiny 26650 was graciously provided for review by CNQualityGoods.com