Lumintop PS03 3*XM-L2 U2 Compact Search Light

Lumintop PS03 3*XM-L2 U2 Compact Search Light

* Lumintop PS03 provided for review by Lumintop.


 

SPECIFICATIONS FROM LUMINTOP

==============================================

PS03 Search Flashlight

Features:

  • Utilizes a premium 3* XM-L2 U2 LED that emits 2800 lumens max output with up to 50,000 hours life time span

  • Side switch cycles through four brightness levels, activates strobe by double click

  • A highly diffused acrylic lens emits a smooth floodlight

  • Side switch in the head for fast and convenient operation

  • All aluminum “unibody” construction design

  • The flat end allows the flashlight to tail stand for applications like emergency household lighting or camping

  • Purpose design for searching, rescue or outdoor activity

  • Powered by 4*18650 lithium-ion battery

  • Integrated camera type thread mounting point for user to use the PS03 on standard tripods as an exterior light or for fixed illumination

  • High efficiency circuit to maintains constant brightness


==============================================

PROS

  • Lovely machining.
  • Perfect anodizing.
  • 1/4 twist power lockout at tail.
  • Output exceeds manufacturer claims!
  • Wide hotspot with plenty of flood.
  • Current controlled output with ZERO visible PWM.
  • Turbo is not momentary like the SR Mini.
  • Very compact!  Only 0.9mm longer than the Olight SR Mini
  • Block knurling offers good grip without being too aggressive.
  • Rock-solid feel.  Does not feel cheap in the hand like some premium
    brands do IMO.
  • 4*18650 cells for good run time.
  • Battery carrier fits all 18650 cells and can be inserted either way.
  • Solid tail standing for emergency lighting
  • Very good feel with electronic switch and switch boot.
  • Smooth, well anodized and lubricated square threading.
  • Tripod mount hole.
  • Removable lanyard mount.
  • Nice lanyard included
  • Great packaging.  Box much nicer than cheapish Fenix packaging.

CONS

  • “Low” mode is more of a Medium mode.
  • Desperately needs a Moon low and/or true low mode.
  • TIR optics not AR coated.
  • In a new era where nearly all high output torches have copper MCPCBs, the aluminum MCPCB feels dated.
  • Spring loaded anode contacts on either end of cell carriage offer potential resistance and aren’t needed.
  • No holster included or optional

^ The PS03 comes in a very nice, sturdy box with fitted foam insert for the light.

^ Graphic spec icons on the box side.

^ Detailed specs on box bottom.

^   The box contains the PS03, lanyard mount, lanyard, spare O-ring, and User manual.

^   The User Manual is all in English and provides all the information needed.

^   Opposite the switch is a threaded tripod mount.

^   A closer look at the stainless steel threaded lanyard mount.

^   While attached, the lanyard mount makes a great anti-roll mechanism.  I find it to also be a great place to hook my forefinger over for a more secure grip.

^   The PS03 is a handsome, compact light.  Less than a millimeter longer than an SR  Mini and just a few millimeters wider.  It’s a great alternative!

^   Clean, even etching of the Lumintop logo and PS03 model number on the head.

^   The Lumintop logo and website domain are cleanly laser etched into the base of the light.

^   Knurling on the tail cap looks great and provides great grip when screwing/unscrewing it.

^   The same great knurling is used on the main body of the PS03 in two wider bands.

^   Deep fins on the head surround the emitter shelf area for much better heat sinking potential than similar competition.  The fins themselves are nicely rounded and smooth.

^   Surrounding the switch boot is a stainless steel bezel that matches nicely with the main stainless steel bezel on the head of the light.  The switch boot itself is thick and provides good tactile feel.

^   The Lumintop logo and light’s model name are cleanly etched on the head of the light above the switch.  I will say that the etching on the PS03 is right up with there with the best I’ve seen on any light regardless of price.

^   The smooth, polished stainless steel bezel has four slots cut into it that allow almost anything to be used to remove the bezel if needed.  They also provide just enough opening for light to be seen if left on while face down.  I wouldn’t call it crenelation, per say, as it isn’t any use for a tactical purpose.

^   Ultra clear polycarbonate TIR optics are centered perfectly over the three Cree XM-L2 emitters.

^   No visible AR layer can be seen but then again, Lumintop never claimed for any to be there.  It would have been a nice touch but the light isn’t a thrower and from my experience thrower type lights are the ones to benefit the most from AR coatings.

^   Another quick look at the front of the light.

^   The bezel threads off and on smoothly and applies pressure to the lens, sandwiching the O-ring that seals out moisture between the lens and the head of the light.

^   With the lens/optics removed you can just make out the O-ring that sits on a lip just under the lens.

^   Here I have the O-ring removed and you can see the lip that the O-ring sits on.  It’s a nice, simple design that works perfectly.

^   I look at the Cree XM-L2 emitters that are mounted to a single aluminum MCPCB.  The MCPCB is secured to the emitter shelf with screws.   Under the MCPCB there is white thermal grease.  Solder joints are good and the wires used aren’t crazy thin.

^   The TIR optics are nicely made and give a wide spill area and a broad center hot spot.

^   Back at the other end of the light, with the tail cap removed we can see the solid cell carrier.

^  A better look at the inside of the tail cap.  The raised and exposed inner lip on the inside of the head presses against the negative end of the cell carrier and conducts the current without the use of any additional springs.

^   The tail threads are anodized and came well lubricated from the factory.  The anodized threads allow for mechanical lockout and/or storage with zero parasitic drain from the switch circuitry.  A thick O-ring seals out water and moisture.

^   Looking inside the main body we see more clean machining and anodizing  The anode spring on the rear of the driver could be a bit thicker but does the job and provides an extra bit of impact protection  and uninterrupted current flow.

^   The cell carrier itself is a 2S2P design and is very solid and well made.  It’s also long enough to fit nearly all protected cells you might want to use in the light.

^   A better look at the nice springs and contacts used in the carrier.

^   If you happened to have some freakishly long cells it would be possible to lengthen the carrier using shims thanks to the use of Phillips machine screws throughout the carrier.

^   My only complain with the carrier is that the center anode contact of either end is spring loaded when it doesn’t need to be.  The short springs that have to be used can only create additional current resistance when the light is in Turbo mode.  The carrier itself is designed so that t doesn’t matter which end of the carrier is towards the head.

The pictures above compare the PS03 physically against a few other popular compact multiple emitter flashlights.  From left to right in both pictures are the Black Shadow Terminator 2, the Olight SR Mini Intimidator, the Lumintop PS03, the Fenix LD60, and the ThruNite TN30.  While not quite as thin as the SR Mini, the PS03 is barely longer and only a bit wider but packs in a 4th 18650 cell compared to the OSR Mini’s 3 cells.  Another huge difference between those two lights is that the PS03 has a dedicated Turbo mode that stays on for 3 minutes before stepping down to high.  In the SR Mini Turbo mode can only be accessed as long as you press the button down as it is a momentary mode and not dedicated.

Obviously the SR Mini is the closest competitor to the PS03 in both size and output.  To the PS03’s credit it hasn’t failed to work and has never let me down.  My SR Mini crapped the bed in just a couple of days use after getting it.  Sure, it is under warranty and I can send it in to get fixed but the point still stands that a rattle in the driver area right out of the box quickly turned into intermittent outages and finally a permanent outage in less than an hour of total use.  I can say, without any hesitation that the output of the PS03 positively destroys the output of my SR Mini,  Then again a Fauxton keychain light could say the very same thing.  Regardless, score one major point for the PS03.

USER INTERFACE

The PS03 has one of the easiest UI’s going.  Nothing fancy, nothing complicated, just 4 output levels and a hidden strobe mode.

  • From OFF a 0.5 second press turns the PS03 ON in the last regular mode it was in when you last turned it off.
  • Once ON a quick click shifts to the next higher output level in order until you reach the Turbo mode.  From Turbo another click takes you back to Low mode.
  • In any mode a quick double-click will engage strobe.  To quit Strobe a single click will return you to the mode you were in when Strobe was engaged.
  • To turn OFF simply press and hoild the switch for 0.5 seconds.
  • Thanks to last mode memory the light will turn ON in the last used mode (except Strobe).

The switch itself is in a perfect placement for your thumb and is easy to locate especially if you have the lanyard mount installed.  The electronic switch itself is quiet and has great tactile feedback.

PERFORMANCE

The PS03 is clearly a flooder but is good for use out to 200-300 yds easily.  As said in my cons list, it could really use a better Low mode as well as a dedicated Moon low.  The current Low mode is more of what I would consider a medium but I am one who appreciates a good Low and Moon.  Those who don’t care for really low modes will probably appreciate the existing Low mode.

How does it perform in reality compared to the manufacturer’s claimed output levels? Let’s have a look at my testing results.  OTF lumen output was measured in a 16″ Integrated Sphere that has been calibrated against many known lights as well as against other known accurate spheres.  Throw was measured
at 3 meters and calculated back to 1 meter.

BEAMSHOTS

The beam shots below were taken at an empty lot across the street from me.  It’s difficult to locate a decent spot for pictures where I live in the city.  There is ambient light from nearby street lamps and the lights don’t look as well in the photos as they do in real life but it’s close enough to see the differences between the 3 lights used.

Since my BST is modded and the SR Mini is DOA, I chose the TN30 and Fenix LD60 to compare with the PS03

 

 

CONCLUSION

Definitely “Mac Approved”!  The PS03 is one of my favorite lights.  Fantastic build quality, great compact size, awesome output, zero PWM and long run time with current control and 4 18650 cells.  All it could use is a good low mode to be perfect.  If you are looking for a solid little flooder with big output the PS03 is one to consider.

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2 thoughts on “Lumintop PS03 3*XM-L2 U2 Compact Search Light

  1. Pingback: Lumintop PS03 3*XM-L2 U2 Compact Search Light | Johnny Mac Reviews

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