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  1. #1
    uke
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    Ultrafire WF-501B vs. Car Taillights

    So on a trip a few days ago, I stopped to compare my car's taillights to the Ultrafire, which I compared to the Superflash here. The battery in the Ultrafire was charged a few days beforehand, and probably had up to an hour's use before the shoot.

    Visually, the outdoor scene was slightly darker than it appears in the shooting, but I didn't want to keep fiddling with the exposure, and this was close enough. Shots were on manual at F2.8 with a 1/2 sec exposure time and ISO 400. I could have taken clearer shots, but also wanted to do this quickly, so made some compromises. The cars in the far background were approximately 80 feet away. Pictures were downscaled to 800x600 for posting here.



    Baseline. No lights.



    Car taillights on (brake pressed), Ultrafire off.



    Ultrafire on, car taillights off.



    Both Ultrafire and car taillights on.

    In conclusion, the Ultrafire was much visually brighter than the car lights, both in terms of illuminating cars and objects at a distance and the ground up close. I didn't expect it to do nearly this well in comparison, and was very impressed.
    Last edited by uke; 06-09-09 at 09:42 PM.

    JesseDuncan:I just love how "cars will be forced to cross the double yellow lines on dangerous limited visibility roads".

    I don't want to have a head on but oh god, I HAVE to fling myself into oncoming traffic to pass, theres no alternative!!!

  2. #2
    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    what is the runtime??

  3. #3
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by socalrider View Post
    what is the runtime??
    To 50%, not to when the thing no longer runs.......thanks.

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    I tested mine.

    Here's some measurements, with a fresh battery:

    Current draw at battery = 850 mA
    Voltage measured at LED = 3.56V
    Weight = 137g inc. battery

    I put a fresh battery in at 7.33pm and the torch ran continuously until 11.30pm.

    So the runtime is 4 hours less a few minutes on a single 18650.

    highly recommended
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  5. #5
    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unknown Cyclist View Post
    I tested mine.

    Here's some measurements, with a fresh battery:

    Current draw at battery = 850 mA
    Voltage measured at LED = 3.56V
    Weight = 137g inc. battery

    I put a fresh battery in at 7.33pm and the torch ran continuously until 11.30pm.

    So the runtime is 4 hours less a few minutes on a single 18650.

    highly recommended
    Thanks for the info.. Definitely worth giving a try as a tailight.. Is the led red or does it use a filter? Were you using UF or Trustfire 2400 / 2500 mah 18650 battery?

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    Quote Originally Posted by socalrider View Post
    Thanks for the info.. Definitely worth giving a try as a tailight.. Is the led red or does it use a filter? Were you using UF or Trustfire 2400 / 2500 mah 18650 battery?
    It's a red LED and it's very bright too.

    Trustfire TR18650 2500mAh 3.7V.
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  7. #7
    Zoom zoom zoom zoom bonk znomit's Avatar
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    I see:
    • Car taillights are designed to shine at cars behind, not at the ground.
    • Reflectors direct light back to the source (camera right behind the ultrafire).


    Beamshots onto a white wall please!

  8. #8
    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    Well if you consider that some of the brighter tailights are based on 1/2 W or 1W luxeon stars.. This tailight at a minimum is going to put out 3x to 4x more lumens than either the Superflash or NR Cherry Bomb..

  9. #9
    uke
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    Quote Originally Posted by znomit View Post
    I see:
    • Car taillights are designed to shine at cars behind, not at the ground.
    • Reflectors direct light back to the source (camera right behind the ultrafire).


    Beamshots onto a white wall please!
    1. The Ultrafire was also aimed backwards, but partially downward; it illuminates both cars behind and leaves a partial output on the ground, as you can see in the pictures.

    2. Your second point is true, but it doesn't change the results, as the camera was "behind" both the Ultrafire and the car taillights; neither was offered an advantage here.

    3. I already did such a shoot, as referenced in the original post. That was a comparison of the Ultrafire vs. the Superflash, with a P7 thrown in for variety.

    JesseDuncan:I just love how "cars will be forced to cross the double yellow lines on dangerous limited visibility roads".

    I don't want to have a head on but oh god, I HAVE to fling myself into oncoming traffic to pass, theres no alternative!!!

  10. #10
    uke
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    I'm considering running a saddlebag so I could mount two or even three of these lights at a time behind the bike. However, I'd much rather have one light, and not deal with the complexities of turning on and off multiple lights, or charging multiple sets of batteries, so I haven't done this yet. Hopefully Ultrafire or another manufacturer comes out with more powerful red lights soon. This one is a great start, though.

    JesseDuncan:I just love how "cars will be forced to cross the double yellow lines on dangerous limited visibility roads".

    I don't want to have a head on but oh god, I HAVE to fling myself into oncoming traffic to pass, theres no alternative!!!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by uke View Post
    However, I'd much rather have one light, and not deal with the complexities of turning on and off multiple lights, or charging multiple sets of batteries, so I haven't done this yet.
    I know what you mean, I've got 5 rear lights to turn on, 2 front lights and 2 independent helmet lights.

    Takes a while to turn them all off again as well, however, redundancy is a wonderful thing.

    Last edited by Unknown Cyclist; 06-16-09 at 11:20 AM.
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  12. #12
    uke
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    ^ Yeah, that's what I'm trying to stay away from. It's enough trouble turning on and off two lights (one in front, one in back) as it is.

    JesseDuncan:I just love how "cars will be forced to cross the double yellow lines on dangerous limited visibility roads".

    I don't want to have a head on but oh god, I HAVE to fling myself into oncoming traffic to pass, theres no alternative!!!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by uke View Post
    ^ Yeah, that's what I'm trying to stay away from. It's enough trouble turning on and off two lights (one in front, one in back) as it is.
    I start turning them off about 1/4 mile from home, by the time I get to the door they are all off apart from the mudguard light that I can't reach.....
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  14. #14
    Fat Bottomed Fredwina Heifzilla's Avatar
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    I just got mine two days ago and it's all installed on the bike. Blindingly bright and visible. This was an awesome value.
    "A bicycle does get you there and more. And there is always the thin edge of danger to keep you alert and comfortably apprehensive. Dogs become dogs again and snap at your raincoat; potholes become personal. And getting there is all the fun."

  15. #15
    BeaverTerror Yan's Avatar
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    PBSF vs Ultrafire.

    Yan

    2013 True North custom touring; 2010 Novara Randonee; 2009 Unicycle.com Club 24"; 1989 Miele Tivoli; 1979 Colnago Sport

  16. #16
    uke
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    ^ Yup, the day I got mine in, I ran a comparison, and realized I'd never use the PBSF again.

    Quote Originally Posted by uke View Post
    Okay, here are the shots. All were taken at 1600x1200, manual, F2.8, exposure time 1/10 (deliberately underexposed to reduce overexposure from the lights), without flash. Backdrop in all cases was a white wall beside a curtained window. My P7 on high was included as a comparison. I used both Superflashes (regular and stealth models) when shooting, but eventually went with the stealth's pictures, as there was no difference between the two. Batteries in the PBSFs are several months old, but both are lightly used, and always in the flash mode. Shots of the Superflash were in steady mode. I swapped the battery from the P7 to the Ultrafire when shooting, and it was freshly charged. All pictures were downscaled to 800x600 for posting here.

    The first set were taken at a distance of approximately 1 meter.









    Respectively, they show the blank wall, the SF, the Ultrafire, and the P7.

    The second set were taken at a distance of approximately 2 meters.














    Respectively, they show the blank wall, the Ultrafire, the Ultrafire with the SF one foot to the left, the Ultrafire with the SF two feet to the left, the Ultrafire alone, and the P7.

    Here is the gallery view.

    Overall, it was no contest. The Ultrafire is far brighter than the Superflash, even taking into account the Superflash being powered by not-new batteries. The SF still has the advantages of being smaller, lighter, having a flash mode, and an ultimately far longer battery life (due to the flash option). The Ultrafire, however, is cheaper, far brighter, and a brilliant option to fill the uncanny valley between the SF and the 140 Dinotte. If I can attach it, it will be my main tail light from now on.

    JesseDuncan:I just love how "cars will be forced to cross the double yellow lines on dangerous limited visibility roads".

    I don't want to have a head on but oh god, I HAVE to fling myself into oncoming traffic to pass, theres no alternative!!!

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heifzilla View Post
    I just got mine two days ago and it's all installed on the bike. Blindingly bright and visible. This was an awesome value.
    How and where have you mounted it ?
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  18. #18
    Fat Bottomed Fredwina Heifzilla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Unknown Cyclist View Post
    How and where have you mounted it ?
    It's nothing exciting. It's on the left chain stay. I just used a worm clamp, some electrical tape, and some old handlebar grip foam. Works great, is solid, and I can easily switch out the batteries when needed.

    "A bicycle does get you there and more. And there is always the thin edge of danger to keep you alert and comfortably apprehensive. Dogs become dogs again and snap at your raincoat; potholes become personal. And getting there is all the fun."

  19. #19
    Fat Bottomed Fredwina Heifzilla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by uke View Post
    ^ Yup, the day I got mine in, I ran a comparison, and realized I'd never use the PBSF again.
    I still use my PBSF. It's my blinky on the back of my rear rack.
    "A bicycle does get you there and more. And there is always the thin edge of danger to keep you alert and comfortably apprehensive. Dogs become dogs again and snap at your raincoat; potholes become personal. And getting there is all the fun."

  20. #20
    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    Interesting mounting.. Does anyone have the links to the DX knockoff Lockblocks / bikeblocks..

    I was going to order 2 of these lights tomorrow and figured I would get some extra mounts..

  21. #21
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by socalrider View Post
    Interesting mounting.. Does anyone have the links to the DX knockoff Lockblocks / bikeblocks..

    I was going to order 2 of these lights tomorrow and figured I would get some extra mounts..
    I think they only have the bikeblocks knock off. http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.12000

  22. #22
    Fat Bottomed Fredwina Heifzilla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by socalrider View Post
    Interesting mounting..
    My bike is rather "Doris". I'm ok with that
    "A bicycle does get you there and more. And there is always the thin edge of danger to keep you alert and comfortably apprehensive. Dogs become dogs again and snap at your raincoat; potholes become personal. And getting there is all the fun."

  23. #23
    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziemas View Post
    I think they only have the bikeblocks knock off. http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.12000
    Thanks for the link, I was wondering why I could not find the lockblocks on there site.. Does anyone know of anything new and interesting on DX right now?

  24. #24
    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by socalrider View Post
    Thanks for the link, I was wondering why I could not find the lockblocks on there site.. Does anyone know of anything new and interesting on DX right now?
    I just picked up a 5 mode 4.2V R2 drop-in for my helmet light. That's about all I've seen lately that was interesting.

  25. #25
    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziemas View Post
    I just picked up a 5 mode 4.2V R2 drop-in for my helmet light. That's about all I've seen lately that was interesting.
    looks like this one: http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.25369

    are you dropping this into a surefire light, if so which one's are compatible?

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