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The P7 Flashlight Thread

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The P7 Flashlight Thread

Old 09-12-08, 09:56 AM
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uke
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The P7 Flashlight Thread

Anyone else rocking a P7 from Deal Extreme? My 8-mode finally came in, and I'm enjoying the brilliant light output.



If you use the lights when riding, in general, or are interested in them, feel free to chime in with your experiences!
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Old 09-12-08, 02:19 PM
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the big issue with p7's is the burn time... what are getting in high or medium mode?
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Old 09-12-08, 06:29 PM
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Half your luck -- I'm still waiting for mine. Got the batteries & charger in good time but they were waiting for more P7s to come in.
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Old 09-12-08, 07:24 PM
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My 8 mode came today in the mail. I will charge it up and report back.

Is there anything special I should do concerning charging the batteries?
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Old 09-12-08, 07:30 PM
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Originally Posted by socalrider View Post
the big issue with p7's is the burn time... what are getting in high or medium mode?
It's supposed to get 1h in high. I just popped in a fresh battery and am timing medium mode now with a stopwatch.

Originally Posted by bmorey View Post
Half your luck -- I'm still waiting for mine. Got the batteries & charger in good time but they were waiting for more P7s to come in.
It'll get there soon, keep waiting! Like you, my batteries and charger came earlier, but the light itself kept going out of stock before finally arriving today.

Originally Posted by sknhgy View Post
My 8 mode came today in the mail. I will charge it up and report back.

Is there anything special I should do concerning charging the batteries?
Congrats. I don't think so; just charge until they're done. On mine, the light changes from red to green. I'm doing a battery life test now, and will update soon.
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Old 09-12-08, 10:40 PM
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It just gradually dims. I left mine on all night on high mode and it was pretty dim in the morning.
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Old 09-13-08, 08:46 AM
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I tried my light this morning after the batteries had been on charge all night. Seems like a nice, solid little flashlight. Good output. Should make a good headlight.

I got the Trustfire multifunctional charger and it is a little cheesy. One contact slides to accomodate different batteries. The slide binds, however. After 12 hours the charge indicator light was still red but the batteries worked in the light. I can fiddle with the batteries and make the indicator light change colors.

Do you think it would hurt to put a tiny amount of anti-siezure compound on the flashlight threads?
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Old 09-13-08, 08:52 AM
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I've got the multifunction charger too. When I've got only one battery, I charge it in the left slot. Not sure if that makes a difference, but I've had previous chargers that instructed as much, so, who knows?

2h30m later, the light is still undimmed at medium.
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Old 09-13-08, 10:50 AM
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i ordered one as well right when it came back into stock. I should be here sometime next week. hopefully sooner rather than later. I hope it works for some of my shorter night rides ~30-45 minutes.
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Old 09-13-08, 12:01 PM
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Okay, I just finished a test. I got about 4h of medium brightness. By 5h, the light had started to dim somewhat. I turned it off at 5h30m. At that point, I'd estimate the medium setting was about as bright as the low setting is on a fresh battery. I haven't done any endurance testing on high, but general consensus seems to be that should last about an hour. I've got two batteries, so I'll just take both whenever I'm out, and pop the used one in the charger each night.
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Old 09-13-08, 12:52 PM
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I've been using a DX P7 light for a couple of months and have really enjoyed it. Not wanting to annoy oncoming riders and drivers any more than necessary, I masked off about the top 3/8 of the lens with electric tape to mimic the beam cutoff of a car light. This is just a waste of light of course, but the P7 has plenty enough to spare. I like that the beam pattern is more diffuse than my other flashlight based headlights, so you don't lose stuff in the relatively dimmer sidespill, but it's still so bright the sidespill is useful. I get just over an hour out of it on high, but I use it most of the time on medium and don't even think about it, just switch the battery every two or three days.
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Old 09-14-08, 10:18 PM
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I went riding this afternoon (grocery run), and used a P7 in the front and a PB in the back. It was great; I don't know if it made a difference, but I liked knowing I was visible. Even outdoors, the light is too bright to look at up close. I plan to use it (and the rear blinkie) from now on whenever I do grocery runs.
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Old 09-14-08, 10:24 PM
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I'm *this* close to pulling the trigger on one of these; I'd love to know if anyone's compared it to something like a 20W halogen, which is what it'd be replacing in my case.
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Old 09-16-08, 11:03 AM
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I ordered one of these and will be moving my L2D to my helmet (wheres it's spottier beam should be very useful). Can anyone post some beamshots on bike?

Does anyone have any ideas on whether trying to power the light with an external battery pack would be worthwhile?
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Old 09-17-08, 07:38 PM
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I took my first ride tonight with both the P7 and the Dinotte 200L headlight. There was absolutely no comparison. I did most of the ride with the P7. Then, at one point I shut off the P7 and turned on the Dinotte. I felt like I had gone back to using one of those $20 led headlights. The P7 was much brighter and it lit up a much larger area.
I just hope the P7 proves to be a robust design. Time will tell.
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Old 09-17-08, 08:31 PM
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Originally Posted by sknhgy View Post
I took my first ride tonight with both the P7 and the Dinotte 200L headlight. There was absolutely no comparison. I did most of the ride with the P7. Then, at one point I shut off the P7 and turned on the Dinotte. I felt like I had gone back to using one of those $20 led headlights. The P7 was much brighter and it lit up a much larger area.
I just hope the P7 proves to be a robust design. Time will tell.
Really? Wow. I'd had some thoughts on this matter myself, but since Dinottes are held in high esteem here, like the Fenix lights, I didn't want to say anything. But if you're really getting a much better light from a $40 P7 than from a Dinotte costing four times as much ($160)...that's impressive.

Personally, I rode home tonight for the first time with my P7. It was great. For the first time, I could actually see. There wasn't a doubt about what was in front of me. I could angle it up or down or wherever, and I could still see. I don't know if cars coming from the opposite lane were slowing down, but I have no doubt they saw me. I'm never using the MUP again at night; the road's a far better option, and with this light, it's a road I can see.
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Old 09-17-08, 08:35 PM
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Oh man. I just went to Dinotte lighting. The 200L lights are 200 lumens. The P7 gives more than that on medium, I think. On high, a P7 gives off about 700 lumens. The most powerful Dinotte seems to be the 600, which gives off 600 lumens at a cost of about $400.

So for one tenth the price, you can have a light more powerful than any Dinotte. I think it's clear that the P7 might be the most powerful light you can buy that doesn't involve DIY and halogen.
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Old 09-17-08, 08:49 PM
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I run 3 P7s: 2 on the bars and one on my helmet. The helmet gives off the greatest range ( I also use it on high), but is a little heavy. I use use the left bar as a strobe on cloudy mornings, and sometimes cars pull over to let me pass at redlights! Most of the time both my handle bar lights are on medium. I keep a fresh set of 18651s in the paniers just in case, but I have never ran out of juice commuting (24 miles both ways).
On high I think the estimates at CPF are around 450 lumens, still great but not the advertised 900 lumens. Also there are some shoddy soldering in these lights that limit he current drawn off he battery. An easy fix according to some members at CPF, but I haven't needed it using three of those.
Not bad for the price of one DL200!
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Old 09-17-08, 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by uke View Post
Oh man. I just went to Dinotte lighting. The 200L lights are 200 lumens. The P7 gives more than that on medium, I think. On high, a P7 gives off about 700 lumens. The most powerful Dinotte seems to be the 600, which gives off 600 lumens at a cost of about $400.

So for one tenth the price, you can have a light more powerful than any Dinotte. I think it's clear that the P7 might be the most powerful light you can buy that doesn't involve DIY and halogen.
I want to try a P7 light too but one thing that would be an issue, is the short runtime. The DiNotte 600L will do 3.5 hours at full power on one battery pack, then eases you down to LOW to get you home. Some of my round-trip commutes actually do get that long! What's the runtime on your P7 on HIGH, and is it holding full output through the whole run, or is it drifting down as it goes (as is the case with many 18650 lights)? Anyone here got a 2 x 18650 version to report on?

I also think your 700-lumen estimate might be a little optomistic LumaPower's high-end P7 light, the DX-1, is rated for only 600 lumens max, and that's driven at 2.4 amps from 2 x 18650, with a runtime of about 90 minutes (reference). The cheapie 1 x 18650 P7 lights appear to run about 1.8-2.0 amps (reference). So maybe 450-500 lumens max would be a more realistic guess? Because at 700 lumens sustained, I guestimate you'd suck an 18650 dry in 30 minutes.

Bottom line: at 600 lumens, a P7 flashlight pulls 10 watts. If you have one 18650 containing (3.5Vavg x 2.4aH) = 8.4 watt-hours, you can run at 600 lumens for 0.84 hours. If you're getting more runtime than that... you're not running 600 lumens.

That said, I'm all for large quantities of lumens at affordable prices!

Last edited by mechBgon; 09-17-08 at 09:47 PM.
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Old 09-17-08, 09:41 PM
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Boy, that really does look tempting. I'm currently shopping for lights for this winter. If it weren't for the run time I'd be ordering one right now. I'd have to carry 3 batteries with me just to finish my commute when it's dark both ways. Only one with the new Dinotte 400L. Definitely makes the decision tougher though. The price per lumen is fantastic on that P7. Looks to be about $100 dollars for the P7 with all the needed equipment vs. $270 for the Dinotte.
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Old 09-18-08, 01:01 AM
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one of the best looking p7's that is out there right now is from electrolumens.. He is known for great regulation to maximize runtime.. I have bought flashlights from him over the past 5 years and have never been dissapointed. They are priced a little higher than some of the chinese made ones but will yield 1:30 to 2:00 of runtime on high..

https://elektrolumens.com/EDC-P7/EDC-P7.html
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Old 09-18-08, 04:22 AM
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I got the Trustfire multifunctional charger and it is a little cheesy. One contact slides to accomodate different batteries. The slide binds, however. After 12 hours the charge indicator light was still red but the batteries worked in the light. I can fiddle with the batteries and make the indicator light change colors.

Good luck with the charger! Mine had the same issues, and quit working after a very short time. Hope you have better luck.
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Old 09-18-08, 04:36 AM
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with the trustfire charger if you are charging 1 cell you need to use the left side only.. The pila charger is the best 18650 charger out there but it is not cheap..

https://www.flashlightz.com/product.php?product=171829
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Old 09-18-08, 06:37 AM
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Has anyone here had luck modding a P7 light to use an external battery pack? I'm pretty comfortable with DIY electronics so I think I may try it. I'm thinking of using a battery pack (well 6 or so batteries taped together and wired in parallel) to power 2 P7 lights. Now, if I keep these batteries always together, there shouldn't be a problem with the voltages being different and inducing them to charge other batteries in the pack but has anyone tried to charge a bundle like this with a normal charger?

As for actually connecting the battery, what is standard procedure here? I was going to cut out a cylinder on a lathe (non-metal) and put some metal contacts on the end and then probably just drill a small hole in the barrel of the light to run wires from that metal contacts out to a quick disconnect harness.
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Old 09-18-08, 07:08 AM
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Are there any decent P7 flashlights that take three AA batteries? A single 18650 battery is 3.7V, so three NiMH AA rechargeables (3 x 1.2V) should be equivalent. I have a healthy investment in rechargeable AA for my other lights and not interested in another battery type & charger.
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