I have a long list of JETBeams that I’m fairly fond of…. I think JETBeam makes a great product, and even some specialty lights that are among my favorite (JETBeam Jet-II Pro in titanium!). Here’s a much more tactical, bigger, and huge output 18650 light from JETBeam, with the Cree XHP70.2!
There are two versions of this light, differing only in reflector style. There’s an orange peel (OP) and smooth (SMO) version. What I have for review is the OP version.
$139.95, with a street price of just a little less, around $135.
This is a fine light, and well built. I like the massive emitter, and accept the design choices that lead to this being a large 18650 light.
- JETBeam TH20
- Spare o-ring
- Spare boot
- Nylon pouch
- JETBeam HR26 18650 (not pictured)
- Manual (etc)
Package and Manual
The package for this light is surprisingly thin, and by the time it arrive to me, was practically destroyed. The light inside and all the parts, however, were fine. The box has the normal compliment of product photos and specs and features, including an output/runtime table.
The manual is a long paper with the same info on either side, one in English and one in Chinese. It’s a nice and clear manual, and has the required information.
Build Quality and Disassembly
The first thing you’ll probably notice when handling the TH20 is that the anodizing is great. It feels thick, is nice and smooth, and has very good coverage throughout the light. Then you’ll probably notice the heft; it’s big for being a single 18650 light. That’s fairly understandable since the reflector is deep (makes for a big head). But the cell tube is also quite thick, and has an internal sleeve as well.
There are fins around the head of the light at approximate emitter area, ie the pill. And crenelations on the bezel which allow light to show through when headstanding.
The cell tube has an inner sleeve. This sleeve is not removable (as on the Olight M2R). Not only that, the cell tube is quite long too – when the cell is in, the end of the cell is about 5mm down in the tube. Not a problem of course, just a note on how long the cell tube is. There’s a stiff, double spring on the tail cap, and a button on the positive end. And note those big beefy threads on the tube. They’re unanodized but have lube and are also square cut. Nice threads.
The bezel may be removed by unscrewing.
Officially the dimensions are 160.8mm x 40mm (head) x 28mm (tail), and 230.5g (without cell).
Like I said, this is a pretty big light for being a single 18650. Of course big is beautiful…. Especially with such a massive emitter in there!
Below, the TH20 seen with the Klarus XT11GT, which is similar in use but has a different emitter. So it’s a bit of a different class light.
Provided with this light is a nylon pouch, with the typical plastic d-ring. The pouch is directional (bezel up) and open at the bottom.
There is also a lanyard, which attaches in the tailcap (either side, your choice.)
No pocket clip is included, but there are two spaces for a friction clip. Be reminded that the body is quite thick, and would need a large clip!
JETBeam is kind enough to include a 18650 cell with this light. It’s listed as 2600mAh, and makes no mention of protection. The light also supports 2xCR123A. No testing was performed with this cell option. (The photo below might be the best I have displaying the girth of this light; compare it to the 18650!) The cell goes with the positive end toward the emitter end of the light.
The manual makes no mention of a timed stepdown, but this certainly looks to have timed steps. They could be voltage based too, but I was unable to get my setup working to test this – the e-switch on the tailcap thwarted those attempts. The manual does mention “temperature control system” but as far as I can see in my data, the steps aren’t based on temperature. And output doesn’t vary with temperature at all (at least in my tests, it can’t be seen that output varies based on temp.)
User Interface and Operation
There are two tail switches. One, in the center and with a rubber boot, is a mechanical forward clicky. The other is an e-paddle-switch and fully surrounds the mechanical switch. It can be pressed from two sides of the light (so in reality, it feels like there are three switches on the end of the light.)
Below you can see why the light won’t tailstand, but also note that’s where the lanyard attaches. See the paddle switch on both sides of the tailcap. It’s just one switch, but has two access points.
|Off||Click FW||On (memory)|
|Off||Half press FW||Momentary (memory)|
|Off||Press E||Momentary Strobe|
|On||Press E||Mode cycle (H>L direction)|
|Off||Hold E (>1s)||Constant Strobe|
|On||Hold E (>1s)||Momentary Strobe|
|On||Click E 3x||3450 lumen output|
The UI isn’t really complicated, but there are some interesting choices that make this light seem to want to be in Strobe mode. And it’s understandable that a tactical light like this might cycle from H>L, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it. Also no guaranteed direct access to low…. Again probably fine for a tactical light.
|Mode||Mode Claimed Output (lm)||Claimed Runtime||Mode Measured Lux|
|Turbo||3450 (or 1900)||1.1h||33500|
LED and Beam
The massive emitter in this light is a Cree XHP70.2. It’s a cool look, and provides loads of output. The beam tint isn’t great (leaning toward green on the spill, and blue/cool in the center).
Tint vs BLF-348
Beamshots, Runtime, and Lux Measurements
|Glamour Shots||Beamshots [0.3″, f/8, ISO 100, 5000k]|
|Claimed Lumens (lm)||3150|
|Lux (Measured)||318 lux @ 6.237 m|
|Candela (Calculated) in cd||12370.3|
|Throw (Calculated) (m)||222.4|
|Throw (Claimed) (m)||320|
There’s really not much that compares to this light in a single 18650 format, with a Cree XHP70.2. Same for the previous gen emitter too, the XHP70. That makes fairly good sense, since it’s a 6V emitter, with a forward voltage of 5.6V or so…. A light would need to boost the voltage from a single 18650 to power this huge emitter.
There are lights doing this though! For example, the Acebeam L30 is a formidable opponent. It boasts more lumens, is one of the first lights compatible with 20700, has on-board charging via micro-USB, and is overall smaller. It seems to lack a touch of the tactical edge that the JETBeam has, though.
What I like
- Build quality is very good
- Output on a high quality cell is great
- Available in SMO and OP reflector styles
- Has a great presence due to it’s size.
What I don’t like
- Not a fan of the UI, with it’s many accesses to strobe.
- As big as this light is, it seems like it should offer on-board charging, or 20700 support, or something.
I’m currently working on the Imax B6 Mini (still haven’t really figured out how to test that, if I’m honest), and a bunch more flashlights. Next will probably be either a couple of Nitecores, or a new (to me) brand: Amutorch.
- This light was provided by GearBest for review. I was not paid to write this review.
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- Whether or not I have a coupon for this light, I do have a bunch of coupons!! Have a look at my spreadsheet for those coupons. Note I’ve upgraded that sheet so that now, you may subscribe and get notifications when the sheet is edited!!