Amutorch VG10 Plus Flashlight Review

Amutorch VG10 Plus Flashlight Review

Amutorch has released the VG10 Plus flashlight, a 21700 cell thrower, which has the design language from other Amutorch lights. Read on!


Official Specs and Features

Here’s a link to the Amutorch VG10 Plus Flashlight product page.

Versions

There is just one body color, but the host is available with three different emitters:  Cree XP-L HD NW, CW, and Lumileds Luxeon V.

This is the “medium head” light because there’s a smaller head version too.

Price and Coupon

The price is $35.95, but buy it at NealsGadgets with coupon AMUTORCH for 15% off! = $30.56 total.


Short Review

For $31, this is a nice entry into the 21700 light category.  I’d prefer it to have a Cree XP-L HI instead of HD, though.  The UI could be a bit more feature rich, too.  But it’s a nicely built, inexpensive light.

Long Review

The Big Table

Amutorch VG10
Emitter: Lumileds Luxeon V
Price in USD at publication time: $35.95
Cell: 1×18650
High Runtime Medium Runtime
LVP? Yes
Switch Type: Mechanical (Forward Clicky)
On-Board Charging? No
Claimed Lumens (lm) 2200
Measured Lumens (at 30s) 1075 (48.9% of claim)^
Claimed Throw (m) 531
Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s) 1413lux @ 5.869m = 48671cd
Throw (Calculated) (m) 441.2 (83.1% of claim)^
Item provided for review by: Neals Gadgets
All my Amutorch reviews!

^Measurement claims are for the XP-L HI version.  My review copy is a Lumileds Luxeon V version. (Output should be a little higher, throw should be a little lower than claimed.)  Measurement disclaimer:  I am an amateur flashlight reviewer.  I don’t have $10,000 or even $1,000 worth of testing equipment.  I test output and such in PVC tubes!!  Please consider claims within 10% of what I measure to be perfectly reasonable (accurate, even).

What’s Included

  • Amutorch VG10 Medium Head Flashlight
  • Lanyard
  • Spare O-rings (2)
  • Spare switch boot

Package and Manual

Standard Amutorch package.

That’s the whole manual.  I don’t speak that language, so it’s not really useful for me.

Build Quality and Disassembly

The built quality is really no different from the TC500 I just reviewed.  “I immediately notice that the cell tube and tailcap seem to be different color anodizing.  That won’t be a functional issue, but it’s just a little noticeable.  Still, the light is nicely built and seems quite solid.”  In fact, the body of these lights really seems to be the same.

I don’t know what the dark line going through the center of the light (seen below) is.  It’s not discernible by hand.  It has to do with how the finish is applied, I suppose, but what I know about anodizing, this wouldn’t happen.  Anyway, it’s not a functional issue.

The threads are anodized, square-cut, and big and thick.  They’re surprisingly gritty, which is entirely in the finish (it’s that kind of grit).  It’s not bad, not that annoying titanium grit… just noticeable.

The tailcap has a big chunk of brass and a nice thick spring.

The cell tube, of course, isn’t reversible.

The head has the same big thick spring, and the mcpcb is soldered to the pill.

The bezel unscrews easily, and the reflector comes right out.  Thus the emitter is easily accessed.

Size and Comps

Size:149mm length 149mm x 48mm (head) x25.4mm (tube)

Here’s the test light with the venerable Convoy S2+.  A very nice 18650 light.

And here’s the light beside my custom engraved TorchLAB BOSS 35, an 18350 light.  I reviewed the aluminum version of that light in both 35 and 70 formats.

Retention and Carry

There’s just one way to carry the light by design.  There’s a small ring collar under the tailcap, with a bumped-out lanyard connector.  This is removable, and the light will work fine without it.  The ring is very thick and very secure.

Power and Runtime

The VG10 is powered by a single 21700 cell.  With springs on both ends, any type of 21700 should work (even if all the types aren’t really available yet).  But this does mean that any other li-ion that fits should work – ie in a pinch you could use an 18650 (probably the longer the better).  Also, the drain on the higher modes isn’t that great, so just about any cell that fits would work fine.

Because it’s what I have on hand, and I like them all, I used a Molicel P42A 21700 cell.  I reviewed that cell, too.  Great cell – I like all the Molicels I’ve handled.

The highest mode is claimed at 1200 lumens, but the light doesn’t seem to quite hit that.  It’s essentially within a 10% difference though.  High holds out for over 2 minutes, but steps down hard to Medium, at 700 lumens.  The light does have LVP, and before that even has a warning – the emitter flashes on and off (that’s visible at the end of the runtime, too.)

Medium is very flat and well regulated.

Modes and Currents

Mode Mode Claimed Output (lm) Claimed Runtime Measured Lumens Tailcap Amps
High 1200 9,30^ 1075 3.00
Medium 600 4,20^ 703 1.50
Low 300 2* 55 0.08

^ I don’t know what the manual says for the duration.  It’s in Chinese.  Probably 2 hours, 4 hours 20 minutes, 9h30m, but I’m not certain.  Also, they tested with a 3500mAh 18650.

Pulse Width Modulation

No PWM visible, but there appears to be a bit of sawtooth on Medium.  Not something you’d likely notice, though.

For reference, here’s a baseline shot, with all the room lights off and almost nothing hitting the sensor.  Also, here’s the light with the worst PWM I could find.  I’m adding multiple timescales, so it’ll be easier to compare to the test light.  Unfortunately, the PWM on this light is so bad that it doesn’t even work with my normal scale, with is 50 microseconds (50us).  10ms5ms2ms1ms0.5ms0.2ms.  In a display faster than 0.2ms or so, the on/off cycle is more than one screen, so it’d just (very incorrectly) look like a flat line.  I wrote more about this Ultrafire WF-602C flashlight and explained a little about PWM too.

User Interface and Operation

There’s just one button on the VG10.  It’s a tail forward mechanical clicky.  It’s proud (prevents tailstanding), and clicky with a bunch of knurling for good grip.

The UI has mode memory, and there are just three modes.  So the UI is dead simple.  (The only thing simpler would be the same UI with no mode memory.)

Here’s a UI table!

State Action Result
Off Click On (Mode Memory)
Off Half press Momentary (Mode Memory)
On Click Off
Off Tap Mode advance (LMH)

The manual seems to mention a 100-lumen mode, but I’m not sure where that is in the UI – I couldn’t find it.

LED and Beam

Amutorch has a Lumileds Luxeon V in my review copy, though also available from Neal is a Cree XP-L HD emitter in CW and NW.  The reflector is deep and smooth and provides a beam with a tight hotspot and little spill.

LED Color Report (CRI and CCT)

The Lumileds Luxeon V used in the Amutorch VG10 has a CCT around 5000K and the CRI checks in moderately low at around 70.

Beamshots

These beamshots are always with the following settings:  f8, ISO100, 0.3s shutter, and manual 5000K exposure.

Tint vs BLF-348 (KillzoneFlashlights.com 219b version) (affiliate link)

I compare everything to the Killzone 219b BLF-348 because it’s inexpensive and has the best tint!

Conclusion

What I like

  • Low price for a 21700 thrower
  • Build quality is acceptable for a $31 light

What I don’t like

  • Emitter choice is odd – much rather a HI version of the XP-L in this light.

Notes

  • This content originally appeared at zeroair.org.  Please visit there for the best experience!
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2 thoughts on “Amutorch VG10 Plus Flashlight Review”

  1. Carel van Heugten

    Very solid and very positive review. To be true I read it with some question marks in my eyes.

    Why? Well the budget flashlights nowadays are of the same quality as the high ends. For instance Sofirn. My SP36 or C8F (also -included- 21700, €28) are superb in many ways. With userinterfaces that outclass products like Klarus or Nitecore. Anduril or Narsilm are flexible drivers with goodies like ramping and low moonlight too.

    In that insanely competitive market there is little room for lights that have no tailstand, a 2 color scheme, head/rest differ, hardly any UI, no moonlight a strange black line on the head. And 30 dollar without (?) 21700.

    Of course I hope this light will succeed but I have my doubts
    Carel

  2. Pingback: Flashlight Review 6-15-19 - FlashLight Packs

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