I find no better way to start 2020 than with a post about a RovyVon light. RovyVon was huge for me in 2019, and I have this post and more upcoming from them. This is the A28, a clear body light which has two secondary emitters – red and UV.
Official Specs and Features
There are a bunch of versions of this series of RovyVon lights. But the A28 in specific is available with Cree XP-L (likely HD) and Nichia 219c. There are also three secondary options: Red/UV, and White/UV, and White/Red. What you see here is the Nichia 219c Red/UV copy.
Price and Coupon
All versions of the A28 go for $58.95. They can be bought at the official RovyVon site! Also available for a little less – $56.95 on amazon (referral link).
I already know I like this series of lights – I reviewed the A23 here, which is a very similar light. I liked the A23 enough to buy my own brass version – the A29. So the A28 is one I’m already probably going to like, and after the review work, I like it as expected. I wish the low was lower though. That’s my biggest complaint.
The Big Table
|Emitter:||Nichia 219c (90+CRI)|
|Price in USD at publication time:||$56.95 on amazon|
|Turbo Runtime||High Runtime|
|Quiescent Current (A):||?|
|Power off Charge Port with no Cell?|
|Claimed Lumens (lm)||700|
|Measured Lumens (at 30s)||270 (38.6% of claim)*^|
|Claimed Throw (m)||109|
|Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s)||179lux @ 4.214m = 3179cd|
|Throw (Calculated) (m)||112.8 (103.5% of claim)*|
|All my RovyVon reviews!|
- 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).
^ That’s after the stepdown.
- RovyVon A28 Flashlight
- Charge cable (USB to micro-USB)
- Spare o-ring (clear)
- Big split ring
- Manual, etc
Package and Manual
Typical RovyVon package and manual.
Build Quality and Disassembly
The build quality is on par with other RovyVon lights. The body is plastic, and you might have some feelings about plastic flashlight bodies (ie they’re often cheap feeling). This doesn’t feel like the metal bodies (A23/A29) but it’s still quite nice anyway.
The clear body offers some nice insight into the light, without ever disassembling it.
Te bezel (in fact the whole head) is metal. Probably stainless, but it has a very titanium looking finish.
Also noteworthy is that the body – possibly inside the body is Glow In The Dark. When you run the UV for a while, the GITD really gets activated.
The threads are body-material too. That is, the threads are plastic. No issue there. The head and body mate just fine.
I didn’t disassemble this light any further than you see below. I’ve done it before, and the internals are the same. The battery is “user replaceable” but it’s a proprietary battery. The entire guts of the body come out for a battery swap, too. More on the guts can be seen here if you’re interested.
Size and Comps
Length: 76mm; Diameter: 21.5mm; Weight: 46.3g
The A28 and A29 are the same aside from the tritium slots on the metal body. I still have never installed a single tritium in any light, ever. Should I do this??
Retention and Carry
The main means to carry the A28 is the pocket clip. It’s attached with two Philips screws, which sit flush on the clip.
I really like this clip. It’s easy to use (big mouth), very smooth, and also very deep carry.
Also an option for carry is the lanyard, which is included. It could attach on the tailcap loop or the pocket clip, since the pocket clip is securely attached (not friction fit).
The included paracord could be attached in much the same way as the lanyard.
Power and Runtime
As stated, the battery is an internal lipo. It’s technically built in, but the J-type connector can be seen through the body. However if you replace the battery with one from RovyVon, you’ll be replacing the entire guts of the body.
Here’s a couple of runtimes on the highest main modes. As you can see, the stepdown sort of kills the output measurement.
Hard to say if there’s LVP but the stepdowns mean you’ll definitely notice when the battery is low. That said, I’m fairly sure lipos are more resilient (or at least safer) when discharge is low.
High looks about the same, and steps down in the same way. The stepdown happens later here, so High actually ends up with a higher output rating at 30s, than Turbo.
Also, a runtime for Red. Output is quite stable once it trickles down, and also 22 lumens of red is… pretty bright.
I didn’t runtime UV. I’m not sure how sensitive my meter is to UV, but I can say that the UV emitter on High (there are two UV modes) must be quite inefficient (and/or powerful) because the body heats up a bit with UV on high. Also for whatever concerns there are about UV not penetrating the body – the UV goes through just fine. I can’t speak as to what percentage if any is lost in the passage through the body, but even on Low, the UV is useful.
Of course there’s also built in charging, via micro-USB on the tail. There’s a press-in cover, which fits securely. Every time I tried to open this I picked at the wrong end – so just be sure which side to try to snag. (The tab is very clear to my eye.)
Charging is quite high, at almost 2C. Lipos can handle that of course. The charge profile isn’t all that flat during CC, but it is consistent over different runs.
Modes and Currents
|Mode||Mode Claimed Output (lm)||Claimed Runtime||Measured Lumens||Tailcap Amps|
^ After significant stepdown.
Pulse Width Modulation
There’s some PWM around the modes, but it’s very fast and not really noticeable.
For reference, here’s a baseline shot, with all the room lights off and almost nothing hitting the sensor. And here’s the worst PWM light I have ever owned. Also one of the very first lights I ordered directly from China!
User Interface and Operation
The button is a side switch, just below the head. It’s a metal-cover e-switch. The metal button has a metal surround, which both gives a place to find with your finger, and helps prevent accidental presses.
Here you can see the black o-ring under the bezel of the switch.
Here’s a UI table!
|Off||Double Click||On (Memorized Mode**)|
|On||Click||Mode advance (excluding moonlight)|
|Off||Click 3x||Steady Red|
|Red||Click||Red advance (Steady, Flashing, Strobe)|
|UV||Click||Iterate UV output (Low/High)|
- Moonlight seems to be momentary only – there isn’t a way to get to it in the main group as far as I can see
** The mode is memorized after being on for >3m
LED and Beam
My emitter of choice is the Nichia 219c, which is High CRI (90+). The other option is a Cree XP-L. The emitter is under a TIR optic, which I think has seen some changes since the A23 review – see the beamshots of the two for comparison purposes. A23 beamshot link.
Also in this particular copy are red and UV, which can be seen below.
These beamshots are always with the following settings: f8, ISO100, 0.3s shutter, and manual 5000K exposure.
Tint vs BLF-348 (Killzone 219b version)
I keep the test flashlight on the left, and the BLF-348 reference flashlight on the right.
I compare everything to the Killzone 219b BLF-348 because it’s inexpensive and has the best tint!
What I like
- I still love this format.
- UV is useful
- Two modes of UV is neat too (for very UV sensitive people like myself)
- High CRI option
What I don’t like
- Heat based stepdown makes output claim a bit meaningless
- Wish Moonlight was available in the main group. Even if it was in the cycle.
- This light was provided by RovyVon for review. I was not paid to write this review.
- This content originally appeared at zeroair.org. Please visit there for the best experience!
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