YLP Unicorn 1.0 Flashlight Review

I’ve seen these YLP lights floating around a bunch lately and they seem interesting enough that I wanted my own shot at them.  YLP agreed to send a couple.  Today is the Unicorn 1.0, and later I’ll have the 180.  Both very cool neat lights!


Official Specs and Features

Here’s a link to the official product page.

Versions

I believe there’s just one version.

Price

These sell for around $40, but look to be out of stock at the moment.


Short Review

I like it.  I find it to be very simple, easy to handle, and overall the functionality I’d want out of it is there.  The high CRI is a great option and appreciated in a stock version light.  Even some alternate UI’s are available, which is a nice touch.

Long Review

The Big Table

YLP Unicorn 1.0
Emitter: Samsung LH351D ((NW, 4200K, >90CRI))
Price in USD at publication time: $40.00
Cell: 1×18650
Turbo Runtime High Runtime
LVP? Yes, with Switch warning
Switch Type: E-switch
Quiescent Current (A): ?
On-Board Charging? No
Claimed Lumens (lm) 850
Measured Lumens (at 30s) 803 (94.5% of claim)*
Candela per Lumen 7.6
Claimed Throw (m) 125
Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s) 346lux @ 4.201m = 6106cd
Throw (Calculated) (m) 156.3 (125% of claim)*
All my YLP 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).

What’s Included

  • Yarkiy Luch (YLP) Unicorn 1.0 Flashlight
  • Spare o-rings (2)
  • Lanyard
  • Manual

Package and Manual

Build Quality and Disassembly

This is a very well constructed light, with some things different than what we sometimes see.

Most notably, the knurling is quite aggressive, and will provide an extremely sure grip.

Some other nice appointments include the button, which we’ll cover more later.

The tailcap has some good branding, with a Unicorn 1.0 logo.

The fins on the head are very reminiscent of Zebralight cooling fins.  They aren’t over the top, but good for an EDC light.

Again, the knurling.  There are some inset body designs, too.  (It’s a “Y” , most probably for the Y in YLP lights.)

The tailcap has knurling as well, which is appropriate since the tailcap is what’s removed for cell swaps.

These threads might be the biggest I’ve ever seen on a light.  Very thick, anodized, and smooth.  Also you can se some attention to detail here – that end threads (right most, below) is angled unlike the other threads, to allow for a very smooth entry into threading.  All the knurling mean that it’s easy to remove the tailcap with one hand (2.5 full twists).

The tailcap has a magnet, which I think could be removed with the removal of the spring.  The magnet is quite strong.

Inside the cell tube is a sticker indicating cell orientation – it’s the ‘standard’ orientation.

Size and Comps

Officially: LENGHT: 102MM, HIGHT: 28MM, DIAM.: 25MM and 67g.

It’s sort of long for this class light, but still nowhere near as long as the Convoy S2+.

Compared to another very similar light, though, it does seem a bit big.  This is the Zebralight SC64c (the BobMcBob version.)

Retention and Carry

The primary way to carry this light will be the pocket clip.  This is a simple friction fit clip, but it’s been very well considered.  Namely, the metal isn’t just left as stamped (or water cut or whatever).  The edges have been …. “softened” ?  How to say it exactly.  They aren’t sharp.  Not really “rounded” but they’re very comfortable.  This is something often not seen in even higher end lights!

The clip is very secure.  Though there are no holes in it, it’d be a good location for a lanyard.  I think it’s secure enough.

The included lanyard is intended to attach through a hole in the tailcap.

And the magnet in the tailcap is plenty strong to hold this light in any orientation.

The pocket clip is reversible, and so the light can be used as a hatlight if desired.

Power and Runtime

The Unicorn 1.0 is powered by a single 18650 cell.  The cell goes into the light in the normal orientation, which is positive terminal toward the head.

Here are a couple of runtimes.  The light does have LVP, but I’ve stopped these tests before that kicked in.  (YLP calls this “Maximum” not “Turbo.”)

High is  very well regulated, over the course of around an hour and a half.

On bench power testing, the switched turned from green to green/red at 3.6V.  Then to solid red at 3.2V.  And at 2.5V, the light shut off completely (and electrically).

Modes and Currents

Mode Mode Claimed Output (lm) Claimed Runtime Measured Lumens Tailcap Amps
Maximum 850 1.5h 803 2.50
High 450 2.5h 412 1.09
Medium 170 7.5h 150 0.39
Low 40 33h 38 0.10
Minimum 3 10d 2 0.01

PWM

The sawtooth seen below is not PWM.  Also it’s not visible by my eye (and therefore unlikely to be visible to yours, too.)

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

There’s a single indicating e-switch on the Unicorn 1.0.  It’s clear, and can indicate red and green.  It’s quite clicky, too.

There are four (4) user interfaces available.  The Basic UI is what ships enabled.  Switching from Basic to Advanced requires 14 clicks.  Successful switch is indicated with a green switch indication.  Switching between 3 Advanced UI’s requires 5 clicks and a hold.  Switching from Advanced to Basic requires 12 clicks.

Here’s a UI table fo the Basic UI!

State Action Result
Off Click On (Mode memory)
On Hold “Sine wave” mode changes (lowest to highest back to lowest, repeating)
Off Double click Maximum*
Off Hold Minimum*
On Double Click Maximum (and next click will be previous mode)
Off Click 14x Advanced UI 1 (ramping, while maintaining Min/Max access)
Advanced UI 1 Click 5x + Hold Advanced UI 2 (also ramping, but more, including some strobe options, battery check, tactical mode (completely momentary operation))
Advanced UI 2 Click 5x + Hold Advanced UI 3 (similar to the Basic UI, but with some memory change options, some switch indicator change options and other things)
Any Advanced UI Click 12x Returns to Basic UI

* Activations like this are not stored in memory

Here is the manual text on the Advanced UI options.

LED and Beam

The emitter in the Unicorn 1.0 is a Samsung LH351d, in 4000K and High CRI (>90).  This emitter is under a TIR, and provides one of my favorite beam patterns – fairly tight and even all the way across hotspot.

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

Tint vs BLF-348 (Killzone 219b version)

Test light is on the left.

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

Conclusion

What I like

  • Use of high CRI emitter
  • Use of Samsung LH351d
  • Relatively low cost
  • Many UI options
  • Reasonable claims made on the light, and the specs are met

What I don’t like

  • Just a little big, comparatively
  • Switch could be bigger, or less clicky (but easier to press).  Still very functional though.

Notes

  • This light was provided by YLP for review. I was not paid to write this review.
  • This content originally appeared at zeroair.org.  Please visit there for the best experience!
  • For flashlight related patches, stickers, and gear, head over to PhotonPhreaks, another site where I write!
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Author: zeroair

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