Amutorch SD5 Thrower Flashlight Review
Amutorch has released the SD5 thrower flashlight, which excels at throwing while maintaining a low cost. It’s fairly utilitarian otherwise.
Official Specs and Features of the Amutorch SD5 Thrower Flashlight
Here’s a link to the NealsGadgets product page for the Amutorch SD5 thrower flashlight. This light doesn’t seem to be on the official Amutorch site yet.
Amutorch SD5 Thrower Flashlight Versions
There seems to be just one version.
The Amutorch SD5 thrower flashlight is selling now at Neals for $39.95. Links to Neals are affiliate links.
This is a solid thrower. Surprising throw, really. Output on the higher modes is great, and they all have great throw. The downside is that all the modes are fairly high.
The Big Table
|Amutorch SD5 Thrower Flashlight|
|Emitter:||Luminus SST-40 (6500K)|
|Price in USD at publication time:||$39.95|
|Turbo Runtime Graph||High Runtime Graph|
|Claimed Lumens (lm)||1800|
|Measured Lumens (at 30s)||1713 (95.2% of claim)^|
|Candela per Lumen||89.1|
|Claimed Throw (m)||748|
|Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s)||5200lux @ 5.438m = 153774cd|
|Throw (Calculated) (m)||784.3 (104.9% of claim)^|
|All my Amutorch reviews!|
^ Measurement disclaimer: Testing flashlights is my hobby. I use hobbyist-level equipment for testing, including some I made myself. Try not to get buried in the details of manufacturer specifications versus measurements recorded here; A certain amount of difference (say, 10 or 15%) is perfectly reasonable.
- Amutorch SD5 Thrower Flashlight
Package and Manual
Very simple (almost too small) box and no manual.
Build Quality and Disassembly
While the Amutorch SD5 flashlight is a nice thrower, it’s really fairly simple. Utilitarian, as I said above.
Here’s the top-down view.
This tailcap has a bit of spiraling and might be good for grip. You can see later why that might not be so relevant.
On the head are quite a few, and deep cooling fins.
Here’s the important bit of grip area – just under the cooling fins.
The reason for this is that the tailcap doesn’t come off at all. In fact, the whole cell tube seems to be one piece.
These threads on the cell tube are nice and thick anodized threads.
Here’s the evidence that the cell tube includes the (one piece) tailcap – no seam.
With the body off, you can see nice thick springs on both head and tail.
And observe the thickness of the cell tube at the head-attachment point. The whole body isn’t this thick though.
The bezel unscrews easily, and the parts inside come easily too.
There’s minimal printing on the Amutorch SD5 thrower flashlight. It’s limited to the owl logo, brand and model name.
Size and Comps
Size: 145mm x 64mm x 26mm (Length x Head Diameter x Body Diameter)
If the flashlight will headstand, I’ll show it here (usually the third photo). If the flashlight will tailstand, I’ll show that here, too (usually the fourth photo).
Here’s the test light with the venerable Convoy S2+. Mine’s a custom “baked” edition Nichia 219b triple. 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 really nothing included for carrying the SD5. There are lanyard holes in the tailcap, but no lanyard included.
There is no pouch, belt clip, etc. Only the lanyard holes in the tailcap.
Power and Runtime
A single lithium-ion cell runs the Amutorch SD5 thrower flashlight. The cell tube is sized for a 21700, but 20700 and 18650 work fine too.
Since there are springs on the head and tail, any type of cell that fits should work fine.
Here are runtimes on the highest 3 modes. There’s a pretty steep stepdown on all three modes.
When the cell voltage is low, the light switches off.
Testing on bench power shows the light switches off at 2.7V.
Modes and Currents
|Mode||Mode Claimed Output (lm)||Claimed Runtime||Measured Lumens||Tailcap Amps|
Pulse Width Modulation
Each of the lowest three modes has PWM, but it’s fast enough to be unnoticeable.
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, which is 50 microseconds (50us). 10ms. 5ms. 2ms. 1ms. 0.5ms. 0.2ms. 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
The Amutorch SD5 thrower flashlight is operated by a single mechanical switch. This is a tailswitch and happens to be a reverse clicky. Reverse clicky (as opposed to a forward clicky) means that while the light is on, modes may still be changed.
I mentioned above that the cell tube is one piece and that’s true. But you can see in the tailcap that there looks to be a retaining ring on the outside. That’s a bit unusual, and should provide switch access, for maintenance.
This switch is quite firm but has a medium depth action.
Here’s a UI table!
|Off||Click||On (Mode Memory)|
|On||Tap||Mode advance (LMHT)|
Like I said above, I don’t have a manual, so I’m only describing the UI as I have discovered it. There could be something hidden away, possibly. I will say that the switch seemed to miss occasionally for me – I’d be expecting a mode advance but I got an “off then back on to same mode” (which isn’t a feature of any UI) action. This isn’t necessarily that big a deal, but with a beam so tight and throwy, sometimes it’s honestly hard to tell which of the three highest modes you’re in… I also found that the double-tap timing was much too close to the “mode advance” timing, and got strobe quite a bit more than I intended.
LED and Beam
In the Amutorch SD5 thrower flashlight is this Luminus SST-40. The CCT is stated at 6500K, but according to my CCT/CRI tests (below), this light seems to be more like a “5000K” emitter version.
The reflector is very smooth, very wide, and deep. Perfect for a thrower.
LED Color Report (CRI and CCT)
These beamshots are always with the following settings: f8, ISO100, 0.3s shutter, and manual 5000K exposure. (There are some aberrations in the beam, but that’s in my ceiling and not the beam – fixed them best I could.)
Tint vs BLF-348 (KillzoneFlashlights.com 219b version) (affiliate link)
I keep the test flashlight on the left, and the BLF-348 reference flashlight on the right.
I compare everything to the KillzoneFlashlights.com 219b BLF-348 because it’s inexpensive and has the best tint!
What I like
- Very good throw
- Low cost
- Not encumbered by extra features (like charging)
- 2.25 candela per lumen per dollar seems like a pretty good deal…
- Dual springs make it work on many cells
What I don’t like
- Switch is only around 96% reliable
- Cool white
- There is no manual (though maybe/probably I got an early package and whatever you order will ship in a more “production” package – you’ll probably get a manual)
- A lanyard would have rounded out the package nicely
- This light was provided by NealsGadgets.com for review. I was not paid to write this review.
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