Convoy C8+ Orange Flashlight Review

Convoy C8+ Orange Flashlight Review

You knew I was going to buy the Convoy C8+ Orange flashlight. I did, and it’s better than I guessed! Flat white thrower, orange body! Read on!


Official Specs and Features

Here’s a link to the Convoy C8+ Orange Flashlight product page.

Versions

Honestly, it’s a Convoy C8+ – there are probably two thousand possible configurations from Simon (who is Convoy).  This particular version is notably an Osram Flat White (KW CULPM1.TG) emitter (but many other emitter options exist outside of this product listing).  And I went with the orange body, but other colors are available:  Black, Brown, Green, and Silver.  Some other listings include Purple, and Red, too.

Price

I paid exactly $28.74 (total) for this flashlight.  This light was purchased (by me) at the official Convoy Flashlight Store.


Short Review of the Convoy C8+ Orange Flashlight

First of all, the orange on this light is fantastic.  I mean it’s just great.  I can’t think of better orange anodization.  Olight was setting the standard here, but Convoy is clearly using the Olight recipe.  I have no doubt that the other color options are just as good, too.

Long Review

The Big Table

Convoy C8+ Orange Flashlight
Emitter: KW CULPM1.TG (Flat White)
Price in USD at publication time: $26.86
Cell: 1×18650
100% Runtime Graph “Medium” Runtime Graph
LVP? Yes
Switch Type: Mechanical
On-Board Charging? No
Claimed Lumens (lm)
Measured Lumens (at 30s) 1265
Candela per Lumen 158.3
Claimed Throw (m) 917.9
Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s) 5990lux @ 5.909m = 209149cd
Throw (Calculated) (m) 914.7 (99.7% of claim)^
All my Convoy 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

what's included

  • Convoy C8+ Orange Flashlight
  • Lanyard (attached)

Package and Manual

box

The box gets a big mangled because it’s very thin, but my light arrived flawless.  Also, there is no manual.

Build Quality and Disassembly

feature photo

Again, the orange here is just spectacular.  I have said it over and over but I find orange items to be extremely hard to white balance, so if this or that photo don’t match, or if this or that photo look oversaturated – please forgive me.  The light is “the right” orange, whether it’s described adequately in the photos or not.

The Convoy C8+ flashlight should be a known entity to you – just like the Convoy S2+ (which I already said you should own), you should own at least one of these lights.  It starts out as a great light, and it’s easy to modify if you want to.

With the introduction of all these color bodies, it’s even a great mix and match option for your favorite “panda” too!

This particular model is labeled as having “no temperature control” – these big cooling fins on the head will help with the heat management.

cooling fins

The body has ample knurling for great grip.  Really the descriptions I give here are pretty much just like the C8+ I’ve already reviewed.

knurling bezel

The C8+ differs from C8 in a few ways, including the tailcap seen below.  There’s a bit more grip, and it feels beefier than my other C8.  Unfortunately no comparison photos – the C8 makes a fantastic giveaway light – it’s inexpensive and trustworthy.  So I don’t still have any of my many others!

The tailcap threads are anodized, square-cut, and very smooth.

tailcap removed

Despite being different on each end here, the cell tube is reversible.  Typically the unanodized end will go on the head side of the light.

head removed

The tailcap is held together by a retaining ring, and there’s a beefy spring in there.  The head end also has a spring.  This means any type 18650 will work fine. The head components are held in place by a retaining ring, too.  All the parts are extremely accessible!

dual springs

The bezel unscrews easily, leaving access to the mcpcb, which is held in place with two screws.  The little plastic on the metal reflector is the centering ring that goes around the emitter.

bezel removed bare emitter reflector is loose

Size and Comps

Body Diameter: 25.5mm
Head Diameter: 44.5mm
Length: 141mm

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).

in hand

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.

beside torchlab boss 35

The parts are completely interchangeable, of course.  You could really build a special model if you had all the colors!  Rasta!

convoy c8+ black and orange panda

Retention and Carry

For the C8+ there is only a lanyard to aid in carry.  The lanyard ships attached.

This lanyard attaches on the tailcap, through these two holes on either side.

lanyard holes lanyard installed lanyard installed properly

That’s it.  No pocket clip, no pouch, nothing else.

Power and Runtime

The C8+ is powered by a single lithium-ion cell – this light fits an 18650.

with 18650

The cell is installed in the usual orientation – positive terminal toward the head.

with 18650 installed

Due to long (enough) springs on head and tail, the Convoy C8+ Orange flashlight will work with most (or all) 18650 cells.  Unprotected flat tops, long protected button tops.  They should all work fine.

Below are runtimes on two modes.  The output isn’t regulated and drifts downward as the cell voltage drops.  There’s a stepdown after “a while” and the output drifts again.

runtime graph

The above runtime is the “100%” mode.  In programming, 100% is fairly easy to ascertain.  The other easy-to-mark mode is 1% – anything other than those two is a bit of guesswork.  I’ve selected a bit of a random “medium” mode (which is approximately right in the middle of the thirty-six options).  I was hoping to find something that was fairly regulated, and I seem to have done so.  This is around 350 lumens for over 2 hours – I’ll take that.  Also with the cd to lumen ratio, that’s quite a bit of throw for 2 hours!!

runtime graph

All in all, I’m extremely pleased with the output here.  Despite there being “no temperature regulation,” the light never got too hot.  I do blow a fan on the lights during a runtime, but I still feel like this is fairly reasonable.  I tested the light up to 6A on 100%, so if you have a cell that will allow it (and the 30Q I used should have), then you can reasonably expect some heat.

Modes and Currents

I’m only making this table so you can see the amps used by each output level.

Mode Mode Claimed Output (lm) Claimed Runtime Measured Lumens Tailcap Amps
100% 1265 6.08
5.74
5.42
5.10
4.83
4.50
4.15
3.90
3.58
3.29
3.01
2.69
2.42
2.13
1.83
1.53
1.18
1.13
1.07
1.01
0.96
0.93
0.84
0.78
0.73
0.67
0.61
0.55
0.49
0.43
0.37
0.31
0.25
0.19
0.12
1% 0.06

Pulse Width Modulation

No PWM on any of the modes.  This is not every single output, but here is a sample:

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 switch on the Convoy C8+ Orange flashlight.  It’s a tail mechanical reverse clicky.

reverse clicky

I really like this switch, too.  It seems bigger than many other mechanical switches and is very easy to use.  You’ll really need to click it a bunch, too, if you plan to change the modes often.

switch profile

This user interface is a new one from Convoy.  It’s described as “ramping” but I don’t find that to be very accurate at all…  Essentially there are just three modes, and two of those three modes can be occupied by any of the “ramping” outputs you wish.  The third is a more special category mode, occupied by any of 5 specific outputs.

Here’s a UI table!

State Action Result
Off Click Mode 1
Configurable to 1 of approximately 36 “Ramping” output levels
On Double Tap Mode 2
Configurable to 1 of approximately 36 “Ramping” output levels
On Triple Tap Mode 3

Configurable to 1 of 6 specific modes:
1%, 100%, Strobe (100%), Beacon (100%), Slow Flash, SOS (40%)

On Click Off
Mode 1 or 2 Tap 5x Enters “Ramping” output selection for that mode.  Ramps from low (1%) to High (100%).  Flash at 100% with a pause to confirm 100% (helps with programming)
Mode 3 Tap 5x Enters Mode 3 Configuration.  Light blinks through once 1x for each option, then lands on 1% (and is programmed to SOS if no user input)
Configuration (any Mode) Tap after desired output Mode is programmed

As you can see, this isn’t really “ramping” as we think of ramping.  Yes, modes are broadly available on the fly, but not without literally reprogramming the light.  Cycling the modes isn’t all that quick, and it can be difficult to hit exactly what you want without having to go back through the cycle.

That said, if you really don’t care about ramping, and are ok with selecting your 3 modes and being happy with them, then I think this is great.  It allows complete removal of strobes (with technical access to them).  It allows specific programming of 1% and 100%, both of which I find necessary.  And the output levels in the middle (mode 2 for me) can really be set to whatever you want.

LED and Beam

Of course second to my desire for this fantastic orange body, I wanted a C8+ thrower.  The Flat White emitter really answers that call.  This is the Osram KW CULPM1.TG, and had incredible throw.

emitter

Also this tiny emitter can handle an astonishing amount of current, so not only does it throw very well, it also makes a very high level of output!

emitter

The reflector that’s included is a smooth deep reflector.

reflector reflector

As with other C8+ flashlights, the bezel is shaped, and light can escape when headstanding.

bezel uncalibrated beamshot

These beamshots are always with the following settings:  f8, ISO100, 0.3s shutter, and manual 5000K exposure.  I didn’t capture all the output options, but here’s a sample (and yes, the extremes are 1% and 100%).  You can see that between each level there’s really not all that much difference.  I believe there are 36 discrete steady outputs.  More to the point about the beam is that the beam is very much to a point: it’s very throwy!

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.  Same as above – this isn’t all the modes, but does include 1% and 100%.

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

Conclusion

What I like

  • Very exceptional throw
  • Low cost
  • This anodizing (not just the orange, but likely all the other colors too) is very good
  • The new user interface for Convoy is perfectly acceptable

What I don’t like

  • I like manuals, but there is no manual included

Notes

  • This light was provided by me 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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