Convoy L6 GT-FC40 Flashlight Review
Convoy has released a “new L6” which uses the interesting GT-FC40 emitter, and comes in a few CCT options – mine is the “4000K-4500K” option. Look no further for some data!
Official Specs and Features
Convoy L6 GT-FC40 Flashlight Versions
Though this version of the L6 no longer seems to be called the “New” LC – there are other and older versions. I’ve reviewed two of those, which you can see here in a clear finish and a review from way back when of the XHP70 version. I also have reviewed a New L6 version of the Cree XHP70.
However, this model L6 seems to be specifically named “L6 GT-FC40” (which I appreciate.) This L6 looks to be available in black and silver (!!!), and with many emitter CCT’s, as follows:
4000-4500K (seen here)
There also appears to be a reflector option – smooth and orange peel. My sample is the smooth variety.
It looks like all options are the same price: $59.95. Buy the Convoy L6 GT-FC40 Flashlight here!
The L6 is still a fantastic light, after all these years (>5 years since the first L6 was reviewed on this site!). I love the GT-FC40 emitter, and 4000-4500K seems to be a sweet spot. I think Convoy has dipped the price a bit, and staying under $60 is a great choice.
The Big Table
|Convoy L6 GT-FC40 Flashlight|
|Price in USD at publication time:||$59.95|
|Turbo Runtime Graph||High Runtime Graph|
|Switch Type:||Mechanical tailswitch, Side e-switch|
|Claimed Lumens (lm)||3000|
|Measured Lumens (at 30s)||2697 (89.9% of claim)^|
|Candela per Lumen||48.1|
|Claimed Throw (m)||734|
|Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s)||3760lux @ 5.9m = 130886cd|
|Throw (Calculated) (m)||723.6 (98.6% 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).
- Convoy New L6 GT-FC40 Flashlight
- Tactical ring with lanyard holes
Package and Manual
There is no manual.
Build Quality and Disassembly
Typical, and very good, build quality here from Convoy. Everything is as it should be. I might even call the L6 one of their best-built flashlights, too….
Here’s a top-down view:
A few things going on with this tailcap. First, it’s beefy. Secondly, there’s a “tactical ring blank” here. You’ll see more later.
Threads are very smooth, square-cut, moderately lubed, and not too long.
Convoy does a spring bypass on the switch spring, as you can see below. The switch is also accessible by simply removing this retaining ring. Unlike the other New L6, the spring in the head is not bypassed.
The cell tube comes off the head and tail.
It’s not a reversible cell tube, though – the head end has unanodized threads. Also note the tactical ring, installed the wrong way just for show. Apparently I always install these backward by default.
There’s a blank you should remove before installing this tactical ring.
Size and Comps
Head diameter: 75mm
Outer diameter of battery tube: 35mm
Inner diameter of the battery tube: 27mm
Flashlight length: 255mm
Light weight: 550g
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.
One more point about shorty tubes…. And this pic is from the other New L6 review, but…
The shorty tube from the L2 will fit in the L6, as expected.
This actually works. One cell works in this light! It works only briefly, because the emitter is a 12V emitter, and so boosting from 3.7V (nominal) to 12 even at lower modes is a lot of power. But it does in fact work!
Retention and Carry
There’s really not much included for carry of the Convoy L6 GT-FC40 flashlight. The first I’ll mention is this lanyard hole, which is in the tailcap. It’s a double hole, so the light can still tailstand when a lanyard is in place.
Note that no lanyard is included. Both sides of the tailcap have these holes.
Next, and probably more useful, is the tactical ring. I can’t see any good reason to not use the tactical ring, so for my money I’d rather the light just ship this way and save 50 cents on the blank. The tactical ring also has lanyard holes.
Holding the light this way, in a tactical grip way, is cumbersome because of the overall size of the Convoy L6.
There is no belt clip or pouch or anything else for carry of the Convoy L6 GT-FC40 flashlight.
Power and Runtime
The Convoy L6 GT-FC40 flashlight requires around 8V at the driver to work. (I guess that’s technically referred to as “7.4V nominal.”) This means two of whatever lithium-ion cells you’re putting into the cell tube. It’s made for 26650 cells. These are Astrolux 5000mAh 26650 cells, and they work very well in this light.
The cells install in the usual way – positive (button in this case) toward the head. One thing very nice about these Astrolux cells is that there’s absolutely no slop. They fit very snugly and don’t rattle even a little.
Here are a couple of runtime graphs. Output on Turbo hits under the claim, but I can name two reasons this might be lower than spec: 1) My sample is 4000K-4500K, and almost always the spec is written for the coolest white option (in this case 5000-5500K). 2) The bezel shape prevents every single bit of output from entering my testing apparatus, so I’m missing some of those lumens.
Either way, the output is fairly remarkably spectacular. Over 2000 lumens for nearly an hour, and all with minimal temperature at hand. On this test of 100% output, I blipped the light back to turbo there around 120 minutes just to see what would happen. It stepped down quickly, but still reached around 2000 lumens briefly.
Unlike the output on the next lower level with the XHP70 L6, the output on the Convoy L6 GT-FC40 flashlight remains perfectly flat at around 1330 lumens for well over an hour.
Each test indicated that the light has low voltage protection, though the cells seemed to terminate at slightly different voltages. That’s a little unusual (since they are in series.)
Alright, I said above that the Convoy L6 GT-FC40 flashlight will work with the one-cell setup. That’s true – it will turn on! But it will not work for long. Certainly not the higher modes. It’s a math thing – this emitter needs 12V. Well, the driver has to take what it’s given and boost it to 12V. From 8.4V (two lithium-ion cells) that’s comparatively easier. But from just one cell, the driver needs to boost much more… it does that with current. So with two cells, any given mode will need X amps. That same mode with one cell would need 2X amps (at a minimum, that doesn’t count for boost losses). So the light will turn on, but what seems like is probably happening is that the light turns on long enough to do a voltage check from the cells, then sees that the voltage is too low, and shuts off (on all modes.)
Regardless of all that, I can tell you that the Convoy L6 GT-FC40 flashlight on a single cell setup is so flashlighty and perfect that I might keep it around because it looks so awesome.
Modes and Currents
|Mode||Mode Claimed Output (lm)||Claimed Runtime||Measured Lumens||Tailcap Amps (@8.4V)|
Pulse Width Modulation
There is no PWM for any of the modes. Yay!
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). 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 Convoy L6 GT-FC40 flashlight is a two-button light. The tail switch is for on/off (and momentary) and the side switch selects mode while on. Four regular modes can be selected with a fifth (strobe) available. It’s pretty simple and is very intuitive. Click the light on (tail button) and then select the mode with the side switch. While on, double-click the side switch to access strobe.
Here’s a UI table!
|Off||Click Tail Switch||On (Mode Memory)|
|On||Click Tail Switch||Off|
|Off||Click Side Switch||No Action|
|On||Click Side Switch||Mode advance (LMHT)|
|On||Double Click Side Switch||Strobe|
|Strobe||Click Side Switch||Previous mode|
|On||Hold Side Switch||No action|
LED and Beam
Obviously, the emitter is the reason you’re here reading this review. This emitter is the GT-FC40, an until-recently unknown emitter that dropped and has been hitting hard!
It has great output, great color rendering (though no CRI claim is made), and is just overall wonderful.
As you can see below, the bezel is fluted, and light escapes. I prefer this, but it does not work so great with runtime testing.
This bezel does in fact unscrew quite easily though. Good for emitter swaps, if that’s your thing!
There is ample cooling surface area because of these cooling fins.
I’ll say the opposite thing about this setup than I did with the XHP70 setup – a “crumpled” (Orange Peel) reflector might be the way to go on this light. The beam pattern getting broken up just a little bit will do wonders for near-use. At a distance, this won’t matter so much, though, and the smooth reflector will likely give you more throw.
LED Color Report (CRI and CCT)
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 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
- Uses the GT-FC40 emitter
- Great CCT options (the 4000K is great!, but there are even warmer options!)
- Standard Convoy build quality (and this one leans toward “a little better” too)
- Dual switch interface (why oh why can’t the L2 have this)
- Technically works with one cell (?)
What I don’t like
- Cost – $60 is not inexpensive, but still toward the outer edge of what we generally expect Convoy flashlights to cost.
- Tactical “blank” seems like an unnecessary extra
- No pouch
- No manual
- This light was provided by Convoy Store for review. I was not paid to write this review.
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