Sofirn SP10 V3 Flashlight Review

Sofirn SP10 V3 Flashlight Review

The Sofirn SP10 V3 is a dual-fuel (14500/AA) flashlight with a simple user interface and great emitter choice too! An all-around great one!


Official Specs and Features

Here’s a link to the Sofirn SP10 V3 flashlight product page.

Versions

Of the Sofirn SP10 V3 flashlight there is just one version.  There are two purchase options though – kit or no kit.  What you see here is the kit option, and that’s what I’d recommend.  It includes a 14500 cell and a charger for just $2 extra.  There are other versions of the SP10 of course, as this is version 3.

Price

The no-kit is $20.99.  A kit with a cell and single-bay charger adds only $2, for a total of $22.99.  Buy the kit!


Short Review

Just like I loved the Sofirn SC21, I love the Sofirn SP10 V3, too.  What a great little flashlight.  I would argue that the SP10 V3 is probably better than the SC21 though because it can run both lithium-ion and primary AA-sized cells too!

Long Review

The Big Table

Sofirn SP10 V3 Flashlight (Set)
Emitter: Samsung LH351d (90 CRI)
Price in USD at publication time: $20.99
Cell: 1×14500
Turbo Runtime Graph High Runtime Graph
LVP? With lithium-ion: Warning (double blink) around 3V
With 1.5V cell: Does not seem to have LVP
Switch Type: E-Switch
Quiescent Current (mA): 0.12
On-Board Charging? Separate charger (micro-USB)
Charge Port Type: Separate charger uses micro-USB
Charge Graph
Power off Charge Port
Claimed Lumens (lm) 1000
Measured Lumens (at 30s) 910 (91% of claim)^
Candela per Lumen 5.5
Claimed Throw (m) 121
Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s) 307lux @ 4.13m = 5236cd
Throw (Calculated) (m) 144.7 (119.6% of claim)^
Item provided for review by: Sofirn
All my Sofirn reviews!
Sofirn SP10-V3 (Set)
Emitter: Samsung LH351d (90 CRI)
Price in USD at publication time: $20.99
Cell: 1xAA
Turbo Runtime Graph
LVP?
Switch Type: E-Switch
Quiescent Current (mA): 0.05
On-Board Charging? Yes
Charge Port Type:
Power off Charge Port
Claimed Lumens (lm) 300
Measured Lumens (at 30s) 280 (93.3% of claim)^
Candela per Lumen 5.7
Claimed Throw (m) 61
Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s) 103lux @ 3.779m = 1471cd
Throw (Calculated) (m) 76.7 (125.7% of claim)^
Item provided for review by: Sofirn
All my Sofirn 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

  • Sofirn SP10 V3 Flashlight
  • Sofirn 900mAh 14500 lithium-ion cell
  • Single-bay charger (lithium-ion only)
  • Metal ring attachment with split-ring
  • Charger cable (USB to micro-USB)
  • Lanyard
  • Spare o-rings (2)
  • Manual etc

Package and Manual

Build Quality and Disassembly

The build quality is good.  No issues to speak of, particularly given that this is a $23 flashlight!

The threads are square-cut, not too long, and have plenty of lube.  Note that Sofirn has updated where the cell orientation label goes – it’s on the tailcap here, which is a smarter place (than the cell tube, which has happened before.)

The tail has a nice beefy spring.

The head end has similar threads but the cell tube is not reversible.

The head end gets only a button and no spring.

Size and Comps

Dimension: 88 mm (length) × 20.5mm (head diameter)
Weight: 40 ± 1 grams (without battery)

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.

I mentioned the SC21 above – here’s a size comparison.  I love the SC21, and I even love 16340 cell flashlights.  But the SP10 V3 has dual-chemistry support, which makes it a winner!

Retention and Carry

The primary means for carrying the SP10 V3 is the two-way pocket clip.  This is a very short two-way clip.  It fits only on the tail end of the light; there is no spot on the head end to connect the clip (and the cell tube isn’t reversible).

This clip setup makes it a little less than ideal for use on the brim of a cap, but it could still probably work.

Friction holds the clip in place very well.

Next up is the lanyard, which attaches on the tailcap.

Technically you could attach the lanyard by this metal split-ring type attachment piece.

The lanyard is fine but nothing special.

Power and Runtime

Sofirn includes (with the kit) a 900mAh 14500 cell.  This is why I recommend the kit!  For $2 you get a good quality cell.

This is a standard button-top cell.

The cell goes into the SP10 V3 in the usual way:  the positive terminal (button) goes toward the head.

As stated above, and one of my favorite reasons to love this light, is that the SP10 V3 runs on AA cells too!  AA: primary or NiMH or 1.5V otherwise.  They work.

Here are a few runtime tests.

Charging

While the SP10 V3 doesn’t include charging, the kit does include a single-bay charger.  It’s fine but nothing special.  Don’t worry about the charger though – the kit is worth purchasing just for the cell!

The back indicates it’ll only charge lithium-ion cells.

The charger uses micro-USB for power.

Sofirn includes a USB to micro-USB cable.

Here are a couple of charge cycles of the included charger and 14500 cell.

Modes and Currents

14500 (4.2V)

Mode Mode Claimed Output (lm) Claimed Runtime Measured Lumens Tailcap Amps @4.2V
Turbo 1000 1h 910 4.15
High 350 1.1h 334 1.31
Medium 100 3.5h 99 0.40
Low 10 26h 12.4 0.03
Moon 1 90h 1.7 6.93mA

AA (1.5V):

Mode Mode Claimed Output (lm) Claimed Runtime Measured Lumens Tailcap Amps @1.5V
Turbo 300 0.7h 280 5.00
High 120 1.5h 74 0.91
Medium 50 8.8h 37 0.44
Low 10 9.7h 7.2 0.08
Moon 1 29h 0.8 18.80mA

Pulse Width Modulation

There’s PWM on every level of every mode.  It’s fast enough though to not be a concern.

14500:

AA:

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

A single switch controls the Sofirn SP10 V3 flashlight.  It’s a very nice “metal cover” e-switch on the side of the head and has no indicating functions.  The cover has a very light dome which makes it very pleasant to interact with.

The action is very low.

Here’s a UI table!

State Action Result
Off Click On (Mode Memory)
Off Hold Moon
On Click Off
Any Double click Turbo
Turbo (Or strobe) Click Previous mode
Any Triple click Strobe
Strobe Hold Strobe advance (Strobe, SOS, Beacon)
On Hold Mode advance (cycle is LMH only)
Off Click 4x Lockout (double blink to indicate)
Lockout Click 4x Unlock (Low)
Lockout Click Double blink to indicate lockout

LED and Beam

Sofirn smartly put a Samsung LH351d emitter in this little light.

It uses a lightly orange peel reflector, just like the SC21.

The bezel is flat, so light doesn’t escape when headstanding.

LED Color Report (CRI and CCT)

CRI/CCT look great – low 90s for CRI, which puts this in the “High CRI” category.  The CCT of 5000 Kelvin isn’t bad either.

14500:

AA:

Beamshots

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

14500:

AA:

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.

14500:

AA:

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

Conclusion

What I like

  • Dual fuel support (lithium-ion and 1.5V cells too)
  • Easy user interface
  • High CRI
  • Good beam profile
  • Very low cost

What I don’t like

  • I would probably like something warmer than 5000K but it’s good enough
  • Pocket clip not reversible

Notes

  • 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.com!
  • Use my amazon.com referral link if you’re willing to help support making more reviews like this one!
  • Please support me on Patreon!  Feeding flashlights is expensive!  And funding Fun Fund Friday even more so.  I deeply appreciate your support!
Liked it? Take a second to support zeroair on Patreon!

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: