Brinyte E18 Pheme Flashlight Review

Brinyte E18 Pheme Flashlight Review

Brinyte introduced a new EDC flashlight, the E18 Pheme. This light uses a TIR optic and a Luminus SST-40 emitter. A 18650 is included, too!


Official Specs and Features

Here’s a link to the Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight product page.

Versions

I think there’s only one version.

Price

Brinyte’s website has the E18 Pheme flashlight listed at $69.95.


Short Review

The Brinyte E18 Pheme is a solid little flashlight. The size is pretty good, most notably in that it’s a very narrow light. I appreciate that the E18 uses USB-C charging, but charging seems a touch slow and C to C is not supported. The switch is great and the user interface is too.

Long Review

The Big Table

Brinyte E18 Pheme Flashlight
Emitter: Luminus SST-40
Price in USD at publication time: $69.95
Cell: 1×18650
Turbo Runtime Graph High Runtime Graph
LVP? Yes
Switch Type: E-Switch
Quiescent Current (mA):
On-Board Charging? Yes
Charge Port Type: USB-C
Charge Graph
Power off Charge Port with cell: lowest 3 modes
without cell: lowest 3 modes
without tailcap: lowest 3 modes
Claimed Lumens (lm) 1200
Measured Lumens (at 30s) 952 (79.3% of claim)^
Candela per Lumen 15.3
Claimed Throw (m) 220
Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s) 510lux @ 4.733m = 11425cd
Throw (Calculated) (m) 213.8 (97.2% of claim)^
Claimed CCT
Measured CCT Range (K) 5600-6200 Kelvin
Item provided for review by: Brinyte
All my Brinyte 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

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight what's included

  • Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight
  • Brinyte 3000mAh 18650
  • Charging cable (USB to USB-C)
  • Lanyard
  • Spare o-rings (2)
  • Manual

Package and Manual

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight box Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight manual Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight manual

 

Build Quality and Disassembly

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight

I mentioned above that one thing I like about the Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight is how narrow it is. Well, that’s true and great, but that comes at the cost of thinner walls. I think you can feel that in the body. When everything is screwed down, the light just feels solid. But removing the tailcap and swapping cells or whatever – you’re likely to notice the thickness.

However, that might never matter to you! The E18 has built-in charging, so you don’t necessarily ever have to even remove the tailcap (or “rarely” have to).

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight tailcap

If you do, you’ll note that the tailcap threads are very smooth. They’re square cut, anodized, and appropriately lubed.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight tailcap off showing threads

The tailcap has a big beefy spring, and this spring holds in a magnet, too.  More on the magnet later.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight tailcap spring and magnet

One nice thing about the Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight is that the bezel can be removed easily too!

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight bezel removed

Thus, if you wish to swap emitters, you should have good luck as the MCPCB is very accessible.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight bezel and optic removed Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight on without bezel

Size and Comps

23.6mm x 23mm x 115.5mm
Without battery: 66g.

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).

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight 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.

I find this size comparison unusually helpful.  This is essentially the size of an S2+, but slightly narrower (which is great) and slightly shorter (also great.) Notably this light adds charging, but is smaller!

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.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight beside the TorchLAB BOSS 35 (custom engraved)

Brinyte is a neat company and often includes things like this cap with review samples.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight with cap

Retention and Carry

Mainly, you’ll probably use the included and attached friction-fit pocket clip for carrying the E18 Pheme.  This is a two-way clip and has a grip bump on the backside.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight pocket clip

It’s a fine clip. I don’t care about the two-way-ness of it, but it works well as a normal clip.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight pocket clip

Also, the clip can fit on both ends of the light (which makes the two-way sort of superfluous, right?)

Clip hug!

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight pocket clip hug

There’s also a lanyard, and the primary place to attach it will be this spot on the tailcap.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight lanyard hole Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight lanyard installed

Fortunately it’s possible to tailstand with the lanyard installed.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight lanyard installed Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight lanyard installed

Remember I said I’d mention the magnet? Here we go.  The magnet is pretty useless. It’s possible to hang the light on something by the magnet but the light will fall if placed sideways. I suppose that’s fine, but I need a magnet that will suck the chrome off a bumper.

Power and Runtime

Brinyte includes the required cell for operating the E18 Pheme.  It’s a button top 18650. I failed to get my usual host of photos of this cell, but it’s a 3000mAh cell that’s standard in all ways.

The cell goes into the Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight in the normal way – positive end toward the head.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight included 18650 installed

Here are a few runtimes. The output seems to miss the target by a bit, but the throw is on point. I’ll call that acceptable. By the way – this light is very throwy!

The switch does indicate cell voltage while the light is being used, as follows:

Green: 100-30% power
Red: 30-10% power
Red flashing: <10% power

I didn’t really worry about that in practice; the light shuts off around 3V reliably.

runtime graph runtime graph runtime graph

Charging

USB-C charging is used on the Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight. The charging port is opposite to the switch, and there’s very little chance you’ll confuse the two when using the light blind.

An appropriate cable is included – USB to USB-C.

Here are a couple of charging cycles. Charging is acceptable, but a bit slow.  This 3000mAh cell could certainly comfortably handle more than 1A (even 1.5A should be long-term-safe.)

charging graph

The switch also indicates charging state: when charging, it indicates as follows:

Green: Charged
Red: Charging

C to C charging does not work.

Modes and Currents

Mode Mode Claimed Output (lm) Claimed Runtime Measured Lumens Tailcap Amps
Turbo 1200-550 2m-110m 952 4.03
High 450 170m 431 1.20
Mid 115 630m 116 0.29
Low 35 2400m 40 0.09
Moon 5 13200m 6.5 0.01

Pulse Width Modulation

There’s no PWM on any mode, but a couple of the higher modes have a bit of sawtooth. I did not find it to be noticeable, though.

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 is used to control the E18.  It’s a proud e-switch on the head, sitting in a proud bump on the body.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight e-switch

That said, I didn’t ever accidentally activate the switch. If you are prone to that problem, remember that the pocket clip can go either way (and in either way, it’s still a two-way), so you have plenty of options to get the switch in your pocket where you want it, to avoid accidental activations.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight e-switch profile

The action is very low, quite clicky, and reliable from any spot on the pad. I really like this switch!

Here’s the indicator feature, in green. It can also go red.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight e-switch indicating green

Here’s a UI table!

State Action Result
Off Click On (Memory)
On Click Off
On Hold Mode advance (Low to high direction)
Any Double Click Turbo
Any Click 3x Strobe
Off Click 5x Lock
Lock Click 5x Unlock

LED and Beam

Brinyte uses a Luminus SST-40 in the E18 Pheme.  This is coupled with a sort of unusual TIR optic.

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight emitter and TIR Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight emitter and TIR

The bezel unscrews easily, so if you want to swap emitters you should be good to go.  Here’s a better look at the optic – this is what makes the light so throwy!

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight bezel off

Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight emitter and TIR bezel off Brinyte E18 Pheme flashlight beamshot

LED Color Report (CRI and CCT)

There aren’t really any surprises here with the Luminus SST-40 emitter.  It’s Neutral White trending toward Cool, and low CRI.

Beamshots

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!

Conclusion

What I like

  • Slim design
  • Interesting body design (not “knurling” – not sure what to call it)
  • USB-C charging
  • Very throwy!
  • Clip can go on either end
  • Complete package
  • Standard 18650 cell (button top!)
  • Light works while plugged in to C power even without cell or tailcap

What I don’t like

  • C to C charging doesn’t work
  • Low CRI
  • Magnet not really strong enough to do anything
  • Cost – $70 seems a bit steep here

Notes

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