Wuben X-0 Knight Flashlight Review
Wuben has released the X-0 Knight flashlight, a light that offers USB-C charging as well as many tritium slots and a novel design. Read on!
Official Specs and Features
There are two emitter options, and they’re available in different body finishes. Both aluminum and titanium are available. Below, the white and black are aluminum, and green and grey are titanium. Here’s a stock photo by Wuben. The emitters are Osram P9 and Samsung LH351d – based on specs I think this is the Samsung version.
The pricing starts at $39 and goes up for the more colorful options. What I’m reviewing here is the least expensive model. Based on conversions I’m seeing right now, the most expensive model is around $110.
Here’s the Kickstarter link to the Wuben X-0 Knight flashlight (a tracking link).
This is a funny little light. Wuben is no stranger to making lights with built-in batteries, but this is not one!! The Wuben X-0 Knight flashlight uses a standard 18350 cell, and despite whatever you might read elsewhere, it’s quite easy to change. It’s quite a neat light, and if you’re in the market for a neat light, it’s a good one to grab. It’s not even expensive, and the aluminum is still quite fetching. I think I’ve called the emitter “Cool White” a number of places below but it’s not really – it’s very much neutral!
The Big Table
|Wuben X-0 Knight Flashlight|
|Emitter:||Osram P9 (or Samsung LH351d)|
|Price in USD at publication time:||$39.00 Kickstarter tracking link here!|
|Turbo Runtime Graph||High Runtime Graph|
|Quiescent Current (mA):||?|
|Charge Port Type:||USB-C|
|Power off Charge Port||with cell: all modes
without cell or tailcap: lower 3 modes only
|Claimed Lumens (lm)||1100|
|Measured Lumens (at 30s)||688 (62.5% of claim)^|
|Candela per Lumen||4.1|
|Claimed Throw (m)||130|
|Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s)||161lux @ 4.832m = 3759cd|
|Throw (Calculated) (m)||122.6 (94.3% of claim)^|
|Claimed CCT||Unstated (?)|
|Measured CCT Range (K)||4600-5100 Kelvin|
|Item provided for review by:||Wuben|
|All my Wuben 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).
I am not sure if I received only a review package or the full retail package, but here’s what’s included in mine:
- Wuben X-0 Knight flashlight
- Spare o-rings (2)
- Charging cable (USB to USB-C)
Package and Manual
Again, I think that box you see above is just the reviewer’s box – you’d probably get something different. Same with the manual – I didn’t get a manual but Wuben did email me this version below.
Build Quality and Disassembly
First, the Wuben X-0 Knight flashlight uses a matte finish white anodizing. I think that’s probably very much like what Convoy is using now, and it’s great! There’s a good bit of grip added because of this matte finish, but it’s not quite chalkboardy like Armytek’s anodizing.
Next, note that this light is very angular – there’s not much tube-ishness going on here! That’s a nice change of pace. You’ll like that or not like it, but either way i can say that it’s a nice anti-roll feature. 🙂
There are a few slots for tritium all over the light (I count six) but the slot to the right that you see below is not one of them. The slot below is an indicator! Those two slots on the blue part (at left) are tritium slots!
Again, the whole design is very angular. Even the pocket clip carries on this very squared, angular design.
The tailcap is removable. Thus, the Wuben X-0 Knight is a “right angle” flashlight. This tailcap was a point of contention for many users who feared that the (standard!) 18350 used in this light was not replaceable. It is very much replaceable. I don’t even think you really need any special tools to remove this tailcap. I used a pair of (plastic!) tweezers, but the threads are smooth enough and the closure is “clean” enough that you could use makeshift probably nearly anything – a paper clip for example. Yes, you will probably not remove this tailcap by hand, but no you won’t need a watchmaker’s case back removal tool!
Inside the tailcap is this brass bit which is slotted – I think you could remove the magnet in there if you wanted to do so.
The positive contact is a spring.
Size and Comps
I’m going to add Wuben’s illustration here because it’s great!
Officially: 57mm long, 24.5mm and 28mm across, and 82g.
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
A screw-down pocket clip is attached from the factory. This clip carries the design of the body, which is a nice touch.
The clip also matches the switch in color of anodizing. Another nice touch!
I did find the clip just a bit hard to use because the mouth is quite narrow and it’s across a flat part of the light (the whole light is flat parts!). Anyway, the carry isn’t as deep as I’d want to carry such a short light, so I would certainly carry this light deep in a pocket. I’d lock it out first. 😀
There’s also a magnet, which I mentioned above. The magnet is strong enough to hold the Wuben X-0 Knight flashlight in any orientation.
The pocket clip has a couple of holes for a lanyard, but a lanyard is not included.
Power and Runtime
The Wuben X-0 Knight flashlight runs on a single 18350 cell. The button-top cell you see below is included!
This is an 1100mAh 18350.
As covered above, the tailcap is removable. You’ll want to use some tweezers or something, but once you’ve gotten past the initial turn or so, the tailcap can be removed by hand. Removal is not difficult!
The cell goes into the light in the usual orientation: positive terminal (button) toward the head.
Standard 18350 cells do work here, too. Even flat tops, thanks to the spring in the head!
In case you forget which orientation to install the cell, there’s a little icon reminder on the tail end.
Below are a couple of runtimes. I didn’t see output quite as high as Wuben’s claim, but overall performance is acceptable. Notably, once the light has stepped down, the output is very flat!
Wuben put a USB-C port in the top (or “head”) of this light. They say this is a waterproof port.
The port is accessed by flipping up this blue hinged switch cover. In fact, it’s not just a switch cover. It’s a lever switch, a charge port cover, and a place to install tritium! Quite versatile.
Wuben includes a charging cable, too, which is USB to USB-C.
I mentioned in the table that the light can be used while charging. That’s true, but the switch is practically inaccessible while the charging cable is installed.
Here’s a C to C charge graph. Wuben states around 1.5 hours for charging, and I’d say that’s about right.
USB to USB-C works as well, of course.
The LED indicator on top does indicate while charging. Red while charging and blue when charging is complete.
Modes and Currents
|Mode||Mode Claimed Output (lm)||Claimed Runtime||Measured Lumens||Tailcap Amps|
Pulse Width Modulation
I don’t think what we’re seeing here is really “PWM” but just more of a sawtooth. I don’t find it to be visible during use, anyway.
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 switch itself is a soft-cover e-switch. But over that switch is the blue anodized lever-style switch. This metal part also serves as a charging port cover.
The action in this switch is great.
You’ll see it below, but there are two brass buttons for this metal cover to rest against. When the cover goes from “up” (all the way up) to down, there’s a very pleasant ‘thonk’ that I can’t even describe. The cover has no bounce at all, and because of this thonk, could be described adequately as a fidget toy, too. Turns out that those two brass buttons are springy, and “catch” the cover when it lands. It’s exceptionally pleasant.
It’s possible to use the e-switch without the levered part. That switch is fairly tiny, and fairly hidden though.
As you can see, the switch cover is translucent. It doesn’t directly have indicating features (I think), but the indicator visible from the top of the light (not visible in the photo below because of the hinged cover) has indicating features that also light up the switch just a bit.
Here’s a UI table!
|Off||Click||On (Mode Memory) and battery indicator from near-switch LED^|
|On||Hold||Mode advance (Moon, Low, Med, High)|
|Off||Hold||Eco (Or “Moon”, they call it both)|
|Off or Turbo||Double Click||Strobe|
|Strobe||Click||Return to previous state except Turbo, which resumes to Moon|
|Off||Click 4x||Lockout (indicated by three blinks from main emitter)|
|Lockout||Click||Lockout indication by LED indicator near switch|
|Lockout||Click 4x||Unlock to Moon|
|Any steady mode (excluding Turbo)||Click then Hold (two actions; it’s not just “hold” it’s: click first then hold)||Program output of selected mode^^|
|Lockout||Click [wait], Double Click [wait], Triple Click||Resets light to default state. Light unlocks and turns on to Eco to confirm.|
^ Battery indication is as follows (from the near-switch LED)
Blue steady: ≥90% power
Blue flashing: 90% to ≥40% power
Red steady: 40% to ≥15% power
Red flashing: 15% to ≥ 0% power
^^ In programming mode, the output ramps up to the maximum possible for that level and blinks then begins ramping down to the lowest output possible for that mode and again blinks. When you release the switch, that mode is programmed to that output level.
LED and Beam
Wuben states that the emitter used in this light is an Osram P9. I was nearly sure they stated it’s a cool white emitter but I can’t find that now. Either way, it’s pleasantly neutral! Wuben also offers a Samsung LH351d option. Specs for either emitter are not given, and I couldn’t remove the bezel. So I’m left with the picture you can see below to try to determine if this is the Osram or Samsung (at least visually).
As you can see above and below, Wuben has used this very shallow TIR optic, which gives a very throwy beam profile (which I love!)
I’m not sure if the bezel can be removed but it has reeding that leads me to believe with the right motivation, someone could remove it.
LED Color Report (CRI and CCT)
What we have here from this Osram P9 is a pleasantly neutral white (around 4600K to 5100K) and surprisingly high CRI. In fact, now that I look at these numbers, I wonder if Wuben sneaked me one of the Samsung LH351d emitter options, which I think were only available if the Kickstarter hit its funding goal. I don’t know of any high CRI Osram P9 emitters. I will check with Wuben on this and update the review if things need to be changed!
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
- Good CCT (4600K-5100K)
- Good CRI (93)
- Great user interface
- Programmable modes
- Plenty of tritium slots
- Replaceable 18350 (standard!)
- Unique design
- Low cost for basic model of such a unique light
What I don’t like
- Exposed USB-C port (even if it’s waterproof)
- Hard to use pocket clip
- Kickstarter funding for the light
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