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Thrunite TC12

 Budda    03 Apr 2017 : 17:25

I received the Thrunite TC12 for the review, curtesy of Thrunite. Thrunite makes a CW and NW version of this light, I got the NW one. (link is external) (5% OFF here) (link is external)

Thrunite Specs for the TC12 NW
• LED: CREE XP-L V6 LED with a lifespan of 20 years of run time.
• Runs on: 1×18650 battery (included).
• Working voltage: 2.75V-6.0V.
• Charging current/voltage: 5V, 1A.
• Peak beam intensity: 14399cd.
• Max beam distance: 240m.
• Power interface: 1 * micro USB charging port.
• Waterproof to IPX-8 Standard (2 meters).
• Impact resistant: 1 meters.
• Working Temperature: -40℃-80℃.
• Dimensions: 140mm (length) x 25.4mm (body diameter).
• Weight: 87g (excluding battery).
• Accessories: Holster x1, Spare O ring x2, Lanyard x1, Pocket Clip x1,
18650 3400mAh Battery x1, USB Charging Cord x1.

The light comes in this cardboard box.

The TC12, with all the accessories: Thrunite 3400mAh 18650 battery, pouch, micro USB cable for charging, silica bag, manual, warranty card, spare o-rings and seals.

The TC12 is a long 18650 powered light.

There is knurling on the body and the tailcap of the light.

The U shaped tailcap hosts a forward mechanical switch, easy to access and operate.

On the head there is an electronic switch (medium pressure required to push it, nice tactile and auditory feedback) with an LED underneath it, and a micro USB charging port.

The clip comes already installed and has the edges that attach on the body bent.

The body connects to the tailcap with a curved portion, so it is easier to hold the light at the tailcap.

The LED is an XP-L NW, in an OP reflector with AR coating glass on top.

Threads are anodized and thick

The positive contact point at the head is a wide and not so strong spring. Flat top and button top cells work fine.

Size comparison with other 18650 lights with integrated micro USB charging port: Manker U11 and Zenflare F1.

The sheath can carry the light both ways and it has a belt loop and a plastic D-ring.

Click the tailcap switch to turn the light on and off.
Press the side switch to cycle between the modes (in this order: firefly, low, mid, high, turbo, firefly…). After the light is on for a few seconds, when you click the side switch to change levels, the light will go back to firefly mode.
Keep pressed the side switch to activate the strobe (it alternates fast and slow patterns).
The light has memory mode so it will turn on at the last used mode
When the light is on at any but firefly mode, the LED under the switch will turn on and the color will correspond to the battery charging state:
blue >20%,
10%<red flashing<20%,
red solid<10%.

To charge the light with the micro USB port you will need to turn the light on, and the charging will start. To turn the main LED off while charging, you have to keep pressed the side switch.
During the charging process, the LED under the switch will be:
Purple, if there is an error
Red, if it is charging
Blue, if the charging is complete

Beamshots at 0.5 meters from the wall

The tint on the TC12NW is a nice yellow neutral, but it is slightly slightly green on firefly and low modes.
No sign of PWM at any level to my eye.

Output and runtime
Output and runtime have been tested with the Thrunite 18650 3400mAh battery that comes with the light.
The battery has been tested with my standard 18650 protocol (charged at 1.0A and then discharged with a 2A current, until 2.8 volts are reached in my SKYRC MC3000).

In the specs Thrunite says:
ITC Technology: The light will automatically lower the current when temperature in LED or driver rises to 80 degrees centigrade to protect the flashlight from overheating.
So I made two tests at turbo mode, one without cooling, one cooling the light with a fan.

There is in fact a thermal controlled regulation of the light.

My thoughts
The light is well built and finished, as you would expect from Thrunite. I like that the light comes in a CW and NW option (and a pleasant NW tint), and I’d like to see the light available with an XP-L Hi emitter, for increased throw.
I like the idea of the LED on the side that indicates the remaining capacity, but I’d like to know when I’m under 50-60% of battery capacity, and not discover suddenly that I have only 20% of the capacity (!). So, I’ll change the indicator value to:

Blue: 100-50%
Red flashing: 50-30%
Solid red: 20%.
The light doesn’t have a shortcut for low and turbo, only for strobe. I’d like my light to have a shortcut for a low and a high mode. I don’t like that the light returns to firefly when you change level after the light is on for a few seconds.
It is always nice to have a sheath that will both protect and increase the chance of you carrying and using the light. However, the sheath that comes with the TC12 looks a bit cheap, made of a thin layer of padded low denier cordura. Also, I’d like to have MOLLE capability on all my pouches.
The charging feature with the commonly available micro USB port is a nice addition, allowing you to charge the battery almost everywhere, without an additional external charger. However, you have to remember to turn the light on in order to charge it, and if you want to turn the light off when charging you have to do it manually, every time. It would be nice if the light will turn off when the charging starts, by default.
I wonder if the removal of the mechanical switch at the tailcap could both simplify the charging process and decrease the overall size of the light.

This light has a rather simple UI, well spaced levels and comes ready to work at an acceptable price; making it suitable for a gift to a non flashaholic person (but remember to explain them the charging procedure).

Thanks to: AntoLed for the camera and the luxmeter.