Acebeam L35

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Acebeam L35 review: tactical thrower

Table of contents

Specifications

Brand/modelAcebeam L35
LEDCREE XHP70.2 (5000K)
Lumens5,000 lm
Beam intensity57,600 cd
Battery config.1*21700
MaterialAluminum
Modes6
BlinkiesStrobe,
ReflectorTIR
WaterproofIP68
Review dateDecember 2020

INTRODUCTION:

Acebeam has been around since 2014 (6 years as of this writing) (formerly Supbeam). They’re a brand that I’ve always thought well of.  They produce some very extreme, high-output flashlights (have you seen the new 60,000 lumen X70?!) as well as some less-extreme mainstream lights. To me, the new L35 sits somewhere in the middle. It’s a definite powerhouse with its 5000-lumen rating, yet despite using a Cree XHP70.2 LED which is normally floody, it maintains a respectable 480 meters while maintaining a fairly svelte figure for such a powerful tactical light. That all sounds good on paper – let’s see how it performs!

Package quality.

The Acebeam arrived in a fairly standard paperboard box that is nicely detailed.  Inside that box is a formed plastic tray with all of the goodies:

  • Acebeam L35
  • Acebeam-branded battery
  • Holster
  • Charging cable
  • Spare o-rings
  • Spare tailcap
  • Lanyard
  • Manual
  • Warranty card

Handling of the light

I always thought that 18650-based flashlights felt fine in the hand. But the more 21700 lights that I get my hands on, the more I find that I’m enjoying that size.  It just grips better, at the expense of some pocket-ability of course.  But overall, it sits in the hand really well. Grip is further aided by a cigar-grip ring near the tailcap.

There are a few ways to “attach” the L35: the pre-installed pocket clip, the lanyard, and the holster.  Honestly, the pocket clip seems a bit silly for a light that’s larger than a C8.  The lanyard is pretty standard-fare.   The holster, however, is a very nice addition to the kit.  It closes with a hook-and-loop fastener and holds the L35 snuggly.

The Acebeam L35 has two switches.  The tailcap houses a forward-clicky that is dedicated for momentary Turbo action.  The other switch is located on the side of the head and is an e-switch.  It controls all other functions of the light.

Build Quality, Knurling, Threads, and anodization

The L35 has very nice matte anodizing.  There’s a ring of standard diamond-shaped knurling around the head and tail.  The body tube is encircled in an interesting spiral cut.

The threads are smooth, square-cut, and lubed from the factory.  The light employs a dual-tube design.  The battery tube seems to be glued to the head.

While I do not condone disassembling your new Acebeam, the bezel does unscrew easily.  This allows the optic to be removed, which is protected by a piece of glass.  Doing so reveals the LED on its MCPCB.
When holding the L35, I just feel like I’m holding a well-built light.  And Acebeam believes it too, standing behind their product with an outstanding 5-year warranty against defects.

LED, LENS, BEZEL, AND REFLECTOR

My Acebeam L35 sample arrived with the Cree XHP70.2 in 5000K, a very respectable high-output LED.  It sits below a large TIR optic, which in turn sits below a piece of glass.  The glass arrives with a nice protective sticker on top of it.  The glass + TIR arrangement is held in place by a silver attack bezel.  It’s fairly aggressive; I certainly wouldn’t want to get hit with it.  And while you could stow the L35 in a jacket pocket for a while, I wouldn’t do so for an extended period of time, or you might end up with a hole in your pocket.

While TIRs generally help to eliminate some of the “Cree rainbow” that’s especially problematic on the recent generation of “flip chip” LEDs, there is still some amount of rainbow left.  Not too bad though.

One thing that I find intriguing – the L35 is also offered with an unheard of LED: the Lattice Power P70. It’s a domeless LED that trades a bit of lumens for additional throw. I can’t wait to see some news on this Lattice Power LED.

Dimensions

  • Length: 152 mm / 6.0 inches
  • Head diameter:  54.2 mm / 2.1 inches
  • Body diameter:  25.4 mm / 1.0 inches

Weight: 

  • With battery: 241 g / 8.5 oz
  • Without battery: 168 g / 5.9 oz

Popular flashlights compared

Big optic throwers, left to right: Acebeam L35, Manker MC13

Common long-range flashlights, left to right: Emisar D1S, Sofirn C8, Acebeam L35, Convoy M21C-U

Driver & User Interface:

The Acebeam L35 has a very intuitive user interface using it’s dual switch setup.

Modes: Moonlight, Low, Mid1, Mid2, High, Turbo, Strobe

From OFF:

  • Tailswitch half-click: momentary Turbo
  • Tailswitch click: Turbo
  • Side switch press and Hold: Moonlight
  • Side switch single click: last used mode
  • Side switch double click: Turbo
  • Side switch triple click: Strobe
  • Side switch 5-second hold: Lock-out

From ON:

  • Tailswitch click: off
  • Side switch single click: off
  • Side switch double click: Turbo
  • Side switch triple click: Strobe

Mode memory:

  • Yes, there is mode memory
  • Normal modes will be memorized, but not Moonlight, Turbo, or Strobe

Low voltage warning:

  • There is an indicator LED on the side near the button, but separate from it
  • Green: >30% remaining
  • Red constant: 10-30% remaining
  • Red flashing: <10% remaining

Strobe/blinkies

  • Strobe is accessed with a triple click from either on or off

Lock-out mode: 

  • While off, hold the side switch for 5 seconds to activate lock-out.  Hold again for 3 seconds to deactivate the lock.  When locked out, even the tail switch will not function.

PWM

  • PWM was not observed in any mode

Additional info: aside from the lock-out, the tail switch will override all functionality.  No matter whether the light is on or off, pressing the tail switch will activate Turbo.

Batteries & Charging

The L35 kit came with an Acebeam-branded 5100 mAh 21700 battery.  It has a built-in USB-C charging port. The charge rate was observed to be only 0.75 amps, which seems a bit low for such a large capacity battery. So either be prepared for a long charge cycle or pop it into your favorite charger assuming it can handle such a long cell. It was able to fit in my Vapcell S4+, though it was wedged in at an angle.vs non protected fit?

Check out the best 21700 battery chargers to see which one will fit these cells best.

If you have some spare unprotected, flat top 21700 batteries around, you are good to go. Flat tops work as well.

Performance

For current measurements, a ANENG AN8008 multimeter and UNI-T UT210E clamp meter were used. Lux was measured by a UNI-T UT383 BT at 10 meters. Lumens were measured in a homemade lumen tube using a TSL2591 sensor, calibrated against several known lights. The temperature was monitored with an MLX90614 IR temperature sensor.

Amp measurement  

  • Standby: 168 uA
  • Moonlight: 13 mA
  • Low: 98 mA
  • Mid1: 291 mA
  • Mid2: 1.1 A
  • High:  2.6 A
  • Turbo: 15.5 A

Runtime graph

In the Turbo runtime test, it started out at 6189 lumens at start up. It slowly ramped down for the first 40 seconds before dropping down sharply. At 30 seconds into the run, it measured an impressive 5609 lumens.  Just before the minute mark, it settled in around 1800 lumens and stayed there for the remainder of the test until it shut off at 86 minutes. The highest observed temperature was a rather toasty 69°C.

Another runtime test was performed, this time in High mode. It started out at 1906 lumens and tapered down ever so slightly, staying around 1800 lumens for the entire run which ended at 101 minutes with a max observed temperature of 63°C.

I also ran a test of the Mid2 mode. It stayed right around 800 lumens for 266 minutes, maxing out at a comfortable 38°C.

Lumen measurements (for each mode)

  • Moonlight: 1 lm
  • Low: 77 lm
  • Mid1: 240 lm
  • Mid2: 818 lm
  • High: 1906 lm
  • Turbo @ 0 sec: 6189 lm
  • Turbo @ 30 sec: 5609 lm (spec: 5000 lm) 

Throw numbers: 

  • Lux at 10m: 570 lx
  • Candela: 57,000 cd

Throw: 477 meters / 521 yards (spec: 480 m)

Beamshots

  • Outdoor beam shots are taken at 25m (82ft) using a Pixel 3 set to ISO 200 with ½ second exposure time
  • Acebeam L35
  • Astrolux FT03 Mini Copper
  • Convoy M21C-U
  • Sofirn SP33 V3

Disclaimer: This flashlight was sent to me for review at no cost, by Acebeam. I have not been paid to review, nor have I been holding back on problems or defects.

OVERALL CONCLUSION

PROS

  1. Very bright
  2. Sustainable High mode
  3. Well regulated
  4. Fairly compact
  5. Nice kit with rechargeable battery and holster

Cons

  1. Short-lived Turbo mode
  2. Battery’s built-in charging is slow
Reviewer Gabriel
Author: Gabriel

5 stars: ★★★★★

The Acebeam calls the L35 a long distance, super-bright tactical flashlight. And it absolutely lives up to everything that Acebeam claims. Throw was spot-on with their 480 meter spec and I measured over their 5000 lumen spec. That tailswitch definitely says “tactical” while still being useful for other situations – you know you’re always going to get Turbo no matter what when you press that button. The UI is intuitive with shortcuts to both Moonlight and Turbo. And the driver is extremely well regulated and efficient.  Sure, I would love to see it be able to sustain Turbo a bit longer, but I feel that’s a bit unrealistic for a flashlight barely bigger than the ubiquitous C8. What really impresses me is the 101-minute 1800-lumen High mode.  Oh yeah, that and the build quality. If you’re in the market for a fairly compact high-output flashlight, do yourself a favor and check out the Acebeam L35 – this thing is awesome!

Acebeam L35 FOR SALE

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