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Lumintop GT Nano Review: V1 with NarsilM
|Lumintop GT Nano v1
|Osram KW CSLNM1.TG
Another Lumintop GT? Again a thrower? Yes to both of them. But it’s nothing like the Lumintop GT, GT70, GT90 or GT94, it’s a little smaller. I mean, a whole lot smaller. It’s so tiny that even my wife wants to have it.. and she doesn’t particularly like flashlights.
Currently, the lineup of Lumintop GT flashlights consist of the following:
- Lumintop BLF GT
- Lumintop BLF GT70
- Lumintop BLF GT90
- Lumintop BLF GT94
- Lumintop BLF GT4
- Lumintop GT3
- Lumintop GT Mini (18650)
- Lumintop GT Micro (14500)
- Lumintop GT Nano (10180)
The Lumintop GT Nano being the smalles of them all, but still with the shape of the original GT model. It’s really interesting to see the similarities between the large GT90 and the GT Nano.
With a cute little light, you’ll receive a cute little box. The box basically fits in the palm of your hand. Very small and very cute. It’s a hard, cardboard box, that gives adequate protection to all the stuff on the inside. Because even though it’s quite small, the number of accessories is very decent.
- The Lumintop GT Nano flashlight
- 2 spare o-rings
- Keychain attachment clip
- Micro USB charger
- Micro USB-cable
Handling of the light
No, you definitely don’t need to use a lanyard for its weight, but it does look cute to carry it around. Heck, it looks even a bit toyish. I could imagine most people thinking this is just some sort of toy. But in reality, what this toy can do is actually quite amazing! Really, it can throw farther than many other flashlights, albeit for a very, very short time.
The body of the flashlight is also really short and small. I hope they will release a 10440 tube soon after publishing this review. A 10440 battery can have about 4-5 times the capacity of a 10180 battery.
Holding the light is fun, though. It’s so small that some people may have difficulty turning it on. It’s best to press the switch with the point of your fingers or even your nails.
The switch is an electronic switch, combined with the NarsilM v1.3 firmware. How that works can be read in the User Interface section, later on.
You won’t get much grip with this size flashlight, but it’s definitely fun to use. It’s more of a gimmick or something for display. Everyone in my household was interested in it and were glad to take it off my hands.
Build Quality, Knurling, Threads, and anodization
Because the GT Nano is so small, it has only 2 parts, the body (including tailcap) and the head. Both parts are anodized, including the threads. I couldn’t find anything wrong with it.
The charger looks like made of copper, and includes a Micro USB port.
LED, LENS, BEZEL, AND REFLECTOR
It’s so interesting that this small flashlight actually throws farther than 90% of the flashlights that ever have been produced! To get to this prestigious achievement, Lumintop is using the best ‘throw LED’ available at this moment. And that is the Osram CSLNM1.TG is a 1mm LED with a very high surface intensity. The LED is domeless and sits on a copper MCPCB, according to Lumintop. Edit: I confirmed this, see picture below.
The LED sits in a relatively deep (very deep for its size) and wide, smooth reflector. Without this size and kind of reflector, it wouldn’t have been able to reach this far. Check out my measurements below to find out what distance I beam distance I measured.
Its bezel is made of aluminum and anodized black, just like the rest of the flashlight. Underneath the bezel is an AR coated glass lens to maximize passing light through.
The beam has a very slight greenish tint but with a small hotspot. The spill is pretty wide compared to the hotspot and like other throwers with a deep reflector have a strong defined line at the outer edge of the beam. Only orange peel reflectors and TIR optics can have a much smoother transition between the most outside spill of the beam and outside the beam.
- Length: 53.3 mm / 2.097 ”
- Head diameter: 24 mm / 0.947”
- Body diameter: 14 mm / 0.55 ”
- Empty: 17.4 g / 0.61 oz
- With battery: 20.7 g / 0.73 oz
Tiny flashlight comparison
Size is comparable to an AA Eneloop battery and next to an 18650 battery.
Size compared to other, very small flashlights.
And last picture: GT Nano on top of Lumintop BLF GT90
Driver & User Interface:
Note: this is the first version of the GT Nano, running NarsilM firmware. There is another version of this light using a different firmware. Beware.
The Lumintop GT Nano uses the NarsilM v1.3 firmware. This firmware was designed by BLF member TomE, and adapted by BLF member Texas_Ace. See more info on this firmware here: http://budgetlightforum.com/node/54635
Turbo mode can only be activated by a double click. When using the ramping mode, you can only get up to what I call “High mode”. When you reach the end of the ramp, you see a few flashes.
- By default, it has a smooth ramping menu.
- You can change this, in the firmware, to 12 other mode sets.
- For all mode sets, I refer to the link above.
DEFAULT MODE: FROM OFF:
- Press and hold: Low
- Single-click: to last used brightness setting, mode memory
- Double click: Turbo
- Triple-click: Battery voltage check
- 4 clicks: Lock Out mode, repeat to unlock.
- 5 clicks: Momentary On mode for signaling (unscrew battery to go back to normal settings)
- Press and hold: Smoothly ramp up and down
- Single-click: turns the flashlight Off
- Double click: Turbo
- Triple-click: Battery voltage check
- 4 clicks: Lock Out mode, repeat to unlock
- 5 clicks: Momentary On mode
LOW BATTERY WARNING:
- According to the manual it does blink when it reaches 3V. Mine started blinking from the last output drop around 4 hours.
- Yes, the Lumintop GT Nano has a special Lock-out mode. You can get there from either the On or Off position by doing 4 rapid clicks.
- Nothing that I could notice by eye, which is what counts.
FIRMWARE / UI CONCLUSION:
The UI can fit most people’s needs. If you don’t play with the switch too much, you’ll be fine. Just use the ramping mode, Turbo, and Low, and that is good enough for this type of light! The Momentary ON is also pretty cool though, in case you need to do some morse coding… or annoy your neighbors. For all the other customizable settings I would refer to the manual if you can understand it. It’s not easy to understand it though, good luck.
Batteries & Charging
If you have never seen a 10180 lithium-ion battery, you’ll be surprised. The smallest battery I used to have was the MBI 10250 lithium-ion battery. At least one that I could replace. Sure, there must be a 10180 in one of my other small lights, like the Lumintop Glow I or the Olight i1R 2 EOS. But they aren’t replaceable (the normal way).
Lumintop added a nice little charger that charges the battery at a pretty low charge rate. It screws onto the tailcap of the flashlight. During charge, a red light appears, which turns green when it finishes. The charger has a white cap that you need to unscrew first.
Mine showed a 0.1A charge current. Keep in mind that the 10180 only has a capacity of up to 80mAh. Yes, you read that correctly, 80mAh.
An adapter should also be available soon that enables you to use 10440 batteries. 10440 batteries can have a capacity of 300mAh+, meaning an increase of 4 times the 10180 battery.
Another thing I noticed: when the light is turned off, and the battery is charged, the side switch still has a red glow. A red LED is usually an indicator of a low battery. It’s so dim and probably useless, so removing that little LED might even slightly increase its runtime.
All output numbers are relative to my homemade Integrating Sphere. It is set up with an Extech SDL400 Lux Meter for measurements including a Kenko PRO1D ND-16 filter. The base measurement is done with a Convoy S2+ that has been tested at 255 lumens.
Unfortunately, I couldn’t measure the lowest output with my current setup. The 10 minutes measurement was taken from the runtime graph.
The runtime test was done with the 50cm integrating sphere, including the Kenko Pro1D ND-16 filter and Extech SDL400 data logging Lux Meter.
Turbo and High look quite similar in terms of drops. My time intervals are at 5 seconds for all my reviews at the moment, so the drop in output starts at 0 seconds, lol. Therefore it’s a little hard to get the highest reading on this little monster.
Runtime is about 11 minutes, and at 15 minutes it’s just a 1 lumen output for another 30 minutes or so. So this is really just a toy to play with.
For people who like to see the lowest mode’s runtime, look at the next graph. A very exciting graph :–)
I hope you love that graph. 16 hours of a straight line.
Measurements were taken indoors at 5 meters with a professional Hagner E4-X Lux Meter. Measurements were taken at startup because of the quick drop in output.
- Indoors (5m): 35000 cd = 374 meters / 409 yards of throw
Please remember that these numbers are just for the first second or so. You can see in the runtime graphs above, that the output drops like a rock… hmm pebble… thanks for the joke Gabriel ;–D
For the following beamshots I used a Canon EOS 5D Mk2 and a 50mm lens. manual settings: ISO1600, 1/4sec , F4, 5000K
The shed is about 65 meters / 71 yards away, and the reflective fence about 200+ meters.
Please keep in mind that these shots were taken at start! You should ALWAYS check the runtime graphs to see how a flashlight keeps its brightness. You don’t want to buy a flashlight and expect the same output across its runtime. That is pretty rare, so make sure you take a look at the runtime before jumping on this flashlight.
Disclaimer: This flashlight was sent to me for review at no cost, by Lumintop. I have not been paid to review, nor have I been holding back on problems or defects.
- Smallest real thrower in the world
- Throws very far for its size
- No PWM
- 10180 battery has a very small capacity
- Doesn’t include a 10440 adapter by default
4 stars: ★★★★
Just for fun, this flashlight is worth: 5 stars.. For practicality, it’s maybe a 3-4 because of the tiny battery and quick drop in output. The included 10180 battery has just 80 mAh, and waiting/getting the 10440 battery might be worth the wait. For the rest, this is the farthest throwing flashlight in the world at this size! It’s quite spectacular if you think that it still outthrows about 80% of all flashlights in the world 🙂