Nitecore EDC25

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Nitecore EDC25 review

Nitecore EDC25 specifications

Brand/modelNitecore EDC25
Flashlight categoryEDC flashlight / general purpose / tactical
LED2*UHi 20 LEDs
Max. output3,000 Lumens
Max. beam distance300 meters
Max. beam intensity22,500 cd
Battery config.built-in battery 1,700mAh
Onboard chargingUSB-C
Modes4+turbo
BlinkiesStrobe
WaterproofIP54
Review dateMay 2024

Review intro:

Hmm. that looks familiar! Yes, it looks a lot like the Nitecore EDC27 we reviewed a while back. If you need a refresh, head over to that review and read it yourself.

Is this an upgrade? And if so, does it have any nice upgrades? Or is this just a smaller sibling?

Let’s find out

What’s in the package

The Nitecore EDC25’s packaging is pretty basic with a picture of the flashlight on the front, some specs on the side, and more information on the back. It’s a retail packaging you can find in a brick and mortar store

  • The flashlight: Nitecore EDC25
  • Lanyard
  • USB-cord
  • Manual and warranty card

Flashlight in use, Build Quality, and Warranty

The EDC25 feels and handles totally different from any traditional cylindrical flashlight. The slim, flat body fits nicely in my pocket, albeit a bit long. If I carry a light in my pocket, I would like it to sit horizontally, instead of vertically. And that’s because it won’t pinch my side when I bend down or squat. But I may be an exception and many people use the pocket clip to carry it.. but I just almost never do that.

Besides sticking it in your pocket, or using it with the pocket clip, Nitecore also included a lanyard, that can be attached to the pocket clip. So you could attach your favorite lanyard beads or other accessories as well.

It has 2 switches, with 1 sticking out (called the Power button, for the main modes) and one that sits flush with the body, for Turbo mode and Strobe (called the Customizable button). The power switch is kind of like a forward clicky switch or a 2-stage switch. While the Customizable button is just an electronic switch. This is different from the EDC27 which was also a forward clicky switch. The other change on the EDC25 is that the Customizable switch can be programmed to have Turbo or Strobe mode. So you only get 1 of the 2, not both!!!

This is upgraded from the EDC27 by the way. With the upgraded switch, there is a more apparent second stage (or a click), compared to the EDC27. This makes activating momentary UltraLow mode easier, as well as mode switching. So that’s a very positive trend.

It’s best to lock out the light while carrying it because you will definitely turn it on by accident. The EDC25 has two lockouts. The first one is called the Half Lockout Mode, which means you can still access Turbo or Strobe but not the main modes.

Lockout 2 is a full lockout, and none of the switches work anymore. See the UI section to learn how to activate each lockout mode.

Nitecore got rid of the OLED display, and uses indicator LEDs instead. I guess that’s easier to use, less production cost, and likely less warranty and QC problems.

Oh, and because of its design, it won’t tailstand or roll off the table.

If you ask me what activities you could use this for, well, there are quite a few, keeping in mind that the lowest level is 15 lumens. For some people, that may be too high, but it totally depends on the situation and use case. In most cases, it’s plenty of light and not too bright.

I wouldn’t mind having this flashlight in my work bag or using it for outdoor activities, like walking the dog, or even camping. But with instant access to Turbo (3000 lumens) and Strobe, I can also see it as a useful tactical light!

The size and design make it more comfortable to use in the overhand (tactical) position, and the 2 switches at the rear make it easier to reach.

Warranty:

All NITECORE® products are warranted for quality. Any DOA / defective product can be exchanged for a replacement through a local distributor/dealer within 15 days of purchase. After that, all defective / malfunctioning NITECORE® products can be repaired free of charge within 60 months from the date of purchase. Beyond 60 months, a limited warranty applies, covering the cost of labor and maintenance, but not the cost of accessories or replacement parts.
The warranty will be nullified if
:

  1. the product(s) is/are broken down, reconstructed and/or modified by unauthorized parties;
  2. the product(s) is/are damaged due to improper use. For the latest information on NITECORE® products and services, please contact a local NITECORE® distributor or send an email to [email protected]

LED, Lens, Bezel, Beam, and Reflector

The Nitecore EDC25 uses LEDs different from those of the EDC27. Its predecessor used Luminus SST40 LEDs with TIR optics, and the new version uses 2* NiteLab UHi 20 LEDs with small reflectors.

These are said to be made specifically for Nitecore?

Whatever they are, their performance is what counts. I include the beam pattern, duv, CRI, etc.

The beam is more concentrated than the EDC27 due to using small LOP reflectors, resulting in a brighter hotspot and more throw. You’ll read more about that in the performance section of this review. (LOP stands for light orange peel).

Even with a tighter hotspot, the transition from hotspot to spill is still pretty smooth because of the relatively shallow reflectors.

In the lowest mode, the tint (duv) is greenish, but it changes when you increase its brightness.

Spectral measurements:  

I used a Sekonic C800 spectrometer to measure the flashlight at 5 meters distance in Medium and Turbo modes and 2-3 meters in Ultra Low mode.

Mode:CCT:CRI Ra:duvTM30 RfTM30 Rg
Ultra Low5498K65.70.01957288
Med5559K64.90.01727090
Turbo6471K67.40.00436893

Dimensions and its competition

Dimensions: 

Nitecore EDC25MillimetersInches
Length136mm5.4 in
Head thickness14mm0.6 in
Width31 mm1.2 in
Thickness including clip23 mm0.9 in

Dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter and the nearest tenth of an Inch.

Weight

Nitecore EDC25Weight in gramsWeight in oz.
Without battery:105 g3.7oz

Weight is rounded to the nearest gram and tenth of an Oz.

Nitecore EDC25 Flashlight comparison

Size compared to other rectangular flashlights

Group 1, from left to right: Nitecore Tini, Fenix E03R, Nitecore TUP, Wuben X0, Nitecore EDC25, Nitecore EDC27, Wuben X1

Group 2, Nitecore EDC27 and Nitecore EDC25

Nitecore EDC25 UI : User interface and driver

The EDC27 has 2 separate lighting modes, and you always get access to 1 of the 2 special modes, Turbo or Strobe. If you turn the light on in the normal light modes: Ultra low, low medium, high, you can use the second switch to activate Turbo or Strobe momentarily.

The available main modes:

  • Ultra Low, Low, Medium, High

The available special modes:

  • Turbo (only momentarily)
  • Strobe (only momentarily)

How the UI works when the flashlight is still turned OFF, with POWER button:

  • Half-press (short): indicator LEDs show battery status
  • Half-press (long): momentary Ultra Low mode (15lm)
  • Single-click: to last used mode, mode memory
  • Double click: nothing, just turns off

How the UI works when the flashlight is still turned OFF, with MODE/TACTICAL button:

There is no click, and the mode is only momentary. Once you let the switch go, the light will turn off. By default the special mode ‘Turbo’ is activated. Unlike the EDC27 which had a different switch with both Turbo and Strobe readily available

  • Press: special mode momentarily (only for about 15 seconds and drops down to 1000 lumens. You will see the blue LEDs going from 5 bars to 1 bar, before it turns down the output

How to switch between Strobe and Turbo mode? (PROGRAMMABLE)

By default, TURBO mode is selected for your special mode (customizable button). To change this to Strobe you simply have to press the customizable button (flat one), and fully click the Power button (the one that sticks out). Each time you fully click that power button you switch between Strobe and Turbo. You can’t have both!

How the UI works when the flashlight is turned ON:

  • Half-press power button: Cycle through the menu from Ultra Low to High
  • Single-click power button: turns off
  • Double click power button: nothing
  • Press power button: Turbo or Strobe (whichever you programmed)

Shortcuts within the UI:

  • To Turbo: (if selected) a single press on the customizable button
  • To Ultra Low: half press the power button, from off
  • To Strobe: (if selected) a single press on the customizable button

Mode memory:

  • Yes, it remember the main modes, including Ultra low

Blinky modes:

  • Strobe: press the customizable switch to activate strobe.
  • If you only get Turbo mode, you have to switch to Strobe by keep pressing the customizable button and fully click the Power button. You need to hear the click, and don’t half press it.

Low battery warning:

  • Battery indicators show low battery
  • 4 LEDs: 75-100%
  • 3 LEDs: 50-75%
  • 2 LEDs: 25-50%
  • 1 LED: 0-25%

Lock-out mode:

  • Yes. there are 2: Half Lockout Mode, and Full Lockout mode
  • You can enter Half Lockout Mode with 2 clicks and holding it during the second click. In Anduril terminology that would be 2H. Simpy release the switch after you see the lock symbol with the number 1 in your display.
  • For the Full Lockout Mode, you do the same, but keep pressing it, until the Lock LED will blink 2 tiemes.
  • To deactivate either of the Lockout modes, just repeat the process: press the switch 2 times, and hold it after the second click. You will see a countdown bar, and once the countdown bar is gone, you have it unlocked again.

PWM:

  • Not visible by eye

Firmware / UI Conclusion:

  • I like the way that Nitecore added the explanation on how to Lock Unlock the light. I took my EDC27 out but noticed it was locked.. I tried many ways to unlock it but couldn’t figure it out. It was a long time since I played with it.
  • The EDC25 now has the text printed on the body.. so nice! That’s definitely a nice upgrade, because you will likely forget how to lock-unlock it.

Nitecore EDC25 Charging and batteries

With the EDC25 you don’t need to worry about buying the right cells or a lithium-ion battery charger. Why not? because the battery is built in with a capacity of 1,700mAh. This is the same as its older sibling.

For some that is a no-go, since they would like to replace batteries on the go, and don’t want to wait for the built-in battery to charge. And on top of that, they say that the battery will once die, and you have a paper weight.

Charging is done with the included USB-C cable. It charges the battery at about 5V and 1.4A max. However, even though this is lower than the maximum charge rate of 1.7A on its older sibling, it still finishes faster.

I tested the charge time 3 times, and each time the full charge time was between 1h 11minutes and 1h 12 minutes. During charging you see the battery level indicators blink.

While charging, you can activate the light.

Charge typeFitsNo fitCharge time
Flashlight with onboard USB-CBattery is built-inN/A1h 11min

Performance test

This is the gear I use for testing:

GearPurposeLink to buy
Hagner E4-XMeasuring beam intensity (throw)Inquire at Hagner.se
2* Extech SDL400Lumens and logging runtimesAmazon.com, Amazon.co.uk,
Leica Disto D2Distance for throw measurementsAmazon.com, Amazon.co.uk,
Sekonic C-800 Spectrometer for LED measurementsAmazon.com, Amazon.co.uk
Uni-T UTi260BThermal Image cameraAmazon.com,

Lumen measurements:

How Lumens are Measured: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards How Lumens are Measured: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards: The ANSI FL1 standards specify that output in lumens should be measured 30 seconds after turning on, as this is the standardized time for measuring brightness according to the industry standard. This is why we focus on this part in our measurements. The ANSI FL1 standards require an ambient temperature of 22 ± 3°C. We record the ambient the ambient temperature to identify potential reasons for any observed discrepancies.

The output measurements in this review are based on my homemade integrating spheres, each equipped with an Extech SDL400 Lux Meter. For consistency and accuracy, a calibration light (Convoy S2+ with 249lm and a Convoy S2+ with 261lm) is measured before each set of lumen measurements.
One of the lux meters uses an ND camera filter for high-output lights to prevent the lux meter from maxing out. This is either the Kenko PRO1D ND16 for up to about 80,000 lumens or the Gobe ND32 for anything above.

All of my readings were taken from a fully-charged battery.

The measurements were taken manually at turn on and 30 seconds. The 10-minute numbers are taken from the runtime graph.

ModeSpecifiedAt turn on30 sec10 min
Ultra Low15 lm17 lm17 lm
Low65 lm74 lm74 lm74 lm
Med200 lm258 lm257 lm255 lm
High1000 lm1185 lm1031 lm898 lm
Turbo3000 lm3278 lm1066 lm

When compared to the older sibling (EDC27), it has slightly lower 30-second measurements but higher 10-minute measurements. So, it sustains a slightly higher output.

Turbo mode is only momentary for several seconds

Ambient temperature during testing:

  • 16.8 °C

Nitecore EDC25 Battery life and runtime

How Runtimes are Measured: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards About ANSI FL1 runtime standards: The runtime is measured until the light drops to 10% of its initial output (30 seconds after turning on). This does not mean that the flashlight is not usable anymore. The last column shows how long the light actually works till it shuts off. If there is a + symbol, it means that the test was stopped at that particular point, but the light was actually still running. This happens on certain occasions, with certain drivers, firmware, or batteries.

Runtime tests were conducted in my 50cm homemade integrating sphere, paired with the Extech SDL400 data logging Lux Meter. Temperatures from the moment the runtime test started.

ModeSpecifiedRuntime (ANSI FL1)Time till shut off
Ultra Low55h
Low (22.6°C)14h13h 42min13h 43min
Med (19.1°C)4h 15min3h 58min4h 01min
High (17.1°C)1h 30min57min1h 06min
Turbo*

I have not tested Ultra Low runtime, which was advertised as being 55 hours. Turbo mode is only accessible momentarily.

High mode was quite a bit shorter than specified. The graph shows that the output drops to below ANSI FL1 standards several minutes before the light shuts off. So, whenever that happens, you need to act quickly before it turns off.

I also compared the EDC25 to the EDC27.

nitecore edc25 runtime vs nitecore edc27

There is a clear difference in High mode, but not so big in Medium mode.

Nitecore EDC25 Peak beam intensity and beam distance measurements

About Peak beam intensity: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards About peak beam intensity The calculated value of distance in meters at which the flashlight produces a light intensity of 0.25 lux. (0.25 lux is about the brightness of a full moon shining on an object). This means that the intensity has decreased so much, it becomes difficult to see darker objects, or objects that don’t reflect light. The columns ‘Meters’ and ‘Yards’ use rounded numbers.

Measurements were taken indoors with a Hagner E4-X Lux Meter. The measurements were taken 30 seconds after turn on.

ModeSpecifiedcandela measuredmetersyards
Ultra Low145 cd100 cd20 m22 yd
Low680 cd425 cd41 m45 yd
Med2,000 cd1,500 cd77 m85 yd
High8,100 cd5,950 cd154 m169 yd
Turbo22,500 cd6,425 cd160 m175 yd
Turbo (at start)19,500 cd279 m305 yd

Turbo can only be used momentarily, so the manufacturer’s specified throw is only at turn-on—not at 30 seconds as it should be. But even at turn-on, I could only measure 19,500 cd instead of the advertised 22,500.

But even so, the other modes also performed lower than specified.. unlike the lumen output.

Ambient temperature during testing:

  • 18.9 °C

Beamshots

For the following beamshots, I used a Canon EOS 5D Mk2 with a 50mm lens. Manual settings: ISO1600, 1/4sec, F4, 5000K

The shed is about 65 meters / 71 yards away, and the reflective fence is about 200 meters.

Explore and compare the beamshots from the following flashlights:

  • Nitecore EDC25
  • Nitecore EDC27
  • Wuben X2
  • Olight Akfeld Ti

Please note that the following beamshots are mainly intended to showcase the beam pattern and beam quality, rather than overall performance. These images are typically taken directly after activation, and in different seasons or weather conditions, and therefore do not fully represent its overall performance. For accurate performance metrics, such as output, beam distance, and runtimes, you need to look at the performance section of this review.

Disclaimer: This flashlight was sent to us for review at no cost by Nitecore. We have not been paid to review, nor have we been holding back on problems or defects.

Final Verdict

Pros

  1. Lock-unlock explanation printed on the body (unlike the EDC27)
  2. Plenty bright in Turbo mode
  3. Only 1 special mode (either Turbo or Strobe) behind the customized button
  4. $15 cheaper than its predecessor (EDC27)
  5. Lighter than its predecessor
  6. Improved switch from its predecessor

Cons

  1. Lockout is required for pocket carry
  2. Ultra low mode at 15 lumens might be a little high for some?

Explanation on star ratings:

1: Avoid: my phone flashlight would be a better choice – 2: Poor: significant defect or issues; almost unusable – 3: Average: some defects or issues; but still usable 4: Good: recommended (minor issues) – 5: Great: highly recommended

Reviewer Marco
Author: Marco

4.5 stars: ★★★★⋆

While our star rating provides a reliable indicator, we encourage you to read the full review to make an informed decision based on your own needs and preferences.

Compared to the older EDC27, it has a few new, interesting features. It charges faster, has a better power switch (includes changing modes, and momentary Ultra Low), lockout activation printed on the body, and a more throwy beam.

They got rid of the OLED display, reduced the price, and still made it a good-performing light. Having a momentary Turbo can also be nice since you can’t expect a Turbo mode with 3,000 lumens to run long on this small flashlight anyway. So, you basically have a 1,000-lumen flashlight with a 3,000-lumen burst. Remember that this is a feature meant for temporary activation, not a fluke, as some may think.

Buy your Nitecore EDC25 here with a discount

Get 15% off by using discount code 15OFF on orders above $75. Below $75, use our unique coupon code 1Lumen to get 10% off.

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