Chapter in this post:
Anyone who grew up with Maglite flashlights like me in the past will understand the fascination I have for the small LED flashlights. In order to get a similar light output with a light bulb Maglite in the past, one was on the move with a 1,5 kg flashlight, which one could easily have used as a stick. This is nice for people who care about self-defense, but if you're looking for something lightweight for hiking or household use, an LED flashlight will do much better. That's why I recently got the Wuben C3 Bought a flashlight with LED bulbs.
We have had a puppy for two months who always has to go out at night. The bladder does not hold tight all night and we have to go out into the garden once or twice a night with the wuffie.
Since it is really dark here in the country at night, when there is no full moon, lighting was needed - ideally one that can be left permanently outside on the windowsill so that you always have it to hand when you walk out the front door running. "Waterproof" and "handy" were two important aspects when choosing.
It was also important to me that the flashlight works with an 18650 battery, as these offer enough power to make a good deal of light. At this point a reference to my article on the Chargers for the type 18650 batteries. A charger is not necessary with the Wuben LED torch, as the battery is charged in the lamp.
This brings us to the second important point: Another criterion was a charging option via USB-C. I'm making a point of having a USB-C port on any device I currently buy because I'm finally getting rid of the horrible ones Micro-USB- want to get away from cables. The micro-USB charging port, where you always have to check whether you are plugging in the cable in the right direction, gets pretty annoying in the long run.
For the sake of completeness, here are the "specs" of the LED flashlight:
I purposely did not access the models that cost around 10 euros, as they have rather mixed customer ratings. The Wuben C3 costs around 25 euros, but has almost only 5 star ratings - and rightly so, because the small LED flashlight is really good.
In addition, the selection of USB-C models is very modest, so that you hardly get anything cheap that is also well rated. The Wuben C3 is not super cheap, but for its features it is available for a good price.
The size is also nice and handy - although that should be taken literally, because it fits exactly in one (large) hand. The weight is also comfortable and hardly carries more in the backpack than a bar of chocolate.
The different light modes contain 4 different light intensities, whereby the weakest is something for reading in the tent and the brightest is useful when looking for your dog on the sports field.
The brightness levels are distributed as follows:
For comparison: the iPhone LED of the newer models has approx. 50-60 lumens at the highest level. For most purposes, level 2 or 3 should be perfectly adequate. For our little garden tour, level 3 is great, so that you don't get too "awake" ... After all, you don't want to get up at 3 o'clock, but afterwards fall back into bed and go back to sleep.
The highest brightness level is reduced from 1200 lumens to 500 lumens after one minute because of the heat development. However, this is less tragic than you might think, because even the 500 lumens are pretty bright.
The switch used to turn on Wuben's small LED flashlight is attached to the rear end of the “tube”. When operating, you can either press lightly to rotate through the light levels or press the button two or three times lightly and quickly to activate the stroboscopic flash or the SOS mode.
If, on the other hand, you press the button firmly, you hear a click and you switch the lamp on or off.
An Amazon review says that the lamp rotates through the light modes if you want to turn it off again within 2 seconds of switching it on. Indeed, if you don't leave it turned off for more than 2 seconds. It then switches itself off anyway, but the next time it is switched on, the next light mode is active. The manufacturer could improve this, as it is not what you would expect when using it. For me it is not a big problem, because I rarely activate the flashlight for less than two seconds.
In any case, a good feature is that the Wuben LED flashlight remembers the light mode that was last active. This storage takes place if a mode was active for more than three seconds.
If you switch the lamp on again the next time, this stored luminosity is activated. This is helpful when you want to stay in a certain mode. For example, if you are camping with someone, you do not want to accidentally activate the brightest mode, because then everyone in the tent is awake.
One problem that some powerful LED flashlights have is the heat build-up in the brightest mode. Even with the Wuben C3, this is obviously no exception, because the manufacturer has built in an automatic system that reduces the highest light level (1200 lumens) to 500 lumens after about a minute.
With the (still quite bright) reduced brightness, you can clearly see that the LED gives off heat when you shine on the palm of your hand, but even a slate plate that is illuminated for a long time does not get over 45 ° C warm.
After 5 minutes of lighting at the highest (or then reduced) intensity, the housing of the flashlight only showed two hotspots at which the temperature was 37 ° C. So you are still a long way from burning your fingers anywhere.
A green and red LED is installed in the front area of the housing, which is used to display the charge level. Within 5 seconds after switching on or changing the lighting mode, a display appears above that provides the following information:
An interesting question just came from my reader Jan, the answer to which is apparently not so obvious:
Thanks for the interesting test. Can I charge the flashlight with my MacBook Pro power adapter? Or does it have too much power?
Of course, I also looked at the illumination of the flashlight. If you are out and about, you don't notice it, but with a white wall you can quickly see that the light is displayed somewhat squarely. This is due to the LED light element and has struck me several times with other flashlights.
Inside, however, there is a bright illuminated dot that represents the focus. The scattering of the light over a larger angle (160 ° radiation) is very practical if you shine outside to your dog 2 to 3 meters away and at the same time see where you are going.
The square illumination is not noticeable in practice. You can only see it in the photo because I illuminated a white wall of the same color.
If you want to use the flashlight to illuminate a larger area, you can still use the diffuser that Wuben offers as an accessory. You put this on top of the head of the C3 Wuben and thus get soft all-round lighting that is great for camping.
I haven't tried the diffuser because I don't want to use the flashlight for such purposes. I would rather look at products like that LE LED camping lantern that you hang up in the tent roof. This gives you a much more practical illumination than with a small flashlight with an attachment, which is always lying around somewhere in the tent.
For my purposes the purchase was the Wuben C3 definitely a good thing. The flashlight is brighter than I thought, but can still be regulated nicely. It fulfills my wishes for a waterproof case and a USB-C charging port and is still pretty handy.
I'm so excited about the little one that I'm considering getting another one that I put in my jacket pocket. Always using the iPhone when you need light is quite impractical.
If you are currently looking for an LED flashlight for on the go, for the car or simply for your jacket pocket, you can access this without hesitation. Huge buzzers on flashlights are no longer necessary to get a decent light output.
PS: Even if I praise the small Wuben C3, I like the big flashlights like that Olight X7R Marauder with 12.000 lumens nevertheless. At the moment I'm just missing the application and the right change to justify such a purchase. But who knows, maybe one day I'll be able to present this model to you in a test. I would find it exciting!
Jens has been running the blog since 2012. He appears as Sir Apfelot for his readers and helps them with problems of a technical nature. In his free time he drives electric unicycles, takes photos (preferably with his iPhone, of course), climbs around in the Hessian mountains or hikes with the family. His articles deal with Apple products, news from the world of drones or solutions for current bugs.
The page contains affiliate links / images: Amazon.de