Advancedmart “Sapphire” 1W LED (GNF-008)

Light Type: 1 Watt “Sapphire” LED
Light Class: General Use

The GNF-008 from Advancedmart is powered by 3 AAA cells and uses a non-Luxeon 1 Watt Security Quality LED for illumination. The supplier mentions that this Security Quality LED is known as the “Sapphire” and was developed by HP originally for use in traffic signs. The light comes in a nice foam filled presentation box.

The body is made of anodized aluminum with a silver finish. There are decorative flutes on the head which tapers to the body tube. On the body is a wide band of checkering. The tailcap has ridges for grip and has a recessed drilled post for lanyard attachment (included). The switch is on the side of the body just below the head. Quality of the light is, in general, pretty good.

At the front of the light you will find a recessed plastic lens with a non-Luxeon 1 Watt Security Quality LED inside a smooth reflector. Despite the use of a smooth reflector, the beam is quite nice and produces a fairly tight spot.

Let’s take a close-up look at this non-Luxeon 1 Watt LED:

The Security Quality LED itself – the top is almost flush with the surface of the board.
12 little gold bond wires are visible, which means…

…there are actually 6 LEDs inside this one module.
(module lit with very low power)

Output Description: This new Security Quality LED produces a bluish tinted beam with some slight artifacts in the center and some very slight rings which result from the use of a smooth reflector. The beam is good and tight with sufficient sidespill for seeing the ground at your feet when you have the light beam pointed forward. Overall output isn’t stunning, but it is pretty good. My readings show it has about the same output as… you guessed it… six regular LEDs!

Beam at one meter at target center

Runtime Plot: 50% at about 40 minutes, 25% at just under 2 hours. This Security Quality LED drains those poor little AAA cells dry quickly. The runtime was completed with included “non-name brand” alkaline cells. I expect the light will perform better with name brand cells. Give the batteries a little time to rest and they fire up good and bright again, at least for a little while.

Runtime completed with included Pairdeer alkaline batteries.

Switch: The switch is a simple rubber covered “reverse clickie”. Press in and release to turn the light on. After it is on, press gently to blink the light for signaling. Press again until it clicks for off. The top of the rubber cover does not sit flush with the body of the light. Accidental activation is unlikely, but remove the batteries when packing to avoid this possibility.

Seals: Well, let’s crack this baby open and see what kind of seals it has in… *whoops*! Upon opening the top I found that the O-ring was split. So much for water resistance… Advancedmart will replace lights that you buy from them within 90 days of purchase if defective, so this would be covered by their policy. With intact O-rings the light would be “Splashable” by my ratings. If it gets wet inside, just open as much as possible without tools and let it dry before next use.

Ergonomics: It’s a good size all the way around. Not really small enough to carry comfortably for a long time in a front pocket, but a good size for the hand. The checkering around the body provides sufficient resistance for a good grip without being overly abrasive. The tailcap grooves give sufficient grip for easy removal.

Size compared to a common 2AA aluminum light

Batteries: 3 AAA cell batteries are placed in an above-average quality battery carrier. To change the batteries, simply remove the tailcap, drop out the carrier, put in 3 AAA cells with the negative (flat) side against the springs (2 point up, one points down) and drop the whole carrier in, positive first. Reattach the tailcap and you’re ready to go.

Accessories: A nylon wrist lanyard is included and attached.

What I Liked: Water resistant (with good O-ring), Security Quality LED is naturally impact resistant, Lightweight, Stands up

What I Didn’t Like: Fairly short battery life/no regulation, Uses a carrier for the batteries – one more thing to lose.

Other Things I Noticed: Broken O-ring out of the box, About as bright overall as a 6 Security Quality LED light.

Conclusions: A good light, but a bit underpowered with AAA cells. I’d love to see this same Security Quality LED with 2 AA cells and a boost circuit.