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  • Stephen Knight

Flashlight Review: Skilhunt EC200S (Dual Channel)

Updated: Jun 30

This review is of the Skilhunt EC200S flashlight/torch. This 2,100 lumen light is one of many dual channel flashlight options in Skilhunt's EC200S range, which include the 18650 format EC200S, EC200S RED, EC200S UV, plus 18350 format EC200S-Mini, EC200S-Mini RED, and EC200S-Mini UV.


Disclaimer


The EC200S was sent to me by Skilhunt for an honest review. This flashlight is reviewed from the perspective of a night/light painting photographer and flashlight enthusiast.



Skilhunt EC200S Flashlight
Skilhunt EC200S Flashlight

Construction and Design


The Skilhunt EC200S is a compact dual channel flashlight, which uses a rechargeable 18650 Li-ion battery. The light is available in multiple body colour versions (Carbon Black, or Gun Metal Grey). This dual channel light, has three LEDs. The primary channel has options for cool or neutral white LEDs - Cree XP-G4 cool white 6500k (tested light), or high CRI Nichia 519A neutral white 4500K. The secondary channel is a high CRI Nichia 519A warm white 3000K. The light is operated by a side switch, which allows for easy switching between cool/neutral white and warm white output.


The EC200S has a head diameter of 25mm, length of 102mm, and weight of 48.5g (excluding battery). This is very compact for an 18650 class flashlight. The light has a side switch, and USB-C internal charging which I much prefer over Skilhunt's previous magnetic charging. The light has an IPX-8 rating, and should thus be weatherproof, as well impact resistent to 1m. Depending on the chosen configuration, the price varies between US$89.37 to US$115.48 (at the time of writing).



The Skilhunt EC200S arrived in ESKTE (written as ESK T3) branded packaging. ESKTE is the brand name that Skilhunt is gradually migrating to. The package also included an optional 18650 Li-ion battery (inside the light), USB-C charging cable, side clip, lanyard, instructions, spare O-rings, pouch, and optional Amber filter.


The light comes with an optional 3500mAh 18650 Li-ion battery. This is a few mm longer than unprotected 18650s, so I presume it is a protected battery. This can either be charged in a dedicated Li-ion charger, or with the light's internal charging system. The light is charged via a USB-C charging port on the opposite side of the light to the side e-switch. Charging time was approximately 150 minutes, and the charging rate is at a maximum of 2A. Battery charge terminated within the acceptable range at 4.18V.


For my light painting and night photographer readers - for creating light trails. the EC200S is not compatible with light painting systems due to the side switch. However, has is very useful for the illumination aspect of night and urbex photography as it allows for illumination with either cool/neutral white and warm white/amber light from the same torch. This is often a better option than having to use 2 seperate torches. I could not find any compatible diffusers. The light can be tripod mounted using a Small Rig Super Clamp.


Skilhunt EC200S Packaging
Skilhunt EC200S Packaging

Some of the accessories for the Skilhunt EC200S
Some of the accessories for the Skilhunt EC200S

The Skilhunt EC200S comes with a 3500mAh 18650 Li-ion battery.
The Skilhunt EC200S comes with a 3500mAh 18650 Li-ion battery.

The Skilhunt EC200S has internal USB-C charging
The Skilhunt EC200S has internal USB-C charging

User Interface


The Skilhunt EC200S uses a side e-switch for the UI. The below diagram is better than a thousand words.

Skilhunt EC200S User Interface. Source: Skilhunt
Skilhunt EC200S User Interface. Source: Skilhunt

Various clicking combinations will enter one of 5 mode groups from off - Low (hold 0.5s), Main (single click), Turbo (double click), Strobe (triple click), and Warm (click and hold 0.5s). Each of these mode groups has last mode memory, which is excellent. As long as you can remember the click combinations, this user interface is very flexible. Once in a mode group, a hold will cycle through the different brightness modes within that group. The exception is strobe mode which requires a double click for cycling. Strobe modes are an alternating frequency strobe (I prefer constant frequency), SOS, and beacon mode. 4 clicks locks out the light, with optional location mode (flashing red light on the side switch).


The side switch is less sensitive than the MiX-7, which is an improvement. The light can be electronically or mechanically locked out, and there is low voltage warning and cut off. Indicators in the side switch indicate charging status and battery discharge status: Constant Blue Indicator: 100%-80% , Blinks Blue Indicator: 80%-50%, Constant Red Indicator: 50%-20% , Blinks Red Indicator: 20%-0.


The Skilhunt EC200S has a single side e-switch.
The Skilhunt EC200S has a single side e-switch.


Beam, Output, and Runtime


The Skilhunt EC200S uses three emitters:

  1. Dual cool/neutral white LEDs - Cree XP-G4 6500K 70CRI (tested), or Nichia 519A 95CRI/R9080 4500K.

  2. Single warm white LED - Nichia 519A 95CRI/R9080 3000K.

The other lights in EC200S series replace the warm white LED with Red, or UV LEDs.


The LEDs are all placed in reflectors. The cool/neutral white LED pair, have one orange peel reflector and one smooth reflector. This creates a general purpose beam profile with a combination of flood and throw. The single warm white LED is placed in an orange peel reflector, for a floody beam profile with larger hotspot and wider spill beam. There is more cd or throw per lumen for the cool/neutral white LEDs than the warm LED. I would prefer the two channels to be more balanced.


It is great to see Skilhunt offer a choice of more efficient 6500K LEDs to maximise lumens, or high CRI 4500k to maximise colour rendering of illuminated objects. As a night photographer, I usually recommend selecting the Nichia 519A R9080 4500K version for better colour rendering of illuminated objects. However, the cool white XP-G4 6500K version works really well for contrasting againt the warm white LED for night and urbex photography, and the reason I chose the cool white version for this review. Personally I would prefer high CRI Nichia 519A 5700K and 2700K LEDs for the two channel options.

Claimed Brightness/Runtimes:

  • Turbo 1 - 2100lm XP-G4 / 1400lm 519A / 211mins (step-down to High 1 after 1 minute).

  • Turbo 2 - 1150lm XP-G4 / 750lm 519A / 213mins (step-down to High 1 after 3 minutes).

  • High 1 - 635lm XP-G4 / 410lm 519A / 210mins (tested to be 220mins).

  • Medium 1 - 220lm XP-G4 / 140lm 519A / 10hr.

  • Medium 2 - 65lm XP-G4 / 40lm 519A / 32hr.

  • Low 1 - 6lm XP-G4 / 4lm 519A / 100h.

  • Low 2 - 1lm XP-G4 / 0.6lm 519A / runtime not stated.

  • Warm 1 - 570lm / 183 min (step-down to 310lm after 3 minutes)

  • Warm 2 - 115lm / 10hr.

  • Warm 3 - 30lm / 25hr.

  • Warm 4 - 3lm / 95hr.

Note: the EC200S "Mini" versions with 18350 batteries have the same brightness, but approximately 1/3 the runtime.


Claimed Peak Beam Intensity:

  • Turbo 1 - 6800cd (164m) XP-G4 / 3000cd (109m) 519A.

  • Warm 1 - 850cd (58m).


Brightness (lumens) and runtimes with the Nichia 519A emitter were tested to be within +/-10% of the manufacturers specification on Turbo 1 and High 1 mode. I have always find Skilhunt to be very accurate in their brightness and runtime claims. I tested peak beam intensity on Turbo 1 to be 8727cd, and Warm 1 to be 1136cd, though my Opple Light Master 3 Pro does tend to overestimate by approx. 25%. For the light's compact size, the maximum and sustained brightness are quite impressive.


The runtimes are also pretty decent. I would personally recommend the 18650 versions of the EC200 over the 18350 "mini" versions due to the far more useful runtimes for camping, exploring, and hiking.


Hotspot correlated colour temperature (CCT), colour rending index (CRI Ra), and tint/DUV were measured using an Opple Light Master 3 Pro:

  • Turbo 1 (Cree XP-G4 6500K) - CCT 6175K, CRI 70.5 Ra CRI, Tint +0.0051 DUV.

  • High 1 (Cree XP-G4 6500K) - CCT 5849K, CRI 69.1 Ra CRI, Tint +0.0078 DUV.

  • Low 2 (Cree XP-G4 6500K) - CCT 5337K, CRI 68.2 Ra CRI, Tint +0.0094 DUV

  • Warm 1 (Nichia 519A 3000K) - CCT 2951K, CRI 97.4 Ra, Tint -0.0009 DUV.


As expected the cool white XP-G4 6500K has relatively low 70 CRI, though CRI is slightly better than most cool white LEDs. There is a slight green tint at all CCTs, which becomes more green at lower output levels. If you want a neutral tint main beam, consider the high CRI 4500K option. The warm LED, is as expected from a Nichia 519A, very high CRI, and an almost perfectly neutral tint.


The light can optionally come with a Amber colour filter. Amber light is less attractive to some insects, and is also useful for night photography/light painting illumination purposes. Unfortunately the instructions don't explain how to insert the Amber filter. However, this YouTube shorts video shows how to fit the filter. https://www.youtube.com/shorts/_pirHZRK6j8

The Amber beam is really lovely, and still has some colour rendering (not monochromatic)


No Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) was detected visually, or by my phone camera.


Skilhunt EC200S Flashlight Optics
Skilhunt EC200S Flashlight Optics

Skilhunt EC200S with Amber filter installed
Skilhunt EC200S with Amber filter installed

Skilhunt EC200S Cool White Beam Profile
Skilhunt EC200S Cool White Beam Profile

Skilhunt EC200S Warm White Beam Profile
Skilhunt EC200S Warm White Beam Profile

Light painting with the Skilhunt EC200S
Light painting with the Skilhunt EC200S - warm white from left, cool white from right.

Conclusion


Positives:

  • Dual channel cool/neutral white and warm white in one light can be very useful.

  • Choice of neutral white high CRI, or cool white for max output.

  • Decent maximum and sustained brightness for the light's size.

  • Flexible user interface.

  • Last mode memory for all mode groups.

  • Integrated USB-C charging.

  • Moonlight mode.

  • Optional amber filter.

  • Very good build quality.

Negatives:.

  • I would prefer high CRI 5700K/2700K channels.

  • I would prefer more consistency in beam profile between cool/neutral and warm LEDs.


Whilst there are plenty of dual channel lights on the market, the Skilhunt EC200S series does this with high build quality, less gimmicks, a flexible user interface, and options for warm white, red, or UV secondary emitters. The EC200S a very useful flashlight for those who like the ability to switch between cool/neutral and warm white/amber light - useful for night and urbex photography, night hikes, and camping.




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