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INOVA X1



Inova X1, retail $20.95 (http://store.yahoo.com/meridiantactical/x1spban.html)
Manufactured by Inova (www.inovalight.com/)
You can also buy it at THELEDLIGHT.COM
Last updated 02-04-08





The Inova X1 is the baby brother (or sister) to Inova's X5 and X5T flashlights. Instead of 5 LEDs that use their own optics to form the beam, the X1 has a single LED and an antireflective coated (AR) glass lens to focus that LED's beam into a virtually perfect circle of light with no spill or waste light off to the sides. And instead of expensive and hard to find lithium CR123A camera cells, the X1 uses a single AA cell for power, and you can find those almost any time, anywhere.

The Inova X1 also features an anodized brushed aluminum housing, and has a hole in the tailcap which you can use to affix a lanyard of your choosing. A stainless steel ring is present on the front of the flashlight to help protect the lens, and a Duracell Ultra AA cell is included, already installed in the flashlight for you.


 SIZE



To use the new Inova X1, first you'll need to get it out of its packaging. Slitting the package open with a sharp knife or razor blade along one side of the flashlight or the other ought to do the trick here. The X1 comes ready to use right away, because the battery is already installed.

Press down on the rubber tail button to turn the light on in momentary mode. Release to turn the X1 off.

Twist the tailcap (as if tightening) it to turn the X1 on in continuous (hands-free) mode. The light will then stay on without any further intervention on your part. Twist the tailcap counterclockwise (as if loosening it) approximately 1/8 of a turn to turn it off.

To engage the LOTC (Lock Out Tailcap) function, unscrew the tailcap approximately 1/2 of a turn more, and the light will not activate itself and waste the battery when packed away in a box, backpack, or camping bag.



The Inova X1 feeds from an ordinary AA cell. A Duracell Ultra AA is already installed when you buy the flashlight; however you'll eventually need to change it.

Unscrew and remove the tailcap of the Inova X1. Set that aside, because you'll need it later. Remove the dead battery from the barrel, and dispose of or recycle it as you see fit.

Slide a new AA cell in the barrel, button-end (+) positive first. (The flat (-) negative end should be facing outward). Screw the tailcap back on, and back it off about 1/8 of a turn when the X1 springs to life.

There, done with that. Fun, ya!!!

Flashlight draws 231mA off the included battery; the DMM was set on the 2A scale to help minimise shunt resistance error.




The above picture shows the business end of the Inova X1; the dust you see on the lens does not come with the flashlight, so don't expect to receive any with it when you buy yours. ;-)

The Inova X1 appears to be very well built like its big brothers, the X5 and X5T. It is made primarily of anodized aluminum, with a stainless steel ring on the light's business end and a rubber button on the light's tailcap. There appears to be another stainless steel (SS) ring around the switch rubber, but I'm not 100% certain about this. I'm pretty sure it's SS, but I can't be entirely positively certainly sure here.

When the tailcap was removed, the flashlight was relieved of its battery, and that dreadful suction test was performed, there was no air leakage. So at least the bezel (head) won't admit water. There's an O-ring on the barrel under the tailcap when the tailcap is screwed on, so it probably won't leak there, either. So I don't think you have to worry about using it in the rain or snow, and falls into shallow water shouldn't kill it either.

The lens appears to be made of glass, is convex (magnifying) and is antireflective (AR) coated on at least one side. The lens is recessed for protection, so the usual "drag and wipe" technique for cleaning lenses won't work here. I'm not certain how you should clean this lens to keep it pristine and keep the AR coating intact...guess I'll cross that bridge when I get to it.
A Sima LensPen is probably appropriate to use here, but since my X1's lens isn't dirty (as of 07-01-04), I can't say how well it will work.

The Inova X1 has an octagonal shape to it due to 8 longitudinal flutes moulded or machined into its body. These flutes do not serve well as an anti-roll mechanism though, because both the head and the tail of the light are round, so if you set the X1 on a slanted surface, it could easily roll away. If you have a lanyard or split ring fitted to it though, the lanyard or split ring itself will function as an anti-roll device, and the X1 would be less likely to roll and get away from you.
The tailcap is knurled (texturised), so you can turn the X1 on and off even if your hands are cold, wet, or oily.

The X1 cannot be stood on its tail to serve as a room light, but if you need that capability, you can stand it up inside a roll of toilet paper.

The beam of the X1 is virtually perfectly circular, with a thin green and blue "fringe" right around the perimeter. This is a perfectly normal occurrance when focusing any white LED with a lens like this, and does not in any way indicate a problem with the flashlight.
There is essentially no spill or waste light off to the sides, so if you need that spill light for navigation or something, the X1 is probably not the light you want to grab. But it says right on the package, and it was meant to be, a SPOTlight, so it's not like you weren't warned about this behaviour before you bought this flashlight.



Beam photograph at ~12".
Measures 83,000mcd on a Meterman LM631 light meter.
The high reading stems from the optic in the X1, not the LED.


Spectrographic plot
Spectrographic analysis of the UV LED in this flashlight.



Spectrographic plot
Spectrographic analysis of the white LED in this flashlight.


ProMetric analysis
Beam cross-sectional analysis.
Image made using the ProMetric System by Radiant Imaging.




TEST NOTES:
Light was purchased from Meridian Tactical in late October 2003, and was just received today (Halloween 2003).


This picture compares the Inova X1 and X5T in size.
The X1 is the little guy on the left.

The item # (for the titanium finish white LED model shown on this page) is X1MT-WT.

The Inova X1 comes with either a titanium finish or a jet black finish, and is available with LED colors of white, red, green, and blue. The link at the top of this page where I bought mine is that of the titanium finish model; use this link to choose the black finish model.

UPDATE: 11-01-03

Here's the entire package the Inova X1 comes in.
Some users report that they receive a holster with their X1, and that the package can be opened easily and without knives or other sharp instruments, while other users report they receive no holster and the package has to be cut open like mine.
So, this is either a regional variation, or a time differential at work here.


UPDATE: 12-07-04
I purchased a UV Inova X1 on Ebay not long ago, and received it yesterday.
Here are photographs of it and its beam at 12":




The white and magenta colors you see in this photograph do not actually exist.
Digital cameras do not render colors in these short wavelengths correctly.

It uses the same AA cell as the other color X1s.
Current usage measures 118.7mA on the included Duracell Ultra.


PROS:
Durable construction
Watertight and weather-resistant at very minimum
Uses inexpensive, common battery type
Very good brightness for a 1-cell flashlight


CONS:
Beam may be too narrow for some users (there goes half the star)
Lack of spill light might also be of concern to some users (and there goes the other half)


    MANUFACTURER: Emissive Energy
    PRODUCT TYPE: Small LED flashlight
    LAMP TYPE: LED
    No. OF LAMPS: 1
    BEAM TYPE: Circular with sharp perimeter
    SWITCH TYPE: 3-way tailcap (momemtary, constant on, LOTC)
    BEZEL: Glass lens protected by steel collar
    BATTERY: 1x AA cell
    CURRENT CONSUMPTION: 231mA
    WATER RESISTANT: Yes
    SUBMERSIBLE: TBA
    ACCESSORIES: Battery
    SIZE: 3.9" L 0.72" D
    WARRANTY: Limited lifetime

    PRODUCT RATING:

    Star Rating





Inova X1 * www.inovalight.com/







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