PHOTON FREEDOM FUSION



Photon Freedom Fusion, retail $57.95 (www.photonlight.com/fusion/index.html)
Manufactured by LRI (www.photonlight.com)
Buy one here.
Last updated 05-28-09





The Photon Freedom Fusion is a combination LED "lighting device" that features eight LEDs, a microcontroller, switching power supply, gold plated electrical contacts, and comfortable headband all in one stylish, compact unit. The Freedom Fusion is powered by three common "AA" cells, and it comes in a GE "Xenoy" plastic body.

The above photograph shows just one of the Freedom Fusion's configurations.


 SIZE



The Freedom Fusion can be used in any of three "primary" or "intended" modes, and has numerous additional uses.

Mode 1 is the headlamp. The Freedom Fusion is affixed to the head or a helmet using a comfortable, 3-point elastic strap. The strap is wide and comfortable, adjustable to fit your head or helmet size, and elastic to give a snug, secure fit. The light head with the LEDs & switch in it can be adjusted to a number of preset positions; these all lock in place so the light will not change positions until you want it to.
A soft rubber cowling or hood around the light's head prevents any spill light from getting in your eyes, and makes the head easy to grip when changing positions or switch settings.


The new Freedom Fusion affixed to a flashlight tester's head.

Mode 2 is as an ordinary handheld flashlight. The entire headband elastic assembly just pops off, so it doesn't get in your way. When you remove the headband, you don't lose your personal adjustment, so the next time you need it, it stays exactly the same way it was when you last used it.

Mode 3 is as a table lamp. The triangular shape allows the unit to sit solidly on any reasonably flat surface, and the adjustable head allows you to direct the light exactly where you need it - onto a specific target, or up at the ceiling for a more diffuse illumination.

Additionally, the Freedom Fusion can be used as a tent light, a map light in your car, or pretty much for any other situation requiring light.

All six of the white LEDs in the array are the usual 20 Nichias; the other two are 3mm red LEDs.

One of the best parts is that light can be dimmed and has four flashing modes. Here is a list of the light's modes:
    WHITE LED MODES:
  • Variable Intensity Modes - White LEDs: Press the switch and then release it to get highest mode. Press and hold with the Freedom Fusion turned on to dim the LEDs to the brightness you wish. Release the button when the LEDs are at the brightness you want them to be.

    Continuing to hold the button down after the "lowest level reached" blink allows you to access these blink modes:

  • Slow Beacon: All eight of the LEDs flash on and off approximately once every four seconds (0.25Hz). The Freedom Fusion can operate for days in this mode.

  • Medium Beacon: The six white LEDs flash on and off at an approximately 2Hz rate.

  • Fast Beacon: The six white LEDs flash on and off at an approximately 10Hz rate.

  • SOS: The six white LEDs flash the international SOS signal until the batteries die, until you either change modes or turn it off.


    RED LED MODES:
  • Variable Intensity Modes - Red LEDs: While the Freedom Fusion is turned off, press the switch and then hold. The two red LEDs will come on in the dimmest setting, and brighten up as you continue holding the button. Release the button when the LEDs are at the brightness you want them to be.

    Continuing to hold the button down after the "highest level reached" blink allows you to access these blink modes:

  • Slow Beacon: The red LEDs flash on and off approximately once every four seconds (0.25Hz). The Freedom Fusion can operate for days in this mode.

  • Medium Beacon: The red LEDs flash on and off at an approximately 2Hz rate.

  • Fast Beacon: The red LEDs flash on and off at an approximately 10Hz rate.

  • SOS: The red LEDs flash the international SOS signal until the batteries die, until you either change modes or turn it off.

Once the Freedom Fusion is in the mode you want, just release the button.

The switch button is impregnated with a glow-in-the-dark compound, so you can find it in the dark if it had previously (recently) been exposed to light.

The Freedom Fusion comes with a nylon drawstring carrying pouch that holds the Fusion, its accessories, and a few sets of extra batteries if you need them.


To change the batteries in your Freedom Fusion, locate the two circular gold contacts on one end of that triangular piece - this is the battery lid. Open the battery lid by unlatching the latch, and then swinging the door up on its hinges. Use a standard screwdriver blade or a butterknife to gently pry open the latch if necessary. Dump out the dead batteries if present.

Hold the unit so the apex (point) of the triangle faces you. Insert two of the AA cells toward the rear (forming the 'base' of the triangle) button-end up, and insert the last battery (in the apex of the triangle) button-end down, as you see in the picture.

Battery orientation
Correct battery orientation.

Swing the lid shut, and press firmly until you feel it snap in place, and you're back in business.
Polarity markings are embossed on the inside of the battery lid should you need to change batteries while away from my website. ;)

The Freedom Fusion is equipped with reverse-polarity protection, so you won't let all of the magic smoke out if you install the batteries incorrectly.




Photograph of the Freedom Fusion's business-end, showing eight LEDs and the reflector.

The Fusion is built to take whatever punishment you can administer to it.

Testing by the manufacturer showed it could survive a 30 foot drop onto concrete; my own less brutal tests shows it just bounces around.

If you do ever smash the lens, it is easily replaceable. No need to throw out a perfectly good flashlight because it has a broken lens. This is how it *should* be.

Both the headband system and the battery lid are secured by very stiff and substantial latches; neither were shown to fly apart when the sample was abused. It's almost built too well - I needed to enlist the aid of a small screwdriver to pry both the headband bracket and the battery lid off their latches. Any tool will work - a ballpoint pen, pocket knife, dime, teaspoon, or any relatively thin, sturdy object.



Beam photograph (white LEDs) at ~12".
Intensities range from 1,560mcd to 111,400mcd.



Beam photograph (red LEDs) at ~12".
Intensities range from {unmeasurable}mcd to 4,200mcd.

All measurements were taken on a Meterman LM631 light meter.


Spectrographic plot
Spectrographic analysis of the LEDs (white) in this product.


Spectrographic plot
Spectrographic analysis of the LEDs (red) in this product.


Spectrographic plot
Spectrographic analysis of the LEDs (white) in this product.


Spectrographic plot
Spectrographic analysis of the LEDs (red) in this product.
Newer spectrometer software & settings used for the two above spectra.
USB2000 spectrometer graciously donated by P.L.



TEST NOTES:
Test unit was sent by B.A. of LRI on 10-20-04, and was received on 11-05-04.


UPDATE: 02-01-05
Two times now in the last two weeks, I woke up to find the red LEDs running at not much below 100% intensity. I know it wasn't at 100% intensity because I could observe flickering when the unit was waved around rapidly.
Now, I realise there is a chance that I turned it on myself and then forgot, but I really don't think this is the case. Not both times anyway.


PROS:
Light has multiple uses depending on user's needs.
Uses cheap & common batteries.
Potential for long battery life
Lens is replaceable if gouged up or shattered.


CONS:
Light has a slightly front-heavy feeling to it


    MANUFACTURER: LRI
    PRODUCT TYPE: Multipurpose lighting device
    LAMP TYPE: LED
    No. OF LAMPS: 8 (6x5mm white, 2x3mm red)
    BEAM TYPE: Narrow flood; hotspot with dimmer corona
    SWITCH TYPE: Rubberised pushbutton on/off/mode change on illuminator head
    BEZEL: Rubber; LEDs and reflector protected by plastic window
    BATTERY: 3xAA cells
    CURRENT CONSUMPTION: Unknown/unable to measure
    WATER RESISTANT: Yes
    SUBMERSIBLE: No, but should survive accidental dunking
    ACCESSORIES: Headband, belt clip, carrying pouch, batteries
    WARRANTY: Full lifetime, excluding intentional abuse

    PRODUCT RATING:

    Star RatingStar Rating





Photon Freedom Fusion * www.photonlight.com







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