If you recall last April, I reviewed the Weltool W3 “Featherless Arrow” flashlight. It uses a new type of illumination technology called Laser Excited Phosphor (LEP). At that time Acebeam had a competing product called the W10. On paper, the W10 was a little bit better than the Weltool W3. 250 lumens and 250k candela. Well, they have made a bigger more powerful LEP light. The W30 is a long range LEP illuminator.
W30: A Long Range LEP Illuminator
Just like the W3, the W30 is LEP technology. A blue laser hits yellow phosphor to create white light. For some reason, this light is extremely collimated. Meaning it mostly shines in the same direction. So while the W30 is 500 lumens, candela rating is off the charts at 1,450,000 candela. Yep, 1.45 million candela. It is sort of a fat laser but it’s not technically a laser since the laser is not projected out the front. With such a high candela rating it throws the light very far. The specs of the W30 boast 2400m throw. Here are the specs from Illumn.com where I bought the light.
- BLOS (Beyond-Line-Of-Sight) White Laser based flashlight
- Max 500 lumens brightness output
- Max beam distance up to 2408 meters (7,900 feet)
- Depth of diving rated to 100 meters
- Standard tripod socket compatibility
- Included 21700 5100mAH rechargeable battery
Emitter: White LEP (Max output power 12W) (6500K Cool White)
Modes: 500 lumens
Runtime: 21700 (1h 45m)
Maximum Beam Distance: 2408m (7,900 ft)
Maximum Peak Beam Intensity: 1,450,000cd
Beam angle: 1.8 degrees
Water Resistance: 100meters
Battery Type: 1 x 21700 / 1 x 18650
Length: 199.1mm (7.84″)
Head Diameter: 61mm (2.4″)
Tube Diameter: 25.4mm (1.00″)
Weight: 248g (8.75oz excluding battery)
The light shape resembles a SureFire M3. Wide flared bezel and narrow flashlight body. However, instead of being powered by 3x CR123 like the SureFire M3, the W30 long range LEP illuminator is powered by a single 21700 li-ion rechargeable battery. It is a little bit longer and wider than an 18650. The 21700 battery produces the same amount of voltage but has a higher capacity than your run of the mill 18650.
Since most battery rechargers, like the Nitecore series bay chargers, only accommodate 18650s, the Acebeam 21700 has a micro USB port built right into it. So just plug in a cable and plug it into the wall.
The Acebeam W30 does come with a spacer that allows you to use 18650 as an alternate power source. Just know that the run time is reduced.
The W3 comes with a special dual-purpose recharging cable. It allows you to use the 21700 battery as an emergency power bank to charge devices like your phone.
The W30 does come with a red screw-in filter.
You can get the W30 in three different color temperatures. I opted for the 6500K since it seems brighter to me.
W30 Beam Is Super Narrow
Due to the LEP technology the W30 beam is extremely collimated. Look at the photos above. Only several feet away and the beam is the size of a grapefruit. This makes the light not suitable as an EDC light. It is good at lighting up objects farther away though.
Here is the W30 bouncing off a glass window at 2:30pm in the afternoon. It was overcast.
The W30 actually works well with a scope as you saw in the video before. My friends and I were able to illuminate a steel target 1,100 yards away. And we made hits on steel at 1,000 yards away using only the Acebeam W30 to help illuminate the target.
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Ignore the smoke being lit up by the @acebeam.official #acebeamw30 instead watch the ground under neath the beam of light. You can see the #223tracer from @venturamunitions light up the ground as @vvicmed hits 1000 yards in the dark. @kythes just before I say “yeah!” You can hear the subtle ding of the round hitting the steel.
Mounting The W30
Since the beam pattern is so tight, you have to aim the W30 beam into view of the scope if you want to light up your target. The W30 does not have any internal adjustments for windage and elevation, I found a Chinese 30mm adjustable mount that fits the W30 tailcap. The Laspur mount physically shifts the light body to help aim the narrow beam so your scope can pick it up.
The W30 has a threaded hole in the side of the handle. This allows you to attach the W30 onto a tripod. You can now aim the W30 downrange at your target.
The Laspur mount acts like an Elcan optic. The mount has windage and elevation adjustments.
As I said earlier the beam pattern is very small. In fact, according to Acebeam it only measures 5.4 feet at 1,000 yards. However, I did not notice this. Take a look at the photo below. Those targets are 1,000 yards away and the beam is much wider than 5 feet. Acebeam claims the light can be thrown 2,400 yards and I have found it hard to see past 1,000 yards. My friends and I were able to see a white steel target as long as the light was not attached to the gun but rather off body and mounted away from the shooter.
Another issue is the fact that the beam can be seen shining through the air like a giant light saber. While it is fine for shooting targets, it is not exactly stealthy for hunting. Price-wise the W30 is similarly priced to the Weltool W3. Illumn.com sells the W30 for $289. I found the W30 to be useful for shooting long range without needing to use night vision. Below is a photo of what we were able to see at night using the W30 as a long range illuminator. Ignore the white reflection at the bottom left of the scope. The three white targets are 1,000 yards, 1,025 yards, and 1,100 yards. With the use of the W30, we were able to hit the 1,000-yard target at night using a Desert Tech bullpup chambered in .223.
The beam is too narrow so you will have to aim the beam with a special mount or mount the W30 to a small tripod. Once you can aim the tight LEP beam then you can see your targets downrange at night even at 1,000 yards away.
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