Sunwayman V11R Torch Review: Does It Down To The Lumen

A torch with 500 lumens is great for flagging down a search-and-rescue squad when you're lost in the woods. But when you're looking for a lost shoe as you sneak out of a friend's place at 1.45am, it's probably a little overkill. Fortunately, the Sunwayman V11R handles both situations with ease -- assuming you've already found your pants.

What Is It?

A compact, variable-intensity torch that fits in your fifth pocket.

Who's it For?

Hikers, campers, night-time drivers -- anyone in the dark.

Design

A 50,000-hour Cree XM-L U2 LED wrapped in an anodised aluminium alloy. The V11R is waterproof and rugged enough to withstand a pocket full of loose change.

Using It

An "Infinite Variable Output Switch" adjusts the beam intensity from 1 to 190 lumens. Install a Li-ion rechargeable CR123A, and it can briefly pump out a whopping 500 lumens for a short time.

The Best Part

The V11R is bright enough to replace a C-cell Maglite four times its size.

Tragic Flaw

The 500-lumen Turbo mode puts out enough heat in five minutes to start a game of Hot Potato.

This Is Weird...

Standing on its end, V11R can double as a candle.

Test Notes

  • Includes lanyard and removable belt clip.
  • It can take a standard AA (as opposed to the CR123A) if you use an included adaptor.
  • Its 130m maximum range and broad beam spread make the V11R more useful as a short-range flood than a focused long-distance spotlight.

Should You Buy It?

Yes. It's a great torch. The SOG Dark Energy 214 is fine as well, but the Sunwayman is better -- this is brighter, with a higher output and no rough finishes. But the most important difference is the Sunwayman's adjustable light output. The SOG model just had full power, 40 per cent and strobe -- this one is fully variable from a dim few lumens to that turbo-blast 500-lumen setting. The small stature and versatile, high-intensity output make the V11R ideal for both everyday use and as an emergency backup.

Sunwayman V11R Flashlight

• Dimensions: 84mm (L) x 23mm (D) • Bulb: Cree XM-L U2 LED • Battery type: AA (with adaptor), CR123A or rechargeable Li-ion CR123A • Duration: 35 hours at one lumen, 1.5 hours at 190 lumens, 25 minutes at 500 lumens • Effective range: 130m • Weight: 49g • Price: retails for around $120 in Australia