The Orb Raw NS is a very special light made by the
same person who first brought us the innovative Fliklite.
It's so small it doesn't even run on CR2 batteries,
instead relying upon a tiny 1/2 AA Li-Ion rechargeable
cell for power. It is made of nickel-sliver, has two
light output levels and includes three glowing locators
embedded in the body to help you find the light in the
dark. It is so nicely made, it could be considered almost
a piece of jewelry instead of a flashlight.
Body: The body of the Orb Raw NS
is made of a metal called "Nickel-Silver"
which is a
silver-white alloy containing copper and zinc and nickel.
Heavier than aluminum, the alloy used is tough, corrosion
resistant, and has slightly gold undertones.
The head of the light has three bands while the battery
tube has the name of the light engraved on the side,
"NS" on the tailcap, and the tail is machined
for the attachment of a lanyard or tiny split ring.
Around the body tube you will also find 3 Gaseous Tritium
Light Sources (GTLS) embedded in the metal, provided
that you paid for that option (additional £6.)
The GTLS are tiny glass capsules coated on the inside
with a green phosphorescent compound and filled with
a tiny amount of tritium gas. The gas makes the phosphor
glow without the need for exposure to light or an external
power source. They are guaranteed to last 10 years.
The glow is enough to easily locate the light in a dark
environment. This is the same technology as used in
some watches and compasses used by the military. The
buyer may choose either green, blue, or pink glow tubes.
Overall, the light is tiny. It is also
the smallest Luxeon light reviewed thus far. So how
small is it? Here's a comparison shot vs. a CR2 powered
Ion and a 123A powered Fenix P1...
Bezel/Head: At the front of the light we see
the mineral glass lens, aluminum reflector and the K2
Luxeon LED. The K2 emitter is optional and costs an
additional £6. A Luxeon TWAJ is the standard emitter.
Output: The white light produced by the LED
in this unit is very white. No significant tinting is
detectable when compared against a near sunlight-white
source. There are two selectable levels of output. Twist
the bezel for low, twist slightly more for high. The
amount of light it produces on high is stunning. You
would never believe that this tiny torch is capable
of producing so much light.
All throw readings are in Lux
at one meter. The numbers in parenthesis are for comparison
in the Comparison
Beam at one meter at target center
Runtime Plot: Being able to produce so much
light comes with a price... 13 minutes runtime to 50%
output on high. Really not too bad for a 300mAh 1/2
AA Lithium-Ion rechargeable cell! On low you should
see around 6 hours of run before 50%. Suffice to say
that high mode should be used with care. Plus the little
critter gets hot quick in high mode.
completed with included rechargeable battery. More information
on runtime plots is available HERE.
completed with rechargeable battery. More information
on runtime plots is available HERE.
Switch: The head is the switch. Twist for on
Seals / Water Resistance: There is an O-ring
seal in front of the lens and around the body tube.
This allows the light to survive a mild splashing.
If it gets wet inside, just disassemble as much a possible
without tools and let it dry before using again.
Ergonomics: I'll let the picture do the talking...
It's almost the same length as just the head of the
Size compared to a common 2AA aluminum light
Batteries: A single 1/2 AA Lithium Ion cell
powers the light. This is recharged using a Nano charger
and three spacing magnets to make it fit in the charger.
CR2 batteries will not fit in the flashlight.
To change out the batteries: unscrew the body, tip
the light and drop out the old cell...
SPROING, clatter!!!! Whoops!
I suppose this is the place where I should warn you,
the parts inside the Orb Raw NS are NOT held in place.
The first time I went to change out the battery, all
of the internal parts came out and went skidding across
our linoleum floor. Even the lens. Of course, if I
had completely read the directions first, I would
have known that it was supposed to do this because
of the modular design. Duh...
Let's try again...
Once you have all the pieces back in place (follow
the directions, orientation is important!), to change
out the batteries hold the light horizontally and
unscrew the body tube and gently slide out the old
cell. While still keeping both halves of the light
horizontal, put a charged cell in the light observing
proper polarity. Reattach the battery tube and you're
ready to go.
This loose fitting assembly is the reason for the light
only being splashproof and is also a good reason to
only change the battery under controlled conditions
while held close over a flat surface.
Nano charger in packaging with battery inserted for
Size comparison - 1/2 AA Li-Ion, CR2, 123A cells
Accessories: Included with the base price is
the Orb Raw NS, TWAJ LED, Nano charger, 14250 battery,
and 2-Stage Switch. A tiny little split ring and lobster
claw clip are also included. Yes, that's them sitting
on the tip of my index finger.
The glow capsules, K2 Luxeon, and additional
batteries are all optional. If you already have a Nano
charger, you can exclude that from your purchase.
What I Liked: Splashproof, Unique
color/material, Glow indicators, High and low output,
Rechargeable, Very small, Very well made
What I Didn't Like: Pieces fall
out if tipped too much when the case is open.
Picky Little Things: None
Conclusions: The Orb Raw NS is
beautiful and very functional. It's diminutive size
disguises what turns out to be a surprisingly powerful
flashlight. The two output levels allow for normal output
use for a very long time with an occasional burst of
very bright light when needed. It gives all appearances
of being intended as a gentleman's (or ladies) pocket
light, but hard use probably won't hurt this light much
either. I've been
playing with errr... testing
it for over a week now and I'm hooked.