Involvement:Expert (understands the inner workings) - Ownership:more than 1 month
Solid. For "rugged" applications I would get a "real" brand-name light, but I take relatively good care of my lights and UltraFire has proven very reliable for me. I've had this light for a little over two years. Affordable. I think XR-E's may not be as good ($/lm) as they used to be, but this is still a great price for a decent Cree light. Bright 'n' tight. I have several other lights; this is my favorite XR-E. Very narrow and well-focused spot. Cool. Doesn't really get warm. Never had any heat problems.
The heat transfer to the case isn't very good. The LED/driver are a "drop-in". As mentioned though it keeps cool anyway. The strobe/SOS are pretty slow.
If you're looking for your first high-power LED light, this would probably be a great one. Would probably make a good gift too, to introduce a friend to these lights.
Would probably be better to go for an XP-G nowadays; probably doesn't cost much more. However this was my first 3W Cree light and it's still going strong, so I know it's really reliable. Even some MC-Es are pretty cheap. There are also some "underpowered" XM-L lights that are pretty cheap. I keep this light in my car all the time, charge the battery maybe once a year (don't even really need to). I know it's there when I need it!
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