Imalent is well known for their incredibly bright flashlights, such as the Imalent MS18, which is the brightest flashlight in the world. Imalent features heavily on my list of the best high power flashlights so it’s no surprise that they’ve just released another.

At 34,000 lumens Imalent MS08 is the brightest flashlight they’ve produced that fits in a jacket pocket. Imalent call this an EDC flashlight – it’s a bit big for a trouser pocket but could be carried every day if you had the need.

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The Imalent MS08 uses 8 CREE XHP70.2 LEDs. This is the same configuration as the Acebeam X50 and results in similar specs. The Imalent has an extra trick up its sleeve though: active cooling that allows the light to sustain 10,000 lumens. This is through the use of 2 fans that are part of a strong plastic shell.

Imalent MS08 specs

Here’s Imalent’s official specs for the MS08

MS08 official specs
Lumens34,000 lm
High efficient circuit, can be constantly on at 10,000 lumens
Throw738m
Intensity136000 cd
WaterproofIPX8 (2 meters submersible)
Impact resistant1m
LEDs8 * CREE XHP70.2 LEDs
Batteries3 * 21700 cells included
Run timeUp to 30 hours
ModesTurbo / High II/ High I/ Middle II / Middle I / Middle Low / Low
Size74mm(length)*51mm(head diameter)*125.5mm(body diameter)
Weight651g (battery included)
MaterialAerospace-grade aluminum alloy body,wear-resistant Type III hard-anodized surface treatment
Reflector and lensAluminum OP reflector. Combination of toughened ultra-clear mineral and anti-reflective coating glass
Fan heat shieldBuilt-in thermal control module, and equipped with a fan powered heat shield,will automatically adjust the brightness output according to the working state and outer temperature, keep using comfortably.

What’s in the box?

All Imalent’s high end flashlights come in quality boxes with reflective blue lettering. The MS08 package is no different.

Inside the box you get:

  • Imalent MS08 flashlight
  • 3 batteries (21700 li-ion button top cells, rated at 4000mAh each)
  • Nylon holster
  • 2 magnetic USB charging cables (1 for the light and 1 for the fan shell)
  • Manual
  • 2 spare O-rings
  • A spare screw for the fan shell

Everyday use

The Imalent MS08 is fairly standard for a soda can / soup can flashlight. Without the fan shell it’s almost identical to the Imalent R60C.

With the fan shell on too it’s a bit chubbier.

Fan shell / case

The fan enclosure is the main new feature of the Imalent MS08. This is made of a hard plastic and contains 2 small fans and the electronics to power them. The case says “RMS108” on the outside. I expect this same case will be used with upcoming lights from Imalent.

The fan shell includes:

  • 2 fans on either side near the top
  • Switch, magnetic charging and LED status indicator on the bottom
  • A battery inside, at the bottom

Being plastic, the case may break if you drop it. Though it should also serve to protect the light, similar to a phone case.

The fans start off slow and get higher pitch and louder. They’re not too loud when outdoors but are a bit louder than my laptop fans when it’s doing heavy CPU work.

Shell attachment

The shell is attached by a single screw. The screw goes into a recess about 1.5mm deep in the light near the switch and isn’t actually screwed in. This results in a slight wobble if you shake the light. This seems reliable and holds the weight of the light fine, though I’d have preferred 2 screws so there wasn’t a single point of failure. Imalent includes a spare screw too.

The fan case has lots of holes for the air to move around. These also serve to help grip the case.

When the MS08 is in place then the 2 green indicator lights on the flashlight are visible under the fans.

Fan switch and user interface

The switch on the bottom turns the fans on or off. There’s no different power modes or lockout function. Electronic lockout would have been a welcome addition, as I can imagine the fan turning on accidentally at times.

Fan charging and indicator LED

The fan charges with the same magnetic USB cable as the main light. In fact Imalent have used this same magnetic charger for a while now and it seems to work well.

There’s 2 USB cables in the box, so you can charge both the light and the fan at the same time.

When the fans are on, the green indicator LED comes on to show there’s enough battery.

Charging the fan pulls up to 0.38A and the indicator light turns red.

LEDs

The number in Imalent’s MS series lights normally shows the number of LEDs. In this case there’s 8 of them. Imalent have used XHP70.2 LEDs, which is the same LED that their MS18 – the world’s brightest flashlight uses.

Size, weight and comparison

Without the fan case:

  • Length: 123.0 mm
  • Head diameter 73.9mm
  • Body diameter 50.9mm
  • Weight: 651g (battery included)

With the fan case:

  • Length: 134.5mm
  • Head diameter: 79.8mm
  • Body diameter: 59.9mm
  • Weight: 784g

High power flashlight size comparison

From left to right:

Imalent MS08 vs Acebeam X50

Here’s the Imalent MS08 next to the Acebeam X50. These are both high power soda can flashlights that use 8 CREE XHP70.2 LEDs and are powered by 3 21700 cells.

Here’s some of the differences. To the eye, both lights are pretty much identical on turbo.

Imalent MS08Acebeam X50
Lumens (claimed)34,000 (cool white)40,000 (cool white) 38,000 (neutral white)
Throw (claimed)738m800m
HeatIncludes fan shieldGets hot but there’s a handle included
Battery3 replaceable 21700 cells includedBattery pack included (that uses 3 21700 cells)
ChargingMagnetic USBUSB-C charging and power bank functionality
DriverDirect drive with PWMConstant current

Imalent MS08 vs Imalent R60C

The Imalent MS08 looks to have been based the on their R60C.

MS08R60C
LEDs8 * XH70.26 * SST70
Lumens34,00018,000
Throw738m1038m

These lights have very similar designs but the reflectors and LEDs make them completely different in output, with the MS08 giving a wall of light and the R60C being much more directional.

In fact when I first got the MS08, I thought the R60C might fit in the fan case. Unfortunately it doesn’t quite fit.

Imalent R60C not quite fitting in the MS08’s fan case

User Interface

Click on, click off, hold to change brightness.

That’s all you need to know for the MS08. There’s a few extra shortcuts:

  • Double click for turbo (while on or off)
  • 3 clicks from off for low
  • 4 clicks for lockout / unlock
  • Hold while off for 3 seconds to turn on/off the indicator light
  • Double click from turbo for strobe

Cells and charging

The Imalent MS08 comes with 3 Imalent-branded cells. These are button top 21700 cells and you can order spares from Imalent. Any other set of 3 high drain button top should work fine, such as Samsung 30T, 40T, Molicel P42A or Vapcell K40.

The MS08 charges at up to 2A. Mine drew 1.7A for most of the charge cycle, tailing off at the end. You can charge it with or without the shell on but it’s easier with it on.

The fan has its own charging point, using the same connector.

Performance

Lumen measurements

I was getting around 26,000 lumens at turn on after a few attempts. After clearning the contacts around the positive end of the cells and the threads, then tightening the threads really tightly I managed to get almost 29,000 lumens. This is close but slightly under the 32,000 I manged to record on the Acebeam X50. In reality they both step down very quickly and you won’t notice a difference.

Note that measurements from my home made integrating sphere could easily be +/- 10%.

ModeLumens specLumens measured
Low300348
Middle Low700595
Middle 120001766
Middle 250004330
High10,0009461
Turbo34,00028,860 @ 0s
24,383 @ 30s

Runtimes

Here’s Imalent’s run time specs:

ModeRun timeLumens
Low30 h300
Middle low19 h700
Middle 14 h 50 min2000
Middle 21 h 30 min5000
High60 min10,000
Turbo54 min34,000

I measured the MS08 with and without the fan, to see what the difference would be:

Imalent MS08 run time (full)
Imalent MS08 run time (first 20 minutes)

The Imalent MS08 sustains its turbo output for about 30 seconds before dropping down to about 7500 lumens. Indoors at around 21℃:

  • Without the fan it dropped to about 2000 lumens after 9 minutes
  • With the fan it stayed above 6000 lumens for 17 minutes, before dropping to 4000 lumens

Outdoors I’d expect the light would stay above 5000 lumens for at least half an hour.

If you’re using turbo or high modes then the fan definitely helps keep the brightness up. It also stops your hands getting too hot.

Conclusion

I love lights like this. The Imalent MS08 puts out an incredible amount of light and is fun to use. It’s also much more pocketable than something like the Imalent MS18 and will happily fit in a jacket pocket.

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One thing I like about the Imalent MS08 is that it takes regular button top 21700 cells. This means you can keep spares or replace them after a few years.

It doesn’t quite meet Imalent’s specs but nor does the Acebeam X50. In reality I don’t think you’re going to notice any difference between the 2, especially as they drop down from turbo so quickly. The Acebeam has a better driver but the Imalent’s fan shell keeps the light above 5000 lumens for longer.

My recommendation for which to buy? Both!

The MS08 was provided at no cost by Imalent for an impartial review.

Join the Conversation

3 Comments

  1. Thanks for the nice review. How do you think they have achieved direct drive with 3 batteries and 8 6V or 12V leds? Curious.

    Like

    1. Good question. I’m really not sure. There’s definitely PWM noticeable with a camera. The cells are in parallel so they must be using a boost driver too. Boost driver plus PWM seems odd though.

      Like

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