Nitecore D10 SP R2 Torch Review

Nitecore D10 SP R2 Torch
The Nitecore D10 SP R2 is a compact, high output 'pocket' torch which uses a single AA battery. It features a military grade aluminium alloy case and a impact-resistant optical lens with dual-coating technique and 'orange peel' reflector. It uses a single high-output LED.

It features an innovative 'smart piston drive' system, which replaces the conventional click switch found in most lights. The 'user interface' provides 3 levels of brightness up to a maximum of 130 lumens. Simply switch on the light and press and hold the Smart Piston Drive button to cycle through 130, 35 and 2 lumens output.

D10 SP also features hidden strobe and SOS modes if required, and a user operated electronic safety lock-out feature to prevent accidental activation. The Nitecore D10 SP can also be used as a single level twist switch light (memorizes pre set light level) by simply tightening the head for on / loosening the head for off.

Another useful feature is the D10 SP's broad voltage circuit, which supports either an alkaline or Ni-mh AA battery or a 3.7v 14500 Li-ion rechargeable cell.

In The Box

In the box you get:

  • Nitecore D10 R2
  • Manual
  • Braided paracord lanyard
  • Spare O-ring
  • AA battery

In Use

eBay handle bar mount
We bought a cheap (~£6) rubber handlebar mount on eBay for this torch. It makes an excellent front light for cycling as an emergency backup or simply to provide more light for off-road cycling. It's very light and secure. It's also easy to fix and remove using the Velcro straps.

Whilst discussing cycle lights with my brother at Christmas, he mentioned his Hope One LED cycle light and I thought I'd do a quick comparison on performance. The Hope One is a very well regarded front cycle light and uses three AA batteries. Whilst it will provide longer running time, in terms of light output, there really isn't any difference between the Hope One and our Nitecore D10 SP R2.

Having used this torch for a while now, we've found that you can tell when the battery is close to needing replacing. When the difference between the middle and highest output settings start getting harder to tell apart, it is time to replace the AA battery.


This is an impressive torch and in most cases is the only torch you need. We like its compact dimensions and light weight. Because it is so small and light, you can keep it in your pocket. It is bright enough for most purposes too in our view.

The fact that it uses readily available AA batteries is a huge plus. Even partly used batteries can be used to provide high outputs, due to its clever LED driver circuit. It really does seem able to extract every last bit of power from an AA battery.


October 2014

Still going stong and still the only torch I need :-) This torch goes with me everywhere from taking the dustbins out, to skiing trips in Austria and summer holidays in exotic locations.

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