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These USB rechargeable work lights have evolved fast. They are bright and have a decent run time. This version has a USB power bank function too, which is useful, although it's only rated at 1A. The stand works well for aiming the light, and the general construction feels rugged, with firm bumpers on all edges.
It has two intensity settings, and unlike some others, there is no perceivable PWM flicker at the lower intensity setting.
The LEDs are powered directly from the lithium pack, so intensity will reduce as the battery voltage drops, but this is much preferable to the ones that bang out full intensity until they suddenly cut off.
The lithium pack contains two 2200mAh cells in parallel which is very acceptable. The design makes their replacement fairly easy if desired.
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#ElectronicsCreators

Let's take a look at the aldi work zone. Rechargeable led work light. This is really bright uh when you use it the first button setting it lights up fuel intensity. Second, button setting low intensity no sign; well, it's not that low uh, but no sign of strobing or flickering at all you're going to see a bit of flickering because of the scan of the camera, but there's no visible flickering off this at all.

I wonder if it's using resistors to switch the uh the light i've tried to press the button in various combinations holding it down. It doesn't have fancy sos modes, it's simply high medium off or a high low off. If you want to recharge it, you pop this little cover open as an o-ring around the outside to keep the watch out. It has a micro usb charge, port, an output for five volts up to one amp, not tested that a little button for looking at the battery status.

When you charge it, these also flash and build up, but the last one, even the charge currents dropped to about zero. It just stays flashing forever. It's not a really good indication of when it has finished charging the front. Has the led itself has one two: three, four: five: six: seven, eight nine ten, eleven twelve thirteen fourteen.

Fifty it's got thirteen uh thirty chips. You say in it: uh probably the standard flip chips under the phosphor, let's open it up, it claims to be 10 watts. I haven't tested that i suppose once could open. I could test that.

So let's take these screws out and see what it reveals it has. Incidentally, got the little usual clicky handle thing, it's pretty handy, it's pretty bright. It lasts a long time. The battery capacity is 4 400 milliamp hour, which makes me think if it's using 18650s it'll be two of the standard.

2 200 milliampere ones. It's using a dual pack of the 18650s. I was hoping this would have connectors on it, but it doesn't right. Tell you what um i shall pop the wires off.

Take the circuit board out and we'll take a look at it. One moment please: reverse engineering is complete and the unit has been put back together. It's not a bad little light. The circuitry is okay, although it does have quirks if i sound a bit different, maybe a little bit hoarse it's because i've just finished a two hour.

Patreon live stream and it just tends to leave my voice just a little bit coarser because a lot of talking during those streams, it was quite a good one. Quite enjoyable. Let's take a look at the uh through component side. First, we have the micro usb charging port, which is mounted on its own little extension circuit board, to bring it up to the front of the unit, so it can poke out at the same height as the output connector.

We have the output connector for the usb power bank functionality, which can put out five volts at one amp, and it has its two data pins tied together. Um we've got a button here for the power bank functionality just to basically show the power level when the main light isn't on. We have a electrolytic capacitor and we have the main button for the uh, the actual light itself, which is just a click on click. Well, it's not a click on it, so it's a simple click button tactile button, but with a rubber uh cover and front x, just they've used a bigger one, just for extra strength.

If we take a look at the circuit board underneath now, i could move this to the middle. It would actually be clear in the middle, wouldn't it be better in the middle, it would have been bent in the middle in the first place, but not to worry i've done it. Here is the other side, the circuit board, and it's quite busy. It is based on the charging and discharging of the lithium cell via a power bank ic, it's an sp4533.

What also took me a while was the initially the data sheet i brought for up for the sp4533 was a buck regulator, and i was thinking, that's not right, because it's having to boost the voltage up to uh run the five volt port here and it turns Out there were two chips, the same number, which does not help so there's this little uh boost inductor uh, the usual thing: it's getting, some filter capacitors all around it and it's basically putting the five volts over to there plus it's also sending signals to a universal Microcontroller, which is controlling the light itself, the microcontroller controlling the light, actually controls the the state of charge indicators and when you push the button, it's not signaling to this um. It gets two signals one to show when it is being powered from the little usb connector. You can see the back of that little satellite circuit board just sticking through here where it's been sorted and it signals to it that it's plugged into usb and therefore charging and then there is a another led output in this, which simply shows well. It's got two led outputs charging and discharging it's like the typical little ones.

You'd find like this. It's this sort of uh powerbank chip that just has the red led and the blue led very simple that we have done it, but the actual voltage monitoring is being done by this and all that chip is indicating to is that something is plugged in here and Then it kicks up as if you know it's detecting it discharging, and it shows the state of the batteries. The leds are driven by a dual mosfet package, but all the both mosfets are basically hooked in parallel and they've just got one resistor sort of feeding both the gates of those and they then power the leds via two resistor positions which just have zero ohm links. Okay, let's take a look at the circuit schematic they're schematic, so the first bit we'll start with here will be the power bank circuitry.

So the usb supply comes in and before it hits the chip. There's two things happen: there's a resistive divider which sends the charge signal over to the microcontroller, which is on the next page. That just tells it that the usb power supply is plugged in and the unit then knows that you know it will be charging it lights. The leds there's also a little filter, a 1.5 ohm resistor and a capacitor just to basically remove any noise from the noisy output switch wood power supplies just to provide greater stability for this chip.

The chip has the negative connection. It's interesting to note. It's an eight pin chip, but it's got nine connections. The negative connection is actually on the back.

If you were to look at the back of the chip, there's a pad in the back and that's not just for heat sinking purposes. That actually is the negative connection. As well, we also have a v cell connection connected to negative v cell. Is the voltage select if it's tight to negative the unit will stop charging at 4.2 volts? If it's just left floating, it goes up to 4.35 volts.

You think. Do it the other way around so that you know just as a precaution just because? Well, if that pin desoldered it would try and overcharge the cell. The unit then charges the battery via this connection and the battery has a little capacitor across it for stability. Um of the actual, like monitoring the voltage across it - and it also has a coil coming from the battery in to be switched to the zero volt rail by a internal mosfet or other transistor, and that is used to then boost the voltage up so that it Puts the output to these two smoothing capacitors and the usb output here, which uh again the data pins, are just linked across in that usb output at the same time, uh, when it's discharging when you've got a load on this, it does activate what is designed to Drive an led, it goes positive with respect to the zero volt rail and this instance.

It's going out to the discharge connection, the microcontroller, and then it's got 10k cooldown resistor. So all that tells the microcontroller is that the unit is running and it basically brings up the leds. Let's take a look at the uh at that point i should say 4.2 volts and zero. Volts goes out to the rest of the circuitry anything else to cover here.

No, that's it. It was quite a tricky circuit board to reverse engineer. I have to say it just it seemed quite complex and it was the position of the components was just made. It tricky for some reason, don't know why there are two capacitors and then put electrolytic the little one, that's on the other side of the board and then a decoupling capacitor local.

To that then there's further decoupling of the supply to the mystery microcontroller via a schottky diode and a capacitor. I guess that means that, ultimately, even if this is a very noisy rail, you'll always get a fairly constant voltage. It won't if the leds pull the current. The voltage down low, when that's say, pulsive modulating, which it does uh, then it's going to uh, make sure that uh, whatever peak voltage is there will charge that capacitor up, but not let that flow back through the short case.

So this gets a stable supply voltage, which is odd because it monitors the battery voltage via this network here, which is a 1k resistor and then a 750k, which is a very odd value, high value across the capacitor. I guess that's just to ensure that capacitor does discharge down and racked quite quickly to the battery. Not sure, but what's odd is that the voltage going in on this v sense pin is always going to be about 0.2 volts higher than the positive supply pin. Because of that shortcut, diode, that's strange.

There are two inputs from the previous circuit one showing that it's plugged into usb charger with that simple divider and then the other one from the power bank chip, which is just telling that it's discharging and it's the led driver. That's actually just driving an input to this, so it can power these leds. It powers leds just via a resistor power, led um, and it's got the two buttons one to basically show the current power status and one to actually toggle through the modes and the leds. The leds are switched by the dual mosfet i've just drawn one here, and it's a classic arrangement on the gate.

It's got a 10k pull-down resistor to make sure that whatever happens this, it's always stably pulled off and it's not going to sort of go to an intermediate state or power up. If this thing is a unstable anyway, but when it wants to turn the leds on it, takes this positive via this one key resistor and turns the mosfet on the two zero ohm resistors are, i guess, just placeholders for adjusting the power output. I think this circuit board is actually designed for different lights. I think it has, maybe even in the past the reason for the dual mosfet they may actually possibly have had the functionality that in another product it might have two sets of leds.

In this case, it's got one large cob with 30 leds. In parallel, it's got those two zero ohm links at four volts. I measured the current at 2.3 amps at the high mode and at the low mode it was one amp and that is more or less it there's not really much else to say about this. Damn it's so easy to describe it now, but you know, like reverse engineering, it takes so much longer.

Um. There are the leds here and there are. There are little resistors there's a little clicky button that makes those light up and there's the the big button across here that uh is used to uh activate the light. There's the dual mosfet with it's a pull down resistor and it's little turn on resistor.

Uh short key diode to the power supply for that chip and a little local decoupling, capacitor and there's a little voltage sensing network here. Everything else kind of belongs to uh. This chip, which uh has its little filter there, local decoupling capacitors, and then it's got a couple of resistors here to uh, regulate the voltage to the input pins for the charge and discharge, and that is quite a nice little light. It's chunky, it's robust.

It stands up. Well, i'm just going to uh hold on i'm just going to bring a focus there just to bring the focus to a more sensible level. Here is a box. It is focused to a more sensible level, but this stand is actually pretty good.

The light feels robust: it's got these rubbery bits that, on all the corners, it's designed to be dropped and bumped about the battery pack inside those little plastic fins that space it away to stop the lithium batteries come in contact with the hot heat sink in the Back of this not sure how hot it will get well, technically speaking, 2.3 amps about 3 volts, it's going to get about 6 watts hot. I think at full 4.2 volt charge. It could be the best part of 10 watts, but i don't think it actually is fully 10 watts, but the stand here it can stand as it is vertically, with the thing folded closed. But as you click this out, it does go to quite a range of angles.

It's quite smart. It can also be stood up like that for more accurate, aiming it's a neat little light, and it is bright. Look at that. It's really, you know and there's no flicker.

The positive modulation must happen at high enough frequency that i certainly even with a pen swipe your pen front, but you're going to see flicker in the camera, probably because of the frame frame rate. But i'm not seeing any flicker on this at all and usually swiping. Something fast like that would show that so it's quite smart, the batteries are a decent capacity and uh it's just all together. It seems quite nicely designed so there we go.

The workzone rechargeable led work, light from aldi's. It's really quite nice. I like this light. It's quite a smart one.


17 thoughts on “Inside an aldi rechargeable work light with schematic”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Cr125stin says:

    I bought a two pack of these at Menards that look very similar for $10!!!

  2. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars AnimationGoneWrong says:

    Nice job reverse-engineering that! Your knowledge of circuitry and circuit behavior is impressive. Glad I found your channel! I've been enjoying it a LOT.

  3. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Dave's Garage says:

    I'm going to imagine the light uses PWM for dimming but the duty cycle is so fast the camera doesn't see it. After all, in a circuit even 1000Hz would be trivial and would be invisible to a camera. Not everyone uses slow PWM rates like a set of old Cadillac tail lights! Resistive dimming would be fairly inefficient for heat…

  4. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Randy Carter says:

    I have a pair of those lights purchased from Costco. Mine has a magnet in the handle bail.

  5. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Brad Meek aka SilverTopFlyer says:

    By the way I heard you mention you have the flsun delta seems to be very nice 👍

  6. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars MrJozza65 says:

    I was able to pick one of these up recently from the bargain bin. I had the version from a couple of years back, which is in the same casing but yellow, and has the annoying flashing mode on the 3rd click of the button. Was very pleased to find out they got rid of that in the newer version! I found that if you unplug and replug the charger in when the 3rd light is flashing, it then shows all the LEDs lit correctly, a bit odd that it doesn't do that when charging.

  7. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Brad Meek aka SilverTopFlyer says:

    Greetings
    Hope all is well in the middle of the Irish Sea
    Got one of these for my dad who is almost blind he liked it but it broke down,I got it it back and took it to bits found lots of corrosion, as I worked I remember thinking Clive and Louis Rossmann would be proud right now…good day mate

  8. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Michael Athens says:

    I have a pair of work lights identical to those except the brand "Feit Electric" on them. They're great but there's a ton of unused room inside which could be full of batteries.

  9. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars games record says:

    Hi sir can you extract the schematic circuit of deepcool rgb converter of PC accessories please

  10. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars houseatwrongtown says:

    I've noticed some pleasantly robust stuff in the Aldi workzone range; always a nice surprise 😁

  11. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Philip Carpenter says:

    Yeah … I bought some of these so-called ‘worklights’ but when I put them on a job, they just sat there being all shiny and never did a stroke of work. Lazy sods. I docked their pay and told them to get their sh*t together or they’d be out of a job. B*stards. Then they all went out (on strike I presume) so I confiscated their charging leads and the idle g*ts just stood there looking sullen. Worklights? HAH! Shirklights, more like. B*stards.

  12. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars GetCarterCarPark says:

    I went into our local Aldi and the manager found the Workzone lamps they still had in stock. The stock label shows that these lamps went on offer at the beginning of March 2022, some 8 weeks ago, maybe how the online Aldi was out of stock of the offer of these Workzone lamps.
    Our local Aldi still had about 20 Workzone lamps in stock, so perhaps not that popular an item, despite how handy a lamp this is.
    I picked up two for around £7.50 ea.

    Thanks for the heads-up, Clive!

    K Watt.

  13. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Paul Stafford says:

    I have a very similar light. It runs on 4 AA batteries, or 2 18650. It has a battery compartment. Very bright and useful.

  14. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars No no says:

    I was distracted by breakfast when you showed the circuit details, but i wonder if the always-charging-LED indicator is due to the positioning of that Schottky diode preventing accurate sense of the battery charge.

  15. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Tim Gooding says:

    These have been available for a few years now. Have not found a bad review to be honest.

  16. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars A Human says:

    I got one of those – the USB port ripped off the board the second time I plugged it in to charge, and I'm no brute 😞

  17. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Bruce Goatly says:

    Nice light, but now unavailable online from Aldi, alas… Good video, though!

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