Monday June 18, 2018

Olight S1R Baton (EN)

Olight S1R Baton Flashlight

 

When I was first asked to review S1R Baton flashlight from Olight by my friends from 365 Plus, I immediately said »Yes, I'll do it«. Then, I asked myself, how am I going to do this? First, I looked it up on the internet, to see, what I'm dealing with.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I became familiar with Olight from very positive reviews of their more mainstream tactical flaslights, some of them getting shot and still performing flawlesly. Yeah yeah, it was onlybuckshot; but, Will it blend? Most likely not.

Anyway, the reviews were good and a good year later I received as a gift Olight H15 headlamp, which I still use and love. That one convinced me of Olight quality, since before that I used several headlamps, that literally faded away after I tried H15.

I started thinking about what to write. Off course, technical details about it seem in order, but they can be looked up online by all you number crunchers. Let's say Olight managed to make a flaslight, that's really small, in a pocket form factor, that is tough and can cover its' user in a variety of different situations.
Ok, a short overview. Don't want to let the comparers down.

Max Output (lumens)

900

Low (lumens)

0.5

Max Run Time (hours)

15 days

Beam Distance

145 m

Peak Beam Intensity (candela units)

5250

Water Resistance

IPX8

Impact Resistance

2m

Head Diameter

0.83 in. /21mm

Length

2.6 in. / 64mm

Battery Type

CR123A

Weight (excl. Battery)

1.2700 oz. / 36g

 

There you go. That saved you a trip to 365 Plus website (if you really care that much, it's here -> http://www.365-plus.com/ ). It's not all just these numbers, there are several features, that were convincing even on paper, before I could try them out. First one is switching between different lumen levels and the ability of strobe action. The other one, pretty significant and not seen before (at least by me) is a magnetic charging cable, that hooks up to USB port (or charger). These two sort of set S1R apart from other flaslights I know (more on that later on).

 

So, after receiving the test unit, I started to think, what to write. I first wanted to compare it to some of my other flaslights and try to position it in a role. The lineup was as follows:

-Maglite Magcharger

-Pocketman aka X800 Shadowhawk (or any other number of names for China made flashlight using Cree XM-L T6)

-CrazyFire tactical flashlight (using the same model Cree XM-L T6 LED)

-UltraFire MXDL 3W (shorter variant, using CR123 batery)

 

 


Illustration 1: Package in it's purest form. Retail ready.

 The S1R comes in a neatly and tightly packed package, containing the flashlight, RCR123A battery, instruction manual, charging cable and a stylish coyote colored drawstring pouch.

  


Illustration 2: Package is tightly packed and you have to be crafty to put it back in nicely. But, once you open it and fire S1R up, I doubt you'll go that way.

  


Illustration 3: Contents of the retail package are plentiful and the suede pouch is a nice touch. But storing the flashlight in there puts it one step farther from being really useful.

 I've charged/loaded them all up and started to look for a good opportunity to test them. It presented itself quite soon, visiting my mother-in-law. The night that day was quite darkthem outside, in an area near the forrest. That gave me ranges, that were also at the very edge of Maglite Magcharger, that has a beam range of well over 400m. I was impressed by the S1R performance; that thing was able to light up the test area in a way, not really expected by something, that belongs on a key ring. After that, I put them all away and forgot for a while about writing the review.

 


Illustration 4: One of the competitors Ultrafire MXDL, the closest one in form. This one has no power switch and modes. Just twist it on and off.

  


Illustration 5: Pocketman, that wasn't. This picture does no justice to it's size. Supersized pockets time.

 First days, then weeks went on and as my inner voice started to remind me, to write something, I noticed something; S1R became my companion. I am a user of several storage locations in our building, as well as a garage nearby, used to stash away all the stuff, needed for active life of reenactor, home improvement enthusiast, airsofter, sport shooter, motorcycle rider... You probably know by now, that I have too many things to keep near my home (and maintain a happy sex life with my wife). So, they have to go (or I go, as she said). Beside that garage, our team has several other storage locations, that we use regularly and have no own power and/or lighting. So, I need some light, all the time. My usual flashlight was the PocketMan, that was tucked away in my backpack (that is with me all the time, at work or at the range or in the middle of Borderwar). Well, PocketMan has a rather unfortunate name, as there is no way, to carry it around in a pocket or on a person, unless one is working in security. It's more PouchMan, than PocketMan. Other thing, it's powered by 3x AAA batteries. I don't carry those in my backpack and it wasn't uncommon for me, to come to one of my stashes, pulling out PocketMan, turning it (or trying to) on, putting it back and taking out my phone to light the way. In short, PocketMan is appropriate for a night stand or fuse box (if you remember to keep an extra pack of AAA nearby).

S1R fits into watch pocket on jeans, as I found out fiddling with it one day. I put it in and it stayed there. I've been carrying with me for over a month and a half now and it's become an assistant in dark times. I've been using it on level 2, that is strong enough for making rooms bright and at the same time, I charge it once every two weeks, give or take a day. Charging is really painless, the magnetic connector is effortless to attach and it jumps into place as soon as it's put next to the back of the flashlight. Charging takes about two hours from fully emptied. The charging cable can be plugged into any port, be it on a laptop or a wall charger. For a busy professional and hobbyist there is no easier way to do it, that doesn't include a butler or body implants. Put in your gear a good powerbank, like the excellent Xiaomi 10000 mAh unit and you have enough light to get you through polar night. Since that lasts for around 28 days, it's more than enough if you're not too keen on using it's excellent turbo mode. It boosts the output of S1R to blinding 900 lumens for 30 seconds. I haven't had the need to use it so far, but it's mostly meant for rare occasions, when S1R is called to perform above and beyond the call of duty. It's 30 second limit (to protect it from overheating and draining the battery too fast) is too short for everything other than real emergency. Since I don't carry Magcharger most of my life, that's an alternative, I settle for.

I've tried the strobe mode too, but there's not much to say. It annoys the recipient of the beam and everyone else around, so it's usefull for that purpose. It's activated by triple pressing the switch.

About the switch; it was sometimes hard for me to find it quickly, but then I positioned the clip so, that it's placed next to it. Problem solved. Marko from 365 + has it positioned on the opposite side of the flashlight and that works to. Perhaps it's even better, since it's more reachable in case you have it clipped on to your baseball hat, or other piece of apparel.
Switch itself is responsive and well made. Feedback is excellent, but time will tell, how durable is rubber covering it. Warrant period is 3 years, so it should be enough to get through hell and back with it.

I went into this review expecting a good product and an interesting experience. I've never before reviewed a flashlight, which may be visible. What I've ended up with is a piece of equipment, that changed the way I do lots of daily tasks. If you're looking for a flashlight, that is always with you, feels weightless and at the same time you can rely on it to cover you in a range of scenarios, this one may be it. For me, it is.

 

Below are some photos of the three flashlights in action. I pointed them to the wall decoration and took a photo on same settings with a camera.

  


Illustration 6: Ultrafire MXDL; hot and light center, but not enough dispersion to light the wall properly for a nice picture.

 

 

 


Illustration 7: Pocketman, light circle, very pleasant to watch, but useful for a horror movie, since light is almost absent outside of the lens.

  


Illustration 8: Lowest power setting on S1R, with output of 0,5 lumens. The S1R can work 15 days on single charge with this setting.

  


Illustration 9: Medium setting. I use this one the most, since it's well suited for low and medium range use.

  


Illustration 10: High power setting. With this, we're talking medium to high range.

  


Illustration 11: Turbo mode. S1R has a 30 sec timer for this one, to prevent too much battery drain and overheating. For that period, you get a whopping 900 lumen output, 1800x stronger than the weakest one. This pic is merely a representation, since it looks similar to high power, but when you go above 100m range, difference more than obvious.

 

 

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