Disclaimer: Lights were provided for by the manufacturer (Olight) for this review. No other compensation was provided.
Note: For ease of reading, henceforth the S1 Mini Baton Regular shall be termed “REG” and the S1 Mini Baton HCRI shall be termed “HCRI“.
Packaging & First Impressions
This is what the light will come with as shown below.
- Easiest way to differentiate the REG from HCRI would be to check their labelled Bezels and Tail Cap (REG is blank but HCRI has the ‘HCRI’ initials on the bottom).
- The threads and o-rings were mildly lubricated. Threads were rather smooth and clean (no gritty feeling).
- Clip is not reversible. However, the dual-direction clip enables deep pocket carry for bezel up/down carries & allows for attachment of the light to a cap for hands-free usage.
- The clip has sufficient tension to ensure that the light will stay clipped to any material to prevent the light from falling out.
- Lanyard provided comes with a very useful thin metal to help thread into the small lanyard hole of the pocket clip (see last picture of “Box Contents”).
- Magnetic tail cap is able to bear the light’s weight when attached horizontally and vertically (upside down) to a flat ferrous metallic surface.
- The side electronic switch requires a firm and deliberate press to activate and helps in preventing any unwanted activation of the light.
- Anodizing of the light is uniform without any missing specs, as expected from Olight.
- Battery compartment holds a AW 16340 battery with sufficient room for a slightly thicker battery width.
- Battery orientation is such that the negative end goes first into the light but there is reverse polarity protection inbuilt for those times one might forget.
Quick Overview (Manufacturer Specifications)
- Body Material: Black HAIII Aluminium
- Clip Material: Stainless Steel
- LED: XM-L2 [REG] / XP-G3 [HCRI]
- LED Specification: 70CRI 6500K [REG] / 90CRI 5500K [HCRI]
- Battery Format: 1 x 16340/RCR123A or 1 x CR123a ONLY
- Output & Runtime (with Olight RCR123A 3.7V/650mAh battery) [REG]:
- Moonlight (0.5 lumens / 15days)
- Low (15 lumens / 30h)
- Mid (60 lumens / 6h)
- High (330 lumens / 60min)
- Turbo (600 lumens / 1min) -> (330 lumens / 55min)
- Output & Runtime (with Olight RCR123A 3.7V/650mAh battery) [HCRI]:
- Moonlight (0.5 lumens / 15days)
- Low (12 lumens / 30h)
- Mid (50 lumens / 6h)
- High (250 lumens / 60min)
- Turbo (450 lumens / 1min) -> (250 lumens / 55min)
- Max Beam Distance: 100m [REG] / 70m [HCRI]
- Beam intensity: 2,500cd [REG] / 1,200cd [HCRI]
- Waterproofness: IPX-8 Standard
- Impact Resistance: 1.5m
- Dimension: 54mm (length) x 21mm (diameter)
- Weight: 43g (including batteries)
- Accessories Included:
- 1*Olight RCR123A 3.7V/650mAh battery (with built-in Micro-USB rechargeable port)
- 1*Micro-USB Cable
- MSRP: ~$50
UI (User Interface)
UI for this light is good for Every Day Carry (EDC) as it is relatively straightforward to use.
Switching ON and OFF is done by the side electronic switch on the light, so no momentary activation is possible.
- 1 Click – Last brightness level (MOONLIGHT, LOW and MID are memorized only; HIGH is memorized for 10 min & after which the light will be memorized as MID instead) is activated.
- 2 Click – Direct access to TURBO; 1 Click to switch OFF or HOLD down to switch modes.
- 3 (or more) Click – Direct access to STROBE; 1 Click to switch OFF or HOLD down to switch modes.
- HOLD (~3 sec) – Direct access to MOONLIGHT.
- HOLD (till MOONLIGHT is activated & deactivated) – LOCKOUT mode is enabled; HOLD (till MOONLIGHT is activated) – LOCKOUT is disabled.
- 1 Click – Light will switch OFF.
- 2 Click – Direct access to TURBO; 1 Click to switch OFF or hold down to switch modes.
- 3 (or more) Click – Direct access to STROBE; 1 Click to switch OFF or hold down to switch modes.
- HOLD – Mode change (light cycles through LOW, MID & HIGH only; MOONLIGHT & TURBO is not part of the sequence)
There is 1 blinky mode for this light (STROBE only) and no SOS modes.
For flashlights that are intended to use on a daily basis (EDC) and for possibly a long period of time, form factor is extremely important.
This light fits in a clenched small sized hand easily. Switching between overhand and underhand holding method is easy with its small form factor and (lack thereof) weight.
Olight has designed a special new knurling naming it “braided texture” for the new S1 Mini Baton series; which happen to be the smallest single CR123A light they have made to date as well. Aesthetically, the knurling is less aggressive and helps give the light a slimmer appearance. However, the light can be a little slippery with wet hands/gloves and could use slightly deeper grooves for the braided texture.
Even with the lanyard attached, it is able to tail-stand perfectly without the slightest wobble, due to the positioning of the lanyard attachment point.
With the provided Micro-USB Cable, the battery was charging at 0.31A which is close to the recommended 0.325A charging rate.
The RED indicator depicts charging in progress and GREEN indicator depicts charging has completed.
The LEDs are fully covered under the TIR optics but Olight’s decision to include a frosted TIR for the HCRI model is probably due to the incompatibility of the XP-G3 LED with the current gen TIR optics (i.e. producing unwanted artifacts in the beam).
For these lights, the spill, corona and hotspot is somewhat predictable due to the TIR (Total Internal Reflection) optics used. The REG light has a clear TIR as compared to the HCRI one which has a frosted TIR. As such, the REG light has a slightly thrower beam when compared to the HCRI light; but both still have predominantly floody beam patterns and are sufficient for most close range duty.
The REG beam has a wide circular hotspot with some slight corona and very little spill (almost all of the beam produced is focused into the hotspot). There are some slight rings in the beam when whitewall hunting but not visible in real world usage.
The HCRI beam has an even wider circular hotspot which blends almost entirely with the corona; and very little spill (almost all of the beam produced is focused into the hotspot). There are no visible rings in the beam when whitewall hunting and in real world usage.
All of the beamshots taken below are done so with the following camera settings (MOONLIGHT Mode: 3.2″, F3.5, ISO100, Daylight WB, LOW/MID Mode: 1″, F3.5, ISO100, Daylight WB and HIGH/TURBO Mode: 0.4″, F3.5, ISO100, Daylight WB). Some pictures have been adjusted slightly to depict as close as to what is seen in real life. The distance of the light from the door is 4.6m.
MOONLIGHT (0.5 lumens) [REG]:
LOW (15 lumens) [REG]:
MID (60 lumens) [REG]:
HIGH (400 lumens) [REG]:
TURBO (600 lumens) [REG]:
MOONLIGHT (0.5 lumens) [HCRI]:
LOW (12 lumens) [HCRI]:
MID (50 lumens) [HCRI]:
HIGH (300 lumens) [HCRI]:
TURBO (450 lumens) [HCRI]:
Mode (Output) Spacing
Mode spacing appears to be progressively brighter to the eye and the modes are well spaced enough to be able to know which mode one is currently in. With that in mind, TLR tend to view mode spacing as battery life indicators (amount of runtime left) rather than the specific output (lumens).
TLR is very happy to report that the MOONLIGHT mode is excellent for those bedtime night snack runs or with night-adjusted eyes, especially since there is a Direct Access option from OFF.
Tint & CRI
This actually is Olight’s first High CRI (Colour Rendering Index) light. While there is much to celebrate for, its tint has left much to be desired.
This is mainly due to the choice of emitter used as the XP-G3 has been known to be a rather problematic one with yellow-green tints in their beam profile. This can be seen in the corona portion of the beam profile and is noticeable in real world usage.
That said, the HCRI light has a tint of 5500K which is similar to sunlight (around Noon) and combined with the high CRI (90CRI), it helps colours pop without having the pinkish tint that most lower temperature CRI LEDs tend to have.
This light could have been the perfect first Hi CRI light if Olight had went with the more conventional Nichia High CRI LEDS (219B/219C).
The REG light has a Cool White (CW) tint of 6500K and a much lower CRI (70CRI).
In any case, the tint is a pleasant cool white one without any purple, green or blue hues.
The light was subjected to warm water submersion, followed by cold water submersion and left under room temperature running water tap whilst running on Turbo.
No signs of water intrusion in the head, switch or body was seen.
Electronic lockout and mechanical lockout are possible when needed, like during transportation in a bag.
A quarter turn (anti-clockwise) of the tail portion of the light will enable mechanical lockout.
See above “UI (User Interface)”, on how to activate and deactivate LOCKOUT.
When LOCKOUT mode is activated, any button presses will cause the red LED on the switch button to activate for about 6 sec.
The red LED indicator also doubles as a low battery indicator.
To sum up, we believe that the most important part of any review is if given the chance to purchase the same light for our own EDC or to gift to our loved ones out from one’s pocket (wallet), would we still do it?
For this light, it is a definite YES for the REG model and a possible YES for the HCRI model if the yellow-green tint is not an issue for your usage.
Olight hit a home run for this light’s UI with the Direct Access to the MOONLIGHT and TURBO from OFF as well as the mode changes being rather straightforward and intuitive. The addition of the dual-directional pocket clip, magnetic tail cap and included Micro-USB rechargeable RCR123A battery in such a tiny form factor helps increases the well-rounded usability as a main EDC light.
However, as mentioned earlier, we look forward to the day that Olight incorporates a Nichia High CRI LED (219B/219C) instead of the XP-G3 that is currently used for their HCRI model.
Perhaps a Titanium/Copper limited edition version with the said Nichia LED?
Here’s a bonus size comparison picture of the light next to TLR’s recently reviewed AAA light – the Fenix E01.
As with all gears, two is one and one is none.
The Lite Review
Where to Buy Links
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Olight S1 Mini Baton
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