REVIEW – We all have too many of them, yet keep reading reviews and buying more. No, I’m not talking about knives or multi-tools, but you can be forgiven for thinking that. I’m talking about flashlights. These are three of the big four EDC gadgets we see here at the Gadgeteer. (I’d put gear bags and pens as a tie for number 4, but I’ve not seen the numbers.) Olight has been around for a number of years, with one simple goal: …“to put an Olight in as many people’s hands as possible. Why? Because we believe no one should be left in the dark; period.” Their latest release, the Olight Warrior 3 flashlight, is designed as a rugged tactical light that has long battery life, two ways to access that light, and a cool, bright light color for clear illumination. How well does it meet these goals? Let’s see.
What is it?
The Olight Warrior 3 is a rugged 4-level flashlight with a magnetic charging dock.
What’s in the box?
- Olight Warrior 3 flashlight with battery
- Spring steel clip
- Magnetic USB-A charge cable
- Nylon belt case
From company website
- New LED, Upgraded Output: Its cool white LED, paired with the TIR optic lens, delivers up to 2,300-lumen high output to reach far into the darkness to light up any environment
- Long Runtime Tactical Flashlight: Features up to 55-day runtime making this the perfect tactical light for hiking, camping, self-defense, and law enforcement with its exceptional performance!
- Visualized indicator interface: 4-level battery and brightness level indicators around the side switch to get a real-time lumen and battery level reminder at a glance
- Upgraded & Multi-Functional Tail Switch: The tail-cap is compatible with our new dual-button magnetic remote switch for professional users to control it as a WML, and the tail switch features a dual pressure design allowing to access Turbo or Strobe with a single press
Design and features
The Olight Warrior 3 flashlight is a fist-sized light that positions the switch under your thumb. It has a knurled center body and a spring steel clip that can spin around the body of the light so that the feel is how you prefer. You can even place the clip over the side button and just use the tail button if desired. (Being a military-grade light, this could keep the light from being inadvertently activated.) The tailpiece is a silver button that can be used to turn on the light with a half-press or access the penetrating Turbo brightness level with a single hard press/click. An accessory kit allows use as a Weapon Mounted Light (WML), and the tailpin is used to connect to that controller. (This was not sent for testing.)
The light is available in three colorways: Black, and two 8000 unit limited editions, Desert Camouflage (which I was sent) and Orange.
Without the WML controller, the lower three phases of the light can be accessed by pressing the rubberized switch near the lens. When lit, hold down the button to cycle through the levels and lift your thumb when the desired level is reached. When you turn the light off, it will retain that setting for the next time it is activated, unless you swap out the battery.
Around the thumb switch, there are two sets of four LEDs. The top set shows the battery level (25, 50, 75, and 100%), and the lower one shows the light intensity. As stated earlier Turbo mode can only be accessed via the tail button, which is a good thing. In that mode, you can feel the heat from the light at 6-8 inches from the lens. The unit can also be programmed to access a strobe feature via instructions in the user guide. With a max output of 2300 lumens and a max throw of 300 meters, you’ll be able to see things within your immediate area whether you’re camping, hiking, doing search & rescue, or engaged in tactical operations. With the low-power mode (still strong enough to read or cook or see your path by when camping or dog-walking), the battery will last up to 55 days of runtime. Charging it is a matter of clicking the metallic blue cap over the tail pin for a few hours. The LED “gas meter” around the side switch will let you know how much juice you have. And the customized 3.6V 5000 mAh 21700 battery is included. (That’s usually a pricey option with many lights.)
The Olight Warrior 3 flashlight has heft, and the points around the rim of the lens serves the dual purpose of personal protection and physical protection of the lens if dropped. Turning it on and changing light intensity is very easy and intuitive.
The nylon case allows for several different methods of attachment: snapping onto a MOLLE system or threading through a belt. The buckle is secured with webbing so that it doesn’t slide around. The hard plastic clip is very secure, yet easy to unlatch.
What I like
- Magnetic charger, with status light
- Two-way clip
- Easy brightness cycling
What I’d change
If you’re a true Gadgeteer, this will be a tough question: How many flashlights can you touch from where you are right now? If it’s less than two, we may need to talk about your dedication to the cause. If it’s more than twenty, we may need an intervention. But I’m guessing for most folks reading this site, there are 4-5 high-quality flashlights within 10 feet of your person most of the time. I’ve got one by each door, one or two in my bag, and a few on my desk. That doesn’t count in my vehicle, on the nightstand, randomly sitting in the den, etc. Let’s potentially add another, OK? The Olight Warrior 3 flashlight is one tough cookie, and the magnetic charging and protection from heat-ray-induced damage in Turbo mode are both positives in my book.