Remember when you were a kid and you used to play flashlight tag in the backyard with your friends? How about having some friends sleep over, either in a tent or in your room and you had your trusty little three dollar plastic flashlight to light the way to nighttime shenanigan’s? I remember those days very well and was lucky enough to grow up in a neighborhood full of friends around my same age. When you’re a kid, flashlights are a dime a dozen and anything would work well, as long as the batteries help out for a while.
Over the years, flashlights have changed a lot thanks to technology. I never lost my love for flashlights and as LED’s became more of a household standard, I always had and still do have a decent LED light around the corner that I can grab and use whenever needed. With my current love for tactical flashlights being at its peak, I was very excited to accept the opportunity to review one of Olight’s newest and more popular models, the Warrior M22.
Upon receiving the review light, I was immediately and pleasantly surprised to see a rugged plastic case with a lot of useful information on the lid that contained all of the vital information on the Warrior M22. I can honestly admit that Olight is a new company to me, but right out of the box, I am impressed. The plastic carry case has a handle and two plastic clasps that when snapped shut will keep everything in place while on the go. The case has two protruding plastic feet on the bottom for easy stand-up, if needed. In all, I wouldn’t say this case is bomb-proof, but how often do you see a company actually provide you with a case to store your light and accessories? Just toss this in your truck or pack and you have everything needed.
Before I talk about the flashlight itself, I’d like to mention the accessories that came with the package. Again, Olight has impressed me with the variety of replacement parts and useful accessories to go along with the flashlight. First off, you have a detailed user manual that provides the average person just enough information to work the flashlights various modes, add batteries and use the accessories. If you want, you can also fill out the product warranty card and send that off to Olight. For the replacement parts, Olight has included three replacement o-rings and one silicone rubber boot (the bumper for operating the light). Nice to see Olight thought to include the things that will typically wear out the quickest on a tactical light!
The accessories are pretty nifty as well. I’m particularly pleased with the holster provided by Olight. The material itself is made from a heavy duty fabric that is for the most part rigid, with just enough give to take serious bumps and tumbles without taking any damage. Attached on either side is an elastic battery pouch that is a perfect for either two CR123A’s or a single 18650. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that having some extra batteries with you is a good thing! By the way, you also get two CR123A’s with this package so you can have the Warrior M22 up and running within minutes. Back to the holster, the flap closure is unique that it allows you to close the flap over the protruding tail of the flashlight, so you have access to the bumper button even while the unit is holstered. Along with that, the bottom of the holster has a round hole so that the light can actually be used while completely secured within the holster. I like this feature a lot and it’s something I haven’t seen before with a holster of this variety. A decent Velcro belt loop provides secure attachment to you or your gear. Since its Velcro, you can easily give it a good tug and have your holster dismounted in a flash. There is also a d-ring attached to the top of the belt loop for that extra carry option. Like I said, I like this holster!
Olight also gives you a nice silver lanyard that is long and sturdy. The lanyard has a push-button tension slider on it so you can adjust the size of the loop at will. The clip itself is also rather sturdy, so you won’t be worrying about losing your Warrior M22 if you are on the move and using the lanyard to secure the light to your body. I personally have never been a very big fan of long lanyards on my flashlight, opting to make shorter ones out of 550 paracord. It’s more of a personal preference, but that’s not meant to take anything away from stock lanyard. The last two things you get are a CR123A battery tube, meant to keep a tight grouping on your CR123’s while using them so that they don’t rattle around while the flashlight is in use. Finally, you also get a nice rubber coated lens diffuser. I found that when using the Warrior M22 in my house, tent, or any other tight space, using the diffuser makes a world of difference. By softening the output of the beam, you gain a more diffused beam. The white diffuser has a nice tight grip that’s to the rubber coating I mentioned and is my favorite thing to use, along with the holster.
As for the Warrior M22 itself, minus a few (VERY SMALL) nit-pick things, I am completely in love this this flashlight. It has become my go-to light when traveling, camping, hiking and basic all-around needs. First, I want to talk about the physical attributes of this light, then its performance. Fully assembled, the light itself is 144mm in length. Without batteries, it weights 146g, with batteries, 196g. Not the lightest tactical light on the market, but certainly not the heaviest as well. The body is made of an anti-scratch type III hard anodized aluminum body that has a checkered grip, which I found to work well with wet hands. A little past the midway point to the tail switch, you have what is called a cigar clip that is designed not only to help prevent the light from rolling on a flat surface, but also to assist in gripping the body. With the battery cap unscrewed, you have the option of removing not only the cigar clip, but also the pocket clip that comes attached to the light. The clip is nice and tight, plus it seems to also aid with gripping the light. All of the threads on the Warrior M22 are well lubricated; this should help lengthen the life of the unit while making it easy to perform any needed service. The actual wall thickness is 1.4mm on the thin side, and just over 2.1mm on the thicker side. The unit is waterproof at a reported IPx8 standard, meaning that it is suitable for continual submersion in water under conditions which are specified by the manufacturer (depths over 1 meter). The heat sink is large and with the raised rings around its head, provides great heat dispersion over time. Within the efficient smooth reflector, you have the newest Cree XM-L2 LED. This LED provides amazing output while conserving your battery at the same time. I’m still on the first set up CR123A batteries that I put in when I got the light and after several hours of hard use in different environments, it’s still going strong.
Performance is also a shining (see what I did there?) point that makes this a great flashlight to have on hand. You have three settings for lamination:
Low: 20 Lumens w/30 hours of runtime
Medium: 250 Lumens w/ 3 hours of runtime
High: 950 Lumens w/ 1 hour of runtime
Using this light around my house or on close quarters, I found that the low setting provided more than adequate lighting for all of my needs. Medium lit up the whole room with bring white light, high almost lit up the whole house. While solo camping in the woods, the higher settings really came in handy when I wanted to scan the area from a distance. The high setting literally allows you to see in the dark up to the length of about three football fields. Using this light in a tactical setting would make any officer happy with its performance, along with its strong body and runtime. The front stainless steel striking bezel is also a plus when law enforcement is needed.
A final mention about the function of the Warrior M22, the light will remember the last lumen setting you had it on during its previous use. You also have two different ways to cycle through the brightness setting. First, while the light is on, you can twist the head a little to one side, then back to the standard tightness to adjust the brightness, Second, all you have to do is lightly push the bump button down a few times fast. By doing this, you can cycle through the laminations and find the one that work for you in your current situation. I actually think this flashlight is smarter than a few people I know…
Overall, I love this light and have a hard time finding anything wrong, or negative to say about it. The only thing I would say is that this may not be the best option for you folks looking for an EDC light (Every Day Carry) due to its size and perhaps the weight. It’s really not meant to be an EDC flashlight, but that’s fine because it serves its primary role in a big way. Olight has done a great job with this flashlight and looking at their current lineup, I’m going to keep my eyes on them and feel they are making all the right moves to take the tactical light market by storm. We received our review light from Going Gear and they’re running for a crazy low price of only $129.99 there and I feel it’s worth every penny.
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