Olight OLantern Mini

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Olight Mini Lantern Review: Olantern Mini

Olight O Lantern Mini specifications

Brand/modelOlight O-Lantern Mini
LEDN?A
Lumens150 lumens
Beam intensityN/A
Battery config.2000mAh built-in
MaterialPlastic
Modes3 + red
BlinkiesN/A
ReflectorN/A
WaterproofIPX4
Review dateJune 2021

Introduction:

Olight build high-end flashlights for a long time, and most of them are EDC and Tactical flashlights. But once in a while (especially in the last year or so) they produce other kinds of flashlights, including 2 Olanterns. I like the way they incorporate the letter O in many of their product names. O’pen, O’lantern, O’bulb etc. This review is about the Olantern Mini.

About a year ago, they first introduced the Olantern, a 360-lumen lantern with up to 80hours of runtime in its lowest mode. Now they built a smaller version and called it the Olantern Mini. It’s a 150-lumens little lantern, great for the kids.

Being a lantern, the review will be quite a bit shorter, because there are many things we can’t test or check.

Package quality.

Like all Olight products, the Olantern Mini arrived in a high-quality, nicely designed box. Inside the box you can find the following:

  • The Olight Olantern Mini
  • Long MCC3 charging cable (magnetic charge cable) of about 120cm / 4 ft
  • Manual

That’s not much, but it’s enough.

Flashlight in use

There’s only 1 switch on the lantern, which is used for power and switching modes. One interesting feature I noticed while testing is the ‘breathing’ indicator LED around the switch. Each time you touch the Olantern, the colored indicator LED will light up, to tell you the current battery charge status. This motion sensor seems to be pretty sensitive, which is good I guess, but when not in use, and not on a stable underground, it will continuously be lit, especially if you’re driving a car or RV. Just keep this in mind when you buy one. The sensor shouldn’t pull too many amps, though.

The switch has 2 functionalities: mode switching, and changing color from white to red.

There’s no strobe mode or anything.

The nonslip base of the Olantern is made of rubber and helps to keep the light stable, even on a wet surface. The handle can be used to carry or hang it up. There’s even an optional magnetic hook that will let you hang it on anything metal, even when there is no way to attach it to anything else.

Build Quality, and Warranty

Olight says it’s supposed to be waterproof of up to IPX4, which is supposed to protect from splashing water, no matter the direction. This is supposed to be enough for rain showers.

All parts seem to be glued together, but you can still open it up from the bottom. There are 3 screws that will give you access to the internals. I don’t recommend opening it up, but that’s the only way you can take a look inside.

The base of the Olantern is made of aluminum, and has a black matte coating. The lantern windows is made of plastic, and the center of the LED has a tornado shaped matte diffusor to make the beam as even as possible.

LED, Lens, Bezel, and Reflector

There’s no mention of the LED used in the Olantern Mini. I could open it up and take a look inside, but I have no desire to do so. To me, that’s not important unless somebody convinces me otherwise. At the heart of the lantern, there’s a tornado-shaped diffusor that makes the beam very smooth and equal. There are no hard shadows near the top or bottom of the beam either, but a gradual tapering into darkness.

There’s no bezel or reflector used, so I think I can finish this section pretty quickly.

Dimensions and size comparison

  • Height:  99.8 mm / 3.9 ”
  • Width base: 50 mm / 1.98 ”
  • Width with handle: 61 mm /  2.4”

Weight: 

  • Weight: 239.2 g / 8.44 oz

Olight Olantern size comparison

Size compared to other a 21700 battery.

Driver & User Interface:

The Olantern Mini has a fairly standard and easy to remember UI.

Available modes:

  • White:Low, Medium, High + Red

From OFF:

  • Single-click:  (to last used mode, mode memory)
  • Double click: Red (not memorized)
  • Press and hold <2sec: Low mode
  • Press and hold >2sec: Lock-out mode

From ON:

  • Single-click: turns off
  • Double click: change between White and Red
  • Triple-click: nothing
  • Press and hold: run through the 3 modes

Shortcuts:

  • To Turbo: none
  • To Moon: press and hold from off (release on time, otherwise you’ll activate lock-out mode)

Mode memory:

  • Yes, except for red light mode

Blinky modes menu:

  • None

Low battery warning:

  • The battery indicator shows the battery level:
    • Green: 70+%
    • Yellow: 30-70%
    • Red: below 30%
    • Blinks red: below 10%

Lock-out mode:

  • Yes, press and hold 3-4 seconds from off. Repeat to deactivate

PWM:

  • Not visible by eye

Batteries & Charging

Charge cable is about 4 feet / 120cm and fits underneath the base of the lantern. Charging takes about 3 hours from empty to full, even though charging is supposed to go at 1A. During charge the little LED indicator is red, and when almost finish it turns green. When it turns green, the battery isn’t fully charged yet. You can wait another 30 minutes before it is really full.

1A is the maximum charge speed, but at start and finish, the charge current is reduced. The battery is a 2000mAh 20350 battery, which you can only see when you open up the base. Once the battery breaks, replacing the battery is not difficult at all! It’s not soldered and can be taken out without any trouble. That is good to know.

Performance

Lumen measurements:

All output numbers are relative to my homemade Integrating Sphere. It is set up with an Extech SDL400 Lux Meter for measurements including a Kenko PRO1D ND-16 filter. The base measurement is done with a Convoy S2+ that is tested at 255 lumens.

ModeSpecsLumens @ 30 secLumens @ start
Low1516.6016.60
Med506464
High150 lumens177178

I inserted the whole lantern into the integrating sphere, so it’s not 100% accurate. It’s hard to use a calibration output because of this. So please, take these numbers with a grain of salt.

Parasitic drain:

  • There should be, but I don’t know how much.

Runtime:

The runtime test was done with the 50cm integrating sphere, including the Kenko Pro1D ND-16 filter and Extech SDL400 data logging Lux Meter.

This graph is really easy to understand. Just a continuously stable output of roughly 160+ lumens in High-mode for almost 4 hours. Medium runs for more than 11 hours at an output of roughly 64 lumens.

The manual shows 4 hours for high, 12 hours for medium. That is close to what I got. Low mode is supposed to run for 48 hours. I believe low mode could be used for probably 2 weeks, during the night. It’s not really enough light, but enough to see things nearby.

Throw Measurement

Measurements were taken indoors at 2 meters with a professional Hagner E4-X Lux Meter. And only measured white light. The Hagner can be set to 100th of a lux, so I was able to measure it at 2 meters.

ModeCandelaMetersYards
Low2.833.66
Med9.666.78
High28 cd11 meters11.57 yards

Since the light is directed in all directions, this is the distance it travels only 1 way, from the light source.

Beamshots

For the following beamshots I used a Canon EOS 5D Mk2 and a 50mm lens. manual settings: ISO1600, 1/30sec , F4, 5000K

It’s pretty hard to show this on camera unless I change the settings. This setting is also used for the smallest lights I review. So I hoped it would make a better comparison, but it doesn’t seem to be very useful beamshots. Beamshots at 5 meters away from the wall will not really tell the whole story of a lantern.

Disclaimer: This flashlight was sent to me for review at no cost by Olight. I have not been paid to review, nor have I been holding back on problems or defects.

Final Verdict

Pros

  1. Looks really cute
  2. Plenty of runtime on all modes
  3. Easy to carry and charge
  4. Battery indicator

Cons

  1. Would be nice if I could turn off the motion sensor

Explanation on star ratings:

1: Avoid: my phone flashlight would be a better choice – 2: Poor: significant defect or issues, much better options available at the same price – 3: Average: some defects or issues – 4: Good: recommended (minor issues) – 5: Great: highly recommended

Reviewer Marco
Author: Marco

5 stars: ★★★★★

After I received the Olight Obulb a few months ago, I was pretty excited to see the Olight Olantern mini in my review box. The Olantern Mini is a nice little lantern, and is a perfect gift for kids, to take on a camping trip.

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