Olight Olantern Stretch

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Olight OLantern Stretch review

Olight OLantern Stretch specifications

Brand & ModelOlight OLantern Stretch
Flashlight categoryCamping lantern
LEDUnknown
Max. output500 lumens
Max. beam distance20 meters
Max. beam intensity120 cd
Battery config.Built in battery pack
Onboard chargingUSB-C
Main modes2 (ramping)
BlinkiesNone
WaterproofIPX5
Review publication dateMay 2024

Review intro:

There’s a few things in this world I can absolutely, positively count on: Death, taxes, and Olight’s obsession over product redesign. There hasn’t been a light-producing device in their lineup that hasn’t gone under the redesign knife, but that’s a good thing, since it keeps things fresh, up to date, and competitive. Plus, why not? Take our review subject for today. This one’s an old favorite of mine, and its predecessor has been my companion on several outings and lighting up my living spaces with its soft, pleasant glow.

The Olight O Lantern Classic Pro 2, when introduced in 2022, married the classic camping lantern design with modern electronics, batteries, and the latest in LED tech. I absolutely loved it! The nostalgic design really took me back to my days as a lad on campouts. Since then, Olight has introduced a smaller version, and a version with a Bluetooth speaker, no less. Now there’s another one, The Olantern Stretch, and it’s brilliant with some really cool design features (the ‘Stretch’ bit), improved output, and a larger battery. I’ve already reviewed the OLantern Classic Pro II, so some of that content will be present here. I’m excited to head back down memory lane.

What’s in the package

The OLantern Stretch comes in the typically nice Olight packaging. It’s an exceptionally organic white on white with an intricate lattice of spacers and holders on the inside supporting and providing protection to the O Lantern inside. The accessories are housed in a flat box on the top of the O Lantern.

  • Olight OLantern Stretch
  • USB C to C charging cable
  • User manual

The O Lantern is ready to go out of the box and doesn’t need to be recharged, but a top up charge wouldn’t hurt anything. It was really nice to see a proper C to C cable so you can use the power bank, but an A to C cable would have been nice too! Overall, this is a ready to use setup and typical of what I expect from Olight.

Flashlight in use, Build Quality, and Warranty

The Olantern Stretch is a lantern, and we all know a good lantern is an indispensable tool! For household use, it’s a fantastic area light. For camping, it’s an equally awesome tent light or light for the campsite. You can even use it as a nightlight or reading light since it gets pretty dim, and the very warm white mode is very soothing and comforting for all you ASMR junkies out there. Unlike my white gas Coleman lantern, I can take this in the tent without worrying about setting something on fire or succumbing from poisonous fumes. The Stretch is easy to tote around, and has a hang ring on top as well as a nice carry handle. They kept the rubber pad, but it’s not soft like the one on the original Olantern Classic Pro 2 I reviewed. They kept the smaller hang hook also. The wide flat base is very stable and has rubber feet for non-skid action. It would take some force to knock it over. It’s also heavier than the non-Stretch Olantern Classic Pro 2 due to the added battery capacity.

I’m sure you’re wondering by now, “Nick, what’s the ‘Stretch’ bit all about?“ Good question! One of the shortcomings of a lantern is the light radius, or the distance from the source the light is broadcasted. When the lantern is sitting on the ground, you get less light over a given area. If you want to increase the broadcasted radius, you either turn the brightness up or hang the lantern up. This requires a tree, stick, tripod, mast, what have you. What if you don’t have one of those? Well, here’s where the ‘Stretch’ bit comes in.

Olight mounted the globe (actually the whole top bit) on a telescoping shaft that can be extended to give more ‘reach.’ I think this is incredibly brilliant and major kudos to the designers who brainstormed this bit. To use it, grip the base with one hand and pull firmly up on the carry handle. There’s a detent to overcome, but once free, the upper part lifts up smoothly. It is a bit stiff, but I think it would smooth out over time and use (you could probably add some silicone lubricant spray to help that). The top extends up to 40.6 cm per Olight to give a larger lighting radius. To return the top to the base, just push downwards until it bottoms out and clicks into the resting position.

There’s a single switch to control on/off and the output. It’s a rotary potentiometer and the action is super-smooth with a nice click for on/off. Olight also added a selector for the warm white (1800-1900K) and soft white (closer to 3000K) lighting modes which I think is a nice addition. Flip it to the left for the warm white, and to the right for soft white. The charge/power bank I/O is under the control knob covered by a very generous soft silicone seal with the Olight logo on it. The cover makes a really nice seal. There’s a single LED indicator above the port for on state, battery state, and power bank/charge state. The power bank function is also very handy and will charge any 5 volt device with a USB interface: Walkie talkie, GPS, phone, tablet, flashlight, headphones, you name it.

When buying an Olight you can be assured it will be a quality item. Every Olight I’ve reviewed has been top-notch in build quality, fit, and finish. The Olantern Stretch carries this forward. For pricing, it hasn’t been announced yet, but I wouldn’t expect to be priced more than $100 US MSRP. That’s a good deal considering good quality LED lanterns aren’t cheap. The fit and finish are excellent, and the burnished, distressed bronze finish looks amazing, and is perfectly applied. There will probably be optional colors also, so hang tight for those. The chimney, “fuel tank” and shade are clad in metal! The plastic parts are also very sturdy and don’t feel cheap or chincy. The telescopic shaft is metal with plastic bushings, and it’s very solid and rigid when fully extended. It also passes the maracas and creak test (applying pressure to various areas to check part fit-up). The Olantern Stretch is sealed up pretty well, with the charge input power bank output port sealed by a generous rubber cover. It’s still only good enough for an IPX5 rating, good for splashes of water, rain, and high humidity environments, so don’t take your Olantern swimming. Olight says it’s good for drops from 0.8 meters. 

Olight’s warranty is one of the best in the industry: 30-day no-hassle returns and a 5-year limited lifetime warranty on most lights. The Olantern falls under their 2-year limited lifetime warranty. Defective lights can be returned for repair within the warranty period, but the buyer pays for shipping. Olight covers the cost of repairs and parts. Even after-warranty support is generous with a 30% discount for a replacement item. Accessories such as pocket clips, holsters, filters, and lanyards etc. are not included under the warranty.

LED, Lens, Bezel, Beam, and Reflector

Olight has once again given us the silent treatment with the Olantern Stretch’s LEDs, but just like the Classic Pro 2, there’s two types of LEDs at work here: Filament LEDs with SMD LEDs mounted to a PCB at the top of the chimney provide the very warm tint, and SMD LEDs housed in a circular diffuser mounted above the filament LEDs for the cooler warm white light. Filament LEDs consist of tiny individual series-connected LEDs bonded to a thin, transparent tubular glass or ceramic substrate resembling an incandescent filament.

Known as COG-type LEDs (chip on glass), they spread light in a near-360 degree pattern, mimicking an incandescent bulb. They’re low-power and relatively low-output. The filament LEDs are housed in a sturdy (and very clear) plastic globe extending up to the top of the chimney, while the cooler LEDs are mounted outside the globe in a ring-shaped diffuser. No optic or reflector here, folks.

Like the original Olantern Classic Pro 2, there’s two CCTs available: A warm white for the filament LEDs (Olight specs 1900-2100K) and a soft white (3250 to 3750K) for the top mount LEDs. The tints change as the brightness increases, just like with a real fossil fuel lantern, and in my testing, I think they got it right! The beam isn’t really a beam per-se, just a nice broadcast of pleasant light like a lantern. Each tint has a unique light pattern, and once again, it’s very lantern-y. Well done, Olight! 

Spectral measurements: 

I used the Opple Lightmaster Pro to measure the lantern at 0.5 meters from the sensor. 

Mode:CCT:CRI Ra:duv
High warm white1906 K900.0033
High white light3453 K86.3-0.0025

Dimensions and its competition

Dimensions: 

Olight Olantern StretchMillimetersInches
Height222 mm8.7
Height (extended)378 mm14.9
Diameter123 mm4.8

Dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter and the nearest tenth of an Inch.

The ‘stretch’ bit adds an extra 6.2 inches of height over the standard height.

Weight

Olight Olantern StretchWeight in gramsWeight in oz
With battery1010 g35.5 oz

Weight is rounded to the nearest gram and tenth of an Oz.

Flashlight size comparison with its competition:

Group 1 left to right: Coleman 288 lantern, Olight Olantern Stretch

Group 2 left to right: Fenix CL26R Pro, FireflyLite NOV-Mu V2, Olight Obulb Pro, Olight Olantern Stretch

Group 3 left to right: Volterrex LED Pro Lantern, Olight Olantern Stretch

Group 4 left to right: Olight OLantern Classic Pro 2, Olight Olantern Stretch

Olight Olantern Stretch: User Interface and Driver

The driver isn’t mentioned, but I’m going out on a limb to say it’s probably a buck driver. The UI is as simple as it gets. Turn the knob to the right (clockwise) for more light and to the left (counterclockwise) for less light. Easy! To switch between warm white and white light tints, flip the switch.

Available modes: 

  • Low, High, with infinitely variable brightness
  • Warm white light 1900-2100K
  • White light 3250-3750K

Available blinky modes:

  • None

From OFF warm and white light:

  • Turn rotary switch clockwise: Turns on. Continue turning to increase brightness

From ON warm and white light:

  • Turn rotary switch counterclockwise: Decreases brightness
  • Turn rotary switch fully counterclockwise: Turns off
  • Flip selector switch left: Activates white light
  • Flip selector switch right: Activates warm white light

Mode memory:

  • None

Shortcuts:

  • Switch between warm white and white light modes: Flip selector switch left or right

Low voltage warning/protection:

  • Yes, the LED indicator will indicate battery state for 5 seconds when the lantern is turned on and when the power bank is in use. Solid green for 100% to 30%, solid red for 30% to 5%, and flashing red for 5% to 0%.

Strobe/blinkies

  • None

Lock-out mode: 

  • None

PWM

  • None visible

Additional/summary info on the UI: 

  • There’s nothing to complain about on this UI. It’s as good as it was on the Olantern Classic Pro 2, and the addition of the lighting CCT selector really adds a lot more functionality and user-friendliness. You can switch the CCT of the light on the fly while in operation at any brightness level. There’s also the ‘soft start’ and infinitely variable dimming like you get on a real lantern is also a cool feature. Olight got it right with this one!

Olight Olantern Stretch Charging and batteries

One of the big upgrades for the Olantern Stretch is the battery. The Olantern Classic Pro 2 had a 4×18650 battery pack good for 11.2 Ah, but the Stretch is sporting a 4×21700 battery pack with 16 Ah. These batteries are arranged in parallel and (per Olight) is good for 59.2 Wh. The charging suite is unchanged with up to 18 watts input from the USB C input and the USB C or A power bank outputs: 5v 2.4a, 9v 2a, and 12v 1.5a on the USB A. USB C is the same, but adds 5v 3a. You need a minimum 18w wall wart for maximum output though.

I tested the power bank for output while charging two items simultaneously and it worked fine, but I could only test loads one at a time. I was getting the spec 15 watts on the C to C, and depending on the device being charged, up to 18 watts for the USB A. I tested the charging input with my Ruideng AT35 USB A tester and Hidance USB C tester and was seeing the advertised charging inputs as well! Olight says the battery should charge in 5.5 hours on 18 watts, with the USB tester showing the charging ending at 4 hours 24 minutes to add 8574 mAh at 9V.

Charge typeFitsNo fitCharge time
Onboard USB CN/AN/A4h 25min

Performance test

Lumen measurements

How Lumens are Measured: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards How Lumens are Measured: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards: The ANSI FL1 standards specify that output in lumens should be measured 30 seconds after turning on, as this is the standardized time for measuring brightness according to the industry standard. This is why we focus on this part in our measurements. The ANSI FL1 standards require an ambient temperature of 22 ± 3°C. We record the ambient the ambient temperature to identify potential reasons for any observed discrepancies.

Lumens are measured in my 50 cm integrating sphere with a Digi-Sense 20250-00 data logging luxmeter. The sphere has been calibrated with a Convoy S2+ measured to 260 Lumens in addition to the Olight Olantern Classic Pro 2, and the figures are within 10% of actual. No current measurements this time due to the isolated current path. The internal battery was fully charged before the testing.

ModeSpecifiedTurn on30 sec.10 min.
Low warm white10 lm4.2 lm4.2 lm
High warm white130 lm109 lm109 lm105 lm
Low white light130 lm96 lm96 lm
High white light500 lm411 lm402 lm398 lm

Ambient temperature during testing:

  • 19.5 °C 

Parasitic drain:

  • N/A

The outputs are a bit low, which is uncharacteristic for Olight, but nonetheless a nice improvement over the Classic Pro 2 Olantern, especially on the higher settings where it was needed.

Olight Olantern Stretch Battery Life: Runtime graphs

How Runtimes are Measured: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards About ANSI FL1 runtime standards: The runtime is measured until the light drops to 10% of its initial output (30 seconds after turning on). This does not mean that the flashlight is not usable anymore. The last column shows how long the light actually works till it shuts off. If there is a + symbol, it means that the test was stopped at that particular point, but the light was actually still running. This happens on certain occasions, with certain drivers, firmware, or batteries.

Lumens are measured in my 50 cm integrating sphere with a Digi-Sense 20250-00 data logging luxmeter. The sphere has been calibrated with a Convoy S2+ measured to 260 Lumens and the figures are within 10% of actual. I tested the High setting for the warm and white light. The internal battery was fully charged before each test.

ModeSpecifiedRuntime (ANSI FL1)Time till shut off
High warm white20h21h 29min21h 29min
High white light14h 20min15h 34min15h 34min

The runtimes are coming in higher than spec, which is totally fine with me! The output is fully regulated (laminar) for the entirety of the useful battery capacity, with a timed step down for each mode. There’s no thermal regulation whatsoever here, and it isn’t really needed due to the low outputs. I didn’t even measure temperatures for the runtimes because the warm white test didn’t get over ambient, and the white light got only slightly warm to the touch on the top. My IR temp gun showed only 26 C after a couple hours. The output cut off abruptly without warning, other than the flashing LED indicator. I would have liked to see the output drop very low or sometimes other than a hard shut down.

For the comparisons, of course I compared the Stretch to the Olantern Classic Pro 2, and there’s a nice increase in output and a generous increase in runtime! For the other comparison, I put the Stretch against the Fenix CL26R Pro and Wuben F5.

Peak beam intensity and beam distance measurements

About Peak beam intensity: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards About peak beam intensity The calculated value of distance in meters at which the flashlight produces a light intensity of 0.25 lux. (0.25 lux is about the brightness of a full moon shining on an object). This means that the intensity has decreased so much, it becomes difficult to see darker objects, or objects that don’t reflect light. The columns ‘Meters’ and ‘Yards’ use rounded numbers.

Beam distances are measured using a Uni-T UT383S luxmeter measured indoors at 2 meters using the fully charged internal battery. Measurements taken at 30 seconds. I tested the beam distance as usual, and with the head fully extended to see if that changed the readings.

ModeCandela measured MetersYards
Low warm whiteN/AN/AN/A
High warm white8 cd67
Low white lightN/AN/AN/A
High white light28 cd1112
With head extended
Low warm whiteN/AN/AN/A
High warm white12 cd78
Low white light4 cd44
High white light52 cd1415

Ambient temperature:

  •  19 °C 

The verdict? The lower modes were too dim even at the reduced measurement distance (the Low white light the exception). However, stretching the head really works! There was a 100% increase for the lowest white light setting, and candela increased over 65% for the highest warm white setting. The highest setting for white light saw a 53% increase in candela. This is pretty awesome, and while I don’t always lean on numbers, the real-world results don’t lie: You get more light over a bigger area when ‘stretched.’

Beamshots

Camera settings and distance: Photos taken with a Canon EOS R100 with Canon RF-S 18-45 mm STM lens. For the indoor and outdoor shots, the camera is set to 1/60s, F4.5 ISO1600 and 5000K WB. I compared the Olantern Stretch to the Olantern Classic Pro 2 as well, in addition to the standard and extended state to show the difference in light distribution.

Beamshots of the following flashlights compared:

  • Olight Olantern Stretch
  • Olight Olantern Classic Pro 2
  • Fenix CL26R Pro
  • Fireflylite NOV-Mu V2
  • Haikelite HK95 (lantern mode)
  • Coleman 288 white gas lantern

Please note that the following beamshots are mainly intended to showcase the beam pattern and beam quality, rather than overall performance. These images are typically taken directly after activation, and in different seasons or weather conditions, and therefore do not fully represent its overall performance. For accurate performance metrics, such as output, beam distance, and runtimes, you need to look at the performance section of this review.

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

Final Verdict

Pros

  1. Beautiful,classic design
  2. Telescoping globe/head
  3. Great build quality
  4. Selectable color temperature
  5. Infinitely variable brightness
  6. Power bank
  7. Long runtimes

Cons

  1. No LVP warning
  2. Output a little low compared to competitors

Explanation on star ratings:

1: Avoid: a match would be a better choice – 2: Poor: significant defect or issues; almost unusable – 3: Average: some defects or issues; but still usable 4: Good: recommended (minor issues) – 5: Great: highly recommended

Reviewer Nick
Nick

5 stars: ★★★★★

While our star rating provides a reliable indicator, we encourage you to read the full review to make an informed decision based on your own needs and preferences.

How do you build a better lantern? Ask Olight! The Olantern series has been a favorite of mine since I reviewed the Olantern Classic Pro 2 in 2022. This thing scratched an itch nothing else could, and moment I set eyes on it I was overcome with good vibes and nostalgia of campouts; campfire smoke, s’mores, hot dogs on a stick, flapjacks and bacon, river swims, rainstorms, board games late night, and hiking. You just can’t get that anywhere else, but thankfully Olight has made at least some of that possible for city-bound-slickers with the Olanterns when and where it’s not safe to run a regular fuel burning lantern.

The Stretch, as the newest member, I feel is an extremely important addition and adds probably one of the most useful features I’ve ever encountered on any lighting device besides the slip-on diffusers for flashlights, and addressed the main shortcoming of every lantern in one fell swoop: More beam distance without hanging it up! They nailed the telescopic head bit and did a great job. It’s not flimsy and it just works, with measurable improvements in lighting radius with the head extended. All the Olantern goodies are present, with the power bank and infinitely variable brightness between the warm and white lighting.

You get a nice output increase for the highest white light mode. The ability to switch on the fly between the warm and white light modes is awesome and addresses an annoyance of the previous Olantern. The increase in battery capacity is also nice.

Misses? The biggest is the output, and while not bad, it’s not great and lags behind (at least in my tests) competitors. I’d like to see a visual (besides the switch LED) low voltage warning of some kind added. However, these are arbitrary here because in the real-world, the brightness deficit is negligible if used in a tent, vehicle, or indoors. If you need more light, grab your Seeker 4 Pro or Warrior 3S. I’m giving it 5 stars and my unreserved recommendation for a lower-output camping lantern.

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