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Olight Warrior X4 review
Olight Warrior X4 specs
|Brand & Model||Olight Warrior X4|
|Flashlight category||Tactical flashlight /Duty flashlight|
|Max. output||2,600 lumens|
|Max. beam distance||640 meters|
|Max. beam intensity||99,310 cd|
|Onboard charging||Proprietary Magnetic, USB C|
|Review publication date||November 2023|
One of the questions I hear people ask when choosing a flashlight is this: What’s the best one? If you’re talking about tactical or duty-use lights, that gets a bit complicated since there’s a lot that goes into that answer, but I’ll break it down a bit (based on my review and real-world use experience). A duty/tactical-use light has to be very bright, durable and dependable, able to withstand all weather conditions, have a beam with adequate throw and side illumination. It needs an easy-to-use user interface with instant access to Turbo or High mode and strobe, along with regulated output that doesn’t track with the battery voltage (sorry FET drivers-you’re out).
It must also be able to maintain relatively high brightness for a decent duration (for traffic duty or long patrols). While there’s a lot of lights being marketed as ‘tactical’ or ‘military grade,’ only a small number of those actually meet the criteria of a real tactical or duty-use light. I’ve sampled some good ones, and the one that usually stands out? Olight, namely their Warrior series. I’ve tested two, and both checked all the boxes, and that’s saying a lot.
Olight has fielded a number of true duty and tactical-use lights over the years in their Warrior line. Besides the Warrior 3S, Olight fields the Warrior X. It comes in Turbo, Pro, and the X3 currently, and they’re all very good, but that’s never good enough for Olight, and it was only a matter of time before a new X came out. Well, that day has come and this is sort of a big deal for Olight since this new Warrior X4 has something special on tap. Other than that, the X4 gets a (slight) boost in output and throw. The same Warrior features that makes it great are still in place though, so let’s see what Olight’s done to the Warrior X!
Olight has some of the most thoughtful and functional packaging in the industry. Everything inside is nicely laid out and organized very thoughtfully. All the important bits are present and accounted for as well. Here’s what you get:
- Olight Warrior X4
- Olight ORB-217C50 5000 mAh 21700 battery
- Silicone tactical ring
- Charging cable
- User manual
This is a complete, ready to go kit. You would want to fully charge the battery to get the most runtime and output though. Unscrew the tailcap, remove the isolator, and get to work! Well, you’ll want to charge the battery before that though because it was sitting at 3.23 volts, which is pretty low.
Flashlight in use, Build Quality, and Warranty
The Warrior X4 is a tactical or duty-use flashlight, but it can also work as a general purpose light. Handling is about the same as something like a Fenix TK20R. It fits great in my hand, with a very grippy finish and the ultra-aggressive pattern on the tube that really bites into your hand for a super-secure grip. It’s lightweight enough that hand fatigue isn’t an issue, and it’s also nicely weighted with a neutral balance that lends itself to easy handling in the overhand or underhand grip. I found it to be easy to maneuver in the cigar grip, further enhanced by the removable silicone rubber coated (over aluminum) tactical grip ring that slides over the rear of the battery tube for easy one-handed use with a pistol or in the cigar grip.
Rear of the head is the charge port, hidden under a retractable collar like Acebeam did for the P18 Defender and Fenix’s TK20R UE. However, this one is quite a bit smoother and doesn’t take a lot of twisting to open. It takes about 190 degrees of rotation to open, and it closes with a muted click. For retention, the Warrior X4 doesn’t have a provision for a pocket clip, but Olight includes a very nice quick release holster. It’s a rigid holster made from a hard plastic (maybe Kydex?). It has a belt clip that would fit over a duty belt no problem. To remove the light, pull forward on the rear of the tube and it flips out. To replace the light, set the bezel in the base and push the light into the hoster. It snaps in and stays very secure.
The switchgear consists of Olight’s familiar rear e-switch. It follows the same vein as lights like the Warrior X3 and X Turbo, but this one’s been redesigned and is identical to the Warrior Nano’s. It’s pressure sensitive, with different functionality based on the force of the button presses. It works like a forward switch (the light is activated by pressing the switch, and can be also activated momentarily). It requires a firm press, which is good for preventing accidental activation. The switch is very pogo-y with a firm action and long travel.
There’s a distinct click between the two stages, which is nice. I could not get the Warrior X4 to roll off my table, and tail standing is not recommended since the tailcap isn’t completely flat. Like the other Warrior lights, the X4 remains compatible with Olight’s Warrior Ring grip ring and for mounting on a long gun, their E-WM25 M1913 Picatinny rail mount and sROD-7 remote switch with quick-release magnetic lock.
Every Olight I’ve reviewed has been top-notch in build quality, fit, and finish. I have never had a quality issue or complaint with any Olight. The Warrior X4 carries that forward to a T. It’s just a superbly crafted tool with great attention to detail. Prices will probably come in around $130-$140 US, which is very competitive with similar offerings.
The Warrior X4 is milled from high grade aluminum alloy, and the machining, fit, and finish are flawless with no misaligned parts, gaps, or blemishes. The edges are all chamfered and smoothed, and the silkscreen text and laser-etched graphics are crisp and sharp with nice contrast against the finish. The X4 comes in black and a special, limited-run camo finish (4880 made worldwide). The review light came in the camo pattern. It’s a type III HA anodizing, and I’d bet it’s very close or identical to the true MIL-A-8625 spec thickness so it’s going to be durable and stand up to some abuse.
The light is glued together, so only the tailcap is removable. The driver-side is set up for the proprietary battery, with a circular contact with a smallish gold-plated spring spring in the center. The tail cap has a spring-loaded button. Springs on tactical or pro-use lights are very important because they improve durability and add protection from recoil impulses and shock loads. There’s no signal tube, which adds additional durability. The rear threads are fully anodized rectangular cut units. They’re oh-so-buttery smooth with plenty of lube. It took almost 6 turns to seat the tailcap. With a glued up body and single o-ring at the tail, Olight gives the X4 an IP68 rating for water resistance and a 2 meter drop protection rating.
Olight’s warranty is the best in the industry: 30-day no-hassle returns and a as of January 2023, lights sold in certain markets (US, EU) get a lifetime warranty. From Olight: If you purchased an Olight® product from the USA after January 1st, 2023, the local service centers will honor your LIFETIME WARRANTY for your purchase. If your Olight product (including its structure, built-in battery, LED, or lens) ever experiences any issues, we promise to take care of it. If we are unable to repair your product, we will promptly replace it with a product in perfect working condition, which will be of equal or better physical condition. If your purchase is a limited or discontinued edition of Olight product, we will repair or replace it with another Olight product of the same or higher value. We will warrant all Olight products that exhibit any defects in material and workmanship under normal use. However, please note that this LIFETIME WARRANTY does not cover loss, theft, deliberate damage, or cosmetic damage. Even after-warranty support is generous with a 30% discount for a replacement item. Rechargeable batteries are covered with a 2-year warranty!
LED, Lens, Bezel, Beam, and Reflector
Okay, everyone who knows Olight knows you don’t get LED specifics. However, my trained eye immediately recognized the LED in the Warrior X4 as the Luminus SFT-70. This LED is pretty new, and has been featured in more and more lights in 2022 and 2023. It’s a domeless quad-die 5050-size LED in either 6 or 12 volts. It features a more robust construction than the SST70 with multiple bond wires embedded in the substrate for increased current handling. Although it’s domeless, it gets just as bright as the domed SST70, throws better, and has a more uniform beam and tint distribution.
The CCT is always cool white for the SFTs, and this one is supposed to be between 5700-6500K. The tint? Plan on it being green at low currents and turning bright white at higher currents. The Warrior X series always used SMO (smooth) reflectors because they give very good beam distance and wide, bright spill.
The X4 has an excellent tactical/duty oriented beam with a defined hotspot like Olights hybrid TIR lens, but with wider, brighter side illumination. There’s tons of beam distance also, way more than you need for tactical or duty applications. The bezel is stainless steel, and on the X4 it’s bead blasted PVD coated and looks awesome. You get some aggressive crenulations that are good for breaking windows or as a weapon for self defense. The lens is a hardened mineral glass unit with an AR coating.
I used the Opple Lightmaster Pro to measure the flashlight at 1 meter from the sensor. Typical of the SFT70, the tint is cool white and the duv shifts positive (=green). Not surprising, but it does turn bright white at higher output.
Dimensions and its competition
|Olight Warrior X4||Millimeters||Inches|
|Length||149 mm||5.9 in|
|Head diameter||39.5 mm||1.6 in|
|Body diameter||26 mm||1 in|
Dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter, and to the nearest tenth of an Inch.
|Olight Warrior X4||Weight in grams||Weight in oz|
|Without battery:||178 g||6.3 oz|
|With battery||250 g||8.8 oz|
Weight is rounded to the nearest gram, and to the nearest tenth of an Oz.
Flashlight size comparison with its competition:
Group 2 left to right: Streamlight Stinger 2020, Olight Warrior X4, Acebeam P17 Defender, Armytek Prime C2 Pro Max Magnet
Group 3 left to right: Olight Warrior Nano SE, Olight Warrior X4, Olight Warrior 3S SE Copper, Olight Warrior 3S SE Titanium
Group 4 top to bottom: Cyansky K3 V2, Fenix PD35 V3, Olight Warrior X4, Klarus XT11GT Pro V2
Group 5, reflectors left to right: Fenix TK16 V2, Fenix TK20R V2, Olight Warrior X4, Fenix PD36 TAC
Olight Warrior X4 UI: User Interface and Driver
The driver is not mentioned, but typical of Olight, it’s going to be a boost driver since the SFT-70 needs 6 volts input and a single li-ion is 4.2 volts fully charged. Boost drivers are awesome since they’re constant current and the output doesn’t decrease as the battery drains like a FET driver. As long as the battery supplies voltage needed to keep the MCUs running, the output is laminar.
The UI is similar to the other single switch Warriors and makes good use of the pressure sensitive rear e-switch. Depending on how you press it, you can access two lighting modes, Regular and Tactical, with three standard outputs and a single strobe (only available in Tactical mode).
To switch from Regular to Tactical Mode (and vice versa): While the light is on, unscrew the tailcap until the light shuts off, then tighten the tailcap. Repeat the process to change back.
Available modes in Regular Mode:
- High, Low
Available modes in Tactical Mode:
- Medium, Strobe
Available blinky modes:
- 13 Hz Strobe
From OFF in Regular Mode:
- Lightly tap the tail switch: Momentary on in Low mode
- Firmly tap the tail switch: Momentary on in High mode
- Lightly press and quickly release the tail switch: Constant-on in Low mode
- Firmly press and quickly release the tail switch: Constant-on in High mode
From ON in Regular Mode:
- Tap the tail switch (in any mode): Turns off
From OFF in Tactical Mode:
- Lightly tap the tail switch: Momentary on in Medium mode
- Firmly tap the tail switch: Momentary Strobe
- Lightly press and quickly release the tail switch: Constant-on in Medium
- Firmy press and quickly release the tail switch: Constant Strobe
From ON in Tactical Mode:
- Tap the tail switch (in any mode): Turns off
- See above
Low voltage warning/protection:
- The Warrior X4 features Olight’s haptic LVP warning, which consists of a vibrating mechanism in the head of the light that buzzes to indicate low voltage. The output will drop to a low level, and the light will vibrate once every few minutes until it shuts off. There’s also an indicator LED under the charge port cover that indicates battery state during operation: Solid green for 100% to 60%, solid orange for 60% to 10%, solid red for 10% to 5%, and blinking red for <5%.
- 13 Hz Strobe
- None. Unscrew the tailcap about 4 turns to lock out
- None visible by eye
Additional/summary info on the UI:
- Olight’s Warrior UIs are fantastic for duty/tactical-use scenarios where a super-simple and easy to use Gomer Pyles-approved UI. It’s pretty foolproof and that’s good when under stress. Click it on, click it off. Press soft for less light, press hard for more. Tap the switch for momentary use with low output or maximum brightness. Genius! Adding a strobe was an important feature as well, since it can be a good defensive tool to distract a ner-do-well and give time for fight or flight (cover). There’s also ATR (thermal regulation) and a robust LVP suite featuring Olight’s genius vibrating LVP indicator for haptic LVP notifications. I’ve tested this on the Warrior 3S and it works great. If the battery is low, clicking the light on will elicit a vibration to remind you to charge/change the battery.
Olight Warrior X4 Charging and batteries
The Warrior X4 adopts the same single 21700 li-ion battery configuration as the other Warrior X models (and 3S). The 21700 usurped the 26650 and has firmly established a foothold as the go-to battery for mid to high output single and multi-cell flashlights. It can handle a lot of current and capacity up to 5000-5500 mAh.
Like the other 21700 Warriors, you get Olight’s excellent ORB-217C50 21700 battery. It’s a 5000 mAh ‘customized’ (proprietary) battery and is protected with a PCB. I know, proprietary batteries are about as welcome as ingrown hairs, but hey, Olight’s lawyers and insurance adjusters like them, so they’re here to stay, and I’m not too bothered.
The main attraction of the X4 is in the charging department. This is a big deal for Olight because the X4 now has onboard USB type C charging! You read that right. This is the first handheld flashlight with onboard USB type C charging. There’s nothing wrong with the MCC system, but once you have it, you’re stuck with it with no alternative for charging other than shoehorning the customized cell into your hobby charger (and no, I don’t recommend it, but it will charge if it fits). No more!
The USB type C port is also done right: It’s hidden under an aluminum collar situated behind the head that unscrews like on the Acebeam P18, Sofirn SF26, and Fenix TK20R. This is a superior design to a rubber flap since it’s far more durable and won’t open unintentionally. The charge speed isn’t advertised, but it’s probably 2A since I got about 1.6 amps on the included USB C cable, and switching to a C to C cable netted about 1.9 amps and 5 volts. On the 1.5/2A MCC I was getting around 2 amps and 5 volts. The battery charged in about 3-½ hours, and from 3.2 volts, added 4126 mAh. The end voltage was 4.16 volts.
|Charge type||Fits||No fit||Charge time|
|Proprietary MCC, USB type C||Included cell only||Any non-proprietary cell||on USB C and MCC about 3 hours|
Lumen measurementsHow 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.
Lumens are measured in my 30 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. No current measurements due to the design of the tailcap and isolated current path. Measurements were taken using the included fully charged ORB-217C50 5000 mAh 21700.
|Mode||Specs||@turn on||@30 sec||@10 minutes|
|Low||300 lm||312 lm||312 lm||310 lm|
|Medium||1000 lm||999 lm||999 lm||963 lm|
|High||2600 lm||2817 lm||2664 lm||936 lm|
The outputs track the factory specs nicely! Typical Olight stuff here. I’m coming in on the nose as far as ANSI is concerned and higher at turn-on. Great numbers for a relatively compact flashlight.
Olight Warrior X4 Battery Life: Runtime graphsHow 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 30 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 use a Digi-Sense 20250-92 data logging thermocouple for the temperature measurements. The probe is affixed to the head using kapton tape and uses the same 5 second sampling rate for logging. I used the included, fully charged ORB-217C50 5000 mAh 21700 and tested all modes.
|Mode||Specified runtime||Measured runtime ANSI||Time till shut off|
|Low||8h||8h 32m||8h 32m|
|Medium||2h 59m||2h 54m||2h 54m|
|High||2h 43m||2h 28m||2h 50m|
No issues with the runtimes, and my results pretty much track (again) Olight’s figures. I really like to see this from flashlights because it shows they’ve been exhaustively tested in the lab before shipping with the numbers to back it up. The outputs are laminar, as expected from the boost driver, and we have excellent thermal regulation and sustained outputs. The light never got too hot to handle, with the temps staying around 50C at the head for High and Medium. You get tons of light for a long time here.
The haptic LVP works flawlessly, buzzing away for about the last 20 minutes of the runtimes before the shut down. The light was inoperable after the shut down due to the protection circuit on the battery though. You do get plenty of warning to recharge or change the battery.
The comparison graph includes some of the best tactical/duty use lights I’ve tested so far, and they’re all pretty similar in output (with the P17 being the outlier due to the XHP70.3 HI). The Olight holds High for a long time and hangs in there with the Acebeam. The Klarus does fantastic also, only let down by the smaller 18650 battery. You can’t really go wrong with any of these lights.
Peak beam intensity and beam distance measurementsAbout 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 5 meters using the included fully charged ORB-217C50 5000 mAh 21700.. Measurements taken at 30 seconds.
|Low||11,360 cd||11,650 cd||216||236|
|Medium||38,160 cd||38,300 cd||391||428|
|High||99,310 cd||92,125 cd||607||664|
|High at turn-on||?||106,400 cd||652||713|
The beam distance and intensity figures also track the Olight specs. This is really good beam distance for a 40 mm head flashlight and more than enough reach for just about any duty/tactical application.
Camera settings and distance: Photos taken with my Samsung Galaxy Note 8 with the camera set to ISO 200, 0.3s, and 5000K WB. The fence is 40 meters distant.
Beamshots of the following duty/tactical-use flashlights compared:
- Olight Warrior X4
- Streamlight Stinger 2020
- Fenix TK20R UE
- Acebeam P17
- Klarus XT11GT Pro V2
- Armytek Prime C2 Pro Max Magnet
- Fenix TK16 V2
- Fenix PD36 TAC
Please note that 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 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.
- Excellent build quality, fit and finish
- Great handling
- High output and great beam distance
- Fully regulated output
- Onboard USB type C charging with MCC backup
- Simple and effective UI
- Ui is a bit sparse for some applications
- Proprietary battery
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
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.
While they haven’t broken the rank-and-file of established brands like SureFire, Streamlight, Modlite, and Maglite for duty/tactical-use flashlights, Olight nonetheless represents a major player, fielding innovative, high performance, and reliable flashlights for casual and professional users. The masses agree, and have spoken with their bank accounts. Olight listens to the consumers and gives them what they want: Warmer LED tints? Cool color patterns and exotic material limited editions? Onboad USB type C charging? Bingo. Non-proprietary batteries? Well, maybe someday.
I digress though, because the Warrior X4 represents a paradigm shift for Olight with the onboard charging. It’s nice because now you aren’t stuck with the MCC system, and now you can plug into any USB type C cable when needed (oh, and the MCC still works also!). You also get a delightfully-simple, but very functional UI, and a noticeable performance boost with more throw. All the Olight pleasantries are here also, the fantastic build quality, attention to detail, and great handling as well as repeatable and verifiable advertised specs. There’s really nothing to nit-pick here, other than some somewhat-subjective points against the somewhat-too-simple UI and the continued use of proprietary batteries.
Hey, Olight did nix one pain point though and it’s a step in the right direction. Once again, Olight hits it out of the park and into the parking lot with this new Warrior X4. It’s joining the ranks of the best-of-the-best (and my new favorite) in tactical and duty/use flashlights and I’d put it up against anything from SureFire, Modlite, and Streamlight. 5 stars for the Warrior X4.