Klarus GL1 Review (600 Lumen, Small weapon light, Micro USB)

Today I am taking a look at Klarus’s first Pistol light the GL1. It produces 600 lumens for 1 minute, has an adjustable rail to fit a variety of different sized pistols and is MicroUSB rechargeable. Thanks to Klarus for sending this to me to review. 

 

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Packaging & Accessories

The GL1 comes with a retail hanging box, and it’s basically what you would expect. It does have a runtime chart on the backend. Inside you get the GL1 itself, a MicroUSB charging cable, and a manual. You also get a replacement rail piece and a couple of small screws to lock it down once get it in place for your firearm.

 

Construction

The GL1 is made from aluminum and IPX6 water rated. It’s a one piece design and fairly slim up front with it getting a little wider as the taper flares out to the back. The front has a fairly deep bezel to protect the lens. On the right side (when mounted) it has a to show an LED, useful when charging, and to give power level indications. ON the bottom is the MicroUSB charging port covered by a silicone cover. Unlike the Olight it’s non magnetic which some will like.

At the back you have two plastic switches that hinge down slightly to turn on. There is a small rubber piece here to give you some give. It’s fairly stiff and at least for me on the glock platform it’s a littler further reach then the Olight PL-Mini 2. What I don’t like is the contour they have chosen for these buttons. For me I find the steep angle uncomfortable because my finger hits the sharper angle using less of the available finger pad to press the button. It works a little better if I come in from the top/side and not directly from top. I think I may file these down a little for better ergonomics.

 

Mounting

The GL1 uses a more traditional screw mounting system and a spring loaded mount. You can loosen the screw by hand or with a coin or spent casing and then push on it to expand the jaws of the pickitniy rail section. The rail piece is adjustable. It slides on a stepped plastic track. The little rail section is spring loaded so once you lock it onto your firearm it won’t go anywhere. Its a mounting system that works pretty well, it’s a little slower than the Olight PL-Mini2’s system especially when switching between guns but overall it’s a pretty good design.

As far as holster options I know of no one yet supporting the GL1 to buy something off the shelf. This means if you do want to use this on a carry gun, you will need to have something custom made. I think it would be super smart for light manufactures to partner with a holster manufacture in advance or come out with something on their own when lights launch. 

 

Competition

The Olight PL-Mini2 is the light that’s the closest competitor in basically all stats and even the size. As you can see from the photos here they are very similar looking from the front with the Olight having a slightly larger diameter bezel. The differences is the mounting systems, with the Olights being quick disconnect and a little easier to use. For comparisons of the beam be sure to check the video version of this review.

Olight on the Left, Klarus GL1 on Right

 

LED & BeamShot

The GL1 is using a Cree XP-L2 HD LED in cool white and powered by an internal 260mAh liion battery. No exact tint data is given but it’s not super cool. The LED sits behind a smooth fairly small deep reflector. 

The beam quality here is good for it’s intended purpose. It’s fairly spotty but the focal point is medium size. There is a good amount of tint shift from the emitter in the center with it being warmer in the middle the the edges. The Olight throws just slightly further according to the stats but to my naked eye I can’t tell a difference. 

 

Heat and Runtime

The GL1 produces it’s maximum of 600 lumens for right at 1 minute and then starts stepping down from near 100% relative output to 10% over the next 11 minutes. It was at 2:10 we see maximum heat at 35C which is fine. The next 50 minutes or so the light maintains that 10% and then the light is running at near moonlight outputs for the next 2 hours. Output here was a bit disappointing since it lost so much output so quickly. While most firefights won’t last very long I want more then 12 minutes of more then 60 lumens and the last 2 hours are near useless. It’s possible I have a bad battery here but I would rather see a more regulated driver and a few more step downs to better control things. 

UI

UI here is easy and straight forward. There is one mode, on with the light. Both sides switches work the same on the light. A quick press locks the light on. If you press and hold the light comes on in momentary mode. Strobe is available if you click both the left and right buttons at the same time. 

 

Recharging

The GL1 uses a a 650mAh lithium ion battery internally that’s sealed in the light. The bad here is that it’s non replaceable but that’s to be expected on a light of this purpose that’s so small. Recharging is accomplished via a MicroUSB port on the bottom of the light. While slightly less convenient the Olights Magnetic system the pro is that it’s a standard cable and easy to charge pretty much anywhere. It’s a trade off I will gladly take.

I measured recharging as taking just 56 minutes and the maximum speed I saw was just under 0.3A so a very safe charging speed for this size of battery. On the side of the light there is a LED that will be red when charging and green when charged.  

Pro’s

  • MicroUSB recharging means no proprietary cables needed here.
  • Strobe is available if you want it.

 

Con’s

  • 1 minute of 600 lumen output I wish was a bit longer
  • No holster options are on the market that I could find.
  • Actuation buttons need revised ergonomics

 

Conclusion

My conclusion is the GL1 is a good first attempt from Klarus on a pistol light. Physically they did a great job, I think. It’s not really much of an original design but it’s enough to be different. The mounting system works pretty well for not being a QD mount. I do wish they would rethink the ergonomics on the rear buttons a bit for their future models.

Performance here needs a bit of work. A more regulated driver with stepped modes is important here, A shorter runtime is ok if the light produces more light while doing it, because we have to remember the use case here, you’re unlikely to have a pistol light in use for hours at a time. It’s much more likely to have it out for minutes at time. 

 

I give this light a pass as it’s better then other brands first attempts at a pistol light. The use of MicroUSB here over a proprietary cable is smart. The UI is good and simple for it’s purpose. Lack of holster options will prevent this from being a cary or duty light but that won’t prevent it from being a good companion for a night stand or desk gun. It will be fun to watch where Klarus goes from here with their GL series of lights. 

 

Pickup the Klarus GL1 at https://klaruslightstore.com/products/gl1-pistol-light-600lm-rechargeable-compact-and-solid-built?_pos=1&_sid=e33c4603b&_ss=r

Olight Odin Dedicated Weapon Light Review (2000 Lumen, 21700, XHP 35.2 LED)

The Olight Odin is Olights first purpose built long gun flashlight. It’s using a Scout mount, has a pressure pad and is capable of 2000 lumens. There have been a fair bit of sponsored Odin reviews, I strive to be different here and tell you how I see it. Thanks to Skyben for sending it to me let’s take a look and get to the review.

 

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Packaging & Accessories

Olight once again does a very nice job here on packaging. It’s very appleske with a white magnetic fold out box and a full color photo on the front with specs on the back. On t he inside everything is packaged very nice inside little boxes, etc. Opening the front cover you have the quickstart guide along with the light and all the accessories. There are quite a few accessories with this light including the light itself and the 4 direction mount. You also get the 5000mAh 21700 proprietary battery, the MCC2A magnetic charger cable, and the new locking pressure switch. Lastly you get a few small zip ties to help mount the pressure switch, a small allan key, and a few extra screws and manual.

 

Construction

The Olight Odin is made from aluminium and hard anodized in a fairly glossy black. Starting at the tail cap, you have a very similar recharging point that was on the Olight Warrior X Pro, with the longer lugs to help you find the tail switch with gloves. It’s a two stage switch with a half press being momentary and full press locking on the light. Around the rear button is another ring and what looks like a space for an o’ring this is for the included pressure switch to lock on to the light which I will explain later. On the sides of the tail you have some tear drop areas milled in place for grip and style. Inside there is a large spring loaded brass contact. 

Threads are anodized, square cut and robust. It does take several turns to get them off. This is one of the few Olights where the positive terminal of the battery faces the head. The body tube is smooth except for the Scout mount. That’s fine, remember this isn’t an EDC light or designed to be handheld, it’s designed to be mounted primarily. 

The head you can tell was milled as one piece but it’s glued on to the tail and is non removable. It has a little larger ring which I assume is to help with thermal for the electronics. Styling wise you have two milled away tear drops, about the size of an endmill. At the front there is a black bezel with small almost saw tooth shaped crenulations. The edges are reasonably sharp. The lens is glass (Good for cleaning powder residue off) and underneath that is a TIR optic. 

Mounting 

This light uses the “Scout” mounting system that Surefire pioneered with the scout series of lights. It provides a 2 post mount thats about 7.75mm off the body of the light. It’s an extra piece that’s screwed to the light with 2 small hex head cap screws with locking compound on them. When I backed the screws out with a 1.5mm Hex key.

Olight included their locking mount that is designed to fit onto a standard picatinny rail. It can mount on the left or the right, and face forward or backward. It utilizes two hex head bolts and comes with the appropriately sized hex allan key. I would recommend once you get it to where you like it, to put some blue locktite on these screws, to make sure nothing backs off during use. This mount has 2 positions on where you can mount the light either on what I will call the bottom or the side. In addition to this light can mount either direction.This mount also locks once the light is in place to help secure it. Lastly the light does have threaded screw holes in it so you can use other 3rd party mounts like my favorite offset mount by Arisaka Defense. You may have to get a little creative with these in the order you mount them to tighten down all the screws depending on what your mounting it on. The big thing here is you have a lot of options.

The pressure switch is an evolution of what we saw on the M2R and Warrior series of lights. It’s designed to go on a picatinny rail as well and is rubber so it can slide on top and to secure you can use the included zip ties. The big difference here is that the end that attaches to the light has a locking mechanism. Simply push the ring forward to engage 4 small detent balls to grip onto the light, pull this ring back to unlock. It’s pretty secure for normal use and won’t break free under normal conditions. I did see a few posts in the Olight Facebook group where people had the lock come loose during extreme combat type situations so your luck might very. I would recommend disconnecting the pressure switch during transport in a bag to prevent the light from coming on accidentally. Cable length on the pressure switch is 165mm.

Size and Weight

I measured the overall length at 136.6mm, maximum diameter on the light (not including the mount) is 29mm, minimum diameter is 24.16mm. Weight with the battery was 174.1g, adding the pressure switch it’s 222.3g. 

LED & Beam

Olight has recently gotten into the nasty habit of not defining the LED they are using on some lights, and the Odin is one of them. With the TIR optic in place you can’t see the LED either. What I can tell you is it’s a fairly neutral white tint at the Turbo setting and in lower modes it’s a bit warm.. The beam is almost all throw with the focus in the center. There is just a very slight spill and there are a few artifacts here, which I think are the edges of the bezel showing. This is perfect for it’s intended use as a weapon mounted light where you want a tight focus. 

Heat & Runtime

The Odin produces upto 2000 lumens on turbo and this lasts 2 minutes before it steps down to 52% relative output. I saw maximum heat at 60C at 2:40 of runtime. Normally I would say this is too hot to hold but since this light is designed to be placed near the muzzle end of a hot firearm it’s not really an issue. We saw one more step down at the 12 minute markand the light ran at a fading 42% output for 2 hours. At the end it had one more step down before stopping right at 3 hours of runtime. I would have wished to see Turbo last longer here but suspect the time is thermally regulated as we can see the temps heat up some after cooling off initially. Overall runtime is the best out of a 1” weapon light that I have tested.

UI

The UI here is pretty simple. On the light itself, the rear button has a half press which gives you the lower lumen mode, and a full press gives you the full 2000 lumens. If you press and hold in either mode the light is in momentary. If you do a quick press in either mode the light stays on. When the pressure switch is connected you only have the full 2000 lumens but the same press and hold gives you momentary and quick press gives you constant light. There is no strobe mode on this light. 

 

Recharging & Power

The Odin uses Olights Proprietary 21700 5000mAh battery which is required for this light. It’s one of the only recent Olights I can remember where the positive terminal goes in facing the head. Proprietary batteries are one of the things I dislike the most. This probably won’t be something you swap out a lot but if you want extra power be sure to buy one and keep properly stored in your kit. Olights MCC3 charging system here is a winner because it’s super easy to recharge and leave the light mounted on your weapon. It’s red when charging and green when charged, and this version charges up to 2A. Total charging time here was 2 hours and 7 minutes which seems pretty quick.

Pro’s

  • Use of the Scout mount meaning you have tons of mounting options to fit your application.
  • Complete Kit with a decent mount.
  • Good Beam for the purpose.


Con’s

  • Only is compatible with 21700 batteries, CR123A’s are not an option if your out in the field and need more light after several hours. 
  • Some possible durability issues with the locking pressure mount system.
  • LED used is unspecified but is Neutral White.

 


Conclusion

For me this is going to be the light I plan on leaving on my 16” build. The way I have it configured now it’s easy enough to remove if I want to, but I feel pretty confident in it’s ability to perform to leave it. I may end up picking up an offset Arisaka mount to get it a little closer to the hand guard. 

 

Overall I think this is a good light for most citizens and hunters. Before I would trust my life to it in a police or military role I would want to do more durability testing. With the current pandemic and ammo shortage of 2020, I didn’t put that many rounds through my AR during range testing but what I did shoot the light held up without issues. 

 

Pickup the Olid Odin on Amazon at https://amzn.to/2E2JxZN

Full Image Gallery: https://imgur.com/a/v50nRek

Jetbeam Jet T2 Review (Jetbeam’s First Pistol Light)

Today I have Jetbeams’ first attempt at a pistol light, the Jet-T2. Thanks to Jetbeam for sending this one to me early to check out. An excuse to go to the range to test a light is always a good one. 

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Packaging

Packaging on this light is a clear hanging retail box with the light prominently displayed in the middle. Some limited information is on the back. Accessories are pretty limited as well, you get the included Jetbeam branded 700mAh USB rechargeable 16340 battery, and a MicroUSB cable to charge the battery directly, and some paperwork such as the manual, warranty card, etc. 

Construction

The light is made from anodized aluminum and is generally rectangular in shape but it has been lightened where possible. The sides have a deep milled area in the sides, and the bottom the corners are well rounded. Starting at the head it features a double anti reflective coated lens, with a smooth fairly deep reflector. The head has small scallops for style and grip. The head is removable for battery recharging and replacement. There  are springs at each end of the light. Inside there is a dual wall construction so unfortunately a battery larger then a 16340 like an 18350 won’t fit in this light. 

On the bottom of the light there is the electronic switched used to lock out the light. It’s large but out of the way and pretty flat. On the back of the light there is a plastic and rubber molded piece that has the switches. It’s almost a different shade of black then the aluminum and not a great match at least on my example. There are switches on either the left or the right side. They only work under the molded rubber bar which took some getting used to and isn’t my favorite design. 

The mount features a insert with 4 slots to allow the universal rail section fit your firearm. The key I had no trouble fitting in a Glock rail or standard 1913 rail. For my Glocks (19 being the smallest) it fit best for me in the furthers forward position. This unfortunately isn’t enough travel for my S&W Shield but I didn’t really expect it to fit here either. The screw used to tighten it down on your firearm is silver in color unfortunately, I really wish it was black instead to blend in better. It has a large straight slot to allow you to tighten it down with a coin. I miss the Olight Quick detach system that I have gotten used to on their weapon lights here. 

Size/Weight & Competition

Length is about 65 mm, Width is 29mm, Height is 36mm. Weight with battery came in at 92.8g, and it’s IPX7 rated.

While similar to the original Olight PL Valkyrie I in layout, I compared the light to the Olight PL Pro because size wise it’s somewhat close. The Jetbeam T2 probably compares best to some of the smaller Streamlight’s like the TLR-7 but I don’t have one here to compare it to. Anyways it’s a medium sized weapon light, larger then the Olight PL-Mini but operates more like a full size light in a medium packaged size. 

 

It fit’s fine on my Glock 19 and 22, but even with the adjustable mount it doesn’t fit on my S&W Shield with the rail attachment. 

LED | Beamshots |  Runtime

The LED being used here is the Cree XPL-HI in cool white. The reflector is decently deep and smooth so for what it is it has a good amount of throw. It’s rated for 120 meters and I found this to be pretty accurate. Beam profile is a fairly hot center and a good amount of lighter spill, a good profile for a pistol light in my opinion.

Runtimes on this light were a little disappointing, at least for high. In high mode it’s good for 520 lumens, and runtime is about 3-4 minutes before it steps down over the next 7 minutes to about 70% relative output. This decline is slow so you don’t notice the sudden dip. The next 10 minutes is pretty stable. The light then flashes a bit to let you know power is lower, and then steps up a decent amount before running till LVP kicks in on the battery. The battery didn’t want to give me a voltage at the LVP cut off point till I charged it a bit. 

Low mode is good for 160 lumens, and runtime is about 105 minutes. This is an odd graph as well, because the light actually increases slightly in output over the first 50 minutes, before stepping back down and then slowly increasing till LVP kicks in. Output till the end gets a bit unstable. 

 

UI

The light has buttons on the left and right, These are button pads that look longer then they really are, you have to get right up under the bar to make them function. A quick press of either button gives you a constant on mode, a longer press give you a momentary mode, Jetbeam calls this tactical mode. To access strobe, double click other buttons.

 

The light has 2 modes, a high and low, 520 or 120 lumens respectively. To switch between them, just long press both side buttons together and the light will come on and adjust it’s output. This setting is memorized. In my experience I had better luck if I pressed and held one button and then the other quickly vs at the same time. Having the light on makes it easier. 

 

The light also has an on/off switch on the bottom that is it’s lock mechanism. To set the lock, long press on the bottom button, and the light will slow flash 3 times. To unlock long press on the bottom button and the light will slow flash 2 times.

 

Recharging

Recharging is accomplished on the included Jetbeam 700mAh 16340 battery via the USB port on the side of the battery. This is the same battery we saw on the Jetbeam RRT-01 Review I did earlier in the year (Great light if you have not seen it). It has 2 LED indicators on top, red when charging, green when charged. Charging speed was very conservative at 0.4A meaning charging a low battery to full (4.17V) took 2 hours, 5 minutes. 

0.4A.

Conclusion

The Jetbeam T2 is Jetbeams first Pistol light that I can find and it’s pretty good for a first go at it. For me the output should be a bit more smooth and regulated, with more emphasis on the high output without step down. The buttons on the sides should have a larger area to enable them to be used more easily. I don’t find the switch on the bottom that useful for lockout because of the UI that takes too long. I would much rather have a simple mechanical lockout via a ¼ turn of the bezel because it’s simpler and faster. 

 

That said I like the shapes here, and so far this has proven to work pretty well. Even though the mount isn’t a tool less design it works well and should adapt to most full size and sub compact model pistols. The XP-L high is a good emitter choice here and the results are alight that throws pretty well which is important for a pistol light. Overall it’s a good first design with room for improvement in the future. 

 

Purchase the T2 on Jetbeam’s Website https://www.jetbeamworld.com/en/product/Jetbeam-JET-T2-Compact-LED-Tactical-Pistol-Light-CREE-XP-L-HI-520-Lumens-Includes-1-x-3.7V-700mAh-RCR123A-80.html or from Battery Junction https://www.batteryjunction.com/jetbeam-jet-t2.html 

Olight PL-2RL Review (1200 lumen Weapon Light + Laser)

Today I have a review of the new Olight PL-2RL Baldr weapon light from Olight. This light takes the PL-2 which I reviewed last year and adds a red laser to the bottom of the light. A few things on the flashlight itself were improved upon and then the addition to the laser. Thanks to Olight for sending this to me to take a look at.

Full Image Gallery: https://imgur.com/a/l4MvtiC

YouTube Version of this Review:

Packaging
Packaging is similar to Olight’s others from 2018. It’s a white cardboard box with texture, and a picture of the light printed on the outside. On the back it has stats about it and runtime specs. I prefer if Olight would relocate the SN/Barcode because when you pull the tab to open the package that piece comes loose.



Accessories include the light itself, 2x CR123A batteries, small Hex wrench, and a 1913 rail piece (The Glock is preinstalled). If you don’t know the Glock rail is slightly smaller, it will work on a 1913 rail but move around more than is desired.

Construction
This light is very similar in construction to the original PL-2 but with a laser module screwed on to the bottom. It’s built of aircraft grade aluminum and is pretty sturdy. The anodizing finish on the light looks the same but in my experience it and the lens clean up easier. I sprayed mine down with Ballistol, let it sit for about 15 minutes while cleaning other things and the powder residue on the front of the light and on the lens easily wiped off with a microfiber towel. My PL-2 was more difficult to clean.


The buttons appear to be the same, they click from the side, not from the back, have a rubberized texture and are ambidextrous. The battery door has a tab to pull up and then it hinges up. This means you most likely will need to remove it from your weapon to swap batteries. Not a huge deal with the toolless mounting system on the PL-2RL. It has visible springs in the front nearest the lens, but the rear terminals are also spring loaded, just not visible. Not much movement in them.

The mounting system has been improved on the PL-2RL. It still features a toolesss quick release lever which I really like. What’s new is this is now more spring loaded. In the unlocked position the light is very hard to shake off accidentally, if you push on it some you can get it to come off. To get it off you have to press in on the lever to expand the jaws a bit. This is definitely an improvement, the PL-2 would just drop free when the lever was in the unlock position, I could see if you were in a tactical situation how the lever may be caught on something and if that happened your light would fall free. With the new PL-2RL that is much less likely to occur.

The light does have a bright yellow warning sticker about the laser that also features as the indicator for the modes. I wish this was done differently. I understand there is probably import/legal regulations regarding the laser, but I wish the mode indicators were laser engraved into the light as a more permanent fix. I find the yellow a bit distracting and it’s not very tactical. I think i’ll either cut the sticker and remove the bulk of the yellow part or use a sharpie or paint marker to make it black.



Size and Weight
This isn’t a small weapon light. The addition to the laser adds quite a bit of bulk to the light. On a full size pistol it’s ok, but on anything much smaller it’s borderline too big in my opinion. Length of the PL-2RL is 83mm, width is 36.5mm, depth is 48mm. Depth of the PL-2 was 30.5mm.

Weight with batteries of the PL-2 is 116g.
Weight with batteries of the PL-2RL is 140g an increase of 24 grams.
It is IPX6 water rated so it should do fine in heavy rain or dropped in a puddle if removed quickly. It’s not a diving light.

Hold a zero?
In my testing the light held a zero pretty well. I tested the light on a couple of Glock’s chambered in .45 ACP, 10mm, and 9mm. I also tested it on an AR9 pistol. We didn’t zero it on every firearm but we did on 10mm and AR9 and after the first few shots it held its position well. I know Olight had some initial issues with the PL-2 and 10mm, we didn’t have any issue after running it through a variety of rounds.

To adjust zero there are two set screws near the laser part of the housing to set windage and elevation. An included Torx wrench does come with the light. One thing I would improve is when adjusting elevation and windage some clicks that you could either feel or hear would be useful, to improve the speed of adjustment. So you know each click is for example 1 MOA etc. You can zero it without shooting a round at home if you have your iron signs setup. Point your unloaded firearm in a safe direction, and zero the laser to your iron sights.

LED/Runtime
The PL-2RL is advertised as producing 1200 lumens through a CREE XHP 35 HI LED in Cool White, however those are peak lumens. Like many high output flashlights the PL-2RL will step down in brightness to 400 Lumens after 1.5 minutes. The runtime is then an additional 100-105 minutes depending if the laser is on or off. In mode 2 when the light is on at a constant 400 lumens, runtime is increased to 105 or 120 minutes depending on if the laser is on or off. The lens is glass, with a plastic TIR style reflector. It creates a very hot center, minimizing spill. The Olight PL-2RL can use 2X CR123A or rechargeable RCR123A cells. If using the rechargeables runtime won’t be as long. This is one case where I would recommend using Primary batteries for longer shelf life, and because the runtimes will be longer due to the reduced capacity of the rechargeable batteries.

The laser is a 5mW red laser that’s similar at 15 yards to a 3moa red dot. It’s running at a 645-655nm wavelength. Max runtime of laser only is 75 hours. Having the laser on doesn’t change runtime much of the XHP 35 HI LED. Olight lists the difference in mode 1 (1200 lumens, then 400 lumens after 1.5 minutes) of only 5 minutes if the laser is on. In mode 2 (Constant 400 lumens) the runtime difference with the laser on is 15 minutes less.

Beamshots
The beamshots are identical to the PL-2. It’s a large hot center and throws decently well. The laser seems to be pretty centered in the middle of this beam. See my video for the examples.

UI
This light uses the same side to side toggle buttons as the PL-2 has. They work best to push from the side in. These work pretty much the same as the PL-2 for light uses. If you long press on either switch you get momentary on, if you quick press you get constant on, and if you click both together you gets strobe (Doesn’t work on laser only mode). On the back of the laser you have a 3 position selector switch, Left, Center and Right to select what combination of laser/light are on when the buttons are pressed..

When the selector switch is all the way to the left you get laser only. It will come on with either left or right button, and pinching each button at the same time doesn’t do anything in this mode.

When the selector switch is in the center you get a Light + Laser option. In this mode when you pinch both switches together the light will strobe and the laser stays on all the time.

When the selector switch is to the right you get only a light. In this mode the light works exactly like the PL-2, giving you momentary with a longer press or constant on with quick press.

Rather then a big yellow warning sticker about the laser, I would prefer they laser engrave the 3 positions into the light itself as I think most people will remove the sticker. Engraving is also much more durable.

Pros

  • Buttons with tactile and audible click
  • Quick open battery door
  • Improved Tool free quick disconnect mounting system
  • High performance but it can’t be sustained due to heat

Cons

  • The addition of the laser makes this quite large and heavier.
  • Holster options will be limited, meaning you may have to have one custom made.
  • Somewhat pricey batteries (CR123A)
  • Strobe interface isn’t ideal requiring pressing both buttons at the same time.

Conclusion
I have enjoyed testing the Olight weapon lights, for me they have worked well on a variety of guns and platforms. The PL-2RL is a nice addition to the line. It’s downfall is it’s size, even on a full size pistol it’s pretty big.. For me it’s probably going to live on one of my AR platforms due to the size and having to get a custom holster. I like the addition of the laser, it makes aiming in the right conditions a little quicker and easier once you have it zeroed in.

I like the Norse mythology name of the PL-2RL Baldr, the god of light. Each weapon light from Olight shows their growth in knowledge and experience in this segment of the industry and this is what you want to see to keep making better products. Olight needs to work with holster manufacturers in advance of a light release to have better support for their weapon lights if they want a wider adoption rate. I am interested to see what they come up with next.

Olight PL-2 Valkyrie Full Review

Today I have a review of the brand new Olight PL-2 Valkyrie weapon light. Olight provided me this light for testing and review and it has not influenced my opinions. Video is still my main thing and I would appreciate you take a look at that too.

Video Review:

Photo Album: http://imgur.com/a/v1Wha

I have the Olight PL-1 II Valkyrie and have it on my Glock 19 for use in home defense situations. I did a video review a few months ago and had zero problems since. The PL-2 improves on just about every aspect of the PL-1, and is the second weapon light made by Olight.

During this review I am going to compare other weapons lights to the Olight PL-2. I borrowed Streamlight TLR-1s from a friend to include. The Streamlight TLR-1s and Olight PL-2 are in direct competition since they both are similar sizes, weights, and both use 2x CR123A batteries.

The packaging is typical of Other Olight products, with a small but nice cardboard retail box with a hanging tag. Relevant information is found on the front and back. Inside is a plastic container that has the light, manual, extra mount, and allen wrench. Olight includes 2 batteries preinstalled but uses a small piece of plastic to prevent accidental discharge in the package. This must be removed before first use.

Size and Weights

Olight PL-2

  • Length – 3.25 Inches
  • Head Diameter – 1.28 Inches
  • Body Diameter – 1.44 Inches
  • Empty Weight – 3oz on my scale

 

  • TLR-1s Empty Weight – 2.95oz on my scale
  • Olight PL-1 ii Empty Weight – 3.32oz on my scale

 

Comparing the Olight Pl-2 to the TLR-1s the Head is smaller and crenelated. The light is shorter in height and length and the same in width.

 

Mounted Pictures

Construction
The body itself is made from hard type anodized aluminum. The battery compartment is contoured to fit the batteries more tightly. I was critical of the PL-1 having plastic inserts to make it compatible with different guns rail systems. The PL-2 Improves this by making them from aluminium. Out of the box this came with the Glock sized rail preinstalled, but you get a 1913 rail piece in the box as well as an allen wrench to change it. The mounting system is very similar between the PL-1 and PL-2. The quick detach mount is very sturdy, and requires no tools to attach to the light. The attachment lever has some machined grip to it but does not include any rubber this time. It has spring tension on it when in the open position it should fall freely off the rail. I really like this easy to use quick detach with no tools required unlike the TLR1s that requires a screwdriver or coin to firmly attach and detach it to your weapon. Sometimes the best light is the one you have with you and you don’t always need to be pointing a gun at what you are needing to light up.

Performance
The PL-2 is advertised as producing 1200 lumens through a CREE XHP 35 HI LED in Cool White, however those are peak lumens. Like many high output flashlights the PL-2 will step down in brightness to 600 Lumens when it gets hot. This is still more than the PL-1 which didn’t have an overheating issue. At 600 lumens it has a claimed runtime of about 70 minutes. In my testing after 1 minute of use it got to 98F. I continued this test for 5 minutes to see if it would step down in output and it 108F. The lense is a plastic TIR style lense. It creates a very hot center, minimizing spill. The Olight PL-2 can use 2X CR123A or rechargeable RCR123A cells. If using the rechargeables runtime won’t be as long. This is one case where I would recommend using Primary batteries for longer shelf life, and because the runtimes will be longer due to the reduced capacity of the rechargeable batteries.

I went and shot about 350 rounds of 9mm and 40 S&W through a Glock 19 and a Glock 22 and had zero issues with this light. It attaches firmly and remains there. Unfortunately I was not the only one at the range this time and we couldn’t shut off the range lights. I didn’t have any trouble with the battery door coming open accidentally during shooting. The only problem I had was the lens got a little dirtyfrom gun powder residue. The RSO’s at my range were pretty interested in it too. After shooting with the light on it naturally gets coated in gun powder residue. It cleaned off fairly well with some Hoppies #9 but seems to have a rougher surface finish on the top of the bezel closest to the muzzle.

Beam Shots
Indoor https://youtu.be/mBR8ocRqxGs?t=8m16s
Outdoor https://youtu.be/mBR8ocRqxGs?t=8m37s

Water resistance is listed as IPX6 so that means it’s highly water and dust resistant but isn’t rating for continuous water immersion. For normal use cases, even in the rain or dropping it into a puddle this should be fine but don’t take it diving.

The quick detach allows you to use this like a normal flashlight if you wanted. It would also allow you to mount it on other things, with cheap 1913 rails available online. Bikes, scooters, etc

Olight has a new switch design and I really like it. It gives you a audible and tactile small click when you turn on and off the light. This is an improvement over the old more mushy switch on the PL1. It gives you more confidence to know what mode you are in. It works from both a front push or side push. If you click both sides of the light at the same time you get strobe. They retained the same interface though where you have to push both sides of the buttons to get strobe. This isn’t the easiest to do if you have smaller hands and impossible to do one handed without adjusting your grip each time. Streamlight with the toggle system on the TLR1 has Olight beat here.

The battery door is pretty quick access. To access the battery compartment it should be removed from your pistol first, you then pull the lever back all the way 90 degrees from the body of the light and the door will hinge open. There is a small tab at the top/bottom of the light that keeps the door attached. There is gasket material on the door itself for water and dust protection. Inside at the bottom there is markings for polarity as well as on the top of the door. The Streamlight TLR-1s system is a bit more complex and over engineered. It uses springs as contacts and a larger tab to keep the door in place. The release is a spring metal and primes the door for opening. It’s easy to use as well but takes and extra second.

Since this is a new light weapon light could not find any custom made holster options yet. This should get better as time goes on and the popularity improves.

When I compare the Olight PL-2 to the Streamlight TLR-1s my takeaways are, the Olight is well engineered and built. For 99% of people that buy it, it will meet their needs very well. To me the Streamlight feels a bit over engineered and uses a better switch system. However the Streamlight uses older technology and LED’s at this point so 300 lumens isn’t much in 2017. Both lights will meet their intended purposes well.

Olight has taken what they learned from the PL-1 II and incorporated user’s feedback into the PL-2. Boosting performance, reducing the height of the light, improving the mounting system, all while keeping the price under the competition. If you want a ton of light, from a small package and are ok with a 2x CR123A light, this is a great option with current technology from a company with a solid reputation.

Pros

  • New buttons with tactile and audible click
  • Quick open battery door
  • Tool free quick disconnect mounting system
  • High performance but it can’t be sustained due to heat

 

Cons

  • No holster options yet that I could find
  • Somewhat pricy batteries (CR123A)
  • Strobe interface isn’t ideal requiring pressing both buttons at the same time.
  •  I like the Streamlight toggle buttons better then the Olights push buttons.

Photo Album: http://imgur.com/a/v1Wha

If you are interested in purchasing you can do so at the links below.
Ebay: http://ebay.to/2rHQW9s
Amazon: http://amzn.to/2tAkExd
Olight Store: https://www.olightstore.com/led-flashlights/safety-and-self-defense/olight-pl-ii-valkyrie