The Olight M2R Warrior may not be designed with cycling in mind, but it does a good job when used both on and off-road for a tidy price. It stands up to the competition in a hotly contested price range and although it’s not cycling-specific, it does have the bonus that it can be used as a ‘tactical torch’.
The Warrior is actually designed as a general flashlight for 'hunting, the military or any adventure' but works nicely as a bike light with the addition of the Olight bike mount. With a maximum beam of 1500 lumens, five varying levels of brightness and a strobe setting, it covers all bases whether it's an evening commute home or a dark thrash on the trails. The sleek design makes for a good looking and strong front light.
The metallic casing is machined with a smooth finish around the ergonomic knurling to ensure firm grip when it's off the bike, with a clip to attach to a pocket, but it also sits snug in the bike mount with minimal movement. The light is waterproof and weighs just 149g, which is impressive considering its full beam strength and decent battery life.
At full beam of 1500 lumens, Olight claims a run-time of 1 hour 50 minutes. In reality I found it to be a little less, but still plenty for an evening spent smashing through the woods. Disappointingly, at 700 lumens, the run time is only 2 hours, but it's over 6 hours at 250 lumens, which is more than enough strength for some evening riding on the road. If it really doesn't seem like enough time, you can buy spare rechargeable batteries to be on the safe side.
The single barrel beam is narrow, making for good direct vision, but less so for peripherals. The lack of wide spread is good to reduce dazzling of oncoming drivers, but there is still plenty of visibility on those dark country lanes.
There are two switches with slightly different functionality. The smaller side switch allows you to switch between light strengths. The setting is in reverse to bike light convention: a single press will turn on/off the light, while holding it down will cycle through the various modes. It takes a little getting used to, but once you've got the hang of it, it's no problem.
The tail switch is meant as a quick access turbo to full 1500 lumens from switched off. One frustration with it is that if the light is already on, say at 700 lumens, clicking the tail switch for 1500 lumens switches the flashlight off entirely! Ideally, it would jump to 1500 lumens and then switch back to 700 lumens at another press of the button. Instead, you need to give it a double tap, with a moment of darkness in between. To be fair, it was only a real issue when riding trails in the dark. You can ignore it, and still reach the 1500 lumens mode by cycling through using the side switch, but it would have helped to have a rapid access to full beam.
There are additional pressure switches you can purchase and mount to your handlebar for easier mode changes.
The magnetic USB charging base means no micro USB ports to fiddle with or worry about getting wet and rusting, but it also means you can only charge the light where the base is, so you can't charge it at work and at home unless you carry it with you or get another one. It does work well, connecting with the tail button on the torch with ease, and as you might expect it has a red and green light to indicate charging at a glance.
The additional bike mount worked a charm on the handlebar. It's pretty simple, but allows for angle adjustment and does a good job of holding the light in place. The rubber tabs to secure the torch and bar were tight, making it tricky to remove and fit quickly, but meant a solid hold.
It's a shame the light doesn't come with a helmet mount, but it's hardly surprising as it's not a cycling-specific light. However, a simple helmet mount would be great, especially considering how light the Olight is. I did attempt to bodge the bar mount which kind of worked, but a more purpose-made design would be handy.
What about value? Well, at £74.95, plus £5.95 for the mount, the Olight is up against the likes of the Ravemen PR800 and Giant Recon HL900. This price range is pretty well contested and all have similar quality for their central beam strength. The Giant is more compact, the Ravemen double barrelled, but for being able to see and be seen in the dark, they all do a good job.
Overall, I reckon the Olight M2R Warrior is a decent option for cycling, despite that not being its raison d'être, and it's versatile.
Bright beam, lightweight and well made, with some issues down to it not being cycling-specific
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Olight M2R Warrior 1500 Lumen torch + bike bracket
Size tested: 1,500 lumens
Tell us what the light is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
The Olight M2R Warrior is designed for outdoor activity and to be used as a handheld flashlight rather than specifically designed for cycling. Having said that, it works well on the bike with the universal mount. It has good battery life even on high beam, and a strong waterproof finish.
The flashlight Olight M2R is our brand new rechargeable dual switch LED tactical flashlight.
This flashlight is equipped with the latest XHP35 HD LED powered by a single high discharge rate 18650 with an output range of 1 to 1,500 lumens.
The M2R features a quiet tail switch with minimal noise when being clicked on for tactical purposes.
The tail cap of this light can magnetically charge directly through the tail tactical switch.
The side switch has a similar operation as the OLIGHT S series flashlights,
while the tail switch can be switched between conventional and enhanced tactical operation modes allowing the userto access turbo or strobe with a single click.
With its slim head, lanyard hole, and dual direction pocket clip, the M2R is the perfect tactical light to carry with you on any adventure.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the light?
Olight lists these features:
Beam Distance (ft) 682
Beam Distance (m) 208
Max. Performance (lumens) 1500
Charge type Magnetic USB charge base
Compatible Batteries 1 x 18650 or 2 x CR123A
Light Intensity (candela) 10880
Light Form Standard hotspot diameter with impressive distance. The perfect all-around beam profile.
Lens / Reflector Type Smooth reflector (central area and flood area).
Mode Operation Dual Switch
Form/Size Factor Medium size (Permanent Marker)
Series Series M (Tactical, Military)
High voltage 3500mAh 18650 lithium ion battery included, delivering a maximum output of 1,500 lumens.
Comfortable and firm grip with ergonomic knurling allowing the user to operate the tailswitch naturally without even looking at it due to it's smooth, barrier-less tail cap.
Aside from momentary or constant turbo from the standard operation mode, the light also features an enhanced tactical mode for one click instant access to strobe.
Compatible with all conventional 18650 batteries.
Rechargeable through the included 5V 750mAh OLIGHT USB magnetic charging cable or the optional OLIGHT Micro-Dok (II or above).
LEVEL 1 (lumens) 1500 - Run-time 1h50m.
LEVEL 2 (lumens) 700 - Run-time 2h.
LEVEL 3 (lumens) 250 - Run-time 6h15m.
LEVEL 4 (lumens) 60 - Run-time 20h.
LEVEL 5 (lumens) 15 - Run-time 70h.
LEVEL 6 (lumens) 1 - Run-time 25 days.
SOS / BEACON No
Weight (g / oz) 149 / 5.26
Length (mm / in) 130 / 5.12
Head Diameter (mm / in) 25.4 / 1.00
Body Diameter (mm / in) 24.4 / 0.96
Led Cree XPH 35 HD
Packaging Carton box
Use hunting, tactical, military, security and protection, police, EDC, outdoor, professional activities, police;
Olight M2R flashlight x 1
Double Direction Stainless Steel Pocket Clip x 1
10A HDC 3500mAh 18650 Battery x 1
USB Magnetic Charging Cable x 1
Lanyard x 1
Holster x 1
user manual x 1
Great quality. Well made, as are all the accessories and charging cables to go with it.
An ergonomic feel and smart look. The usability with two switches is generally good – apart from the rather major issue of the tail light switching the light off when you want to jump immediately to full strength...
The bike mount – bought separately – felt secure, with minimal movement of the light despite it not being a fixed design. A helmet mount option would be good.
No problems from rain or mud, and charging has remained consistent.
Recharging has remained consistent throughout and it takes a few hours to charge from empty. Battery life is nearly 2 hours on full beam, yet somehow only 2 hours at 700 lumens, which is odd.
Good variety of modes and run-times considering the size of the light. The beam is relatively narrow, making for good direct vision and less dazzling of oncoming traffic, but less good for peripheral vision.
Excellent so far, including surviving a few drops and some wet and muddy off-road rides.
Very light compared with other lights of similar strength. No additional battery pack, which is a bonus.
It's not cheap, and the mount is extra, but what you're getting for £80.90 (inc mount) – 1500 lumens from a single LED with a small design and rechargeable battery – is impressive.
Tell us how the light performed overall when used for its designed purpose
It's designed more as a handheld flashlight, which it does very well, but it's good on the bike too.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the light
Good beam strength with decent battery life. Well machined casing and clever magnetic charging base.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the light
The tail switch turning the light off rather than going to full strength when you need it. No helmet mount.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
Looking at light strength comparisons, it is on a par with others on the market. It is close to matching the central beam strength of the Cateye Volt 800, and matches almost exactly to the Giant Recon HL900 for beam strength and shape as well as price.
Did you enjoy using the light? Yes
Would you consider buying the light? Yes
Would you recommend the light to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
Despite not being cycling-specific it's a decent option for riding on the road and trails. The beam strength is good, though frustrations like the tail switch mode do let it down.
About the tester
I usually ride: Giant TCX My best bike is: Scott CR1 Pro
I've been riding for: Under 5 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, cyclo-cross, commuting, touring, club rides, sportives