Yet another S1A review!

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Yet another S1A review!

Ladies and Gentlemen, like several others here, I have now received an unsolicited complimentary Olight S1A from Lydia at Olight in Marietta Ga. and she has asked that I write a review.

I am aware that this particular light has been reviewed up, down and sideways by some very competent reviewers and trying to add anything of value is going to be difficult indeed – everything that needs saying has already been said, and very well at that.

I will, therefore, try to keep this brief and to the point. If anyone has questions I will cheerfully try to answer them to the best of my ability.

Packaging – has already been well described. There is some information on the back of the plastic box that may bear relevance. It describes:

“Cree XM-L2, with TIR optics and a maximum beam of 600 Lumens.”

“Conventional output of 0.5 / 5 / 50 / 220 lumens, strobe at 10Hz, and turbo mode of 600 lumens available with a 14500 battery”.

“Stainless steel bezel and switch ring with stylish blue coating”

“Flat magnetic tail cap and recessed silicon switch to avoid accidental activation”

“Built in timer, and lanyard with perforating tool.”

The front of the package advertises a high of 220 Lumens, maximum run time of 25 days, and a throw of 71 meters.

To Olights credit, the package is seriously tough. Getting it open without resorting to a Swiss Army knife is a challenge, and the light itself is held within by means of a rubber O-ring. There is a lithium primary cell already inside the light, protected by a plastic insulator to prevent accidental activation in transit.

Scanning the bar code on the side of the box took me directly to the S1A on Olights website and another comprehensive description.

Contents are the light, a users manual in every language under the sun and a lanyard with the ‘perforating tool’ which is in fact a miniscule cotter pin. Still, it’s a great idea and would reduce the ‘lanyard installation fumbles’ a lot.

First Impression is of a delightfully small, beautifully crafted light. I was mildly shocked to find that it is, in fact, 1.5 mm shorter that Olights earlier i2eos and only about 1 mm longer than FourSevens Mini AA. Make no mistake, this is a small light! My beloved vintage Fenix L1P looks positively clunky beside it.

S30, S20-L2, S1A, Olight i2eos, Mini AA, Fenix L1P

The switch is crisp and quite firm. I doubt it would come on accidentally. It is made of soft silicone, and I hope it won’t get too much wear and tear from the other junk I carry in my pockets.

Output & Beam has also been previously discussed at length; suffice it to say that all of the outputs appear to be as described by Olight.

I have attempted to photograph the beam angles; all are on ‘low’, and are, left to right, an Olight S20-L2, FourSevens MiniAA, Olight i2eos and the S1A.

The S1A is noticeably more ‘floody’. Tint appears to be close to the S20-L2 or perhaps a bit closer to neutral. I have been vocal in my earlier complaints about green tints in Olights offerings but I think they’re trying to correct that – my first S20 was horribly green, the second is a lot better, my S30 is really white, although still quite cool, and the S1A doesn’t seem green to me at all. To my (admittedly very old) eyes it seems to shift a bit from cooler to warmer as the output increases, which is no doubt a function of the driver.

There is one anomaly that I will point out – both the S20 and the S1A are advertised as having a low of 0.5 Lumens. In the case of my individual lights, the S1A is much lower than either of my S20s. It compares very closely to the low offered in the Q-Lite Rev. A driver, advertised as .09 Lumens. I know there can be variations from copy to copy, but this particular S1A has a very low moonlight indeed and that pleases me greatly.

‘Moonlite’ Lows, left to right, S30, S20, S20-L2, S1A

Moonlite’ lows, Olight S20-L2, Convoy S2/Q-lite Rev.A driver, Olight S1A

Conclusion – There’s nothing here to not like, and nothing to criticize. This is an impeccably crafted, delightfully small 1 AA light that puts out a formidable volume of light in well spaced increments. I think it’s going to be very popular.

Again, although I lack the technical expertise of our more modern reviewers, I will cheerfully try to answer any questions you might have. For the record, I do not intend to make a habit of doing reviews – at my age and level of expertise I’m more comfortable scratching pictures in the dirt with a stick. Still, Lydia informs me there is another very special light on the way. What’s a man to do?

Olight Official :
US Amazon :
UK Amazon :
CA Amazon :

DBSAR's picture
Last seen: 7 hours 23 min ago
Joined: 02/11/2013 - 23:28
Posts: 6263
Location: Ontario, Canada

nice. Smile i too am doing a review of the S1A for Olight through Lydia.

That Canadian flashlight guy & Lantern Guru -Den / DBSARlight

Last seen: 5 months 1 day ago
Joined: 01/26/2015 - 18:02
Posts: 1031
Location: US

Nothing the matter with another review. I love me a nice review for my reading pleasure. thanks!

Last seen: 5 months 4 weeks ago
Joined: 10/15/2015 - 23:06
Posts: 329
Location: United States

Before I buy a light I pretty much read every review I can.

The more the merrier as far as I’m concerned.

I hate spending money on something I’m not 100% o

stephenk's picture
Last seen: 2 days 49 min ago
Joined: 01/30/2016 - 05:09
Posts: 1308
Location: Australia

I feel like I’m the only person who didn’t get sent one for review!

Last seen: 6 hours 1 min ago
Joined: 11/12/2012 - 23:21
Posts: 771
Location: Canada

I have a hunch that because this is the U.S. distributor based in Georgia, they probably kept their promotion to within North America. But yes, they do seem to have been generous with material for review. Freebie aside, I’ve always been impressed by Olights stuff and the folks in Georgia seem to be starting off right.

A while back when the S30s were new, I bought one and almost immediately had driver problems. One email to Olight, and within minutes I was issued a ‘return for warranty’ number. I later learned that the light was returned to China for repair, but when the time frame grew awfully long I was offered a choice of new lights to replace it. It turned out the S30 was already on its way to me, but I was none the less impressed with the courteous service and remarkably quick communications. Their representative ‘Lydia’ has always returned messages no later than the same day, and often within minutes. That means a lot to me.

This S1A? I’m not sure I can honestly call it a ‘budget’ light, as $50 is not a trivial sum – but comparing it to my several cheaper 1-AA lights is like comparing Rolex to Timex. They both do the same thing, sort of, but the one is so much more satisfying than the other.

scrumpypaul's picture
Last seen: 1 week 19 hours ago
Joined: 03/19/2015 - 18:29
Posts: 758
Location: East Durham, UK

Lydia also contacted me and asked if I’d review it.

I said “yes” of course.

Haven’t heard much after that, though she did say that she was involved in the Outdoor Retail show at Salt Lake City which finishes tomorrow and then she’d be in touch after that.

I hope I do get one to have a look at, even though I am over the pond….. Big Smile

Am I the only UK (or EU for that matter) person she’s been in touch with?

Anyway, here’s hoping. I’d like to compare it to my S1 and S15R Batons.


Last seen: 3 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 12/01/2011 - 03:20
Posts: 2273
Location: Lost Islands ™

I’ve been contacted too but I’m not sure if I will be sent a sample as I live far. She told me it was ok and to tell my address but I’ve not heard of her since. No worries if it does not come Smile

Never ever forget and forgive. Niwal**er new kid on the block trying to act tough.
Do not support this brand.