|It comes in a neat little gift box|
Price: $25 online
This is actually the 3rd generation of this flashlight. The first version was the iTP A3. It was a great light, and had a good following. Then Olight bought out iTP, improved the design and called it the Olight I3. The I3 was an even better light than the A3. It added a screw-on, deep carry clip and tail stand capability as well as using the XP-G emitter.
(from Olight’s web site)
1. Utilizing the newest Cree XP-G2 LED, with the max output of 80 lumens (increased by 20%, based on the old i3)
2. Adjustable output levels: Moonlight, Low, High and Strobe mode (by rotating its head to shift models).
3. High quality stainless steel clip makes it durable and keeps a firm grip on your pocket.
4. The pocket clip is reversible, allowing for hat brim or similar attachment.
5. Aluminum body with scratch resistant type III Hard Anodizing (Only black is available).
6. Flat tail cap allows for tail-standing.
7. Adopt linear current regulation technology, no stroboscopic output.
8. Standard attachment: a triangle ring connects the tail hole with light body on one side
9. Orange reflector, comfortable light fit for close range lighting.
10. 96% transparency ultra-clear high optical lens.
11. Attractive gift box packaging.
This is a three mode “twisty” with a fourth, hidden strobe mode for emergencies. The mode order is Medium>High>Low, with the strobe being activated by 7 successive twists. Also, the low mode is actually a sub-lumen “moonlight” mode at .5 lumens.
NOTE: There does sometimes appear to be an issue where the light gets “stuck” on medium mode and is hard to get to advance to the next mode. I thought it might be me, or maybe I got a flaky sample, but it’s done this on two different lights. It seems to happen mostly when I put a new battery in, and once I get it to advance modes, the circuitry seems to work fine after that. But a couple times it’s really annoyed me.
UPDATE: It has been reported on the CPF Forums that the “stuck mode” issue seems to happen when the light and/or batteries are cold. Warming the light up in your hand or cycling through the modes a few times reportedly makes the problem go away.
Since the XP-G2 has a larger die size than its predecessor, the beam on the I3S has a larger hotspot, and has a beam which is more floody than the I3. Since a floody beam is usually more useful for a small EDC type light, it’s actually a plus having more flood. Folks looking for an AAA light with lots of throw should check out the Thrunite Ti, which has the Cree XP-E emiiter with a smaller die size and much better throw.
Both of my units have a little bit of a greenish tint. I’m not really picky about tint on my flashlights, so it’s no big deal to me. Flashlights in this segment are usually a grab bag of tints, except for a few companies that seem to seek out better tinted batches of emitters.But for me it’s perfectly acceptable given that it’s a budget light.
|The black version has a blacked out clip|
The I3S has a reversible, snap on clip. It fits perfect in reverse, so the light can function as a respectable headlamp if you are wearing a ballcap. The clip fits nice and snug. I guess time will tell how this newly designed clip will perform, but so far I’m impressed. And there’s not many tiny lights like this with reversible clips, other than maybe the Microstream.
The black version of the I3S has a black anodized clip and keychain, where the other colors have just a plain steel clip and keychain. The keychain is neat because there’s a little lobster claw on each end.
This model will tail stand. It has a completely smooth, flat tail. It will even tail stand on a keychain if you position it right. The ability to tail stand is another feature I look for in all my EDC type lights.
|This version has a flat tail, for more stable tail standing|
Constant Current Circuitry
It’s worth noting that this light uses a very efficient, constant-current circuit. The previous version, the I3, had headache-inducing, low frequency PWM. In my advanced age, the PWM seems to bother me more and more, to the point where I now specifically look for lights that don’t have it. Which also means I’m now spoiled on the long runtimes these more efficient circuits offer.
These are my informal runtime tests. I will fill these in as I run each test.
This light appears to be a “vampire” in that it will suck every last bit of power from a battery. Once it can’t hold regulation on a mode, it lets it slowly coast down to nothing.
|Mode||Eneloop 2nd Gen.||Alakaline|
|Low||118:30 (started to dim at about 112 hours)||–|
|Medium||8:12 (started to dim at 7:45)||–|
|High||1:22 (started to dim at 1 hour even)||–|
Comparison to previous version- I3
|The new version is a bit shorter|
- The new version is a little shorter.
- The new version uses current regulation, where the I3 used PWM.
- The new version has a snap on, reversible clip, where the I3 had a screw-on clip.
- The new version has a M>H>L mode order, where the I3 used L>M>H.
- The new version has a much lower low.
- The new version has a re-designed, perfectly flat tail and comes with both a clip and keychain.
- The new version uses the newer XP-G2 emitter. Better output and runtime.
- The new version has better machined, square threads.
- The larger die size of the XP-G2 makes the new version have a more flood than the I3.
Fit and Finish
Body: This light has a good fit and finish overall, and seems to improve upon the previous version. The twisty action is smooth, and there’s no play. This probably has something to do with the square threads, which the previous version didn’t have. The threads on mine were lubed, with no grit or dirt, which almost seems to be common these days. The anodizing on the new version is also a little better.
Because of the improved threads, this light doesn’t seem to suffer from “mode skipping” such as other lights in its class.
Emiiter: The emitter in mine is almost perfectly centered
|It has nice, square cut threads|
Clip: The clip fits well in both positions, and the black version has a blacked-out anodized clip, which also has a decent fit and finish. Other color lights come with a plain steel clip.
Keychain: The keychain is held on by a little triangular piece of metal which is easy to take off, so I’m guessing there could be some issue with it falling off of a keychain. They should’ve just made it a split ring.