Warning: pic heavy, as usual.
The M2X-UT Javelot from Olight represents a significant departure for a mass-market flashlight; this model features a stock dedomed emitter.
All LED emitters feature a clear dome covering. This provides protection for the emitter, and helps even out the beam profile (especially in regards to tint). However, this also reduces the ability to focus light from the emitter, as it effectively moves the emitting surface from the die to the surface of the dome. As enthusiasts have long noted, dedoming the emitter drastically improves the ability of a reflector to focus the light for peak distance throw.
Although there are number of custom modders that offer dedoming services, this is the first time I've seen a major manufacturer release a dedomed light straight from their factories. As I don't know whether Olight is doing the dedoming (or custom ordering these from Cree), I will refer to this light as a "stock dedome" (i.e., "factory dedome" is a little imprecise, as I don't know which factory is doing the dedoming).
Let's see how the M2X-UT compares to other thrower lights, including a number of modded dedomes in my collection.
Manufacturer/Dealer Reported Specifications:
(note: as always, these are simply what the dealer/manufacturer provides – scroll down to see my actual testing results).
- LED: CREE XM-L2
- Runs on: 2x CR123A or 1x 18650 (Batteries NOT included)
- Output mode/Runtime: High: 1020 lumens / 1hrs, Mid: 250 lumens / 3hrs, Low: 20 lumens / 30hrs
- Peak Beam Intensity: 164,000cd
- Max Beam Distance: 810 meters
- Forward Tactical Click Switch for easy on/off and momentary function
- Easy user interface, change modes by rotating the head
- Smooth reflector providing perfect beam with exceptional throw
- Intelligent temperature control system to prevent overheating
- Anti-slip knurling for excellent grip
- Reverse polarity protection to prevent improper battery installation
- Toughened ultra-clear mineral glass with anti-scratch coating
- Constructed from aero grade aluminum alloy
- HA III military grade hard-anodized finish
- Impact resistant to 1 meter (3.3 ft)
- Waterproof in accordance with IPX-8 standards (up to 2 meters)
- Dimensions: Length: 6.4" (163mm), Bezel Diameter: 2.5" (63mm), Body Diameter: 1" (25.4mm)
- Weight: 7.7 oz (218g) (excluding batteries)
- Included Accessories: holster, battery magazine, lanyard, and spare O-rings
- MSRP: ~$110
Like most recent Olight lights, you have the choice of a hard cardboard box or presentation-style plastic carrying case. Inside the presentation case, the light and all accessories are carefully packaged in cutout foam. Included with the light is a sturdy belt holder, spare O-rings, good quality wrist lanyard, 2xCR123A battery carrier, warranty card and manual.
From left to right: Keeppower Protected 18650 3100mAh; Olight M2X-UT, M3X (L2); Eagletac S200C2vn; Olight SR52vn.
All dimensions directly measured, and given with no batteries installed (unless indicated):
Olight M2X-UT: Weight: 218.6g, Length: 163mm, Width (bezel): 47.0mm
1x 18650 lights:
Eagletac S200C2vn (V54 mod): Weight: 168.7g, Length: 155.0mm, Width (bezel): 62.3mm
Eagletac G25C2-II: Weight 141.0g, Length: 150.6mm, Width (bezel): 39.6mm
Eagletac TX25C2: Weight 93.6g, Length: 120.4mm, Width (bezel): 31.6mm
Nitecore SRT7: Weight: 172.4g, Length: 158mm, Width (bezel): 40.0m
Olight M22: Weight: 148.4g, Length: 144.8mm, Width: 41.2mm (bezel)
Zebralight SC600 II: Weight 79.3g, Length: 101.8mm, Width (bezel) 29.7mm
2x 18650 lights:
ArmyTek Barracuda: Weight 400.8g, Length 264mm, Width (bezel): 64.0mm
Eagletac GX25L2: Weight: 198.3g (with battery pack: 290.1g), Length: 224mm, Width (bezel): 39.5mm
Eagletac GX25L2 Turbo: Weight: 320.7g (with battery pack: 412.5g), Length: 251mm, Width (bezel): 62.0mm
Olight M3X no Extender: Weight: 260.9g, Length 211mm, Width (bezel): 62.3mm
Olight M3X with Extender: Weight 277.8g, Length 244mm, Width (bezel): 62.3mm
Olight SR52vn: Weight: 401.1g (501g with 6xCR123A), Length: 162mm, Width (bezel): 63.1mm
Thrunite Catapult V5: Weight: 556.7g, Length: 266mm, Width (bezel) 59.1mm
3x/4x 18650 lights:
Fenix TK61: Weight: 605.7g (790g with 4x18650), Length: 218mm, Width (bezel): 96.0mm
Niwalker BK-FA01 (XM-L2): Weight: 682.3g (864g with 4x18650), Length: 209mm, Width (bezel): 80.0mm, Width (tailcap): 50.3mm
SupBeam K50: Weight: 645.0g, Length: 230mm, Width (bezel): 90.1mm
Thrunite TN32 (XM-L2): Weight: 655.9g (808g with 3x18650), Length: 201mm, Width (bezel): 79.0mm
Physically, the build of the M2X-UT is very similar to my Olight M21-X, M22 and M3X models – but there are some interesting differences. Anodizing is a matte black finish, hard anodized (i.e., type III) on all lights. Body labels are bright and clear, and relatively minimal. Overall external styling of the body handle is identical across the models, with the classic Olight raised checkered pattern (which replaces actual knurling, to help with grip).
There are two external styles to the tailcap, with the M2X-UT matching the appearance of my M3X (i.e., fluted ridges instead of the checkered pattern). Like the M3X, the M2X-UT can tailstand (not offered on the M21-X/M22 tailcaps). However, screw threading of the M2X-UT matches the M21-X/M22 models, and not the M3X. As a result, you can't use the battery extender of the M3X on the M2X-UT. Screw threads are anodized on all lights, for tail lock-out.
Styling of the head of the M2X-UT is very similar to the M3X, just not quite as deep. The screw threads are identical in the head region between the M3X and M2X-UT, and feature a standard triangular cut. This is different from the square cut on the M21-X and M22. As a result, you could swap the heads between the M2X-UT and M3X, but not with the M21-X/M22. This could be useful if you wanted to try out the 2x18650-sized body/tailcap of the M3X on the M2X-UT head.
As with other models, there is a spring mounted on the positive contact board in the head, so flat-top cells can be used In the light.
The bundled cigar grip ring is made of metal, like the other models. However, the M2X-UT lacks the groove intended to fit a pocket clip. Due to overall dimensions of the M2X-UT (i.e., a large head and small body), a pocket clip would not make a lot of sense.
The M2X-UT uses a forward clicky switch, which similar feel to all the other models.
This clearly isn't your standard XM-L2 emitter. However Olight has managed to obtain dedomed emitters, my sample looks perfect – there is no sign of damage or left-over residue from the dome. This makes me think they are either getting these "factory" dedomed by Cree, or have a found a very good process to automate dedoming in their own hands.
I would expect outstanding throw performance, consistent with other dedome lights. Scroll down for beamshots.
User interface is basically the same as the M22. Turn the light on/off by the tailcap forward clicky switch (press for momentary, click for locked-on).
There are three main output levels controlled by a loosen/tighten of the head. Mode sequence is Lo > Med > Hi, in a repeating loop. The light has mode memory, and retains the last level set when you turn it off and back on.
From off, a double-click or double-half-press of the tailcap switch jumps you to Hi, no matter what mode the light was memorized in. A triple-click/triple-half-press of the switch jumps you to Strobe. There is no memory for the special multiple-click states of the light.
For more information on the overall build and user interface, please see my video overview:
As with all my videos, I recommend you have annotations turned on. I commonly update the commentary with additional information or clarifications before publicly releasing the video.
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As always, there is no sign of PWM (pulse width modulation) at any output level – the M2X-UT is current-controlled like its predecessor Olight models.
The strobe is a fairly typical fast "tactical" strobe, of 9.7Hz frequency (as on the M22).
No Standby Drain:
Thanks to the physical forward clicky switch, there is no standby drain when off.
For white-wall beamshots below, all lights are on Max output on an protected 18650 batteries. Lights are about ~0.75 meter from a white wall (with the camera ~1.25 meters back from the wall). Automatic white balance on the camera, to minimize tint differences.
I will compare the M2X-UT to several different classes of "thrower" lights below.
Dedome emitter comparisons:
Comparison to stock XM-L2, 2x18650 lights:
Comparison to stock XM-L2, 3x/4x18650 lights:
OK, that's a lot of comparisons.
As you can see above, the M2X-UT is an outstanding thrower for its size. Since dedoming reduces the effective surface area for focusing, you get a smaller and further throwing hotspot on the M2X-UT than you would expect from a dome-on emitter with this size reflector.
It also produces the typical green-yellow tint shift seen on custom mod dedome jobs. As always, it is not quite as green looking in real life as these pics seem to show – I find the automatic white balancing on the camera tends to enhance the green appearance somewhat.
You will also notice that the M2X-UT spillbeam is slightly wider than most lights in the 1x18650 size – although is very consistent with the M3X. There does seem to be a bright secondary ring around the hotspot on my sample (i.e, an artifact). It is also common to see a center-beam "donut effect" at really close distances, due to the distance focusing.
The other thing you might notice is that the M2X-UT can easily hold its own against even the largest stock dome-on XM-L2 lights (i.e., the last set of comparisons above). Scroll down for exact beam measures, but the M2X-UT is currently the furthest throwing "stock" XM-L2 light in my collection.
Since you can't really only tell so much from these standardized up-close beamshots, let's move on to my basement. For your reference, the back of the couch is about 7 feet away (~2.3m) from the opening of the light, and the far wall is about 18 feet away (~5.9m). Below I am showing a couple of exposures, to allow you to better compare hotspot and spill.
For these comparisons, I am just focusing on some of the custom dedomed competition (since the M2X-UT out-throws all the dome-on competition).
The M2X-UT has a fairly tightly focused hotspot, with relatively little corona. Note that my S200C2vn sample uses a dedomed XP-G2, so is capable of even tighter focusing (but has less output). Even if you had the higher output dedomed XM-L2 version, I would still expect the M2X-UT to out-throw it, thanks to its larger reflector.
Unfortunately, it is the middle of winter here, so I am afraid outdoor beamshots will have to wait.
All my output numbers are relative for my home-made light box setup, as described on my flashlightreviews.ca website. You can directly compare all my relative output values from different reviews - i.e. an output value of "10" in one graph is the same as "10" in another. All runtimes are done under a cooling fan, except for any extended run Lo/Min modes (i.e. >12 hours) which are done without cooling.
I have devised a method for converting my lightbox relative output values (ROV) to estimated Lumens. See my How to convert Selfbuilt's Lightbox values to Lumens thread for more info.
Throw/Output Summary Chart:
My summary tables are reported in a manner consistent with the ANSI FL-1 standard for flashlight testing. Please see http://www.flashlightreviews.ca/FL1.htm for a discussion, and a description of all the terms used in these tables. Effective July 2012, I have updated all my Peak Intensity/Beam Distance measures with a NIST-certified Extech EA31 lightmeter (orange highlights).
For these tables, I thought I would show a comparison to both the 1x18650 class, the multiple 18650 class …
First thing to note above; my NIST-calibrated light meters reports even higher peak intensity throw for the M2X-UT than the Olight specs indicate (i.e., 196,000cd on my sample, vs 164,000cd spec).
These is very consistent with the beamshots, and shows that my M2X-UT sample out-throws the stock Fenix TK61, Niwalker BK-FA01 or Thrunite TN32 (although that last one is too close to call in practice).
To compare it to the custom dedome mods, the stock M2X-UT beats out my Vinh Nguyen S200C2vn XP-G2, and is pretty close to the SR52vn. Of course, the much larger (and more heavily driven) K50vn and TK61vn throw much further.
Let's see how the output levels compare to the official specs in my testing:
As always, my estimated lumens are very close to the published Olight specs.
Previously, I used to use AW 2200mAh protected cells in my 18650 testing (for their excellent consistency and ability to fit and work in any light). After considerable testing, I have switched to a few of brands of protected NCR18650A cells (3100mAh capacity). I have found a few brands that show good correlations and internal consistency, and that collectively can fit and work in all of my lights. I have now moved to using 3100mAh cells in all my 18650-class reviews.
As always, my standard runtimes are done under a cooling fan. For these comparisons, I am sticking with other 1x18650-class lights (since nothing else would be fair).
I've added AW unprotected 18350 results to the 2xRCR graph above, given the ability of the body to accommodate.
Regulation pattern is good, with relatively flat stabilization overall and a drop-off period before the batteries are exhausted. The M2X-UT actually steps down to the Lo level for a few mins before the batteries die completely.
On Hi, the light starts to step-down in output beginning at 3.5 mins into the run, and levelling off after 2 mins at a reduced max output. This is gradual enough for you not to notice – and you can always click off/on to restore initial max output.
Overall, the M2X-UT performs like a good current-controlled light. I note that output/runtime efficiency seems to be just a slight bit lower than most of the dome-on competition. This is likely a consequence of the dedoming – I have previously noticed that dedoming can effectively reduce the overall output of a light. I am not quite sure why that is the case, but it may have to do with beam losses in the optics being different for heavily focused lights. Or my lightbox/ceiling bounce sensitivity may be off slightly for heavy throwers – it's hard to know for sure. Either way, it is a fairly minor effect – at worse, think of it like dropping down an output bin or two for a classic dome-on emitter.
The M2X-UT has a much larger head than typical for a 1x18650 light, making it more difficult to easily carry. You'll note a pocket clip is not provided, for obvious reasons.
Loosen/tighten head twists are required to change output modes (i.e., needs two hands).
Dedomed emitters have a warmer overall beam tint – typically green-yellow, as seen here.
Long-term stability of dedomed emitters (compared to standard dome-on ones) is unknown, but I would not expect any significant issues from a stock dedome such as this. There is no sign of residue or damage from the dedoming process on my sample.
There is a timed step-down feature on Hi, but this is gradual.
Despite its relatively small size, the M2X-UT is the furthest throwing stock XM-L2 light I've tested to date. It's incredible to see a light this size matching or exceeding heavy throwers like the Thrunite TN32 and Fenix TK61.
The M2X-UT manages this feat thanks to the stock dedomed XM-L2 emitter. I'm not sure how Olight is getting these emitters sans-dome, but I expect there is some sort of custom production run being done (i.e., I don't see any signs of a messy removal). But of course, the true comparables for this light are the dedome models available from a number of custom modders here. In that sense, the dedomed SR52vn from Vinh Nguyen is probably the closest match in terms of raw throw and beam profile.
As always, all dedomed emitters are somewhat green-yellow tint-shifted. How much is variable, but it is certainly noticeable on my M2X-UT sample. If you very sensitive to tint, you may want to stick with a custom modder who can bin lights into specific tint ranges. But all dedome lights will be warmer than standard cool white. You can also expect to see some artifacts in the beam, including a "donut hole" hotspot at close distances (i.e., these lights are focused for distance throw).
Build-wise, the M2X-UT is very similar to the earlier M22 and M3X lights from Olight. In some ways, it is sort of a build hybrid between those two models. Circuit performance is very good for the class.
One thing that I am glad to see now is the timed step-down on Turbo. I know timed step-downs are not popular here, but the sustained Hi mode on the original M3X could lead to primary CR123As overheating and tripping their PTC safety circuits. You can always manually restart the M2X-UT on Hi to restore initial max output.
The M2X-UT is an easy way for those curious about dedomed lights to dip a toe in the water, so to speak. Here, you get an excellent throwing light with full manufacturer's warranty. If you are looking for even greater output/throw (or more consistent tint), there are always the custom mod jobs to consider. But if you like the standard build and interface of the 1x18650/2xCR123A Olight M22, this is a way to get basically the same light in a throw monster form.
M2X-UT was provided by GoingGear.com, on behalf of Olight, for this review.