Flashlight Review: Olight Marauder Mini
Updated: Dec 5, 2022
This review is of the Olight Marauder Mini, a more compact 7,000 lumen version of the well regarded Marauder 2 torch/flashlight, with flood/throw beam switching and even RGB LEDs.
The Olight Marauder Mini was purchased with my own funds.
This review is written from a light painting/night photographer and flashlight enthusiast perspective.
Construction and Design
Olight is a very popular consumer brand of flashlights, that has gained an almost cult following due to its online presence, marketing strategies, and regularly updated range of flashlights.
The Olight Marauder Mini is a medium sized 7,000 lumen flashlight, with flood, spot/throw, and Red, Green, Blue (RGB) LEDs. It is a roughly similar size to many multiple battery "soda can" lights such as the classic BLF Q8, yet it uses just a single, proprietary 32650 battery. This means that it has a slimmer body than other flashlights in this class which is more comfortable to hold. Head diameter is 65.6mm, body diameter is 44mm, and length is 130mm. Weight including battery is 470g. Included accessories include the battery, USB-A to magnetic charging port cable, lanyard, holster, and manual. The light is available in either a black, orange, or midnight blue body. The light's RRP is US$199, though Olight often have many sales where it will be available for less or with other flashlights.
The light has an outer ring of 6 white light LEDs with floody optics, 3 RGB LEDs (one for each colour), and a centrally located white light LED with throwy/spot optics.
The grip is comfortable to hold, with on/off switch, rotary dial, indicator lights, and flood/spot switches on top. A silicone grip covers the sides and underside. The light is rated IPX8, and had no issues after a walk in heavy rain.
The tail of the flashlight can be unscrewed to allow access to the proprietary Olight ORB-326C65 32650 Li-ion battery, which is a similar size to a D cell battery. This has a capacity of 6500mAh. I much prefer single batteries like this in flashlights as it removes the risk of potentially dangerous unbalanced battery voltages in multiple battery "soda can" flashlights. Unlike the larger Marauder 2 which has nearly double the battery capacity, and many 26650 based flashlights, there is no powerbank functionality. A full charge using the Olight MCC3 magnetic charging connector took nearly 5 hours. The charger shows red when charging, and turns green at approximately 90% charge. Charging terminated correctly at 4.18V. Low voltage protection was tested to kick in at a rather high 3.3V.
As this light is a lumen monster flashlight for illumination purposes, it is not surprisingly too large for light painting systems and backlight scanners, and won't be reviewed with these use cases. There is also no compatible diffuser for omni-directional lighting. The Marauder Mini can be mounted on a tripod using a Small Rig Super Clamp.
The Olight Marauder Mini has a single combined push switch and rotary dial, plus a toggle switch to move between flood and spot. The user interface (UI) is as follows:
Unlock (after 10s) - rotate dial 90 degrees in either direction.
Off > On (memorized flood/throw mode) - single click.
Change brightness levels - rotate dial (clockwise increase, anti-clockwise decrease).
On/Off > L7 - double click.
On/Off > Strobe - triple click.
On > Red > Green > Blue - press and hold for one second.
Flood > Throw - toggle switch.
I generally like the user interface including last mode memory for all white light modes. However lack of mode memory for RGB modes is a major omission, as if you want to use a coloured mode you generally don't want to have to cycle through a white mode first.
I like the safety aspect of the rotate to unlock, but I also find it a bit of an annoyance if you need to turn the light on quickly. I think the lockout time should be longer than 10secs. At least Olight have got rid of the proximity sensor, and I hope this trend follows on the Warrior/Warrior Mini line for which the proximity sensor prevents use in light painting tools.
The light also had 7 step battery charge indicator, and 7 step brightness level indicators around the rotary dial. The light vibrates when the rotary dial is moved to L1 or maximum allowed brightness. Once the thermal limiting has stepped the brightness down, the highest modes will become unavailable, so for example after L6 stepped down at 23 minutes, L6 and L7 are not available.
Brightness, Output, and Runtime
The Olight Marauder Mini has an outer ring of 9 LEDs and central throwy/spot LED with TIR optics. The outer ring has 6 floody white light LEDs, as well as a relatively bright Red, Green, and Blue LEDs. The actual LED types are unknown, though the flood LEDs appears to resemble Osram Osconiq P 3737 LEDs (AKA Osram P9). The central spotlight LED which is probably a Rayten RT-5050 LED, creates a focussed circular spot beam instead of the usual square beam. The RGB emitters (maybe also from Osram?) and are approximately 620nm Orange-Red, 530nm Green, and 470nm Blue. The Blue is actually Blue, and not a purple-ish Deep/Forensic Blue like on many other RGB lights. The RGB beam profile is relatively throwy compared to most RGB lights.
The claimed maximum brightness and runtimes for each mode are:
L7 Flood - 7,000lm/172mins.
L6 Flood - 3,200lm/190mins.
L5 Flood - 1,600lm/185mins.
L4 Flood - 800lm/340mins.
L3 Flood - 400lm/650mins.
L2 Flood - 200lm/21hr.
L1 Flood - 100lm/35hr30mins.
L7 Spot - 900lm/250mins.
L6 Spot - 700lm/260mins.
L5 Spot - 500lm/270mins.
L4 Spot - 300lm/7hr20mins.
L3 Spot - 200lm/11hr30mins.
L2 Spot - 100lm/21hr30mins.
L1 Spot - 50hr/43hr30mins.
Red L4 200lm/340mins, L3 150lm/550mins, L2 100lm 16hr30mins, L1 50lm/30hr.
Green L4 220lm/300mins, L3 180lm/510mins, L2 140lm/14hr, L1 55lm/17hr.
Blue L4 120lm/300mins, L3 100lm/430mins, L2 80lm 10hr30mins, L1 55lm/17hr.
Note: Flood, spot, or multiple RGB channels cannot be used simultaneously.
As per all high powered flashlights, and as clearly stated in the manual, most of the higher modes will step down in brightness. However, the sustained brightness is extremely impressive for the size of this light, which was expected as Olight use very efficient LED drivers. Whilst there are smaller lights with higher maximum brightness, a comparison after 10 minutes runtime will show the Olight Marauder to be considerably brighter than any other light in its class.
Testing on L7 Flood, showed that maximum brightness was slightly less than claimed at 6,500lm. Peak beam intensity is 26Kcd. The flood beam is like a wall of light that can illuminate over 320m. With 6 LEDs, the floody beam is slightly softer than single LED flashlights. Max brightness (within 10%) lasted for an impressive 4 minutes before brightness step-down to a still impressive 1,850lm. Many competing lights can't even sustain their max brightness for 1 minute! L6 was tested to start at 2,900lm, and impressively the light sustained more than 2,700lm until step-down to 1,000lm at 23 minutes. L5 ran quite happily at 1,600lm for the first hour of its runtime. L3 ran at 400lm for most of its 10 hour runtime, which is more than adequate brightness for night hikes. I found tested runtimes to be within +/-10% of claims stated in the manual.
The sustained brightness is very useful for night photography where bright lighting may need to be on continuously for 10-15 minutes, for example a backlit portrait session. Compared with other similar sized lights, a few slightly smaller 70 CRI flashlights, and the much smaller Lume Cube 2.0, sustained brightness at 15 minutes is approximately:
Olight Marauder Mini (32650) - 2,700lm.
Noctigon DM1.12 (21700) - 750lm.
BLF Q8 original (4x18650) - 1,500lm.
Sofirn Q8 Pro (4x18650) - 1,000lm (default temp calibration).
Sofirn SP36 Pro (3x18650) - 1,000lm (default temp calibration).
Thrunite T20 V2.0 and Sofirn SP33S (26650) - 1,700lm.
Convoy M3-C (26650) - 1,450lm.
Lume Cube 2.0 (internal battery) - 650lm.
Testing on L7 Spot resulted in an estimated peak beam intensity of 99Kcd, or 629m throw, which is pretty good for a flood/throw light, though outclassed by LEPs or large dedicated thrower lights. L7 Spot maximum brightness was sustained for 20 minutes until brightness step-down. There is minimal spill beam with the circular spot optics.
The CCT, CRI, and Tint (DUV) were measured with an Opple Light Master 3 Pro:
L7 Flood - 5862k CCT, 69.9 Ra CRI, +0.0053 Duv.
L1 Flood - 5691k CCT, 68.8 Ra CRI, +0.0069 Duv.
L7 Throw - 6406k CCT, 64.8 Ra CRI, +0.0123 Duv.
L1 Flood - 6274k CCT, 63.3 Ra CRI, +0.0169Duv.
For the flood emitters, CCT is what I would call coolish white as opposed to cool white. Tint is very neutral, with slight green tint (+ve Duv) noticeable on lower modes. CRI is the standard 70 CRI fare, so reds and browns are not rendered as well as rarer >90 CRI flashlights. The spot emitter won't win any awards for CCT, CRI, or tint, but does its job.
There was no Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) detected which is good.. The light made clicking sounds on higher brightness levels, which may be a thermostat inside? In all of the higher modes, whilst the head of the light was hot to touch, the light's body and grip remained only warm.
Personally, I would like to see a high CRI version of this light. Whilst there would be a 30-40% reduction in brightness, Acebeam have already shown that there is a market for high-CRI lumen monsters like the X50 CRI 2.0. There is also potential for Olight to use the Maurauder Mini concept for a light with variable warm to cool white CCT, as per some of Olight's camping lanterns.
Very good maximum brightness/size (L7 mode).
Excellent sustained brightness/size (L5 and L6 mode).
Flood, throw, and RGB options.
Easy to use user interface.
Last mode memory for flood and throw modes.
Relatively bright and throwy RGB output.
Comfortable to hold.
No proximity sensor.
Can be mounted on a tripod (with clamp).
Blue beam is Blue instead of Deep Blue.
Lock out/rotate ring to unlock - good for safety, but can be a minor annoyance.
Flood/spot cannot be used simultaneously.
No last mode memory for RGB modes (you have to access RGB via white light mode).
No high CRI option.
For consumers - the Olight Marauder Mini is an excellent flashlight for those who want an easy to use, safe flashlight, with either very high brightness or long runtimes at lower brightness levels. The maximum brightness of 6.500lm on L7 is enough for 99% of flashlight requirements. 10 hours of 400lm runtime on L3 makes this a great light for night hikes, camping, search and rescue, or for people with large properties. The ability to switch between flood and throw is very useful, as are the RGB options.
For light painting/night photographers - the Olight Marauder Mini is an excellent choice for when you need lots of floody sustained lumens without the light dimming rapidly like most other flashlights (>6,000lm for 4 mins, >2,700lm for 23 mins, or >1,800lm for 60mins). For backlighting, it is up to x10 brighter than a Lume Cube. The throw beam allows for more controlled illumination of distant objects. However, it is let down by no last mode memory for RGB, no diffuser, and no high CRI emitter options.
Overall, the Olight Marauder is highly recommended, and is in my opinion one of Olight's most compelling flashlights. It is no surprise that initial sales figures have been very high. The Marauder Mini concept has a lot of potential in the future if Olight also consider other configurations such as warm/cool white switching.
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