Wowtac W1 Flashlight Review

Wowtac has released the W1, a tiny 16340 EDC style light.  Read on for some testing and photos!


Official Specs and Features

Here’s a link to the official product page.

Versions

Just one version now (CW) but the box says there might also be a NW version.

Price

These are $21.99 right now on amazon – referral link!  Here’s some data Wowtac wished for me to include:

First, a 15% off coupon.

Code: 15W1ZeroAir, available until June 30, PDT.

Secondly, the following: “SHARE YOUR USING FEELING to HELP US IMPROVE.  There is a weekly flashlights GAW on WOWTAC Facebook.  WOWTAC Group.


Short Review

This is a fun little light.  Also nice low cost for a full package, too.  Even at full retail price of $26, it’s a good buy.  With the 15% off coupon above, even better.

Long Review

The Big Table

Wowtac W1
Emitter: Cree XP-G2 (CW)
Price in USD at publication time: $21.99 on amazon -referral link!
Cell: 1×16340
Turbo Runtime High Runtime
LVP? No
Switch Type: E-Switch
Quiescent Current (A): ?
On-Board Charging? Yes
Chargetime
Power off Charge Port with no Cell? Moonlight. With cell in: Moonlight.
Claimed Lumens (lm) 562
Measured Lumens (at 30s) 699 (124.4% of claim)*
Candela per Lumen 9.7
Claimed Throw (m) 126
Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s) 1002lux @ 2.519m = 6358cd
Throw (Calculated) (m) 159.5 (126.6% of claim)*
All my Wowtac reviews!

* Measurement disclaimer:  I am an amateur flashlight reviewer.  I don’t have $10,000 or even $1,000 worth of testing equipment.  I test output and such in PVC tubes!!  Please consider claims within 10% of what I measure to be perfectly reasonable (accurate, even).

What’s Included

  • Wowtac W1 Flashlight
  • Wowtac 650mAh 16340
  • Spare o-rings (2)
  • Spare charge port cover
  • Pocket clip
  • Charge cable (USB to micro-USB)
  • Manual

Package and Manual

Build Quality and Disassembly

The knurling on the body of this light is quite aggressive and provides great grip.  The build quality is good, too.

The head has a hexagonal shape, with the switch on one side and the charge port opposite.

I found the knurling to pick up all kinds of everything, and was hard to keep clean.

The head has a long brass button (typical of Wowtacs).

And the tail end of the cell tube has a big spring.

Only the head comes off, and the threads there are anodized, square cut, and not too long.  I’d call them good threads.

Size and Comps

Dimension:  68mm*24.5mm*20mm / 2.68*0.96*0.79 inch
Weight:  58g(Included Battery)

Retention and Carry

Main carry method will be the pocket clip, which attaches only on the tail end of the light.  The clip is a 2-way friction fit clip.  Two way clips aren’t my favorite clips to be honest, but on lights with only one attachment point, this does give the option of bezel up or down carry.

There’s also a lanyard loop in the tail end.  No lanyard is included.

With the two way clip allowing bezel up or down carry, this light will work fine as a hatlight.

There’s also a magnet in the tailcap, which is plenty strong to hold the light.

Power and Runtime

The W1 is powered by a single lithium ion cell – in this case a 16340.  An appropriate cell is included – a 650mAh button top.

Two runtimes follow.  The outputs aren’t regulated, and just track cell voltage on the way down.

On bench power, there was no evidence of LVP, or electronic shutoff.  In the runtime tests, the light was outputting very low but never actually shut off.  Though not documented in the manual, the indicating switch stays on while the light is on (except in Firefly).  Blue seems to indicate “full power” and red would indicate low power.  The switch does provide warning when the cell is low, so that counts as low voltage warning.

The light also has built in charging by way of a micro-USB port on the head.

The charge test looks good.  Charging is at around 1C, which is fine, and takes just under 2 hours.

During charging, the indicating switch will be red.  When charging is complete, the switch will turn blue.  If something’s wrong, the switch will light purple.

Modes and Currents

Mode Mode Claimed Output (lm) Claimed Runtime Measured Lumens Tailcap Amps
Turbo 562/215 1m/75m 699 2.01
High 197 95m 228 0.61
Medium 60 5h 55 0.15
Low 12 25h 10 0.02
Firefly 0.5 29d ~ ~0.00

PWM

Low and Turbo don’t have PWM, but the middle three modes do.  I don’t notice it, though.

For reference, here’s a baseline shot, with all the room lights off and almost nothing hitting the sensor.  And here’s the worst PWM light I have ever owned.  Also one of the very first lights I ordered directly from China!

User Interface and Operation

There’s a single switch on the W1.  It’s an indicating e-switch, with a gray translucent cover.

Here’s a UI table!

State Action Result
Off Click On (memory, LMH only)
Off Hold Firefly
Firefly Hold Lock
Lock Hold Unlock
Any Double Click Turbo
Any Triple Click Strobe
On Click Off
On Hold Mode cycle (LMH only)
On for some time (“a while”, 30ish seconds) Hold Low

That’s a similar UI to other Wowtacs (A4, A5, and A6 for example) and also many Thrunites (TC20 for example), except for access to strobe.  I love that fact mainly because I like the UI in general – very simple but enough features, and easy to access low and high.

LED and Beam

The emitter in this tiny light is a Cree XP-G2.  There’s a tiny reflector, which has an orange peel texture.  The beam is surprisingly concentrated with a fairly tight spot.

These beamshots are always with the following settings:  f8, ISO100, 0.3s shutter, and manual 5000K exposure.

Tint vs BLF-348 (Killzone 219b version)

I compare everything to the Killzone 219b BLF-348, because it’s inexpensive and has the best tint!

Conclusion

What I like

  • Meets (really “exceeds”) specifications on throw and output
  • Complete package
  • Included cell is good
  • Nice hotspot
  • Magnet is nice and strong

What I don’t like

  • CW tint.  NW would be better.
  • Knurling doesn’t need to be so aggressive for me

Notes

  • This light was provided by Wowtac for review. I was not paid to write this review.
  • This content originally appeared at zeroair.org.  Please visit there for the best experience!
  • For flashlight related patches, stickers, and gear, head over to PhotonPhreaks, another site where I write!
  • Shop my amazon.com store for the best lights!
  • Whether or not I have a coupon for this light, I do have a bunch of coupons!!  Have a look at my spreadsheet for BangGood and GearBest coupons. Please subscribe and get notifications when the sheet is edited!!

Author: zeroair

1 thought on “Wowtac W1 Flashlight Review

  1. I have read and seen Vid reviews of these small single cell lights in Lumens that is not fit for them. They should have the low- mid-high and the high should be 300-350 lumens . I do have the OLIGHTs (3) S10 Baton a (2) S1 Baton (1) S1R Baton H1 & H1R Nova that’s the smalls .

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