On The Road M6 Flashlight Review

Preface

I received this On The Road M6 – 3C light from GearBest for review. Thanks to GearBest for sending it, and providing the coupon code below for you to purchase it!

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Coupon Code

GearBest provided me with a nice coupon for this On The Road M6 – 3C SIMPLE PACK

Coupon price: $24.59. Coupon code: M63C.


On The Road M6 Official Specs:

Column 1 Column 2
Lamp Beads Cree XM-L2 U2
Beads Number 1
Lumens Range 500-1000Lumens
Luminous Flux 1000Lm
Luminous Intensity 4900cd
Color Temperature 1A 6500-7000K; 3C 4800-5000K; 5C 3800-4000K
Switch Type Side Clicky
Feature Anti-Roll Rugged Design,Lightweight,Overheating Protection,Pocket Clip,Power Indicator,Reverse Polarity Protection,Stainless Steel Bezel
Function Camping,EDC,Exploring,Hiking,Household Use,Night Riding,Walking
Battery Type 18650
Battery Quantity 1 x 18650 battery (not included)
Mode 8(Turbo – High – Mid – Low – Ultra Low – SOS – Strobe – Location Beacon)
Mode Memory Yes
Waterproof Standard IPX-8 Standard Waterproof
Working Voltage 3.7V
Reflector Aluminum Textured Orange Peel Reflector
Lens Toughened Ultra-clear Glass Lens with Anti-reflective Coating
Impact Resistance 2M
Beam Distance 150-200m
Body Material Aerospace-grade Aluminum Alloy
Available color Titanium Grey

The above section contains the manufacturer’s descriptions and claims, not my impressions or results.


On The Road M6 Short Review:

A nice XM-L2 light, with a slightly wonky UI, but meets the claims it makes. I think it’d make a good gift light.

Long Review:

What’s Included

  • On The Road M6
  • Padded cloth pouch
  • Lanyard
  • Two spare o-rings
  • Pocket clip – installed

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Pictures

Pictures? Here ya go.

Build Quality, Durability, and Disassembly

This seems to be a sturdy light, and also well built. The threads are square cut and nicely lubed. The bezel is press fit so would be difficult to remove (much like many Olight and Zebralights). The head and tail both unscrew off the battery tube, which I find to be great (having lost at least one light to a corroded battery, which was unremovable). The light will screw together in exactly the wrong formation, but it will not work that way. (I’m not sure why – the battery tube has an unanodized face on both ends.)

I have no reason to believe this light isn’t durable. I’ve carried it extensively and that amount of wear can be seen very slightly

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in the anodizing. With IXP8 waterproofing and 2m drop resistance, it should stand up to normal wear and abuse. Springs on the head and tail should keep the cell protected from drops, too. Speaking of the springs, they’re nice gold coated springs, and of course the spring on the tailcap holds in a magnet.

Disassembled is as described above: head and tail come off, but more than that would require quite a bit of motivation. The bezel and ring that holds on the button are press fit (possibly unscrew, but I couldn’t make that happen). The driver

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also looks to be press fit in as well. The tailcap has a nice gold plated spring over a magnet.

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The battery tube

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is directional – the light will only work with the head and tail on the correct end, even if they do screw in both ways.

Package and Manual

The package is my favorite kind: cardboard.

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There’s a QR code

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on the back. Inside is more cardboard (which again, I like). The light itself is inside a little pouch.

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An unusual touch, but not bad.

Got some bad news about the manual,

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however. Front

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and back

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are in Chinese. Much of what you’d like to know is probably assumable based on the diagrams. But I’d like to see a full English manual – or at the very least, a UI diagram.

Retention

The M6 comes with a pocket cliphttp://i.imgur.com/nA2nE5e.jpg

installed. It’s not really a deep carry clip but it holds the light securely. The package (even the “simple pack”) comes with a lanyard. The tailcap has a hole

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for the lanyard. There’s also the fancy little pouch which I would imagine to be completely useless – unless you often carry your light in a bad, in which case – this would be perfect!

Power

A single 18650 (protected or unprotected) works in this light. The working voltage is only listed as “3.7V”, so two cr123a’s won’t work and would probably burn out the emitter. The light does not have any recharge ports.

User Interface and Operation

There’s one white silicone button for operating the M6. It has the very unusual operation of requiring a long press to turn on. I can’t think offhand of any other light with that setup. Some allow using a long press for a specific feature of the modes (most often moonlight), but that’s not what happens here.

Technically the long press actuates memory – so whatever mode you used last (except turbo) will come on. As I’m sure you all know, this is my least favorite type of memory.

Double clicking the button (and it is an actual click with this switch – it’s quite nicely clicky) leads to turbo. Clicking from turbo enters regular modes after first stepping out of turbo to high.

Which is all to say, once the light is on, the UI is pretty typical. Just that *long press* to turn on… They do promote this as a means to prevent accidental activation, and I *can* say I haven’t had accidental activation with this light yet.

One note about the click since this light is clearly [let’s call it] an…homage to the Olight (I guess it could be a few) but probably something like the S20. The click is not like an Olight click. Olight click is positive but soft. This click is positive but very clicky (almost has the sound of a Bic Clic stick).

Another thing about the button of the clicky, is that it’s an indicating button

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When a cell reaches 10% capacity, it begins to blink red. As with all button indicators that do just one thing, it seems quite underutilized! But it’s a nice feature.

Triple click (from off or no) enters the “special” modes – strobes. There are three types of strobe. Once you are in strobe, a single click moves through them: fast strobe, beacon, SOS.

LED and Beam

Inside is a Cree XM-L2 U2 under a orange peel reflector.

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The emitter is nicely centered and the OP reflector is nice quality.

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I haven’t been able to decide what I think about the tint on this beam. I think it’s slightly greenish

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but it’s also not that bad. When compared to something like the rosy BLF-348’s, sure it looks green. But when compared to something cool, it’s pleasantly not-cool.

The beam also stays tight for longer than I’d have guessed, with the domed emitter and orange peel reflector. Not that it’s a thrower, but it does do a fine job.

Beamshots

Flashlight 0.3″, f/8, ISO 100, 5000k
On The Road M6 XM L2 U2 – 3C
Imalent DN12
Skilhunt H03
Olight R50 Seeker
Convoy L6 (5000k)
Olight S1A Baton 14500AA
Convoy C8 XPL-HI
JETBeam JET-I MK
Klarus Mi7
BLF-348 AB
Manker E14 
Astrolux S41 
XintD C8 XP-G2 S4

That’s big list of beamshots, shown here just for your sake to keep you from having to search for one you might be interested.

Runtime and Lux

I apologize for not having this graph ready, but my runtime machine is broken. I’ll do my best to get a graph up later.

Claimed runtime is as follows:

Mode Lumens
Turbo 1000
High 780
Mid 380
Low 100
Ultra Low 10

This is my first time using a lux meter, but these numbers seem reasonable.

Model Emitter Lux (Measured) At (meters) Candela (Calculated) in cd Throw (Calculated) (meters) Throw (Claimed)
On The Road M6 XM-L2 U2 4000 1 4000 126.5m 150-200m

Size

Here

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you can see the OTR M6 versus some similar lights (in this case directly beside a Convoy S2+. The OTR is quite a bit smaller! It’s right between the other side switch 18650s in this picture.

Maybe you’re more of an emitter kind of person…. This one’s for you.

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Random Comparisons….

I’d love to be able to compare this directly to the corresponding Olight, but I don’t have the S20 or whatever else matches up. I do have an S1 though. The switch is very similar – the OTR is more clicky and “thicker” feeling, but it works great. The feel isn’t quite as good in hand but for a light that’s less than half the price, it feels quality-enough.

Conclusion

What I like

  • Beam profile
  • Entire package is great
  • Price
  • Side switch works well and even without electronic lockout, I never had an accidental activation

What I don’t like

  • Long press for on
  • Slightly greenish tint
  • Thin anodizing
  • Underutilized indicator switch

Competitive Options

There are probably a ton of things that could be mentioned here. Most notably of course would be the Olight S20-L2, with which the M6 shares a size, shape, accent, emitter, and most everything. The M6 is also very similar to the S2. Both of those are twice as much as the M6, but they also both work with cr123as as well at 18650s.

Final Thoughts

For the price being offered, this is a nice little light. I don’t love the long-press-for-on but everything else about the light is just about right for an 18650 light with an XM-L2 emitter.


Parting Shot

I don’t know. Eh, whatever.

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Notes

  • This light was provided by GearBest.com for the purposes of this review. I was not paid for this review.
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