In this review guide, let's take a look at the brand NEW Olight BALDR Pro.
It's the next generation light from the Olight Valkyrie PL Pro & we thank Olight for sending us this light for review.
As more people are buying guns for personal defense, it's important for people understand that a weapon mounted light gives the user a lot more tactical advantages during day time & low light which we will discuss below.
There are tons of products already available on the market, and the Olight BALDR Pro is a great option for people looking for a light under $200 & provides great illumination capability.
In this review guide, let's check out Olight BALDR Pro's core specs, beam pattern, laser-quality, control ergonomics, compatibility, and battery performance.
Let's check it out...
Olight BALDR Pro Core Specs
- Beam Distance: 260 meters
- Max. Performance: 1350 lumens
- Candela: 16900 cd
- Reflector: TIR
- Laser: Class 3R, 5mW Green Laser
- Strobe: Yes
- Switch: Side Switch
- Battery: CR123A Li-Ion
- Waterproof: IPX4
- Weight: 4.55 oz
- Head Diameter (in): 1.44"
- Length (in): 3.3 in
- LED: High-Performance Neutral White LED
- Price: $159.95
What's Included In The Packaging
Olight does a great job wrapping its product in good quality packaging. It feels premium on the outside, and when you open it up everything is nicely packed.
The Olight BALDR Pro comes with the following:
- BALDR Pro x 1
- 3V 1600mAh CR123A Battery x 2
- Picatinny (Mil-std-1913) Rail Mount x 1
- Rail Screw x 2
- T6/T8 Socket Head Wrench x 1
- Adjustable screw x 2
- User Manual x 1
Who Should Use The Olight BALDR Pro
The Olight BADLR Pro is great for personal defense, range use & hunting. For the price, it's a great option for anyone looking for a high performing light under $200.
If you're not depended on your light for professional use full time, the Olight BADLR Pro is a great light to go on your home defense night stand pistol.
Beam Pattern, Lumens & Candela
For a light under $200, the Olight BALDR Pro can output 1350 lumens to provide bright illumination, but it's ability to output up to 16900 candela to punch the light beam as far as 80-100 meters effectively while maintaining the hot spot is impressive.
The user can also switch the lumen intensity down to 300 lumens if desired.
Under ambient light or fog, the BADLR Pro can still illuminate 25-50 yards with a without any problem.
Strong candela intensity means the light can punch far and maintain its hot spot that is critical in tactical situations where the shooter needs a focused hot light beam to illuminate an low light area in order to positively identify what's there.
At about 15 - 25 yards, the hard edge corona hot spot of the light stretches about 11 -16 feet in diameter to illuminate the size of the human body from the head to toe. If the person is a threat the defender can quickly spot if he/she has a weapon in hand or not.
A good weapon light starts with great candela output, even though people mostly look at the lumen intensity as the number 1 purchase decision factor.
The light industry tends to use lumen intensity rating as the number 1 way to market their products, but at the end of the day, candela matters.
Anything over 15k candela for a pistol light is already 10X better than anything that's out there today.
Light Beam Color Tint
The BLADR Pro features a Neutral White color tint light beam, which is what we want as a tactical flashlight. Cool tint beams that outputs a bluish hue have serious disadvantages for tactical users in low light.
So let us explain:
Problems With Cool Tint Beam
Most tactical flashlight has a cool tint beam to output higher lumen intensity while casting a blue hue in low light. This causes certain colors under natural ambient light to look different and sometimes indistinguishable.
As we mentioned above, lumen intensity is the first thing consumers look at when shopping for a weapon light, so if marketing department wants to sell more lights they go for lights with a cool tint.
For military & law enforcement, it's absolutely important for the officers & operators to accurately identify colors in low light conditions when using weapon lights.
A person wearing a red shirt appears to be wearing a black shirt under a cool tint beam can create mis-identification, skewed decision making & potential mistakes.
Why Neutral White Tint Is The Best For Tactical Applications
- Most accurate color rendition in low light
- Easier on the eyes when punching the light beam through fog
- Minimized glare when using in fog
- Better color contrast under low light
The light has a toggle switch underneath the light can change the mode of the light:
- Light only
- Light & laser
- Laser only
The toggle switch feels very positive and there is nothing to complain about.
The built-in 5mW green laser has an effective range up to 70 yards. It's bright and easy to pick up during day light and low light.
The laser maintains zero after 100 rounds of 45ACP, and we have yet seen any accuracy issue, and we will update this test results in the future as we go.
The only thing we didn't like about the laser is its two adjustment screws because they don't give the user any positive feedback and they feel very loose.
Is the laser necessary?
Based on our experience, the laser is a helpful training tool for new shooters to perfect their steady trigger pull while monitoring how much the laser pointer is moving.
However, since laser accuracy is inconsistent we don't recommend using the laser for real life personal defense situations.
Activation Switch Ergonomics
The light activation on the Olight BALDR Pro is the exactly the same as the one on the Valkyrie PL 2. The light has good control ergonomics for pistol use as long as the buttons are close to the trigger guard and the user can easily reach the button.
Ambidexous control allows both lefties and righties to operate the light without any problem.
When you press & hold the button all the way down, then release gives you the momentary on.
When you quickly tap the switch the light stays constant on.
The Olight BALDR Pro doesn't feature a magnetic charge port because the addition of the laser device under the light. The light uses 2 CR123A batteries that has a run time of:
- 1350 Lumens - 1+115minutes-Laser on 1+120minutes-Laser off
- 300 Lumens - 210minutes-Laser on 240minutes-Laser off
- Laser Only - ~ 4 hours
The light is made with aerospace grade aluminum and the overall feel and finish is very solid, however, the waterproof rating is only IPX4, which is still waterproof but the IPX4 also means no water submersion protection.
Other than that the mount, the lens bezel and the battery access door all feel very solid based on our testing.
The mount comes with a universal M1913 rail tab and a Glock rail tab. The QD lever is the same as other Olight weapon lights and the screw tightness can be adjusted with a screw.
When the light is mounted on pistols, there is no need to worry about the light falling off the gun during recoil...it's just impossible.
The only down side of the QD mount is that it has sharp edges that rubs against the user's thumb on a pistol, and it can snag onto a piece of clothing string if not being careful.
The Olight BALDR Pro is a great affordable pistol weapon light option for people looking for a Surefire X400 alike pistol light under $200. It can be mounted on most full size railed handgun frame & picatinny rail system.
The lumen & candela output is outstanding for range use, force on force training & home defense. The hot spot & spill is bright & wide to illuminate the surrounding areas especially in an indoor environment to positively identify things in the dark without any problems.
If used on a long gun, the BALDR Pro is effective for illuminating up to 70 yards without the beam dimmed down.
Even though the BALDR Pro isn't designed for full time professional use, the light has not failed once even after some reasonable drop test. It's a high quality light on a budget to go on a night stand gun & conceal carry.
The laser is a cool feature added to the light, but its not a must have feature. Based on our comparison with the Olight Valkyrie PL 2, having a rechargeable battery system is worth more than the laser.