Flashlights are everywhere. You can buy them at the dollar store. You can spend a couple hundred dollars on one that has a built-in weather band radio. But when it comes to being able to rely on a flashlight when you need it, oftentimes the one you’ll use the most is somewhere in the middle.
Wuben has made a name for itself by making flashlights. Price-wise, they’re all right in the middle. But when it comes down to what these lights produce in terms of output, ease of use, and innovative features, they’re up there with some of the best flashlights — in some cases, they might even be a few steps ahead.
Over the summer, Wuben launched a Kickstarter campaign for its Lightok X3 Owl EDC Flashlight. Having already successfully funded its X-0 Knight and the X2 EDC flashlights through crowdfunding, the X3 was destined to follow suit. Each new Wuben flashlight has been improving upon the last. Design-wise, you can see the evolution.
Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I like shiny new things. I like technology. I like to tinker. But there’s a lot more going into my decision to test the X3. Things like a 180-degree rotating head, a wireless charging box with a USB-C cable/lanyard, an LED display, and a magnetic base all caught my attention and kept me interested the entire time I was using this flashlight.
In short: Excelling in both form and function, the Wuben Lightok X3 Owl EDC Flashlight is designed to light up a lot of nights without the need for a dedicated recharge. The rotating head, LED display, and creative design elements like magnets and a pocket/pack clip make this little light a lot more useful than your average torch. It won’t replace all of your flashlights, nor is it perfect for every situation. But it’s versatile enough that as an EDC flashlight, you’ll find uses for it where you wouldn’t expect to.
- X3 Dimensions 2.76” x 1.38” x 0.83”
- X3 Case Dimensions 3.35” x 1.85” x 1.57”
- X3 Weight 2.3 oz.*
- X3 Case Weight 3.6 oz.
- IP Protection IP65
- Impact Resistance 3.4’ (1m)
- LED White Light – Samsung LH351D / Red Light – Luminus 620nm
- Beam Distance 335’ (102m)
- X3 Battery 1,000 mAh
- X3 Case Battery 3,000 mAh
- *Wuban claims the weight of the X3 is 70 g (2.5 oz.), but it's actually 65 g (2.3 oz.).
- The case is also a power bank for other electronic devices
- Dual LED light colors (red and white)
- Wireless charging in the included case
- USB-C lanyard
- The compact size
- The plastic case will never last as long as the light itself
WUBEN Lightok X3 Owl EDC Flashlight: Review
Output and Runtime
- Low: 1 lumen | 50 hrs.
- Medium: 50 lumens | 6 hrs.
- High: 150 lumens | 2 hrs.
- Turbo: 200-700 lumens | 1.5 hrs.-30 sec.
- Strobe: 700 lumens | No runtime given
- SOS: 150 lumens | No runtime given
- Low: 1 lumen | 30 hrs.
- Turbo: 30-80 lumens | 2 hrs.-30 sec.
Design and Features: Lightok X3 Owl EDC Flashlight
The Lightok X3 Owl EDC Flashlight is a small form factor, multifunction magnetic flashlight with a 180-degree pivoting head. It has a pocket clip, as well as magnets in the base (more on this later). This allows for the X3 to function in a lot of different settings as a flashlight, worklight, and beyond.
The X3 also comes with an IP65 dustproof and waterproof rating so it can be used in all conditions. While there is no indication that it can be submerged in water, it is also impact-resistant.
Battery and Charge
Similar to Bluetooth earbuds, the X3 comes in a rechargeable case that also acts as a 3,000mAh portable battery. According to Wuben, the combination of the battery in the X3 as well as the rechargeable battery in its case has the capability of lasting a whole week without needing to recharge the case. Additionally, because the case is a battery, it can charge your other electronics — a nice bonus feature.
The lanyard included with the case is actually a double-ended USB-C charging cable for charging the case battery. In writing this review, I found out that it also has a built-in Lightning Adapter for iPhones. The lanyard also has a centimeter ruler printed on it. But don’t worry — I converted the ruler for you already — it’s 9.75 inches, in total.
Onboard Light Functions
In terms of onboard light functions, the X3 has a white LED light that can produce up to 700 lumens. It adjusts from 1 lumen, to 50 lumens, and then to 150 lumens. The blinding 700-lumen brightness setting can be accessed by quickly pressing the function button twice when on the 150-lumen setting.
Pressing the function button three times quickly sends the X3 into a blinding strobe (700 lumens) setting, which can be decreased to a slower SOS (150 lumens) setting by pressing the function button three more times. One press of the button turns the X3 off.
Additionally, there is a red LED light with a 1-lumen or 80-lumen setting. Red light is great for reading maps and navigating at night when you don’t want to be seen or disturb anyone or anything around you.
There is a small LED screen on the pivoting head of the X3. That indicates what brightness level you are on and how much battery life you have left.
The light can be used as a soft light when it’s in the case and charging. But you can also pivot the head to aim out of the top of the case lid, and it will function as it would on its own. In this configuration, however, you cannot access the controls.
The Lightok X3 Owl EDC Flashlight itself is made from impact-resistant plastic and metal, as well as all the electronics and bulbs. The case is made of plastic with an opaque lid and a rechargeable battery base.
There were four colors to choose from during the Kickstarter campaign. I went with the translucent green body and black head combo, which comes in an old-school camouflage case.
Aside from the fact that it acts as a power pack to charge the Wuben Lightok X3 Owl EDC and other portable electronics, the case itself doesn’t seem durable enough to make it through the long haul. I feel like it could either separate or break after a couple of good bumps. But the flashlight itself is fantastic. It’s durable feeling, well-weighted, and the head’s pivoting action is so smooth, it can be done with one hand.
Like all multifunction lights, there’s a lot going on in a little package. With there only being a single button, I am sure there are more particular button sequences that I’ll figure out over time.
But I am really stoked about the multifunction 3,000mAh power bank in a small form factor. It’s become a mainstay of my pack. Yes, I am excited that it will recharge the X3, but knowing that it can recharge my iPhone 14 Pro two or three times is also awesome.
In the Field
Anyone who has owned a multifunction headlamp or flashlight knows that there’s going to be a bit of a learning curve to operating it. Whether you need to press and hold a button for a specific length of time or a certain amount of times, you need to cycle through brightness levels and functions. The X3 is no different. But it’s not bad.
I have a Black Diamond headlamp that I love, but it either gives me a heck of a time going from white to red light or locking. I’m a pretty technical guy, and in the last 2 years, I have resolved that this is just one of those things I have to contend with.
The X3 is not that. In fact, I figured out the button sequence within a few minutes before I hit the trail. It’s fairly intuitive without any instructions.
Charging and Illumination
I bought the X3 to hang off my pack strap, which is where the belt clip and pivoting head come in handy. Since I started using it in August, there have only been a couple of times where I have used it in my hand. It’s easy to adjust and control from the pack strap. If I had to take a guess, I have probably put in over 30 hours on the trail with it, without recharging the case.
Each time you reinsert the X3 into the case, it starts charging. The case also knows when to stop, so it won’t overcharge the X3’s battery and deplete its overall life.
In regard to a beam, the X3 lives somewhere in between a spotlight and a floodlight. When you opt to use a light like this strapped to your pack, you run into losing the “look and light” feature of a headlamp.
If I want to change the direction of where the light is shining, I need to turn my body or carry it in my hand. But, honestly, after using headlamps on the trail, exclusively, for over 25 years, the change isn’t really that noticeable.
Out of all of that, however, where the X3 really proved its worth was one night under the truck. I broke one of the exhaust mounts out on the trail and ran the risk of snapping my tailpipe off of the muffler. With the magnetic base of the X3 flashlight, I was able to stick it to the frame of the truck and shine the light on my work area.
I had pulled over to give myself more room under the truck, but I didn’t want to run the risk of burning myself. And I didn’t. The X3 allowed me to strap the tailpipe back in place. A month later the pipe strap is still holding in place. It’s solid work for someone working on the trail in the dark. This magnetic flashlight really pulled its weight that night.
Changes Made in Production
Once they successfully funded their Kickstarter, Wuban made some changes to the final X3 that weren’t shipped out to backers.
First off, the brand changed the name. It was the “X3 EDC Flashlight.” Now, it’s the Lightok X3 Owl EDC Flashlight. Secondly, the charging box, which was plastic, is now aluminum. And lastly, the price has gone up to $110.
The price jump is nearly double what I paid for the X3 during the Kickstarter campaign. However, Wuban projected that the X3 would cost $89 at retail. I haven’t experienced any issues with the plastic case. But the upgrade to an aluminum charging case is worth the $21 increase, in my opinion.
WUBEN Lightok X3 Owl EDC Flashlight: Conclusion
I try to make sure that every bit of gear I carry has more than one function. Obviously, some stuff is designed to do one thing — like a water filter. But a flashlight that can be used to charge your phone and other electronics? That also clips onto backpacks and pockets and has magnets to stick to metal objects? It’s got some major appeal. As does the durable build, multiple light settings, and addition of Lightok X3 Owl EDC Flashlight’s red light.
I’m not completely sold on the durability of the X3’s case, but Wuben seems to be making improvements to address that already.
What was a surprise to me was how much 1 lumen can illuminate. I don’t think I have ever owned a flashlight or headlamp that had such a low setting. But, 1 lumen was bright enough to get me down miles of trail — once my eyes adjusted to the dark.
There’s a world of innovative products out there designed to light up the night. But I think Wuben is an up-and-comer worth keeping an eye on. And this Lightok X3 Owl EDC Flashlight is one of its best products so far.