In 2016, I added the Outlite 501B to my arsenal of flashlights. The intent was always to test and review the flashlight, little did I know I would still own it today. After a year and a half of ownership and abuse, I am finally ready to write the well overdue review!
Anatomy of the Outlite 501B
The Outlite 501b is very comparable in size to the Ultrafire WF-502B, measuring in at a total length of 5″. No sliding focus on this flashlight, so only one length to worry about. The flashlight is 1″ in diameter around the body with the widest diameter around the head of 1.25″. Right in the middle of the average size we reviewed last year and this year.
The Outlite 501b weighs in at 4.3oz with the battery installed. It is 15% lighter than the Ultrafire wf-502b, and feels a little less sturdy. The casing of the handle is made of thinner aluminum which reduces the overall weight. This is a pro and con of this flashlight because lighter means easier, but less versatile for self defense.
Also similar to the wf-502b, the Outlite uses the 18650 rechargeable battery (I tested with a 2000 mAh battery from my Ultrafire). During the amperage test, the Outlite 501b used about 1.14 amps on high mode. Combined with the 2000MaH battery, the battery life is about 1.75 hours. This is on the lower end of our average run time because of the higher amperage draw.
The Outlite has an included carry strap which I could have done without but came anyway. No belt clip on this model. The carry strap is useful for toting this flashlight on a backpack or swinging it as a weapon.
Light Output Tests
The Outlite 501b uses a single focus beam without a sliding lens. That means, near or far, this flashlight is effective at lighting your path without need for adjustment. This is similar to what you get from flashlights like the Ultrafire or Streamlight.
In our walking path test, I held this flashlight at waist height (6′ 2″ tall person) and aimed it at my garage floor at a 45 degree angle. Then I measured the area of coverage to show how effective this flashlight is at lighting a walking path. The Outlite lit up an area 4′ wide and 6′ long. There is a noticeable bright spot in the middle of the light and the flood beam spreads out from there. This does somewhat limit the effectiveness of this flashlight in close quarters as most of the light is focus in a smaller area.
The distance test fared OK given the beam design of this flashlight. The strong central beam creates a tight light pattern in the distance which you can see in the photo below. The flood beam is also useful because it still lights up a big area in the distance. This is in contrast to the sliding focus where you have to pick either narrow or wide beam. You get the best of both worlds here. The downfall in comparison to the sliding focus however is you lose some effective distance. The photo below shows a set of trees at 40 yards which shows a lot of peripheral items but loses brightness on the trees. The max effective distance was about 50 yards.
The Final Verdict
While I was using this flashlight I kept finding myself comparing it to the wf-502b. After all, they are very similar in design and use. The Outlite 501b is ideal for more tactical uses where adjusting the flashlight isn’t particularly necessary and going from close up to distance usage is common. I am rating this flashlight between a 7 and 8 out of 10.