Imago Metrics Engineering Human & Technology Performance
Home Solutions About Us Services Methods Markets Contact


5 Watt Luxeon Star LED

Quick Facts:

Dimensions & Weight
Case Material
Case Features
Case Access Type
Switch Type
Reflector Type
Lens Type
Bulb Type
Beam Type
Beam Characteristics
Overall Output
Nominal Color
Battery / Power Type
Battery Life (advertised)
Environmental Protection
Special Items of Note
Retail Availability & Cost

Diameter - Head1.1" / Body .9", L 5.0", Weight 3.7 oz.with batteries
CNC Machined aerospace-grade aluminum, HA Type III anodized throughout
Machined textured grip, pocket clip with lanyard hole
Unscrew tail-section for battery change
Tailcap- Click On/Off, Momentary Off available
Shiny stochastic textured reflector
High Dome (Lambertian) 5 Watt White Luxeon Star LED
Wide W/ Slight hotspot
Bright center and corona & very smooth transition to beam edges. No voids or anomalies
75.0 Lumens (advertised)
5700K - Blue bias
3V Cell Type. 2 x CR123A- included
1 hour regulated, diminishing thereafter
'O'-ring seals
Retail Boxed. Handsome presentation packaging
2 Year Limited (Excludes batteries)
$149.00 as evaluated

Form Factor & Build

1- Modern industrial interpretation of the classic hand-held flashlight form. Geometry is a radially symmetrical (less spring clip) round cross-section / featuring some geometric elements including: a basic cylinder that is modified by a crenellated or 'notched' bezel, scalloped head, scoop transitional collar and an agressively textured body section. These aspects give the OMBU X-55 an understated industrial elegance. Most of these details help to alleviate the monotony of mono-form design so typical of flashlights. The OMBU X-55 pays more than cursory homage to the original flashlight on which its design seems to be closely based.
2- The notches at the front of the bezel are useful in non-lethal compliance as well as to indicate that the light is still on even if it's head down on a table. oval 'scoops' around the head -behind the bezel add a touch of flair without serving to allow for head removal. The head is cemented in place against the body section. These scoops do not stop the light from rolling on a smooth flat surface, but the attached spring pocket clip does. The strategically located aggressive knurling ensures a secure grip even with wet or oily hands. The strong spring clip speaks of secure and rapid deployment and stowage.
3- The head of light is wider than the body & tail-piece which are approximately the same diameter.
4- The flashlight feels significantly lighter than many flashlights of comparable output. Solid construction and 'just enough' heft contribute to giving the OMBU X-55 excellent balance in the hand. Ideal for individuals with small to medium sized hands, it's quite holdable by users with large or extra-large hands as well.
5- One's hand surrounds the aggressively textured body section.The body of the light easily fills a medium (*1) sized palm with no protrusion.
6- A scooped collar behind the head assists in indexing the front of the grip.
7- The aluminum wall thickness of the battery tube is 2.0 mm.
8- The two sections fit together fairly well with only a slightly rough threading action.
9- Black Hard Anodizing Type III (Matte) on the outside and on the inside of the tailcap and body section provide protection against corrosion.
10- The black finish minimizes reflections/glare by day by night
11- There is only some battery rattle. Substantial 'O' ring seals provide shock absorption, a snug fit and a seal against the elements- especially water.
12- Very rugged look & feel with substantial toughness. It's suitable Military/SWAT/Law enforcement caliber flashlight that would more than satisfy the needs of a consumer demanding an overbuilt product even for everyday use.

Ergonomics & Mount Options

1- Ambidextrous. Center of balance slightly in front of the midpoint on the body section.
2- A medium palm completely surrounds the body of the OMBU X-55, with the thumb and first or second fingers- naturally positioned on the front of the body section just behind the head-portion and indexed to the scooped collar. Ideal for individuals with small to medium sized hands- it's quite holdable by users with large or extra-large hands as well. It is specifically designed to be held using various 'tactical' grips including: Harries Flashlight Technique , -Rogers grip, forward, upward and downward pointing 'standard' flashlight hand-held modes.
3- A medium duty Click On/Off tail-piece switch and rubber button allow for either constant or intermittent light de-activation-especially with one hand.
4- No native mounting options for firearms use are evident, though the mid-section is gripable by clamping brackets or other improvised and custom designed attachment solutions.


1- Stowage- An extra heavy duty spring steel clip allows for head-up stowage in pockets of all fabric thicknesses up to about 1/4". A 1.5" long clip has a 1mmX 3mm cut-out in it to allow the attachment of rings, and lanyards.
2 - Activation-In normal use- light emits from the front of the flashlight when activation occurs through an inward pushing of the rubber covered tail cap click switch . A partial (soft) de-activation causes the light to turn Off momentarily . Turning the light permanently 'Off' requires a repetition of the button clicking procedure. This dual functionality is known as a 'toggle'. Intuitive use involves the thumb or first or second fingers of the flashlight's supporting hand- pressing the switch while the light is held in one of various possible grasps- or is supported by a tripod, clamp or other support. One hand may therefore be used to activate the light in 'full-momentary-On' -in the Harries or /Rogers holds for example. The tailpiece may not be turned anticlockwise into a 'lock-out' position to prevent unintentional activation.
3-The head is threaded to the body section but is cemented in place- preventing user replacement or crossgrade of the head assembly.
The removable tailpiece protects the battery compartment from the environment by a single 'O' ring and allows for click switch maintenance. Battery replacement entails the removal of the tail section from the body section-batteries are then fed into the battery compartment -as is common in most tactical type lights.

Human Factors & Usability

1-Matte anodizing protects a surface that is finely machined throughout .
2-The OMBU X-55 design promotes intuitive grip focus on the region between the tailcap and the scooped transition ring.
3- We did not perform a 'pull' test but we judged the combination of aggressive body texture pattern, combined with matte anodizing to be effective mitigators against hand slippage- especially under wet or oily conditions .
4- The lightness, brightness and sturdiness of this light make it suitable for critical inspection, law enforcement, military and security. It is additionally suited for rough outdoors,and other rough environmental use .It's viability in water-sports or underwater is probably very good (untested)-due to the impressive, medium duty 'O' rings and precision threading both at the head and tail sections. it really deserves to be used anywhere where a combination of lightness, brightness and ruggedness are all equally important.
5-The toggling push for click On/Off activation procedure is an intuitive and fast implementation of the switch.
6- Due to a protrusion of the rubber switch button- the light may not be stood on its tail for ceiling bounce mode. Candle mode is also not an option due to the inability of the user to separate the emitter from the rest of the head section and exposing it. NOTE- The shroud surrounding the switch button is no more than 1.5 mm short of being adequate for enabling this light to stand upright on it's tail. In mimicking the original light too closely, the designers of the OMBU X-55 fell short of improving on it's shortcomings - by 1.5 mm!
7-The integrated emitter assembly is not user accessible or modifiable.

Beam Quality & Characteristics 1- The stippled or 'stochastic' reflector of the OMBU X-55 creates a bright circular beam that is a wide flood of light with a wide circular hotspot in its center and no voids or anomalies whatsoever.
2- The wide and round-shaped beam is excellent for general searching and is bright and wide enough to create a floodlit effect in a room or to shed a wide swath of light on an exterior scene.
3-The OMBU X-55 creates a subject illumination in a category that we've codified as an extremely Context Inclusive Illumination Window (CIIW) as compared with a Context Exclusive Illumination Window (CEIW) (*5)
4- For one test, we used the OMBU X-55 proped on a tripod as we changed a tire in the dark. It brightly illuminated the entire side of a medium size sedan, casting an even beam over the entire side of the car . Handheld it performed marvelously in close proximity foraging -never creating 'blindness' from an overly bright hotspot. The OMBU X-55 was also excellent for penetrating tinted and dirty glass and screened security grates.
5- Due to it's blue biased LED bin lot, the OMBU X-55 exhibited significant light scatter when used for foraging on a hot humid night. Though uniformy the same color throught its beam the bias created significant glare.The addition of CC 10Y or 1/4 CTO filtration would help to correct this bias.
6- Due to its very smooth beam, the OMBU X-55 did not exhibit object 'burn-out' at medium ranges.
7-To test the throw of the OMBU X-55, we conducted a Maximum Distance for Object Identification or MDOI (*2) trial and managed to confidently differentiate our test subject (a Black 33 Gallon (124Litre) Trash Bag) from its immediate surroundings, from as far away as 130 feet with the subject area in near total darkness and the evaluators and flashlight in a moderate level of street sodium vapor ambient lighting (RH=70% at 70f). This test simulated a person searching for an object of known size -a person for example- but located in an unknown or difficult to spot container -a black trash bag, for example. From 130 feet away, the OMBU X-55 positively lit up the vegetation surrounding our subject enough to clearly distinguish it from the Black 33 Gallon Trash Bag, that lay on the ground.The estimated contrast ratio was 2:1
Beam-shots Page >>
Light Quality The color chart tests photographed with a digital camera set for Daylight White Balance and exposure set- to properly expose the gray areas of the chart to 50% or Zone V- 'Mid-tone Gray', revealed that the OMBU X-55's color is consistently around 5,700K from center to corona. Comparing the OMBU X-55 chart photograph with a flash (White Balance set to 'Flash') exposure of the same chart reveals a distinct shift to blue. This makes it slightly less than ideal for situations demanding the highest fidelity of color differentiation. While ideal for most uses, a beam color so blue might make it subject to some glare if used in conditions of high water vapor / humidity or smoke.
Beam-shots Page >>

The OMBU X-55 scored Maximum Distance for Object Identification or MDOI at 130 feet -and did so while displaying one of the brightest/ widest coronas we've seen to date from any flashlight of its class. The OMBU X-55's brightness is more than adequate for general law enforcement, security,and general searching- as well rugged outdoors use.
Beam-shots Page >>


1- The OMBU X-55 is a medium/heavy duty rough use flashlight that's ideal for general flashlight tasks in a number of everyday and several demanding applications. Due to its robust construction and waterproofness- combined with bright beam, we judge it to be an excellent choice for any flashlight tasks that demand reliability and a relatively long-life bulb.
2- Though longer lived than Xenon bulbs of comparable brightness- the 5 Watt Luxeon LED that the OMBU X-55 uses has a substantially shorter life (800-900 Hrs) than a the same flashlight with a 3 Watt Luxeon LED (10,000 Hrs) - making it around 30% brighter than a 3W flashlight but in exchange for 1/10 of the lifespan. While one solution would be to offer a version with a 3W Luxeon head, a better option would be to include a dual or variable power setting to help preserve LED lifespan as well as battery power in situations that do not require the full force of the 5 Watt LED's output.
3-Value. With new flashlights in the Luxeon market space -being released weekly- it's hard to define a relative value when comparing non-comparables. The OMBU X-55 is a good value in a class with one best in class and few other competitors. At this point in time, the OMBU X-55 rates 4.0 stars out of a possible 5 stars.
Our gripes were... A) Shorter lived LED - no low power option B) Cannot stand up in Ceiling-bounce mode C) Non user accessible head section

4.0 Stars- Recommended

Pros= Very bright and smooth wide-angle beam | Excellent build quality|Exceptionally user-centric ergonomics| Task focused ergonomics|Regulated Curcuit | Rugged yet understated styling| Exceptionally effective grip texture | Modern interpretation of a classic tool| Excellent presentation packaging | Good English/Spanish documentation & instructions |
Cons= Shorter LED lifespan| Cannot be used in ceiling bounce mode | Not a premium LED bin color | No momentary On mode | Not cross-gradeable



(*1) Medium Men's glove size- Also, a Standardized Flashlight Hand Size Metric (SFHSM)

  Small A-B = 4.5" or Shorter
  Medium A-B = 4.5"-5"
  Large A-B = 5"-6"
  X-Large A-B = 6" and Longer

(*2) Maximum Distance for Object Identification (MDOI). The maximum distance that a person without the aid of magnification-can with normal or corrected vision, under a given ambient level of light, identify an object of known size, and clearly distinguish it from its surroundings. We have tentatively identified the following scenarios for such measures:

  • A single average sized person/body identification scenario
    • Urban (city, inside buildings, dark alley, lit streets)
    • Rural (countryside,farm residential backyard)
    • Environmental (dessert, woods, wetlands, over water)
    • Natural & manmade disaster (fire, flood/mudslide,earthquake, hurricane /tornado,bombing scene, collapsed structure etc)
  • Small Inanimate Object (smaller than a shoe-box)
  • Medium Inanimate Object (Black Plastic 33 Gallon (124Litre) Garbage Bag stuffed with a big sleeping bag)

(*5) Context Inclusive Illumination Window (CIIW) as compared with a Context Exclusive Illumination Window (CEIW) .

  • CIIW describes a subject illumination paradigm wherein the illumination target is the focus of the beam's brightest disc or 'Hotspot' and peripheral objects to the target are more dimly illuminated in a larger disc that surrounds the focus or hotspot. This outer region is also referred to as a corona or penumbra.
  • CEIW describes a subject illumination paradigm wherein the illumination target is the focus of the beam's brightest disc or 'Hotspot' and peripheral objects to the target are not sufficiently illuminated to be easily discernable at the periphery of subject beam's focus or hotspot.

© 2004 - Imägo Metrics - All Rights Reserved
Original standards designations (including acronyms) depicted in this, as well as all of our evaluations are the exclusive intellectual property of Imägo Metrics LLC and subsidiaries. Reproduction without prior written permission is strictly prohibited.

All Photographs © 2004 - Imago Media





Site Map
Addresses French Japanese Deutch
Legal © Copyright 2003 Imägo Metrics LLC - All Rights Reserved