You may be pondering what the best tactical flashlight for the money is, after all, there’s a wide variety that is currently available on the market. Worry no more; this guide aims to provide you with the best tactical flashlight reviews to help you make an educated purchase, a purchase that will last you for many years to come!
- 1 Things to consider when buying a tactical flashlight
- 2 The Best Tactical Flashlights of 2018
- 2.1 Number 1 Best Tactical Flashlight:
- 2.2 1TAC TC1200 PRO
- 2.3 Streamlight 88040
- 2.4 Solaray Pro ZX-1XL
- 2.5 EcoGear FX Tactical
- 2.6 Vizeri LED Tactical Flashlight
- 2.7 J5 Tactical V1-Pro
- 2.8 AYL TF89
- 2.9 Streamlight 88031
- 2.10 Captink Q1
- 2.11 SOLARAY PRO ZX-1
- 2.12 UTG 126 Lumen Combat
- 2.13 UltraFire WF502B
- 2.14 Ultrafire 501B
- 2.15 ThorFire PF01
- 2.16 Outlite A100
- 2.17 Streamlight 88033
- 2.18 Surefire P2X
- 2.19 Klarus XT11
- 2.20 Coast HP17TAC
- 2.21 Fenix PD35 TAC
- 3 Conclusion
You may have seen them pop up in trade shows or on the internet. It is not exactly easy to clearly point out the best tactical flashlight; it all depends on the needs and preferences of an individual. However, a good tactical flashlight should integrate military level design, professional grade materials, as well as the blindingly bright benefits to cast light on distance as far as two football fields during dark nights. Therefore, it should go beyond the ordinary features of plastic halogen flashlights and traditional incandescent fog lights.
As you can probably already tell, choosing the best tactical flashlight for the money is not the easiest of tasks! Turning to experts isn’t the best idea either, and do you know why? Because they all have their preferences, rarely do I come across an expert that actually gives good advice. This is either because they’re paid by a company or they’ve just stuck to one brand their entire life. The so-called tactical flashlight reviews you read online are often fake and biased.
Me on the other hand, have used over a dozen different brands for many years. I actually have experience and can tell you what works and what doesn’t. That’s why I try to provide unbiased tactical flashlight reviews, I am not paid by anyone and will not gain anything promoting a certain brand.
Benefits of using tactical flashlights
Even though tactical flashlights were primarily used by the military, law enforcement and rescue teams etc, they are becoming extremely popular with regular Joe’s like you and me. One of the primary reason why a regular Joe would buy a tactical flashlight is safety. If you’re walking home at night, a tactical flashlight will provide you with plenty of power to light up dark alleyways and the like. It can also be used a striking weapon if someone were to attack you. One may argue that the best tactical flashlight is something irreplaceable.
Some other benefits of tactical flashlights:
- These can be mounted on a weapon to get a superior vision of the target.
- The tactical flashlights are made to withstand extreme weather conditions and are extremely sturdy.
- These flashlights are waterproof and submersible.
Things to consider when buying a tactical flashlight
The primary factor to consider is the field in which it will be used i.e. hunting, military, law enforcement, or just regular use. Military and law enforcement tactical flashlights are meant for the police, army and Special Forces. They are directly mounted under the barrel or used with other equipment when mounted on the rail like a laser target pointer or a rifle scope. They quickly identify a target while lighting up the shooting area. Hunting flashlights help in lightening up the hunting territory, as well as blinding prey. The majority of people prefer LED tactical lights for their easy installation and the fact that they do not obstruct your aim in any way.
Other factors to consider include light output that is measured in lumens. This is the intensity of the light produced by the flashlight, especially at the highest brightness when powered by new batteries. Light output ranges from a mere 20 lumens to a terrain-scorching 3500 lumens. The beam distance is a measure of distance covered by the light in meters. This is the distance illuminated by the flashlight before the brightness reduces to the equivalent of a full moon’s light.
The runtime of a tactical flashlight is a measure of the time in hours for the output of light to drop to 10% when using new batteries. Runtime is provided for each light mode. Runtime graphs provide the best exemplification of flashlight performance over time.
Down below you will find a list of what I consider to be the very best tactical flashlights of 2018. These are flashlights that have been exceptionally good during my tests, either by providing a much brighter beam than expected, being a whole lot more durable or just providing way more performance for their price.
I can almost 100% guarantee that you will find the best tactical flashlight for you, if not, shoot me a message and tell me what you got instead. I’ll be happy to add it to my list of tactical flashlight reviews.
The Best Tactical Flashlights of 2018
Number 1 Best Tactical Flashlight:
1TAC TC1200 PRO
This small yet powerful bright flashlight is very tough and very compact. It is used by the US Military, Police & First Responders for a very good reason. It is made from aircraft grade aluminium making it extra strong… heck its even been to space and back in testing with no issues at all.
It has a magnetic base so it can be used hands-free and has a built-in clip for attaching to trousers while on the move.
This flashlight comes with high, low and intelligent strobe modes. The TC12000 has a rechargeable battery but can also be used with normal AA-batteries. I would suggest stocking up on non-rechargeable batteries because if the power grid goes out you won’t have much luck charging them.
The incredible brightness gives an intense 1200 lumen beam that can reach up to 2 miles in distance.
This TC1200 Pro is now available to the public for the first time which is amazing news for outdoorists like me.
This flashlight truly is the best flashlight available. I have tested hundreds of flashlights and none others come close.
Here are some key factors why it is my highest rated survival flashlight:
- Lighting – Brightest and Highest Visibility – 1200 lumens and 2 miles in distance.
- Durable – Made From Aircraft Aluminium – Light and Durable
- Waterproof – Fully Waterproof sealed casing of the lamp and power box.
- Fireproof – Yes it is fire proof for up to 5 minutes
- Real Life Uses – This flashlight is used by the country’s emergency teams and military.
This tactical flashlight with C4 LED technology is designed to give you extreme brightness and has 600 Lumens. With the LED solid state power regulation functionality, it offers you a maximum output of light throughout its battery life. It is waterproof and has three operating modes. The high mode provides maximum light with shorter battery life; low gives a less intense beam while strobe mode enables you to send signals in case you’re lost when hiking. The anti-roll face cap prevents light from rolling away when you place the flashlight down. It is a definite option to consider when you want to buy tactical flashlights for camping in remote areas. Many people around the states consider this to be the top rated tactical flashlight that you can currently buy, I mean surely 5,257 positive reviews can’t be wrong?
It is the best brightest tactical flashlight around, with an incredible 1,200 lumens of light. It has five operation modes and a zoom focus function with its zoom lens. , its five modes of operation, its zoom lens with zoom focus, and its water resistance. It is equipped with a belt clip and covered by a deluxe lanyard that makes it waterproof. The majority of customers consider it to be the best tactical flashlight because airline-grade aluminum is used to make its outer shell. It has a LED chip, which is single-die and made using Cree super-silicon carbide. By virtue of this, it is powerful enough to light an entire room. You can focus and zoom on distant objects for maximum illumination. This allows the torch to be powerful and bright enough to light an entire room.
It can be considered the best tactical flashlight due to its relatively low price and the charger and two rechargeable batteries included in the kit. It has a bright light with five modes that are high, medium, low, strobe, and SOS. This quality makes it a good tactical flashlight for camping, hiking, home, tactical, and utility use. Has a round and encamping beam when the lens is zoomed to the widest setting thus lighting up a very large area. The modes of this cheap tactical flashlight can be quickly cycled through by a half-press on the mode button. The narrow beam can light up to the top of trees even when using the low mode.
It provides a dazzling beam due to the CREE T6 XML LED that is used with the focusing feature thus claiming higher lumens. It works on five modes (high, medium, low, strobe, and SOS). It has a gold plated spring, so you don’t need to worry about corrosion and works under water up to a depth of 3 feet. This is a top value tactical flashlight for shotguns and can also be mounted on bikes. If you prefer using the high mode, it is recommended that you use rechargeable 18650 Lithium-ion batteries that are low-cost and long-lasting.
This is definitely best tactical flashlight for the money, it’s compact and easy to carry around. If you are looking for a budget flashlight, then this one is for you, it’s the best affordable tactical flashlight out there. It uses LED technology and has a Focus Zoom Light Lamp that you can quickly adjust. You can pull out the head easily so that you focus the beam on a particular object. It boasts of a super bright output and a maximum of 250 lumens making it a bargain buy at is price. You only require a single AA battery to light it up. It works on two modes (on and off) and features a convex lens reflector that is made using. This is a good tactical flashlight you can’t afford to miss at a low cost yet offers excellent illumination.
The unique feature that makes this tactical flashlight a great buy is the way in which it is made. Its body is fully made with metal giving it a waterproof design. This tactical flashlight is relatively cheap thus offering you value for your money. It does not disappoint when it comes to performance since it provides 900 lumens. You only need 3 AAA batteries to light it up. Additionally, it can be operated using a single 18650 battery. The light bulb of this flashlight I can last for up to an estimated 100,000 hours. It is easy for you to operate since all you need is to click a button to switch between modes.
The Streamlight 88031 is a small, portable flashlight with a length of 7 inches and a weight of 4.8 ounces. It works on three modes; of which the high-strobe-low is the default one. However, you can program it to the low mode or high mode only as you may wish. There is a push button placed on the tail switch that enables you to change between the modes and functions. This makes it easy for you to use it with one hand. For handy storage, it has a clip. It uses disposable batteries because Streamlight does not manufacture rechargeable batteries for any of their products. This model is well-built to withstand a lot of wear and tear. It offers you a bright light with a great throw. The C4 LED technology used on it has a lifetime of about 50,000 hours. You can get 260 lumens on high mode with a candela peak beam intensity of 5,600. You get 13 lumens on low mode with a candela peak beam intensity of 300.
The Captink Q1 tactical flashlight is ideal outdoor camping and sports due to its resistance to cold and vibration. You can easily switch between the five modes it offers (high, medium, low, strobe, and SOS). It is a military grade tactical flashlight and has a waterproof property that is obtained from its construction material of aviation aluminum alloy. This flashlight has a maximum output of 700 lumens. It contains a safety hammer design that comes in handy whenever you have an emergency, and you need to break the glass. Did I mention it comes in a black tactical carrying case?
Despite weighing only five ounces, it can deliver more than 1,200 lumens of brightness. This is one of the smallest yet powerful flashlights due to the best, bright LED bulbs that can be recharged. Other beneficial features that this tactical flashlight provides you with include a zoom lens and five modes of operation, as well as its rugged construction. The five modes that you can choose from are variable intensity mode, bright tactical intruder strobe, distance mode, floodlight mode, and the SOS emergency signal mode. There is a separate mode for SOS signalling in place of the conventional strobe light mode. Its battery charger doesn’t have cords thus enabling you to plug it directly into the socket reducing clutter on your socket.
It is a tactical flashlight with pressure switch in addition to the high-quality bulb making it the most suitable light for a shotgun. You don’t need to complement the light with reflector and an optimal circuit board since this tactical flashlight does that for you. The flashlight can be mounted on both Picatinny and Weaver rails that have a total length of slightly more than 5.2 inches. You operate this tactical flashlight using a remote pressure switch. It can be activated in three ways through a push button, twist on, and a remote pressure switch. It has a maximum output of 126 lumens making it the best tactical flashlight for use with shotguns to defend homes.
The UltraFire WF 502B tactical flashlight is an impressive, affordable flashlight that provides a maximum output of 1,000 lumens. This flashlight has modern aesthetics and a smooth finishing. The beam is so bright despite being more spread out. It operates on five modes and comes with a rechargeable battery, as well as other accessories such as the charger and the tactical mount. The aluminum casing gives it weatherproof proof properties (not waterproof) and has tail cap and lens O-ring seals. You can switch between the modes with a half click on the tail switch of the flashlight or by full clicks that act as the power button. It will always remember your current mode even after you switch it off due to the memory it contains the five modes of this flashlight include strobe, SOS, 40 lumen, 400 lumen, and 1000 lumen (the brightest). The strobe mode is a bit slower to prevent irritation for those who don’t like the quick frequency of the strobe mode.
This is the best multipurpose tactical flashlight that you can use for military operations, stargazing, and hunting even at night due to the night vision scope it has. During the day it, you can use it reading maps, signalling, and other functions. To its credit, it is a very bright flashlight whose highest setting can easily blind you. The light produced by the LED bulb is white and has five modes of operation (3 brightness levels, strobe, and SOS). To switch between the modes, you only need to half press the on/off button. It has a memory that enables it to revert to the mode that was in use before it as switched of. This enables you to select a preferable mode on your own.
If you prefer small appliances, then this is the best tactical flashlight for you. It is a small, bright flashlight with 1,000 lumens. It has three levels of brightness that are high for maximum brightness, moonlight for medium brightness and low mode. It is penlight made using aircraft grade aluminum that is resistant to corrosion. Due to its shockproof, waterproof, and impact resistant properties, it is suitable for everyday use n any environment. The ThorFire PF01 has a powerful Cree XPE (R3) LED bulb for maximum brightness and has a clip for effortless carrying. It is lightweight and compact, thus can be operated with a single hand at home for everyday use. It easily fits in your pocket just like a pen and can be clipped on the pocket. The clip can also be removed if you don’t need it. This penlight uses a single AAA battery and is bright enough to be used for outdoor activities, hiking, and camping.
This tactical flashlight has a Cree XML-T6 LED bulb with an adjustable focus. It provides you with a zoom in 700-900 lumen and a zoom out 500-700 lumen. It is powered by a single 3.7V 18650 battery or three AAA batteries. You can switch between five mods that are available (high, medium, low, strobe, and SOS) with an on/off button, which you can easily operate. This flashlight can stand on its own on a flat surface to be used as a candle. You need to remove the isolation membrane before you can use it.
This tactical flashlight is powered by two AA batteries and uses C4 LED technology. It has a unique design with its body made using high-grade aluminum, which has been hand anodized to give it a magnificent look. It is very light in weight at 3.4 ounces when the batteries are inserted making it easier to have it in your pocket without even noticing that it is there. Its highest mode produces 155 lumens with a runtime of about 36 hours. It has a unique pattern of multiple beams that give it an appealing look. At the highest mode, you can illuminate up to an area of 11 meters.
This is a pocket-sized tactical flashlight that makes use of a high-efficiency, failure-proof LED lighting system in delivering either the high 500 lumens or the 15 lumens of focused light. It contains a click-type tail cap switch while its body is made up of a high-strength aerospace aluminum that is anodized to meet military specifications. It, therefore, offers you resistance to corrosion, scratches, and abrasion. It produces a smooth, optimized beam through the precision micro-textured reflector while the tempered window prevents thermal and impact shock thus maximizing the transmission of light. The low 15-lumen setting gives you 46 hours of light while the high 500-lumen high setting gives you light for 1.5 hours.
This flashlight has three lighting options with a maximum brightness of 820 lumens. The Klarus XT11 is compact and tactically oriented with a two-button tail cap that is used in activating it and switching between modes. It is the best tactical flashlight for use in the military, hunting, or even self-defense. It can be powered by using two 123A lithium primary cells or a single 18650 lithium-ion battery that is rechargeable. The strobe light produces 600 lumens allowing for up to 4.4 hours of consecutive use. This comes in handy whenever you are lost due to its signalling capability. The light can be regulated digitally to ensure stable and constant brightness.
If you are looking for extreme power and distance in a tactical flashlight, then this one is for you. It integrates a slide focus that has high, low and strobe modes with long range focusing system to produce light with either spot a mode or a super wide flood beam at varying distances and brightness that can be controlled with one hand. An anti-roll tail cap is fitted tot allow you place it on irregular surfaces without rolling. The unique sequence of the strobe light enables you to evade assailants easily.
The Fenix PD35 TAC is a pocket-sized tactical flashlight designed for high performance. It has a compact size of less than 6 inches long yet it is amazingly bright and unique in its performance. It is a rugged flashlight made using durable aircraft-grade aluminum that has a finishing of a premium type III hard-anodized anti-abrasion property. The tactical design features it possesses a one-button operation and a 1000-lumen momentary-on activation. It has simple light modes that include low, turbo, and strobe.
It is hard to think of any time or place where flashlights are not used in the modern world. It doesn’t matter whether you are utilizing a digital flashlight on your smartphone or the conventional one. The best tactical flashlight can be used for blinding temporarily or disorienting prey or enemies in an extreme environment. At times, it can also be used as an SOS signal, which should come in plenty of handy for those of you who enjoy spending your time in the wilderness.
Before you embark on buying a tactical flashlight, it is important to understand all the features of a flashlight and the various brands available. You risk falling into a salesman’s trap without research, that’s why I recommend you to read my tactical flashlight reviews. Various tactical flashlight brands are designed for different functions, and it is up to you to identify the best tactical flashlight for your needs. Consequently, when choosing the best tactical flashlight don’t go for what works for your friends or what you have been told by a salesman, but that which meets your current needs and specifications.