Best Tactical Flashlight Reviews 2017

(Updated )
There are numerous types and classes of tactical flashlight. Since it’s a very important item, you’ll need to get one with reliable features. To this end, we present to you five top brands carefully selected (after extensive research) from a pool of brands with some of the best tactical flashlights in the market. We’ve featured one product per brand to showcase what they’re up to. However, it’s noteworthy that these featured brands all have other tactical flashlight options other than those reviewed here.
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Overview
PROS
CONS
SPECS
Size
Bulb
Brightness
Battery
Extras
Our Top Choice
SureFire G2X Pro Dual Tactical Flashlight
SureFire Ltd was founded by an engineer in 1969 with the aim of harnessing laser power for industrial uses.
Its weatherproof design and tough polycarbonate window ensure durability and reliability. It is made with tough polymer for a comfortable and secure grip.
One small issue is the company's slow customer service response.
1.5 x 5.2 x 1.5 inches; 0.28 lbs
White; LED
320 lumens
2 123A batteries included
Weatherproof; pocket clip
Best Value
J5 Tactical V1-PRO Tactical Flashlight
J5 Tactical is an online company that deals in high-powered tactical flashlights and tools. Its products are well known for their quality, efficient output and durability.
Its adjustable focus light lamp provides flexible beam ranges, and it’s heavy-duty and tough, ideal for outdoor use.
No problems have been reported so far.
1.02 x 3.7 x 1.02 in; 0.31 lbs
White; LED
300 lumens
1 AA or 14500 rechargeable
Waterproof
Streamlight Pro-Tac Tactical Flashlight
Streamlight has ideas and innovations that are based on real-world, hands-on experience in delivering high-quality, durable lighting products.
It has an anti-roll head that prevents it from rolling when you set it down. It gives out an extremely powerful beam of 750 lumens, and has a dual fuel mode.
One little downer is that it’s a little bit heavy.
5.2 x 1.4 x 1.4 inches; 0.35 lbs
White; LED
600 lumens
2 123A batteries included
Anti-roll face cap
Supernova Guardian 1300 Tactical Flashlight
Intervine, owner of the Supernova brand, is known for manufacturing highly functional products supported by top-notch customer service.
Its textured anti-slip handle ensures comfort and stability, while the high-efficiency booster circuit extends battery life and output.
No problems have been reported.
1.5 lbs.
White; CREE XM-L U2 LED
800 lumens
3 AAA or 18650 rechargeable
Removable belt clip
Pelican 2360 LED Tactical Light
Pelican is a global leader in the design and manufacture of both high-performance protective case solutions and advanced portable lighting systems.
Its battery level indicator keeps you informed about the power available, and the tailcap switch lets you select high, low or strobe output mode.
One little flaw is that it's heavier than necessary, but that’s because of its ruggedness.
9 x 4.25 x 2 in; 0.29 lbs
White; LED
94 lumens
2 AA batteries -- not included
Removable 2-way pocket clip

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How Do I Choose the Best Tactical Flashlight?

A tactical flashlight is usually more durable and feature-laden than a normal household flashlight. For a flashlight to be called a tactical flashlight, it must be made from really sturdy materials that can withstand the elements and rough handling, as sometimes it can be used as a weapon. It should also be able to deliver at least 90 lumens of light intensity, and should have several lighting modes. Such a flashlight should also be easy to hold.

A tactical flashlight is designed differently because of its different purpose. Most tactical flashlights are mounted on guns for target illumination. Quite a good number of them are handheld and can be used as a means of non-lethal force to temporarily blind or disorient an adversary. Pay attention to the features of the tactical flashlight you want to buy.

Your ideal tactical flashlight should deliver a bright beam of light consistently, while not running down its batteries quickly. Bearing in mind the exact reason you want to get a tactical flashlight will help you determine if you should get one with a halogen bulb, xenon bulb, or light emitting diodes.

Let’s look a little more deeply at some factors you need to consider when buying a tactical flashlight, such as the illuminating source, the type of battery powering it, the intensity of the illumination and, quite naturally, the cost.
Price
Making purchases has a lot to do with the budget you have earmarked for them. Most times, before going to the market, you decide the maximum amount you're willing to spend. Nonetheless, very functional products with rich features mean more value, and hence more money required to buy them. During the research for this review, we came across cheap tactical flashlights, but we did not bother with them as we are always interested in great value for every dollar spent.

The price of tactical flashlights ranges between $29 and $80, which we consider a moderate price range. Thus, all the tactical flashlights you see here are among the very best you will find, and at affordable prices. Note, however, that the greatest contributor to the price of a flashlight is the amount of power it can deliver per time, which is measured by its brightness and the material it is made from. Polymer flashlights are quite expensive.
Features
Flashlights have undergone a renaissance period of sorts since the advent of LED (light emitting diodes). They are now smaller, brighter, controlled with microprocessors, and use a lot less energy. These new models are compact enough to be carried easily every day. The most important feature to look for is the light intensity, which is measured in lumens. The higher it is, the brighter your flashlight and of course, the more expensive. Other important features to consider when looking for a great tactical flashlight include:
  • Brightness settings
  • Battery type
  • Accessories
  • Material
  • Weight
Construction and Design
Every tactical flashlight has a power button used for controlling different brightness or light settings. There is the low setting, which saves battery life and which also provides the least brightness. The high setting, conversely, provides the brightest illumination. There are also certain models with a medium setting, which sits between the low and high settings. Some tactical flashlights have a strobe setting that conceals the movements of the user and thus disorients attackers. Since tactical flashlights are primarily built to produce high-intensity illumination, this should be your major concern or consideration: the higher the intensity, the better. Note that keeping the tactical flashlight shining brightly for a great length of time means shorter battery life.

Another feature you must pay attention to in deciding which flashlight to get is the material. There are various materials tactical flashlights are made from, including plastic, aluminium, anodized aluminium and polymers. Usually, the most affordable type of tactical flashlight is housed in plastic. This doesn’t necessarily mean cheap or flimsy construction. These plastics are hardened to be durable and lightweight at the same time, but not as durable as ones housed in an aluminium casing. Normally, the only reason you would want a tactical flashlight made from plastic is cost, but you should note that such plastic tactical flashlights are very rare these days.

Flashlights made from aluminium are usually lightweight. Aluminum is definitely sturdier than plastic, but is still a soft metal when compared with stainless steel. It can degrade and rupture when the right amount of force is applied, and this is why anodized aluminium is fast replacing aluminium as the preferred material for making tactical flashlights. Anodized aluminium is hardened by growing a layer of aluminium oxide (one of the strongest materials in the world, second only to diamond) on the aluminium surface. So, unless what you want is a diamond flashlight (and we don’t know a brand that makes those), anodized aluminium is your best choice.

Finally, there are polymer-based tactical flashlights. Because of the huge expenses incurred in researching and creating them, they're expensive. These proprietary flashlights have become necessary, especially for those in very cold climates where it can be dangerous to hold a metal object in extreme cold. Polymer flashlights are now being considered the future of the tactical flashlight industry.

The point of all these facts is to help you make a more informed purchase of your next tactical flashlight. We will now look at features like battery and weight, and why you should consider them before buying a tactical flashlight.
Performance and Ease of Use
The performance of your tactical flashlight has a lot to do with the type of battery powering it. The right battery will not only deliver better illumination, but help with cutting the cost of operating your tactical flashlight. There are various types of batteries, and some are rechargeable.

There are the inexpensive and common AA/AAA batteries, which are generally used for many flashlights. The C/D types are larger and heavy, while the 123A lithium batteries (which have twice the voltage of alkaline batteries and about half their size) are preferred for tactical flashlights. There are also rechargeable batteries, mostly used by law enforcement agents and professionals. These, over time, can save you thousands of dollars in purchasing disposable batteries. There are also flashlights with capacitors, which are relatively new. They are lightweight and can be charged rapidly. However, they do not hold as much power as traditional batteries, and they discharge within a few weeks.

Pay attention to the weight of a tactical flashlight. By weight we are referring to size, not power. The fact that a flashlight is heavier and bulkier does not mean it delivers more illumination than its smaller counterpart. It means that its batteries, which are of course larger, last longer and cost more than ones used by smaller flashlights. Depending on what you need the flashlight for, a heavy flashlight can be ideal for home use or camping. Law enforcement agencies favor these heavy flashlights, as they can be used as weapons of self-defense if they lose their primary weapon. But if your activities require you to move around a lot or walk long distances, a smaller, lighter flashlight is what you need. You can put it in your backpack without any significant weight gain. Athletes prefer these small ones, as they can easily fit in a running pack. Because these flashlights produce high-intensity lights, they can be used to temporarily disorient an attacker.

What is the Best Tactical Flashlight?

Before investing in a tactical flashlight, there are some important factors to consider, such as the maximum brightness output, the different brightness settings and the type of battery that powers it. You might also want to check the casing for shock and water resistance capacities. After reading our buying guide, it’s safe to say that you now know the different factors that should inform your choice. We urge you to look at these individual product reviews carefully and pick a tactical flashlight that suits you!
Our Top Choice
The SureFire G2X Pro Dual-Output Tactical Flashlight is moderately priced and compactly designed, with a tough Nitrolon body and dual light output options. Are you in the market for a flashlight with features such as 500 Lumens of high output for 1.5 hours, and a LED emitter regulated to maximize light output? We recommend the SureFire P2X Fury Tactical LED Flashlight.
SureFire G2X Pro Series LED Dual-Output Tactical Flashlight – Available in 6 Colors & 4 Styles

SureFire Tactical Flashlight G2X-C-BK – Black – Tactical


Features
SureFire Ltd was founded by Dr. John Matthews in 1969 under the name Newport Corporation, with the aim of harnessing laser power for industrial uses. In 1979, its first laser sight for firearms was designed and patented, and the company name changed to Laser Products. A handgun sight for a Colt Trooper and a laser sight for a Rugger Mini-14 were among its first products. Its willingness to accommodate the needs of law enforcement agencies paved the way for the development of a novel idea, a weapon-mounted flashlight, as the technically superb laser-sighted firearms were expensive and commercially non-viable.

Thus entered the SureFire WeaponLight, the first weapon-mounted light. Its various illumination tools for tactical operations are known for their rugged, powerful and compact design. They range from weapon-mounted lights and laser sights, shield and baton lights to hand-held lights powerfully bright enough to temporarily blind, unbalance and disorient an adversary. It later adopted SureFire as its brand name because it’s associated with excellence when it comes to hand-held illumination tools.

The SureFire G2X Pro Dual-Output Tactical Flashlight ($70.00 – Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price) is compactly designed with tough Nitrolon polymer for a comfortable, secure grip. It provides two light output levels: a brilliant, penetrating, perfectly pre-focused 320-lumen beam, and a 15-lumen low-output setting that lets you greatly extend the runtime per set of batteries. That's an option you’ll value more when you find yourself miles from civilization. Other great features of this flashlight include:
  • A high-efficiency LED emitter that is virtually indestructible, regulated to maximize light output and runtime
  • Polycarbonate micro-textured precision reflector that gives out uniform, optimized beam
  • Tough polycarbonate window that protects it from impact
  • Weatherproof with sealed O-ring and gasket
  • Dual-output tailcap click switch – press for momentary-on low, click for constant-on low, switch off and on again for high
  • Comes with high-energy 123A batteries with 10-year shelf life
  • A run-time of 2.5 hours at high output and 45 hours at low output
  • Nitrolon polymer body protects against scratch, abrasion and corrosion
Best Value
The J5 Tactical V1-PRO Tactical Flashlight with adjustable focus light lamp produces a super-bright 300 lumen beam output from a single AA-size alkaline, NiMH or lithium 14500 battery. If you need a heavy-duty, high-end tactical flashlight with a higher lumen beam output, we recommend the J5 Hyper V Tactical Flashlight. It comes with a LED bulb producing an extremely bright 400-lumen beam of light.
J5 Tactical V1-PRO 300 Lumen Ultra Bright Flashlight – Available in 5 Colors

J5 Tactical Tactical Flashlight J5 V1 Pro Blue Aqua


Features
J5 Tactical sells high-powered tactical flashlights and tools. Its products are manufactured in the United States, with dealers all over the country for fast sales and faster after-sales services. Its products are well known for their quality, efficient output and durability. These and more make it a leading brand in the industry.

The J5 Tactical V1-PRO Tactical Flashlight ($29.99 - Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price) is a super-mini, super-bright flashlight encased in a skid-proof aircraft-grade aluminium alloy body. This mini flashlight produces a 300-lumen output from a single AA size alkaline, NiMH or lithium 14500 battery. Its other notable features include:
  • Adjustable focus light lamp: the head of the flashlight can be pulled out to focus the beam to a different range for different usage
  • An extremely bright beam of up to 300 lumens that can cause temporary blindness when shined directly into the eyes
  • Clip for convenient carrying
  • Convex lens reflector that gives a wide-range beam coverage
  • Single mode ON/OFF tailcap switch
  • Heavy-duty, compact and tough as nails, making it perfect for hunting and camping
The Streamlight Pro-Tac Tactical Flashlight comes with TEN-TAP Programming that allows you to choose from three user programs - high/strobe/low, high only and low only. Would you prefer a weapon mount tactical flashlight from Streamlight? Try the Streamlight TLR-1 HL Weapon Mount Tactical Flashlight.
Streamlight Pro-Tac Professional LED Tactical Flashlight with High/Low/Strobe – Available in 3 Colors & 11 Styles

Streamlight Tactical Flashlight 88044 – Pink - ProTac HL, 750 Lumens


Features
Founded in 1973, Streamlight is a company with its ideas and innovations based on real-world, hands-on experience. Communicating with customers is one of its trademarks, and the effect can be seen in its continuous efforts at improving existing products and creating new and better ones. With its customer-oriented, durable lighting products, one can hardly complain. In case there’s any issue, its customer service is always ready to help you.

The Streamlight Pro-Tac Tactical Flashlight ($75.11 – Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price) is an efficient, dual-fuel tactical flashlight built with durable anodized machined aircraft aluminum construction and O-ring sealed glass lens. Here are some of its other features:
  • TEN-TAP Programming that lets you choose from three user programs - high/strobe/low, high only and low only
  • C4 LED illumination with beam ranging from an extremely powerful 750 lumens at its highest output to 35 lumens at its lowest output
  • Output-dependent runtime that gives it 1.25 hours’ runtime maximum illumination and up to 20 hours’ runtime for low illumination
  • Strobe light option for signaling and disorienting
  • Solid State power regulation providing maximum light output throughout battery life
  • Dual fuel mode means it can use either two CR123A lithium batteries (included) or one Streamlight rechargeable 18650 lithium ion battery
The Supernova Guardian 1300 Tactical Flashlight is a professional tactical LED flashlight that combines the latest in LED lighting technology with unrivaled performance and capabilities. Would you prefer a less expensive flashlight that comes with a power bank? Then we’d suggest the Sentinel 1300XL Tactical LED Flashlight.
Supernova Guardian 1300 Professional Series Ultra Bright Rechargeable Tactical LED Flashlight with Remote Pressure Switch and BrightStart Technology

Supernova Tactical Flashlight Guardian 1300xl


Features
Intervine is an Irish-American family-owned business established in 1997. Its focus has been to always offer amazing products and amazing customer service. It achieves this through active interaction with customers on a daily basis, in a bid to be the best products and services company in the industry. Its flagship brand of ultra-bright and ultra-long-lasting LED lighting products (known as the Supernova) is top-notch, with cutting-edge technology that brings very bright and highly efficient lighting solutions to its customers.

The Supernova Guardian 1300 Tactical Flashlight ($69.99 – Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price) combines the latest LED lighting technology with top performance and capabilities. Whether you’re a professional or an enthusiast, this flashlight will give you the power and confidence you need for whatever function you need to perform.

Other features that will interest you include:
  • The latest CREE XM-L U2 LED bulb and Ultra Clear Tempered Glass Lens provides the brightest LED lighting in its class
  • Five Operating Modes with BrightStart Memory TM technology: Full - Medium - Low - Strobe – SOS
  • Remarkably beautiful and smooth, brushed aircraft grade aluminum alloy finish that is scratchproof and shockproof
  • High-efficiency booster circuit for longer battery life
  • Powered by high-capacity rechargeable lithium battery for maximum power (two included) or three AAA-size alkaline batteries (also included) to ensure you are never left in the dark
  • Textured anti-slip handle for comfort and stability
The Pelican 2360 LED Tactical Light is a very affordable flashlight with four selectable programs and a Pelican's lifetime guarantee. For a high-end flashlight with more advanced features, check out the Pelican 7060 Rechargeable LED Light with its new dual switch technology.
Pelican Black LED Tactical Flashlight – 95 Lumens & 2 Hour Runtime

Pelican Tactical Flashlight 2360-000-110


Features
Founded in 1976, Pelican is a global leader in making high-performance protective case solutions and advanced portable lighting systems. Its products are in high demand by professionals in the most demanding fields, including fire safety, law enforcement, life sciences, defence/military, industrial, etc.

The Pelican 2360 LED Tactical Light ($29.89 – Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price) combines the convenience of AA alkaline batteries with the high performance of lithium batteries to give a powerful light beam of 375 lumens. It gets this much power with just two standard AA alkaline batteries. Notable features of this flashlight include:
  • Aerospace grade aluminium body and an impact-resistant, fail-safe LED lamp module that helps prevent equipment failure
  • Tailcap push switch for high, low or strobe output selection
  • Four selectable programs
  • Pelican's Lifetime Guarantee
  • Battery level indicator that lets you know the battery life remaining so you won’t be taken unawares
  • Two AA alkaline batteries included in the pack

Get the Best Tactical Flashlight of 2017!

Thank you for reading to the end. We hope you’re fully equipped to confidently place your order now. In the unlikely event that none of the featured products meet your requirements, click through any of the brand links on this page to see their other offerings.

Our Top Choice
SureFire G2X Pro Dual Tactical Flashlight
Best Value
J5 Tactical V1-PRO Tactical Flashlight
Streamlight Pro-Tac Tactical Flashlight
Supernova Guardian 1300 Tactical Flashlight
Pelican 2360 LED Tactical Light