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Do you want to know why?
Whether you need a bright light for early morning hunting trips, something you can use to defend yourself at night, or simply want a sturdy flashlight, tactical flashlights are the way to go. Used by military and police officers, these flashlights are made from weapons-grade aluminium, making them stronger, sturdier and brighter than other flashlights.
What more could you ask for?
Things to Consider
Buying a flashlight isn’t rocket science, but there are still some things you should bear in mind. Brightness, size and longevity are all important things to keep in mind. Let’s get down to it, shall we?
Yoda famously said, “Size matters not.” Unfortunately, none of us is Jedi knights, so size matters a lot. Tactical flashlights tend to be small, and you’ll want to consider how you plan on carrying it. Will it fit in your purse? Your jacket? Your pants pocket? Figure out where you intend to carry it around and shop accordingly.
This should be a no-brainer. Figure out how much light you need from your flashlight. To do at, consider where you’ll be using it, and for what purposes. Generally, the brighter, the better, but that may not always be true.
What type of batteries does the flashlight take? How long will the flashlight run before the batteries die? How often do you expect to use the flashlight? These are all important questions to consider. If you expect to use the flashlight on a regular basis, try to find one that can run for hundreds or thousands of hours.
Some tactical flashlights are outfitted with awesome extras that can really come in handy, such as a built-in pocket knife or other features. While this should not be your primary goal in choosing a flashlight, it can make for an interesting tie-breaker.
I saved the best for last. What features do you expect in a tactical flashlight, and how much are you willing to pay for them? Figuring out your minimum requirements will go a long way towards establishing a reasonable budget.
If you’re looking for a recommendation for a solid tactical flashlight, we recommend the SureFire G2X Series dual-output.
Durable synthetic Nitrolon body with sturdy aluminum bezel.
LED emitter is virtually indestructible.
Small and compact – less than 7 inches long and weighs less than 5 ounces.
Highly efficient LED allows for long-lasting illumination.
Best Tactical Flashlights Under $10
10. J5 Tactical Flashlight – The Original 250
If you’re looking for an affordable tactical flashlight, look no further. This Tactical Flashlight from J5 weighs less than two ounces. You heard that right! This diminutive flashlight was field-tested during a search-and-rescue mission in the middle of the night and was found to last all night on a single AA battery! Featuring sturdy construction and an impressive 250 lumens of LED light, this flashlight is ready for action.
This J5 model features several different light modes: high, low, and strobe-light for use with bicycles. An adjustable focus range lets you control how far the light travels, with an extended range of up to 600 feet. That is the length of two football fields! When you couple this lightweight flashlight with its enormous range and long life, this is simply a steal. Highly recommended.
- Up to 250 lumens
- Three different brightness settings
- Range of up to 600 feet
Best Tactical Flashlights Under $20
9. J5 Tactical V1-Pro 300
The J5 Tactical V1-Pro is even better than the last flashlight. This heavy-duty tactical flashlight has a maximum output of 300 lumens for ultra-bright light that reaches up to 600 feet! Like the J5 250, this simple flashlight weighs just over two ounces and provides hours of illumination with a single AA battery.
While this flashlight may not look like much, it offers awesome performance. Aside from the aesthetic differences, there isn’t much changed between this and the 250, other than the increased light output. That isn’t a bad thing, however. This flashlight is small, lightweight, durable and above all, bright. It is well worth its modest asking price.
- Up to 300 lumens
- Three different brightness settings
- Range up to 600 feet
8. Kootek K1 Tactical Flashlight Knife
If you’re looking for a flashlight that doubles as a self-defense tool, this might be just what you’re looking for. The Kootek Tactical Flashlight Knife combines an impressively bright 800-lumen flashlight with a 3 ½ inch knife attachment that can be folded out in times of need. Whether you need a simple tool for emergencies or a defensive weapon, this built-in knife attachment is a critical feature.
The flashlight itself is no less impressive than its attachment. This flashlight is over a foot long and weighs in just under one pound. It features three brightness levels, three adjustable modes, adjustable beam focus and a strobe light setting. The flashlight is incredibly durable, and it can also be used as a hammer for self-defense or to break a window in an emergency such as a flood, accident or other critical situation.
This is certainly not a compact flashlight. It is, however, a very useful tool for a variety of situations, and its many uses go well beyond mere illumination.
- Up to 800 lumens
- Three different brightness settings
- Features 3 ½ inch knife
Best Tactical Flashlights Under $40
7. Moobibear MD002
The Moobibear MD002 is one mean-looking mother. Built with a strong, aircraft-grade aluminium casing, this flashlight can survive just about anything. It is water-resistant, so it is safe to use in heavy rains or even while swimming to safety in the event of a flood. It is strong enough to be used as a battering tool in emergencies, yet amazingly weighs a mere 4.8 ounces.
The flashlight has five different modes of light, making it extremely useful for a variety of situations. On a low-level 250 lumen setting, the flashlight is rated for a whopping ten hours. At its maximum brightness of 900 lumens, the flashlight can still run for an impressive three hours, no small feat considering it can run on a single rechargeable lithium battery. (The flashlight can also run on three standard alkaline AA batteries if so desired and/or necessary.)
Best of all, the flashlight ships with its own rechargeable lithium battery, as well as an A/C battery recharger. Considering the price range of this flashlight, this is simply an incredible value. This is not a flashlight that disappoints.
- Up to 900 lumens
- Five different brightness settings
- Includes lithium-ion battery and recharger
6. Dax Tactical LED Flashlight Kit
This flashlight from Dax includes not one, but two tactical flashlights. The larger flashlight features an ultra-bright 1200 lumens with five different modes. The secondary flashlight boasts a still-impressive 700 lumens with three user modes. Both flashlights feature an adjustable focus. Constructed of aircraft-grade aluminium, both of these flashlights are strong, durable and built to last.
Dax didn’t stop with the aircraft-grade aluminium. In addition to their natural water-resistance, each flashlight is coated with a hard-anodized finish. They are both anti-abrasive and shock-proof. The larger flashlight has a light range of up to 250 meters (820 feet), and the more compact flashlight has a range of up to 150 meters (490 feet).
Each flashlight is powered by a single lithium battery. Two batteries are included with your purchase, as well as an A/C adapter battery charger. So to sum up, you get two flashlights, two long-lasting Lithium batteries and a charger for said batteries. You really can’t go wrong with a kit like this.
- Includes two different flashlights
- 1200 and 700 lumens
- Ranges of 820 and 490 feet
Best Tactical Flashlights Under $75
5. Solaray Pro ZX-1
The Solaray Pro ZX-1 is yet another crazy-powerful tactical flashlight. Built from aircraft-grade aluminium and offering up to 1200 lumens of blindingly bright light, this water-resistant tactical model is powered by a lithium AA battery and comes with an attached belt clip and lanyard.
Made with single-chip LED technology, this powerhouse flashlight offers five different lighting modes and can last for hours even on its brighter settings. The flashlight comes with a lithium battery and charger included, and the battery is rated for up to 500 recharges. That is a lot of hours of light from a single battery!
Measuring just over six inches long and weighing a mere 5 ounces, this flashlight may not look like much, but it sure packs a whole lot of light in a small package. It also benefits from a sleek, militaristic design that you’re sure to love. All in all, this is a great choice for a flashlight.
- Up to 1200 lumens
- Five different brightness settings
- Includes belt clip and lanyard
4. SureFire G2X
SureFure is one of the most trusted brands of a tactical flashlight, and this SureFire G2X is no exception. The tough Nitrolon polymer body is enhanced with a sturdy aluminium bezel, making this flashlight virtually indestructible. Even the LED emitter is made tougher than nails and can withstand virtually any impact. The flashlight offer two light settings, and ultra-low 15 lumens and a high-intensity 320 lumens.
Small and compact, this SureFire model is less than 7 inches long and weighs less than 5 ounces, but it packs one heck of a punch. A dual-output tail-cap makes it easy to cycle from one setting to the next, and its efficient power usage allows for long-lasting light. It is powered by two SureFire lithium batteries, both of which are included with your purchase.
- Up to 320 lumens
- Two different brightness settings
- Durable Nitrolon polymer body
Best Tactical Flashlights Under $100
3. Fenix PD35
You can’t go wrong with the Fenix PD35 2015. This model of flashlight offers a maximum of up to 1000 lumens of light. Made of aircraft-grade aluminium with a toughened anti-reflective glass lens, this advanced tactical flashlight also has a stainless steel switch to move between tactical and outdoor functions. The outdoor mode has six different brightness settings, and the tactical has three.
This flashlight also boasts an impressive running time. Although it can run for just over an hour at maximum brightness, the flashlight can power on for 8 ½ hours on 200 lumens, over 29 hours on 60 lumens, and a seemingly infinite 140 hours on a minimal 6-lumen setting.
In addition to the flashlight, each purchase includes one specially made Fenix rechargeable battery, two lithium-ion batteries and a custom battery recharger. Weighing in at just over one pound, this flashlight is one you’ll want to keep in your car at all times.
- Up to 1000 lumens
- Four different brightness settings
- Up to 140 hours of light
Best Tactical Flashlights Under $200
2. SureFire P2X Fury
SureFire takes durability to the next level with their P2X Fury. Instead of aircraft-grade aluminium, they built this flashlight with aerospace grade aluminium strong enough to survive the intense heat of reentry into Earth’s orbit. Yeah, that’s a tough flashlight. Like the lesser SureFire G2X, this also features a nigh-indestructible lens and two light settings – a low-output 15 lumens and a brighter, intense 600 lumens. It focuses its light through a micro-textured lens to create a smooth beam of light.
This flashlight is also designed to survive the elements. The gasket seal and o-ring are weatherproofed, and its knurled design ensures maximum comfort while also protecting it against impact. Trusted by law enforcement personnel around the country, SureFire is one of the most dependable and reliable brands of a tactical flashlight.
Small and compact, thus SureFire model is 6 inches long and weighs 7 ounces, but it is one of the most durable flashlights ever made. A dual-output tail-cap makes it easy to cycle from one setting to the next, and its efficient power usage allows for long-lasting light. Plus, this flashlight is backed by SureFire’s lifetime warranty guarantee. If any defect is found in the flashlight, SureFire will replace it without hassle and free of charge.
- Up to 600 lumens
- Made from aerospace-grade aluminium
- Weatherproofed and impact-resistant design
1. Fenix TK35
Fenix portends their TK35 model to be the ultimate edition. This powerhouse tactical flashlight is incredible. Built with aircraft-grade aluminium, waterproof down to six feet for up to half an hour, Digitally regulated for constant brightness, and equipped with an SOS for emergencies, there is practically nothing this flashlight cannot do.
With a brightness of up to 2000 lumens, this is one of the brightest tactical flashlights on the market. With seven light modes (including the SOS), this flashlight can run from just over one hour on its highest setting to an inconceivable 160 hours on its lowest, 20-lumen setting. For those who don’t like to do the math, 160 hours is one eight-hour work day away from an entire week. That’s an incredible performance rating!
A unit favoured by many law enforcement personnel, this flashlight comes with a holster for your belt, two battery chargers with cables to charge in your car as well (ideal for law enforcement), two proprietary Fenix lithium-ion batteries rechargeable and four disposable lithium batteries. You’d be hard-pressed to find a better setup anywhere. Priced at under $200, you are definitely getting a great value.
- Up to 2000 lumens
- Seven different brightness settings
- Up to 140 hours of light
There are a lot of great choices for tactical flashlights out there, and enough options to fit any budget. Whether you simply want a durable, bright flashlight for a late night trek through the woods or you need something a little more heavy-duty, there are plenty of excellent options out there.
The SureFire G2X is an excellent mid-range tactical flashlight and is a brand favoured by a lot of law enforcement personnel. But regardless of what you choose, you can rest easy knowing you’ve made the right choice.
If you have any questions, comments, suggestions or experiences you would like to share; please let us know. Tell us how you have enjoyed your new tactical flashlight. We’ve love to hear from you!