The Best Tactical Flashlights of 2018   Recently updated !


EagleTac T25C2

EagleTac T25C2

Here we selected and reviewed the best tactical flashlights of 2018. The flashlights in this review are, due to their robustness and functionality, ideal for soldiers, law enforcement officers, hunters and other tactical enthusiasts. A tactical flashlight does not only provide good illumination but can also be used for self-defense and in emergency situations. Therefore, tactical flashlights usually feature a durable and sharp toothed bezel (also referred to as the strike bezel) which can work as a weapon or can be used for breaking windows in emergency situations such as car crashes, fires etc. The downside of such a bezel, is that you cannot take the flashlight on an airplane (in carry-on luggage) as it will most likely get confiscated. If you are not sure whether to get a flashlight or a headlamp also check out our review of the Best Headlamps which includes top-notch headlamps for outdoor sports and tactical use.

In the following we selected and reviewed the best tactical flashlights. We only listed flashlights that provide good brightness and beam distance and are at the same time light and reasonably sized (not too big for everyday carry). All tactical flashlights in this review are also very sturdy, water-resistant and have a long battery life.

1. Buying a Tactical Flashlight – What is important?

Size and Weight:

Since you will be probably carrying the flashlight around, it is a big benefit if it is small and light. In the past tactical flashlights were large and heavy to provide good illumination. However, nowadays cutting-edge technology allows manufacturers to make small and light tactical flashlights that provide the same or even better illumination.

Illumination:

A tactical flashlight should provide good brightness and beam distance. This selection of the best tactical flashlights includes only flashlights that provide brightness of at least 300 lumens which is more than enough for any tactical task. Furthermore, with such a strong flashlight you can also easily disorient an attacker. Be aware that a higher brightness does not necessarily entail a longer beam distance as the beam distance also depends on the optical lens system which concentrates the light into a beam. All tactical flashlights in this review do, however, have a long beam distance due to their high-quality optical lens systems.

Water Resistance:

Because it is very likely that your tactical flashlight will at some point get wet (for example in heavy rain), it is a great benefit if it is water-resistant. In this selection we only included water-resistant tactical flashlights. Two of them are rated IPX8 by the IEC standard 60529 (see the table below) – meaning that they can withstand submersion of up to 1 meter for 30 minutes.

Durability:

A tactical flashlight must provide good durability as it is very likely that it will fall on the ground or get bumped in a backpack. Therefore, tactical flashlights are typically made of very durable materials (metal) which can withstand shocks and regular abrasion.

Batteries:

A tactical flashlight should run for a reasonable amount of time without having the batteries replaced. In this review we only included tactical flashlights with replaceable batteries that have good maximum runtime. However, note that the brightness of the flashlight is reduced as the battery level decreases. Therefore, do not expect that a flashlight with nearly empty batteries will provide optimal brightness.

2. The Best Tactical Flashlights Review

Best Tactical Flashlights

Best Tactical Flashlights

The Best Tactical Flashlights – List

  1. EagleTac T25C2
  2. Olight M2R Warrior
  3. SureFire G2X Tactical
  4. Gerber Cortex
  5. 5.11 TMT L2 Flashlight

Comparison

Feature/Product EagleTac T25C2 Olight M2R Warrior SureFire G2X Tactical Gerber Cortex5.11 TMT L2 Flashlight
Weight4.6 oz. (130 g)5.2 oz. (147 g)4.4 oz. (125 g)4.8 oz. (136 g)5.6 oz. (159 g)
Length5.7 in. (14 cm)5.1 in. (13 cm)5.2 in. (13 cm)6.2 in. (16 cm)8.4 in. (21 cm)
Maximum Brightness1350 lumens1500 lumens320 lumens675 lumens320 lumens
Beam Distance262 m (860 ft.)208 m (682 ft.)n/an/an/a
Battery Life (Highest Power)3 hours 1h 50m 1h 30 min 1h 2h 30m
Batteries 2x CR123A (also supports other types)2x CR123A (also supports other types)2x CR123A3 x CR123A (also supports other types)2 x CR123A
WaterproofIPX-8IPX-8Water-resistantWater-resistantWater-resistant
Illumination LED LED LED LED LED
EagleTac T25C2

EagleTac T25C2

1. EagleTac T25C2

Suitable for:

  • Military use
  • Law enforcement use
  • Hunting
  • Self-defence

The EagleTac T25C2 tactical flashlight is very light and small and thus perfect for everyday carry (EDC). It casts up to 1350 lumens and has a maximum beam distance of 860 feet (262 meters) which is indeed impressive. The tactical flashlight has a rubber on/off switch on the tail and a rotating mode selector; you switch between different modes by rotating the head of the flashlight. The EagleTac flashlight supports several different modes which differ in brightness as well as a few different flashing modes (strobe, SOS etc.). It runs on two CR123A batteries which last for up to 3 hours in the maximum output mode. The EagleTac flashlight also has a metal clip and attachment point for a lanyard. Red, yellow, blue and green color filters are available for this flashlight. The EagleTac T25C2 tactical flashlight is due to its durability (high-quality materials and IPX8 rating) and functionality on of the best tactical flashlights currently on the market.

 

Pros:

  • Size
  • Weight
  • Brightness
  • Beam distance
  • IPX8
  • Dual switch

Cons:

  • /

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Olight M2R Warrior

Olight M2R Warrior

2. Olight M2R Warrior

Suitable for:

  • Military use
  • Law enforcement use
  • Hunting
  • Self-defence

The Olight M2R Warrior is another conveniently sized flashlight that has more than enough features for any tactical task. This tactical flashlight runs on two CR123A batteries and casts up to 1500 lumens. The Olight M2R Warrior is a rechargeable flashlight – it features a magnetic tail cap to which you attach the charger. However, you can also easily use replaceable batteries in case that you don’t have access to electricity. The magnetic tail cap also works as an on/off switch. The flashlight has another switch near the head. This switch allows you to cycle through different modes which differ in brightness and beam distance (strobe is also available).  The Olight M2R Warrior tactical flashlight is made of very durable materials and features a lanyard hole and a pocket clip.

 

Pros:

  • Size
  • Weight
  • Brightness
  • Beam distance
  • IPX8
  • Dual switch

Cons:

  • /

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SureFire G2X Tactical

SureFire G2X Tactical

3. SureFire G2X Tactical

Suitable for:

  • Military use
  • Law enforcement use
  • Hunting
  • Self-defence

The SureFire G2X Tactical flashlight is, due to its reliability and performance, very popular among tactical enthusiasts. It is quite light and casts 320 lumens for 1.5 hours on two CR123A batteries. The SureFire flashlight is made of Nitrolon polymer which is comfortable to hold and provides superb durability. It has a momentary-on rubber switch on the tail and a rotating head switch (constant-on). Unlike, the tactical flashlights listed above, the SureFire G2X Tactical supports only one mode (high brightness). SureFire also offers other accessories for this flashlight. The accessories include slip-on filters (blue and red) and v70 tactical holster for easy carrying.

 

Pros:

  • Size
  • Weight
  • Simplicity
  • Durability
  • Accessories

Cons:

  • Only one mode

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Gerber Cortex

Gerber Cortex

4. Gerber Cortex

Suitable for:

  • Military use
  • Law enforcement use
  • Hunting
  • Self-defence

The Gerber Cortex tactical flashlight is made of durable aluminum and supports three modes; high brightness, low brightness and strobe. This tactical flashlight runs on three CR123A batteries or two AA batteries and casts up to 675 lumens. In low brightness mode the batteries last for 40 hours while in high brightness mode they last for 1 hour. The Gerber tactical flashlight has on/off switch on the tail and a rotating mode selector (you switch between high brightness/low brightness/strobe by rotating the head of the flashlight. The Gerber Cortex tactical flashlight is also equipped with a pocket clip and a toothed bezel.

 

Pros:

  • Weight
  • Brightness

Cons:

  • /

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5.11 TMT L2 Flashlight

5.11 TMT L2 Flashlight

5. 5.11 TMT L2 Flashlight

Suitable for:

  • Military use
  • Law enforcement use
  • Hunting
  • Self-defence

The 5.11 TMT L2 tactical flashlight is very durable as it is made of aerospace grade aluminum. It runs on two CR123A batteries and casts 320 lumens in high brightness mode. Besides from high brightness mode the 5.11 tactical flashlight also supports low brightness mode and strobe. In high brightness mode the batteries last for 2.5 hours while in low brightness mode they last for up to 55 hours. The 5.11 flashlight features momentary-on switch, rotary switch, water-resistant construction, break-away lanyard and a toothed bezel. The 5.11 TMT L2 is a perfect option for tactical enthusiasts who need a simple but very reliable flashlight.

 

Pros:

  • Simplicity
  • Durability

Cons:

  • /

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