CAMPING & HIKING

Best LED Flashlight: How to Light Up Your Night

Best LED Flashlight featured
Jerry Mueller
Written by Jerry Mueller

You have to agree that everyone needs a flashlight. If the power goes out, or you’re going camping, you’ll need one to help you get from point A to point B safely, right? However, you want to purchase a flashlight that’s trustworthy and won’t fail you. That means you’ll need to know which flashlights stand up to their name.

Luckily, nowadays new technology is aiding us with better and more innovative products. One of them are LED flashlights, which have longer battery lives, bulb lives, and have more incandescent light. All of this sounds great, but you still need to know which one to choose, and which can be branded as the best LED flashlight in the sea of different models that are available on the market. That’s exactly where we want to help you.

In this article we have taken a detailed look at some of the best models. That way, by the end of the read, you will have enough information to buy the one that suits you the best. We’ve analyzed the features and compared models, you just have to know what you want from yours, and with the information provided, you will be ready.

Product Name Weight Dimensions Specific FeaturesPrice
SureFire P2X Fury 7 oz6 x 3 x 1 inLED light emitter, two output levels: 15 Lumens and 600 Lumens, micro-textured reflectorCheck price on Amazon
Supernova Guardian 19.2 oz2 x 1.8 x 1.8 inCREE XM-L U2 LED bulb, large focus area, 5 operating modes, BrightStart Memory TechnologyCheck price on Amazon
Streamlight Protac HL 5.6 oz5.2 x 1.4 x 1.4 in3 operating modes, waterproof body, C4 LED technology, LED solid state power regulationCheck price on Amazon
Nitecore MH25 9.6 oz6.3 x 1.6 x 1.6 in960 Lumens, runtime of up to 28 hours, rechargeable batteryCheck price on Amazon
Sunwayman V11R1.8 oz3.3 x 0.9 x 0.9 inTactical forward switch, waterproof body, digital sensor magnetic control system, lifetime of up to 50,000 hoursCheck price on Amazon
Eagletac G25C2 4.8 oz5.9 x 1 x 1.55 inLumen 1180, maximum runtime: 90 hours, 1 output mode, maximum throw: 284 meters, waterproofCheck price on Amazon
Thrunite TN32 CW 4.8 oz9.1 x 6.4 x 4.6 inStreamline body design, anti-abrasive finish, aircraft grade aluminum and copper circuitCheck price on Amazon
iGB Acebeam X60M15 oz10 x 6 x 5 in18650 lithium battery, impact resistant up to 1.2 meters, waterproof, carrying case.Check price on Amazon
SOG Dark Energy4.8 oz6 x 1 x 1 inMulti-operating modes: tactical strobe, momentary, reading, limited lifetime warrantyCheck price on Amazon

Features to Consider Before Buying 

Before running out to the store and picking up any old flashlight, there are some basic features that you need to look at, which indicate the level of performance of your flashlight. Based on each of these features, you can decide what exact type of LED light you want. Keep in mind each feature is very important, but one more be more relevant than another, depending on what use will you give to the light.

Light Output

Light is measured in lumens. What’s being measured is the intensity of the light that’s coming out of the flashlight. Now, some flashlights may come with multiple light settings, which will give you a low, medium or high light output. Hence why the lumens are the key factor, as they will help you measure the strength of the output.

LED Flashlight

In flashlights, light output can range from 20 lumens, which is compared to reading light, all the way to 1800 lumens, which are comparable to 100 watt light bulb. And so on and so forth. The more lumens, the stronger the light will be. Choose accordingly to the use you intend on giving to the light.

Battery Type

Depending on what you’re going to be using your flashlight for, there are a variety of different batteries that are available.

  • Rechargeable – They are built with lithium-ion batteries that are charged using a USB connection to an AC, DC outlet, solar panel or computer. These flashlights are usually slightly pricier than the average flashlight, but they pay off due to their lack of maintenance since you don’t need to purchase batteries for it.
  • Renewable – These are typical for survival flashlights, where winding or cranking it up charges the built-in battery. These usually don’t last long, however, but they are very helpful in emergency situations as they run independently.
  • Disposable – That means that you’ll need to use AA or AAA to run the flashlight. These are the most common type of battery for flashlights. However, they have a higher running cost. 

Battery Time

You should pay attention to how long your battery will last you. Run time is measured in hours and illustrates the performance of your flashlight’s light over time. Some batteries will produce strong light and suddenly cut out, whereas other flashlights will decrease over time.

LED Flashlight

If your main purpose is to use it just as a gadget to have at home, you will not be using it for extended periods of time and the battery life will not be as relevant. However, if you use it as a tactical light for your weapon, or as a headlight for night walks or emergencies, you want to make sure the battery life will be a long one.

Size and Weight

Are you using this as an emergency flashlight or will be using this flashlight to go camping? You’ll want to keep the weight and size in mind when choosing a flashlight. You don’t want to buy a really heavy one if all you are doing is going camping.

Larger lights may not produce more light, however, they may be able to last longer compared to smaller flashlights due to their battery size. As a result, it’s likely for them to weigh more than the smaller ones. Headlights are normally small, lightweight, and ideal for traveling or camping.

Type of Flashlight

This is a key factor that shouldn’t be overlooked. What is the purpose for which you are buying an LED flashlight? Are you going camping, suing it to keep at home in case of emergencies, for caving? Well, once you have defined the purpose you will need to choose the type: head light, hand light, emergency light, tactical, or regulated. All of these are different, and serve different purposes.

LED Flashlight

Head lights are very common and a favorite amongst experts, they are not as powerful, but they are excellent for caving, camping, hiking and especially emergencies. However, a tactical one can come in handy if you are planning to use it with your rifle or weapon. A handheld one is normally a bit bigger and more powerful. It is up to what you need it for, but the type is a key aspect to consider. 

Top Products on Today’s Market 

Below you will find the seven best LED models in the market. We made a thorough analysis of each one, taking a look at the most important specs, a good description and then analyzing the pros and the cons. Hopefully, by the end of the read, you will know with certainty which one is the right one for you.

SureFire P2X Fury LED Flashlight SureFire P2X Fury LED Flashlight

Price: $120 – $170 

Weight: 7 oz

Dimensions: 6 x 3 x 1 in

Specific features: LED light emitter, two output levels: 15 lumens and 600 lumens, micro-textured reflector, aluminum body, dual-output click switch.

Best use: Outdoors activities, casual use

Description: The SuureFire P2X Fury LED Flashlight is highly efficient and indestructible with its aerospace aluminum build. What’s great about this flashlight is that it’s pocket-sized, so you’ll be able to take this flashlight along with you anywhere.

It also comes with two different light outputs, 15 Lumens and 600 Lumens that allow you to be able to use it for close to medium distances. When you want to switch from a low light to a high light, you simply click the switch and can change the light within seconds.

The design of the flashlight also gives it an outdoor; military feel which prevents it from getting any scratches or dents. This flashlight is extremely resistant, which is what makes it a great multi-purpose LED flashlight.

A good feature is the weight; being only 7 ounces it pretty much works for any occasion. You can either keep it at home in case of an emergency (also thanks to the 600 Lumens high light), as well as take it on trips or camping weekends, as it’s small, lightweight and fits anywhere.

PROS:

  • Lightweight
  • High lumen output
  • Extremely resistant 

CONS:

  • Battery life is a bit short 

Related: The Surefire Lithium Batteries are the set that you want an probably should buy with this LED light. That way you will be sure to have another set in case it runs out of battery.

Check the price on Amazon

Supernova Guardian LED Flashlight Supernova Guardian LED Flashlight

Price: $40 – $150 

Weight: 19.2 oz

Dimensions: 2 x 1.8 x 1.8 in

Specific features: CREE XM-L U2 LED bulb, large focus area, 5 operating modes, BrightStart Memory Technology, Self Defense features, remote pressure switch, 2 rechargeable lithium batteries, 3 AAA alkaline batteries, battery charger, waterproof finish.

Best use: Night and tactical use

Description: If you need a bright light, well, then the Supernova Guardian LED Flashlight is one of the best LED flashlight for you. There are many features on this flashlight, which are intelligently designed. Firstly, the aluminum coating prevents any scratches or dents on the flashlight itself, making it highly durable and resistant to shock.

The Supernova Guardian comes with self-defense features that include strobe mode which assists in disorienting attackers as well as a stainless steel ridged striking bezel, which can really do some damage. It also comes with 5 operating modes: high, medium, low, strobe and SOS.

These options make it a great flashlight if you’re out in the wild or using it at night.

The battery is a rechargeable lithium battery, which provides the flashlight with full power. In addition, it also comes with 3 AAA alkaline batteries just in case you forget to charge your batteries. What even makes it better is that the Supernova Guardian comes with a 5-year manufacturer warranty.

PROS:

  • Ideal for night and tactical use
  • Comes with 2 rechargeable batteries, so no need to constantly buy new ones
  • 5 operating modes for your own choice 

CONS:

  • The brightness isn’t as good as expected or advertised
  • Batteries sometimes come defective and won’t charge 

Related: The Supernova Ion Battery Pack is a good set of batteries to buy with this flashlight. In case the batteries are defective, you can use these as spare ones.

Check the price on Amazon

Streamlight Protac HL Flashlight Streamlight Protac HL Flashlight

Price: $70 – $140 

Weight: 5.6 oz

Dimensions: 5.2 x 1.4 x 1.4 in 

Specific features: 3 operating modes, waterproof body, C4 LED technology, LED solid state power regulation, anti-roll face cap, aircraft aluminum design.

Best use: Tactical use

Description: The Streamlight Protac HL Flashlight uses 750 lumens of bright light to help guide your way. It’s currently one of the brightest flashlights in the ProTac series. Furthermore, this model offers the latest in LED technology as well as 3 different operating modes. You’ll have the option of choosing low, medium and high lumens, which is ideal for tactical lights, as depending on the place you are, you might want different brightness levels for better aim or simply to better find your way around.

What we really liked is that it’s small enough to be pocket-sized, however, it’s bright enough to use for tactical purposes. It also comes with a removable pocket clip and a holster for easy carrying. Batteries are required for this flashlight and have an average battery life of 1.5 hours of continual use. Although 1.5 hours of continual use is great, we still recommend you getting a separate pair, because with tactical purposes in mind, you never know how long you will be needing it and an extra set is better than nothing.

PROS:

  • 3 different lumens modes, all good
  • Good size and weight
  • Good battery life 

CONS:

  • Does not include batteries 

Related: The Streamlight Tactical Holster is the ideal add-on to this tactical light. Buy it to lace the flashlight in the holster and better place it on your weapon.

Check the price on Amazon

Nitecore MH25GT LED Flashlight Nitecore MH25GT LED Flashlight

Price: $70 – $80 

Weight: 9.6 oz

Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.6 x 1.6 in 

Specific features: 960 lumens, runtime of up to 28 hours, rechargeable battery

Best use: Multipurpose

Description: The Nitecore MH25GT LED Flashlight is a great multipurpose tool. With 960 lumens, it gives off a powerful light, which is great if you’ll be using it at night. The best part of the Nitecore is the long-lasting rechargeable battery.

Not only can you recharge it, but it also has a runtime of up to 28 hours, which is one of the best battery lives out there for any flashlight. It fits comfortably in the palm of your hand and its rugged design prevents any external and internal damage. If you’re looking for a solid flashlight that can be used in any environment, then this is a secured buy.

This light comes with 4 brightness modes, which make it very versatile depending on the setting in which it is going to be used, but for a tactical or multi-purpose light, 4 settings are more than enough. Then, it includes a USB charging port, which is one of the most innovative features available, as you can charge it pretty much anywhere.

PROS:

  • USB charging port
  • Excellent battery life
  • 4 good brightness modes 

CONS:

  • The materials it is made with, especially the rubber, aren’t very durable, especially after contact with water 

Related: The Nitecore Battery Charger is a great add-on to this flashlight. Recharge the batteries of the flashlight wherever you go.

Check the price on Amazon

Sunwayman V11R LED Flashlight Sunwayman V11R LED Flashlight

Price: $40 – $50 

Weight: 1.8 oz

Dimensions: 3.3 x 0.9 x 0.9 in

Specific features: Lumen output: 1-90; turbo 500, runtime: 1.5-35hrs, beam distance: 130m, tactical forward switch, waterproof body, digital sensor magnetic control system, lifetime of up to 50,000 hours, infinite variable output switch, lithium battery, clear tempered glass lens, holster.

Best use: Tactical

Description: The Sunwayman V11R LED Flashlight is one of the best LED flashlights on the market. If you’re looking for longevity, then here you go. It has a lifetime of up to 50,000 hours, with a runtime of up to 35 hours.

This flashlight will also cover great distances with able to light 130 m ahead of you. The body itself is highly durable and made with aerospace-grade aluminum, which prevents any dents or scratches from occurring. The lens is made from clear tempered glass, which is also scratch-proof. If you’re planning on being around water, this flashlight is also waterproof. It’s extremely lightweight, weighing only 1.8 ounces and can fit into any pocket.

Sunwayman is a highly reputable company which produces high-quality flashlights, and this is one is a perfect example of their craftsmanship. The flashlight is well known for how resistant or strong it is, and especially for how long it will last.

PROS:

  • Great affordable price
  • Good durability
  • The lens is very resistant 

CONS:

  • The brightness isn’t the best 

Related: The Ultrafire Puch Hoslter For Flashlights is a great item to buy with this or other tactical LED flashlights. It is perfect for placing the lights in the pouch and then attaching it to your bag or belt.

Check the price on Amazon

Eagletac G25C2 LED Flashlight Eagletac G25C2 LED Flashlight

Price: $140 – $160 

Weight: 4.8 oz

Dimensions: 5.9 x 1 x 1.55 in

Specific features: Lumens 1180, maximum runtime: 90 hours, 1 output mode, maximum throw: 284 meters, waterproof, battery not included

Best use: Tactical, outdoors, camping, night hiking

Description: The Eagletac G25C2 LED Flashlight is one of the best flashlights if you’re looking for with a tactical design. The light is very bright as it has 1180 lumens. Meaning, you’ll be able to see anything in front of you up to 284 meters – not bad, right? It’s highly durable as well as waterproof, so you’ll be able to throw it around without having to worry about damaging it.

However, there is a downside to the EagleTac. It doesn’t come with batteries nor a battery charger, so you’ll have to purchase those separately.

That’s really the only con to purchasing this flashlight. However, if you need a flashlight that’s high quality and one you’ll use, then it’s worth the investment. It comes with a tail cap switch to turn it on and off, and only one operating mode. This flashlight, only takes 2 lithium batteries, however, once you get the battery charger, your running costs are low. 

PROS:

  • Excellent brightness thanks to good lumens
  • Waterproof 

CONS:

  • Doesn’t include batteries
  • Battery life isn’t as long due to the powerful luminosity 

Related: The Tangsfire Battery Charger is a good idea for an add-on to this light. Buy the charger with batteries to recharge them every time the Eagletac runs out of battery life.

Check the price on Amazon

Thrunite TN32 CW Tactical Flashlight Thrunite TN32 CW Tactical Flashlight

Price: $80 – $100 

Weight: 4.8 oz

Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.4 x 4.6 in

Specific features: Lumen of 1150, beam distance: 1043 meters, streamline body design, anti-abrasive finish, aircraft grade aluminum and copper circuit, lithium battery powered.

Best use: Tactical, enforcement

Description: If you’re really looking for a heavy-duty flashlight, then this is the one. This really is a flashlight designed for those who are flashaholics. The ThruNite TN32 CW Tactical Flashlight is no joke. It has 1150 lumens, which is enough beam distance to reach 1043 meters, ideal for anyone interested in using it as a tactical light, but also as an emergency and rescue one.

The copper circuit warehouse prevents overheating and the aircraft-grade aluminum creates a durable body, which won’t be vulnerable to dents and scratches.

The lens is made from ultra-clear tempered glass, which is covered, in an anti-reflective coating. In terms of body, the streamline design is easy to handle and also has tactical knurling for a sturdy grip. There is also strobe mode, which can be used in both emergency and tactical uses.

This flashlight was specifically designed for police enforcement, hunting, self-defense and Search & Rescue, so if you’re looking for something that will last, this is it.

PROS:

  • Powerful lumens
  • The body is extremely resistant
  • Excellent for emergency and rescue operations
  • Great durability 

CONS:

  • Too heavy to be carried anywhere 

Related: The Orbtronic Batteries are the ideal set of batteries to keep this flashlight charged and running. Buy a set or more to have spare ones and never have any trouble during any emergency.

Check the price on Amazon

iGB 18650 Flashlights Acebeam X60M LED Flashlight iGB 18650 Flashlights Acebeam X60M LED Flashlight

Price: $200 – $400 

Weight: 15 oz

Dimensions: 10 x 6 x 5 in

Specific features: 18650 lithium battery, impact resistant up to 1.2 meters, waterproof, carrying case.

Best use: Multipurpose

Description: The iGB 18650 Flashlights Acebeam X60M LED Flashlight is one of the fancier models on the market. We wouldn’t recommend this for tactical or enforcement purposes – you’d want something smaller in size. However, this is a great LED flashlight to use for general use.

It comes it a handy carrying case so you can keep it dust free and safe. Like some of the more expensive LED flashlights, it also doesn’t come with batteries or charger, so you’ll have to purchase them separately.

However, this can shine some light. Actually, its maximum brightness is 10,000 lumens, which can reach a distance of 525 meters. It’s highly durable and made with aluminum alloy and finished with an anti-abrasive coating.

The lens is made from ultra-clear tempered glass with an anti-reflective coating, which can achieve up to 98% light transmittance. This flashlight is no joke, it’s the Bentley’s of flashlights. Its streamline body is designed to allow the flashlight to run at its maximum potential, which is exactly what the Acebeam X60M does.

PROS:

  • Great durability
  • Fantastic brightness
  • Includes a carrying case 

CONS:

  • Very expensive
  • Heavy
  • No batteries 

Related: This flashlight doesn’t include batteries, and the Nitecore Rechargeable Batteries can be used with it. Buy them to have enough charge all the time.

Check the price on Amazon

SOG Dark Energy LED Flashlight SOG Dark Energy LED Flashlight

Price: $25 – $40 

Weight: 4.8 oz

Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 1 in 

Specific features: On and off switch, 722 lumens, multi-operating modes: tactical strobe, momentary, reading, 40-percent and 100-percent, includes rechargeable battery, limited lifetime warranty. 

Best use: Tactical

Description: The pocket-sized SOG Dark Energy LED Flashlight is a great tool designed by SOG specialty knives. Each product of SOG is designed with the assistance of the founder and chief engineer Spencer Frazer.

This brand is highly used among law enforcement and military. But, it’s time to look at the flashlight itself. It has an on and off switch, bright with light having 722 lumens. Its design is sleek and is made with the slip-free material. It includes a rechargeable battery, which as you’ve seen with other flashlights is not usually included.

In addition, SOG Dark Energy also comes with a battery charger so you won’t have to go and purchase them separately.  It comes with 5 operating modes: 100-percent, 40-percent, reading level, tactical strobe, and momentary one.

The beams of the flashlight are clean with no dark spots and have an optical grade polycarbonate lens. Its runtime has a maximum of 32 hours, which is great for an LED flashlight.

PROS:

  • Affordable price
  • Good lumens and brightness
  • 5 operating modes
  • Includes batteries 

CONS:

  • The clip isn’t very good
  • Durability can be an issue 

Related: Since the clip isn’t the best quality, the Airsoftpeak Flashlight Pouch is a good item to buy alongside this flashlight, that way you can put in the pouch and then clip the pouch to your belt or bag.

Check the price on Amazon

Wrap Up

These are the 9 best LED flashlights on the market. Now that you know what flashlights are worth investing in, you simply need to decide what you’re going to be using it for. However, don’t forget that there are key features to consider one very single model, one of them being the battery time or life!

Closeup of hand holding LED bulb on a flashlight

We are still sure that after reading this article you will be able to make an informed purchase. We handed you important facts and information that will make you buy with confidence. An LED flashlight will go from being an emergency item, tt actually being a useful gadget thanks to the knowledge you now have about them.

If you choose one of the flashlights reviewed above, you will not be disappointed in your decision. Are there any that we left out? Consider sharing your experiences with your own LED flashlight in the comments below, we’d really appreciate hearing your feedback.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jerry Mueller
Jerry Mueller

Jerry ‘Boy Scout’ Mueller spends 99% of his time camping or teaching others how to live in the wild. He became an Eagle Scout which is the highest rank attainable in the Boy Scouting division when he was 17 and after that he still lives the scout life. Jerry always plans neatly every trip, takes leadership very seriously and if you listen to his tips and stories, you can learn tons of useful things.

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