The Best Tactical Flashlights

You know what really sucks? Having a cheap flashlight that isn’t reliable. When looking for a tactical flashlight, you’re looking for the best of the best. A flashlight that’s going to work time and time again and one that has absolutely blinding power to illuminate anything in front of it from a distance.

best tactical flashlight

Don’t get caught up in lumens alone. For most cheap tactical flashlights, the lumen rating is drastically off from reality.

In this post, we found a few of the very best tactical flashlights on the market today that are worth your money. Let’s get started below.

Fenix Flashlights E12 130-Lumen Tactical Flashlight

A rather small flashlight that runs on a single AA battery at a low price and won’t throw a fit every time you use it. At 130 lumens (with settings for 50 and 8 lumens for softer light and longer battery life), this is a wonderful, low-cost flashlight that has all the normal features and no gimmicks.

The case is made from precision-machined aluminum alloy and the light comes with a lifetime warranty, so there’s no worry if you get a lemon, just trade it for another one. At the lowest setting, it’s rated for 40 continuous hours, and will run for six and a half hours when set to 50 lumens.

On the brightest setting, don’t expect to get more than 3 hours of continuous use. It’s lightweight (less than 2 ounces), so mounting it on a full size pistol shouldn’t throw off the balance very much.

It’s also waterproof at 2 meters for up to 30 minutes. Fenix backs their products and they want to make sure that you have a dependable flashlight that will last for years, and at this price, who could argue with that? It would be nice if it came with a clip or case, but for what it is, this is a really good deal.

Fenix Flashlights FX-PD35TAC

If you want some extra features, then this might be the perfect flashlight to scale up the previous Fenix. For the sake of putting out 1000 lumens of torch power, you won’t be running this light on AA batteries. Instead it will take a single 18650 for two CR123A Lithium cells. A metal button on the side allows you to set the the switching modes, leaving the rear switch to do what it needs to: turn the flashlight on or off.

As a weapon light, the one-inch tube is perfect for mounting to any platform (like as an AR-15 flashlight), simply add some standard rings and be done with it, and the ease of mode switching makes it perfect. The rear switch also has a temporary on feature for quick peeks at your surroundings, and for tactical use as a stun light.

Rugged and high quality with multiple brightness settings to find the perfect balance of output versus battery life for every scenario. This is one flashlight you won’t ever regret spending the extra cash on. It does it all, and performs admirably in most circumstances. It also comes with a removable belt clip.

SOG Dark Energy Aluminum 550 lm LED Tactical Flashlight with Belt Clip

For any piece of tactical equipment where you would like form married happily to function, SOG is a go-to, and any list of tactical flashlights would be incomplete without mentioning the Dark Energy. This all-aluminum 550 lumen torch is bright enough for most applications, and has several settings, including 100%, 40%, reading, and tactical strobe. It also features a momentary-on setting.

Powered by 2 CR123A batteries (included), it weighs in at 6.4 ounces, which makes it pretty heavy in the arena of hand-held tactical lights, but from SOG we expect that the extra weight is utilized to keep the shell rock solid, so that you never have to worry about it coming apart.

At full brightness, you will drain the batteries in about 77 minutes, but if you are using the flashlight for everyday things, and the reading strength is enough, you should get over 24 hours of light from this little monster, and the reading light is still 25 lumens, which is plenty for most normal tasks. It’s actually quite nice when you are trying to read serial numbers on steel plates at three in the morning, but that’s another story.

The bottom line is that this is one mean tactical flashlight for not a lot of money.