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Years back, flashlights used to be big and unwieldy and less efficient in terms of battery life and brightness. Today, they are a lot smaller, more portable, brighter and rechargeable, eliminating the worry of having big enough pockets to fit in and having to buy new batteries.
With a bright LED flashlight, you can have an easy time working in the dark. It can light up the world’s dangers so you can confront your fears one step at a time. These devices have becomes popular with everyone from military/law enforcement personnel through to hikers, backpackers, campers, dog walkers, fishermen and children enjoying their absolute brightness.
However, finding the best LED torch for you may be somewhat overwhelming. Fortunately, we have shortlisted some interesting and innovative LED flashlights that will comfortably help you walk into the darkness without fear. Whatever your reason for needing an LED torch, we are certain you will find a match from our list.
Because we understand your need to find the right device, we have also prepared a detailed buying guide so you will walk into any retail store confident of coming out with the best flashlight. Even if you want to order online, at least the information in our guide will help you to understand what to look for in your ideal torch.
Below is the winner of our ‘Best Pick Award’ the OLight SR1 Baton LED Torch which, after more than 30 hours of research over a 2 year period, and beginning our comparison with over 28 different LED torches, is what we consider, to be the Best LED Torch for most people. Outstanding quality, shock and waterproof, a great lighting output and many useful features such as memory and SOS modes. It truly is an amazing LED torch that will last for many years.
What you can learn from our buyer’s guide and our best picks
Below we start with our Top 8 LED torches, (with both pocket and head torches included) and we have narrowed these down from over 30 models to bring you what we consider, to be the best models on the market today and who they are best suited for.
After this, we have a detailed buyer’s guide that contains all the information you need to decide which torch might be best for you and what the technical specification actually means if you are not up to date with the latest jargon.
We hope that you enjoy reading through our guide. So why not dig in to see which models made it onto our recommended LED torches list below.
Our Top 7 Pocket LED Torch Reviews
1. OLIGHT S1R Baton LED Torch
The Olight SR1 Baton LED Torch is a compact illumination tool with an incredibly higher than average output of 900 lumens when used in ‘Turbo S mode’, which is one of many modes derived from a CREE XM-L2 LED.
The torch has 6 brightness levels, of which three are “hidden”. They are moonlight, low, mid, high, turbo, turbo S and strobe. Each mode produces a given amount of lumens and runtime as follows: Strobe – 900 lumens: 1.5 mins, Turbo – 600 lumens: High – 300 lumens: 1 hour, Medium – 60 lumens: 33 hours, and Moonlight – 0.5 lumens: 33 hours.
Another impressive feature of the S1R is its TIR reflector that produces a large, defined beam. It sheds light up to a distance of 145 metres, which is a solid throw for such a tiny torch. On top of that, this torch features a two-timer setting where it will automatically turn the torch off after either 3 minutes when in short-timer mode, or 9 minutes if in the longer 9-minute mode.
When it comes to the build, the S1R button is durable and reliable. It is made of 6061-T6 aluminium with scratch resistance, waterproof and impact resistance properties. The torch has an IPX8 water ingress rating, meaning it is protected against submersion up to 1.5 metres. The switch has a good, solid feel as well for long-term functionality. The switch is made from a rubber material and seems smooth enough with a nice click as you switch between modes.
A pocket clip is an important feature of an EDC torch and this one comes with a removable sturdy stainless steel clip. The clip comes in handy when working hands-free is a priority or when you simply need to keep the device within arm’s reach. It can be hung on a belt, backpack and pocket, literally anywhere the clip can hook onto.
This rechargeable EDC (every day carry) flashlight is powered by a 550mAh RCR123 re-chargeable battery, this comes included with the LED torch along with a magnetic USB charging cable and velvety smooth carry case. The charging cable also has an LED display that shows red when charging the torch and green when fully charged, this it does in around an hour which is equally impressive.
Last but certainly not least, the box also includes a lanyard, pouch and user manual. We like the 5-year warranty on offer which we believe sums up this remarkable little torch.
- Gives out five brightness modes plus turbo mode, making it perfect for various different situations.
- The torch offers a simple charging option via magnetic contact charging.
- Can be placed on ferrous metal surfaces for hands-free operation thanks to a magnetic tailcap.
- Includes a lockout feature that prevents accidental activation.
- Fully waterproof up to 2 metres.
- Extremely lightweight at only 54g.
- Fast charging time of just 1 hour using USB.
- 5 year OLIGHT’s warranty for complete peace of mind.
- A bit expensive for a small torch.
The Olight S1R Baton LED Torch is a small device that is capable of lighting up acres of darkness. This is evident from its impressive beam distance of 145m max. Six levels of brightness ensure that you can produce just enough light depending on the need. The fact that this compact flashlight can be hooked to another object, attached to a ferrous metal surface or used tail standing simply promotes the much-desired hands-free working.
We couldn’t find any hiccups with this tiny torch and we tend to believe it’s worth every penny. If you are looking for a very good quality compact and bright LED torch, the OLIGHT S1R is one you should seriously consider.
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2. Olight Perun Led Head Torch
BEST DETACHABLE PICK
The Olight Perun Led Head Torch is an impressive multi-use illumination tool that works both as a handheld device and a headlamp. It comes with a comfortable head strap featuring a silicon mount that allows the torch to be held securely in place.
This torch arguably boasts the strongest lumens in the industry of up to 2300 lumens, and that has earned it the reputation of being the brightest single 18650 battery flashlight. The battery itself comes included and there is a low battery indicator to keep your usage in check. OLIGHT supplies a magnetic charging cable to use accordingly as well. The battery runtime will depend on the mode outputs you are using but previous customers have acknowledged it’s really good.
It has five brightness modes that are powered differently to suit a range of applications. With a simple button operation, you can adjust the light mode from moonlight to low, medium, high and turbo. Brightness increases or fades gradually so as to protect your eyes from the stimulation caused by sudden brightness adjustments. In addition, there is a button lockout function that prevents accidental mode activation. Also, note that the farthest beam distance is 153m.
The main body is made from Aluminium alloy and it seems very strong. We like the tough plastic on the front of the strap, which firmly holds the main unit in its place. OLIGHT designers have also added a metal clip that allows for clipping the torch on your jacket or waistband.
In addition, the torch has a magnetic bottom that allows placement onto certain metallic surfaces to provide another hands-free light. Boasting the highest water ingress rating (IPX8), this versatile torch withstands submersion for more than 30 minutes.
Overall, it makes a great choice for wildlife excursions at night, hunting, camping, walking trails and many other activities that call for bright illumination.
- Multi-use torch that works both as a handheld light and a headlamp.
- Available in two different versions; cold white and neutral white.
- Gives five different light outputs including moonlight, low, medium, high and turbo.
- Gradual brightness fading when switching between light modes to protect eyes from the shock caused by sudden brightness changes.
- Includes a special S.O.S mode that signals for help in times of emergencies.
- Has an easy to use ON/OFF side switch, which also accesses all the light outputs.
- Includes a low battery warning to keep you alert at all times.
- Internally rechargeable using OLIGHT’s unique magnetic charging system.
- Comes with a 5-year warranty for full peace of mind.
- Gets a little too hot in full turbo mode.
- Somewhat bulkier when used as a headlamp.
This is a great head torch with top-of-the-range features. The obvious selling point here is multi-purpose functionality. The various light modes are useful and easy to adjust and a little simpler than the smaller OLIGHT torch that is our ‘Best Pick’ as it has fewer modes to remember. As much as the torch can produce up to 2300 lumens, 600 lumens on the high setting are ideal for most activities. The highest setting can help when you do need excessive light.
The device has a strong construction with excellent waterproof and shockproof properties compared to most models. Even though is fairly expensive compared to a lot of models, we think the price is just right for the design, versatility and performance. With the backing of a 5-year warranty, the Olight Perun Led Head Torch is a worthwhile investment for those looking for a serious torch.
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3. Ledlenser P7.2 Professional LED Torch
The Ledlenser P7.2 Professional LED Torch is an improved version of the P7 with more brightness than its predecessor. It offers even more in design, durability and efficiency. It has 320 max lumen output coming from its updated CREE LED light chip.
It features LEDLENSER’s very own Advanced Focus System, a unique combination of lens and reflector, which allows a smooth transition from a homogenous low beam to a sharply focused high beam. The flood beam is usually good for close-up visibility whilst the spot beam is good for long visibility. The lens has additionally been re-configured to shine brighter over an increased lighting diameter for improved performance.
This torch integrates a larger and responsive Dynamic Switch which offers 3 levels of brightness; Power, Low Power and Boost. The switch is even easier to operate when wearing gloves on those cold nights. There is also a Speed Focus that encourages smooth single-handed focusing from flood to spot beam.
The P7. 2 is nicely designed with an elegant black finish over high-quality, aircraft-grade aluminium that looks beautiful as well as allows for an improved grip. It also makes it pretty lightweight at only 100g. Its torch uses 4AAA batteries which LEDLENSER has done the favour to provide.
Most torches claim to be waterproof yet without proof. The P7. 2 has been tried and tested and passed water ingress protection ratings (IPX) between IPX4 and IPX8. So you can rely on this torch even in the wettest and windiest conditions.
When it comes to applications, this torch can be relied upon on many occasions. From walking the dog in the late evenings to working on-site at night, it is a great companion. Whether you are fishing the night away, policing the streets at night or saving lives on the seas, the P7.2 is extremely dependable. Even night camping is easier with the P7. 2 on your side.
To assure you of the quality of this torch, LEDLENSER covers the P7. 2 torches with an industry-leading warranty of 5 years. Its intelligent modular construction means that should a replacement part be required, there will be no need to discard the whole torch. This ensures unbeatable long-term user value.
- Clever modular design; every part is replaceable if need be.
- Wide beam coverage and the beam is adjustable between two settings; flood and spot.
- Highly flexible in terms of brightness because it offers three different brightness settings.
- Extremely lightweight at just 100g because it has been made using aircraft grade aluminium.
- An all-rounder torch for use in many applications.
- It comes with a 5-year warranty.
- It eats batteries real quick.
The Ledlenser P7.2 Professional LED Torch is a very popular torch and quite reliable in many situations. We really like its design including the black finish and aluminium construction. It simply looks stunning. We also like that the batteries come included so you have no worry of needing to pick some up straight away. The adjustable settings in terms of beams and brightness are great for your convenience whilst we find it waterproof enough to use on those wet and windy days. Its 5-year warranty is also something that you don’t get anywhere else.
On the downside, our research found that it is not the brightest torch available, however, it is still incredibly useful as it is and the batteries don’t last that long either. That’s a bit of a concern bearing in mind how much you pay for it.
Overall, we commend it for its great design and durable construction. Anyone looking for a torch that will offer long-term value can never go wrong with the P7. 2.
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4. Vansky 800 Lumen Cree XML2 T6 LED Pocket Torch
Another one from Vansky, this model is cheaper than its brother on our list but don’t be fooled by the price and imagine it is of low quality. Actually, this is a #1 Best Seller on Amazon.co.uk and a favourite for many people (at the time of writing), it had over 1,400 reviews. The Vansky Led Torch Pocket Torch 800 Lumen Cree XML2 T6 is a light and compact tactical flashlight with incredibly high outputs.
It is a perfect go-to accessory for every occasion thanks to its 5 different flashing modes. You can choose between high, medium, low beam and strobe as well as there being an SOS switch mode. Furthermore, it is a zoomable red light torch. The beam is adjustable as well and you have flood and spot beam options. Changing the modes is also easy. Your first click puts the light on full brightness. Simply press down the rear button slightly and release it to switch the modes. Do not fully press the button.
There are two power options with this torch; you can either use 1 x 18650 3.6v / 3.7v or 3 AAA batteries. It comes with 3 AAA batteries included, but you will need to buy the 18650 if you need to use it. Supplied with this torch is a battery holder for the 3AAA batteries and a plastic white tube for using the 18650 battery. Its white LED is long-lasting and will see you through more than 30,000 hours of bright light. It is very powerful and has a bright effect so make sure you don’t direct the light directly towards people.
A truly excellent and easily handheld torch, it features heavy-duty aluminium housing that is not only scratch and fade resistant but also looks pretty. For your peace of mind, the Vansky® Led Torch Pocket Torch 800 Lumen Cree XML2 T6 comes with 45 days money-back guarantee and a one-year hassle-free warranty. They have friendly, easy-to-reach support that will be at your service in case of anything.
- Highly versatile torch that offers two power options – 3 AAA batteries or 18650 battery.
- It comes with 5 light modes and 2 beam options for every situation.
- Features an excellent, durable construction thanks to the aluminium alloy housing.
- Suitable for self-defence situations due to its super bright light with blinding effect.
- It has a long-lasting white LED – lasts for over 30,000 hours.
- It comes with money back guarantee plus 1-year hassle-free warranty.
- It requires you to go through all the light modes to switch it off.
- Not rechargeable.
The Vansky Led Torch Pocket Torch 800 Lumen Cree XML2 T6 is another little guy that will efficiently light up your outdoor adventures for many days. The 5 light modes plus adjustable beams are extremely convenient for a variety of different situations. It is small enough to fit in your pocket, handbag or even your car compartment so you can take it anywhere with you.
We also like the battery options that come with the torch, however, it is not rechargeable. Switching it off is a bit of a process but it is not a big deal. The price point is especially great.
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5. Maglite 2D LED Torch
Maglite is considered to be the day to day premium flashlight, their products are known for their superior build quality and durability due to their long-term experience in artistry, engineering and technology. The Maglite 2D LED Torch is evident of the thought that comes into play in all the Maglite flashlights.
Designed for both professional and consumer use, it features a powerful projecting beam that flashes out to up to 412 metres. By simply rotating the head, you can focus the beam to your desired projection, however, bear in mind that the torch is rated 168 lumens max. It uses CREE XP-E LED which is bright and energy-efficient, allowing the torch to run for a maximum of 6 hours and 45 minutes.
When it comes to the build, the head features a plastic window and a smooth reflector. The body features a Diamond Knurl design in the mid-section which offers an improved grip for the flashlight. The tail cap is flat for the Maglite 2D to stand straight whilst its water-resistant property means it can be used in the rain.
The torch is offered with a single battery configuration of which it’s a compact 2D cell version. The featured Energy Source Management technology balances brightness and battery life thus ensuring an extended runtime. Also worth mentioning is that the product comes with a limited lifetime warranty.
- It has a good runtime of up to 6h and 45min.
- The knurling design on the body provides excellent grip of the torch.
- Easy to adjust the beam by simply twisting the head.
- It has a good beam distance, up to 412m.
- It is water-resistant.
- It has no light modes.
- The beam can form holes in the middle when not well focused.
- It lacks provisions for more efficient batteries such as AAA, AA or 18650.
- It is a bit expensive for its design and basic functionality.
The Maglite 2D LED Torch is a basic design torch with some good features and some not so good features. Its beam length of 412m is great and it adjusts nicely, yet it forms holes and rings if the light is defocused. It only uses 2D cells which give a decent runtime but what happens next when they run out? You will need to buy new ones which can work out costly in the long run. It would have been better if it had a rechargeable option.
The construction is good but with the batteries included, this torch is a bit heavier than most other models. Basically, the Maglite 2D has found a balance between what it offers and what is lacking.
For someone looking for a classic torch for day to day use, the Maglite 2D can be a good place to start. Once the need for a rechargeable option creeps in, then you can advance in that direction.
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6. Ledlenser H14R.2 Rechargeable 3-in-1 Professional LED Head Lamp
BEST HEAD LAMP PICK
Designed for professional use, the Ledlenser H14R.2 Rechargeable 3-in-1 Professional LED Head Lamp takes personal lighting to a whole new level with its stunning performance and a brilliant fastening system. This allows it to function as a body lamp, mobile spotlight and belt torch.
It is amongst the powerful and technologically advanced head torches in the LEDLENSER models. Featuring LEDLENSER’s patented Advanced Focus System along with CREE Xtreme Light Chip, the headlamp zooms out sharp and focused white light up to a range of 300 metres when focused to spot beam. The flood beam is achieved with a simple turn of the head for close illumination.
The torch integrates a pre-programmed micro-chip that brings the intelligence of Smart Light Technology (SLT) to the user. The SLT is controllable from a multi-function wheel switch located on the battery pack. This technology gives you two energy modes; constant current and energy saving, 3 light programmes; easy low, easy power and signal, and 6 light modes; power, low power, boost, blink, dim and pulse. This means that you have a light for almost every situation.
There is a rear safety light with a red or blinking light option, this makes it easy for your colleagues to know where you are. Supplied with this battery are 1 Li-ion battery pack, belt hook, mains charger, USB cable and user manual. In addition, it features a low battery message which informs you when you need to charge the batteries. Of course, you can do using USB charging connectors or from the mains.
While carrying some other torches, they light up accidentally when being carried in tight pockets, the Ledlenser H144. 2 features a transport lock that prevents such a case that usually drains the battery unnecessarily. The torch weighs 340g which some may find a bit heavier compared to our Aennon model but it is still manageable. It is also rated IPX4 which means it is ready to go in wet weather.
Like all other LEDLENSER lighting products, the Ledlenser H14R.2 Rechargeable 3-in-1 Professional LED Head Lamp comes with a 7-year warranty. Its modular construction means every part is replaceable so you will not have to discard the whole torch in case it needs repairs of any sort.
- It features advanced light settings for improved flexibility – 2 energy modes, 3 light programmes and 6 light modes.
- Integrated transport lock prevents the torch from accidentally switching on.
- It is highly waterproof with IPX4 rating.
- Features a low battery message system to let you know when to charge the device.
- Ideal for a variety of uses.
- Supplied with a rechargeable battery plus other useful accessories.
- It is a highly multi-functional torch which works a mobile spot light, body lamp or belt torch.
- It comes with an industry-leading 7-year warranty.
- There are complaints with the battery failing to charge at times. The on/off button on the battery pack is also easily, accidentally pressed.
- It is expensive.
The Ledlenser H14R.2 Rechargeable 3-in-1 Professional LED Head Lamp is a quite advanced model with top of the range features. For instance, it is so far the only model in our line-up with a low battery indicator. It is also the one with the most light modes, extra energy modes and light programmes. Then there is a transport lock which is a very useful feature if you are carrying the torch in a pocket or handbag. On top of all these and other features, it is backed by a 7-year warranty – the longest compared to the other products. Maybe that’s why it is so expensive.
There are still one or two issues with this torch, with the battery sector raising all sorts of complaints. Apart from that, the Ledlenser H14R.2 Rechargeable 3-in-1 Professional LED Head Lamp is an excellent recommendation to those who love sophisticated devices. But compared to the other models here, you have to spend a fortune to own this particular one.
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7. Aennon USB Rechargeable LED Head Torch
When you find yourself in the dark and want to be hands-free while you work on your project, go for a walk or even clean things up, a torch like the Aennon USB Rechargeable LED Head Torch is exactly what you need.
This particular head torch is easy to use with one single button control for powering it on and off. It comes with an easily adjustable elastic headband to fit any head size. Furthermore, it can fit around a hat, helmet, bike or even belt. With the torch on your head, you can turn it up to 60 degrees so as to focus the light where you need it and the beam can stay fixed in your preferred position. To make it more interesting, there are 4 light modes for you to play around with to get the exact level of brightness you want for any use. And that is possible with single button control.
The Aennon USB Rechargeable LED Head Torch simply makes close-up detailed work plus long-distance viewing a breeze thanks to the featured CREE LED and red LED. The red LED light is especially perfect for reading at night whilst preserving night vision and not disturbing others. It is a steady red LED so there is no frustrating light like in some other headlamps. The torch generates 220 lumens which encourage visibility up to 150 metres and the LED has a lifetime of approximately 30,000 hours.
At just 70g, this torch is ultra-lightweight and comfortable on your head even when you have worn it for many hours. That is why it is ideal for running in the late evening, night camping, night fishing, biking, caving and other outdoor activities. It is also a convenient thing during a power outage, home security, household repair, construction and auto repair. The fact that it features a waterproof construction also makes it ideal for a variety of situations. The torch is rated IPX4 on waterproofness grading it’s protected against spraying or splashing water from any angle. Basically, you can work, jog or walk in the rain without worry.
It uses a USB rechargeable battery and the USB charging cable is even supplied with this head torch. The torch can charge from any USB port in a matter of 4 -6 hours and provide up to 30 light hours from a single charge.
Aennon is so confident that you will love the torch that they have backed it with a 100% money-back guarantee. If you don’t like the torch for whatever reason, they will give back every penny or replace it if you wish to.
- Extremely ultra-lightweight torch weighing just 70g.
- It can fit any head size due to its elastic and adjustable headband.
- It is highly durable because it is waterproof, shock-resistant and has a very strong glass lens.
- Long battery life of up to 30 hours.
- Easy to use with a single button control.
- It features 4 light modes which are quite easy to select.
- Long LED lifetime up to 30,000 hours.
- Ideal for every situation.
- It comes with a 100% money-back guarantee for peace of mind.
- When pointed downwards to see where you are treading, some of the light spills into your eyes and thus distracts visibility.
- The beam distance is quite short.
The Aennon USB Rechargeable LED Head Torch is a top-quality head torch that is handy when hands-free operation is in use. It has awesome features that make it very convenient in a variety of situations. Its weight especially is something you can never feel. Its adjustable headband ensures anyone in your family or friends can use the torch. It comes with an easy to use button function which, of course, allows you to turn it on and off as well as select the light modes.
There are a few flaws with the torch concerning the battery life, poor visibility in some instances and a short beam distance. The good thing is, there is a money-back guarantee so if you are not pleased with the head torch in one way or the other, you can claim your full amount. Otherwise, we think it’s a great piece for an incredible price.
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8. Boruit Rechargeable LED Head Torch Light
The Boruit Rechargeable LED Head Torch Light with 4 Modes is a brilliant head torch with a great design. There are three light bulbs on the torch which generate a combined 6000 lumens. This is the latest version of the Boruit XM-L 3 x T6 headlamp which feature 4 light modes including low, middle, high and strobe. You can select your preferred mode with an easy slide switch on the front section. The LED bulbs have an average life of 100,000 hours implying that they will last for many years.
Made of aluminium alloy, the torch is very durable. It is designed to be waterproof so it can be used outdoors on rainy and windy days. However, you should not go diving with this torch and as such, do not put it into the water.
It is powered by 2 Lithium-ion batteries which you will find in the box and they are rechargeable. Supplied with it is a USB cable for charging the torch from almost anywhere, in the car, wall charger, power bank or any device with a USB port. It charges for about 6 hours and you will be good to go for your next activity.
It fits nicely on your head because it not only has a round headband, but also an extra band that runs across from the front to the back of your head. The headband is fully adjustable so it that can easily fit any head size. Boruit claims to offer excellent customer service and they welcome you to contact them via e-mail for any questions or concerns about their product. So if you buy one of these, you can rest assured that your investment is well protected.
- Long LED life up to 100,000 hours.
- It is very powerful – rated 6,000lm.
- Solid and waterproof construction which ensures it lasts for a long time.
- Features 4 light modes and they are easy to change via a slide switch.
- Supplied with rechargeable batteries plus a USB charger for all-round charging.
- It takes a long time to charge.
- It is a bit bulky on the head.
- The batteries have a short life.
The Boruit Rechargeable LED Head Torch Light with 4 Modes looks unique at first glance. It is well designed with the main bulb and two side bulbs and is said to produce 6,000lm – great. There are 4 adjustable light modes and it comes with rechargeable batteries. Being waterproof means you can use it outdoor for numerous activities like hunting, fishing, cycling and other outdoor activities.
The major issue with this torch is the batteries, there are even complaints that some come without them. The main concern is they take longer to charge and they still offer short hours of use. So maybe you just have to be ready for these consequences if you buy this torch.
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LED Torch Buyer’s Guide
LED flashlights come in various styles and sizes so it is important that you know your needs before buying one.
Types of LED Flashlights
Handheld LED flashlights
They are the widest range of flashlights and they usually come in a cylinder style. The length of the cylinders is usually about 8 to 10 inches and commonly use either C or D cell batteries. Most of them have an adjustable beam in terms of flood beam and spot beam.
These flashlights are popular with handymen/women, maintenance workers and homeowners. Generally, they are kept in bedside tables, kitchen drawers, glove boxes, toolboxes and consoles in water vessels. The popularity of handheld lights comes from their durable exteriors – usually made of aluminium alloy -brightness and long battery life.
Smaller handheld LEDs are also available and they offer the same features as the larger models. They usually use AA or AAA batteries and are even supplied with AC adaptors to charge their internal power sources. The smaller versions of LED lights are also lightweight and designed to allow low light use by changing the lens. This feature is usually popular with nighttime hunters and military personnel who practise light discipline while on manoeuvres.
Headlamp LED flashlights
These combine the power of an LED torch with hands-free convenience. They have elastic and adjustable headbands that make it possible to wear them on the head like a cap. This makes the LED headlamp a favourite for many groups of people, especially outdoor enthusiasts. They are also used by men and women who work outdoors like construction workers, miners, linemen and emergency first responders.
These lights come with different levels of brightness. This can go in excess of 1,000 lumens emitted from over 50 individual LEDs. They are usually battery-powered or rechargeable light with different grades of durability depending on how they are to be used.
Important flashlight terms that you need to know
- Lumens – this is a term you will hear about every other time when shopping for a flashlight (how it has 500, 800, 1000, etc. lumens). In a Layman’s, lumen refers to a unit of light or brightness. A completely dark room has 0 lumens of light. So, the more lumens a flashlight has, the brighter it is.
- Candela – it refers to the intensity of the beam. Also, the higher the candela, the stronger the beam.
What to look for in a LED flashlight
- Light output – it is measured in lumens. It is a great comparison feature but it does not fully determine the entire story about brightness. The beam distance, intensity and type all influence the effectiveness of light in various applications. Lumens range from as low as 20 – good for reading a book – to soaring heights of 5,000 lumens.
- Beam distance – this is basically how far the light can shine before the brightness declines to the equivalent of the light from a full moon. Full moon lighting is considered sufficient careful travel outdoors. Beam distance is measured in metres and it will vary with the selected brightness setting.
- Runtime – this is how long it takes the light output to fall to 10 percent of the rated output on the batteries, rounded to the nearest 1/4 hour. Light output will usually diminish over time, or remain constant for larger part then suddenly decrease. Some models come with a runtime graph and this provides the best illustration of the light’s performance over time. Runtime is measured in hours and is usually given for each light setting.
- Impact resistance – flashlights are usually tested by dropping them six times onto concrete at a rated distance to determine if the light will remain functional after accidental drops. It is also measured in meters. Note that this test does not determine the resistance of the light if run over by a car, striking other objects or being struck with another heavy object.
- Water-resistance – it is rated using the IPX system. It is an important consideration if you are going to use the light in wet conditions or around water bodies. For instance, a light with IPX4 rating means is it splash resistant from all angles. IPX7 means the light can undergo temporary immersion in water for up to 30 minutes at a depth of 1m. IPX8 implies the light can be submerged for up to 4 hours at a specific depth.
- Durability – this is important because you will want to use the torch for various outdoor purposes and some can get a little rough. As such, flashlights should be made of solid metal alloy and have a tough cover to prevent scratches. All the other components should be of high quality with anti-abrasion properties.
- Battery requirements – it is good to know the kind of power that the light you want to buy uses. Are they rechargeable or replaceable? This is entirely a personal preference and both have their own good and bad points. Most flashlights are powered by 18650 batteries which are fully rechargeable. Some even come with these batteries. Others have a non-rechargeable alternative for AAA batteries which you can make use of with an adapter and some models come with it too.
- Extra accessories – some flashlights come in kits that comprise additional accessories that you may be useful for your LED flashlight. It is not a very important but when available, it increases the convenience of using your light. These include flashlight batteries, chargers, USB cable, battery adapters and carry cases.
- Warranty – most basic flashlights have warranties from 1 to 5 years. The high-grade flashlights are often covered with a lifetime warranty from manufacturers.
Important flashlight features
- Light modes – a single light mode is adequate for general purpose. However, you will find models that offer two or more light modes such as high, medium and low. You will usually use more than one mode but having the option to throw a strong beam when needed is a plus. Remember the highest mode, usually the brightest, will give the shortest runtime. So it’s also good that you have the option of setting low brightness to increase runtime. Other models may have special modes such a strobe and SOS feature.
- Beam type – they come in flood and spot beams. The flood beam is good for close visibility while the spot beam is ideal for long-distance visibility.
- Controls – the style of on/off and mode switches is a priority for some people. Most models have either sliders or push buttons that are typically thumb operated.
- Size and weight – flashlights come in different lengths and build and choosing which is which is again, a personal preference. There are torches as small as 4 inches long while some full-sized security flashlights are longer than 10 inches.
It is evident that a flashlight is an extremely useful tool for many applications. Whether you plan to fish to at night, camp, work at a site or whatever night venture you have, a flashlight can be life changing. No one can deny the confidence a torch brings whenever you are caught up in the dark world.
By choosing a LED torch that meets your requirements in terms of brightness, runtime, range, durability and features, you will be making a modest and useful investment for forthcoming activities. We trust this guide and reviews will help you to settle on the best LED torch.
Last update on 2021-10-16 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API