Waiting for the best affordable tactical flashlight?
Well, the good news is you needn’t wait any longer!
Below are 8 the finest options that we have thoroughly side-by-side tested due to our criteria set. All of them are also categorized into two big groups: The handheld tactical flashlights and the weapon-mounted flashlights.
Here are the best affordable tactical flashlights you can buy in 2019:
- Best Overall: GearLight S1000
- Best For Self-defense: LED Tactical Flashlight
- Best For Emergency: Gearlight High-powered LED Flashlight S2000
- Best For Cycling: WUBEN 1200 Lumens Led Flashlight
- Best For Fishing: BYB 9 LED Mini Aluminum Flashlight
- Best For AR-15: Feyachi FL11-MB
- Best For Hog Hunting: VASTFIRE CREE LED Green Flashlight
- Highest Quality: Streamlight 88066
Handheld Tactical Flashlights
Best Overall: GearLight S1000
- Give 10 times brighter than old incandescent lights
- You have 5 multiple settings to adjust the beam zoom to use on different occasions
- Lightweight and indestructible – same durability as military tactical flashlights
- Made in the USA to ensure the quality
- When on zoom, it has some goofy square waffle light
Getting a tactical flashlight from a top brand is always calming. And this small, yet mighty Gearlight is a shining example for that.
With years of experience in creating lighting products, GearLight provides this flashlight with 10 times brighter than old incandescent lights.
And what it is made for, is a SINGLE 18650 lithium battery or 3 AAA batteries – an economical operating cost for every 2 hours of lighting.
The S1000 is also designed with durability in mind. It still stays intact from temporary underwater submerge, hours of freezing, or a 10-foot drop. Moreover, you’ve got 5 settings to adjust the beam zoom for specific situations.
|GearLight S1000 Specifications|
6.1 x 1.57 x 1.57 in
Light source type
Easily light up an entire room or focus in on objects up to 1000 feet away
Compact enough to fit in your pocket
Backpack or purse
The Gearlight S1000 has topped the charts in all of our criteria set, making it the best-overall tactical flashlight of this year.
Best For Self-defense: LED Tactical Flashlight
- Can easily turn on the flashlight by one hand
- Waterproof, durable, skid-proof and abrasion-resistant to bear different conditions
- Allow to adjust the brightness and focus range
- Offer up to 2000L to constantly blind the aggressor
- When the beam is restricted to the minimum, there is an odd line pattern
- Not helpful instruction
- Switching lighting options sometimes get out of sync
The BINWO tactical flashlight has some unique features that make it best for self-defense.
In detail, it is attached with a CREE XML T6 LED chip – also the latest technology known for phenomenal durability and illumination. Among 5 switchable settings, it’s able to deliver 2000L at the highest mode – nearly twice the GearLight.
You can also adjust the focus range to momentarily disorient attackers. It’s also lightweight enough that you can keep firmly in one hand while operating your handgun in the other if needed.
As made to prepare for potentially dangerous situations, the flashlight itself is ultra-durable – high-quality aluminum alloy, IPX-5 rating, abrasion resistance, and skid-proof ability. One big bonus is the push-button tail switch to allow one-handed operating with ease.
|LED Tactical Flashlight Specifications|
6.1 x 1.6 x 1.6 inches
Light source type
Beam distance of 656ft/200m
Intense Spotlight for long-range observation
Super bright high performance LED flashlight with high quality of 50,000 hours working life
Five switchable modes.
If you are looking for the best self-defense tactical flashlight, you can’t go wrong with the BINWO.
Best For Emergency: Gearlight High-powered LED Flashlight S2000
- Bigger on power but weigh less than the S1000 -> suit for multiple emergency occasions
- Can not only illuminate a large swath of outdoor area or a whole room but also be adjustable for versatile use
- Do not accept 26650 or 18650 batteries
It’s always a must for the family to have a tactical flashlight in their emergency prep kit. And this GearLight deserves to be a good try.
It comes with a virtually indestructible design as the previous sibling – S1000 – while highlighting leveraged illumination: double the luminous flux of the popular and 20 times brighter than old incandescent lights.
Combining with 5 lighting modes and the max beam distance of 1000 feet, this beast meets most kinds of versatility to functionally use on many occasions.
Though big on power, it keeps a modest handheld silhouette to not only be pocket-friendly but also easy to hold in one hand.
|Gearlight High-powered LED Flashlight S2000 Specifications|
7.68 x 1.77 x 1.77 in
Light source type
Delivers up to 1,200 real lumens
20 times brighter than old incandescent lights
Durable & water-resistant
Beam distance of 1,000ft, 5 settings replace the need for multiple flashlights
Built with durability, versatility, and extra brightness, the GearLight S2000 makes it best tactical flashlight for emergency usage.
Best For Cycling: WUBEN 1200 Lumens Led Flashlight
- Multiple power source options to flexibly use both indoors and outdoors
- As bright as car headlights with adjustments for added safety
- Can resist different weather conditions and work underwater
- Include one separate mode for emergency
- Short runtime
- Don’t have zoom capability
Made of hard anodizing aircraft-grade aluminum alloy that is light and good at abrasion resistance, this WUBEN flashlight is ultra-durable.
The best thing is it can work 2 meters underwater for 1 hour and can withstand the harshest weather conditions.
Besides, it offers 1200 lumens of light on its maximum which is considered as bright as some car headlights, making it an ideal option for off-road and commuting use. But if you are an urban rider, simply tone it down to your desired brightness.
A big bonus in this tactical flashlight is the variation of power sources.
You can either use the rechargeable 2600mAh 18650 Li-ion battery for money saving and eco-friendliness or two CR123A batteries during outdoor adventures. The Li-ion battery is included in the package in addition to a micro-USB cable.
|WUBEN 1200 Lumens Led Flashlight Specifications|
5.46in x 1.02in
Light source type
1.5 hours on high mode
143 hours on Eco mode
Super bright & portable
5 lighting modes & mode memory function
USB rechargeable & long-lasting
If you love riding trails at night, this WUBEN EDC flashlight is a small yet worthy investment to increase your visibility.
Best For Fishing: BYB 9 LED Mini Aluminum Flashlight
- Super low price while providing a pack of 4 mini LED flashlights -> budget-friendly
- Include a nylon lanyard for extra flexibility and convenience
- Easy to use and pocket-friendly size
- Overheating if working continuously
- A bit struggling when inserting the batteries
Purchasing flashlights in a pack of two or three to prep for an outdoor activity is always a good thing as you’ll have enough light if needed.
And these BYB mini LED flashlights are excellently made for that purpose!
It is built with 9 LED lights, giving 30 lumens of output. We considered that the amount of brightness is enough for fishing, bedtime reading, calamity search & rescue, and outdoor camping without blinding yourself.
What we like the most about is the additional nylon lanyard. With it, you can easily pull the flashlight from your emergency prep kit or hang anywhere when needed.
Out of many benefits and a pack of four, its price might shock you – just a mere $10, which is hard to beat.
|BYB 9 LED Mini Aluminum Flashlight Specifications|
3.2 x 0.9 x 0.9 inches
Light source type
Durable and Versatile
Can use for calamity search & rescue
While many anglers choose to give up on night fishing just because of lighting issues, the BYB will be your best assistant to get bigger awards.
Best For AR-15: Feyachi FL11-MB
- Provide ideal blinding brightness range to disorient the target efficiently
- Durable and shockproof to withstand abuse better
- Easy to attach and use
- Don’t have multiple lighting modes or strobe settings
We love the ideal blinding brightness of this Feyachi flashlight. In hunting, 1200 lumens are more than enough to make the target immobilized while giving you more time to make a move.
And it can work continuously for 4 hours, which is the best part.
The FL11-MB is very good at shockproof. Aside from the durable aircraft-grade aluminum alloy material, it’s added with a black anodized matte finish and waterproof O-rings so that you can freely use it on rainy days.
Our testers also praised for its ease to install, which mostly thanks to the QD cam lock. It helps to make the assembly faster with less effort, perfect for low-tech people.
|Feyachi FL11-MB Specifications|
Light source type
CREE XPL V6
1200 lumens of blinding white light
Produce tactical-level light for 4 hours
200 meters beam
Easy to install
2 Types of Switches
Among the tactical flashlights tested, the Feyachi FL11-MB stands out with its perfect blinding brightness and ease of use, making it the best choice for AR-15 guns.
Best For Hog Hunting: VASTFIRE CREE LED Green Flashlight
- Give fixed beam with green hunting light to optimally support your hog hunting trip
- Give wide beam distance and good runtime to enhance your visibility better at night
- Include everything needed in the package while keeping a good price -> Can be used right out of the box
- The case is made of quite cheap plastic material
- The battery chargers are not durable
Out of many green lights out there, the reason why we granted this as the best for hog hunting is because of its fixed beam. At one single mode, the flashlight delivers 1000 lumens that can expand your vision up to 150 yards.
The kit comes with everything you need for a hunt, including 2 packs of 18650 rechargeable batteries, 2 charging cables and 2 mounts.
It’s a portable unit that you can easily carry around and mount on your favorite rifle when in need. While keeping the whole device waterproof, its durable material is also slip-resistant for extra convenience.
|VASTFIRE CREE LED Green Flashlight Specifications|
7.5 x 1 x 2.2 inches
Light source type
Not focus but fixed beam
Single 1 mode 1000 lumens
Floodlight throw up at 150 yards
Made of durable aircraft-grade aluminum.
With 1000 lumens of illumination and full accessories provided, the VASTFIRE is an excellent package if you want a lot of light.
Highest Quality: Streamlight 88066
- Give 2 power source options and 2 operating methods
- Can stand the temperature range of -40º F to +120º F to work on versatile conditions
- RoHS compliant and meets applicable European Community Directives -> more reliable
- Don’t include batteries
If you’re ready to pay for quality, we recommend the Streamlight 88066.
Out of three options of weapon-mounted flashlights, it gives the most various lighting options.
Aside from the high mode (with maximum illumination of 1000 lumens) and the low mode, we really like the strobe. You can use it to disorient, immobilize the targets or send signals to your partners from distance.
Besides, the unit meets all kinds of versatility, from the operating methods to the power sources. The biggest bonus is you can use it in different weather conditions, within -40º F to +120º F.
As some technical information might give you more confidence to try it, this Streamlight is RoHS compliant and also meets applicable European Community Directives.
|Streamlight 88066 Specifications|
5.43 x 1.45 x 1.72 in
Light source type
High: 700 lumens
Medium: 300 lumens
High: 719 feet
Medium: 463 feet
High: 1 hour
Medium: 3 hours
1000 Lumen mountable flashlight
Multi battery versatility
Medium for bright light and longer run time
More quality designed than most, the Streamlight 88066 is versatile and functional that can be with you in any hunts.
How To Choose The Best Affordable Tactical Flashlights?
Purpose Of Use & Luminous Flux
- Let’s just start with what do you consider to be a “tactical flashlight”? Or, which purposes do you want to use it for?
- The reason why this feature is so important is it decides how much luminous flux of the flashlight that you need.
- For self-defense, it should be bright enough to make an aggressor momentarily blind during a potentially dangerous situation. The ideal luminous flux range, in this case, would be 1500L to 2500L.
- But if it’s just used for night outdoor activities, like fishing, hunting, and cycling, it doesn’t need to be that high. Somewhere between 30L to 1000L is just fine.
- When considering the best affordable tactical flashlight, don’t close your eyes off its downrange reach.
- The longer the beam distance, the more thing you can see.
- With nowadays given lighting technology, we highly recommend choosing tactical flashlights with at least 500 feet of beam distance, especially for emergency or riding.
- 90% of the flashlights in our list feature a beam distance of within 500 feet to a mere 1000 feet to make sure the user can see through more things and prepare themselves better. It’s especially helpful for an emergency, self-defense, and riding.
- However, in some particular cases, like nigh fishing, a low luminous flux with short beam distance is conversely a big bonus. For example, the BYB features just 30L of luminous flux and 20 feet beam distance.
Weight & Mountable
- While most people ignore this feature, it takes a big role in your convenience and even your safety.
- Tactical flashlights must be lightweight – under 1 pound – so that you can easily hold it in one hand while finding your items in the other. In some cases, it’s operating a handgun or other prepared self-defense weapons.
- For fishing, cycling, or hunting, a mountable tactical flashlight is the best bet.
Which Brands Make The Best Affordable Tactical Flashlights?
- GearLight is an American company with many years’ expertise in LED products so you can feel rest assured to pick it.
- WUBEN is a high-end flashlight brand that belongs to Shenzhen ShengQi Lighting Technology company, located in Dongguan city, China with over 30k square meters of area. It is one of the most professional lighting product manufacturers with over 30 years’ experience.
- Streamlight calls itself a “hands-on” company.as their product lines are created due to real-world experience and customer feedback. This is also a big brand founded in 1973
How many lumens is a good tactical flashlight?
Purpose of Use
Luminous Flux Range
100 - 200
25 - 200
For the AR-15
Are 1000 lumens good for a flashlight?
Compared to ordinary flashlights, a 1000-lumen unit is more durable. It is versatile for different uses and in many occasions. Plus, 1000 lumens of luminous flux results in longer downrange reach to help you see objects in a far distance.
How bright are 1000 lumens?
How many lumens do I need for daylight?
About the 8 best affordable tactical flashlights above, we consciously tried to pick them from different brands to get fairness with each manufacturer as well as a fair share of diversity. So we hope this top list has been helpful to you. Thanks for reading!