8 Best Affordable Tactical Flashlights of 2020

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 2020:

  • 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
Top 8 Best Affordable Tactical Flashlights
Best Overall
GearLight S1000
    Read Our Review
    Best For Self-defense
    LED Tactical Flashlight
      Read Our Review
      Best For Emergency
      Gearlight High-powered LED Flashlight S2000
        Read Our Review
        Best For Cycling
        WUBEN 1200 Lumens Led Flashlight
          Read Our Review
          Best For Fishing
          BYB 9 LED Mini Aluminum Flashlight
            Read Our Review
            Best For AR-15
            Feyachi FL11-MB
              Read Our Review
              Best For Hog Hunting
              VASTFIRE CREE LED Green Flashlight
                Read Our Review
                Highest Quality
                Streamlight 88066
                  Read Our Review

                  Handheld Tactical Flashlights

                  Best Overall: GearLight S1000

                  GearLight S1000
                  GearLight S1000
                  9Outstanding
                  Pros
                  • 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
                  Cons
                  • 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

                  Dimension

                  6.1 x 1.57 x 1.57 in

                  Weight

                  0.64 ounces

                  Light source type

                  LED

                  Luminous flux

                  1040 lumens

                  Beam distance

                  1000 feet

                  Running time

                  2 hours

                  Highlight features

                  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

                  Water-resistant

                  Verdict

                  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

                  LED Tactical Flashlight
                  LED Tactical Flashlight
                  9Outstanding
                  Pros
                  • 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
                  Cons
                  • 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

                  Dimension

                  6.1 x 1.6 x 1.6 inches

                  Weight

                  12 ounces

                  Light source type

                  LED

                  Luminous flux

                  2000 lumens

                  Beam distance

                  656 ft.

                  Running time

                  1 hour

                  Highlight features

                  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.

                  Verdict

                  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

                  Gearlight High-powered LED Flashlight S2000
                  Gearlight High-powered LED Flashlight S2000
                  9Outstanding
                  Pros
                  • 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
                  Cons
                  • 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

                  Dimension

                  7.68 x 1.77 x 1.77 in

                  Weight

                  11.2 ounces

                  Light source type

                  LED

                  Luminous flux

                  1200 lumens

                  Beam distance

                  1000 feet

                  Running time

                  4-5 hours

                  Highlight features

                  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

                  Verdict

                  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

                  WUBEN 1200 Lumens Led Flashlight
                  WUBEN 1200 Lumens Led Flashlight
                  9Outstanding
                  Pros
                  • 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
                  Cons
                  • 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

                  Dimension

                  5.46in x 1.02in

                  Weight

                  4.87 ounces

                  Light source type

                  LED

                  Luminous flux

                  1200 lumens

                  Beam distance

                  656 ft.

                  Running time

                  1.5 hours on high mode

                  143 hours on Eco mode

                  Highlight features

                  Super bright & portable

                  5 lighting modes & mode memory function

                  USB rechargeable & long-lasting

                  Verdict

                  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

                  BYB 9 LED Mini Aluminum Flashlight
                  BYB 9 LED Mini Aluminum Flashlight
                  9Outstanding
                  Pros
                  • 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
                  Cons
                  • 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

                  Dimension

                  3.2 x 0.9 x 0.9 inches

                  Weight

                  3.04 ounces

                  Light source type

                  LED

                  Luminous flux

                  30 lumens

                  Beam distance

                  20 feet

                  Running time

                  30 hours

                  Highlight features

                  Compact

                  Durable and Versatile

                  Aluminum body

                  Good illumination

                  No blinding

                  Run times

                  Can use for calamity search & rescue

                  Verdict

                  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.

                  Weapon-mounted Flashlights

                  Best For AR-15: Feyachi FL11-MB

                  Feyachi FL11-MB
                  Feyachi FL11-MB
                  9Outstanding
                  Pros
                  • Provide ideal blinding brightness range to disorient the target efficiently
                  • Durable and shockproof to withstand abuse better
                  • Easy to attach and use
                  Cons
                  • 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

                  Dimension

                  5.3"x1.3"x1.3"

                  Weight

                  4 ounces

                  Light source type

                  CREE XPL V6

                  Luminous flux

                  1200 lumens

                  Beam distance

                  656 feet

                  Running time

                  4 hours

                  Highlight features

                  1200 lumens of blinding white light

                  Produce tactical-level light for 4 hours

                  200 meters beam

                  Easy to install

                  2 Types of Switches

                  Verdict

                  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

                  VASTFIRE CREE LED Green Flashlight
                  VASTFIRE CREE LED Green Flashlight
                  9Outstanding
                  Pros
                  • 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
                  Cons
                  • 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

                  Dimension

                  7.5 x 1 x 2.2 inches

                  Weight

                  7.5 ounces

                  Light source type

                  LED

                  Luminous flux

                  1000 lumens

                  Beam distance

                  1050 feet

                  Running time

                  3.5 hours

                  Highlight features

                  Not focus but fixed beam

                  Single 1 mode 1000 lumens

                  Floodlight throw up at 150 yards

                  Made of durable aircraft-grade aluminum.

                  Verdict

                  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

                  Streamlight 88066
                  Streamlight 88066
                  9Outstanding
                  Pros
                  • 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
                  Cons
                  • 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

                  Dimension

                  5.43 x 1.45 x 1.72 in

                  Weight

                  6.88 ounces

                  Light source type

                  C4 LED

                  Luminous flux

                  High: 700 lumens

                  Medium: 300 lumens

                  Beam distance

                  High: 719 feet

                  Medium: 463 feet

                  Running time

                  High: 1 hour

                  Medium: 3 hours

                  Highlight features

                  1000 Lumen mountable flashlight

                  Multi battery versatility

                  Medium for bright light and longer run time

                  Verdict

                  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.

                  Downrange Reach

                  • 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

                  • GearLight is an American company with many years’ expertise in LED products so you can feel rest assured to pick it.

                  WUBEN

                  • 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

                  • 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

                  FAQs

                  How many lumens is a good tactical flashlight?

                  In reality, the luminous flux of a tactical flashlight is dependent on what you intend to use it for. The table below will give you a hint of the ideal number of lumens for specific usage:

                  Purpose of Use

                  Luminous Flux Range

                  (lumens)

                  Self-defense

                  >120

                  Emergency

                  >1100

                  Urban commuting

                  100 - 200

                  Mountain biking

                  >1000

                  Fishing

                  25 - 200

                  For the AR-15

                  >275

                  Hunting

                  >140

                  Are 1000 lumens good for a flashlight?

                  Yes, it is.

                  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?

                  To give you an idea of how bright they are. The brightness of one lumen is similar to one candle at 1 foot of distance. 1000 lumens can deliver 492 to 656 feet of beam distance.

                  How many lumens do I need for daylight?

                  In darkrooms, 1000 to 2500 lumens are enough for daylight. To simulate daylight better, you can combine with cooler temperatures of 5000K or higher.

                  Conclusion

                  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!

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