Turn Night into Day, the SureFire Way

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SureFire flashlights are among the best in the world, but they’re not for everyone. One reason is that they’re relatively expensive for flashlights. That’s because they’re built to last, in the United States, and they’re backed by a lifetime warranty. Even though most of them are small in size, SureFire flashlights are much brighter than other, larger models. By the way, B&H is one of the Top 10 U.S. dealers for SureFire flashlights.

Bright and reliable, SureFire flashlights are a must for anyone who can't afford to have a flashlight fail in the field. SureFire flashlights are the number-one choice for those in military, law enforcement and rescue services. If you’re a Navy SEAL crawling out of the ocean to infiltrate a terrorist operation, you want a flashlight that can instantly turn night into day and temporarily blind and disable the enemy. If you’re a police officer chasing a criminal through a dark alley you’ll want the same advantage. If you’re trapped in a smoke-filled burning building, you’ll want the firemen rescuing you to have flashlights that won’t fail no matter how treacherous the conditions get. Even if you’re a working photographer trying to see the gear in the bottom of your bag in a dimly lit wedding hall, a SureFire flashlight will surely come in handy. 

One reason SureFire flashlights are so reliable is that most of them use 123A lithium-ion batteries, which provide 3 volts apiece, with a shelf life of 10 years. Not only do the 123A batteries retain a charge for 10 years, they also won’t leak and corrode the inside of the flashlight, rendering it useless when you pull it out of a glove box or closet. 

It’s true that the gear used by military, law enforcement and rescue personnel is funded by vast taxpayer-backed resources. But even if your resources are only half-vast you still might want to invest in a SureFire flashlight. Some of them aren’t that expensive. Better yet, perhaps you can convince friends or family members to buy one for you. It will be the last flashlight you’ll ever need. Most importantly, it will work when you need it to, whether you’re fixing a flat tire on a rainy night, signaling a passing boat when yours has run out of gas, or looking for the breaker panel in a dark basement. 

SureFire’s roots are based in laser sights and lights for firearms. Ideally, any light intended to be mounted on firearms should be small in size, lightweight, bright and rugged, and SureFire flashlights retain those characteristics to this day. Most of the SureFire flashlights, and most good flashlights made today, use Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) instead of incandescent lamps. LEDs are far more efficient than incandescent lamps; they waste very little energy producing heat, instead converting most of the energy into usable light. They therefore provide more run time from each set of batteries. LEDs also have no filament that can break or burn out, so they’re very rugged and they last for thousands of hours without burning out. Modern LEDs can be incredibly bright. 

Let’s take a close look at SureFire’s lineup, ranging from dimmest to brightest. We’ll start off with one that’s so dim you can’t even see the light; more specifically, human eyes just can’t see the light that it produces.

M1 Infrared Illuminator

The M1 Infrared Illuminator is technically a flashlight, but the 10 mW of infrared (IR) light that it produces can’t be seen by the naked eye. That’s why we’re calling it the “dimmest” flashlight in the SureFire lineup. The device uses a rugged LED to produce a beam of invisible infrared light for use with night vision equipment. Night vision equipment can see the infrared light given off by anything that’s warm including people, animals and machinery and it can also depict scenes illuminated by external IR light sources such as the M1 Illuminator. 

The M1 Illuminator is crafted from aerospace-grade aluminum with a Mil-Spec Type III hard-anodized coating. Like all SureFire flashlights, the M1 is weatherproof, sealed with an O-ring, and its Lexan window is virtually unbreakable. To turn it on, you can press and release the tail-cap switch for momentary on-off action, or twist the switch to keep the flashlight turned on until you twist the switch off. A switch lockout mechanism prevents the flashlight from accidentally turning on during transport or storage. Small and lightweight, the M1 Illuminator is powered by a single 123A lithium battery.

HL1 Helmet Light

The HL1 Helmet Light, as its name implies, is a flashlight designed to attach to helmets, and it’s typically used in military applications. The HL1 is made of durable glass-filled nylon polymer and neoprene, and it’s O-ring sealed and watertight. An included mount lets you attach the HL1 to any Modular Integrated Communications Helmet (MICH), and it can be rotated 360 degrees once attached. The helmet light fits in the palm of your hand and weighs only 3.1 ounces. A battery is included. 

There are four versions of the HL1, and each version can be had in different colors. All versions of the HL1 are controlled by two toggle switches and a pressure switch. 

The HL1-A features three white primary LEDs, two blue secondary LEDs and one blinking infrared LED that serves as a personal IFF, or Identify Friend or Foe beacon—it basically tells the guys on your team not to shoot at you. The white and blue LEDs can operate at three brightness levels, while the IFF beacon works at only one brightness level. The white primary LEDs are used for general-purpose illumination, producing 19.2 lumens for 6 hours, 5 lumens for 28 hours, or 1.4 lumens for 48 hours, all from a single 123A battery. The blue secondary LEDs output a low-signature, night-vision-friendly 2.5 lumens for 20 hours, 0.8 lumens for 48 hours or 0.3 lumens for 96 hours. The IFF beacon consumes 1.72 mW for the 120 hours; it will operate from a single battery. The HL1-A is available in black or tan, and the tan model can be had in a kit that includes a Z71 carry clip, which allows easy attachment to any MOLLE or ALICE vest (these are special vests with rows of nylon webbing used mostly by the military to secure various pieces of gear). 

The HL1-B Helmet Light features three white LEDs, two infrared LEDs, and a blinking infrared IFF beacon. The white LEDs and the IFF beacon are functionally the same as the HL1-A, while the infrared LEDs can provide illumination for night vision devices while maintaining a light signature that’s invisible to the naked eye. Like the HL1-A’s blue LEDs, the HL1-B’s IR LEDs can output 2.5 lumens for 20 hours, 0.8 lumens for 48 hours or 0.3 lumens for 96 hours. The HL1-B is available in tan, as well as in a kit that includes a Z71 carry clip. 

More similar to the HL1-A than the HL1-B, the HL1-C Helmet Light features three white primary LEDs, two red secondary LEDs, and a blinking infrared IFF beacon. Basically just offering the option of red secondary LEDs instead of blue, the HL1-C’s functionality, run time and brightness specifications are the same as the HL1-A. Like the HL1-A and HL1-B, the HL1-C is available by itself in tan or in a kit that includes a Z71 carry clip. 

The HL1-D Helmet Light features three yellow-green primary LEDs, two infrared secondary LEDs and a blinking infrared IFF beacon. Here the yellow-green LEDs are used for general-purpose illumination and, of course, the infrared LEDs are for use with night vision devices. Like the other models, the HL1-D is available in tan by itself or in a kit that includes a Z71 carry clip.

E1L Outdoorsman

The E1L Outdoorsman is a small dual-output LED flashlight. Its light weight and built-in pocket clip make it an ideal light to clip on the brim of your favorite cap for hands-free operation. Even though it’s powered by a single 123A battery, the E1L’s precision Total Internal Reflection (TIR) lens and high-efficiency LED enable this light to generate a high beam of 45 lumens, or a low beam of 3 lumens. The low beam will run for up to 48 hours on a fresh battery, and it’s ideal for reading a map or navigating a dark campsite, or even for rummaging through your sock drawer without disturbing a sleeping spouse. The light is controlled by a dual-output tail-cap switch; you press it for momentary-on low or click for constant-on low, release or click again to turn it off, then press or click again to select high. Like most SureFire flashlights, the E1L features a hard-anodized aerospace aluminum body, and like all SureFire flashlights, the E1L features weatherproof O-ring and gasket seals.

E1B Backup

While most SureFire flashlights are small enough to be kept in a pocket, backpack, or glove compartment, the diminutive E1B Backup dual-output LED flashlight is ideal for use as a spare. Of course, depending on the situation, the E1B also makes a fine primary flashlight. It’s useful for professionals in military and law enforcement as well as everyday civilian use. This tiny flashlight, powered by a single 123A lithium battery, can output 110 lumens, with a tactical run time of 1.3 hours. That’s four times the light output of a big two-D-cell flashlight—bright enough to temporarily blind an aggressor, thus giving you the upper hand. It can also output a 5-lumen low beam for up to 37 hours, which is plenty bright enough to read a map, check an ID, or navigate a dark trail. You press or click the tail-cap switch once for high-beam action, again for off and again for the low beam. A smooth body makes it comfortable to keep this light in your pocket without it digging into your leg, and the two-way clip permits the light to be carried in a pocket bezel up or down, or clipped to the brim of a cap and used as a headlamp. The E1B Backup is available in black or silver.

E2L Outdoorsman

Similar to the E1L Outdoorsman, the E2L Outdoorsman uses two 123A batteries instead of one, which allows it to run brighter and run longer. The compact, dual-output flashlight offers a maximum brightness of 60 lumens, with a tactical run time—the time it takes to drop below 50 lumens—of 6 hours. The E2L can also output 3 lumens for up to 100 hours. If you were using this flashlight in the great outdoors, far from home, you would obviously want to use the low setting as much as possible to conserve battery power. Any emergency situation, or any situation where safety is concerned, such as navigating a dark, treacherous trail, would warrant the use of the high setting regardless of the hit on battery life. A dual output tail-cap switch is pressed once for momentary low, clicked for constant low, released or clicked again to turn it off, and then pressed or clicked again for high. The E2L Outdoorsman features a hard-anodized aluminum body, a steel pocket clip and weatherproof O-ring and gasket seals.

E2L AA Outdoorsman

While the lithium 123A batteries are superior to AA batteries as far as shelf life and weight are concerned, they are more expensive than AAs and they can be harder to find, especially in remote locations. If you want the advantages of a SureFire LED flashlight, but prefer to use standard AA batteries, either lithium or alkaline, the E2L AA Outdoorsman is exactly what you need. The E2L AA Outdoorsman is a dual-output LED flashlight that’s longer and heavier than the regular E2L, but also brighter, with a longer run time. The E2L AA Outdoorsman can output a high beam of 80 lumens, with a tactical run time of 9 hours, and it will output 3 lumens for 60 hours. A dual output tail-cap switch is pressed for momentary low or clicked for constant low, released or clicked again to turn it off, then pressed or clicked again to select high. With this light you can be prepared for outdoor activities, emergencies and everyday needs with batteries that you can buy anywhere.

E2D LED Defender

The E2D LED Defender is a dual-output LED flashlight typically used by law enforcement and the military. It’s also really cool looking. Its high-level output of 200 lumens is diminished by a tactical run time of 1.9 hours. But it also has a low-level output of only 5 lumens, which won’t easily give away your location during a police raid or jungle assault, and also provides 76 hours of light. All of the lights we’ve looked at, especially ones as bright as this, can easily blind an aggressor, temporarily ruining his night vision. But the Defender goes one step further, with its viciously crenellated Strike Bezel and scalloped tail cap that can provide further defensive options should the need arise. But be warned: if you’re skilled at hand-to-hand combat, the Defender can only help. If you don’t know how to fight you probably shouldn’t try to protect yourself with a flashlight of any kind—unless it’s a light saber.

EB1 Backup

Like the E1B Backup, the EB1 Backup is a tiny flashlight, only 4 inches long, with a weight of just 8 ounces and powered by a single 123A battery. But, thanks in part to a slightly thicker bezel that provides more efficient cooling of the LED, the EB1’s high beam is nearly twice as bright as the E1B. The EB1 Backup has a high beam of 200 lumens with a tactical run time of 1.3 hours. It also has a low beam of 5 lumens that will shine for 37 hours. A two way carry clip offers multiple carrying options. The tail-cap switch is pressed for momentary high or clicked for constant high, released or clicked again for off, and pressed or clicked again for low. This flashlight’s small size and high brightness make it ideal for everyday use, as well as keeping it in your briefcase or glove box. The EB1 Backup is available in black or silver.

EB1 Backup Tactical

The EB1 Backup Tactical offers the same features and specifications as the EB1 Backup except it has a different switch. The EB1 Backup Tactical, naturally, has a tactically advantageous switch that is pushed for momentary light or twisted for constant light. That, plus a high beam of 200 lumens and a low beam of 5 lumens, makes this one useful flashlight. Though it is little, the EB1 Backup Tactical is fierce. The EB1 Backup Tactical is also available in black or silver.

Kroma MilSpec

The Kroma MilSpec is somewhat unique. It’s a dual output multi-spectrum flashlight that provides two beam types and four spectrum choices. Powered by two 123A batteries, the Kroma MilSpec’s primary white LED can generate a 50-lumen high beam for 1.5 hours, or a 3.4-lumen low beam for 20 hours. Note that the 1.5-hour run time for the high beam is referred to as the tactical run time; the high beam doesn’t simply turn off after 1.5 hours, but its brightness will drop below 50 lumens after that amount of time. 

The Kroma also features secondary LEDs in red, blue, yellow-green and infrared. The red, blue, and yellow-green LEDs let you preserve your own night vision with low-output flood beams. The red LEDs let you find your way in the dark without disturbing wildlife, as many animals can’t see red light, and the IR LEDs can provide invisible illumination for night vision devices. The secondary LEDs will run for 8 hours on the high setting and 80 hours on the low setting. A 2-stage tail-cap switch is pressed once for momentary low, pressed again for momentary high and twisted for constant-on at either brightness level. A heavy-duty stainless steel pocket clip offers multiple ways to carry the light.

G2 Nitrolon Incandescent

Sometimes it’s preferable for a flashlight to have an incandescent bulb instead of an LED. For example, sometimes the color temperature of LED light is such that it doesn’t reveal enough detail in whatever you’re illuminating. So, if extended run time isn’t an issue, you might prefer an incandescent SureFire over an LED model—or perhaps you might like one of each. The incandescent models are also less expensive than their LED counterparts, so going incandescent can be a low-cost entry point to SureFire ownership. Another way to save a few bucks on a SureFire flashlight is to get one made of Nitrolon instead of aluminum, and that’s what the G2 Nitrolon Incandescent is made of. Nitrolon is a rugged, corrosion-proof polymer material that is much lighter than aluminum. The very affordable G2 Nitrolon outputs 65 lumens, with a tactical run time of one hour from a fresh pair of 123A lithium batteries. With the installation of an optional P61 lamp, the illumination jumps from 65 to 120 lumens, but the tactical run time drops to 20 minutes. A pushbutton switch on the tail cap of the flashlight can be pressed for momentary illumination or twisted for constant illumination. The G2 Nitrolon is available in black or yellow.

G2X Pro

If you’re looking for a bright flashlight that’s lightweight, rugged, practical and affordable, then look no further than the SureFire G2X Pro. Basically a low-cost version of the 6PX Pro, the G2X Pro features an aluminum bezel and a tough Nitrolon polymer body that resists scratches, abrasion and corrosion. Like all SureFires, the G2X Pro features O-ring and gasket-sealed weatherproofing and it’s powered by, and includes, a pair of 123A batteries with 10-year shelf life. With no filament to burn out, the high-efficiency LED is virtually immune to failure and the polycarbonate micro-textured reflector sculpts a wider beam with generous peripheral light. The G2X Pro also offers two light output levels: a blinding 200-lumen high beam and a power-saving 15-lumen low beam. The high beam has a tactical run time of 2 hours while the low beam is good for 45 hours of working light. This awesome flashlight costs only about half as much as many other 200-lumen SureFires. The G2X Pro is available in black, yellow, green and tan.

G2X Tactical

If you like what the G2X Pro has to offer but would prefer a tactical push-twist switch over the standard push-click type, then check out the SureFire G2X Tactical flashlight. Of course, this tactical version with its tactical switch has only a single output of 200 lumens with a tactical run time of 2 hours. It is otherwise the same as the GX2 Pro, and is basically just a lower-cost version of the 6PX Tactical. The G2X Tactical is available in black, yellow, green and tan, all with a Nitrolon body and body-color aluminum bezel. The flashlight is also available in fire rescue yellow with a black aluminum bezel. Also catering to fire and rescue workers is the G2X Fire Rescue Helmet Mount Kit, which includes the G2X flashlight in yellow and black along with an aluminum SureFire FFM01 helmet mount that will attach the flashlight to the brim of most firefighter and rescue helmets, using two set screws.

G2ZX CombatLight

Another variation on the G2X flashlight is the G2ZX CombatLight. The G2ZX CombatLight has the same Nitrolon body and aluminum bezel, along with the same 200-lumen high beam and two-hour tactical run time. What’s unique about the G2ZX is its CombatGrip design with a reduced-diameter mid-section and rubber grip ring. This is an ideal shape for various flashlight/handgun techniques and also gives the holder a secure grip even with wet, cold or gloved hands.

G2D Fire Rescue

The G2D Fire Rescue is a triple-output LED flashlight designed for use by firefighters, paramedics and their ilk. Its body made of tough, corrosion-proof Nitrolon polymer and the bezel and tail-cap switch are made of hard-anodized aluminum. The fluorescent yellow body and reflective body stickers make it easier to find the flashlight in dark or smoky conditions. The triple-output flashlight has a high beam of 115 lumens with a tactical run time (until the output drops below 50 lumens) of 2 hours. There’s also a medium output of 60 lumens which will give you 7 hours of light and a low output of 15 lumens which will give you 32 hours of light. This lets you conserve run time when conditions will allow it, and also to crank up the brightness when conditions demand that you do so. 

Powered by two 123A lithium batteries, the G2D is 6.1 inches long and it weighs just 5.3 ounces, so rescue workers can carry a very bright light that doesn’t weigh them down any more than is absolutely necessary; after all, firemen are already loaded down with lots of heavy protective gear. To turn the light on, you press (for momentary) or click (for constant) the tail-cap switch once for a 15-lumen output, again to turn it off, again for a 60-lumen output, again for off and once more for a 115-lumen high beam. The G2D is MIL-STD-810 rated, so it’s safe to use in most explosive atmospheres.

G3D-FYL Fire Rescue

The G3D-FYL Fire Rescue is basically identical to the G2D except that it holds three 123A batteries instead of two, thereby gaining an inch and a half in length and 1.3 ounces in weight. The extra battery does not make the light brighter; instead the run times are longer. The G3D’s high beam of 115 lumens has a tactical run time of 3 hours, the 60-lumen output runs for 10 hours, and the 15-lumen output runs for 38 hours. Otherwise, the G3D is made of the same materials, has the same switch, and is just as visible and just as rugged as the G2D.

6P Original

If you’re an old-school type of person, you might like SureFire’s 6P Original. The 6P Original pays homage to the first SureFire flashlight ever made. The 6P is an incandescent flashlight with an anodized aluminum body and precision micro-textured reflector. Output is 65 lumens with the included bulb or 120 lumens with the optional P61 lamp. Use of the P61 lamp will drop the tactical run time (the time when the output drops below 50 lumens) from one hour to 20 minutes. The 6P’s tactical tail-cap switch is pressed for momentary-on or twisted for constant-on. Like all SureFire flashlights, the 6P features weatherproof O-ring and gasket seals.

6PX Defender

If you were going to be involved in hand-to-hand combat you would probably be better off even with just a big stick for use as a weapon over a flashlight, especially if the flashlight isn’t packing multiple D cells. However, if you’re trying to subdue someone at night, a 200-lumen flashlight could temporarily blind your opponent, thus giving you the upper hand. Once your foe is compromised you could then use a small flashlight as a weapon, especially if it’s a SureFire 6PX Defender. The 6PX Defender features SureFire’s crenellated Strike Bezel, which is a fancy way of saying that the business end of the flashlight is ringed with a crown of notched edges, and it could do some serious physical harm if wielded properly. The notched edges also allow the light to be stood on end and used as a sort of lamp. The 6PX Defender is a single-output LED flashlight with a brightness of 200-lumens and a tactical run time of 2 hours. You press the tail-cap switch for momentary on or click it for constant on and then release or click again to turn it off.

6PX Pro

If having a more practical flashlight is more important to you than having a more deadly one, then you might prefer the 6PX Pro over the 6PX Defender. The two flashlights are nearly identical but the 6PX Pro doesn’t have the crenellated Strike Bezel. Instead it features dual outputs, with a high beam of 200 lumens and a tactical run time of 2 hours and a low beam of 15 lumens that will shine for more than 45 hours. You press the tail-cap switch for momentary low, click it for constant low, release or click again for off and press or click on again within two seconds for high.

6PX Tactical

If you prefer the single-output action of the 6PX Defender over the dual-output of the 6PX Pro, but don’t need a crenellated Strike Bezel and would prefer a switch that you press for momentary and twist for constant, then the 6PX Tactical is the light for you. It’s a single-output LED flashlight with a 200-lumen output and tactical run time of 2 hours. You press the tail-cap switch for momentary-on or twist it for constant-on.

Maximus

Now that we’re at the 500-lumen level of brightness, imagine how great it would be if you could have a headlamp that emits 500 lumens, something that would light up your entire field of view, turning night into day wherever you look. Well you don’t have to imagine such a device, because SureFire already makes one, and you can buy it from B&H. The SureFire Maximus is a variable-output headlamp powered by a rechargeable lithium-ion battery. Made of lightweight magnesium, the Maximus weighs only 5.1 ounces, so it’s comfortable to wear. A dial on the side of the lamp lets you adjust the light output anywhere from 1 to 500 lumens, and you can aim the lamp up or down by 90 degrees to align it with your field of view. 

You’ll get only 1 hour of light on high before the output drops below 50 lumens, but at 1 lumen the light will shine for more than 70 hours. You can set the output much lower than maximum for most tasks, as having 500 lumens project from your forehead is way too much light for any kind of close-up work. But the maximum output will surely be appreciated if you’re exploring a cave or trying to find your way out of the wilderness at night. And if you can’t find your way out, a built-in SOS beacon might just lead the rescuers right to you. And don’t worry about rain or dropping the light in water, as the Maximus is waterproof to a depth of one meter. The headlamp includes chargers for both AC wall outlets and 12-volt DC vehicle outlets, and a “fuel gauge” on the headlamp shows you the battery status at a glance.

Minimus

The Minimus headlamp is basically the same as the Minimus AA, except that it uses a single 123A Lithium battery instead of two AAs, making it nearly half the weight of the AA model. Like the Minimus AA, the Minimus has a high output of 100 lumens, with a tactical run time of an hour and a half, and a low output of 1 lumen with roughly 50 hours of run time. The Minimus also features a built-in SOS beacon. The output is controlled by a knurled control knob, which also has a setting to turn on the SOS beacon. The light housing can be rotated up and down 90 degrees to align with whatever you’re doing. The Minimus is also submersible to three feet for thirty minutes. A red filter is included for times when a low light signature is desired or when you want to preserve your dark-adapted vision for safety reasons.

Minimus Tactical

While the basic Minimus headlamp is ideal for general use by mountain climbers, hunters, campers, spelunkers and so on, those in the military might prefer the Minimus Tactical headlamp. Basically the same as the other Minimus headlamps, the Minimus Tactical uses a single 123A Lithium battery and it has a high output of 100 lumens, with a tactical run time of an hour and a half, and a low output of 1 lumen with roughly 50 hours of run time. It also features the built-in SOS beacon, and the output level is controlled by a knurled knob which also turns on the built-in SOS beacon. The light housing can be rotated up and down 90 degrees to align with whatever you’re doing. Like its more civilian compeers, the Minimus Tactical is submersible to three feet for thirty minutes. What’s different with the Minimus Tactical is that it’s finished in a desert tan with a camouflage headband, and it includes red, blue and green filters to give you a variety of low-signature light sources that preserve your dark-adapted vision.

Minimus Vision

Sometimes the best flashlight you can have is one you don’t have to hold. While many a SureFire can clip onto the brim of a cap, only a headlamp is designed to mount on your head, leaving both hands free to do other things. For example, if you’re cooking outdoors at night, spelunking, or assembling or repairing something, a headlamp is the best way to light your surroundings. The light from a headlamp, once aligned with your field of vision, will light up whatever you’re looking at, while leaving both hands free. 

SureFire’s Minimus Vision is a variable-output LED headlamp powered by a single 123A battery. It features a special high-efficiency LED that outputs a warm incandescent-like light that can penetrate dust and fog, with a smooth wide beam that’s optimized for your field of view. Its output is adjustable from 1 to 75 lumens by way of a dial that controls brightness. Its tactical run time is 1.5 hours, but you’ll get about 50 hours of run time at 1 lumen. The light assembly rotates up and down 90 degrees so you can aim the light exactly where it’s needed, and a red filter is included for situations where a low light signature is desirable. A built-in SOS beacon can run for days on a single battery. Made of hard-anodized aluminum and a tough polymer, the headlamp weighs only 3.3 ounces.

Minimus AA

Like other SureFire lights that use AA batteries, the Minimus AA variable-output LED headlamp uses a pair of readily available AA batteries (alkaline or lithium) instead of the 123A lithium cells, which can be hard to find. It was developed for use by wilderness firefighters, who need rugged, reliable, bright light sources powered by commonly available batteries. The headlamp is made of a strong polymer and hard-anodized aluminum. A refractive optic produces a wide beam that’s optimized for a natural field of view, with enough peripheral light to illuminate your surroundings. 

The Minimus AA has a high output of 100 lumens, with an hour and a half of run time before the output drops below 50 lumens. Set to its lowest output of 1 lumen, the Minimus AA will provide about 50 hours of run time. The headlamp also features a built-in SOS beacon, which can run for days on a fresh pair of batteries. The output is controlled by a knurled control knob, which also has a setting to turn on the SOS beacon. The light housing can be rotated up and down 90 degrees to align the light beam with whatever you’re doing. A pair of AA lithium batteries and a cloth storage bag are included.

T1A Titan

Only 3.25 inches long with a weight of just 2 ounces, the T1A Titan is an ultra compact single-output LED flashlight with an impressive 100-lumen output from a single 123A lithium battery. Perfect light for any situation, a twist of the bezel provides a variable output from zero to 100 lumens, and the nearly infinite range of lower output settings gives you the light you need while also conserving battery power and preserving your night vision in strategic situations. Housing just a single battery, the T1A Titan is small enough to put on your keychain or wear around your neck using the included adjustable lanyard. Of course it’s also small enough to keep in your pocket for handy access. The high setting gives you a tactical run time of 1 hour, at which point the output drops to below 50 lumens. The lowest setting of 1 lumen gives you workable light for up to 60 hours. Like all of SureFire’s non-incandescent flashlights, the Titan T1A features a nearly indestructible power-regulated LED emitter, and a precision micro-textured reflector produces a smooth, optimized beam of bright white light. A hard-anodized high-strength aluminum body provides extreme durability.

A2 LED Aviator

The A2 LED Aviator is a dual-output flashlight that produces both a high-intensity white-light spot beam and a low-intensity flood beam in red. It’s powered by two 123A batteries. The spot beam of 120 lumens offers a tactical run time of 2 hours, at which point the beam drops below 50 lumens. The red flood beam of 10 lumens can be sustained for 15 hours, and it’s a sufficient amount of light for general close-up work at night or when you need to keep your location hidden from view and preserve your night vision. A tactically correct two stage pushbutton tail-cap switch is pressed for a momentary 10-lumen red flood beam and pressed further for a momentary 120-lumen white spot beam. You can also twist the switch for a constant red low beam and twist further for a constant white high beam. The light is constructed from hard-anodized aerospace aluminum with a two-way steel clip that lets you carry the light in multiple ways.

V2 Vampire

They say vampires come out at night, and that’s certainly true regarding SureFire’s V2 Vampire dual-output flashlight. But, like “real” vampires, you might never see the V2 coming unless you’re equipped with night-vision gear. The V2 Vampire is a dual-output LED flashlight that can output white light or infrared light, depending on your situation. In white-light mode the V2 can output a high beam of 150 lumens with a tactical run time of 1.8 hours or a low beam of 10 lumens that will shine for up to 6 hours. The two stage tactical tail-cap switch is pressed for momentary light or twisted for constant output. The white-light mode will light the way for you, but also reveal your location to any concerned individuals, be they friend or foe. But pushing and twisting a locking selector ring switches the V2 to infrared mode in which the tail-cap switch lets you select either a 120-milliwatt high beam that runs for 8 hours or a 10-milliwatt low beam that will shine for many hours. The infrared light cannot be seen by anyone lacking night-vision gear. Hypothetically, law-enforcement officers wearing night-vision goggles could use the V2 in IR mode to sneak up on fugitives holed up in the woods, and then temporarily blind and disorient them with a quick flash of the white-light high beam. Thugs dispatched, case closed.

Z2-S LED CombatLight

If you’re involved in hand-to-hand combat, need to be rescued or are just looking for a tripped breaker in a dark basement, the Z2-S LED CombatLight could come in handy. The Z2-S is a high-intensity single-output LED flashlight with a built-in strobe that can be put to use in tactical or emergency situations. To begin with, the Z2-S is a bright, 160-lumen flashlight that can light your way to safety or temporarily blind an aggressor. An ergonomic CombatGrip provides a secure hold for cold, wet or gloved hands and also makes it difficult for an aggressor to take the light from you. A pair of 123A lithium batteries provides a tactical run time of 2 hours. A built-in strobe can be used in two ways: if you’re lost, or awaiting rescue, the strobe can pinpoint your location for rescue workers or if you lose track of a team member in dark, unfamiliar territory, activating the strobe light can lead them back to you. The tactical tail-cap switch is pressed once for momentary-on, pressed again to turn it off, or pressed three times rapidly to turn on the strobe; you can twist the switch for constant-on in either mode.

Z2X CombatLight

Yet one more variation on the G2X, or more specifically a variation on the G2ZX, is the Z2X CombatLight. The Z2X has the same feature set and specifications as the G2ZX, except that it’s a bit heavier. The Z2X is heavier because it features all-aluminum construction, including the bezel and the body, which on the G2X is Nitrolon. The choice is entirely up to you. Tactical switching lets you press the tail-cap switch for momentary-on or twist it for constant-on.

LX2 LumaMax

The LX2 LumaMax is a dual-output LED flashlight with a low-level output of 15 lumens and a high-level output of 200 lumens, with a tactical run time of 2 hours. Remember that the tactical run time is simply the approximate time at which the light dims to below 50 lumens, and the flashlight will still emit plenty of light long after 2 hours is up. But you might want to stick with the low beam once it dims noticeably. The 15 lumen low-level output is bright enough to handle any task where you could use a regular flashlight, and you’ll get up to 47 hours of light in this mode. A two stage pushbutton tail-cap switch is pressed lightly for a momentary-on 15-lumen output and pressed a bit farther for a momentary-on 200-lumen output. You can also twist the switch for a constant low beam and twist it a bit more for a constant high beam. A two-way pocket clip lets you carry the light facing up or down, or even on the brim of your favorite cap.

P2X Fury

The P2X Fury outputs a high beam of 500 lumens, all from a flashlight that’s only 5.4 inches long and powered by two 123A batteries. Now we’re cooking! 500 lumens is a serious level of brightness which, needless to say, can temporarily blind an aggressor or even a friend if you point this thing in his direction. The Fury is basically a pocket-sized searchlight. With such high brightness, the Fury has a tactical run time of just 1.5 hours, but the flashlight’s low beam of 15 lumens will shine for 46 hours before the batteries need replacing. The Fury has a click type tail-cap switch that you press for momentary low or click for constant low, press or click again to turn off, and press or click on again within two seconds for high. If you’re going to be out in the wilderness, and if there’s even a chance that you could become stranded, a light this bright is definitely worth the measly 5.7 ounces that it will add to the load you’re carrying.

UBR Invictus

The UBR Invictus is a variable-output LED flashlight with a maximum output of 800 lumens and an ergonomic CombatGrip body. But unlike the 500-lumen Fury, the 9-inch UBR Invictus will not fit in your pocket. Even so, it’s amazing that a handheld flashlight can emit so much light. Set to its brightest output, a fully charged battery will provide a tactical run time of 1.5 hours, while turning down the output to its lowest setting of 2 lumens will give you 100 hours of light. The UBR Invictus is controlled by a pushbutton switch and a selector ring with eleven different settings: there are eight levels of brightness from 2 to 800 lumens, a strobe, an SOS beacon and a designated Off setting. A light press of the switch gives you momentary light at the level determined by the selector ring, while SureFire’s MaxBlast feature lets you press the tail-cap switch all the way for full brightness at any time, regardless of the output setting. 

The UBR Invictus is powered by an included rechargeable lithium-ion battery, but it can also be powered by a pair of 123A lithium batteries. A “fuel gauge” indicates when it’s time to recharge, insert a new battery or select a lower output level. Chargers for both AC wall outlets and 12-volt DC vehicle outlets are included.

UB3T Invictus

The UB3T Invictus is a slight variation on the UBR Invictus. Instead of being powered by a rechargeable battery, the UB3T is powered by three 123A cells. It has the same 800-lumen high output, but the three 123A cells extend the tactical runtime to 1.7 hours, while decreasing the 2-lumen output to 84 hours. Also, at 9.1 inches in length, the UB3T is 0.1 inch longer than the UBR; even so, the UB3T weighs just a bit less than the UBR. Aside from these minor differences, the UB3T offers the same eleven output settings (eight levels of light from 2 to 800 lumens, a strobe, an SOS beacon, and an Off position), the same CombatGrip body design, the MaxBlast tailcap switch, and the “fuel gauge” that tells you when you need new batteries or need to lower the brightness. Of course both Invictus flashlights are made of hard anodized high-strength aluminum with O-ring and gasket sealed weatherproofing.

UDR Dominator

Similar to the Invictus models, the UDR Dominator is a variable-output LED flashlight with a multifunction switch and selector ring that provide 11 output settings. It even has a “fuel gauge” and comes with a rechargeable lithium-ion battery, like the UBR Invictus. But that’s where the similarities end, because where the Invicti top out at 800 lumens, the UDR Dominator goes all the way on up to an astonishing 2,000 lumens. The selector ring lets you set the output from 10 to 2,000 lumens, and there’s a strobe function as well for emergencies. The UDR Dominator is ideal for law enforcement, military, border security, search-and-rescue operations and any other applications where you need to turn off the dark.

M3LT CombatLight

The M3LT CombatLight is more or less a variation on the Invictus lights—a military version, if you will. Those in the military and law enforcement can’t afford to fumble with complicated controls in life-or-death situations. For that reason the ML3T does away with the fancy multi-function switch and multiple output settings. Instead it has just two settings: an 800-lumen high beam and a 70-lumen low beam. The high beam has a tactical run time of 1.7 hours and the low beam will shine for 9.5 hours. A simple push twist tail-cap switch always activates the high beam when fully depressed; lightly pressing it activates the low beam. You can twist the switch for constant on at either level. The M3LT also does away with the rechargeable battery contained in the UBR Invictus, going instead with three 123A batteries like the UB3T Invictus. After all, you don’t want to mess with battery chargers in life-and-death situations. Of course, it also becomes ever more important to keep plenty of spare batteries on hand. The ML3T is available with a strobe or without a strobe. The strobe is activated by pressing the tail-cap switch rapidly three times.

M6LT Guardian

When you just need a very bright, very reliable flashlight, say as a searchlight for rescue workers or to lead a large group through dark woods, and don’t need any fancy features or variable output, the M6LT Guardian is just the ticket. The M6LT Guardian is a single-output LED flashlight with an amazingly bright 900-lumen output. Powered by six 123A batteries in an easy-load battery magazine, the M6LT will give you 3.2 hours of light before the output drops below 50 lumens. Housing six batteries, the M6LT is not very small like most other SureFire flashlights, but it will fit in a coat pocket. It’s about the same size as a common double D cell flashlight, but lighter at just over one pound and it outputs far more light than any D-cell flashlight ever could. Deep grooves in the aluminum body provide a secure grip even with cold, wet or gloved hands. You press the tail-cap switch for momentary light or twist it for constant light. A switch lockout prevents the flashlight from turning on during transport or storage.

HellFighter

To wrap things up, let’s look at the most awesome flashlight SureFire makes: the HellFighter. It’s not even accurate to call the HellFighter a flashlight; it’s really a search light and/or weapon light. The HellFighter outputs an insane 3,000 lumens, which is bright enough to illuminate targets hundreds of yards away. The lights, batteries, and other accessories are expensive, but military applications always demand the very best. 

The HellFighter is not an LED light, but it can nonetheless withstand intense recoil shock and vibration. It houses a High-Intensity Discharge (HID) lamp which, like an LED, has no filament to break or burn out. A HID lamp creates intense light by producing an electric arc between two tungsten electrodes sealed in a transparent tube, usually made of fused quartz. 

There are two versions of the HellFighter: the original HF1 and a newer HF4; both have a maximum output of 3,000 lumens and both can be powered by disposable 12-volt BA-5590 military batteries or the power outlets of vehicles with 12- and 24-volt power systems using the proper adapters. As for major differences, the newer model HF4 HellFighter features an integral rechargeable battery that can power the light for 30 minutes, allowing it to be used as a handheld searchlight. The HF4 also lets you choose a 3,000-lumen high beam, a 1,000-lumen low beam, or a strobe mode that flashes nine times per second. The HellFighter and various accessories are available individually or in kits.

In Summary

Most people could never afford a SureFire HellFighter; most people would never need one, either. But everyone needs a flashlight from time to time. And anyone can afford something like the G2X Pro and then be the proud owner of a rugged, waterproof, 200-lumen SureFire LED flashlight. If you rarely use a flashlight, it’s even more important that you have one that uses batteries with a long shelf life, such as the 10-year shelf life of the 123A lithium-ion batteries. And if you don’t want to rely on the availability of the 123A batteries, something like the E2L AA Outdoorsman eliminates that worry. Need something super-bright and affordable? Then check out the P2X Fury. Prefer incandescent light over LED? Then the G2 Nitrolon Incandescent is the light for you. The point is that there’s a SureFire flashlight that’s right for everyone, no matter who you are or what you do. You might even want two or three of them. 

Speaking of batteries, the 123A-type lithium batteries do cost a bit more than regular batteries. B&H sells 2-packs of SureFire SF123A batteries, 6-packs of them, and countless other brands and packages as well, including ones that are rechargeable. There’s even a box of 38,400 of them for less than $60,000. But unless you’re buying them for an entire platoon, you should probably just go with a 6-pack.

Items discussed in article

4 Comments

G2X PRO Will this light work with an 18650 battery.

After attending the 2015 Shot Show and seeing all the new items that Surefire has to offer, I was hoping to see some of them relfected on this outstanding light review of their products. This is by far the best breakdown of Surefire lights and their capabilities Ive yet to read , and will surely (no pun) help me make a decision on which one to purchase. However, I was hoping to read some reviews and details about lights such as the A1 Lawman and its newer updated model the A2, the Dominator, the awesome hands free 2211 and 2211 / Luminox Wrist Light / Watch combo, and even the tiniest little Titan series too. For anyone interested in seeing all these 2015 models this is a YouTube video of the rep going thru them all.  Once again, AWESOME review of these products B&H , thank you!!!                              

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9pPoYh1Nfo0

Hello, B&H, please update some of the specs for these lights, i.e. the G2X Pro now outputs 320 lumens, the E1B is discontinued, etc.

G2X owner from B&H

Along with the lights for the hard hats I also purchased a, helmet cooling system. In my opinion. This was a nice addition.

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