Best Shotgun Light – Reviews & Buyer’s Guide 2018
If you plan to shoot at night it can be quite a tricky task without a shotgun light. The best shotgun light not just provides you with temporary illumination but also saves you more trouble than necessary. Picking a single product is a hard job when you have a more of options to choose from them. That’s why we have made a list of Top 7 Best Shotgun Lights 2018 Buyer’s Guide. So you can have a look at the top 7 best shotguns lights and choose the best one which you want.
Imagine shooting an animal in the jungle at night, you will feel very confident about hitting your target but it can be a risky task if your surrounding is dark and you are not able to see other animals in the background. This could cause real danger and potential fatality. This can also be true if you are trying to protect yourself and your home at night. Hence, you require a shotgun light. Did you know that the best shotgun lights can offer a battery shelf lifespan of at least 10 years? There are a lot of shotgun lights out there; few are good when it comes to close shooting while few are good at the heavy shot. Among of the which one should you choose? Let’s find out!
Best Shotgun Light Reviews By Experts
#1 Streamlight TLR-1 HL Tactical Flashlight
The Streamlight TLR-1 tactical flashlight is a rail mounted flashlight that produces 630 lumens through its C4 LED light. The flashlight is made from 6000 series machined aircraft aluminum with an anodized finish and comes with a high-temperature shock mounted glass lens.
This light comes with a strobe function. The machined aluminum body is shock-resistant, and the flashlight will support both the powerful recoil of the shotgun and the usual wear and tear without any problems. One of the advantages of choosing this model is that it comes with an ambidextrous switch that will allow you to turn both the flashlight and the programmable strobe on or off.
What Do We Like About It:
- This flashlight is made by Streamlight, who has been around since 1973 and is a well-known brand for tactical flashlights. Streamlight is so confident of the quality of their products, that they warrant their products to be free of defects, including LED, for a lifetime of use.
- A lot of flashlights these days are made from plastic…and you can feel the difference in quality! However, this particular flashlight is made from 6000 series machined aircraft aluminum, which gives it the solid feel and it makes it tough enough to withstand some harsh conditions.
- The 630 lumens C4 LED light produces a really bright, solid beam of light, which is a key factor for tactical flashlights.
- This is a tactical flashlight that is specifically designed to be mounted on weapons. It is not a flashlight intended for everyday use or to be played with by the kids. If you want an everyday flashlight to keep in the drawer or car, this is probably not the flashlight for you.
- Compared to other brands, such as Surefire, this Streamlight feels much more solid with its all-metal construction.
- It produces a very bright beam and puts a lot of the other brands and models to shame with its intense light.
- With the easy one hand snap-on interface of this light, a lot of the users are more than happy with how easily this snaps on and off from their weapons, while still being solid when mounted on the gun.
#2 Surefire X300
If you are looking for a sturdy and dependable mounted light then read this SureFire X300 Review and find that it is an ideal choice. The SureFire X300 has been said to be virtually indestructible, which is something that most people are looking for with a weapon mounted light. After all, mounted weapon lights are going to see a lot more use than a light sitting around the home, plus they are exposed to various weather conditions. With a mounted weapon light you not only want something that will last, you also want something that is going to get the job done as efficiently as possible, which is exactly what the X300 offers you. The flashlight comes with a switch that’s located on its rear that can be activated easily with each hand. You can turn the unit on with a simple press of the button, and use the same button to turn it off.
What We Like About It:
- Attaches to both Picatinny and Universal accessory rails allowing it to be used on handguns and long guns alike.
- The Total Internal Reflection (TIR) lens gives you a smooth and tight beam, but also provides enough surrounding light in close quarters so as not to affect your peripheral vision.
- The LED is considered high performance but is a special off-white light that produces a light that is in the yellowish-green spectrum for optimal vision.
- Uses two CR123A batteries to produce 500 lumens. Batteries will last for 1.5 hours and come with the light.
- Features an ambidextrous switch that requires only a single finger to be used to power the light on or off, including momentary on.
- SureFire X300 Ultra is 100% weatherproof as it is O-ring and gasket sealed.
- Mounted light is made from Mil-Spec anodized aerospace grade aluminum to make it virtually indestructible.
#3 Streamlight Polytac Flashlight
The Streamlight PolyTac is a great multi-situational tactical flashlight that excels especially when mounted onto a firearm. It is a very bright flashlight with a good size that is just as effective handheld. The Streamlight PolyTac is great for home or general activities such as camping, hiking, hunting, walking, etc. This unit uses the C4 LED technology to produce a powerful light that can reach up to 275 lumens, and the concentrated beam can illuminate the objects in front of you, as well as those in the periphery. One of the advantages of using this model is that it’s very reliable. The Polymac flashlight uses the C4 LED technology that can run for up to 50,000 hours, and it has a parabolic reflector that will concentrate the light beam so it will illuminate a wide area in front of you.
What Do We Like About It:
- The Streamlight PolyTac operates on a half-push/tap and click function with the tail-switch; pretty standard. The half-push or tap is for momentary.
- When using the 88850 Streamlight’s high output mode, the flashlight has a maximum throw distance of 195 meters (m).
- The Streamlight PolyTac is powered by two CR123A lithium batteries that are included when purchased from Amazon. The PolyTac has solid-state power regulation for consistent max output throughout the runtime.
- The PolyTac 88850 is made entirely of a nylon polymer body. The polymer is pretty durable and shock resistant. It’s not as sturdy or robust as an all metal/aluminum body but it does well to resist recoil and continue running without any issues.
- The PolyTac is relatively compact and light with a weight of 4.1 oz, length of 5.22 inches and 1 inch diameter body.
- There’s no IPX rating but this Streamlight flashlight is O-ring sealed in both the tail and lens cap. The Streamlight PolyTac is waterproof to 1 meter for 30 minutes.
#4 UTG Defender Tactical Flashlight
This weapon-mount tactical flashlight has long-lasting Xenon bulb that is designed for longevity. The UTG Defender Series Weapon and Handheld Tactical Xenon Flashlight has an ultra-high light intensity at the 126-lumen output and combat tactical front head for self-protection and defense. It has a pushbutton for the momentary switch and a twist-on permanent switch as well as a remote pressure switch. It can also be mounted to weapons with Picatinny/ Weaver rails beside being easy-to-hold with its comfortable grip. Made of aluminum with a high-quality anodized finish and a combat tactical front head, the UTG weapon mount is made to last. It weighs just under 6 ounces and lengthwise is 6 inches which should make it more than suitable for most long barrel firearms. This particular model is a bit of a crossover providing the user the option of using it as a handheld tactical flashlight if necessary.
What Do We Like About It:
- It emits a concentrated beam that offers peripheral illumination, and it can be transferred and fitted to a variety of weapons.
- The flashlight’s light output is of 126 lumens, and the reflector will concentrate the light beam in front of you, illuminating everything in the center and the periphery of your view.
- A good thing about this model is that it uses a high-quality Xenon light bulb and a powerful reflector.
- This gun has three separate barrels, so it shoots three at once as long as there are lots bbs in the shell, but it won’t fire more than that.
- It also comes with a remote pressure switch and a power button that can keep the light on permanently or momentarily.
#5 Orion H40-W Tactical Flashlight
The Orion H40-W Shotgun Light is designed to give you great tactical illumination. It is designed with performance in mind, equipped with Cree XM-L U2 500 lumens LED. This is one of the best and brightest shotgun lights you can choose for your firearm. Not to mention that includes a weaver rail mount that can be installed on all rifles, giving you the versatility you need for any of your firearms. One of the attributes that make this shotgun light different is it’s compact design. It also offers solid water resistance and recoil-proof, durable design as well. All in all, this is a great, dependable light for any of your rifle firearms.
What Do We Like About It:
- One major advantage that it has over the average flashlights is the fact that it is waterproof. That is to mean that you can go diving with it without any interruptions.
- This model is easy to install, and it’s compatible with both Weaver and Picatinny rail mounts. Once you have it installed, you can truly appreciate the quality and durability of the flashlight.
- The smooth aluminum reflector will concentrate the light particles in a powerful beam that can illuminate objects that are placed up to 175 yards away.
- The flashlight uses 2 CR123A batteries for power, and a single set of batteries can offer up to 75 minutes of continuous use.
- You can make use of this for your hiking and camping experiences because it’s quite heavy and compact.
- Orion H40-W Tactical Lights is designed for peak performance in the harshest environments and is compact as well as a recoil-proof due to their virtually indestructible LED emitter.
#6 Helotex G2 Tactical Flashlight
This flashlight is the successor to the extremely popular G2 flashlight from Gun Shack! It has all the same features as the Gun Shack G2, but now has a dimmer low setting! The Helotex G2 has dual power capability to run either on a single AA or CR123 battery. The unit features a CREE XR-E Q4 LED for an incredible output of 130 Lumen. The flashlight features a tactile click on/off button on the rear of the flashlight. Once turned on, the user can toggle between high, low, and strobe functions with a quick tap of the on/off button. After turning the light off for 1 second, it will revert back to high the next time it is turned on, regardless what the previous mode was. The flashlight is constructed of anodized 6063-T6 Aircraft Aluminum and features o-ring seals on all parts for optimum weather resistance. It provides three lighting modes in a very small and compact design that can be easily carried wherever you go or placed in a bag or kit with minimal impact on weight or space. The Helotex G2 Tactical Flashlight is a nicely manufactured flashlight that is very user-friendly and can easily be carried around even by smaller hands. The tactile button designs also allow for making switching between lighting modes a breeze. Lastly, it accepts not only CR123 batteries but also AA batteries which are much more accessible and affordable, allowing users to keep the light on for much longer.
What We Like About It:
- This model can run on either an AA battery or a CR123 battery, but its power output will be different for each of them. If you power the flashlight with an AA battery, the unit will produce only 120 lumens. When you use the CR123 battery, the power output will rise to 130 lumens. The AA battery can provide enough power for the unit to run for up to one hour, and the CR123 can last for up to two hours.
- The G2 uses a Q4 LED as a light source, and it has three operating modes. You can either toggle the high or low illuminating modes, or you can engage the strobe feature.
- The unit comes with an ambidextrous tactile on/off button that’s placed on its rear, and it’s very easy to use.
- The tri-mode lighting feature is one of the coolest things about this tactical flashlight. You can go from low, high, and strobe at a flick of a switch. Luminosity can reach as high as 130 lumen, which is really bright given the size and weight of this thing.
- This particular Helotex model is made of tough materials that can withstand varying conditions. Its impact-resistant aircraft aluminum exterior makes it the best choice to go with tactical weapons. It also comes with o-ring seals, which is known to prevent leaks.
- Comes with a bezel, which is an added exterior protection. It gives structural integrity to the flashlight and protects it from accidental bumps and drops.
#7 EdisonBright Fenix Tactical Flashlight
Edison Bright is a reputable firm renowned for producing some of the top tactical flashlights over the years. This flashlight was introduced in 2013, and the reception was overwhelming. The PD35 TAC is an improvement over its old predecessor. It is a pocket-sized device, with comparisons making it one of the smallest among its peers. It is designed using the new LED lighting technique making very useful in illuminating dark places. One of the advantages of using this model is that it can use both a rechargeable battery or two CR123A batteries for power. Not only will the rechargeable battery lower your maintenance cost in the long run, but being able to use CR123A batteries in its place means you will be able to replace it quickly if it runs out when you’re in the field. This flashlight is produced using aircraft grade aluminum and Premium Type 3 metal making it resistant to corrosion and shock. The lens is made using reinforced clear glass that is coated using the anti-reflective material. The materials used to make this flashlight significantly increase its lifespan.
What Do We Like About It:
- The turbo mode puts out 1000 lumens of brilliant light. The high, mid and low settings give out 500, 200 and 60 lumens respectively. It also comes with an eco mode which gives out 8 lumens and can last for astonishing 140 hours on this mode.
- The versatility of the PD35 TAC is further increased by the high-quality diffuser that comes with it. The diffuser can transform the flashlight into a nifty little reading light or a camp light.
- The unit comes equipped with powerful EdisonBright CR123A lithium batteries. The ARE-C1 charger is very well built and efficient in charging the batteries fairly quickly.
- The PD35 TAC can easily be transformed from a tactical flashlight to a camp light in seconds with this accessory.
Buying Guide To Find A Proper Shotgun Flashlight
Finding the best shotgun flashlight can be difficult if you don’t know what to look for. There are a lot of models marketed as being the best, but many of them are not very efficient, despite their high prices. Here are a few things to keep in mind before buying a shotgun flashlight:
1. Light output:
The total light output is measured in lumens. The higher the number, the brighter the light.
2. Beam Distance and Focus:
Beam distance is typically measured in meters, while the intensity of the beam is expressed in candela. A longer distance and larger candela suggest a more focused beam.
3. Water resistance:
Most tactical lights are splash resistant. However, a rating of IPX-7 means a flashlight is waterproof for 30 minutes at a depth of 1 meter. An IPX-8 rating means the light is submersible for at least four hours to a specified depth greater than 1 meter.
4. Power source:
Many duty lights run on CR123A batteries, while others use rechargeable or alkaline batteries.
Smaller handheld lights frequently use tail cap switches. Larger lights can use switches mounted in the body, tail cap or in both locations. A few lights use a twisting motion to turn on.
The duty belt is already crowded with a lot of gear. The size and weight of a light can make a difference to your lower back. If the flashlight is too large or too heavy, it may be left in the car.
7. Modes Of Operation:
There is more to the flashlight than just how bright it is. An officer might want a duty light with a strobe mode, or the ability to reduce the total output for reading documents or navigation.
How long a flashlight will operate on a single set of batteries is just as important as how bright it is. The nights are long, and an officer needs a light that will work as long as possible.
The willingness of a company to stand behind its products can be an indication of how well the light is built in the first place. All manufacturers can have a lemon roll off the line, and an officer needs to be able to get it fixed should his or her purchase be that one.
10. Impact Resistance:
All flashlights will be dropped, and some will be subjected to heavy recoil when mounted to rifles or shotguns. An officer needs a flashlight that has been ruggedized for the harsh law enforcement environment.
11. Remote Operation:
When you’re installing the tactical flashlight on the front of your shotgun, it can sometimes be difficult to reach and turn it on directly. Luckily, some models like UTG Defender Tactical Flashlight come with a remote controller that will allow you to turn it off without having to take your sights off your target.
Even though they’re an essential tool for your hunting and home-defense shotguns, tactical flashlights can have a high maintenance cost because they drain batteries pretty quickly. Some manufacturers thought about this and created a push-to-use system that allows you to turn the flashlight on just when your finger presses the on/off button. This will allow you to use the low-light function to illuminate your path and push the button to illuminate farther objects when you deem it necessary.
Basic Characteristics Of Best Shotgun Light
You will struggle to find someone who will not have need for a flashlight at some point. Everyone from the military and emergency services to hunters, hikers or people who walk their dog. The point we are making is that everyone needs a flashlight, and it’s not until you actually need it that you realize you should have one around. Here are few basic things you need to know about shotgun flashlight:
1. Light Output
There are a number of ways you can look at light output. Most people will look primarily at Lumens. This is pretty standard and realistically should be one of your first thoughts. However, there are two other things you should consider. Temperature and Beam Distance. Temperature looks at the colour of light. For the scientific minds among you, you’ll recognise that light colour temperature is measured in degrees Kelvin. There are 3 general terms you should be aware of. ‘Warm White’ light is at the low end of the spectrum (2600-3500K) this gives off the yellowish light, like you find in an incandescent light bulb. Next you have ‘Neutral White’ light. This light is middle of the road, neither yellow or blue colours dominate. Finally you have ‘Cool White’ which is at the higher end of the spectrum (5000K+), this is mostly white light, with a bluish tint.
Lumens are how you measure the amount of light energy or power of the light in total that comes out of the face of the flashlight. High Lumens means that you have a powerful LED and a powerful battery. You’ll see the word Lumens used everywhere by brands and companies, but really it isn’t the be all and end all. Beam distance and even candelas are arguably more important. Even the quality of the reflector plays a part. Overall though it’s still a useful guide as more powerful Lumens does usually equate to a bigger light either ‘throw’ or ‘flood’.
For use outdoors you really want a flashlight that is over 150 lumens at a minimum. However, for tactical flashlight purposes, we recommend you look for 300+ lumens.
- 150 – 299 Lumens: With this level of light output you could easily light up a large room, your entire backyard and be able to see pretty far out of a campsite. Between 150 and 300 lumens, if you were to shine to light at someone you could disorientate them for a short period.
- 300 – 699 Lumens: Now we enter the tactical zone. To reach these levels your flashlight with need the higher specification Lithium or Li-Ion batteries. With this level of lighting, you can light a very big area with relative ease.
- 700+ Lumens: This is for those who want serious illumination. This is the level of power you want if you need maximum brightness for your job but still need a flashlight you can carry by hand. People who are into bushcraft, military, search, and rescue or part of the emergency services are the main people that tend to buy these.
2. Light Mode
Tactical flashlights offer multiple light modes. Even though this might not seem important at a first glance, each light mode offers some kind of benefit:
- SOS: SOS is used for emergency purposes. It is originally a naval term for save our ship. This would be useful for anybody that was out camping or stuck in a survival situation.
- Turbo Mode: Using this feature will produce the maximum amount of lumens the flashlight is capable of. This light mode will illuminate objects placed far off, and it will reveal your targets. However, most of the times, this light mode will produce a very powerful light beam, so it might not be comfortable to use when you’re walking because it might blind you or your partners. Using this mode will also drain your flashlight’s batteries at an accelerated rate.
- Beacon Mode: A beacon is like a lighthouse, it blinks at full brightness every few seconds. The purpose of this mode is for survival. You would use this when you want to get seen. Blinking every few seconds conserves battery life as long as possible, but still makes you really recognizable.
- Strobe Mode: The strobe mode turns the light on or off in a particular rhythm, and it can be used either as a signal for your partners or as an instrument to blind and disorient any potential attackers. This light mode usually produces the maximum amount of lumens the flashlight is capable of, so it will drain the battery at an accelerated rate.
The materials used in the making of the flashlight has a direct impact on its durability.
- Plastics or Composites: You won’t see many of these types of flashlights at all, but they are available. However, if you are looking for a high-quality flashlight you are better looking at one of the other materials below.
- Anodized Aluminium: This is the material that you’ll find in most modern flashlights today. You want to make sure that you have at least type II anodizing as that is the standard, but you can also get type III which is even harder.
- Titanium: Titanium is very strong like stainless steel and but much lighter. It’s a very good material, but if you want a flashlight made of titanium, you need to be willing to pay for it.
- Stainless Steel: Stainless steel is a very strong and durable material but it is heavy.
4. Ease Of Use
- Rechargeable Batteries: Some models, like the EdisonBright Fenix, use rechargeable batteries for power. Thanks to the rechargeable batteries, these units have a lower maintenance cost.
- Multiple Power Sources: Even though using a rechargeable is an advantage, this feature can quickly become a disadvantage if your batteries run out while you’re out on the field. Without a power source, the tactical flashlight becomes useless, no matter how good it is. That’s why some models can use multiple power sources. When the rechargeable batteries run out, you can simply change them with normal ones and keep hunting or trekking.
5. Tactical Rings
A tactical ring is a nice addition to any flashlight for two reasons: Firstly is you were to lay your flashlight on a wonky on uneven surface, the ring would prevent it rolling away (pretty useful). The second use is for hand position. The ring positioning will prevent your hand slipping off the flashlight, which if you are using it in wet conditions if very helpful.
We’ve just given you a whole lot of knowledge. These devices come at reasonable prices, and they can provide multiple advantages. Using these flashlights in a home-invasion situation will allow you to tell friend from foe, and it will increase your shooting accuracy and precision. Too much retain at once most likely, but if there is one thing you should take away from this is that buying the best shotgun light is definitely worth your money.