(Last Update: August 21, 2022)
The brightest flashlight in the world for 2022 is the 100,000-lumen Imalent MS18 which I own and extensively reviewed here. Basically, it’s an epic hand-held stadium light that can throw a beam down-range 1.3km. The second brightest flashlight in the world is the significantly less expensive ACEBEAM X75 which cranks out 80,000 lumens.
World’s Brightest Flashlights by Category
Welcome to my regularly updated list of the brightest flashlights in the world. I do my best to stay on top of the latest flashlight technology and cross-reference lumen claims with reliable sources.
The average set of headlights on a car produce no more than 3000 lumens. By comparison, even the smallest flashlight on this list produces 4000 lumens!
|Category||Name||Max Output (in lumens)|
|Large||Imalent MS18||100,000 L|
|Acebeam X75||80,000 L|
|Medium||Imalent MS12 Mini||65,000 L|
|Tactical||Nitecore TM9K||9500 L|
|EDC||Imalent MS03||13,000 L|
|Mini||Imalent LD70||4000 L|
|Headlamp||Lupine Betty RX14(Amazon)||5000 Lm|
Brightest Large Flashlight: Imalent MS18
It is no overstatement to say that the Imalent MS18 rivals police helicopter searchlights. The Imalent MS18 is a revolutionary flashlight in its own right. It produces an epic 100,000 lumens and cools itself via a built-in vapor-cooled, forced-air radiator. Its closest competitor was the 80,000-lumen Acebeam X75.
In my opinion, It’s just a matter of time before flashlights like these attract the attention of regulators.
I own the MS18. You can check out my full review here.
4 years ago, the most powerful flashlight on the market could only produce 10,000 lumens!(source.) Needless to say, LED technology has grown by leaps and bounds.
As you might expect, the MS18 is on the expensive side (check the latest price at Imalent). However, on a lumens-per-dollar basis, it is actually one of the cheapest flashlights on the market.
- 100,000 lumens turbo output
- Forced-air cooling
- IP56 weather resistant..but not truly “water proof”
- 18 high-quality CREE XHP 70.2 LEDs
- Range 1350 meters(.85 miles)
The MS18 can produce its turbo burst of 100,000 lumens for a minute or so before stepping down to 25000 lumens for around an hour. That is still extremely impressive and better than any other current production flashlight.
Brightest Medium Flashlight: Imalent MS12 Min
The MS12 Mini can deploy a 45-second turbo burst up to 65,000 lumens before throttling back for a sustained 13,000 lumens for 45 minutes.
13,000 lumens is roughly equivalent to 4 sets of care headlights on high beam! Impressive.
The MS12 Mini ships with 4 high-drain lithium 21700 batteries included. On paper this flashlight can throw a beam downrange about 1km. However, as a rule of thumb, for useful range I count about half of whatever the a flashlight’s spec sheets says(so 500 meters).
To get this hand-held light canon the MS12 Mini will set you back aroud $400. Get the latest price here.
Brightest Tactical Flashlight: Nitecore TM9K
At 9500 lumens, the Nitecore TM9K just delivered a 2020 beat-down to 2019’s champions- the Wuben T70(4200 lumens), and the AceBeam L30 Gen 2(4000 lumens). Yup, 2020 has started with a bang for tactical flashlights.
In true tactical form, the Nitecore TM9K is waterproof to 2 meters is operated by two dual tail buttons. One is for is for cycling modes and the other for on/off and momentary on. The flashlight is also capable of producing a dizzying full 9500 lumen strobe to completely disorient bad guys.
I think this flashlight is actually quite a good deal considering what it is capable of.
- Max Runtime: 60 hrs
- Turbo output: 9500 lumens
- Power Settings: Strobe(9500 lm), High(1900 lm), Mid (460 lm) Low(130 lm), Ultra-low(30 lm)
- Beam Throw: 268m (293yds)
- Battery: 5000mAh High-drain 21700
- LED: 9x CREE XP-L HD V6 LEDs
- USB C fast charging
- Beam Throw Distance: 250 meters
- Waterproof: IP68 – 2m submersible
- Length: 4.92
- Weight: 218 g / 7.68 oz
- Body: Anodized Aircraft Grade aluminum
- Holster included
Brightest EDC Flashlight: Imalent MS03
Imalent just released the MS-03 which cranks out 13,000 lumens and reaches out to 324 meters.
Here’s my complete review of the MS03.
The Imalent MS03 is able to crank out this massive amount of light by utilizing a high-drain 21700 battery driving three 2nd-generation American CREE XHP70 LEDs.
Of course heat becomes an issue so the turbo lumen burst is only available for 45 seconds before stepping down to a sustained 2000 lumens.
here are the published specs:
Brightest Mini Flashlight: Imalent LD70
I don’t know how it is possible to flog 4000 lumens from a flashlight as small as the Imalent LD70. It’s pure witchcraft!
Here’s my full review of this little beast
The LD70 (4000 lumens) absolutely dwarves the AceBeam TK 16’s 1800 lumens. The tough aluminum housing is waterproof down to two meters and the small size makes it a great pocket flashlight.
The LD70 employs a 2nd-gen CREE XHP-70 LED driven by a high-drain 21700 lithium rechargeable battery. Here are the published specs:
A cool little OLED display lets you keep track of the mode and battery life remaining. A handy magnetic USB charger makes it super easy to keep this little monster fed.
Brightest Headlamp: Lupine Betty RX14
While not a flashlight per-say, I’ve included headlamps on the list of world’s brightest flashlights. No other headlamp on earth cranks out this many lumens as the Lupine Betty RX14 (5000 lumens).
Betty is truly insanely priced. She’s big, bad and ugly. That doesn’t matter because whoever wears this thing is the king of the world! Or maybe there just making up for something.
The nearest competitor is the 4000 lumen Acebeam H30 which, mercifully, you can get for a fraction(1/8th!) of Betty’s price. However, big Betty’s strength is that she can sustain her brightness much longer than the Acebeam.
Betty is German engineered and features a wireless bluetooth wrist band to control the headlamp without touching it. I presume it’s because you’d melt your fingers if you actually touched the light.
This thing requires so much juice that you’ll be umbilically connected to a rather large lithium ion battery pack. So bring a rucksack along for that. Oh yeah, do your friends a favour and don’t look at them when you speak to them or you’ll burn their corneas out.
Below is a comparison video demonstrating big Betty’s capabilities. (Credit: johndotdoedotee)
I big shout out to flashlight forums and communities around the internet who have been immensely helpful in informing me of the latest flashlights that are pushing the envelope of what is possible.
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