(Last Update: Sept 17, 2021)
Currently, the brightest flashlight in the world 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. Anyway, you can read more about this beast below and watch my video review of it if you want.
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|
|Medium||AceBeam X50||40,000 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 is the 60,000-lumen Acebeam X60
In my opinion, It’s just a matter of time before flashlights like this attract the attention of regulators.
I own the MS18. You can check my full review of it 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: AceBeam X50
ACEBEAM continues to lead the medium flashlight category with the introduction of the 40,000 lumen X50 in August 2021. Its closest competitor is the 34000 lumen Imalent MS08. The X50’s 8 Cree XHP 70.2 LEDs combine for a broad 120-degree flood while punching a beam out as far as 800 meters
Beyond being redonculously powerful, the Acebeam X50 makes some impressive strides forward in terms of quality and users experience. As far as I’m aware, the dedicated manual lock-out switch is a first in the industry and a big plus in terms of safety and ease of use.
The Acebeam X50 is submersible, tripod mountable, and ships with an accessory handle to keep your hand comfortable when operating it at max output. The USB-C PD(power delivery) port enables the built-in battery to be charged in 1.8 hrs while doubling as a mobile power bank to charge your devices if you want.
Overall the X50 is a major step forward in the medium category both in terms of output and function.
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(-10% off Code: WRG10) 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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