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Streamlight 2018: Smaller lights, Bigger Brights

Just a few years ago, most pistol-mounted lights were large, stuck past the barrel, required a bulky holster, and still weren’t ad bright as a decent handheld unit.

Streamlight had a reputation as a solid performer in the rechargeable duty light area, but had not been as well known in the weaponlight arena. This year, you’re going to see that change. Streamlight always introduces exciting new products at SHOT, but this year they’ve really come out swinging with over 15 new lighting products: we’re going to take a closer look at two standouts.

TLR-7 weaponlight by Streamlight
[TLR-7 weaponlight by Streamlight]

The first is the ultralight and compact TLR-7 weapon-mounted tactical light. The TLR-7 is a 500 lumen, super-compact weaponlight that has zero to apologize for, and will definitely not be dammed with that faint praise of “pretty good for the price.” This light packs an amazing amount of crisp white light in a size envelope that is both slim and short. It mounts to a broad range of both full-size and compact handguns. Like all the Streamlight TLR series lights, it features a one-handed, snap-on and tighten interface that keeps hands away from muzzles when attaching or detaching it.

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It is not a trick to find lights small enough to carry concealed, but this one actually has enough lumen-horsepower to make it worth doing so. A low-profile tapered snout of the light, and the lack of any extraneous paddles or bulky battery compartment saddlebags keep it from snagging during drawstroke and reholstering. An ambidextrous, multi-function switch is accessible without having giant “wings” to activate the light. A handy “safe off” feature locks the light to prevents accidental activation, saving batteries as well. Anyone that’s tossed a light in a case only to pull it out later — hot and dead — can appreciate this feature. It provides 1.5 hours of continuous runtime from just a single, commonly found CR123A lithium battery. The light is user-programmable for strobe or constant light output options. It is IPX7 rated (waterproof to 1 meter for 30 minutes). All that at a scant 2.4 ounces and 2.15 inches in length, this thing is bound to find a home on a lot of carry handguns this year.

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On the handheld side of the house, Streamlight has a new rechargeable that builds on their reputation there: The Streamlight PolyTac® X USB.  This is a 600 lumen tactical light system with MULTI-FUEL system that can use either Streamlight’s all-new 18650 battery with integrated micro-USB recharging port or CR123A lithium batteries. This recharging system gives you an economical, easy way to recharge by powering the 18650 battery from a laptop or a power outlet. But because these lights also can use CR123A cells, you can also fuel them up with disposable batteries to ensure you don’t run out of juice at an inopportune time.

USB rechargable Streamlight PolyTac is available in Black, Yellow, or Coyote.
[USB rechargable Streamlight PolyTac is available in Black, Yellow, or Coyote]

The torch has three programmable operating modes, letting the user choose whether they want options of low/medium/strobe thrown in the tailcap activation mix, or just a simple, high-only setting. The low output beam has an extended runtime of 36 hours at 35 lumens, vs. a 600 lumen high beam that claims a 3.5-hour runtime. (USB battery times shown: CR123A times will be a bit shorter.) The PolyTac X is IPX7 waterproof rated as well.

You can check out all their other new kit at Streamlight (Booth # 12562 at SHOT Show) or at Streamlight.com.


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