torch

3 Best LED Torches that are Light & Bright! (2021 Review)

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The best LED torch should have long battery life and a far-reaching light beam.

You’ll also want to consider the weight, light modes and water proofing. 

Having a reliable LED torch is important both for home and further afield.

I’ve researched and tested the best models; here’s what I recommend…

What is the Best LED Torch?

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Comparing The Best LED Torches

Use the dropdown to sort the table by the feature that's most important to you.

  • Best For
  • Lumens
  • Max. Light Beam Distance
  • Battery Life
  • Weight
  • Modes
  • Material
  • Waterproof
  • Cost
  • Our score
  •  

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In-Depth Reviews of Our Recommended LED Torches

Ledlenser Professional LED TorchLedlenser Professional LED Torch

Best LED torch overall

Brightness
Durability
Battery Life
Value for Money
Overall
4.5
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Ledlenser Professional LED Torch Review

Specifications

  • Lumens: 50 - 450 lm
  • Max. Light Beam Distance: 420m
  • Battery Life: 30 - 300 hours
  • Weight: 775g
  • Modes: 3
  • Material: Aluminium
  • Waterproof: Water resistant

If you’d appreciate the option of a hands-free torch, with no compromise on brightness or distance, you might like the Ledlenser Professional LED Torch. It has a belt clip for hands-free use and a belt pouch, so you always know where to find it.

Usually, you’d have to get a less bright head torch to be hands free, but this one from Ledlenser clips right onto your belt, with all the quality of a modern, handheld LED torch.

Although this product is the priciest on my list, it’s definitely the best LED torch in terms of quality, performance and versatility.

It’s a large torch made from tough, aircraft-grade aluminium. Its matt finish provides extra grip, and its sleek design looks very professional.

The Ledlenser is water resistant, so it’s protected from splashing water but not from submersion. This is helpful in the UK as we’re often surprised by a bout of rainfall!

This torch features an extra-large power button that’s easy to use even when wearing gloves. It has three modes which must be ‘clicked’ through: boost, high power and low power.

The torch comes supplied with 3 x D Duracell batteries, which is rare amongst even the best LED torches on the market.

The beam is 450 lumens, so on paper it’s not as powerful as the Maglite torch. However, this model incorporates an Advanced Focus System and Smart Light Technology to generate a homogenous bright white light beam that can reach up to 420m.

As with most of the best LED torches out there, you can change the Ledlenser’s light focus from a spot to a flood beam.

Ledlenser torches also have replaceable parts. So, when a part fails, you do not have to replace the whole unit. This is definitely a sign of quality, as it has been built to last. You can also get 7 years warranty if you register your product. These aspects really set this torch apart from the others featured on this list, as they indicate a good customer care ethic.

This LED torch also comes attractively boxed, so it would make a fantastic gift.

This heavy torch might be too hefty for some people to take on the go.

Pros

  • Well made, with a solid quality build
  • Offers hands-free access
  • Easy to use with gloves on so a great option for winter
  • The batteries come included

Cons

  • The belt clip grips tightly to the torch and may scratch it
  • Need to flick through the modes by turning the torch on and off again
  • Not fully waterproof
  • The torch is fairly heavy so some users may struggle taking it on the go
BUY HERE →

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Maglite ML300L LED TorchMaglite ML300L LED Torch

Best budget option

Brightness
Durability
Battery Life
Value for Money
Overall
4.425
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Maglite ML300L LED Torch Review

Specifications

  • Lumens: 58 - 625 lm
  • Max. Light Beam Distance: 406m
  • Battery Life: 16 - 117 hours
  • Weight: 750g
  • Modes: 5
  • Material: Aluminium
  • Waterproof: Water resistant

If you’ve spent days camping in a remote area of the countryside, or you take your dog out on nightly forest walks, you’ll know how dark the wilderness can get.

Lots of torches can assist you in these moments, but the brightest and best LED torch for me is the Maglite ML300L LED Torch.

It has all of Maglite’s well-known reliability and durability, plus the efficiency of LED technology. At full power it produces a brightness similar to that of a car’s headlights – it’s really quite astounding.

The torch produces 625 lumens and has five modes: momentary, full power, low power, eco and strobe. You can adjust the settings by repeatedly clicking the power button. This multiple clicking mechanism could prove cumbersome in a high stress scenario. So, I’d recommend getting to grips with how it works before taking it out.

The beam is also adjustable from spot to flood with a simple twist of the head.

In eco mode, the batteries will last for up to a whopping 117 hours and still produce 58 lumens. In full power, which is really bright, it runs for almost 16 hours on one set of Duracell batteries.

The torch requires 3 x D batteries which aren’t included.

In terms of construction, it’s solid and well built. Perfect for camping trips, night walks, and any other night-time missions that call for a durable LED torch. It’s also classically stylish with a black aluminium body and a textured band for extra grip.

Its round shape does give a slight risk of damage, if it’s left on a smooth surface, as it could roll onto the floor and scuff or break.

It’s so powerful that it could dazzle other people’s eyes if shone directly into them, so be mindful of that when you’re passing cyclists or other midnight walkers!

Pros

  • Users are impressed by how bright this torch is, with many reporting that it's brighter than their car headlights
  • Adjusts from spot to flood focus with a twist of the torch's head
  • Very sturdy and robust build makes it great for outdoor activities
  • Long lasting battery - especially when used on eco-mode

Cons

  • There is just a single button requiring multiple clicks to access each power setting
  • Batteries don’t come included
  • Some people found it hard to find the button to turn it on in the dark
  • Easily rolls off surfaces which could cause damage
BUY HERE →

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ThorFire S70S Super Bright TorchThorFire S70S Super Bright Torch

Best for brightness

Brightness
Durability
Battery Life
Value for Money
Overall
4.625
CHECK PRICE →

ThorFire S70S Super Bright Torch Review

Specifications

  • Lumens: 1 - 3960 lm
  • Max. Light Beam Distance: 680m
  • Battery Life: 55 mins - 480 hours
  • Weight: 590g
  • Modes: 6
  • Material: Aluminium
  • Waterproof: Waterproof

Those of you who have bought lots of torches in your life will know that durability and waterproofing can be vital to a torch’s longevity. Whether you’re a regular moonlit dog walker, or a camping and hiking fanatic, my next LED torch could tick all your boxes.

The ThorFire S70S Super Bright Torch is fully waterproof and highly powerful. You won’t have to worry about using it in heavy rainfall or submerging it in up to 2m of water.

It’s a large and weighty torch with a hard-anodized aluminium casing, making it a very serious and durable model.

With an outstanding output of 3960 lumens, its power is impressive and has the highest lumen value on my list. It will run for approximately 72 hours on low power and just under 4 on its highest power.

It has 6 modes: low, mid, high, turbo, strobe and moonlight. The different modes will not only change the brightness of the beam, but also how long the battery will last for.

The low power mode still offers a decent amount of light, so if you’re camping or doing a similar outdoor activity you should be able to use it on low power and not worry about the battery dying during the trip.

Light modes can be changed by a simple press of the power button. Also, very handily, the torch’s ‘memory’ will remember the last setting you used, remaining on that setting when you switch it back on.

It requires 2 x 18650 batteries, or 2 x button-top 26650 batteries, which are not included.

This torch is highly powerful so you should be careful when you’re walking your dog, not to dazzle other dog walkers, drivers or cyclists.

It’s important to know that this torch gets hot when it’s on full beam, so you might want to wear gloves or only use full beam when you absolutely must.

Its black casing looks quite stylish and comes with a handy carrying strap, which can be slung over your shoulder or carried.

This torch is lightweight and therefore very portable.

Bear in mind that leaving it on standby mode may drain battery if you do so for long periods.

Pros

  • Fully waterproof so you don't have to worry about rainfall or submersion
  • Users were impressed by its brightness and power - perfect for dog walks in the dark
  • Lightweight and portable at just under 600g

Cons

  • Batteries not included and must be purchased separately
  • Some users have reported this torch getting very hot if switched to full beam for too long
  • Leaving it in standby between uses may drain the battery quicker than expected
BUY HERE →

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Things to Know Before Buying an LED Torch

A reliable, durable torch is an essential tool, whether it’s kept at home in the case of a power cut or kept on hand for nightly dog walks. A bright LED torch can bring a big sense of security for some people, so it’s worth getting one you can trust.

The best LED torches tend to be brighter than traditional torches. Plus, as they’re more energy efficient, they’re a more popular choice. LED torches are available in a range of sizes and offer lots of features that might suit you.

So, if you’re considering purchasing an LED torch but you’re not sure what to look out for, here are some things to consider:

Torch Brightness and Lumens

A torch’s brightness is usually measured in lumens, and LED torches tend to be very bright. In general, the higher the lumens, the brighter the torch and the longer its range.

That said, some torches use specially developed technology, such as the Ledlenser Professional LED Torch. This model only produces 450 lumens yet incorporates ‘Smart Light Technology’ so its beam can reach up to 420m.

As you can see, lumens can be a helpful indicator of a torch’s potential, but they may not tell the whole story. It also depends what filters and technologies are involved. Therefore, don’t feel pressured to spend lots of money on a torch with a high lumen count, as reviews on other products might indicate cheaper models that are just as effective.

For everyday use, such as camping or searching for things in the shed, 450 lumens should suffice. Higher lumen torches are helpful if you live rurally, and some of my recommendations can produce up to 4000 lumens!

Some torches come with blinking, strobe and SOS modes which are handy for attracting attention in an emergency.

The higher the lumens and power output of the torch, the quicker the battery will drain. This will be an important factor depending on your intended usage – torches for long hikes will be different to torches for home use.

Batteries and Battery Life

Torches either come with built-in rechargeable batteries, removable rechargeable batteries or disposable batteries.

Torches with built-in batteries are very handy. Often these torches can be charged with a micro-USB, so they can even be charged in your car! These torches remove the necessity to rely on having spare batteries around, but the downside is they require charging. Plus, you may need to replace the entire torch if the battery fails.

Torches that use disposable batteries are generally the cheapest to buy, and the output is relatively even, up to when the batteries run out of juice. They usually have a good run time (although there’s always the risk someone will remove the batteries to use for another device!).

Buying disposable batteries can be expensive, and they are not the most environmentally friendly choice because they release chemicals when they’re disposed.

Rechargeable torches could prove cost-effective in the long run, when you think of all the batteries you’d need to buy otherwise.

Some torches have an eco-mode which will prolong battery life. When manufacturers advertise the battery-life-potential of their torches, the figures shown usually refer to the torch being used on its eco or lowest-power setting. Regardless, it’s a good reference to have.

The Importance of Durability and Weatherproofing

If you’re going to use your torch on camping or hiking trips, durability and weather resistance are key. Even for nightly dog walkers, sometimes you’ll be caught out in the rain, and you’ll need your torch to be resilient.

Remember that ‘water resistant’ and ‘waterproof’ mean different things:

A water-resistant torch can withstand splashes and a short amount of time in light rain.

A fully waterproof torch can withstand being submerged in between 1 and 2m of water. It can be used in heavier downpours. If you’re camping outside in the UK summer (a season not known for its reliably dry weather…) you might benefit from having a waterproof torch. These do come with a higher price tag though.

The torch’s IP rating will indicate how waterproof it is – it’s worth running the IP rating through Google before purchasing a torch, to check exactly what type of weatherproofing you’ll be getting.

Here’s a guide to IP ratings:

IP ratings often have two numbers after the ‘IP’ – the first number indicates the product’s protection from solids and the second from liquids. Here I’m just going to show you liquids, as this is most relevant to LED torches. Here are the most used IP ratings and what they mean…

0 – Not protected

1 – Protected from dripping water

4 – Protected from splashing water

5 – Protected from water jets

7 – Protected from immersion of up to 1m

8 – Protected from immersion beyond 1m

Your torch should also be able to withstand the odd knock and bump. The more durable models will have an aluminium body.

Finding the Best Size and Weight for You

LED torches are available in a range of sizes and weights.

If you’re going to be carrying your torch in a backpack, the best LED torch for you might be a lightweight model. Some models even come with belt clips which can be great for camping and hiking, as they’ll attach to your belt to be used hands-free. This should eliminate any worries about your torch being cumbersome to carry.

If you’re keeping your torch at home in the event of a power cut, a powerful and larger model is a great option – it’s less likely to get misplaced and will come to the rescue in a whole host of scenarios!

Practicality and Usability

If you’re going to be using your torch with gloves on, or in wet conditions, there are a couple of things to look out for.

A larger power button will make the torch much easier to use. This is true of general use, but especially if you’re wearing gloves.

A button that is relatively large and pronounced will make your life a lot easier. It will make it easier to turn the torch on in the dark (because you can feel the switch), and more convenient to click through the different modes.

Some of even the best LED torches have a clicking system to navigate through different light modes. It can take a while to find the mode you want, so I’d recommend getting used to how it works before you take it outside to use in the wilderness. You don’t want to be caught in an emergency where you’re fumbling about with the buttons.

Checking the type of grip that the torch has is also worthwhile. If you’ll be using it in rainy conditions, a rubber or textured shaft will make the torch less slippery and easier to use. A textured torch will also be less likely to roll off a surface and break.

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LED Torch FAQs

Do I need an LED torch with blinking, strobe and SOS modes?

These are useful features to have if you’ll be using your LED torch on outdoor adventures. A blinking or strobe light helps vehicles to see you easily if you are walking by the roadside. The SOS mode uses Morse code – three short flashes, three long flashes, three short flashes – to signal for help in the event that you get into trouble.

Even if your torch doesn’t have these modes, you can still recreate a blinking or SOS signal by flicking the torch on and off by yourself. This would obviously only be possible if you weren’t in immediate danger but it’s good to know that you could improvise if your budget is tight.

What is the brightest LED torch available?

The brightest LED torch available has 100,000 lumens – lots of torches are reportedly brighter than car headlights! But, for everyday use, you won’t need a torch with more than 400 lumens.

Can LED torches damage eyes?

Staring at a bright LED torch is very uncomfortable, but providing you have the appropriate brightness for the task at hand, it’s unlikely to do too much damage. A torch that’s too bright can temporarily damage your vision, especially in very dark conditions.

When using your LED torch outdoors, you’re much more likely to damage other people’s eyes than your own. If you pass another dog walker, cyclist or driver, you could dazzle them temporarily – much like a car with its full beam on. To avoid this, aim the beam towards the floor rather than eye level.

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Sources

1. How LED Flashlights Are Designed And Manufactured, Gizmodo.

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