How would you like to see literally miles away in the dark? Some of these lights have a beam that throws so far that you need binoculars to make the most of them.
Here’s a quick run down and comparison.
Similar to my research on the best pocket thrower flashlight, I put this list together for research primarily for myself and then it gradually grew. I may earn a small commission on some links. So far I only own 5, the MF04, X50, MS07, RS540 and Thor Pro, so most of this research is based on information available online and spending way too much time on BLF and r/flashlight.
Let me know in the comments if I missed any similar lights.
Lumens and throw
I’ve rated each light out of 5 stars for its brightness (lumens) and beam distance (throw). See my Guide to lumens, throw and candela for more info. Lights get a star for each number they can hit. E.g. a light needs to hit at least 10,000 lumens to get 4 stars.
- Lumens (lm): 1000⭐ 2000 ⭐ 5000 ⭐ 10,000 ⭐ 30,000 ⭐
- Throw (m): 100⭐ 400 ⭐ 1000 ⭐ 2000 ⭐ 2500 ⭐
Click a link to jump down the page
|Acebeam flashlights||Acebeam X70|
Acebeam X80-GT 2 🆕
|Astrolux flashlights||Astrolux MF04 – 💰 best budget option for long distance 💰|
Astrolux MF05 – 🥇 longest distance flashlight 🥇
|Imalent flashlights||Imalent MS18 – 🥇 brightest flashlight in the world 🥇|
Imalent MS12 MINI 🆕
Imalent RS50 🆕 – 💰 best budget option for brightness 💰
|Haikelite flashlights||Haikelite HK90|
|Lumintop flashlights||BLF GT|
Lumintop GT94X 🥇 best throw & flood combo 🥇
Lumintop GT8 🆕
Lumintop Thor Pro 🆕
|Wuben flashlights||Wuben A1 🆕|
Acebeam are known for making high power searchlights with very efficient drivers. Most of their lights will have better sustained lumens than many of the other manufacturers.
Imalent released the 53,000lm MS12, then Acebeam released the 60,000lm X70. Imalent went back to the drawing board and came up with the 100,000 MS18. All these lights have lots of LEDs: the X70 has 12 XHP70.2 around a XHP35 HI in the middle.
Similar to the MS18, the X70 throws over a km but only due to sheer output, rather than reflector design. The X70 throws 1115m.
The K75 is Acebeam’s super thrower. It uses a single Luminus SBT90.2 and has specs similar to the GT90 and MF05 but isn’t driven quite as hard. It throws 2500m and outputs 6300lm from the LED and is a fair bit smaller and lighter.
Announced in July 2021, the Acebeam X50 is an upgrade of their X80-GT. The floody X80-GT packed in 18 XHP50.2 LEDs into a small host with tiny reflectors for 32,500 lumens and just 369m throw. The X50 uses 8 XHP70.2 LEDs in a slightly larger host. This produces 40,000 lumens – very impressive for its size. Fewer LEDs and bigger reflectors helps the X50 throw 800m. This is still floody but reaches significantly further than the X80.
Acebeam X80-GT 2
The X80-GT 2 is the latest version of Acebeam’s 3 * 18650 cell flood monster. The first X80 was 25,000 lumens, then the GT came along at 32,500 lumens. The X80 is tiny for a powerful light and has a very shallow reflector. This means the light is all flood and no throw.
The updated GT 2 now uses newer XHP50.3 HI LEDs, which provide a small bump in lumens but more importantly a big increase in throw. If you buy this then make sure you get the latest version.
Astrolux have some very high power flashlights that are competitively priced. Most of their high power lights are manufactured by Mateminco. I have a big guide to Astrolux flashlights, which covers some of their smaller lights too.
Astrolux MF04 / Mateminco MT35
Around the time the GT was being created, Astrolux (Banggood’s own brand, manufactured by Mateminco) released the MF04. This light is very similar to the original GT with an XHP35 LED but is pushed slightly harder. It produces 2700lm and reaches 2416m, both slightly more than the GT.
I have the Astrolux MF04 and it’s the biggest flashlight I own. Definitely impressive and one of the cheapest on this list.
The MF04S is the same as the Astrolux MF04 but with a bigger XHP70.2 LED. This is the same idea as the GT70 version of the GT.
This bumps up lumens from 2700lm to 6000lm and reduces throw from 2416m to 1549m.
Astrolux MF05 / Mateminco MT90 Plus
The MF05 uses a single SBT90.2 LED in a 160mm head (compared to 135mm for the GT). The LED is driven to 7500lm and throws over 3162m (over 3km or 1.96 miles!). There’s a fan on the handle to help with cooling.
Haikelite have put 3 SBT90.2 emitters in a flashlight body with 3 21700 cells. This results in 18,000lm and 2000m throw!
Imalent are known for currently making the worlds brightest flashlights. They fit as many LEDs in a flashlight as possible and drive them as hard as possible. The result is flashlights that have incredible output on turbo modes.
A high power flashlight list isn’t complete without mention of the MS18. Imalent cram as many LEDs as possible into a light and drive them as hard as they can. The MS18 contains 18 big XHP70.2 LEDs, all with their own tiny reflector. This produces just 1350m throw but an incredible 100,000lm.
There’s also the older MS12, with 53,000lm at 913m throw.
Imalent MS12 MINI
As the name implies, the Imalent MS12MINI is a mini version of the MS12. It’s basically a slightly bigger MS08, with a few more LEDs crammed in and lots more lumens. With this much light in a small size, it’ll be very floody and get hot quickly. This many lumens from a light less than 15cm / 6 inches is incredible.
The R90TS is just like the MS18 but it switches the XHP70.2s for the smaller XHP35s – 18 of them! That means it’s less bright (36,000lm on turbo) but throws further at 1750m. There’s also the older Imalent R90C at 20,000lm and 1679m, which uses 9 XHP35 LEDs.
Imalent have done something new here with the MS08. They kne that just adding more power into a smaller flashlight would result in something literally too hot to handle. The MS08 uses a plastic fan shell that helps keep the light cool. Imalent says the light can sustain 10,000 lumens. The MS08 and Acebeam X50 specs are very similar, from the cells and LEDs to the specs.
The Imalent RS50 is an updated version of the MS08 that swaps the XHP70.2 LEDs for more throwy XHP50.3 HI LEDs. These result in fewer lumens but significantly more throw.
Lumintop BLF GT (aka “Giggles”)
This was the first in the GT series. A collaboration between Lumintop and BudgetLightForum. The GT takes 8 cells and weighs 1800g. This version has the CREE XHP35 HI LED. In a single cell light, the XHP35 is normally a good balance of lumens and throw but in the 135mm diameter GT the LED throws 2000m and outputs 2000lm.
Lumintop BLF GT70
The GT70 is the same as the GT but with an XHP70.2 LED. These LEDs are 4 times the area, so are brighter and don’t throw as far. The GT70 “only” throws 1400m but it’s 7500lm. The beam is generally more practical and having more lumens still makes it look impressive.
Take a look at this guide to emitters on BLF if you want to the a the difference between the 2 LEDs.
Lumintop BLF GT90
Following the trend, the GT90 is the same host with a different LED. This uses the renowned Luminus SBT90.2 LED that has the throw from the XHP35 and the lumens from the XHP70.2. The GT90 is over 5500 lumens and throws 2720m.
The SBT90.2 is an expensive LED and often makes up over 50% of the flashlight cost. This makes is a difficult LED choice in some lights. Not in the GT90’s case though, as the huge chunks of aluminium set you back over $300 and the addition of the SBT90.2 is just a fraction of that.
The BLF GT4 deviates a bit from the GT flashlights above. The GT4 has 4 LEDs (XHP70.2) in the reflector and a slightly different host.
More LEDs means more lumens but a lower reflector to LED size ratio. That results in a shorter throw of 1300m. 1300m would still be considered very throwy if it was a single emitter light but it’s the shortest throwing light on this list.
The GT4 has big fins to help sustain the high lumens. On turbo it can reach a massive 25,000lm and due to its 3kg weight it will sustain more lumens than nearly any other light. The handle helps with carrying it and also means your hands don’t get burnt when it heats up.
Lumintop BLF GT94
What happens if you combine the GT90 with the GT4? You get 4 SBT90.2 LEDs that can throw 2600m and output 20,000lm!
This is incredible! I don’t think there’s any other consumer light that throws over 2000m whilst having an output more than 10,000lm, yet along 20,000lm!
The GT94 uses 8 18650 cells.
The GT94X is the same as the GT94 but uses bigger 21700 cells instead of 18650 cells for a bit more power. 24,000 lumens and 2950m throw! It uses 4 21700 cells with a short tube as standard but can be powered by 8 if you get the long tube.
Not much us known about the Lumintop GT8 yet, other than it has 8 XHP70.2 LEDs. Expect this to be almost twice as bright as the GT4 and throw around the same distance. My guess is 45,000 lumens and 1350m throw.
Lumintop Thor Pro
The Lumintop Thor Pro is one of the world’s first combined LED and LEP flashlight. In includes a small size LEP in the middle, throwing about 1300m and 8 LEDs around the outside, providing over 12,000 lumens. That results in similar specs on paper to the much bigger Lumintop BLF GT70.
The Wuben A1 uses 4 SBT90.2 LEDs, just like the Lumintop GT94. As well as being high power, it also comes with lots of features, like power bank functionality and a remote control. Wuben also allow you to request other LEDs in this light.
The Astrolux MF05 is currently the furthest throwing flashlight you can get (aside from very custom ones or incredibly expensive ones). It’s also very bright.
The Imalent MS18 is by far the brightest light you can get but although it throws a long way, most other lights in this list will throw a lot further.
Here’s an overview of them all, ordered by lumens:
|Imalent MS18||100,000 🔦||1350m||18 x XHP70.2|
|Acebeam X70||60,000||1115m||12 x XHP70.2, 1 x XHP35|
|Imalent R90TS||36,000||1679m||18 x XHP35|
|Lumintop BLF GT4||30,000||1300m||4 x XHP70.2|
|Lumintop BLF GT94||15,000||2600m||4 x SBT90.2|
|Astrolux MF05||7500||3162m 🔦||Luminus SBT90.2|
|Lumintop BLF GT70||7500||1400m||CREE XHP70.2|
|Acebeam K75||6300||2500m||Luminus SBT90.2|
|Lumintop BLF GT90||5500||2720m||Luminus SBT90.2|
|Astrolux MF04||2700||2416m||CREE XHP35|
|Lumintop BLF GT||2000||2000m||CREE XHP35|
Here’s a chart of lumens vs throw for these lights. The MS18 is at the top left and the MF05 is at the bottom right. If you can only afford one then the Imalent R90TS looks like the best compromise, with 36,000lm and 1679m throw.
Hard to buy flashlights
Hopefully I’ve got all the biggest, brightest and best LED flashlights in this list. There’s a few other flashlights that throw a long way but they’re very hard to get hold of.
|MicroFire Light Storm S90||9km||Features a “solid state light source”, which I think means a LEP. 20Mcd. Weighs 4.5kg and that’s not even including a battery pack, so this isn’t exactly pocket friendly. Has a motorised adjustable beam.|
|Peak Beam Maxa Beam MBS-410||6.9km?||Used in films like Jurassic Park and heavily featured on the X-files. I’m not 100% sure about the throw but “3,500 meters (1 lux on target)” should equate to 7km ANSI throw. You have to “request a quote” to find out the price. Uses a 85 Watt Xenon Short Arc Lamp and is motorised for an adjustable beam.|
|MicroFire OptiSpike S50||5.5km||Smaller version of the S90. Only 3kg with the battery pack.|
|Lemax LX70 SUPERPOWER||4.25km||Weighing in at 3.7 kg and 351 mm long, the LX70 is similar dimensions to the Astrolux MF05.|
|MicroFire Light Wall SP750||2.5km||50,000 lumens! Similar throw to the Lumintiop GT94 but over twice the lumens. Looks like it needs a separate battery pack.|
LEP (Laser Excited Phosphor flashlights)
LEP means Laser Excited Phosphor. These flashlights shine a laser on phosphor (the same chemical that makes LEDs shine but they use a semiconductor instead of the laser). This gives a white light that isn’t especially bright but is incredibly focused.
LEP flashlights can throw as far as some of the most powerful LED flashlights that are 5 or more times the size and weight.
LEPs are quite incredible but aren’t so practical for everyday use as their beam is so focused.
1lumen has a great page on LEPs. The Maxtoch L2K LEP at 2.7km (or L3K at 3km) seems to be the best at the moment, followed by the Weltool W4 LEP. If you can get your hands on it, then the Acebeam W50 is specced at 4km!
|Maxtoch Owleyes W Pro||4km|
|Maxtoch L3K LEP||3km|
|Maxtoch L2K LEP||2.7km|
|Weltool W4 LEP||2.6km|
Last updated: April 2nd 2022. First published: Sep 10th 2020.