300 lumens

If you get a reputable Brand Light -
You can generally believe the Lumen Rating.
Streamlight, Surefire, Olight, etc

For the Chinese “Knock offs”
“Not so much”

If Streamlight says a light is Rated at 300 lumens than it “will be”.
Chinese Knock-offs - Hmmm - Doubtful
Rated for 1,000 lumens ?
It might be 300 - Might.
That is why I initially said you want to look at 1k lumens minimum.
An “Actual” 300 lumens is generally enough for CQB and XCQB Work.
ie “Inside a house.”


Olight is chinese…got a bunch of their stuff (went nuts one night, bought 3 pistol lights, a long gun light, 2 flashlights, and got an o’bulb, penlight, and keychain light for “free”) from 100ish-14000 lumens. The only things I don’t like about them, besides origin, is the custom batteries they use, which can only be replaced by Olight at a premium price, and their charge adapters, which look like straight android…but aren’t.
Got to say, the Marauder 2, which I bought later from elsewhere for $100 less than O’lights site, is incredible. 14000 lumens claimed, all I know is it lights up everything in sight on spread for 150 yards, and I mean everything, and on the square beam, 800 meters rating iirc…it seems to be all of that.


I think I should mention that although you used the term “knockoff,” some might misconstrue that as referring to any Chinese made/brand light. It is true that there are a number of flashlights that have blatantly false or misleading advertising… often made overseas.

Although I really like Surefire and Streamlight, there are some very nice options from Acebeam, Nitecore, Fenix, Eagletac, O-light, etc. as well as lower cost brands like Sofirn, Convoy, Noctigon, Lumintop, etc. I’ll even mention some that make compatible components (some might argue being knockoffs) including Malkoff (American), Lumens Factory (Chinese), and some other SF compatible component companies which are now defunct but highly sought after from SF fans that want more options.

One side note… some complaints I’ve read on certain models (including SF) were related to “not being as bright as” another brand/model, when the flashlight in question was a flood or floody beam profile, or even just a larger spill vs an abbreviated spill. Even measurements of OTF lumens vs actual lumans, or ANSI lumens, or MAX brightness vs. after 30 seconds or even losses on zoomed out zoomies can be misleading.

Last, one other benefit to American Companies (or companies within the country of the consumer), is the slightly less complicated repair/warranty process. If one decides to try a reputable Chinese branded flashlight, it’s my suggestion that you use a reputable US dealer, as they add a layer of local customer service for warranty/repair/return issues. Although not always, this often means NOT pruchasing on Amazon or similar service (unless the seller has been vetted). I know on some flashlight forums that certain sellers are considered more reputable, responsive, and honest than others when purchasing directly from overseas sellers.


The reflector design has a lot to do with how well a light works. You can have two lights with the exact same emitter that put out dramatically different amounts of light.

Also there is a lot of variability in quality within the same brand. I have some Fenix and O-lights and most of there models are great but some of there lower end stuff is poorly built junk.

I think most good 300 lumin lights are great for indoor use. Not so bright they will blind you with the light reflecting off the walls but more then bright enough to see what you need to. If you want to blind others or see a ways outdoors brighter May be better.

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Thanks for your information, expertise and input on this issue.
What is your background, training, expertise, etc ?

“My” main concentration is Defensive Guns, Actual Tactical Shooting,
Defensive Posture/Home Defense/Tactics etc.(Home, car, work, etc)
For 10+ yr now. After being shot-at a few times in the mountains and
barely escaping a couple times.

I have and use mostly Streamlight (for weapons mounts)
and they have performed well for me many yrs now and all weather.
I have shot in a Defensive or Combat Type Competition most every week for 10yr now.
So “Tactical” Shooting and Guns is my Focus.
Pouring Rain, Snow, Sleet, Boiling Heat.
In the mud, boats, cars, vans, roofs, ditches, name it.
Movers, movers while moving, etc.
Pistol/Rifle/Shotgun, some times a knife :slightly_smiling_face:

Although I have found, for my carry/pocket lights, the Chinese?
Ultra-Fire, wf502b to be (Largely) Very Dependable and Very Rugged.
Although they are rated at 1k lumens they do good to produce
“maybe” 1-200 :slightly_smiling_face:

Ultra-fire Batteries:
Using 18650, 300m A h / 3.7v li-ion
Found them to last long, recharge well and perform well.

My electrician left one of these lights out on his gravel driveway for 3yrs Tennessee.
Ran over it “many times”, etc.
Found it - turned it on - worked like new :slightly_smiling_face:
Still working, now, after say 10yr now.
“Go Figure”?


I don’t have a tactical background. I do, however, use flashlights almost everyday. I also often work in dirty environments, and use different flashlights depending on the job. Mud, salt, rain, sweat, garbage, sewage, moldy sludge, sawdust, snow, etc. are encountered commonly and usually for prolonged periods.

Your post doesn’t mention “defensive only” flashlights. Although I find myself gravitating to “all-around” flashlights that can stretch to defensive roles, I don’t carry a separate dedicated defensive flashlight with my EDC flashlight (which would be the better option). I will, however, switch out flashlights that are more utility for something with more defensive purpose when I think it is appropriate… although that usually means I probably won’t be using it that day.

Some things worth looking into (just my understanding, not stating these as facts)…

  1. Ultra-Fire batteries have had a history of lieing about their specs, e.g. amperage (A) and capacity (mAh). There are some reviews of UltraFire’s “9800” mAh and “5000” mAh 18650’s from a couple years ago which also state that the “protection” from overcharge and over discharge did not exist even though the wrapping said otherwise. Here’s a link to one review:
    Test/review of UltraFire CN18650 9800mAh (Yellow) | BudgetLightForum.com

  1. Be careful with even SF and SL lumen specs vs expectations. Streamlight goes the extra-mile in transparency by making the chart of their lumens vs runtimes available both on their website and often on the back of the packaging itself. Fenix, a Chinese brand, often has thier runtime charts posted as well.

Here’s a link to a 350 lumen Streamlight’s runtime chart from Streamlight’s product page (I own it amongst some other SL models). This 350 lumen flashlight seems to be more of a 200 lumen flashlight after 30 minutes. Although this is how many flashlights work, some might be confused when they actually use a flashlight for prolonged periods… at least for flashlights that will fit in a pocket. Significant decrease on some of their higher lumen models sometimes happens within the first 10 minutes. However, this is the norm for these types of lights.

Again, as mentioned before, beam profile is also going to play a role. 300 lumen at 900 candela is going to perform differently than 300 lumen at 10K candela.

Also… IIRC, Streamlight’s components are made in China and assembled in America. I could be wrong.


Welcome fellow flashlight enthusiasts! (I think we should lobby for a flashlight section in the Gear category :wink: )

Someone famous once said:

There are lies… damn lies… and then there’s statistics lumen counts

For background, lumens is a measure of the total light OUTPUT. And candela is the measure of all the light that hits ONE SPOT.

Lumen count is only a piece of the story, that needs to be balanced with candela. Other criteria includes runtime in total, runtime at “max” output, and UI (aka buttons).

So you can have a light like the Surefire DualFuel with 1500 lumens and folks complain that it doesn’t throw very far. Then a light like the Modlite OKW comes along with 680 lumens (less than half) and can easily throw across a football field. You get that balance by the reflector material, shape, the glass/plastic lens, etc which “shapes” the light output.

I think that Streamlight makes “most” of their lights in the USA, but I am pretty sure their HL-X which is a fantastic ~$100 rifle light is made in China. Olight definitely make all their stuff in China. Surefire, Modlite, and Cloud Defensive are AMAZING lights, but are definitely way more expensive.

As to whether 300lumens is “enough”? It depends on what you’re doing with it. 300 lumens for an EDC-type light is plenty. For defensive weapon use, IMO, the minimum is ~500lumens, but candela plays a HUGE part here.

And definitely… avoid knockoffs. If you buy from Amazon (which is increasingly becoming not a good place for this) make sure its a reputable seller. I try to buy direct from the manufacturer’s website when possible.


I got my Marauder 2 O’light and a couple pistol lights from these guys. They sell some nice guns as well https://youtube.com/c/ArmsUnlimited