Mike Williamson’s Product Review: Nitecore Flashlights and Battery Chargers

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I need to review several products from the Nitecore company, as they’re accumulating around my office and seem to be multiplying.

First, the Nitecore Intellicharger i4. We’ve been using this at the house for a year now, and it’s excellent.

Unlike many battery chargers, this doesn’t require them to be charged in pairs.  Singles of different amp hour ratings, and even different types, can all be charged at once.  It handles Ni-Cd, NiMH, Li-ion, and various types and sizes up to C.  If you have a battery that needs charged, stick it in and let the charger have at it.

Every cell has come out topped off to peak voltage and power, with no issues.  There’s not much more need be said.

While D cells don’t fit, I found I was able to use a metal shim to get one between the poles and charge it that way.  This is not recommended by the manufacturer, and I offer it as an emergency option only. 

MSRP is $30, and I highly recommend it.

Next is the SRT7 light, which I’m carrying in my car for business use.  960 lumens is a lot of light, and useful when setting up or unloading in the dark.  For tactical purposes, it’s blindingly bright, uncomfortable even with eyelids closed.

The SRT7 is a rheostat controlled light that starts with a rescue strobe, dials through flashing blue/red LED setting for emergencies and police use, red, green and blue LEDs for signaling, maritime, aircraft or night illumination, to a white setting that is very white, the brightness dialing from a spark all the way up to full intensity, then to two different strobe speeds.  The tail cap is momentary or on/off, and the light remembers its last setting because the rheostat ring is a physical switch. 

With the color settings, I can foresee someone taping one to their craft in an emergency. 
Battery life and toughness are excellent.  It’s a bit large for carry in business wear, but still compact enough for a tool or gun belt, or a box or console.  The large reflector increases beam throw and range over the smaller lights.

The light comes with a holster, lanyard, clip and spare switch and gasket assembly. 

The SRT7 retails at $129 and is often available cheaper.

Last is their MH25 Hunting Kit that comes with the light, a USB cable (the battery can be charged in the unit via USB), the Li-ion battery, two filters (red and green), a remote switch and rail mount for weapon mounting, holster, lanyard, clip, spare switch, all in a hardshell case that would also double as a small handgun case.  The MH25, in “turbo” mode, goes straight to 860 lumens, and lowers it after three minutes to conserve batteries.  This is for spotlighting game (where legal) or threats, or to disorient an opponent. The user defined settings involve loosening the head slightly, then pressing the tail switch to select mode.  I found this awkward and non-intuitive.  It will take practice to learn.  The available settings are dim, medium, bright, strobe and SOS.

The significant advantage on this model is the onboard USB charging, and I’d like to see them expand it to more models.

Despite the awkward controls, the unit is tough and well built.  If you’re familiar with modern tactical lights and have a use for this, it’s a good value.  If you are not familiar with modern tactical light controls, or need more flexibility, I would recommend against it, and suggest the SRT7 instead.

Retail for the MH25 kit is $144, for the light by itself, $99.

The company offers lights from 12 lumens to 3,500 lumens in a variety of compact sizes. Their accessories are well thought out.  Quality is top notch so far.  I highly recommend the Intellicharger for anyone with rechargeable batteries. It has both simplified the task and brought all batteries to peak performance.

All these, and most of my other light purchases, have been made through FlashlightOutlet.com.  Larry, the owner, is very knowledgeable of all brands, well-versed in the physics of illumination, and provides top notch customer service.  He can recommend lights for any function and purpose, and offers very competitive prices.

All products in this review were purchased.  I have no financial interest in the companies. – Michael Z. Williamson (SurvivalBlog Editor at Large)

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