lumens

Nightstick USB-556xl

 Everyone should have a good flashlight, at least in my opinion. Nightstick is starting to be one of my favorites. Recently they introduced a new series of USB rechargeable tactical flashlights. After reading the press release, I asked if they would send one out. Nightstick sent the USB-556xl. The 556xl is a single cell LED flashlight with a max output of 750 lumens.

 The usb-556xl is packed with features. As one could guess, it is USB rechargeable. It comes with a little usb cord also, but not the charger. In today’s world, finding a usb charger is easy enough. Since I am on the usb, the 556xl has a built in micro-usb charging port. The port is hidden underneath part of the handle. One must unscrew the center section and then slide it down to reveal the usb port. It is not the easiest to unscrew because of the o-rings used to seal the flashlight charging port. There is also a tiny light above the charging port. The light is red when charging, and green when fully charged. Nightstick says it takes 4 hours to fully charge, and that seems correct, but I never actually timed it. While I like the usb charging function, the 556xl does use a proprietary lithium-ion battery. Once charged, just slide the cover back on, and screw it closed.

 Since the usb-556xl is a tactical light, it has options that are quite useful. For instance, it uses a push button tailcap. The light will automatically shine on high, momentarily, if you push the button part way down. Of course it then turns off when released. Also, if you push the button all the way in, it turns on, on the high setting. To get it into the medium or low setting, hold the tailcap down while the light is on, then release pressure when it gets to the setting you desire. Once the light is turned off, it defaults back to the high position. This is probably my favorite function. Because when I want the light on, or need it on, having it on the high setting is ideal. The light also has a strobe function. To access the strobe, you have to push the tailcap button all the way down, twice, quickly. It only strobes at the high output, but can be turned on from either low, med, or high while the light is on. I prefer lights without a strobe, but Nightstick doesn’t offer this light without a strobe function. I would like the button to be inset farther into the tailcap, that way one could set the flashlight down on a flat surface, and have it shine upward to illuminate a room or something.

 I seldom use a pocket clip, but the 556xl has one. Mainly the light just gets put in my pocket, but some people find the clip useful. The clip on the 556xl isn’t that great. It works, but is a little flimsy or thin. The clip is easily removed also. One advantage to the removable clip is that it can be turned around. By doing so, it can be clipped to things, letting light shine outward away from it. I actually did this and clipped it to a hat bill. So everywhere I looked, the light was shining. Kind of like a headlamp.

 Specs, everyone wants to know these. First up, the light is bright. On high it is rated at 750 lumens and 9350 candela. Medium is 250 lumens and 2950 candela. Low is 80 lumens and 1115 candela. You get a 1hr/2hr/5hr runtime at the above settings. So pretty good for a 750 lumen light. I loved these, the high setting lights up my backyard better than my porch light. On high the beam wasn’t too wide and the light shines pretty far. I do use the medium setting alot. It is useful for finding dropped screws and such. Not too bright, but not too dim. I hardly use the low setting, it is a little too bright for finding stuff in the car at night. But then again, the low setting works good if you need to see where you are going, especially if there isn’t much ambient light. The 556xl can be submerged up to 1 meter for 30 minutes before something bad might happen. At 4.7” in length, it is not too big for pocket carry. It also only weighs 4.4 ounces. The body on the 556xl is 1” wide, and the head is a little larger at 1.2”s. If you like black, your in luck, because you can have any color, as long as it’s black. But, it is a class III anodized aluminum body, so it should last a long time.

Low setting

Medium setting

High setting

 This light has been in my pocket, everyday for almost 6 months. It shows some wear, but not too bad. I really like how it can be charged just about anywhere. At 750 lumens, it is bright enough for anything I need. It doesn’t classify as “all the lumens,” but what can you expect for a single cell light. I’ve dropped it on concrete, in water, and it keeps on working, the lens isn’t even scratched up. Do I think this is a decent tactical light? The answer would be yes, even if it has some minor flaws.

 If you are looking for a decent flashlight, the Nightstick usb-556xl is worth looking into. I really like the usb charging feature. It has good runtime, especially if you don’t use it on the high setting. At around $100, it’s not cheap, but is in the same price range as competing models. Do yourself a favor and go checkout Nightstick, they manufacture all different types of lights.

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:

USB rechargeable tactical light

Target Market:

Anyone wanting a bright rechargeable tactical flashlight

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • 750/250/80 lumen output

  • 1/2/5 hour runtimes

  • 4.7” long

  • 4.4 ounces

  • Rechargeable

  • IP-X7 waterproof (1m for 30 min)

  • 6061 anodized aluminum construction

  • Momentary, constant on, and strobe

  • LED

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?

320 and 900 lumen models

Link to other reviews:

None found

Price point:

MSRP = $111.00

Retail = $83.25 on Amazon

I need it now! Availability:

Amazon or Here

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Bright

  • Momentary (750 lumen only)

  • Low, Med, High settings

  • USB Rechargeable

  • Lightweight

Cons:

  • Pocket Clip

  • Proprietary battery

  • End cap (button recess)

  • Strobe function

Score: 7.00 Good

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NightStick TWM-850XL Weapon mounted light

  NightStick lighting products are fairly new at weapon mounted lights. Don’t let that fool you, these lights are robust and powerful. Nightstick is a division of Bayco products, who have been doing portable lighting products for over 30 years. I saw them at SHOT 2018 and they were gracious enough to send out one of their new TWM-850XL weapon mounted lights for review.

 The TWM-850XL is a full size light. Not the mini’s that are made to fit the smaller handguns. Being that it is full size, it is a comparable size to the common TLR-1 HL. So much so, that many holsters made for a pistol with the TLR-1 will fit the Nightstick. The TWM-850XL does not have the strobe option, but they do make the same light with a strobe option.

 Let’s get into what makes the Nightstick weapon light shine. As with pretty much all high output lights, it uses a CREE LED rated at 850 lumens and 15000 candela. Bright enough to go 245 meters, or so they say. But identifying something at that distance is not something I would try. The house at the end of the street, about 125 yds away, probably hates me now. Even with street lights on, the 850XL did a decent job of lighting up their house. Could I identify someone? No, but make out figures and trees, yes. As with most lights, they appear to work better at distance without much ambient light. In the pictures you can see the spill pattern to some extent and also how the different distances affect detail.The light wasn’t on a firearm when I shined it down the street or at the shady person on the side of the road.

Approximately 75yds Dark

Approximately 75yds. This also does a decent job of showing the beam pattern

Approximately 25yds

Approximately 50yds

Approximately 35yds

 Nightstick did a pretty good job putting in lots of useable features. The first one that comes to mind is their switch mechanism. The switches are made from a glass filled nylon to give them strength and are ambidextrous. Probably my favorite feature, is how the switches operate. Pushing down on either side operates the momentary on. Yes, down on either side, unlike the TLR-1. Pushing up on either side turns the light on. To turn the light off, just push down on either side of the switches and it turns off. When turning the light from constant on to off, It will go to momentary on the opposite side from which it was flipped to on, then just let up and it is off. If you switch it off on the side that it was turned to “on”, it will go to the off position. I found that, in this case, the switch just passed off and went to momentary also. Not a big deal, just something to mention. Once I got use to the way the switching worked, I really liked it.

 I’ll try not to bore you to death with the specifications, because most are listed below. The 850XL does use a hardcoat anodized aluminum housing. For now, it is only available in black. It is water resistant. It also uses 2 of the CR123 batteries, which are supplied. One must take the light off of a handgun to replace the batteries. If you have it mounted on a rifle, it is possible to replace them with the light still mounted. The battery door flips down once the screw is loosened that holds it on. The lens is made out of polycarbonate, the same material many safety glasses are made from. Nightstick also adds an anti scratch coating to the lens. Battery life is specified at 1.75 hrs. After about 1.5 hrs, the output started dying off for me. Yes, it does get hot if left on. Each weapon light is also has its own serial number.

 When mounting to a pistol, or rifle, the 850-XL came with 2 cross rail inserts. These cross rails allow the user to mount the light on different types of rails. On the top of the light, where it mounts to a rail, are 4 tiny slots. The slots are used to position the light onto the rail by installing 1 or both of the cross rail inserts. Depending on who’s rail you are using. I just held the light up to the rail and lined it up with the appropriate cross rail slot. The instruction tell you what handgun to use with what slot, but that’s no fun. I put a tiny amount of threadlocker on the screws holding the cross rail in, just for added protection.

 I have tried the 850XL on a few firearms. Typically I use it on my Polymer80 compact. The light does extend out about an inch past the muzzle. But I have had zero problems with it at all. I did mount it on an AR to try out. It wasn’t as weird as one might think. I just put my support hand right behind it and was able to operate the light with my thumb. I didn’t put many rounds downrange with the light mounted on the rifle, but I did run around the house with it mounted up. Nightstick does make a rifle version that uses a push button end cap.

 I think it is good to have another weapon mounted light in the market. The Nightstick TWM-850XL has worked well for me. I think it is on par with the TLR-1. The quality is nice, it won’t break the bank, and it’s bright. Go take a look at the Nightstick line, they might have something worth using.

 

Firearms Insider Reviews - 8 Key Points

Claim to Fame:

High output weapon mounted light

Target Market:

Those wanting a high output weapon mounted light

FNBs (Features & Benefits of this product):

  • 850 Lumens

  • 15000 Candela

  • 2 m drop rating

  • IP-X7 Waterproof (1m for 30 min)

  • Flashlight Runtime: 1.75 hours

  • Length: 3.75 in (95 mm)

  • Width: 1.5 in (38 mm)

  • Depth: 1.5 in (38 mm)

  • Weight: 5.4 oz (155 g)

  • Head Diameter: 1.2 in (30 mm)

  • Ambidextrous toggle switch

  • Momentary or constant-on flashlight

  • Aircraft-grade 6061-T6 aluminum housing

  • Glass-filled nylon polymer toggle switch

  • Type III hard anodized finish

  • Beam distance rated at 245 meters

  • Impact & chemical resistant

  • Serialized for personal identification

  • 2 CR123 batteries (included)

What other aesthetic options or finishes are available?

With Strobe option

What others are saying:

Chris K. at Bayco Products: 5/5 stars
Absolutely AWESOME FELLAS!

  This thing feels SOLID as a rock, and the light output is INSANE...I can see why Police/First Responders would use this - because the controls are ingenious and easy, and the amount of "light 'em up" it produces is, well, GREAT!!! 

When I'm out with my dog at night, I've got this on my M&P Pro 9mm and if a coyote pack is lurking, simply point and hit the light and it's almost like a car's headlight on high!

  Thanks for making an excellent product! ABSOLUTELY WORTH $100 - NO DOUBT! I now want this in a flashlight form, and the light for my long guns! 100% endorse - get this bad boy if you do ANYTHING REQUIRING LIGHTING AND GUNS!!

Link to other reviews:

Ammoland TWM-850XLS review

Price point:

MSRP = $150.96

Retail = $85.87 on Amazon

I need it now! Availability:

Amazon 

Our Rating:

Pros:

  • Bright

  • TLR-1 size

  • Adjustable cross rail inserts

Cons:

  • Must take off to replace batteries

  • Size

Score: 8.00 Great

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Favorite Link:   Polymer 80