Nextorch TA30 V2.0 Tactical Flashlight Review
The Nextorch TA30 Tactical flashlight is now available in V2.0. This light offers a simple user interface as well as instant strobe access!
Official Specs and Features
There’s just one version of the Nextorch TA30 Tactical V2.0 flashlight (specifically) but this being a v2.0 implies a previous version.
The going price for the Nextorch TA30 Tactical flashlight, a complete package light is $79.95. It’s available at nextorch.com.
I also have a referral coupon for Nextorch.com that’ll give you 10% off! The code is “ZEROAIR“.
There’s a lot to be said for simplicity, and I’d say that’s what the Nextorch TA30 Tactical flashlight offers. It’s not just simple though – there are a few modes as well as momentary access to turbo or strobe. This fits the bill for “tactical” I would say. The throw is great, and the output is good – both meet specifications. All in all, this is a good contender. Just one thing I really don’t like though, and that’s the PWM. See more about that below.
The Big Table
|Nextorch TA30 V2.0 Tactical Flashlight|
|Price in USD at publication time:||$79.95|
|High Runtime Graph||Medium Runtime Graph|
|Switch Type:||Mechanical and rotary|
|Charge Port Type:||micro-USB (on cell)|
|Power off Charge Port||–|
|Claimed Lumens (lm)||1300|
|Measured Lumens (at 30s)||1363 (104.8% of claim)^|
|Candela per Lumen||15.4|
|Claimed Throw (m)||250|
|Candela (Calculated) in cd (at 30s)||605lux @ 5.804m = 20380cd|
|Throw (Calculated) (m)||285.5 (114.2% of claim)^|
|Measured CCT Range (K)||6100-6900 Kelvin|
|Item provided for review by:||Nextorch|
|All my Nextorch reviews!|
^ Measurement disclaimer: Testing flashlights is my hobby. I use hobbyist-level equipment for testing, including some I made myself. Try not to get buried in the details of manufacturer specifications versus measurements recorded here; A certain amount of difference (say, 10 or 15%) is perfectly reasonable.
- Nextorch TA30 Tactical flashlight
- Nextorch 2600mAh 18650
- 18650 to 2xCR123 adapter
- Spare o-rings (2)
Package and Manual
Build Quality and Disassembly
The Nextorch TA30 Tactical flashlight build quality is good. Honestly, this brings up something I should mention upfront about these lights (and it’s something I’ve corroborated with another enthusiast, too!). When I opened the package of Nextorch lights, I was not thrilled. Based on the box (specifically how the box felt, not how it looks), I figured the contents would be subpar. The package is simply not great. On the flip side of that is the light itself, which is great. So when you order this don’t get too worried about the package!
Also, I could never get these photos to suit my goals for them, so I hope you’ll find them useful.
As part of a rotary-style tailcap user interface, the inside has these beefy contact points. The threads on the body are beefy but fairly fine, as you can see.
I’m really unclear on this little logo you can see below. I am pretty sure it’s a logo, but I don’t see it used anywhere else and I’m not sure what it is… Possibly a plant of some sort – notably, it doesn’t seem to show up in any of the product photos. It’s oddly specific though, and unlikely to be scratches (and the light is otherwise perfect). So… just neat, I guess!
The positive contact inside the cell tube is a nice beefy spring (as you’d want on a tactical flashlight.)
Size and Comps
Officially 137mm x 30mm x 23mm and 99g without battery.
If the flashlight will headstand, I’ll show it here (usually the third photo). If the flashlight will tailstand, I’ll show that here, too (usually the fourth photo).
Here’s the test light with the venerable Convoy S2+. Mine’s a custom “baked” edition Nichia 219b triple. A very nice 18650 light.
And here’s the light beside my custom engraved TorchLAB BOSS 35, an 18350 light. I reviewed the aluminum version of that light in both 35 and 70 formats.
Retention and Carry
A pocket clip is available (and attached) on the Nextorch TA30 Tactical flashlight. This is a very nice-looking friction-fit pocket clip.
The clip shoulder provides ample room for thick pockets or belts or whatever.
And despite looking like a collar clip, it’s a friction-fit clip. If you think that it looks captured though, you’d be right – with the tailcap tightened fully (and why wouldn’t you have it tightened fully?), the tailcap covers just a bit of the arms on this pocket clip. So it’s very secure, despite being a friction-fit pocket clip.
It’s also keyed, as you can see below. The clip will only fit in one place. I like that in a clip – that means it’s always reliably in the same spot in relation to other things (like the rotary dial).
Normally I’d trash this type of lanyard attachment – friction-fit pocket clips aren’t ideal for lanyards. But this clip is (again) captured, so this lanyard is secure. Now you could probably bend the clip, but that’s a different set of issues.
Nextorch also offers a tactical grip for this light. I don’t have one of those for photos.
Power and Runtime
Nextorch includes a cell with the TA30 Tactical flashlight. The cell is a standard button-top 18650, with a capacity of 2600mAh.
The cell is installed into the TA30 in the usual way – positive end (button) toward the head.
In case you forget that the cell tube is also marked with these little positive/negative icons.
Another thing Nextorch provides is a sleeve to allow the use of two CR123 cells. This will replace the included 18650. I didn’t test the light with these cells, but it did hit the specifications with a single 18650, so I doubt performance will be better when using this adapter.
Here are a couple of runtime graphs on the highest two modes.
I said above that this is a “normal” 18650 and that’s true – it’s a standard button top. However, it does offer on-board charging. That’s by way of a micro-USB port in the positive end.
Yes, you read that right! Micro-USB. That’s quite dated but I wouldn’t let that get you down – if you are so in need to avoid micro-USB, just use your own button top or buy some cell that offers USB-C charging. At least the light itself isn’t burdened with micro-USB. So this isn’t perfect but by no means a deal breaker.
Nextorch includes a short USB to micro-USB cable.
Charging is acceptable but quite slow.
Modes and Currents
|Mode||Mode Claimed Output (lm)||Claimed Runtime||Measured Lumens||Tailcap Amps|
Pulse Width Modulation
Aside from the cell having micro-USB charging, here’s my real complaint. The light uses PWM for every mode.
PWM on the highest output was sort of weird-ish so I slowed the timescale to try to capture the full window.
I had to back all the way out to 1ms to see a full cycle, though. This isn’t any big deal at all, just something to notice.
For reference, here’s a baseline shot, with all the room lights off and almost nothing hitting the sensor. Also, here’s the light with the worst PWM I could find. I’m adding multiple timescales, so it’ll be easier to compare to the test light. Unfortunately, the PWM on this light is so bad that it doesn’t even work with my normal scale, which is 50 microseconds (50us). 10ms. 5ms. 2ms. 1ms. 0.5ms. 0.2ms. In a display faster than 0.2ms or so, the on/off cycle is more than one screen, so it’d just (very incorrectly) look like a flat line. I wrote more about this Ultrafire WF-602C flashlight and explained a little about PWM too.
User Interface and Operation
The interface used by Nextorch on this light is very tactical. First, there’s this very prominent (or “proud”) tailswitch.
The switch is mechanical and momentary only. It’s also two-stage, and at the “least pressed” stage offers steady high. At the most-pressed, deepest stage, the output is strobe.
Other than the momentary switch, there’s a rotary dial on the tail, too. This dial has five states – “TAC” (which is effectively off, or “tailswitch only”), I, II, III, and Strobe. There’s a little dot to indicate the current state. Note that in any state but “TAC,” the light will have output! It’ll be on!
Here’s a UI table!
|Any Rotary position||Half-press||High|
|Any Rotary position||Full press||Strobe|
|Rotary position “I”||–||Low|
|Rotary position “II”||–||Medium|
|Rotary position “III”||–||High|
|Rotary position “Strobe”||–||Strobe|
|Rotary Position “TAC”||No action||Off|
This is an unfortunately cumbersome way to write the user interface for the TA30. It’s quite simple in practice.
LED and Beam
Nextorch describes this emitter as an Osram P9. No further information is given. We’ll characterize the emitter below. As you might expect on a tactical light, this TA30 has a nice deep and smooth reflector.
I haven’t covered them before, but the bezel is also strieky, with three (almost certainly) tungsten carbide bearings. This is for breaking glass. I had just finished breaking all my glass, so I was not able to test this feature.
The bezel does allow light to escape when headstanding, though, which I appreciate.
LED Color Report (CRI and CCT)
The output here is cool white – from around 6200K to around 6900K. CRI is also low, at around 70-71.
These beamshots are always with the following settings: f8, ISO100, 0.3s shutter, and manual 5000K exposure. Particularly on the higher output level, the tripod-style bezel can be seen in the beam profile.
Tint vs BLF-348 (KillzoneFlashlights.com 219b version) (affiliate link)
I keep the test flashlight on the left, and the BLF-348 reference flashlight on the right.
I compare everything to the KillzoneFlashlights.com 219b BLF-348 because it’s inexpensive and has the best tint!
What I like
- Simple user interface
- Rotary control is very specific
- High and Strobe access from any state
- Good throw
- Meets output specification
- Very good beam profile for application (and for general usage – this is really what I prefer)
- Friction-fit (but captured) pocket clip has sturdy attachment
- Complete package (includes cell)
What I don’t like
- Just a bit of slop (around 1mm of travel) in the rotary dial (but the detents for each mode are still very specific)
- PWM (but it’s fast enough to not really be a bother)
- On-board (on “cell” really) charging is via micro-USB charging port on the included 18650 cell
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