I’ve reviewed a lot of monster pocket flashlights that deliver insane outputs. However, I have never seen a flashlight like the Nitecore TM9K that delivers such a high output in such a small form factor. Today, I’m excited to share with you my review of this tiny monster, as Nitecore calls it, flashlight. I’ll be looking over the features this pocket flashlight has to offer and end with my overall opinion on the light. Let’s get started.
9500 Lumen Pocket Flashlight Beast
9500 lumens. That’s how much this flashlight delivers in power. That alone is impressive but when combined with the fact that this flashlight is less than 5 inches in length – mind blown. This flashlight is small enough for everyday carry and yet can deliver 9500 lumens. Now, the look of the flashlight is great. I don’t think every user will want to carry this flashlight due to the large head it has. The head is over an inch and a half so it can be a little bulky in the pocket. For my EDC lights, I typically prefer flashlights that have a diameter of 1 inch or less. However, for 9500 lumens, you’ll bend the rules a bit.
The TM9K features 9 Cree XP-L HD V6 LEDs. So you can get a good idea how this light has such an intense output. The beam on this light is completely flooded. It doesn’t have a hotspot although it has a bit of centralized light. I wouldn’t call this a hotspot because it really diffuses out and in the lower settings, you can barely see a difference between the centralized light and the spill. So doesn’t really have much throw to it with a maximum distance is 268 meters. You can expect this light to be better for up close work.
USB-C Rechargeable Flashlight
Another rechargeable flashlight that uses USB type-c charging! I’m so excited to see more and more powerful lights that use this charging feature. USB-C charging is quick and efficient. While you’re charging it, there is an indicator next to the tail switch that will flash while it’s charging and will stop when it’s finished charging.
The TM9K LED flashlight has a built-in 21700 lithium-ion battery with a 5000mah capacity. You’re not able to remove this battery at all. It’s a powerful battery to say the least, but it is disappointing to see built-in batteries. I think 9 times out of 10 when I have an issue with a flashlight it tends to be the battery. That being the case, Nitecore does have a really good warranty on their lights so if your flashlight is giving you issues, they’ll take care of it within their warranty time.
There is a battery level indicator and low voltage warning indicator with this light. The battery level indicator is a little weird. You have to lock the flashlight out in order for the indicator to tell you the battery level. It’ll flash to let you know what the battery level is at. While you’re using the light, when the battery drops to 50% of its charge, the indicator starts flashing every 2 seconds. Once the battery is nearly depleted, the indicator will start flashing quickly and continuously. That’s the low voltage warning. With this low voltage warning, I don’t really think there’s much need for the battery level indicator. However, I appreciate that Nitecore still includes a battery level indicator. I do think it’s a little weird that you have to lock out the flashlight to see it though. Either way, the low voltage warning is great and I like that it alerts you when the battery is less than 50%.
Operating the Nitecore TM9K LED Flashlight
This compact flashlight has a very intuitive and tactical user interface. It has dual tail switches with the main switch being the circular button and the mode switch being the secondary half moon button. With the main switch you can turn the flashlight on and off as well as access a momentary on. With the mode switch, you can select the different outputs and access the strobe mode and the turbo mode.
This light features a mode memory function which will remember the last brightness level you used. Especially handy for everyday carry flashlights. In order to access the turbo mode, press and hold the mode button. To access the strobe you double press the mode button. You can also lock out the flashlight which is great because it’s pretty easy to turn the main switch on by accident. If you’re putting the flashlight in a bag or you don’t think you’ll be using it for a couple hours, I’d recommend locking it out.
Nitecore TM9K Multiple Brightness Levels
The TM9K pocket flashlight features 5 brightness levels and a strobe mode. You have turbo at 9500 lumens, high at 1900 lumens, mid at 460 lumens, low at 130 lumens, and ultra-low at 30 lumens. The maximum run time is 60 hours, a decent run time for an everyday carry flashlight.
One thing to note is that the turbo mode is a burst turbo. This means the turbo mode is not going to last very long. In fact, that 9500 lumen mode lasts only a few seconds. You can get a bit more time depending on the environmental temperature, but not much. With compact flashlights that deliver these high outputs, you can expect a very brief turbo mode. The TM9K does feature a temperature protection system which will decrease the output of a flashlight as the flashlight gets too hot. And believe me, this flashlight gets hot.
Final Thoughts on the Nitecore TM9K Tiny Monster Flashlight
Pros: Nitecore knocked it out of the park with this flashlight. It’s possibly the most powerful pocket flashlight I’ve reviewed to date. 9500 lumens is nothing to sneeze at especially not with a light that’s smaller than 5 inches. I appreciate the tail switch operation which is very tactical by nature. If you’re wanting a more tactical pocket flashlight, I think this would be the way to go.
It’s USB-C rechargeable, my favorite type of charging right now. And it has a lot of great features to offer including a shortcut to turbo, strobe, and a mode memory function. Not to mention that the low voltage indicator is a huge plus.
Cons: One downfall of this flashlight is that the built-in battery. I, along with many other flashlight users, prefer to remove the battery and I definitely like flashlights that can use multiple battery sources. So it’s disappointing that you’re stuck with this battery. If the battery dies on you, then the flashlight dies on you. The good news is that Nitecore does offer a good warranty.
Another potential con is going to be that burst turbo. I wouldn’t even call it a con but I know a lot of users may not be happy with it so I wanted to include it in this list.
Conclusion: Seriously, what a tiny monster this flashlight is. Nitecore comes out with these tiny monster flashlights and they’re always impressive. I’m liking the tactical user interface, the charging capability, and the excellent brightness levels. If you’re looking for an extremely powerful tactical pocket flashlight, look no further than the Nitecore TM9K.