Rechargeable 21700 Flashlight Review – Nitecore NM02

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I came across an interesting compact flashlight that would be fun to take a look at. It runs on a 21700 battery, is rechargeable, and is the perfect everyday carry flashlight. Today I’m reviewing the Nitecore NM02 EDC light. I’ll go over all of its features and tell you my overall opinion of the flashlight. So let’s get started.

2700 Lumen LED Flashlight

This light is very compact, less than 5 inches in length. It has a removable two-way pocket clip, perfect for everyday carry. It delivers 2700 lumens, an amazing amount of light for such a small flashlight. It features four Cree XP-G3 S3 LEDs that help deliver the 2700 lumen power. With this light, you’re going to see a very wide beam. There’s really not much of a hotspot with this Nitecore light. Personally, I find this beam great for everyday carry.

I also really like the design of the flashlight. Nitecore definitely makes some amazing LED flashlights. It has a nice strike bezel to it that’s not too big so you can comfortably put it in your pocket. It does have some heat dissipation fins which surprised me. Normally with everyday carry flashlights we don’t always see the dissipation fins. With brighter flashlights you definitely want those fins because it’s going to help prevent the flashlight from heating up too quickly.

Micro USB Rechargeable EDC Flashlight

rechargeable led flashlight

This flashlight is micro USB rechargeable. You can find the micro USB port on the tail of the light and next to it is the charging indicator and that doubles as a battery power indicator as. The micro USB port does have inner waterproofing which is awesome. The rubber cover will seal the micro USB port entirely to protect it from water and dust, but it’s good to know that the port itself is waterproof just in case the cover is not completely sealed on the light.

While the light is charging, the blue indicator will flash slowly to indicate that it’s charging. The indicator will have a constant glow to let you know the battery is finished charging. A cool aspect of this light is that you can access the three lowest brightness levels while the light is charging. This means that if you take this EDC light camping and you’re out of batteries but you have a power bank, just plug in the NM02 and you can still have a working flashlight.

The NM02 pocket flashlight has a built-in 21700 battery that cannot be removed as far as I can see. I don’t typically like built-in batteries and I’m a little surprised that they made this flashlight with a built-in battery. There are many other 21700 flashlights that run on 18650s and even CR123s. So it’s interesting that Nitecore chose to put a built-in battery with this light. The battery could be considered a negative aspect of this light. If you don’t like messing with batteries and you just want a flashlight, a built-in battery is great.

21700 flashlight nitecore nm02

Operating the Nitecore NM02 Flashlight

This Nitecore light is very simple to operate. It has one tail switch that you long press to turn it on. It’s always going to turn onto the lowest brightness level. From there, you regularly tap the tail switch to cycle through the brightness levels starting from the lowest mode and working its way up. Then another long press to turn the flashlight off. There is a shortcut to turbo, but it’s definitely not instant. To get to the turbo mode you can hold the tail switch down for 3 seconds. It’s a little bit quicker than cycling through the brightness levels yourself to get to the turbo, but not as instant as I would like it to be. 

There’s also no memory mode on this light which is really quite surprising. I prefer my everyday carry flashlights to have a memory mode. However, I like that the NM02 starts in the lowest brightness level when you turn the flashlight on.

I quickly want to touch on the power indicator because I think it’s really cool. So when you first turn the flashlight on the indicator will flash 3 times if the battery level is above 50%, twice when the battery level is below 50%, and once when the power level is below 10%. While the light is on and once the battery power reaches about 50%, the indicator will flash every 2 seconds to let you know where the battery is at. So if you see rapid blinking, it’s time to charge your flashlight.

bright led flashlight nitecore nm02

Multiple Outputs on the Nitecore NM02 Flashlight

The NM02 EDC light features 5 total brightness levels. It doesn’t have any flashing mode so you don’t have a strobe or an SOS. It seems like Nitecore paired down this flashlight’s features which depending on how you feel about it, could be a good thing or a bad thing. 

With the brightness levels, you have turbo at 2700 lumens, high at 1250 lumens, mid at 240 lumens, low at them 75 lumens, and ultra low at 5 lumens. I’m very impressed with the 2700 lumens and the 1250 lumens. With the way the beam pattern is, it looks insanely bright, way brighter than you would expect. I really like that the ultra low is 5 lumens. I like having an ultra low or moonlight mode with any everyday carry flashlight, even though it’s not always necessary.

The flashlight has temperature regulation which means that once it starts heating up, it’ll drop down in output to protect the internal components of the flashlight. But this being the case, the 2700 lumens isn’t going to last too long. Of course, that depends on what environment you use the LED flashlight in. You’re going to be seeing longer run times in cooler environments. 

Nitecore states the turbo mode lasts 45 minutes and they actually specify on the box that they did test the turbo mode without the temperature regulation. I applaud Nitecore for putting this on the box so you know that you’re not going to be single full 45 minute run time using the turbo mode due to the temperature regulation. 

Durable EDC Light

pocket flashlight nitecore nm02

Just like any Nitecore flashlight, the NM02 is extremely rugged and durable. It’s got the aluminum alloy body you would expect from a high quality LED flashlight. It’s IPX8 rated waterproof which means you can submerge it in 2 meters of water for up to half an hour and it’ll be fine. You never know when you’re going to use your light in the rain so it’s just a good thing to know that your flashlight is waterproof.

Final Thoughts on the Nitecore NM02 Everyday Carry Flashlight

Pros: The size and design of the NM02 flashlight is great. The NM02 is certainly a very impressive and powerful flashlight with a great floody beam. The user interface is simple and doesn’t really require much of a learning curve. 

I also really like the power indicator on this light. With many lights, the power indicator only turns on when the light is first turned on. After a couple of seconds, the indicator turns off. So if you’re using a flashlight for a long time, it can be a little tough to determine what the battery level is at. With the indicator flashing every couple seconds once the battery is about 50% on the NM02, you’ll know when it’s time to charge the battery

Cons: There are few cons with this flashlight. First, it comes with a built-in battery. Unfortunately, this means that if the battery is bad, the light is bad which is why a lot of users prefer not to use built-in batteries. However, I know some users don’t really mind and Nitecore has a very good warranty. 

I also would have liked to see a memory mode on this flashlight. I think a memory mode is useful for everyday carry flashlights and outdoor flashlights. Finally, I would like this flashlight to be USB-C rechargeable. USB-C charges faster which is ideal for 21700 flashlights.

Conclusion: Due to the fact that it doesn’t have a strobe and doesn’t really have an instant turbo, I wouldn’t classify the NM02 as tactical. Despite the fact that it looks very tactical with the overall design and that strike bezel. Nevertheless, the NM02 makes an excellent everyday carry flashlight. It has a great user interface, it’s really powerful, has good features, and an excellent beam for any up close work. Make sure to check out the Nitecore NM02 rechargeable everyday carry flashlight.

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