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Finding the Best AA Flashlights Money Can Buy – 2018 Edition

Finding the Best AA Flashlights Money Can Buy – 2018 Edition

Having a good flashlight on hand can be a real lifesaver if you ever need to do anything in the dark or the power runs out. They are also useful for camping trips and the like.

I remember dozens of situations where I’d be stranded, or in jeopardy without a flashlight, that’s why I’m here today to help you choose the best aa flashlight money can buy.


Running Time




ThruNite TN4A

Editor's Choice

Medium(139 lumens / 14 hrs)

13.6 ounces


Sofirn SF10

Strobe(270 lumen / 1 hr 42 min)

1.48 ounces


ThruNite Archer

Medium(75 lumen / 5 hours)

2.4 ounces


Fenix TK41C


1.95 pounds


Streamlight 88061

350 lumen/ 1.5 hours

4.8 ounces


Sunwayman V11R Cree XM-L U2

500 lumen/ 1.5 hours

4 ounces


Olight S1A Baton Cree XM-L2


1.29 ounces


Zanflare F2S


2.56 ounces


Nitecore EA41

160 lumen / 12 hr

6 ounces


Coast Polysteel 600

High 710 lumen/ 2 hr 15

1.14 lbs


Why Get an AA Flashlight?

Well, the obvious answer to this question is – so you could see in the dark!

However, all joking aside, having a flashlight on hand can be useful in a wide variety of situations that you might encounter.

Use an AA Flashlight when it's dark

When you’re out in the woods, having a flashlight is extremely useful if you get caught out at night or even during the day if you want to have a better look at something or find yourself in an area with little sunlight.

If you’re camping during the night, they are exceptionally useful.

If you get up to take a leak, for example, or just want to be sure that what you heard in the bushes wasn’t a dangerous wild animal.

Using a flashlight s also beneficial when you don’t want to light a campfire but still want to hang out before going to your tents for a good night’s sleep. Unless you want to use a generator, flashlights are your best bet.

Whatever you might be doing, a flashlight can be incredibly useful and it’s always good to have on hand, just in case.

AA Flashlights vs. AAA Flashlights

AA Battery for flashlight


Now, you might be thinking – why should I get an AA flashlight specifically?

Well, they are, in my opinion, the best choice out there for anyone who doesn’t need a professional-style flashlight.

AA flashlights run on AA batteries, which have more capacity than AAA batteries – one AA battery is as good as 2 or 3 AAA batteries, on average. So, as a result of that, AA flashlights are more powerful and can run for longer before the batteries run out.

However, the cost of them is almost the same as that of AAA flashlights, and you can even use AAA batteries in an AA flashlight if you get an adapter.

The only thing AAA flashlights have going over AA variants is the fact that they are smaller, but that also means they are less powerful and can’t have as many features as AA flashlights.

So, in the end, I think that going for an AA flashlight is the right choice since they are superior in almost every regard.

How to Choose the Right AA Flashlight

When shopping around for a flashlight, there are a few things you should take into account to get the best deal possible. Here are some of them right now

Light Strength

Waterproof Flashlight

You want your flashlight to produce enough light for it to be useful, so this is one of the most important things you ought to consider before buying one.

The amount of light a flashlight can output is usually measured in lumens, and the more lumens a flashlight has, the stronger its light is.

For the most part, having more lumens is better, but if you want a flashlight for a specific use that requires a weaker light, you might want to opt for one with fewer lumens.

Running Time

The running time of a battery-powered flashlight is, in other words, the amount of time it can run before the batteries run out and need to be replaced or recharged.

The longer a flashlight can run the more use you get out of your batteries and the less you have to worry about it dying at inopportune times.


Another important thing to consider is how well a flashlight is constructed and if it will last for a long time. You don’t want to get a piece of kit which will fall apart after a few months of use.

Some flashlights also have extra options for durability, whether it be waterproofing or pressure resistance or something else. All of that can be extremely useful when you’re out in the wild.


The size of a flashlight can be extremely important depending on what you want to use it for. If you need it for work in a tight space, you want a flashlight which can fit in the palm of your hand.

However, if you want something to have while out in the woods, you will probably want a larger flashlight with a wider beam, so you can light up a larger area.

Regardless of what you need, you should carefully consider the size of a flashlight before buying it.


Lastly, it’s important to consider how adjustable a flashlight is. It could fit many different uses if you can adjust the brightness of the beam as well as how focused the beam is.

Flashlights that don’t allow for such adjustments are far less useful than those that do.

Melanie’s Top Ten AA Flashlights

1. ThruNite TN4A - brightest flashlight

ThruNite TN4A


You should buy this flashlight because it is the best one out there that you can get for the money. It comes at a decent price, and it provides incredible brightness.

It can output up to 1150 lumens which is impressive brightness for any flashlight out there. The beam can also reach up to 326 meters, meaning that this is an ideal flashlight for outdoor use since you will be able to see everything when using it.

In addition to all that, ThruNite TN4A is quite a durable little guy, and it won’t break easily. It is also waterproof, meaning that you can use it almost anywhere without any worries about it breaking.

It won’t overheat either since it has an inbuilt automated system to prevent that.

It is also highly adjustable and has a ton of different, useful modes that you can use, including a strobe and a firefly mode.

The turbo mode, while incredibly useful and strong, will drain batteries quite quickly so use it only in a limited capacity and not all the time, if you want to save on battery money.


  • It can be incredibly bright
  • You can easily use it outdoors since it can throw its beam incredibly far
  • This is an incredibly durable and waterproof piece of kit


  • Its turbo mode goes through batteries incredibly quickly
  • You might find it difficult to hold since it is quite bulky and heavy

2. Sofirn SF10 - Budget AA flashlight

Sofirn SP10


You should get this flashlight if, for some reason, you can’t get the one I listed as the best. This is indeed the next best choice and for a variety of reasons.

It reaches a brightness of 573 lumens with ease, and its beam can reach a distance 100 meters or more.

It is also quite a durable flashlight that is resistant to pressure and water, so you won’t have any problems using it anywhere you want. The fact that it is incredibly compact helps a lot.

You can also adjust it to your liking since it has a variety of different modes.


  • It is quite powerful, and the beam can reach a good distance
  • You will find it to be rather durable and it is resistant to water
  • Quite compact and you can carry it anywhere


  • The button is hard to feel at night

3. ThruNite Archer - Reliable AA Flashlight with Cool White

ThruNite Archer


You should get this flashlight if you’re on a slightly tighter budget since it will offer you a ton of quality.

Despite the stereotype associated with lower cost goods, this flashlight is incredibly durable, and it will last for a long time.

It can only output up to 200 lumens, but the beam is incredibly focused, and it is great for working in thigh spaces or lighting up your house during the night.

You will be surprised by how bright it can truly be; enough to blind someone if you need to.

You will also get more savings from it because it is power-efficient and the batteries you put in it will last for a long time.

You might find that it can get quite hot on some of the higher settings and the on switch is difficult to find in the dark, but those are minor problems.


  • The price is quite affordable for the quality it offers
  • It is made from aerospace grade aluminum, making it exceptionally durable
  • You will find it to be quite power-efficient


  • The switch to turn it on is difficult to find in the dark
  • It can get hot on some of the higher settings

4. Fenix TK41C - 8 EdisonBright AA Batteries Flashlight

Fenix TK41C


You should probably get this flashlight if you have money to spare since it is one of the best, even though it is quite costly so not everyone can afford it.

If you can afford it, you will get one of the highest quality products out there.

It can reach an impressive brightness of 1000 lumens, and the beam can reach a distance of a whopping 480 meters. That’s impressive and better than most other products.

It is also durable, made from airplane-grade aluminum, and resistant to water, able to be submerged up to 6.5 feet for up to 30 minutes.

You won’t find it to be too heavy or too bulky, and the only major downside is that the width of the beam is not adjustable so you can’t focus it. Otherwise, it is great, though it costs a lot, both up-front and long-term.


  • It can output bright light with a long beam reach
  • You can adjust it however you like with a lot of different modes
  • You will find it quite durable, and it is supremely waterproof


  • It costs quite a bit of money
  • It requires 8 AA batteries to run, which costs a lot
  • Sadly, you can’t adjust it too much

5. Streamlight 88061 - single aA battery flashlight

Streamlight 88061


You ought to get this single AA flashlight if you don’t want to spend a lot of money on batteries since it uses only one, but it is still quite impressive.

It can output a beam 350 lumen in strength up to a distance of 160 meters. It can run at top power for an hour and a half, even more at lower intensity. You will also find that it has a ton of different useful settings.

You won’t have problems carrying it since it is rather compact and it can fit in any of your pockets. It can also be attached to anything you like, with a handy clip.

It lasts for a long time, and it is waterproof.

The only major problem is that the runtime might be a bit short for people who are used to lights that use more batteries. It can also get hot, but that’s not a problem unless you press it against your skin.


  • It uses only one battery, so it saves you money
  • You can attach it almost anywhere you want
  • You can carry it wherever you wish since it is compact


  • The runtime can be quite short if you’re used to other
  • It can get quite hot on higher settings

6. Sunwayman V11R Cree XM-L U2 - waterproof aA flashlight

Sunwayman V11R Cree XM-L U2


Overall, this is a decent light that is highly adjustable and can output a beam up to 500 lumen in strength. The distance it can cover is not shabby either, it can cast the beam up to 130 meters.

The running time is decent, though nothing exceptional. It can work for 1.5 hours at the highest settings and up to 35 at the lowest. Though using the lower setting won’t be helpful so you will probably use it at the top settings most of the time.

It is quite a durable thing as well and fully waterproof. However, the adjustment ring tends to wear out rather quick and become too loose, so you will have to get that fixed.

This is a highly adjustable light though, so you can set it to your liking. The beam tends to be too wide and inconsistent either way, though.

It also comes with more than a few decent extras, though some are shabby, like the holster. For the price, it’s still quite a good deal.


  • This flashlight is highly adjustable
  • It comes with a lot of good extras
  • Fully waterproof and quite durable


  • The holster is of poor quality and almost useless
  • It seems the adjustment ring wears out quickly
  • The beam is quite wide and can be inconsistent

7. Olight S1A Baton Cree XM-L2 - Lightweight AA Flashlight

Olight S1A Baton Cree XM-L2


The strength of this flashlight doesn’t seem great at first since the strongest mode is only 220 lumens. However, one of the best things about this flashlight is that it can use a rechargeable lithium-ion battery. With that in tow, it can output up to 600 lumens, which is more than decent. Luckily, the rechargeable battery is included.

Despite having a rechargeable battery, it is quite small and compact and can be attached to anything you want.

This is also a highly adjustable light with a strobe option and multiple extremely low light options that other lights don’t have. It also features a timer that can be incredibly handy in certain situations.

Some of the issues with it include the fact that the turbo mode can’t last longer than one minute and the fact that this, sadly, is not a durable light. You might break it on accident. Luckily, it’s not incredibly expensive. It provides more than enough quality for the price.


  • This flashlight can use a rechargeable battery it comes with
  • Highly adjustable with built-in timer
  • Quite a small and compact flashlight


  • The highest turbo mode is limited to one minute
  • The power button is difficult to find in the dark
  • Unfortunately, it lacks in durability

8. Zanflare F2S small tactical flashlight

Zanflare F2S


This is a flashlight that comes at an incredibly low price that pretty much anyone can afford. Of course, that is almost synonymous with a low-quality product, but here that is not the case.

It’s a decent flashlight that is surprisingly durable – save for the lanyard – and can be quite useful.

It is decently adjustable and has some neat features, like a light which indicates the battery levels. You’ll need it, too, since this flashlight simply burns through batteries. You’ll need to spend a lot of cash to keep it running if you’re using it often.

Sadly, it isn’t too bright and can only reach around 200 lumens at best. If you don’t need that much brightness, though, it’s fine and it is a rather compact light anyway.

For the price, this is more than a good product though it leaves a bit to be desired. If case you want a stronger light, look for something else but this is fine for people on a budget.


  • The price is extremely affordable
  • Surprisingly durable for this price and waterproof
  • Adjustable and has a battery level indicator


  • It seems to eat through batteries rapidly
  • Sadly, can’t reach more than 200 lumens
  • The lanyard seems to be of poor quality

9. Nitecore EA41 - The second high lumen AA flashlight

Nitecore EA41


The most outstanding feature of this flashlight is the fact that its beam can be incredibly strong and far-reaching. It can output up to 1020 lumens and reach a distance of 366 yards, something most flashlights can’t boast about.

It can also be adjusted in various different ways and it’s easy to use. Another good thing is that it comes with quite a few good extras, including a diffuser filter.

But, there are still some issues with it. Due to how strong it is, it produces a lot of heat and it doesn’t have good heat dissipation. Because of that, you might get your hand burned if you keep it on for longer than 3 or 4 minutes. Yes, it is that hot.

Another issue is the durability – it is bound to fall apart if you drop it, which is likely due to how large and cumbersome it is to carry, and the aforementioned heat issue.

For the price, it is a bit lacking despite its strength.


  • The brightness and reach of this light is outstanding
  • It has a lot of different useful adjustments
  • Comes with a lot of good extra


  • The durability is poor and the flashlight is cumbersome and heavy
  • For what it does, it seems to be a bit overpriced
  • Heat dissipation is quite bad and it might burn you

10. Coast Polysteel 600 - great tactical flashlight

Coast Polysteel 600


This flashlight may not be the strongest, but it is still quite a decent one. The light output can range from 73 up to 710 lumens, which is quite strong. The beam can also reach a distance of 247 meters, which is no small feat.

Overall, this is also quite a durable flashlight despite being decently priced – not too cheap but also not expensive. It has one issue, though, and that’s the fact that it claims to be waterproof even though it isn’t and water will ruin it. Be wary of that.

Another issue with it is that it won’t take rechargeable batteries, which is a weird omission and it might cost you a lot over time.

The settings it has are also limited and surprisingly stiff. It might difficult to change them with one hand and your fingers might be hurt in the process. There’s not obvious reason for that and it’s just a bother.

So, this is a decent flashlight if you can overlook a few key issues that it has.


  • It has quite a strong light and it can reach a good distance
  • The durability is more than decent
  • It comes at quite a fair price point


  • Sadly, it doesn’t seem compatible with rechargeable AA batteries 
  • Claims to be waterproof but it isn’t
  • Changing the settings is difficult since the switches are stiff

My Choice

The best AA flashlight I could find is most certainly the ThruNite TN4A.

ThruNite TN4A CW 1150 Lumen Single CREE XP-L V6 LED Flashlight Powered by 4 AA Batteries, Cool White
  • The latest CREE XPL-V6 LED gives great light efficiency and makes output up to 1150 lumens.
  • The economical and readily available AA battery makes TN4A a better choice for you to use everywhere.
  • Ultra clear tempered glass lens with anti-reflective coating; and durable resistance and waterproof materials for use in extreme conditions.
  • Adopts ITC (Intelligent Temperature Control) technology to effectively prevent the TN4A from overheating and thus extend its lifespan.
  • Advanced electronic switch with low voltage indication for silent operation.

Last update on 2018-03-08 PST - Details

It has great features, one of the strongest beams out of any AA flashlight out there, stronger than any other on offer here and it will last for a long time.

In addition to that, it comes at a fair price, better than most other similar flashlights – for example, the comparable Streamlight 88061 flashlight is more than double the price. Because of all that I consider the TruNite TN4A to be the best AA flashlight your money can buy right now.

Finding the Best AA Flashlights Money Can Buy – 2018 Edition
5 (100%) 4 votes
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I am Melanie Campbell, an outdoor and professional camping enthusiast that will give you the best expert advice when it comes to camping and outdoor trekking. I’m here to give you expert advice and proven tips on how to make the most out of your camping adventure.

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