Streamlight TLR-1 HL Review

Posted: January 27, 2014 in Product Reviews
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This is a brief review of the Streamlight TLR-1 HL tactical light.  The HL stands for high-lumen, in this case 630.



The unit is powered by two CR-123 batteries, which are reputed to hold up well with wide temperature variations (more about that later in the review).  The unit comes with several ‘keys’ that product a tight fit to a variety of railed firearms.  The unit comes with the Glock key installed, so I immediately attached the light to my Gen-4 G20.  Perfect fit.


Using the same, out-of-the-box setup, I moved the light to my Sig P227.  Again, a perfect fit.


So far, I’ve put several hundred rounds through the Sig with the light attached and it continues to function perfectly.

I suppose the next question is whether or not 630 lumens is too much illumination?  From a defensive point of view, I’d like to bring as much light as possible to bear on an attacker, especially if it is sufficiently bright to temporarily blind/distract/disorient.  Anything that leads to violent conflict resolution without firing a shot is a winner in my book.

However, if the light is so bright that I’m distracted by reflections or the intensity of the beam on a subject, then it is counter-productive.  To test the TLR-1 HL, I tuned off the TV one night in the apt. and grabbed the empty P227 on the nightstand.  I have light sensitive eyes, so if anyone is going to find a light to be too harsh, it’s probably me.  I turned on the TLR-1 HL and worked the beam around the living-room area.  I really liked the amount of peripheral illumination and did not find the beam to be distracting or disorienting, even off reflective surfaces.  At the same time, I’d definitely not want to look at the directly reflected beam off a big-screen TV or a bathroom mirror 🙂

The light may be either temporarily activated by holding the front switch down or permanently activated by flipping it up.  I found this quite easy to do with my support hand and it can also be accomplished with the trigger finger if for some reason you find that more comfortable.

While the light has held up very well during hundreds of rounds of firing, I was curious about the battery claim regarding temperature fluctuations.  I recently went on a business trip to Houston during a rare ice storm, so I carried the G20 and locked the P227 in the car safe.  I left it in the car overnight, where the temps dropped to well below freezing.

The next morning, the light came on just a reliably as it had every previous attempt.

The final benefit that I’ve realized from this light is that it makes my Dawson Precision fiber-optic sight glow strongly, which makes front-sight acquisition even in low-light situations quite easy.

I will probably order another one of these lights in the near future.

–  Diligencia, Vis, Celeritas


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