Maglite Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

For the first time ever I’m not going to recommend a product, not even a little bit. Maglite was awesome enough to send me two flashlights to review. The Maglite Magcharger rechargeable LED was amazing, and you can read the review here.

However, the Magtac LED rechargeable tactical flashlight is anything but.

Make the jump to check out the review.

Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

Initial impression

I really wanted to like the Magtac, it’s a great size, super bright, recharges quickly and is built like a tank.

This small torch pumps out 543 lumens on its highest setting with a run time of 2.5 hours,  is only 5.81 inches long and only weighs 5.5 ounces with the rechargeable battery installed.

The Maglite Magtac comes in a small box packed into foam to keep it safe.

Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

Included in the box are the Maglite Magtac itself, the pocket clip, car and home charger, mounting screw, and clip tightener.

Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

The crowned lens cap and tail cap are removable by twisting them off.

Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

Installing the pocket clip is simple, just unscrew the tail cap and slide the pocket clip all the way down the handle until it hits the knurled section of the flashlight. Then use the provided tightener to turn the pocket clip screw a 1/4 inch and you are good to go!

Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

My initial impression of the Maglite Magtac was that it is a hefty, solid, tool built for ease of use during operation. It has a “clicky” operation on the end of the tail cap allowing you to quickly rotate through the different lighting options, and the pocket clip let’s you carry it in a multitude of ways. I carried mine on my right leg side pockets, also known as the third pocket occasionally.

Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

I also particularly liked how the pocket clip is designed. There is a perfect spot to put your pinky finger to really lock in your grip.The Magtac is going nowhere!

Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

The Bad

Here is where the good stuff ends. There is a fundamental flaw in the Magtac(or atleast my sample unit) that cannot be overlooked and ruins any chance of it being anything other than a paperweight.

The supposed 2.5 hour runtime on high only lasts one hour. 

I ran this test 5 different times, using both the car and home charger. Not once did the battery last more than an hour. Many times it wouldn’t even last 20 minutes on high before switching automatically to low for the last 40 minutes.

While the battery was working, this light is a powerhouse for such a small package. However, due to the substandard lifespan I never used it to inspect any attics, basements, or crawlspaces during my day job. I couldn’t risk having it die and leaving me stranded in the dark.

I contacted Maglite’s customer service and spoke to one of their higher ups who told me that the Magtac rechargeable LED should be lasting 2.5 hours. He had me send it back in to them with a promise to send me out a new one.

I sent my sample model back in over a month ago, and haven’t received a new one yet. I also called and left a voicemail for that person two weeks ago and haven’t heard anything back. The only conclusion I can draw is that my unit wasn’t defective, and that is just how the Magtac Rechargeable flashlight works.

I hope to be proven wrong(!) and I hope Maglite sends me a working model, but until that time if you are thinking of purchasing the Maglite Magtac rechargeable flashlight I would consider looking at a different model, or a different brand for that style of flashlight.

It’s a shame too, because it was one of the most ergonomic flashlights I’ve ever used. While working, it might be second to none in that price range.


  1. VaqueroJustice says:

    Are we going to have a “the truth about flashlights” now ?

    Really ?

    Cus I’m perfectly ok with that.

    Lights need love too.

    1. It ties into the whole EDC culture. It was a suggestion from a reader that led me to get several single-aaa Thrunites for my keychains.

      I do recognize the jesting in your post, but I thought I would give it a straight answer.

      The other thing is the whole porting Jake’s relevant posts over from Rugged American Gear. Running the occasional repost from RAG gives me a much needed night off now and again.
      To be perfectly honest…

  2. MG says:


  3. borg says:

    The fact that the run time is not as advertised may be an obvious example of false advertising assuming it was not defective. Also since the reviewer sent it back over a month ago and not receiving any replacement or further response to communication it would appear to be more likely to be false advertising. If it is defective and gets replaced, the fact that it takes them more than a month to replace and their lack of responsiveness show how poor their customer service is.

  4. Julio César says:

    hi man , i have several doubts hope yo can help to solve, i just bougth the cr123 magtac, because the easy way of just change the batery, but theres was a problem whit maglite, and they send me a rechargeable instead the cr123 by the same price by the way , which is better cr123 or rechargeable, its better to stay whit the rechargeable or returned to maglite to send me the cr123 model? i see a lot of reviews of the magtac rechargeable, bad batery, not charge, things like that but also read and see a lot of reviews that this is a great lamp, can you help whit this issues

  5. Thorsten Romstädt says:

    Well, together with a lot of other models from Mag Lite (including the “normal” Mag Tac) I have a Mag Tac Rechargeable. First of all, it is the least reliable Mag Lite I have. And second – I like it. How so?

    Well, when it is running the light is superb. The beam is broad and smooth, a nightly walk with the dog in the forest is fun. Normally I use the low beam, the high beam only for moments. I experienced the loss of the high beam after about 20 minutes. However: this is not caused by the battery!

    Being in electronics I wanted to know what goes on here. Unscrewing and rescrewing the tailcap mened the problem – for some time. The culprit obviously are the contacts that connect to the battery. Using a bit of contact cleaner, feathering the contacts and cleaning them with compressed air helped. My Mag Tac rechargeable now does not longer switch to low output by itself. The agressive reduction of the light of course is still there. But the light is designed that way and I knew it before.

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Maglite Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

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