Nitecore MT26 CREE XM-L Flashlight Review

The Nitecore MT26 CREE XM-L Flashlight is indeed a black flashlight that can accomplish a multitude of tasks with its 750-lumen LED. It indeed lives up to its name and specs in more ways than one.

It’s a light that’s powered by one 18650 battery or two CR123 batteries. It also offers multiple modes such as strobe. It even includes crenelated bezel and has loads of lumens. The main claim to fame that Nitecore has is it is cost-effective and offers more lumens per dollar compared to other torchlight brands.

What’s more, the NitecoreMT26 is also defined by its fine machining. You won’t get any exposed surfaces on it that could damage your hands and your grip. It’s quite ergonomic. This is a light that’s specifically designed for everyday carry applications for sure.

wide orange41o8CHOt5sLNo Rough Edges on This Diamond

Rather than be a diamond in the rough, the Nitecore MT26 is arguably a finely cut diamond from the get go with its lack of burrs or rough edges. It’s also quite sturdy, which means it can survive rugged outdoor usage or army or military applications, camping, hunting, firefighter assistance, security detail, police work or law enforcement, and during emergencies.

When you take the flashlight apart, it ends up into three pieces and it doesn’t cross-thread. The motion is smooth, with the tail section much tighter than its head. You’ll get an ergonomic grip on this flashlight thanks to the checkering on its tail and body where your fingers go to grip the device. The light fits into your hand like a glove and it blasts the brightest of lights for about an hour and 40 minutes with CR123 batteries and 2 hours with a 18650 specialty lithium battery.

Tactical Ring and Size-to-Performance Ratio

The light of the Nitecore MT26 is already quite large, but you can make it larger by using the tactical ring, turning it into a handheld floodlight of sorts. This torch is also dependable because of its size-to-performance ratio. Just as it’s cost-effective in the sense that you’ll get more out of your money thanks to the overall quality of the flashlight, the tool is also beneficial in terms of how its smallness doesn’t detract from the bigness of the light coming out of it.

It’s a lot more mobile, storable, and pocket-sized than most lights but it doesn’t detract in the least in terms of its light output. At six inches long and 1.25 inches thick at its thicker end, it’s smaller than the average torch. Nevertheless, it produces 750-800 lumens of brightness.

Nitecore MT26 Specifications

  • Weighs 4.6 ounces
  • Batteries sold separately
  • 4 brightness levels plus SOS and Strobe modes
  • Maximum brightness output is 750-800 lumens
  • Black MT26NCMT26 flashlight that’s made in China
  • Requires one 18650 battery or two CR123 batteries
  • Uses a long-lasting premium CREE XM-L U2 LEDthat can work for years
  • 9 inches by 1.3 inches by 1.3 inches in terms of dimensions (almost 6 inches)
  • Quality machining, packaging, operation, crenelated bezel, and ergonomic feel
  • A battery-powered flashlight made of aerospace-grade or aircraft-grade aluminum

wide orangeNitecore MT26 Reviews

The customers who’ve reviewed this flashlight favorably are well-versed flashlight owners who’ve had extensive experience in using high-end flashlights as opposed to disposable ones you usually get at the counter of a grocery store along with packets of AA batteries. This is the kind of light one would avail of if they wish to get an upgrade and acquire a “nicer” light of sorts.

This cost-effective light is every bit as bright if not brighter than its more expensive counterparts, especially when considering its size. It outdoes every flashlight that’s similarly sized as it is and it’s about 95% to 97% as bright as some bigger top-of-the-line lights. This is why I’ve decided to give this flashlight a 9.5 over 10 rating.

Things to Improve

The Nitecore MT26 isn’t necessarily a perfect light for sure. It does have a plateau in output typical of a Chinese-made flashlight. It’s better than so-called Chinese knockoffs for sure but as a standalone torch capable of 800 lumens, you can avail of better. To wit, saying that something is better than expected doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best.

It just surprised you because of your lowered expectations. The Nitecore MT26 needs improvement when it comes to tiny dark circle at the center of its otherwise tight and concentrated light beam. You can save money buying even cheaper flashlights and using them together versus this middle of the ground flashlight if you wish to save money.


Despite its faults, the worse that you can say about the Nitecore MT26 is that it’s mediocre edging towards okay and serviceable. You can never accuse it of being terrible. Also, the truth remains that flashlight and torchlight connoisseurs all agree in this mighty mite’s merits in terms of being intensely bright for a device its size and having a good range, reach, and concentration.

The short of it is that you can slap on the name of a more expensive flashlight and charge thrice its worth and no one would bat an eye. It’s that good. In any case, do check out some of the other top-notch 18650 flashlights here.

wide orange