3 reasons to carry the Pelican 7600 flashlight
The Pelican 7600 is a dual-powered patrol light with an ideal beam in a form factor suited for police officer use
I’m a flashlight snob. If I like a light product, it had better be good.
I didn’t become a flashlight snob by accident. I drew the short straw after a pursuit and ended up crawling under a house looking for a suspect. Halfway through the mission, my flashlight failed. I am a “press check” kind of guy, and I also carry a spare. I got the bad guy.
I tested the Pelican 7600, a compact, machined-aluminum, self-programmable, multi-color LED flashlight. My tests suggest that the Pelican 7600 may be a top patrol light choice for police officers today.
If you’re one of those readers who skim through product reviews to find the three reasons, I’ll give them to you up front. After that, you’ll want to read the whole review and then try the product yourself. The Pelican 7600:
1. Is dual-powered.
2. Has a usable form factor.
3. Has an ideal beam (or three) for patrol.
Pelican 7600 specs
The 7600 is 6.19 inches long and 1.3 inches in diameter. Rather than designing a straight textured tube like most products in the industry, this light has a switch assembly and a bezel that makes it thicker on the ends. Without aggressive texturing, this torch gives the user a positive grip and is easy to orient without looking at it.
The 7600’s brightest output is 944 lumens (12,693 candela). The medium and low settings are 479 and 37 lumens respectively.
More important, the beam has a reassuring bright center and generous spillbeam. It uses a textured reflector that throws a flood beam without hard edges.
The beam is consistent in brightness and concentric to the body of the light, with no hot spots or “bad doughnuts.” This is a good thing, as the two LED emitters fire through the same reflector.
The 7600 is IPX8, making it fully submersible, which is no surprise as Pelican is a company known for rugged equipment. The part that is a surprise is that it has a rotating ring switch in the bezel, a hard piece of engineering to make submersible.
Pelican 7600 field use
The 7600 body design affords a non-slip grip that makes it easy to keep this flashlight in hand during a foot pursuit or if an officer is suddenly engaged in close-quarters combat. It is a great size for stuffing under the arm for reloads and writing citations.
For night ops, the thumb stays near the switch, while enough of the head protrudes from the front to put the emitter forward of the trigger, instead of alongside of it, for Harries technique users.
The 7600 is programmable by pressing the momentary tail switch a prescribed number of times. Mine came in the default mode, which is high/strobe/medium/low when I use the momentary switch in sequence. I like this mode because it starts with high, and then a second press gives me a strobe. The other programming options include high only and a low beam on the initial tail switch press.
With the default programming, a startle response on the thumb switch goes from the bright beam to the strobe, which is exactly what I want. It is simple to cycle through the options to get to the lowest setting. It’s a little brighter than other low beams from similar products, but the bonus is having red and green settings. The red and green settings don’t dim or strobe, which is fine by me.
The thumb switch is click on. Momentary is a half press, click on is a full press. The switch is recessed enough to prevent accidental activation. It has a textured rubber cover and a positive feel.
The switch goes from white light to red and then green. These LEDs fire through the reflector and, although the purpose is for preserving night vision and illuminating evidence, they are pretty bright auxiliary LEDs.
The red is good for preserving night vision. The green LED did a great job increasing contrast for certain things. It’s not exactly a forensic light source, but it will work for an initial sweep at the patrol level. Hunters use green because many animals don’t see, or are indifferent to, green light.
Pelican 7600 battery life
The battery life is a little better than average for the light output. It was designed for an entire shift. The lowest light output setting will go 29 hours with the rechargeable battery cell.
Pelican uses a high quality 2600MAh lithium-ion cell seated solidly in the body. Dropping this light from 4 feet onto concrete did not interrupt the beam or damage the lens, even with a direct hit.
The fourth position of the rotating ring exposes the USB charging port. One downside is it takes five hours to charge the 18650 cell. Pelican has an answer for that too. First, it uses standard USB charging, not some proprietary, hard-to-replace fixture. Second, the light comes with an adapter to insert (and store) two CR123 cells.
The Pelican 7600 is definitely a product that can be sworn in any time.