Up for review is Fenix’s TK11 TAC “Tactical Flashlight”. Its a mid-size light with 1,600 lumens and 335 meters of throw. This 4-mode light is all wrapped up in tail switch activated package, with a nifty rotating ring to control “Tactical” & “Duty” modes. Have a look below at my thoughts!
Product Link: FenixLighting.com
*Note: The High mode is thermal regulated and will decrease output to preserve the life of the LED as heat is generated. Therefore, do not expect 2 Hours of 1,600 Lumens.
The TK11 TAC is a tail-cap switch only light that introduces a rotating ring for mode selection and light lock-out. The light has two modes, Tactical Mode & Duty Mode. The ring and switch have a nice tactile feel to them. While not silent, they are relatively quiet, and both remind me of a mechanical keyboard key click.
To set the light to Tactical Mode, rotate the outer ring to the far right. Tactical mode provides users with instant access to High mode by either half-pressing the switch for momentary access or fully depressing and releasing the switch for constant access.Tactical Mode
To set the light to Duty Mode, rotate the outer ring to the far left. Duty mode allows users to cycle through the low, medium, and high modes. The light has mode memory, so when you half-press the switch, you get momentary access to the last mode you used. The same happens if you fully depress the switch and release it, the light will constantly illuminate the last mode you used. To cycle through the modes, once the light is constantly on, half press the switch to cycle thru Low -> Medium -> High -> Low.Duty Mode
To turn the light off from constant on, just fully depress the switch and release it.
Regardless of which mode you are in, you have access to strobe mode by pressing and holding the switch for 0.8 seconds as long as the light is not locked out.
Speaking of locking the light out, you can set the rotating ring to its middle position and the light will not turn on. It seems like a mechanical switch lockout as you can no longer depress the tail-cap switch at all. Interesting enough, you can also lock the light on. You can also lock this light out by loosening the tail-cap a quarter turn.Lock Out Mode
Fenix does not include a battery with this light. Therefore, you will need to grab one if you don’t have one already. Fenix recommends their ARB-L18 series of batteries in the TK11 TAC. It’s their line of 18650 Lithium-Ion rechargeable batteries. I have a Fenix ARB-L18-3500U 3,500 mAh 3.6v 12.6 Wh Micro-USB Rechargeable Lithium-Ion Battery on hand and used that to test the light. The TK11 TAC does not have any onboard charging capabilities either. Keep this in mind when you go to purchase a battery. Make sure you get one you can recharge.
The manual documents several battery compatibilities options. Of course, as I said above, they recommend the Fenix ARB-L18 series of batteries, but they also list support for non-rechargeable CR123A lithium batteries. I also successfully used an LG button top unprotected 18650 cell without any issues.
The TK11 TAC has a removable tail cap, and the battery is inserted positive end first into the body of the light. Or in other words, the positive end towards the primary led on the light. The tail cap has a single spring, and the positive terminal is also a spring. This provides some shock absorption for the battery and enables the light to stay lit should you drop or bounce the light.
Should your TK11 TAC become low on battery power, higher modes may not be available and only low mode may be accessible. Additionally, the main LED will flash 3 times every 5 minutes to commutate the low battery level to you. This is similar behavior on the LD32 UVC that I tested. It works well, but i do wish there was a way to see what your current battery level is.
Since the TK11 TAC does not come with a battery, I used one I had on hand from another Fenix light. I fully charged the Fenix ARB-L18-3500U with its onboard Micro-USB charging circuit and used my Illuminating Shoebox for the runtime test.
As mentioned above, the TK11 TAC has thermal protection or as Fenix calls it, “Intelligent Overheat Protection”. The output will reduce to protect the light from self-destruction. Per the manual, the Intelligent Overheat Protection is described as: When the light reaches a temperature of 60°C or above, the light will automatically step down a few lumens to reduce the temperature. When the temperature drops below 60°C, it will then allow the user for the re-selection of High mode.
Where thermal regulation is usually very noticeable drop in output from most lights, this TK11 TAC differs greatly. In fact, this light maintains greater than 95% of the listed output for nearly almost 9 minutes! In my opinion, 9 minutes of ~1,600 lumens is awesome! After that 9 minutes of near 1,600 lumens, the light starts to drop output to between 40% and 50% until is drop below 40% after nearly 90 minutes. Overall runtime on this light is about 400 minutes with some level of output in my test. Take a look at the runtime chart to see how the output drops over time.
The TK11 TAC is paired with an Luminus SST40 “L4” LED which is very much a cool white beam color in the chip that they picked. I could not find much information on the “L4” variant of the SST40. It is on par with most Olight’s cool/cold white lights. In my opinion, the output is way too cool. The TK11 TAC provides users with 1,600 lumens on high with a maximum beam distance of 335 meters.
It includes a deep smooth reflector and clear glass lens to produce all that throw. Up close, you get a well pronounced hot spot.
Take a look at the photos below!
Outdoor Photos – Fixed Exposure (1/20s ISO 500)
Outdoor Photos – Automatic Exposure
Indoor Photos – Fixed Exposure (1/60s ISO 25)
Indoor Photo – Automatic Exposure
Similar to the other Fenix lights I’ve been able to review, the TK11 TAC is machined out of A6061-T6 aluminum and coated with a black hard-anodized finish for durability. The finish seems to be quite durable. The tail cap separates from the flashlight body for battery insertion
It appears that it’s a 4-piece body with a section contains the reflector with another transition piece to the body tube will come apart from the flashlight head, but it seems to be glued, and finally the tail cap. Fenix advises against disassembly; however it does look like it is possible if you have the right motivation to modify the light
Due to the nature of the tail-cap switch, this light will not tail-stand. It does have a nicely machined bezel that when placed face down will project some light out for you.
There is no lanyard hole machined into the body of the light, but there is space on the pocket clip.
Fenix offers a five-year warranty on the TK11 TAC Within the first 15 days, Fenix will replace the product with identical or equivalent products. Fenix will repair the light free of charge for up to 5 years. Post 5 years, Fenix will charge for the parts to repair the light. You are able to extend this warranty by 6-months if you register the light on fenixlight.com. The pocket clip, small accessories, and lanyard are covered by a 1-year warranty
Fenix really knocked it out of the park with this one. I am very impressed with the high mode sustained output, perhaps thats what makes me like this one the best. But the combination of nice throw, brightness, and overall battery life impress me. Dual springs for the battery is also nice. The new tail-cap design is innovative and I hope to see it on more lights. The wide head still fits in the included belt holster quite well!
Perhaps, the one thing I’m not in love with is the terribly cool LED. If this had a bit warmer or natural LED, it might edge it even more in the favorable review. If you can catch this one on sale, it’s worth a pickup.
I want to thank FenixLighting.com for letting me have a look at this light! While they provided the light to me for evaluation, it does not influence my personal opinion. Additionally, I was not compensated in any other way for this review. This review and all of my reviews are my own thoughts and opinions gathered after carry and/or use of the light/product.