Nitecore TM16: 4xXM-L2, 700 meters, 4x18500, max. 4000 lumens, (beam)shots, compare

kj75

Enlightened
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Sep 10, 2012
Messages
892
Location
The Netherlands
For me, this latest Tiny Monster-member came as a surprise. From the first day I was impressed by the looks of light and the impressive output combined with huge throw. So far I know, this is the first 4000 lumen stock light that should reach up to 700 meters distance. So, highest time to have a closer look at the TM16!

Nitecore TM16, the latest Monster-series member
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powered by four XM-L2(U2) leds
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a handheld searchlight
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So let’s start, as usual, with the manufacturer specs:

Features:

· Utilizes 4 CREE XM-L2 U2 LEDs
· Maximum output up to 4000 lumens
· Features advanced temperature regulation (ATR) technology
· Boasts a peak beam intensity of 122,500cd and a throw distance up to 700 meters
· Dual-switch user interface ensures one-handed easy operation
· Features 5 brightness levels and 3 special modes
· High efficiency circuit board provides max runtime up to 520 hours
· Integrated power indicator light displays remaining battery power (patented)
· Power indicator’s secondary function displays battery voltage (accurate to 0.1V)
· Direct access to ultra-low or turbo ensures flexibility and convenience
· Reverse polarity protection prevents damage from incorrectly inserted batteries
· Stainless steel retaining ring protects the core components from damage
· Rear tripod connector brings extra funtionality
· Toughened ultra-clear mineral glass with anti-reflective coating
· Constructed from aerograde aluminum alloy
· Sturdy HAIII military grade hard-anodized
· Waterproof in accordance with IPX-8 (two meters submersible)
· Impact resistant to 1.5 meters
· Tail stand capability

Dimensions:

· Length: 7.17” / 182mm
· Head diameter: 3.5” / 89mm
· Tube: 2.09/ 53mm
· Weight: 17.85oz / 506gram (without battery)

And the output specs:
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Unboxing:

Like the other TM-series, Nitecore brings the TM16 in a brown carton without frills. It seems like the most impressive light come in a simply box… Only thing we see is a stickers with the most importants specs mentioned on it. But, this box is sturdy enough to protect the light against damage and to store it when it’s not used. Inside we find protecting foam, of course the light, a lanyard, warranty card, spare o-rings, holster and user manual. Overall, not a spectacular box, but, let’s say, the quality is inside :)

a sturdy box without frills
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good protection against damage
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contents the light, manual, warranty card, spare o-rings and lanyard. A holster is missing
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Impressions:

First impression: Really a monster, but do we call this “tiny”? This light really impresses! A big head with deeper reflectors and nice proportions make this light a successful creation. The TM16 feels a bit heavy, but is easy to handle and easy to control with one hand. The light has a clean reflector and perfect centered leds. Machining is well done, anodizing is good except some chips, mainly at the light edges. The threads are lubed sufficient and run smoothly. The light has a good anti-roll design and tailstand is, as expected, no problem. Handy feature and actually a trend: the TM16 can be mounted on a (bigger) tripod. Inside the TM16 is looks ok: Good finishing, clear marks how to insert the cells and gold plated, sturdy springs. Clear marks in the tailcap too: It’s almost impossible to insert the cells the wrong way. Overall, a well-built, high quality “big-Tiny”. Please scroll down for more impression, told by pictures…

TM16, after the TM36 (Lite) the biggest Tiny Nitecore has produced ever
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this handheld searchlight has good proportions
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deep reflectors and four XM-L2 (U2) leds: a lot of output guaranteed!
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easy to handle with, easy one-hand operation
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steady (tail)standing
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deep cooling-fins and a good anti-roll design
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the tailcap with built-in tripod hole
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together with a TM brother: who’s real tiny?
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with recommended cells
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overall, a good job on anodizing
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impressive specifications
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perfect centered XM-L2 (U2)’s
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deep, clean reflectors and XM-L2’s will give the TM16 a lot of throw
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well machined and lubed threads
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a look inside the tailcap
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and a look into the tube
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please mind this!
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built-in voltage indicator, can also be used to locate the light
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tripod mounting, hands free lighting up a complete area
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compact, but great performance
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thanks to this four leds
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good machining, as usual
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with added lanyard, a holster is missing
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User interface:

It’s no problem to control the TM16 by only using your thumb. The light has two buttons, one for on/off and one for mode selection. They are, in contrast to the EC4, separated by a notch instead of an edge. Those big buttons are easy to locate in darkness, and if needed, you can activate the “standby-beacon”: one flash per three second will tell you the buttons’ exact location. Simply press the power button (below one) to turn the TM16 on, after that select the desired mode by using the upper button. The light memorizes the last used mode, except the three special. Press and hold the power button while shutting off to activate standby-beacon. With the light on, press and hold to enter the special modes, starting with strobe. In strobe mode, you can cycle through the special by short pressing the mode-button. The TM16 has also three instant modes: With the light off, press and hold the on/off button to enter LOWER, or press and hold the upper button to enter TURBO. Quick double-press the mode button to enter instant STROBE. Personally, I love this modes, and have used them often.

The illuminated button has also another nice feature: A voltage indicator. There are two ways to check the actual voltage: A quick check by short pressing the mode button while the light is off. The button will flash up to three times: One time means critical, two below 50% and three above 50%. Second way to check is to unscrew the tailcap and tighten again. The indicator will tell you accurate to 0.1 volts about the actual voltage. Personally I prefer the “accurate-way”. Hope Nitecore will fix this in the future. Summarized: A good interface, despite of the bigger dimension this light is easy to control by using one hand/thumb. Again here, a lot of modes and option, so Nitecore did a good job here!

Modes:

The TM16 has in total five normal modes: starting with LOWER > LOW > MID > HIGH > TURBO. I should really like when you could cycle up and down through the modes, but this isn’t possible. The special modes are: STROBE > LOCATION BEACON > SOS. Enough modes for most situations. Also three special modes at the TM16: INSTANT LOWER > INSTANT TURBO > INSTANT STROBE. The light has also a lockout mode: Press and hold both buttons (when the light is off) for more than one second to enter this. Same way to activate the light again. Personally I’d like to have a lockout by unscrewing the tailcap too. It won’t be a surprise that the TM16 doesn’t have momentary on.

ATR:

Nitecore has built in Advance Temperature Regulation. This means: When the light gets overheated (mostly while using turbo a longer time) the output will decrease dynamically to prevent against damage. This means that the light will not step down from (for example TURBO to HIGH), but turbo will go on with less output.

Size comparison:

To show the TM16’s dimensions, a comparison side by side with some other lights in the same lumen class: the Fenix LD75C, Eagtac MX25L4C, and another Nitecore Monster: the TM06

18650 cell, Nitecore TM16, Fenix LD75C, Eagtac MX25L4C and Nitecore TM06
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Nitecore TM16, Fenix LD75C, Eagtac MX25L4C and Nitecore TM06
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Nitecore TM16, Fenix LD75C, Eagtac MX25L4C and Nitecore TM06
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all driven by four leds, but big difference in head diameter
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and a look at the tails
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Tint:

The TM16 has the same tint like most recent XM-L2 (U2) Nitecores: good coolwhite tint with a little green. I’ve compared the light to the Eagtac MX25L4C and the Fenix LD75C.

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Beamprofile:

Thanks to the four, rather deep reflectors this light has an intense hotspot but also a big corona en a lot of spill. It’s not as floody as its TM06 brother, but this is a really nice, mixed beam that is ideal for search jobs. It’s easy to light up a complete area. Really a nice beam!

Beamshots:

To start with, at first the TM16 projected on a white wall. Distance to the wall about 1 meter.

Camera settings: ISO100, WB daylight, F/2.7, 1/125 sec, 35mm
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animation picture
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Going outside now…..At first, the five output modes shown in the forest.

Camera settings: ISO100, WB daylight, F/2.7, 4.0 sec, 35mm
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animation
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Location 2: distance to the trees about 200 meters

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Some shoot-outs against other big-output lights:

a shootout against the Eagtac MX25LC4
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and against the Nitecore TM06 brother
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a shootout against the Fenix LD75C
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Conclusion:

I really looked forward to this light from the first day after it was released. I can tell you now that I really love this light. Although it’s not a light that you will carry with you every day (because of its weight and dimensions), you will love and pick up this light often for the “bigger” jobs. Operation with one hand is no problem, and the light feels comfortable in the hand. The TM16 has well-spaced modes, three instant modes and also a good low. So, no wishes here….Only thing you have to do, is look for a holster. Please don’t forget this in future Nitecore…. I’d like to see the possibility of mode-switching up and down too. But overall, this is one the most impressive lights I’ve ever had: So much output in combination with decent throw!

Nitecore TM16 provided for review
 
Last edited:

markr6

Flashaholic
Joined
Jul 16, 2012
Messages
9,259
Personally I’d like to have a lockout by unscrewing the tailcap too. It won’t be a surprise that the TM16 doesn’t have momentary on.

The new EA81 features a tailcap lockout and they are basically the same design. I can't believe they didn't offer this on the TM16. But I let my TM16 sit for about a week and the cells didn't really drop in voltage, so I guess I'm OK with it.

GREAT review!
 

ven

Flashaholic
Joined
Oct 17, 2013
Messages
22,534
Location
Manchester UK
Great review as always kj75:) Its actually a bit smaller than i thought,looks a nice compact size for a search light. Mode spacing looks good from your excellent beam pics too:)
 

Tac Gunner

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Oct 22, 2012
Messages
1,647
Location
Bluegrass Region of KY
Great review and I like the direct comparison of the TM16 and ld75c. I wanted the ld75c when it came out but after many reviews and the price I decided to pass, now this has come out and the sales that are being ran on it really tempt me to get a tm16. I'm trying to tell myself I'm better off buying 2xAA and 1x18650 lights because I will actually carry them and this would hang on the rack just like my other lights this size but this and the new EA81 are just so tempting, maybe black friday.
 

markr6

Flashaholic
Joined
Jul 16, 2012
Messages
9,259
Great review and I like the direct comparison of the TM16 and ld75c. I wanted the ld75c when it came out but after many reviews and the price I decided to pass, now this has come out and the sales that are being ran on it really tempt me to get a tm16. I'm trying to tell myself I'm better off buying 2xAA and 1x18650 lights because I will actually carry them and this would hang on the rack just like my other lights this size but this and the new EA81 are just so tempting, maybe black friday.

I always recommend getting those more practical, smaller lights first. Then get something like this once you get bored or the itch for crazy lumens/throw!
 

Tac Gunner

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Oct 22, 2012
Messages
1,647
Location
Bluegrass Region of KY
I always recommend getting those more practical, smaller lights first. Then get something like this once you get bored or the itch for crazy lumens/throw!

I'm already bored with what I have and as you can see in my signature that isn't many lol. 1000 lumens isn't much compared to what's available now lol. I just got my xhp50 drop in from Mountain electronics for my solarforce l2 and even though it's close to 2000 lumens it's still not enough, I want more lol!
 

markr6

Flashaholic
Joined
Jul 16, 2012
Messages
9,259
I'm already bored with what I have and as you can see in my signature that isn't many lol. 1000 lumens isn't much compared to what's available now lol. I just got my xhp50 drop in from Mountain electronics for my solarforce l2 and even though it's close to 2000 lumens it's still not enough, I want more lol!

HAHA get on this TM16 then! Or an Acebeam K60.
 

CelticCross74

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Aug 30, 2014
Messages
3,994
Location
Fairfax Va
outstanding review!!! My only complaints are first: why on EARTH is the tripod mount on the tail? Second:its almost 2016 where are the U3 or XP-L's at? They are more efficient and run a touch cooler. Third: NO SHEATH??!!! COME ON!! Not only should this light come with a sheath it should come with a VERY nice sheath! I have the same complaints with the new TK75. These are big lights but they are NOT so big that providing good sheaths with them is unfeasible. How else is one supposed to carry the light when not in use out in the bush anyways? I have many tripods and having the mount on the tail makes mounting it very impractical and throws off the tripods balance. Its a great new gen Nitecore i do agree but there is no excuse for no U3/XP-L set up same goes for Fenix. Think of it, a quad XP-L HI 4000 lumen laser with a properly located tripod mount(behind the head) AND high quality belt sheath for when not in use out in the bush. TM16 and 2015 TK75 are beasts indeed but still fail to TRULY take it to the next level that many of us expected. I look forward to Vinh cracking open both TM16 and 2015 TK75 and truly opening up what these monsters are capable of just by changing emitters no power increase needed....harumph!
 

kj75

Enlightened
Joined
Sep 10, 2012
Messages
892
Location
The Netherlands
My only complaints are first: why on EARTH is the tripod mount on the tail? Second:its almost 2016 where are the U3 or XP-L's at? They are more efficient and run a touch cooler. Third: NO SHEATH??!!!

Maybe, a 2016-version to come? :)
It's Nitecore, so you'll never know.....;)
 

markr6

Flashaholic
Joined
Jul 16, 2012
Messages
9,259
TM16 and 2015 TK75 are beasts indeed but still fail to TRULY take it to the next level that many of us expected. I look forward to Vinh cracking open both TM16 and 2015 TK75 and truly opening up what these monsters are capable of just by changing emitters no power increase needed....harumph!

Vinh said he did a current bump on mine, but I don't know how much. He's still waiting to get in the brightest 5000K emitters available, so I'm trying to be patient! Any day now :)

I purchased a $4 camera lens bag on Amazon. I think it's neoprene with a clip and a few other attachment points. Pretty nice! But yes, they could AT LEAST include a cheap fabric pouch to protect from scratches when in a bag.
 
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