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Thread: Review - Klarus XT2CR

  1. #1
    Flashaholic* old4570's Avatar
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    Default Review - Klarus XT2CR


    Sent for review by FastTech (dot) com


    For review I have the Klarus XT2CR a 1600 Lumen EDC able flashlight with two modes of operation , Tactical and Outdoors . And right off may I suggest that the outdoor modes are the choice modes for most people . The XT2CR came set to tactical out of the box and initially I was left some what confused by exactly what Klarus was trying to achieve with the mode of operation ( Tactical ) . The XT2CR has two switches at the back of the tailcap , the main switch and a mode switch . Pressing down on the mode switch in the Tactical mode short cuts to strobe and the only way to stop accidental activation is to unscrew the tailcap . ( Lock out the tailcap ) There does appear to be mode memory , but its the strangest mode memory ! and only seems to work for Low , though a few times I got the light to go into medium ? ( Very strange ) But then there is no mention of mode memory in the instructions ?


    User Interface :


    You have two switches in the tailcap . The main switch ( a forward clicky ) and a mode switch . The main switch turns the light on or gives you momentary function with Turbo output . There are two modes of operation , Tactical and Outdoor .


    Tactical = 3 Light levels ( Turbo - High - Low and strobe function )


    Outdoor = 4 Light Levels ( Turbo - High - Medium - Low and SOS function ) .


    Changing Mode = Instruction manual sux's for this one : Hold down the mode switch , a green light will come on to indicate battery condition , keep holding down the mode switch . The green light will go out , then after a while a red light will come on and start flashing = Now press the main switch and you have changed from Tactical or Outdoor to the other mode of operation .


    Two Switches - Its interesting that Klarus has gone with two switches , but it is one way to have your cake and eat it . With a forward clicky switch once you have selected a light level you must turn off the light and then using the momentary function select a new light level and turn the light on again . Yes this is the burden that people that like the forward clicky normally need to put up with . No longer , now you can have your forward clicky and just use the mode switch to change light levels .
    Changing Light Levels
    Tactical = Turn the light on and press the mode switch - just a quick press will do it . ( Turbo - High - Low )
    Outdoor = There are two ways to do in outdoor mode . Press the main switch to turn the light on and then press the mode switch . This way the light starts in Turbo - Low - Medium - High .
    If you don't want to start in Turbo .. Press the mode switch and hold for two seconds . Now the light starts in Low - Medium - High - Turbo .. To exit either momentary the forward clicky or hold down the mode switch for 2 seconds .


    Short Cuts :


    Mode switch = Strobe in Tactical mode . Low in Outdoor mode .
    Strobe = Mode switch in Tactical mode , instant from the light being off or a few seconds to activate with the light on . ( Only available in Tactical mode )
    SOS = Mode switch held down for 4 seconds when the light is on ( only available in Outdoor mode )
    Turbo = Always VIA the main switch .

    Performance :


    Tactical Mode


    Himax 18650
    Turbo - 790 Lumens / High - 395 Lumens / Low - 19 Lumens
    Solarforce V3 18650
    Turbo - 1165 Lumens / High - 394 Lumens / Low - 19 Lumens
    SONY VTC4 18650
    Turbo - 1630 Lumens / High - 394 Lumens / Low - 20 Lumens

    Outdoor mode


    Himax 18650
    Turbo - 790 / High - 392 / Medium - 93 / Low - 17
    Solarforce V3 18650
    Turbo - 1170 / High - 393 / Medium - 94 / Low - 18
    SONY VTC4
    Turbo - 1635 / High - 397 / Medium - 95 / Low - 18

    There is quite a bit of sag on Turbo , whether it is voltage or heat related or quite possibly both as there is quite a bit of heat pumped out by the Cree XHP35 emitter . Also from the output figures we can see that the Klarus XT2CR really wants high performance batteries if you want to see maximum output . Anything short of really impressive batteries will most likely result in a performance loss . Checking for parasitic drain , I measured some 4.59mA .

    Conclusion :
    The Tactical mode just confused me in the sense that I could not really understand what Klarus was trying to do ? On the other hand the Outdoor mode was to me some what brilliant . Two different ways to turn on the light , from polar opposites ( Low - Turbo ) and SOS hidden away . ( Would I have done it this way - No ) Yes you can EDC the XT2CR , yes it's well made , has a sturdy clip and the UI is easy to use and live with . Performance is very much dependent on the battery chosen ( so chose a good one ) and I found the light levels easy to live with .
    Tactical mode - I just don't see it ?
    The holster - ? Light does not fit it that well .
    Outdoor mode - Love it !
    Belt / pocket clip - Sturdy and functional !
    Beam profile - Flood with lots of power !
    Smooth reflector
    Nice hard anodizing
    Well machined - Threads etc
    USB port for recharging - In a car - caravan - boat - anywhere you have a USB adapter or powerbank .
    Parasitic drain = 4.59mA measured .

    I can dream - Yes I would have done it differently .. First the mode switch would do nothing but change modes , I would have gone with about 6 light levels . Adding Moon mode 1-2 lumens , and something after 400 lumens , maybe 800 lumens . Also would have added mode memory and no short cuts to anything , no flashy modes . Just go with a easy to live with , easy to use light with mode memory , the forward clicky and mode switch . ( Now that's Tactical )
    Anyways I can not only live with , but actually enjoy the Outdoor mode ( It's trick ) and I do really like the light levels . But there is this slight nagging feeling that there is a light level or two missing from the package . Klarus has certainly made a trick or is that flash - flashlight that they probably hope will appeal to people that like trick stuff . Unfortunately the Tactical mode left me unimpressed , but to counter that the Outdoor mode of operation is impressive if perhaps a little complicated or confusing to newbees . Certainly the user manual could use a little revision when it comes to choosing which mode of operation you want to go with .
    What you have is a well made powerful flashlight with perhaps more options than the average person would need . ( Is it too trick ? ) There are so many flashlights built to this form factor now that the market might be a little flush with choices and I can't help but feel that perhaps Klarus was just trying too hard to make this light appealing to everyone and in doing so , perhaps they lost some direction .
    In the Outdoor mode of operation I think the Klarus XT2CR ticks most of the boxes for the majority of people and I found it easy to live with and impressive in performance . The light has given me no problems or concerns in regard to quality and because my personal feelings I will forgo giving the XT2CR a score , my opinion is some what negative to the Tactical mode of operation and quite frankly other people might just love it . Bottom line is - No problems detected - a well made and powerful flashlight with a very nice beam profile ( for me ) that really pushes light out , especially in Turbo .

    Last edited by old4570; 04-29-2018 at 06:17 PM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    The Tactical mode just confused me in the sense that I could not really understand what Klarus was trying to do ?
    There are things I don't like about the XT2CR, but I think the tactical mode is fairly brilliant, maybe my single favorite UI. Can I ask what's confusing you? Have you had training, confused at why they've made the decisions they made? Apologies if you know all this already, and your confusion lies elsewhere, but here's some explanation. For defensive use, the types of things one might do:

    - Most importantly, use turbo. Sometimes you might want to use turbo in momentary mode (e.g., a police officer flashing and moving during a search). Sometimes, you might want to use turbo in constant-on mode (for example, a police officer moving in towards a suspect who appears to be surrendering)(this one is a little more controversial -- many feel clickies have no place on a tactical light). Since this is the most important usage, both of these are supported by the main button. For this, the main button should always call up turbo, every time, memory mode is not a good choice. Klarus got all of this right. In short -- perfect choice for main button behavior.

    - Use strobe. You can shortcut to strobe right from off, via the mode button. Again, perfect choice.

    - Transition from any mode to strobe (e.g., an officer has the light on medium to conduct an interview, then transitions to strobe as the thread increases). While I personally question this, some people subscribe to it. And again, it's supported -- when the light is on in any mode, press-and-hold mode to switch from that mode to strobe. Again, good choice.

    For those who do not use strobe in their training, they can stick with the big button, and get a forward momentary clickie turbo.
    For those who subscribe to using strobe, they can hit the mode button from any mode and get to strobe.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    My biggest problem with this light when I reviewed it was the slow, visible PWM on lower modes. I found it virtually intolerable to use except on high. The output regulation was also kind of weird, throttling when it shouldn't (it has a boost driver and I tried cooling it submerged in water).

    As for UIs combining tactical and utility, I really like how the Acebeam L-series does it. The forward-clicky tailswitch is always max output as with the XT2CR, but the side switch is an independent e-switch UI similar to the Olight S-series. It's also impossible to change modes when the tailswitch is on.
    Ceilingbounce - flashlight testing and runtime graphs for Android

  4. #4
    Flashaholic* old4570's Avatar
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    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Talmadge View Post
    There are things I don't like about the XT2CR, but I think the tactical mode is fairly brilliant, maybe my single favorite UI. Can I ask what's confusing you? Have you had training, confused at why they've made the decisions they made? Apologies if you know all this already, and your confusion lies elsewhere, but here's some explanation. For defensive use, the types of things one might do:

    - Most importantly, use turbo. Sometimes you might want to use turbo in momentary mode (e.g., a police officer flashing and moving during a search). Sometimes, you might want to use turbo in constant-on mode (for example, a police officer moving in towards a suspect who appears to be surrendering)(this one is a little more controversial -- many feel clickies have no place on a tactical light). Since this is the most important usage, both of these are supported by the main button. For this, the main button should always call up turbo, every time, memory mode is not a good choice. Klarus got all of this right. In short -- perfect choice for main button behavior.

    - Use strobe. You can shortcut to strobe right from off, via the mode button. Again, perfect choice.

    - Transition from any mode to strobe (e.g., an officer has the light on medium to conduct an interview, then transitions to strobe as the thread increases). While I personally question this, some people subscribe to it. And again, it's supported -- when the light is on in any mode, press-and-hold mode to switch from that mode to strobe. Again, good choice.

    For those who do not use strobe in their training, they can stick with the big button, and get a forward momentary clickie turbo.
    For those who subscribe to using strobe, they can hit the mode button from any mode and get to strobe.
    Confused ? = Yes by Klarus .. Confused about the light no !

    A) I am no fan of strobe
    B) Activating strobe VIA the mode button with the light off - SHORT CUT TO STROBE .. I don't see it .
    Not for one moment would I consider this a TACTICAL flashlight .
    And I also don't consider STROBE to be tactical .

    But then hey , I am not in the military nor have I ever been . For all I know the US military might take DISCO balls into battle ...
    But with so many experts - I am probably bound to be wrong ..

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    Quote Originally Posted by Zak View Post
    My biggest problem with this light when I reviewed it was the slow, visible PWM on lower modes. I found it virtually intolerable to use except on high. The output regulation was also kind of weird, throttling when it shouldn't (it has a boost driver and I tried cooling it submerged in water).

    As for UIs combining tactical and utility, I really like how the Acebeam L-series does it. The forward-clicky tailswitch is always max output as with the XT2CR, but the side switch is an independent e-switch UI similar to the Olight S-series. It's also impossible to change modes when the tailswitch is on.
    PWM - Really ?

  6. #6

    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    It's probably technically ripple rather than PWM. Point it into the lens of a phone camera and cycle through the modes; you should see scanlines. Looking back at my review, it was most severe in medium. It was bad enough to be visible to the naked eye as a strobe effect when illuminating a moving object or scanning across an area.
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    Flashaholic* old4570's Avatar
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    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    Hmmmm , I did , I did point it into two cameras .. And all I go was solid lines ( Solid purple / pink lines ) .. PWM shows up with both cameras if the light utilizes such . And I got no PWM in any mode .

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    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    Quote Originally Posted by old4570 View Post
    Confused ? = Yes by Klarus .. Confused about the light no !

    A) I am no fan of strobe
    Ah, okay. But if you don't want to use strobe, you just stick with using the main button, which always turns on in high, with NO mode memory, in momentary or clickie, which is exactly the right behavior. That already puts it ahead of many lights that claim to be tactical, but do things like progress the mode every time the rear button is pressed, or have mode-memory. Perfectly tactical interface, right? Unless you're a momentary-only guy?

    BTW, have you trained and don't like strobe? There are great guys who are more knowledgeable than me on the topic, on both sides of the discussion. I've trained it and decided that with some exceptions, I'm with you, I don't use it in most scenarios. Luckily, just going off the main button, the interface is right-on in tactical mode.

    B) Activating strobe VIA the mode button with the light off - SHORT CUT TO STROBE .. I don't see it .
    I don't see why ... it's insanely easy. We trained this in (no-firearms) combative drills, at dusk, and it worked really well, if the other guy was surprised by it, he had trouble gauging your distance. I don't train often enough to use it in firearm scenarios, but in these types of scenarios, it's effortless. Works great.

    Not for one moment would I consider this a TACTICAL flashlight .
    What about the UI on the main button, which is pretty much universally considered the right interface (always turn on in high, no mode memory ever, momentary or constant on), makes this non-tactical? I'm not trying to be argumentative,and I don't want to talk you into strobe if you've decided it's not for you, but I think most would say this is absolutely a suitable interface even if you don't use strobe, and if you do use strobe, it's bang-on. The only debate I anticipated on the main button is whether momentary-only is better than clickie, but very few lights have that option (right?). If you're using the main button only, what's not matching your view of tactical? I guess I'm wondering what specifically about the main button's behavior doesn't work for you, and what specifically do you consider a suitable tactical UI?
    Last edited by Joe Talmadge; 05-01-2018 at 07:31 AM.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    Quote Originally Posted by old4570 View Post
    Hmmmm , I did , I did point it into two cameras .. And all I go was solid lines ( Solid purple / pink lines ) .. PWM shows up with both cameras if the light utilizes such . And I got no PWM in any mode .
    Here's what I got on medium:



    Maybe they read the earlier reviews and fixed it quietly.
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    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Talmadge View Post
    Ah, okay. But if you don't want to use strobe, you just stick with using the main button, which always turns on in high, with NO mode memory, in momentary or clickie, which is exactly the right behavior. That already puts it ahead of many lights that claim to be tactical, but do things like progress the mode every time the rear button is pressed, or have mode-memory. Perfectly tactical interface, right? Unless you're a momentary-only guy?

    BTW, have you trained and don't like strobe? There are great guys who are more knowledgeable than me on the topic, on both sides of the discussion. I've trained it and decided that with some exceptions, I'm with you, I don't use it in most scenarios. Luckily, just going off the main button, the interface is right-on in tactical mode.



    I don't see why ... it's insanely easy. We trained this in (no-firearms) combative drills, at dusk, and it worked really well, if the other guy was surprised by it, he had trouble gauging your distance. I don't train often enough to use it in firearm scenarios, but in these types of scenarios, it's effortless. Works great.



    What about the UI on the main button, which is pretty much universally considered the right interface (always turn on in high, no mode memory ever, momentary or constant on), makes this non-tactical? I'm not trying to be argumentative,and I don't want to talk you into strobe if you've decided it's not for you, but I think most would say this is absolutely a suitable interface even if you don't use strobe, and if you do use strobe, it's bang-on. The only debate I anticipated on the main button is whether momentary-only is better than clickie, but very few lights have that option (right?). If you're using the main button only, what's not matching your view of tactical? I guess I'm wondering what specifically about the main button's behavior doesn't work for you, and what specifically do you consider a suitable tactical UI?
    Hmmmmm ?

    A) I used the light with gloves , and accidentally activating strobe was too easy .. ( Way too easy )

    B) Exactly - too easy .. And there is no circumstance on earth that would make me use strobe with a firearm ... Never ever !
    If you have access to a reactive range (?) then run it at night strob'ing , no extra light .. Just a flashlight strob'ing away @ 1600 Lumens , then run it again ( different scenario ) with the light on High or Turbo ... ( What is the score ? )
    Strobe is a double edged sword , not only is the guy on the other end strobe'd but so is the user .

    C) I dont mind the UI , in fact I like it ... Just not the way it has been presented to us ..

    I firmly believe Klarus tried to do too much with this light , and in doing so ..

    For a flashlight to be tactical ( rather than tacticool ) , it needs to be fool proof . The XT2CR does not meet this criteria , and Strobe with guns ? A lot like alcohol and guns !

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    Quote Originally Posted by Zak View Post
    Here's what I got on medium:



    Maybe they read the earlier reviews and fixed it quietly.

    Hmmmm ,



    Looks like very fast PWM , not something the naked eye is going to detect ...
    1st part of the video is another light = NO PWM
    2nd part is the XT2CR with what looks like very fast PWM , only way I could detect it was viewing some video ..

  12. #12

    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    It was visible to the naked eye for me. The XT12S is worse; I had initially assumed they had the same driver, but that doesn't seem to be the case.

    I'm hoping this means they fixed it. I'm eager to see more samples to confirm that.
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    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    Hmmm, if the reviewer doesn’t understand the requirements of a tactical light, then should they be reviewing a tactical light? The XT2CR (which I reviewed last year) is great for instant access to turbo or strobe. What it is missing is mode memory and ability to use momentary on any intermediate mode. Personally I prefer the Nitecore P10GT’s user interface (which uses a similar two tail switch setup) though that light suffers from visible PWM and being a bit too cool white. There is PWM in the lower modes of the XT2CR but it is not visible in light trails when using it for light painting. Thus it appears to be fast PWM.

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    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    Quote Originally Posted by stephenk View Post
    Hmmm, if the reviewer doesnÂ’t understand the requirements of a tactical light, then should they be reviewing a tactical light? The XT2CR (which I reviewed last year) is great for instant access to turbo or strobe. What it is missing is mode memory and ability to use momentary on any intermediate mode. Personally I prefer the Nitecore P10GTÂ’s user interface (which uses a similar two tail switch setup) though that light suffers from visible PWM and being a bit too cool white. There is PWM in the lower modes of the XT2CR but it is not visible in light trails when using it for light painting. Thus it appears to be fast PWM.
    I'm not really sure people understand what Tactical is ! ( as opposed to Tacticool )

    I suppose there are several levels of tactical ( I would guess )

    1) Military Tactical
    2) Law enforcement Tactical
    3) Other Gooberment Agencies - FBI - CIA - NSA - Homeland - Some sort of Tactical FED
    4) Wana Bee's
    5) Idiots

    And then you can break that into defensive or offensive ..

    So what makes a flashlight TACTICAL as opposed to TACTI-cool ?

    Hmmm , interesting .....
    Might depend on who you ask ...
    And the scenario the flashlight is asked to play it's part in !

    If we look at flashlights used by professionals , such as military or police and what departments buy for tactical use !
    Reliability - strength - simplicity - size ? ( portability ) as well as power source .
    We might get some idea ...
    The P6 Surefire was a top choice for a very long time due to these considerations ...
    So for a while there the P6 was the yardstick ..
    Over here the Police used Maglites for the longest time ( Big heavy hulking under powered things they were ) But they were strong - reliable - and simple .. the UI was click and go - anybody could use it ! Plenty of spare parts too .
    So ? What is tactical ?

    1) Possibly a simple bullet proof UI
    2) Strength and reliability
    3) An easy to use / find / reliable power source
    4) Spare parts availability
    5) Fool proof operation

    When I look about me I can see several Flashlights that could be Tactical , and my Number one pick would be the Nitecore MT22C , if LEGO is permitted then the Nitecore EC22 head on the Nitecore MT22 Body ..
    Another is the Zanflare F1 .. Out of all the lights I own , I don't consider many as Tactical at all .. OK I do have a Surefire P6 , but it's so old and stock ( Has a LED in it ) .
    The Jetbeam jet-IIM TAC , could be tactical .. ( Guess they don't call it TAC for nothing )
    It's not just what people want , but suitability enters the equation . ( Oh and LIABILITY )

    Hmmm , I am not going to spell out why Strobe is not tactical , because it should be self evident .

  15. #15
    Flashaholic* stephenk's Avatar
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    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    Quote Originally Posted by old4570 View Post
    I'm not really sure people understand what Tactical is ! ( as opposed to Tacticool )

    I suppose there are several levels of tactical ( I would guess )

    1) Military Tactical
    2) Law enforcement Tactical
    3) Other Gooberment Agencies - FBI - CIA - NSA - Homeland - Some sort of Tactical FED
    4) Wana Bee's
    5) Idiots

    And then you can break that into defensive or offensive ..

    So what makes a flashlight TACTICAL as opposed to TACTI-cool ?

    Hmmm , interesting .....
    Might depend on who you ask ...
    And the scenario the flashlight is asked to play it's part in !

    If we look at flashlights used by professionals , such as military or police and what departments buy for tactical use !
    Reliability - strength - simplicity - size ? ( portability ) as well as power source .
    We might get some idea ...
    The P6 Surefire was a top choice for a very long time due to these considerations ...
    So for a while there the P6 was the yardstick ..
    Over here the Police used Maglites for the longest time ( Big heavy hulking under powered things they were ) But they were strong - reliable - and simple .. the UI was click and go - anybody could use it ! Plenty of spare parts too .
    So ? What is tactical ?

    1) Possibly a simple bullet proof UI
    2) Strength and reliability
    3) An easy to use / find / reliable power source
    4) Spare parts availability
    5) Fool proof operation

    When I look about me I can see several Flashlights that could be Tactical , and my Number one pick would be the Nitecore MT22C , if LEGO is permitted then the Nitecore EC22 head on the Nitecore MT22 Body ..
    Another is the Zanflare F1 .. Out of all the lights I own , I don't consider many as Tactical at all .. OK I do have a Surefire P6 , but it's so old and stock ( Has a LED in it ) .
    The Jetbeam jet-IIM TAC , could be tactical .. ( Guess they don't call it TAC for nothing )
    It's not just what people want , but suitability enters the equation . ( Oh and LIABILITY )

    Hmmm , I am not going to spell out why Strobe is not tactical , because it should be self evident .
    You can add light painting photographers to the list of people who use tactical lights. Tactical (as opposed to Tactical-cool i.e. men who buy anything with tactical in the name because it makes them think they are well 'ard) generally refers to lights with forward clicky / momentary switches so that you have more control over the on/off. Some LEOs, and of course light painters also like the instant access to strobe (though I would prefer it if Klarus used a single frequency strobe).

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Review - Klarus XT2CR

    In my experience the only thing my colleagues and I use the strobe mode for is for directing traffic in conjunction with an attached wand. I'm also not a fan of velcro fastening holsters. Within a few weeks or months of wearing it on your belt and sitting in the car the holster will be pushed and rubbed against the car seat and the velcro will give out.

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