I love Maglite Flashlights, particularly the traditional D-cell battery versions engineered to Maglite’s current pinnacle using LED technology. Interestingly, while Maglite is heavily invested in LED technology, it continues to produce a line of lights using Xenon incandescent bulbs. This allows Maglite to be able to provide extremely high-quality American-made flashlights at an affordable price. For example, while the 3 D-cell LED flashlight is priced at $50, the 3 D-cell incandescent model is only $16.95. There is obviously a major difference in lumen output between the two types, however.
My first rechargeable police duty flashlight was a used Streamlight SL-20. But I used incandescent rechargeable Maglites as a deputy sheriff for 20 years. We had one installed with a charger in every cruiser. Back then they were rated at 30,000 candlepower. They were solid, dependable and 10,000-candlepower brighter than the SL-20.
Maglite is the only American manufacturer (I know of) that still features a wide lineup of alkaline battery-powered incandescent flashlights. But they are also invested in conventionally styled rechargeable flashlights. One such model is the new ML150LR.
About the ML150LR
Sleekly styled and compact, the ML150LR splits the difference between full-sized patrol lights like the Mag Charger rechargeable LED flashlight and smaller belt-carried lights like the Mag-Tach LED Rechargeable. Maglite has also introduced a shorter version of the ML150R — the ML150LRS — designed to be worn on the belt.
Water-resistant Yes: IPX4
Drop-resistant 1 foot
– high 1,082
– low 138
– eco 25
– high 3 hours, 15 minutes
– low 18 hours
– eco 79 hours
Beam distance 458 meters
Length 10.6 inches
Barrel diameter 1.187 inches
Weight w/ batteries 15.2 ounces
I received a gloss-anodized aircraft aluminum ML150LR for testing. Each light is individually serialized, printed below the model number on the barrel. The ML150LR uses Maglite’s trademarked silver charging bands for external charging. There is nothing to align in the charger. It engages the charging ring no matter how the barrel is turned, making it very convenient. The standard ML150 does not have the ring feature. The user must remove the battery from the light to charge.
One charging cradle comes with the ML150LR along with an AC wall charger cord and a DC charger cord. It is very travel friendly. The cradle comes with a quick-release button for easy access to the light. The cradle has holes for wall mounting. The cradle’s charge-status LED changes from red to green when the light is fully charged.
ML150LR Rechargeable LED Operation
There is only one switch on the ML150LR: the multi-mode electronic switch. The switch is located on the barrel. The multi-mode switch provides quick access to five lighting modes: momentary, full, low, eco and strobe. The user can easily set the light in any of four different function sets: general (default setting), outdoor, law enforcement or tactical. These function sets contain different combinations of the five lighting modes. Switching function sets is remarkably simple if you follow the downloadable owner’s manual, which is quite detailed. It is probably one of the best owner’s manuals of any kind on the market. I kept my light in the general setting (full, low, eco) since I have retired from law enforcement and wouldn’t be using it for those purposes.
The QuickFocus head can instantly change the light from spot to flood. This only takes a quarter turn to adjust. It is a great improvement over older Maglite’s that had an unnecessarily wide range of adjustment.
I know that a 1,082-lumen flashlight doesn’t seem like much these days, but in reality, 1000-lumen lights are really all you need for 99 percent of lighting tasks. This is especially true considering the three-cell incandescent Maglite is only a 45-lumen light. It served law enforcement, firefighters and civilians extremely well for years.
The MLR150LR handles nearly all tasks well. While it is a general-purpose rechargeable built for utility, it is easily used in the old FBI or Harries flashlight shooting techniques in a pinch. It is available for approximately $120, depending on source. And if my evaluation doesn’t convince you, it received the National Tactical Officer’s Association 5-star rating.