The SRT-7 is a medium sized flashlight from Nitecore. It features their latest interface, the third generation SSR or “Smart Selector Ring” and is part of their “Smart Ring Tactical Series”. As the name would imply, it is marketed primarily toward military and law enforcement professionals as well as hunters. To my knowledge the SRT-7 is the first of its kind, offering a set of three RGB LEDs along with the primary emitter to produce a variety of modes with different colored outputs.
The dimensions are a total length of 6.22″ with a 1″ tube and maximum diameter of 1.57″ at the head. The weight without the battery is 6.1 oz and approximately 6.8 oz with. The main body is constructed with aircraft grade aluminum that has been given a tough, type III hard anodized finish.
The tail switch is covered with a rubber boot and the lens is a toughened, mineral glass with an antiglare coating. This is held in by a stainless steel bezel. The reflector is smooth and made from an undisclosed alloy.
The Revenger has the ubiquitous IPX-8 rating for submersion up to 2 meters and an impact resistance of up to 1.5 meters if dropped. To improve impact resistance, Nitecore uses spring contacts in the tail cap and head. This floating design helps buffer the batteries and is said to be great when weapon mounting, aiding in the absorption of recoil. With some testing, you can hear the batterie(s) hit the inside of the light. Regardless this doesn’t seem to compromise the electrical contact. It should be noted that the head spring contact is recessed and does not make contact with flat topped batteries.
The outer surface of the light has effective knurling along with deep slots around the diameter. This makes for a confident grip and easy disassembly. A slot in between the tail cap and main tube takes a supplied, plastic grip ring. This makes for an easy cigar style grip. Two stand-offs around the tail switch raise high enough that the light can tail stand. Since the head is quite large, a fairly flat level surface is required to allow this to happen.
The primary emitter is a CREE XM-L2 T6 configured for a maximum output of 960 ANSI lumens. There are three, secondary RGB LED’s nested in the reflector wall that take care of the colored modes. Both are powered by either two CR123’s or RCR123’s and 18650 rechargeable batteries. The maximum runtime is 200 hours on the lowest .1 lumen brightness and about an 1.45 hours on the highest. RGB run-time is not listed.
The light’s interface consists of a power button and the SmartSelectorRing. All modes can be momentarily accessed by partly depressing the forward clicking tail switch. Fully depressing this turns the light on. All modes are separated by a noticeable detent that makes a reassuring click.
The first mode is standby. When powered, a small red LED on the side of the head blinks at two second intervals to let you know the light is on. This is a great battery-saving feature, preventing unnecessary drainage. When the light is low on power the indicating LED flashes quickly. Turning clockwise from standby activates the “infinitely” variable brightness mode. This smoothly ramps the CREE LED up to maximum brightness and then clicks into the full power, Turbo Mode. One more click over activates a high frequency strobe. Turning counter clockwise from standby cycles through the colors, red, green and blue. The next click is a flashing red and blue police-like mode. The final detent puts the light into a beacon that flashes the main emitter at a slow interval with full brightness.
Overall this interface is intuitive to use despite the many modes. Since the variable output portion of the SSR has a wide area of smooth operation to control brightness, it is also easy to indicate where the primary light function is (all the rest are a succession of single clicks) when the light is off.
As for the output, the primary beam is bright with a focused hot spot and large spill area. I personally didn’t notice any artifacts from the RGB pockets but there is a slight ring outside of the spill that appears to be from the bezel. Nitecore measures the throw at just under 337 yards. For my personal preference this type of beam is usually better for outdoor use, however, the SSR allows you to acquire something desirable in most situations.
The RGB output is less impressive. The brightness is low and there are visible variations between the colors. These are probably best suited for close up jobs such as reading a map or for small indoor spaces where discrete use is desirable. Due to the off-centre configuration of the LED’s in the reflector wall, there are three distinct shapes cast. This, combined with the low brightness limits use. The red and blue flashing function of the RGB LED’s is probably the most helpful feature here, making a good warning light that isn’t blinding like the primary emitter. If a brighter colored light is required, Nitecore makes friction fit red, blue and green filters to be used with the CREE XM-L2 T6 as well as a diffusers and a traffic wand.
For carry options the SRT-7 comes with a well made, nylon sheath. This holds the light head-up and uses a velcro flap for retention. A metal d-ring on the back allows the light to be hung from gear. There is also a velcro closed belt loop that provides easy attachment or removal. Nitecore includes a lanyard that can be threaded through the tail-cap slots and a two way, snap on clip. Spare O rings and a switch boot are provided in the package.
Over-all the SRT-7 is a comprehensive flashlight. The primary emitter is extremely bright and versatile due to the “infinitely variable” control. The strobe and beacon, being placed at the SSR’s limits allow for quick, no fuss access when required. While the RGB LED’s aren’t powerful, nor is the beam particularly clean, they still create some interesting illumination options, the best being the red and blue flashing mode. Regardless of these quirks, the Nitecore SRT-7 is still a very capable work light. It supplies an impressive 960 lumen Turbo Mode along with a tough, well machined build and carry options at a competitive price.