Weltool T12

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Weltool T12 3TAC review

Weltool T12 specifications

Brand/modelWeltool T12
Flashlight categoryTactical flashlight
LEDHigh power X-Led
Max. output2,000 Lumens
Max. beam distance750 meters
Max. beam intensity141,000 cd
Battery config.18650
Onboard chargingN/A
Modes4
BlinkiesStrobe
WaterproofIP67
Review dateFebruary 2024

Review intro:

If you’re into tactical flashlights, you have probably heard of Weltool. If not… you’ll be surprised because they are an established company with many great tactical-style flashlights.

This time we are looking at the Weltool T12 3TAC flashlight, also dubbed as the Nine Dragons. Yeah, I know; Weltool sometimes adds funny nicknames ;–)

So what’s this all about? And why does it have all those holes inside the head?

How does it perform, and is it a real tactical flashlight?

What’s in the package

The packaging of the Weltool T12 looks lke your average Weltool box. The front side of the box displays an image of the flashlight along with its specifications. At the bottom of the box, there is a silver sticker indicating the type of LED, either CW or NW. Inside the box, you can find the following:

  • Weltool T12
  • Weltool INR18-30P battery (18650 with 3,000mAh)
  • Weltool M1Cs battery charger
  • USB-C charger cable
  • O-ring
  • Manual and Certificate of Quality

ps. Don’t forget to remove the plastic insulator in the tailcap before your first use.

Flashlight in use, Build Quality, and Warranty

The build quality of Weltool T12 flashlight is impressive, as expected from the brand. I have never faced any significant issues with my Weltool flashlights.

At first glance, the T12 looks like a 21700 flashlight, but it isn’t. The T12 is a dual-tube design, taking up more space than a normal 18650 flashlight.

One thing that caught my attention was the presence of small holes inside the flashlight, located just below the head. This is a unique feature that I haven’t seen before, and I believe it’s a method for heat dissipation. I’m curious to see if this will have a positive effect on its performance in the runtime tests.

In terms of handling, the T12 tactical flashlight operates like any other flashlight with a rear forward-clicky switch. A forward click on the switch will momentarily turn on the flashlight, while a full click will keep it on continuously. However, the flashlight can change modes when activated due to the secondary tube, which is different from normal forward-clicky designs.

Normally, only reverse clicky-switches can change modes when the flashlight is activated. So that makes the T12 somewhat special.

You can use it in the underhand position, but for tactical use, it’s probably better in the overhand position, with your thumb resting on or near the switch.

The flashlight has no lanyard attachment point as the switch protrudes without any walls or ridges protecting it. You could attach a lanyard to the pocket clip, but that may not be the best option.

Another way of carrying this light is by using the pre-attached pocket clip. The clip is pretty stiff, and you need a lot of force to remove it. And besides the pocket clip, the tailcap is the only other removable part. All other parts seem to be glued.

By default, Weltool does not include a holster, but they provide it as an optional feature and call it the Weltool FH7. Other available accessories for the T12 are a Yellow filter (LF39Y) and a Diffusion filter (LF39).

Regarding use cases, this is geared towards tactical use, duty, and first responders.

The threads are anodized and protected by two o-rings. This will definitely help to keep water out, but the IP rating is ‘only’ IP67.

Weltool’s warranty, according to their website:

From the date of sale (the serial number on the Lights body can show the date), the limited warranty for LED products is 5 years, and the warranty for LEP products is 2 years.

The above free warranty does not cover any damages or failure caused by:

  • Problems caused by alteration, misuse, abuse, or unreasonable
  • Battery leakage , improper operation or using poor quality battery
  • The products do not purchase from Weltool directly or its authorized dealers or other illegal way
  • Broken lens caused by external force
  • Lamp, switch runs out of its lifespan
  • rubber cap, O ring’s naturally aging
  • normal wear and tea, imprinting, or color finishes
  • Other problems caused by improper operation
  • Discontinued products

LED, Lens, Bezel, Beam, and Reflector

The T12 can be had with two emitters: Cool white (6500K) and Neutral white (5000K). The one I am reviewing is the cool white 6500K version.

Weltool does not specify the LED used, instead referring to it as a high-power X LED. It is apparent to the trained eye that they are utilizing the Luminus SFT40 LED. This non-domed LED combines high output with long distance.

Not mentioning the LED is probably because they can change the LED without changing the name or specifications. I heard this from the manufacturers, so they can keep selling their lights for years to come, without having to rely on the exact LEDs they originally used. This is likely a pretty common thing for big manufacturers. Ones an LED becomes obsolete, they don’t need to change the specifications.

The LED is centered perfectly in a smooth reflector and protected with a green AR-coated lens. A slightly crenelated black bezel then protects this. I’m not 100% sure, but it does look like an average aluminum bezel instead of stainless steel.

The beam itself is throwy, but still with lots of useful spill. It’s definitely not a pencil beam.

Anyway, it’s time to do some measurements.

Spectral measurements:  

I used a Sekonic C800 spectrometer to measure the flashlight at about 5 meters distance. 

Mode:CCT:CRI Ra:duv
Turbo (full power)7690K69.7-0.0025
Low6133K70.00.0128

This is quite interesting and a huge shift in color temperature. It goes from 6133K to 7690K, and from -0.0025 to 0.128duv. This means that the higher the output, the cooler the beam. And the higher the output, the less ‘greenish’ the beam becomes.

Dimensions and its competition

Dimensions: 

Weltool T12MillimetersInches
Length152 mm6 in
Head diameter39 mm1.5 in
Tailcap diameter32 mm1.3 in
Body diameter27 mm1 in

Dimensions are rounded to the nearest millimeter and the nearest tenth of an Inch.

Weight

Weltool T12Weight in gramsWeight in oz.
Without battery:175 g5.6 oz
With battery222 g7.14 oz

Weight is rounded to the nearest gram and tenth of an Oz.

Weltool T12 Flashlight comparison

Group 1, from left to right: Weltool flashlights: Weltool T11, Weltool W3 Pro Tac, Weltool W3 Pro, Weltool T12, Weltool W2, Weltool T1 Pro

Group 2, Tactical flashlights from left to right: Nitecore MH25 v2, Weltool T12, Fenix TK22 Tac, NEXTORCH TA30 MAX, Speras Est Max, Weltool T2R, Olight Warrior X3.

Weltool T12 UI : User interface and driver

I haven’t experienced this UI before, and it took a bit before I could make sense of it. But it’s not as difficult as it may seem. There are three different UIs, hence the name 3TAC…

Also, Weltool calls the highest output mode: Full Power.. I will call it Turbo for now.

How do you change the mode group on the Weltool T12 3TAC?

To select a different mode group, you must half-press the switch 9 times. The flashlight will start blinking in 3 different ways to show you are in the mode configuration. The first few blinks in high output will indicate Mode Group A, the second set of blinks in low output will indicate Mode Group B, and the third set of flashes (not blinking) will indicate Mode Group C. To activate a specific group, you have to click the switch fully.

To remember the groups, you can think of the first continuous mode of each group.

The available main mode groups:

  • A menu: Turbo (momentary), High, Low
  • B menu: Low (momentary), Turbo, Medium
  • C menu: Turbo (momentary), Strobe, High

The available special modes (blinkies):

  • Strobe, but only available in C menu

How the UI works when the flashlight is still turned OFF:

A menu from OFF:

  • Half-press: Turbo mode, momentary
  • Single click: High

B menu from OFF:

  • Half-press: Low mode, momentary
  • Single click: Turbo

C menu from OFF:

  • Half-press: Turbo mode, momentary
  • Single click: Strobe

How the UI works when the flashlight is turned ON:

A menu from ON:

  • Half-press: switch between High and Low
  • Single-click: turns off

B menu from ON

  • Half-press: switch between Turbo and Medium
  • Single-click: turns off

C menu from ON

  • Half-press: switch between Strobe and High
  • Single-click: turns off

Shortcuts within the UI:

  • See modes menus. Half press is different from full click.

Mode memory:

  • N/A, A half press and single click depend on the selected mode menu

Blinky modes:

  • Strobe is only part of the C menu, a full click will turn on Strobe

Low battery warning:

  • The flashlight blinks when the battery is low, about 3-4 minutes before it turns off. This will give you enough time to replace the battery.

Lock-out mode:

  • None, you have to use the mechanical switch to turn the light off.

PWM:

  • Not that I can see by eye.

Firmware / UI Conclusion:

  • What I like about the hidden modes is that you can still do morse coding without activating the menu configuration.
  • Since Weltool is a very dedicated flashlight maker for tactical use, they must have thought these menus through, unlike other brands. So, each menu might have a specific tactical-use case in mind.

Weltool T12 charging and batteries

Weltool added a Weltool INR18-30P battery into their package, an 18650-type lithium-ion battery with a 3,000mAh capacity. It arrived with a resting voltage of 3.56V. Note: You need to remove the insulator from the tailcap to be able to use the flashlight.

If you already own a bunch of 18650 batteries, you shouldn’t worry. The T12 accepts all kinds of batteries, from short unprotected flat tops, to long button top 18650’s with USB ports.

Weltool added the Weltool MC1S battery charger. This is a single-bay charger for all kinds of batteries, ranging from short 16340 to 21700 batteries. However, it is important to note that it’s not recommended for protected 20700 or 21700 batteries.

During charging, there is a solid red light. My USB tester showed a 0.92 A charging current and roughly 5V, making it about 4.7 watts of charging. That is not really fast, but also not too slow. For 18650 batteries, this is just fine.

A full charge took 3 hours and 39 minutes, and the end voltage was 4.20V.

Charge typeFlashlight fitsNo fitCharge time
MC1s charger includedAll 186503h 39min

Performance test

This is the gear I use for testing:

GearPurposeLink to buy
Hagner E4-XMeasuring beam intensity (throw)Inquire at Hagner.se
2* Extech SDL400Lumens and logging runtimesAmazon.com, Amazon.co.uk,
Leica Disto D2Distance for throw measurementsAmazon.com, Amazon.co.uk,
Sekonic C-800 Spectrometer for LED measurementsAmazon.com, Amazon.co.uk
Uni-T UTi260BThermal Image cameraAmazon.com,

Lumen measurements:

How Lumens are Measured: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards How Lumens are Measured: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards: The ANSI FL1 standards specify that output in lumens should be measured 30 seconds after turning on, as this is the standardized time for measuring brightness according to the industry standard. This is why we focus on this part in our measurements. The ANSI FL1 standards require an ambient temperature of 22 ± 3°C. We record the ambient the ambient temperature to identify potential reasons for any observed discrepancies.

The output measurements in this review are based on my homemade integrating spheres, each equipped with an Extech SDL400 Lux Meter. For consistency and accuracy, a calibration light (Convoy S2+ with 249lm and a Convoy S2+ with 261lm) is measured before each set of lumen measurements.
One of the lux meters uses an ND camera filter for high-output lights to prevent the lux meter from maxing out. This is either the Kenko PRO1D ND16 for up to about 80,000 lumens or the Gobe ND32 for anything above.

All of my readings were taken from a fully-charged Weltool INR18-30P.

The measurements were taken manually at turn on and 30 seconds. The 10-minute numbers are taken from the runtime graph.

ModeSpecifiedAt turn on30 sec10 min
Low28 lm31 lm31 lm
Med560 lm512 lm516 lm511 lm
High1000 lm1009 lm1004 lm956 lm
Turbo2000 lm2000 lm1846 lm1103 lm
Turbo 3.7V1494 lm1427 lm

Ambient temperature during testing:

  • The ambient temperature was 19.4 degrees Celcius

Weltool T12 battery life and runtime

How Runtimes are Measured: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards About ANSI FL1 runtime standards: The runtime is measured until the light drops to 10% of its initial output (30 seconds after turning on). This does not mean that the flashlight is not usable anymore. The last column shows how long the light actually works till it shuts off. If there is a + symbol, it means that the test was stopped at that particular point, but the light was actually still running. This happens on certain occasions, with certain drivers, firmware, or batteries.

Runtime tests were conducted in my 50cm homemade integrating sphere, paired with the Extech SDL400 data logging Lux Meter. Temperatures from the moment the runtime test started.

ModeSpecifiedRuntime (ANSI FL1)Time till shut offEnd Voltage
Low40h 57min
Med (17.8°C)2h 27min2h 08min2h 08min2.82V
High (18.6°C)1h 14min1h 04min1h 04min2.89V
Turbo (18.7°C)57min52 min52 min2.75V

The runtimes were pretty close to the specified runtimes. Their manual mentions an ambient temperature of 25 degrees Celsius, which could also have some influence. It’s winter here, and keeping the temperature stable is difficult.

Also, the resting voltage depends on the time you measure it. With most runtime tests, I don’t notice it when the flashlight turns off. So the battery may increase voltage between the moment it turns off, and the moment I measure it. But it gives at least an indication of how deep the battery discharges. And if there is any unusual behavior.

I believe that the cooling holes inside the flashlight might have to do with the high performance. Turbo mode can sustain above 1,000 lumens for 35 minutes, at which point it starts reducing.

And here is the comparison graph with other 18650 tactical flashlights. The dark line is the Weltool T12

Some of the best Tactical Flashlights we reviewed: These numbers are NOT from the specifications but are measured by our team. I removed the LEP flashlights that could fall into this category but aren’t comparable.

FlashlightMax. Output (lm)@30sec (lm)Candela (cd)Distance (m)
Armytek Dobermann Pro1071106831,606356
Armytek Predator Pro1206119340,850404
Armytek Viking Pro1999195829,069341
Brinyte PT18 pro1981192545,675427
Brinyte PT281705163617,800267
Cyansky P201740166514,405295
Fenix TK11 Tac1556148827,600332
Malkoff MDC Bodyguard8722112,650113
Nitecore P20 v289389313,900236
Olight S2R Baton 2131812897,500173
Olight Warrior Mini 21721165812,250221
Olight Warrior Mini 31724164314,075237
Powertac E5R-G41718160221,700295
Speras EST MAX240055517,250263
Streamlight Stinger 20202183214125,450319
Thrunite BSS v42336219014,775243
Weltool T1220001846 126,500711
Weltool T2R1589148641,750409
Wuben E12R1426120010,575206

Here’s an interactive comparison graph with some of the best 18650 tactical flashlights I reviewed.

Mobile phone? Hold your phone horizontally for a full graph. If still not clear, click this link to open the interactive graph in a new window.

And here is the same comparison, but then focused on the first 10 minutes. (Max. output only). Or open this link for a closer look at the graph.

Weltool T12 Peak beam intensity and beam distance measurements

About Peak beam intensity: Understanding ANSI FL1 Standards About peak beam intensity The calculated value of distance in meters at which the flashlight produces a light intensity of 0.25 lux. (0.25 lux is about the brightness of a full moon shining on an object). This means that the intensity has decreased so much, it becomes difficult to see darker objects, or objects that don’t reflect light. The columns ‘Meters’ and ‘Yards’ use rounded numbers.

Measurements were taken indoors at 5 meters with a Hagner E4-X Lux Meter. The measurements were taken 30 seconds after turn on. *I also tested it outdoors at 20 meters, in the cold, at around 0 degrees.

ModeSpecifiedI measuredmetersyards
Turbo141,000 cd126,500 cd711 m778 yd
High70,000 cd67,250 cd519 m567 yd
Med33,800 cd35,550 cd377 m412 yd
Low1,650 cd2,075 cd91 m100 yd
Turbo* (20m)141,000 cd115,600 cd680 m744 yd
  • *Turbo mode was also tested at 20 meters outdoors, at 0 degrees Celsius.

Ambient temperature during testing:

  • Indoors: 19.4 degrees Celsius, outdoors 0 degrees Celsius*.

Beamshots

For the shed and reflective fence beamshots, I used a Canon EOS 5D Mk2 with a 50mm lens. Manual settings: ISO1600, 1/4sec, F4, 5000K. The shed is about 65 meters / 71 yards away, and the reflective fence is about 200 meters.

Explore and compare the beamshots from the following flashlights:

  • Weltool T12
  • Weltool T2R
  • Olight Warrior Mini 3
  • Armytek Predator Pro
  • Fenix TK11
  • Acebeam E70 Mini

Please note that the following beamshots are mainly intended to showcase the beam pattern and beam quality, rather than overall performance. These images are typically taken directly after activation, and in different seasons or weather conditions, and therefore do not fully represent its overall performance. For accurate performance metrics, such as output, beam distance, and runtimes, you need to look at the performance section of this review.

Disclaimer: This flashlight was sent to us for review at no cost by Weltool. We have not been paid to review, nor have we been holding back on problems or defects.

Final Verdict

Pros

  1. Weltool build quality
  2. Comes with a battery and charger
  3. Great performance
  4. Unique ‘cooling’ feature
  5. 3 different tactical mode groups are available
  6. Forward clicky switch with dual tube for changing modes while turned on
  7. High sustained output
  8. Throws farther than its competition (18650)

Cons

  1. No lanyard attachment point
  2. Short runtimes compared to some competitors

Explanation on star ratings:

1: Avoid: my phone flashlight would be a better choice – 2: Poor: significant defect or issues; almost unusable – 3: Average: some defects or issues; but still usable 4: Good: recommended (minor issues) – 5: Great: highly recommended

Reviewer Marco
Author: Marco

5 stars: ★★★★★

While our star rating provides a reliable indicator, we encourage you to read the full review to make an informed decision based on your own needs and preferences.

Weltool makes some nice, high-quality tactical flashlights, and the Weltool T12 is a pretty unique offering. Three things stood out to me: the holes inside the head for cooling, the dual tube design in combination with a forward clicky switch, and performance (output and distance).

I shouldn’t forget to mention the three different tactical/duty menus to choose from. It’s great that it allows signaling/morse code without activating the hidden group configuration setting.

Performance-wise, it’s one of the best in its class (18650 tactical-style flashlights). It has a high sustained output and great throw capabilities. But, there is a caveat: the relatively short runtimes.

If you’re looking for something interesting with great performance for tactical use… I would definitely recommend taking this one into consideration.

Buy your Weltool T12 here

1lumen selects and reviews products personally. We may earn affiliate commissions through our links, which help support our testing.