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Recharge! Nitecore TM36 Review [Dependable]

Are you in need of a searchlight? Are you looking for something rechargeable? Need a light that you can always rely on? If you answered yes to any or all of these question you need to take a closer look at the Nitecore TM36. The TM36 is one of the smallest searchlight made in the industry, but don’t let its small size fool you. Keep on reading to find out everything the Nitecore TM36 has to offer.

If you are particularly interested in Nitecore check out our Nitecore Buyers Guide that has the history of the brand and some of their top current lights. We also link out to all of our other Nitecore light reviews from there.

Before You Buy

When it comes to buying flashlights there are literally hundreds of choices. If you are looking for the perfect light the decision can be hard. One of the first things you need to ask yourself is what you need the light for. If you spend a lot of time in the outdoors, whether it is camping or hiking, you want a searchlight type of light. When looking at searchlights you want something that you can rely on, you want to find something that is built to last. Your best searchlights are going to light up the distance. You want a searchlight with high lumens. Something that you know is bright enough to light up the darkest night.

Nitecore TM36

Nitecore TM36 SBT-70 LED Rechargeable Searchlight, Black

The Nitecore TM36 is Nitecore’s smallest rechargeable flashlight. Using a LUMINUS SBT-70 LED the Nitecore TM36 can emit up to 1800 lumens. This same LED paired with an integrated “precision digital optics technology reflector” provides a beam throw of 3608 feet. To prevent the light from overheating the TM36 offers thermal protection circuit technology. The TM36 also features a temperature sensor and optimized thermal heat fins to improve performance.

The Nitecore TM36 comes with an NBP52 battery pack to double the runtime. With a rechargeable light, you often worry about damage occurring from overcharging or not charging enough. The Nitecore TM36 features an intelligent charging circuit with voltage detection. This feature allows for safe and rapid charging of the light, so it is always ready when you need it.


  • Rechargeable
  • Lockout Mode
  • Two-stage single switch


  • No micro USB charging ability
  • On the heavy side


  • Dimensions: 10.94 inches long with a 3.54-inch diameter
  • Weight: 47.41 oz with battery pack
  • Lowest Setting: 50 lumens for 67 hours
  • Highest Setting: 1800 lumens for 1 hour and 45 minutes

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Nitecore TM36 Features & Benefits

User Interface


The Nitecore TM36 uses Nitecore’s patented single-button two-stage switch. This switch is similar to the shutter button on a camera and is fully designed for one-handed operation. Like other lights belonging to the Tiny Monster or TM series, the TM36 features a Turbo and Daily Mode. In Daily Mode users can select between four brightness levels. Last brightness level used will be memorized. In Turbo/Search mode no memory function is available. Users have the option of selecting between high and ultra-high modes. The two-stage switch also functions as an indicator switch. The light will flash once every two seconds to indicate where the light is when turned off or in standby mode.

Integrated OLED Display

The Nitecore TM36 offers users an integrated OLED display to provide real-time operating statuses. With the OLED display, everything is clearly displayed in an easy to read format.  The OLED screen will allow you to easily see the brightness level the light is currently using along with the lumen output. Battery information is also displayed via the OLED screen. Battery information includes approximate runtime, battery voltage, and battery status. The flashlight’s temperature is also displayed on the OLED screen.



The Nitecore TM36 is rechargeable, so you never have to worry about replacing the batteries. With the Nitecore TM36, the charging port is not compatible with a micro USB cable. In order to charge the TM36, you must use the AC wall adapter or the TM series car adapter. The wall charger comes with the light, while the car adapter must be purchased separately. To almost double the runtime of the Nitecore TM36 the light comes with an NBP52 ultra-high performance Li-ion rechargeable battery pack. The battery comes with two charging ports. The main port allows for independent charging of the battery pack. The secondary port allows the battery to be used as a backup power source.

Social Proof

I have read several reviews online and I am happy to report that several other flashlight enthusiasts feel the same way I do. Most of us agree that the Nitecore TM36 is an excellent rechargeable searchlight. One of the things talked about among several reviewers is how well this light lights up the night. It might not be the brightest light out there, buts throw is amazing. Several reviewers have reported the throw can light up an entire street enough to show several little details. Several reviewers complain about the Nitecore TM36’s price. Many feel it is too much for a searchlight style light. Another common complaint is Nitecore’s use of a battery pack over individual batteries.



Olight SR95S UT

Olight SR95s UT Intimidator SBT-70 1250 Lumens LED Flashlight, Black

For those of you that are looking for something a little less powerful than the Nitecore TM36, the Olight SR95S UT is an ideal choice. The Olight SR95S UT utilizes the LUMINUS SBT-70 LED, which is both powerful and efficient. This powerful LED can emit up to 1,250 lumens of light. To prevent overheating the Olight SR95S UT uses an advanced thermal management system with a hollowed-out head structure.  The Olight SR95S UT offers three brightness levels, plus a strobe mode, which is all accessed via the multi-function clicky side switch. The rechargeable lithium battery is built into the light and is charged through a charging port located on the tail cap.

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JETBeam T6

JETbeam T6 CREE XP-L LED 4350 Lumens Waterproof Flashlight Searchlight , Beam Distance: 750 meters

Using a CREE XP-L LED the JetBeam T6 emits up to 4,350 lumens of light. With the powerful LED, the T6 has a maximum beam distance of 2.460 feet with a peak beam intensity of 119,500 candelas. The JetBeam T6 offers four brightness levels. The lowest setting emits 30 lumens of light, while the highest setting offers 4,350 lumens. The T6 also offers three special tactical modes: SOS, beacon, and strobe. Impact resistant up to 5 feet the JetBeam T6 is made from aero-grade aluminum alloy and features an anti-roll design.

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Thrunite TN42

ThruNite TN42 high Powerful Flashlight 2000 Lumens, Long Throw Up to 1550 Meters Waterproof Torch, CREE XHP35 LED Handheld Light, Powered by 4 x 18650 Batteries(not Included) - CW

If you are looking for something with a better throw and more powerful than the Nitecore TM36, the Thrunite TN42 is a great choice. One of the things that make this searchlight so great is how little spill the beam has and its ability to reach up to 5,000 feet. The CREE XHP35 HI LED is powered by four 18650 batteries. The Thrunite TN42 offers users five brightness levels, as well as strobe mode. On its highest setting, the Thrunite TN42 emits 2,000 lumens, while its lowest setting emits a mere 0.8 lumens. The Thrunite TN42 is controlled via a side switch. Like the Nitecore TM36, the Thrunite TN42 memorizes the last level used, but only with high, medium, and low modes.

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Nitecore TM36 Review Final Thoughts

If you spend any time exploring the outdoors you need a powerful searchlight. A light so powerful it will illuminate even the darkest night. The Nitecore TM36 is that kind of light. The light will fit comfortably in the palm of your hand, but also comes with a sling to make it easier to carry for longer periods of time. Now that you have seen just what the Nitecore TM36 has to offer why not head on out and purchase one today!

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