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Keychain Flashlight…Nitecore Tube Review [Durable]

Are you looking for a durable light? Do you need a light that is small enough to fit on your keychain? Are you in the market for something that provides just the right amount of light? If any of these sounds like what you are looking for, you need to consider the Nitecore Tube. Keep on reading to discover why the Nitecore Tube is a light you need to have.

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

Keychain lights are another style of EDC lights, just on a smaller scale. Like other lights, you want to know what you are looking for before purchasing one. With the best keychain light, you want something compact. Designed to be hooked directly to your keys, you want something that can fit everywhere your keys fit. Weight is something else to consider with keychain lights. Being hooked to your keys the light will be carried with you everywhere you go. You don’t want something too heavy as that adds unnecessary weight. Durability is also important as the light is going to come into contact with keys and other objects when stored away. Used for a variety of tasks you need something that provides the right amount of light for the task at hand.

Nitecore Tube

Nitecore Tube Keychain Light T Series 45 Lumen Multi Color Pocket Flashlight, Black

The Nitecore Tube is a compact and durable USB rechargeable light. Made from polycarbonate materials, the Nitecore Tube is available in five different colors. The polycarbonate design improves impact resistant to the light and aids in the lightweight design. The Nitecore Tube features a stainless steel key ring connector. The connector has the ability to hold up to 77 lbs. without breaking.

The USB rechargeable light features a high-efficiency Li-ion battery with a 48-hour maximum run time. Intelligent protective circuit technology and a blue power indicator light that protects the Li-ion battery from overcharging. The high-performance LED emits anywhere from 1 to 45 lumens of light using one of three output modes. The wide beam has a 100-degree beam angle to illuminate your peripheral vision. A single button allows for one finger operation.


  • Polycarbonate
  • Momentary-on function
  • Variable brightness


  • No lock-out function
  • Need to shield light


  • Dimensions: 2.2 inches long by 0.83 inches wide
  • Weight: 0.34 oz with battery
  • Lowest Setting: 1 lumens for 48 hours
  • Highest Setting: 45 lumens for 1 hour

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Nitecore Tube Features & Benefits

NITECORE-Tube-Water-ResistantUser Interface

With the Nitecore Tube, you have a light that is controlled with a fingertip. The Nitecore Tube utilizes a single button to control every aspect of the light. Low output requires a single click, while high can be accessed with two clicks. Pressing and holding the button for more than one second allows you to enter into Momentary On mode. Variable brightness mode is accessed by pressing and holding the button for more than 1 second while in low output mode.

Variable Brightness Mode

One of the most interesting features of the Nitecore Tube is its ability to adjust the brightness. The light features two output modes: low and high. Low mode is a mere one lumen, while high emits 45 lumens. Sometimes you need an amount of light in between those two modes and that is where the variable brightness mode comes in. With the variable brightness mode, you can select the exact amount of light you need simply by pressing and holding the button while the light is in low mode. Once the light is emitting the desired amount of light, release the button.


The Nitecore Tube offers USB recharging, no more replacing dead batteries. The Tube comes with a high-efficiency Li-ion battery that can last up to 48 hours on the lowest setting. Intelligent protective circuit technology protects the Li-ion battery from any charging related damage. With the intelligent protective circuit, the battery stops charging when it reaches 100%. A blue power indicator light illuminates when the light is actively charging. The light goes out once charging is complete.

Social Proof

In reading through several review sites online I have discovered that most reviewers share my opinion in regards to the Nitecore Tube. In looking over the light and what features it has to offer I feel it is a great flashlight, especially for its small size. The light might not be as bright as others, but it allows you to choose the light that you need. Weighing less than an ounce with the batteries the compact Nitecore Tube is one of the lightest keychain style lights on the market.

While almost all of the reviews were positive there is no such thing as a perfect light. The Nitecore Tube has a few flaws that are worth mentioning. In my opinion, these flaws should not dissuade you from purchasing the light. One of the biggest issues was accidental activation. Many people report the button gets bumped inside pockets or purses and turns the light on causing the battery to drain. The second issue was the light itself. Many reviewers state the light shines up directly into your eyes, so it needs to be shielded.



Fenix UC01

Fenix UC01 45 lumen rechargeable LED EDC keychain light (Blue) with EdisonBright brand USB charging cable

If you are looking for something a little different than the Nitecore Tube, the Fenix UC01 is a great choice. Like the Nitecore Tube, the Fenix UC01 offers a maximum of 45 lumens. The Fenix UC01 doesn’t offer variable brightness but does offer three brightness modes. The high-performance LED is powered by a Li-polymer battery and comes with a USB charging cable. Intelligent memory circuit recalls last brightness setting used. The Fenix UC01 offers a stainless steel side switch and a battery level indicator.

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Photon Freedom

Freedom Micro

The Photon Freedom is a great alternative for those of you who are looking for a microlight with a variety of features. The Photon Freedom boasts an IPX-7 waterproof rating. The light uses a single CR2032 battery or two CR2016 batteries. The latter battery type provides a brighter light, but a shorter battery life. The Photon Freedom is built to last with an unbreakable LED bulb and a glass-filled polyurethane body. A single button allows for easy operation. The Photon Freedom features 3 brightness levels and an SOS mode.

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Streamlight Nano

STREAMLIGHT - SL73005000 Streamlight 73005 Nano Light Miniature Keychain LED Flashlight, Red - 10 Lumens

If you prefer a keychain style light that has amazing beam performance you need to consider the Streamlight Nano. The body is made from machined aircraft aluminum with a parabolic shaped LED area. The LED area is designed to provide the best beam performance, no worries about blinding yourself with unshielded light. The Streamlight Nano uses 4 IEC-LR41 coin batteries to provide 10 lumens of light. The batteries provide up to 8 hours of run time, but brightness will decline as the battery drains.

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Nitecore Tube Final Thoughts

For those who want an EDC style light they can easily carry in their pocket, keychain style lights are an excellent choice. The Nitecore Tube offers a compact and lightweight design making it easy to carry. The USB rechargeable light has a maximum runtime of 48 hours on its lowest setting. With variable brightness the Nitecore Tube allows you to choose the amount of light needed with just the push of a button. Now that you know what the Nitecore Tube has to offer go and purchase one today.

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