Signaling The Mothership: Streamlight ProTac 2.0 Review

Signaling The Mothership: Streamlight ProTac 2.0 Review

The Streamlight ProTac HL was good, but the upgraded Streamlight ProTac 2.0 is even better.

You might be a gun writer if … you have a collection of tactical lights by the back door to choose from when taking the dogs for a walk.

One I pick up routinely is a Streamlight ProTac HL. It was a high lumen (for the time) LED light that runs on a pair of 123 cells, and it now shows its hard use. The ProTac HL is an aluminum body with a rear button and the Streamlight Ten-Tap programmable operating parameters. I just stuck with the basic, so it’s instant-on “high,” a quick second tap gets me “strobe,” and the third gets me “low.” You have two other patterns to choose from if you wish.

I’ve used this one for years. I’ve dropped it on concrete, in snow, mud and water, and more than once held it in my fist as extra support in case I might have to administer a short course of attitude adjustment. It has worked flawlessly through a carton of batteries, but it’s no more an apex illumination tool. This one still works, but Streamlight has a new and improved one for you, the ProTac 2.0.


The new Streamlight ProTac 2.0 is made the same way as my old one—machined from aluminum, so it’ll stand up to use and abuse. It also has the Ten-Tap programmable operation, so you can customize it for your needs or uses. What’s different is the output—now 2,000 lumens—and the battery is rechargeable. My old one is a “mere” 750 lumens, powerful enough to light up the street, but 2,000 lumens is powerful enough to signal the mothership on final approach.

And the 2.0 battery can be recharged. Plus, you can choose to recharge it without removing it from the ProTac or remove it and charge it that way using the provided USB cable. Having run out of juice on night excursions more than once and needing to replace the dead batteries on my return, the idea of once a week plugging the 2.0 in to top it off is very appealing.

The new ProTac 2.0 is 2,000 “light up the night” lumens and uses a rechargeable battery that you don’t even have to remove from the tube to recharge. Life is suddenly much better.

The 2.0 is, like the HL before it, moisture resistant (no one can really say “waterproof” these days, regulations won’t let them) and will survive a dunking better than you can. It’s IP67 rated, meaning it can take being submerged in 1 meter of water for longer than you can probably hold your breath.


Giving up my trusty old HL is going to be painful, but life and technology moves on. And, in the case of technology, it gets better. After all, it’s dark half the time and dark indoors in some places. The 2.0 is better—a lot better—so look for one when considering your night-time illumination needs. Soon, my trusty HL is going to get relegated to backup duty.

Editor's Note: This article originally appeared in the January 2023 issue of Gun Digest the Magazine.

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  1. Having a collection of tactical lights by the back door for dog walks is a sure sign of being a gun writer! The Streamlight ProTac HL sounds like a reliable choice with its programmable operating parameters. It’s impressive how it has withstood various harsh conditions. However, if you’re looking for an upgrade, the new and improved ProTac 2.0 from Streamlight might be worth considering. Happy dog walking! – Mark


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