5 Best Scuba Dive Lights & Torches (PADI Divemaster Tested)

Written and Reviewed By

A reliable scuba diving light is an essential tool for any diver venturing into the depths, diving at night, or exploring shipwrecks. 

The right scuba diving torch ensures clear visibility in low-light conditions, illuminates vibrant marine life, and can be relied on in the most extreme environments.

But picking the right dive light for the dive is a tough task, considering how many models are on the market.

As a PADI Divemaster working on scuba diving charters in South Florida, I am often times tasked with leading out wreck and night dives.

Drawing from my expertise, I have carefully curated a refined list of the best scuba diving lights, narrowing down the options to those that excel in functionality, reliability, and performance.

During the selection process, I considered essential factors such as:

  • Brightness and beam intensity
  • Beam angle and coverage
  • Battery life and power source
  • Durability and water resistance
  • Ergonomics and ease of use
  • Mounting options and versatility
  • Brand reputation and customer feedback
  • And much more!

In the following sections, we’ll review the top diving lights available.

Additionally, I will provide you with a detailed light buying guide and address frequently asked questions that come up when divers are purchasing a light.

Let’s see the light!

Table of Contents

Best Dive Lights and Torches

Best Overall

ORCATORCH D550

4.7
$94.95
Pros:
  • Lightweight and compact
  • Sturdy and reliable
  • Great for the travelling diver
  • Long burn time
Cons:
  • No indicator for battery life
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03/09/2024 03:22 am GMT

The Orcatorch D550 is one of our favorite dive lights based on a value perspective. For around a one hundred dollar price point, you get a well-built, compact, and capable light.

The torch has 3 modes: the lowest setting at 367 lumens and the strongest at 1000.  While the Orcatorch is There’s also a strobe setting. 

The light comes with rechargeable batteries that last for over two hours on high, and a seven-hour recharge time.

Product Specs:

  • Batteries: 90 min on high & rechargeable
  • Brightness/Lumens: 1200
  • Beam: 8-degree narrow beam range
  • Material: High-quality aluminum alloy
  • Size: 5.7 inch
  • Depth Rating: 150 meters
Budget Option

Genwiss Dive Light

4.1
$36.99
Pros:
  • High-quality material
  • Comes with wrist strap
  • Long lifespan
  • Bright LED illimuination
  • Five different strobe modes
  • IPX-8 waterproof rating
Cons:
  • ON/OFF switch can be sensitive
  • Poor battery life
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03/09/2024 02:25 am GMT

The Genwiss XM-L2 scuba dive light is a super bright LED dive light that can output 1,000 lumens of brightness. It’s heavy-duty and reliable, capable of being used up to 80m underwater.

You can adjust the strobe mode to suit your preference whilst diving. With 5 modes to switch from – high, medium, low, strobe, and SOS, there is a mode for nearly every situation underwater. It is perhaps one of the most versatile lights on the market.

Product Specs:

  • Batteries: Rechargeable battery – 30 min
  • Brightness/Lumens: 100
  • Beam:LED
  • Material: 6061 aluminum alloy
  • Size: 5.5 inch
  • Depth Rating: 80 meters
Luxury Option

Scubapro Novalight

4.5
$237.00
Pros:
  • High power
  • Focused beam
  • Highly durable material
  • Excellent depth capabilities
  • Long burn time
Cons:
  • Batteries not included
  • Expensive
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03/09/2024 03:41 am GMT

Where underwater lighting is an absolute must, the reliability, performance, and simplicity of the Scubapro Nova 850 Tec will never fail to impress. The rugged design of the single mode 850 lumen focused beam is perfect for lighting up dark spaces in wrecks, caves, and hidden crevices.

Made from heavy-duty aluminum this torch is lightweight yet built to last even the toughest dives. It has a double o-ring seal ensuring it’s leakproof.

Divers looking for a simple yet highly effective torch for illumination on both day and night dives should seriously consider the Scubapro Nova 850 TEC.

Product Specs:

  • Batteries: Non-rechargable & 7 hours on high
  • Brightness/Lumens: 850
  • Beam: Cree XPL LED and beam angle: 8º
  • Material: Black aluminum
  • Size: 9.6 inch
  • Depth Rating: 300 meters
Most Versatile

Light & Motion SOLA Dive 1200 S/F

4.5
$279.99
Pros:
  • Super bright beam
  • Wrist mounted strap for hands free diving
  • Three power settings
  • Factory sealed housing
Cons:
  • Less streamlined
  • Expensive
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02/19/2024 02:27 am GMT

Light and Motion SOLA Dive 1200 is one of the best scuba diving lights on the market at the moment.

Though coming in at a higher price point, it packs a punch.

The rechargeable batteries are inbuilt, so you don’t have to deal with losing them. Just plug it in to recharge – simple!

The downside of this is that at full flood beam, the battery life is just under two hours.

The light on the SOLA is super bright. The narrower spotlight beam racks up 500 lumens whilst the floodlight setting is a whopping 1200, enough to light up dives even in the murkiest conditions.

The design is not like a classic scuba diving light. It is short and compact and comes with a wrist-mount. This is ideal for scuba diving as it leaves both of your hands-free.

The body is factory sealed, which helps to ensure excellent water resistance. The large on/off switch is easy to operate, even underwater and in thick diving gloves.

It is a petite model, 101.6mm long, and weighs only 254g including the battery. This compact design makes it perfect for traveling.

Product Specs:

  • Batteries: Rechargeable Li-ion- 70 min high
  • Brightness/Lumens: 1200
  • Beam:Flood and spot
  • Material: Plastic / Aluminun
  • Size: 8 inches
  • Depth Rating: 100 meters
Best for Photographers

LetonPower TS Pro

4.3
$198.00
Pros:
  • Three settings: Cool/Warm White, Red
  • Good Price point for value
  • Rechargeable battery
  • Goodman-style glove and 1" ball joint for easy camera set-up
Cons:
  • Hard to focus the light beam
  • Lamp can switch levels is bumped
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03/09/2024 02:55 am GMT

The LetonPower Dive Light, TS S Pro is a high-performance underwater video light designed for professional underwater sports enthusiasts. With an impressive brightness of 13000 lumens, it can illuminate even the darkest underwater environments, making it ideal for capturing high-quality video footage or exploring underwater caves and wrecks. 

It is also waterproof up to a depth of 100 meters, ensuring that it can withstand the pressure of deep dives. The light can be recharged using a Type-C charging port, making it convenient for those on-the-go. Additionally, the light features a durable aluminum alloy construction, ensuring that it can withstand the rough conditions of underwater environments.

If you’re looking for a high-performance dive light for your next underwater adventure, the LetonPower TS S Pro is definitely worth considering.

Product Specs:

  • Batteries: Rechargeable- 120 min on high
  • Brightness/Lumens: 1300
  • Beam: Irradiation angle is 120 °
  • Material: Aluminum
  • Size: 5.3inches
  • Depth Rating: 120 meters

What Are Scuba Diving Lights?

Scuba diving lights are essentially underwater flashlights! They come in a number of different designs but many just look like a sturdy flashlight.

Vitally, they are water-resistant, as opposed to waterproof.

Water-resistance means that it can withstand the external pressure that comes from being submerged in water.

Items advertised as “waterproof” will normally survive brief submersions in water but are not designed for lengthy exposures to pressure at depth!

Also, they are usually brighter than your average flashlight because water is much denser than air, so the light does not travel as far. The result is a great flashlight!

They come in a variety of shapes and sizes and can be handheld, wrist-mounted, camera-mounted, or even mounted on your mask!

scuba diver with under water with a scuba diving light

Do I Need A Scuba Diving Light?

Blue scuba diving light next to the water

If you’re going night diving, it’s pretty obvious that you need a torch.

But…

Scuba diving lights are more versatile than you might think.

Many scuba divers love to take a torch with them on a standard dive during the daytime. There are three main reasons for this:

Peekaboo

On many dives, especially on wrecks and reefs, there are lots of little nooks and crannies which can hide all sorts of fish and underwater beasties. Torches are the best way to see these shy creatures, and it’s a great way of directing the gaze of your buddy or students without touching the wildlife.

All The Colors Of The Rainbow

As you might remember from your open water training, water absorbs colors. As you descend, colors start to disappear, beginning at the red end of the color spectrum.

So, when you’re 30m below the water, almost everything has a blue/green tinge. When you shine a torch on the coral or fish, the light source is much closer and less light is absorbed.

As a result, you can witness the true beauty of the underwater world! It’ll also help take your underwater photography to the next level, without breaking the bank.

Colorful reef photo with diverse fish and ocean life

Into The Caves

Lastly, cave diving! Whether it’s a tiny little cavern or a labyrinthine cave system, like the ones in Sardinia, you’re going to need a good torch!

Cave diving can be intimidating at the best of times, but having a good, reliable torch will alleviate some of your worries.

Scuba diver cave diving with a dive light

Many scuba divers also enjoy having their own scuba diving equipment. Many dive centers will charge for the use of a torch, so many divers see it as a worthwhile investment.

It is also one of the only pieces of scuba diving equipment that requires no training and won’t break the bank. Even if you never use it whilst scuba diving, at least you have an excellent flashlight.

A torch can be a useful purchase for any diver, no matter how junior. However, we would recommend getting some of the more basic scuba equipment first, like a reliable and well-fitting mask.

Dive Lights for Night Diving

Night diving is, of course, the main reason to purchase scuba diving lights. It goes without saying that humans can’t see very well in the dark! So in order to see all the weird and wonderful creatures that come out at night, we need a great scuba diving light.

scuba diver night diving with a dive light

At night, you are completely reliant on your torch beam. This is why it’s crucial that you are well-acquainted with your torch and know that it’s reliable.

It can also be a very important safety feature. A good dive light makes it less like that you will lose your buddy, or that the boat will lose you! It’s also a good deterrent for any sea creatures who you’d rather not get too close to…

There are a few things to consider when planning your night dive:

Destination

It can be beneficial to dive somewhere you know at night. If you’re familiar with the site and orientation, you will be more relaxed and enjoy the dive more! You will also know all the best spots for animal encounters and be less likely to get lost, which can happen much more easily in the dark.

Daytime Preparations

It is a great idea to prepare your dive gear during the daytime. There is nothing worse than hunting around the boat for your torch in the pitch-black when everyone is waiting for you!

Logistics

It is vitally important that everyone in the dive briefing knows how to communicate underwater.

It is also important that everyone in the group and on the boat is well-acquainted with the surfacing procedures, as well as lost diver scenarios. Not only is it best practice, but it could be lifesaving.

liveaboard can be a great way to try night diving for the first time as many of the logistics of travel will be taken care of for you.

Additionally, many liveaboards welcome divers back on board with a hot chocolate, which can only be a good thing!

Somewhere with excellent macro life and calm conditions, like the Philippines is a great place to start.

la galigo liveaboard sailing alone the coastline
Enjoy!

Night diving can take a little while to get used to, but once you do, you will be amazed!

You will encounter an entirely different landscape and different creatures than during the day. From hunting sharks to bioluminescent octopus and squid, there’s always something new to see!

Scuba Diving Lights: The Buying Guide

When purchasing a scuba diving light, there are a few vital things to consider. This handy guide can help you make a great purchase when you’re not sure!

Otter Aquatics buying guide for dive lights

Frequently Asked Questions

This totally depends on your personal requirement in regards to the type of diving that you are doing. As a rule of a thumb any scuba light with an average beam angle  between 12 degrees to 75 degrees and a lumen output of 200 or greater should work fine for most recreational diving. If you are going on deeper, more challenging dives that require more light, then it is recommended to buy a torch with a higher lumen output. Check out this YouTube video for more tips:

Extremely bright!  For the average recreational diver in good visibility warm water, 1000 lumens is probably as bright as you need.

Most of our dive lights on this list are at least 1000 lumens, including the Orchatorch D550

If you ever do go on deeper, darker tech dives, then 1000 lumens will serve as an excellent back-up light.

There are a few ways you can carry your dive light underwater. The first is by using a wrist strap to control your primary light. You can also tie your primary onto one of your D-rings connected to your BCD. Some lights also come with a wrist mount for hands free diving. For back up torches you should put these somewhere they wont dangle or disturb your dive, but also be easily accessible, your BCD pocket for example. For some tips on how to secure your dive light check out this YouTube video:

Just like most land based electrical appliances, regular flashlights do not do so well in water.

Scuba lights are waterproof sealed and are designed to withstand the pressure of water at depth. Regular flashlights do not have this same design and may short out if they come into contact with water.

Conclusion

After reading this guide you should know whether or not you should get a scuba diving light (you probably should), a few of the best on the market and what to look for when you’re purchasing one!

Which one did you choose?

Let us know in the comments below.

Now you have some lights, why not get yourself an underwater camera? Then all that’s missing is some action!

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