Best LED Lanterns

In a Hurry? Editors choice:
Streamlight Siege
Test Winner: Streamlight Siege
Amazon Link
The days of fuel-burning lanterns and unscented candles are long gone. Step out of the darkness and into the light with a LED lantern. LED lanterns can be beneficial, and sometimes even necessary, in a number of situations. Be it a power outage caused by weather, a downed cable line, or camping in the wilderness.

Some people think that light is just a light, but you will soon learn, with our list, of all the innovative and techy workings of modern-day lanterns. Of course, each LED lantern will possess differing lighting capabilities, battery life, and compactness. As such, there are several that stand out and the following ten exuberate that very well. If you still find yourself feeling in the dark after checking out our list of the ten best LED lanterns, take a look at the Criteria section and FAQ.

Standout Picks

Streamlight Siege
With a max lighting output of 540 lumens, a night-vision and SOS flashing modes, and a stupendous battery life of 295 hours (when used on low), the Siege Lantern claims the top spot on this highly-impressive list.
Amazon Link
$33.95
Tough Light
This unit is a little different than other lanterns as it can be charged from any USB charger. This means disposable batteries are not compatible and depending on your preference, this can be a great thing or a deal breaker. But, this lantern is worthy of its name as it is constructed from durable military-grade rubber and plastic molds.
Amazon Link
$62.95
Black Diamond Apollo
The Black Diamond Apollo is a great option for a solid overall lantern. The Apollo is durable, easy to use, and has some practical features. It's not the brightest lantern on our list, but it has enough light for small and large groups.
Amazon Link
$64.95
Goal Zero Lighthouse 400
The Goal Zero Lighthouse series of lanterns have a very unique and appealing design. The 400 in the name indicates the max number of lumens that it can output. More than just a light, it is also a USB power hub.
Black Diamond Voyager
What is really fascinating about the Voyager Lantern from Black Diamond is that it can double as a flashlight. While it is not as powerful this way, it is rather convenient to have both a lantern and flashlight in the palm of your hands.
SUAOKI Led Camping Lantern
The LED Lantern from Suaoki is a durable, compact LED lantern light that is perfect to bring with you on your backpacking and camping adventures. It has the ability to fold up for easy storage. If you are looking for a lightwei ght lantern to bring with you on your next backpacking trip, definitely check this lantern out.
Amazon Link
$14.99
Supernova led camping lantern
Clearly, the stand-out feature of the Supernova best led lantern is its run-time. Designed as an emergency lantern, depending on the lumen capacity you choose, this can run continuously for up to six days.
Amazon Link
$37.80
UST 30-day led light lantern
With an impressive maximum light output of 700 lumens and up to 30 days of battery life when used on the lowest setting, it is easy to see why this lantern secures such a high spot on this list.
Amazon Link
Vont Lantern lights
As the reviews indicate, several users have expressed their affirmation of the Vont LED Lantern lights. Is it the most powerful and awe-inspiring lantern on the market? At this price, obviously not, not but guess what, it does not need to be.
Amazon Link
$17.97
Etekcity Portable
There is no way to mask the fact that this lantern is limited. Not only with its brightness but also its battery life. Although, for its designed purpose, many people will enjoy its convenience as a stellar LED lantern that will light up small areas.
Amazon Link

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Use

Depending on your needs, the single most important design aspect for a LED lantern just might be the maximum amount of light it can emit. But, what indicates this amount and what do you need to know about it? Several people may have been confused about why there was no mention of wattage in this guide. The reality is, as LED lights such as bicycle lights become more popular it makes more sense to analyze them based on their lumens. A lumen is defined as a measure of the total quantity of light that is released from a source. As such, this is the unit you want to become knowledgeable of.

But, what does 150, 200, 60, or 400 lumens mean to the average person? Could they not just tell you how much space it will cover? Well, they may even do this for you but just know, if you are looking for a ton of light than this number needs to be high. A good reference is to take around 30 to 50 lumens per square feet that you wish to be lit up. If you are seeking a lantern to read in your tent at night and want it to light your entire tent up, figure out the square footage and assume you need around 30 lumens per each foot.

Durability

While this section does not pertain to the lighting capabilities of best LED lanterns in any way, it glances at the bigger picture. No matter how great a light source is, if the housing that conceals it is vulnerable to damage, it may not last as long as it should. To no one’s surprise, this means that the construction is as important a design factor as any. Look for LED lanterns that possess a tough and rugged housing. For example, sturdy rubber and plastic molding. If it is capable of withstanding average-sized drops and bumps, this will pay off in the long run.

However, it is a safe assumption to believe that you will be utilizing the best LED camping lantern outdoors. They are not really designed to be used as a household item, even though there is no reason they can’t be. Therefore, it may also be worth your while to assess the water-resistance rating (if it is water-resistant). Most will simply be designed to withstand small splashes and light rainfall. In a downpour, these same lanterns may be vulnerable.

Features

LED lanterns are not just designed to output one type of light. Instead, most will come with a plethora of alternate lighting modes. Of course, this all starts with low, medium, and high lighting modes. Now, not every lantern will possess each of these modes but if they do, they allow you to fine-tune the light to fit your needs. But, modes such as SOS and night-vision can lead a helping hand in times of an emergency. Typically, a night-vision mode will consume less battery and an SOS flashing mode will indicate your position.

It does not stop there as sometimes, you can get LED lanterns lights that have special features such as an integrated flashlight and removable panels that act as individual light sources. If you had several people who needed light, having a lantern with removable panels would be ideal. Even with a flashlight, this would allow you to ditch your old one and use the lantern as one for convenience.

Battery Life

There is no debating the fact that some people will feel that the battery life of their LED lantern is the most important aspect. Admittedly so, this is not a bad mindset as you may not always be in a situation where you can recharge the lantern or may not have any other batteries. But, when it pertains to battery life a lot of it is under your control. Clearly, you can only run it for so long before the battery dies. Though the longer you run it on its maximum setting the quicker you will deplete the battery.

Hence, utilizing the low setting whenever you can is ideal to maximize the battery life. From lantern to lantern, no matter, this time will differ so choose a lifespan that better suits your needs. In addition to this, also assess how the lantern is powered. Some will utilize disposable batteries while others will simply need to be charged via USB. This can be important as you may not have the means of charging it a specific way in the wilderness.

Top Ten LED Lanterns

1. Streamlight Siege

Where to buy
Amazon Link
$33.95
Streamlight Siege
Amazon Link

With a max lighting output of 540 lumens, a night-vision and SOS flashing modes, and a stupendous battery life of 295 hours (when used on low), the Siege Lantern claims the top spot on this highly-impressive list.

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Lighting Prowess
With a max light output of 540 lumens and 360 degrees of light covered, the emanating light that this lantern produces is phenomenal. All in all, there are four white C4 LEDs and one red C4 LED lights.

Construction and Durability
No doubt, this lantern is designed to take a beating and remain functional. It has been tested to withstand impacts of two meters, has unbreakable polycarbonate lenses and is waterproof per IPX7 standards.

Lighting Modes
As a total, there are five different lighting modes for you to utilize. This includes high (540 lumens), medium (275 lumens), low (55 lumens), and red and SOS flashing modes. The red, or night-vision mode, can be used for emergency situations as it hardly sucks any juice.

Battery Life
To power this best LED lantern, you will need three D-Cell Alkaline batteries. On the interface of the lantern is a battery level indicator which will inform you of your current battery level (either green, yellow or red). If used on low, you could feasibly get up to 295 hours of use.

Compactness
As compared to other portable lanterns, this could be classified as a little large. However, at 1.9 pounds and 4 x 4 x 7.2 inches, it will still make for easy transport.

Overall
When it comes down to it, the Siege LED Lantern lights combines all the good things that you look for in this type of product. This includes its high-degree of lighting prowess, a plethora of lighting modes and highly-durable workmanship.

Amazon Link
$33.95

2. Tough Light

Where to buy
Amazon Link
$62.95
Tough Light
Amazon Link

This unit is a little different than other lanterns as it can be charged from any USB charger. This means disposable batteries are not compatible and depending on your preference, this can be a great thing or a deal breaker. But, this lantern is worthy of its name as it is constructed from durable military-grade rubber and plastic molds.

Read more

Lighting Prowess
When you need the most light this lantern can emit, it can dish out 400 lumens. While not the brightest on the market, it should suffice for most situations.

Construction and Durability
Being designed with military-grade rubber and plastic molds, this LED lantern can withstand drops of up to five feet in height. In addition, it is also water-resistant per IPX6 standards.

Lighting Modes
To maximize the battery life, you can run this lantern on low. Past this, there are also built-in emergency features such as an SOS beacon light and a red hazard light.

Battery Life
Even when you are not powering this light source, it can hold its charge for up to nine months. If need be, you could extend the battery life for up to 200 hours on the lowest setting (and 526 hours with the red hazard light). One negative point of this light is that it can not be used while being charged.

Compactness
Overall, the weight and dimensions make this a highly-portable lantern. It will not reduce in size, but this is not too big of a deal. The lantern itself only weighs 1.3 pounds.

Overall
For whatever reason, the charger that is needed to provide battery life to this device is not included. Problem is, it is needed as this does not accept disposable batteries. Notwithstanding this, given you buy the charger, everything should be right as rain.

Amazon Link
$62.95

3. Black Diamond Apollo

Where to buy
Amazon Link
$64.95
Black Diamond Apollo
Amazon Link

The Black Diamond Apollo is a great option for a solid overall lantern. The Apollo is durable, easy to use, and has some practical features. It's not the brightest lantern on our list, but it has enough light for small and large groups.

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Lighting Prowess
Given the fact that at its peak, this can only produce 250 lumens of light you may think this is only average in this respect. But the unique design casts an even, warm glow which lights an area well but is comfortable enough to look at.

Construction and Durability
The Apollo is definitely sturdy and well-made. It is splash resistant and will even stand up to some light rain.

Battery Life
The Apollo runs off of a rechargeable internal 2600 mA battery with an extra compartment for 3 AA backup batteries. There are two sets of "charge remaining" indicators that is helpful to for monitoring your charge. At maximum brightness, the lantern runs for 6 hours off of the internal battery and then will switch to AAs and run for another 18 hours. This is a great feature that allows you to recharge via an included micro-USB cable

Compactness
The idea of combining four portable lanterns into one is resourceful. However, this is a bit on the heavy and large side. At over two pounds and 7.7 x 7.8 x 12.9 inches in dimensions, you can see why.

Overall
The Apollo is a solid purchase for those looking for a long-lasting and durable LED lantern. It will last you a while with its great battery life, additional battery pack, charging port, and great durability.

Amazon Link
$64.95

4. Goal Zero Lighthouse 400

Where to buy
Goal Zero Lighthouse 400
Amazon Link

The Goal Zero Lighthouse series of lanterns have a very unique and appealing design. The 400 in the name indicates the max number of lumens that it can output. More than just a light, it is also a USB power hub.

Read more

Lighting Prowess
Due to its design, you can utilize 360 degrees of bright LED light. At its peak, this is capable of outputting 400 lumens of light.

Construction and Durability
The overall construction seems to be up-to-par but it is worth noting that the charging handle can be concerning in terms of durability. As one user noted, a heavier duty version would have been appreciated.

Lighting Modes
In times where you do not need all 400 lumens that this lantern dishes out, you can opt to merely illuminate only half of the lantern. You can make this adjustment in either the high or low setting.

Battery Life
When both sides of the lantern are emitting light, it can last up to 2.5 hours on high and 24 hours on low. This total gets more than doubled when only half of the lantern is illuminated.

Compactness
Because of the collapsible legs, it is easy to stand this lantern up and to store it away. As it folds down, it is also an ideal travel companion.

Overall
If you are looking for best led camping lantern, this may be the lucky ticket. After all, its unique collapsible legs, the capability of charging your USB devices, and ability to emit only half the lantern all combine to make it stand out from the rest.

5. Black Diamond Voyager

Where to buy
Black Diamond Voyager
Amazon Link

What is really fascinating about the Voyager Lantern from Black Diamond is that it can double as a flashlight. While it is not as powerful this way, it is rather convenient to have both a lantern and flashlight in the palm of your hands.

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Lighting Prowess
When in lantern mode, the dual reflector system maximizes the amount of light output. Overall, while not amazing, you could get up to 140 lumens of light on the max setting.

Construction and Durability
Some users have stated that they worry about the durability in the long run; but, its IPX4 water-resistance and rubber feet for stabilization are certainly nice additions.

Lighting Modes
Not only is there a dimming option available for you, you can utilize this is either a lantern or standalone flashlight. The LED lights on the bottom act as your flashlight and produce 50 lumens of light.

Battery Life
On high, the lantern will last around 13 hours and the flashlight for as long as 65 hours. However, these numbers are enhanced to 100 hours when used in low-mode.

Compactness
Black Diamond ensures that their Voyage Lantern is easily transportable. This is thanks to its collapsible design as it can be reduced to 105 millimeters in terms of height.

Overall
Several features make this a go-to lantern including its collapsible design and use as a flashlight. It is an ideal light to keep in your garage, car, backpack or office.

6. SUAOKI Led Camping Lantern

Where to buy
Amazon Link
$14.99
SUAOKI Led Camping Lantern
Amazon Link

The LED Lantern from Suaoki is a durable, compact LED lantern light that is perfect to bring with you on your backpacking and camping adventures. It has the ability to fold up for easy storage. If you are looking for a lightwei

ght lantern to bring with you on your next backpacking trip, definitely check this lantern out.

Read more

Lighting Prowess
This lantern has three lighting modes (SOS, high, and low)

Construction and Durability
This Lantern is built to be durable and able to compress which allows it to be stored and transported easily.

Battery Life
This lantern uses an 800 mAh lithium battery which is able to be charged through solar power, as well as through USB. When fully charged this lantern can be used for 5hrs before it needs to be charged again.

Amazon Link
$14.99

7. Supernova

Where to buy
Amazon Link
$37.80
Supernova led camping lantern
Amazon Link

Clearly, the stand-out feature of the Supernova best led lantern is its run-time. Designed as an emergency lantern, depending on the lumen capacity you choose, this can run continuously for up to six days.

Read more

Lighting Prowess
There are a few different options at your disposal; including maximum lumen outputs of 300, 350 and 500. No matter which, each lantern sports a convex reflector that provides optimal lighting and reflection.

Construction and Durability
For the utmost durability and long-lasting nature, this light features a sturdy rubber and plastic molding. Even more so, the lantern is water-resistant.

Lighting Modes
Not only are there three different settings for light output but there is also an energy-efficient mode. In addition to all this, the top can be removed for forwarding lighting.

Battery Life
For the 300 lumens version, the LED light can be used continuously for up to six days. Of course, the 350 and 500-lumen version will feature a slightly shorter time.

Compactness
The Supernova LED Lantern is a little bit smaller than other lanterns at just under one pound and 3.2 x 3.2 x 7.2 inches in dimensions.

Overall
It is worth noting that various users have questioned the actual output of light emitted from this lantern. Perhaps, it may be a little less than advertised but, it still remains one of the best options out there.

Amazon Link
$37.80

8. UST 30-day

Where to buy
Amazon Link
UST 30-day led light lantern
Amazon Link

With an impressive maximum light output of 700 lumens and up to 30 days of battery life when used on the lowest setting, it is easy to see why this lantern secures such a high spot on this list.

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Lighting Prowess
Indeed, at its highest setting, this can produce 700 lumens of light which is highly impressive. This is achieved via the three, 1.4-watt LED bulbs.

Construction and Durability
UST ensured that their series of Duro Lanterns, with this being the 30-day version, would hold up to the elements. Thanks to the rubberized ABS housing, impact-resistance, and IPX4 water-resistance, this is designed to last.

Lighting Modes
Besides providing you with the standard modes of high, medium, and low, there is also an SOS flashing mode. In an emergency situation, this will signal your location. In addition, it has a built-in recessed hook that allows it to be hung as a downlight.

Battery Life
If you really needed to, you could run this lantern on low for up to 30 days. Of course, the higher the setting the lower the battery life will be. High could get you up to 22 hours, while medium up to 106 hours. Also included is 3 LED light bulbs that will never burn out. This lantern is powered by 3 D-Alkaline batteries, which are not included.

Compactness
Much like the previous lantern, there are not specific design integrations that account for compactness. But, its natural size of just over a pound and five inches all around, it would still qualify under the word “compact”.

Overall
It is times like these where you just sit back and marvel at what you are looking at. A few minor, and yes, they are incredibly minor, caveats hold this back from the top-spot but alas, it is as amazing as it gets.

Amazon Link

9. Vont Lantern

Where to buy
Amazon Link
$17.97
Vont Lantern lights
Amazon Link

As the reviews indicate, several users have expressed their affirmation of the Vont LED Lantern lights. Is it the most powerful and awe-inspiring lantern on the market? At this price, obviously not, not but guess what, it does not need to be.

Read more

Lighting Prowess
There are 30 individual LED light bulbs inside of this lantern and overall, it can emit 100 lumens of light. Some users have claimed that the light is actually too bright to look directly at, but who turns on a light to stare at it? This device is not capable of lighting a forest but it will suffice for small needs.

Construction and Durability
Despite its limitation when it comes to lighting, the construction is as good as it gets. Being designed with military-grade materials, it packs a punch and can handle most backcountry endeavors. There is also a foldaway handle at the top, for easy carrying or to hang the lamp from a tree.

Lighting Modes
There are actually no buttons on the interface of this lantern. Instead, you manually control the brightness level based on the height. The more you raise the lantern, the more light will be produced.

Battery Life
Admittedly, this is another area where this light source is limited. As there are no lighting settings for you to select from, this will last around 12 hours of continuous use, no matter what.

Compactness
Thanks to its ability to be collapsed, traveling with this light is simple and one of its biggest selling points.

Overall
The simplicity of this lantern must be marveled at but naysayers will state, it is too limited when it comes to its lighting capabilities. There is no argument here but the reality is, it is almost perfect for minimalists.

Amazon Link
$17.97

10. Etekcity Portable

Where to buy
Amazon Link
Etekcity Portable
Amazon Link

There is no way to mask the fact that this lantern is limited. Not only with its brightness but also its battery life. Although, for its designed purpose, many people will enjoy its convenience as a stellar LED lantern that will light up small areas.

Read more

Lighting Prowess
With the 30 LED bulbs inside of this device, it is capable of releasing up to 60 lumens of light at its maximum setting. As such, it is ideal for small tents and areas.

Construction and Durability
Yet again, for its small shortcomings in terms of maximum lighting, the build quality is superb. With military-grade material and a water-resistant exterior, it is suitable for outdoor use.

Lighting Modes
This is another lantern that is designed without button operation. Once again, you merely control the brightness of it by adjusting the height.

Battery Life
Do not expect this to run as long as the top-end models on this list. If you were to use this until the battery died, it could last up to 12 hours.

Compactness
Being both collapsible and highly-portable, this is one of the high-points of this lantern. Seriously, this is ideal for camping, backpacking, hiking, and many other adventures.

Overall
This is one of the cheapest lanterns on our list and it is obvious why. This product may not wow you, but that does not insinuate it is a low-quality product. Calling it so would be doing it a disservice as for what it is, and was built to be. It is a great light source.

Amazon Link

Sources

  1. Eric Hansen, The Best LED Lantern,