TLR-7 Sub from Streamlight Full Review

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If you feel the shortage of options for your subcompact, then the TLR 7 Sub is your solution to this problem. This review will help you know what this powerful light is all about?

What is TLR 7 Sub?

The TLR 7 Sub is a light for sub-compact pistols and some full-sized ones. This light is compatible with the following pistols:

  1. Railed Glock 43, 48
  2. Sig Sauer P365 & XL
  3. Smith Wesson M&P (9/40c, 2.0)
  4. Springfield Hellcat(with modifications)

How does it work?

The TLR 7 Sub has a simple attachment system. Just slide the light to the weapon and screw it down with a coin/a flat head screwdriver. And the job is done. 

The intuitive switches of the Sub allow you to operate the light easily. You can activate the light by slightly pressing the switch downwards. 

  • 1 click is constant on/off. 
  • Press and hold for momentary. 
  • Double press for strobe.

To activate the strobe mode, press the switch 9 times and hold it on the 10th. After this, double-tap the switch, and you will activate the strobe mode.  

TLR 7 Sub: Specifications

Max Output500 lumens
Peak Beam Intensity5000 candelas
Beam Distance141 meters
Run Time1.5 hours
Weight2.39 ounces
Battery TypeCR123A Lithium

TLR 7 Sub: Features

Below mentioned are the features to look for in the TLR Sub. 

1. Compact and lightweight

The TLR Sub is compact and lightweight – perfect for a subcompact pistol. You can say that it is TLR 7 A in a smaller body. 

Also, it weighs only 2.39 ounces, so you don’t add much weight to your pistol. 

2. 3 modes of operation

The TLR 7 Sub has 3 modes of operation. A constant on, a momentary-on, and a strobe feature. The strobe comes disabled from the factory. It is an advantage for disorienting a potential assailant.  

3. Lumens and Candela

With a combo of 500 lumens maximum output and 5000 candelas of peak beam intensity, this light is bright enough for your defense scenarios. It can easily identify a target. 

You might think 500 lumens is not enough because of the 1000 lumens options available. But it is enough for what you need to do with a subcompact pistol. Five hundred lumens is not for long-range, but neither are the subcompacts you use it on. 

4. Beam pattern

This much output gives you a balanced amount of punch. It is bright enough to give a good blast of light without blinding the user. 

It is very bright but not too bright that it disorients the user. It throws a perfect amount of light both for the tight quarters and off at a distance. It also has a good amount of flood for situational awareness. 

5. Intuitive Switches

The SUb has easy-to-reach toggle switches compared to the older models, which did not have these switches. The users loved this change because it was now easy to reach and handle. The switch is placed right where the hand goes. The initial Streamlight lights had side activation switches that were difficult to reach. The downward activating switches of the TLR 7A were revolutionary for compact lights. 

6. Lockout Mode

The lockout feature on the TLR 7 Sub prevents accidental switches and saves battery. There is an On/Off marking on the bezel. Twist the bezel down to lock it. This feature prevents accidental discharge. 

So, if you are traveling with the Sub in your range bag, you don’t reach the range with a dead battery.  It is a wonderful feature for storage and transport. 

7. Good Holster Support

Having holster support is a problem when you want to carry a light with your gun. There is good holster support for both Glock and Sig models. 

8. Waterproof

Streamlight says it can survive in 1-meter water for 30 minutes. I tested it for 10 minutes, and it worked perfectly. I believe this is more than the time any light will stay in the water. So, it can bear water splashes of rain or an accidental drop in the dunk. 

9. Available in 3 versions

You have to buy the gun-specific model and not use it interchangeably. It’s a pro because the light fits well and a con because you cannot use one light on different guns. The 3 available versions are Glock 43X, M1913, and P365. 

10. Perfect fit

As there are different light versions available for different models. So, it fits perfectly with the gun. 

Personal Experience

I tested it at 75 feet outdoors, and it illuminated well. I believe this distance is what you use your pistol for defense. 

With 500 lumens, it is difficult for you to see all the details, but you can positively identify a target. However, you cannot make out if the person is holding a knife or a gun or facial expressions.

TLR 7 Sub Alternatives

Are there other options that can do the same job? The answer is yes

Below mentioned are some alternatives to the TLR Sub. Read it to know if they are better, worse, or just the same. 

1. Streamlight TLR-6

The first option would be from the same company–The Streamlight TLR-6. The TLR 6 is also a subcompact light but, at 100 lumens, has much less output than the TLR Sub. 

2. Surefire XSC

The Surefire XSC was released before the Streamlight, but the Sub is brighter, so it gives much better target identification than the XSC. 

3. TLR 7 A

The TLR 7 A is not much different than the Sub; both have similar output and beam intensity. But one major difference in Streamlight TLR-7A vs TLR-7 Sub is that the Sub is thinner. Also, the Sub has a slightly brighter beam than the TLR 7A. 

What can be improved? 

The problem with the TLR 7 Sub is that you have to buy a specific light model for your gun. You cannot use one light with different subcompacts pistols. Also, you have to trim the rail key to fit the Sub to the Hellcat. 

The other thing I wish Streamlight could do is come up with higher output without increasing the size.

Parting Thoughts

The TLR Sub is an incredible light with bright light and good situational awareness packed in a compact light. It has the revolutionary downward switches of the TLR 7A, which the users love. However, buying a gun-specific model can be a pain for some people, but it allows you to fit the light to your gun perfectly. And all this without breaking the bank. 


Does the TLR 7 Sub strobe?

The TLR 7 Sub does have a strobe mode that gets activated by pressing the switch 9 times and holding it on the 10th time. After this, double-tap the switch, and you will activate the strobe mode. 

Does the TLR 7 Sub have a laser?

The TLR 7 Sub does not have the laser. 

When did the tlr7 sub come out?

The TLR 7 Sub came out on January 19, 2021.

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Hannah Anderson is a gun enthusiast. She developed a knack for guns and ammunition when as a teenager she started accompanying her grandfather to his hunting ventures. Now, she shares her passion and immense knowledge on the subject with the readers.

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