In the summer of 2017 I bought the Ghost Vapor GVX-8700 Tactical Flashlight and put it through my litany of tests to see if it really stood up to all of the great reviews on Amazon.
Anatomy of the Ghost Vapor GVX-8700
The Ghost Vapor GVX-8700 is right in the middle of the pack when it comes to tactical flashlight sizes. It measures in at 5.5 inches in length which extends to 6.25 inches when the adjustable focus is pulled out. The 3/4″ adjustable focus is average for this size flashlight, and let’s you focus the large lens. The width is 1 inch in diameter around the handle and 1.2 inches around the head of the flashlight.
The weight of the Ghost Vapor is actually tied for the highest (Uonline) of the tactical flashlights we reviewed. The total weight with a 18650 battery installed was 6.7 ounces. The average weight was 5 ounces, so this model carries an extra 33% of weight. While the weight does make it a little less ideal for tactical carry, it is ideal for self defense. With the included strap and flashlight size, the Ghost Vapor makes a great weapon for fending of attackers. While I didn’t let my wife try it out on me, I did slap it on my leg one day and holy moly that hurt.
The GVX-8700 comes with a battery tray for 3 AAA batteries, however it can also use a 18650 battery. Because of the larger handle size, the interior diameter of the flashlight is too large for the 18650 battery. This is why the flashlight also comes with an expansion tube which helps the battery fit perfectly. I tested the Ghost Vapor with an 18650 battery and measured a power draw of 1.1 amps on high mode. With this power draw and a 2000mAh battery, you can expect a run time of about 1 hours and 45 minutes. Using the 3 AAA batteries, you can expect about an hour of run time. Compared to similar sized flashlights (Peakplus, URpower), the Ghost Vapor actually draws less power and can outlast battery life by about 15 additional minutes which can be very impactful in survival or tactical situations.
The Ghost Vapor includes 5 operation modes – High, Mid, Low, Strobe and SOS. The tail cap button is easy to operate and resets back to high when the light is off for more than 10 seconds. The mid light mode is useful for saving battery but still having good visibility. Low mode however has too little light to make it very effective. The strobe mode is great for deterring would be attackers (blind them with the strobe and then swing the flashlight as a weapon).
Also included is a carrying strap with is approximately 6 inches long and connects to the rear tail cap. Since the Ghost Vapor is larger, it’s not ideal for pocket carry but would work well in a belt holster or carried in a backpack.
The Light Tests
The Ghost Vapor GVX-8700 lead the pack with respect to its light output when used in close quarters. In my “light the path” test, the Ghost Vapor covered approximately 60.48 sqft or 7 feet wide by 11″ long. This is close the double the average lighted area we saw during all of our tactical flashlight reviews in this price range (33 sqft). This is a direct result of the large head which casts a wide beam.
The distance tests was not as impressive as the “light the path” test. In the photo below you can see the light output at a distance of 40 yards. Given the shorter adjustable focus and lower wattage bulb, the GVX-8700 has a shorter overall effective distance than it’s closest competitors (Refun E6). I would say this flashlight is most effective within distances of about 60 yards. Outside of that distance the beam gets too wide and too dim to clearly see objects.
The Final Conclusion
The Ghost Vapor GVX-8700 is without question a very solid tactical flashlight. It excels in ground coverage in close quarters and is ideal for self defense. Overall I am giving this flashlight 8 starts out of 10.