Review: Streamlight Wedge XT

The Streamlight Wedge XT is the newest addition to Streamlight’s Wedge line of rechargeable EDC lights. The Wedge line is known for its knife-like form factor that makes carrying them a breeze and the Wedge XT leans even harder into that by being the most compact version to date.

Great Light, Dumb Takes

I’ve seen some weird, whiny takes on this light from other reviewers. In some ways, it is a major departure from the original Wedge which might be why some people seem to misunderstand how good this light is. It does away with the lever-style switch of the original in favor of a tail switch and it cuts the output in half… neither of which bothers me.

The tail switch is a massive upgrade in my opinion. It makes the light dead-simple to operate with basically the same UI as the venerable Micro and Macro Stream flashlights. Almost all of the modern techniques to use a flashlight with a firearm are built around a simple tail switch interface so, to my mind, this is a huge upgrade. The level style switch is what PREVENTED me from even considering the previous versions of the Wedge. The tail switch won me over.

The output being cut in half is also not an issue for me. 500 lumens for 2 hours is a lot of light for a long time. As lights get smaller, manufacturers tend to dial the output back. It’s a tale as old as time. It’s expected. I actually find 500 lumens for 2 hours, instead of the typical 1 hour for most lights on high, to be impressive.

I think a lot of complaining about this light comes from a different perspective. If you are a flashlight nerd first (I use that term lovingly), I can understand mourning the loss of your pet fidgety switch and lamenting less lumens. If you want a functional light to carry alongside other defensive tools, you likely won’t care.

I should also mention that the Wedge XT is USB-C compatible. I think that is also a major upgrade. Micro-USB, with its fragile connectors, needs to go away at this point. Streamlight has been moving basically all of their rechargeable to USB-C and that is a welcome change.

The Shape of Things to Come

When I first took on the Wedge XT for review I thought it would just be like the Streamlight Macrostream and in terms of output and UI, it is similar. I was completely taken off guard by how much the shape of this light would play into its usefulness.

The flat(ish) shape makes it ride in the pocket more like the very slim Streamlight Microstream. It disappears in the pocket. It is light that you can carry when you don’t think you can carry a light.

That same flat(ish) shape makes it easy to pack in something like a pouch. I run, walk, and hike multiple times a week with something like a Hill People Gear Kit Bag or some kind of fanny pack. This shape is IDEAL for these pouches where items in the pouch often end up layered on top of each other. A barrel-shaped light, in these pouches, can use up a lot of space and really push into other items.

I also like the subtle “hook” shape with knife-like jumping that Streamlight incorporated into the tail of the light. It is very easy to take the light out from wherever it is stored thanks to this.

General Observations and Potential Improvements

The Wedge XT has a very floody beam. There is a hotspot but it is wide and tapers gradually to a bright spill beam. Streamlight claims 87 meters of throw and, in my testing, that is optimistic. It might brute force its way there but this is not a portable spotlight. The beam shape is ideal for most people’s EDC tasks.

The switch used on the Wedge XT is good but could be better. On one hand, it is easy to use and requires a long travel to activate which I like. I also like the subtle tactile feedback it gives when it hits the point that the light activates. However, I wish that it was pressure-sensitive, where a partial press would activate the light momentarily, like the switch on the Microstream.

Finally, the clip is great in that it is very secure and shaped well so it doesn’t catch on stuff. It is affixed to the light in a bezel-down carry configuration which I normally prefer. However, a light like this would be great if it could be clipped to your ball cap. Either a two-way clip or a bezel-up option would have been great.

Wrap Up

Don’t let the flashlight nerd lamentations scare you away from this light. The Wedge XT is the RIGHT direction for the Wedge line. It is an excellent light and a triumph of design. The shape of this light serves a purpose and the new functional changes make this a legitimately good EDC light.

This light is easy to use, easy to carry, offers a very useful beam shape with plenty of output for plenty of time, and wraps it all up into a very tidy package. It’s in my pocket right now.

Streamlight Wedge XT on

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