U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- XTech Tactical is known for their magazines and other firearms accessories especially those of the AK platform, but the team over at the innovative company has been working on bringing something new to the firearms industry.
Over the last two years, XTech Tactical developed an industry-first sensor-activated smart laser light combo for full-size pistols. At Red Oktober in Vegas last month, the CEO of XTech Tactical, Jeremy Deadman, asked me if I would like to take one home with me to give it a spin and let him know what I thought.
I have been reading the press releases about XTech's new Smart Laser since the beginning of the year, and I was really curious to see how it would actually work in the real world. I had some interpretation of the laser and wanted to see if my concerns were justified.
The Smart Laser is a green laser with a CREE XP-G3 LED light that can mount to any handgun with a Picatinny rail. XTech Tactical also ships the laser with rail mounts for Glock pistols. I decided to try the laser on my HK VP9, and my Glock 17 to make sure it works of both guns. My VP9 is my go-to bedside pistol, so it will be where I most likely will keep the laser mounted, and Glock pistols are the most popular pistols in the world, so I had to try it out on one of those as well.
XTech built in several modes into their Smart Laser. Let's talk about the standard selections before we get into what makes this gun light “smart.” I replaced my Streamlight TRL-1 with the Smart Laser to give it a test run. I already run an XTech Tactical 21rd magazine on my VP9, so this light complimented the mag.
The first mode on the Smart Laser is a standard always-on flashlight. The TLR-1 is a little brighter than the Smart Laser, but the difference, even though noticeable, isn't much of a change in brightness. My TLR-1 is a 300 lumens gun light. The Smart Laser outputs 185 lumens. For indoor use, this is more than adequate. In my house, it was able to light up every room easily.
The second mode XTech built into the Smart Laser is a strobe light. The strobe pattern is bright and flashes fast. The strobe pattern is quite disorienting. I am not a big fan of any strobe light because I believe it is just as disorienting for the user. If you are a fan of strobes, then it will work for you.
The third setting featured in the Smart Laser is the green laser that sits above the light. I love green lasers. Red lasers are not as easy to pick up as a green laser. The 515nm 5mw class IIIa laser that XTech used in their Smart Laser is of high quality. In most jurisdictions laser pointers (including for guns) are limited to 5mw.
At five yards, the dot is about 3mm wide. It is easy to pick up and small enough to know precisely where my round will hit. At 30 yards, the laser produced a dot that was 18mm in diameter. That still is pretty good and easy to pick up even in daylight.
XTech Tactical also designed the laser to be adjustable. The users can adjust the laser for windage and elevation. That is an impressive feature. It shows that XTech was through when they thought about the design of the Smart Laser.
The final two modes for the XTech Smart Laser are a combination of the light and the laser and the strobe and the laser. I ended up using the light/laser setting most of the time during my testing. I believe most of the users will also end up using this mode. I had a hard time picking up the laser when the light was strobing.
Now we get to the cool part of the Smart Laser. There are two auto function sensors on the XTech lights facing the shooter. The user can set the laser or light or both to come on automatically when one of the shooter's fingers break the invisible beam.
According to XTech Tactical, this method of use lets the shooter conceal their position until they are ready to engage a target. For example, you hear something go bump in the night. You don't want the home invader to see you before you see them. If you use a constant light, then you give away your position, but by using the Smart Laser you maintain the element of surprise.
I was a little worried about putting my finger on the trigger of my gun to turn on the light before acquiring the target, but I found an alternative method of activating the light. I used the thumb of my offhand to activate the light on the Smart Laser. I used it like I do the pressure sensor on my AR, where I use my thumb to turn on the laser/light momentarily. I don't have to worry about putting my finger on the trigger before knowing what I am shooting.
The user can also adjust the sensitivity of the sensors on the XTech Tactical Smart Laser. I am not sure why you would want to modify the sensitivity of the beams. XTech did an excellent job of setting the sensitivity of the sensors to work well right out of the box.
The Smart Laser's sensors will continue to scan for a total of 14 hours before it will turn off to preserve the CR2 lithium battery. There is an on/off button on both sides of the XTech light. Holding down the power switch for two seconds will manually turn off the Smart Laser.
Another cool thing about the Smart Laser is that XTech Tactical included built-in memory. Once the user sets up the laser/light to their liking, the Smart Laser will save the setting eliminating the need for the user to set up the light the next time it is turned on by the user. To me, this feature is where the real smartness of the laser lives.
The Smart Laser has a run time of 100 to 120 minutes when just using the light. The laser will run 160 to 180 minutes in laser only mode. When the user uses both the laser and light, the Smart Laser will last 60 to 80 minutes. These times are on par with other lights and lasers on the markets.
I put around 1000 rounds of Warrior Revolution 9mm ammunition through each gun with the Smart Laser attached. I wanted to see how well the laser would hold zero and to make sure it would stay attached to my firearms. The laser was able to hold zero on both guns. That was a concern I had going into the review. There was no movement in the light. With some cheaper lights, they come loose on the guns.
XTech Tactical set the MSRP for the Smart Laser at $179.95. The Amount of tech that went into the laser/light combo is impressive. I am thrilled with the light and will continue to use it for my bedside gun.
Readers can find out more about the XTech Tactical Smart Laser at www.xtechtactical.com
About John Crump
John is an NRA instructor and a constitutional activist. He is the former CEO of Veritas Firearms, LLC and is the co-host of The Patriot News Podcast which can be found at www.blogtalkradio.com/patriotnews. John has written extensively on the patriot movement including 3%'ers, Oath Keepers, and Militias. In addition to the Patriot movement, John has written about firearms, interviewed people of all walks of life, and on the Constitution. John lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and sons and is currently working on a book on leftist deplatforming methods and can be followed on Twitter at @crumpyss, on Facebook at realjohncrump, or at www.crumpy.com.