At 1075 lumens from a single LED, the Coast HP550 packs a lot of power into a medium-sized flashlight. Like the HP14 we reviewed earlier this month, the HP550 has been updated, and has some pretty impressive spec.
The tail cap switch cycles through high (1075 lumens), low (53 lumens), and back off. There is no strobe mode, which many users are not likely to miss. It’s got a max beam distance of 1151 feet, which works out to 351 meters if you’re inclined to use the metric system. Coast’s Slide Focus and Pure Beam Focusing Optic are included, allowing you to switch easily from spot to flood by simply pushing or pulling the lens housing forward or back. We like the Bulls Eye spot beam, as it concentrates most of the light into a tight spot, with a second ring around it that allows you to see things that might otherwise go unnoticed. It’s a bit like having a spot and flood at the same time.
At 9.55 inches long, and 1.53 inches around (with a bezel measuring 2.12 inches), this is not a pocket flashlight. It weighs 1.31 pounds too, so you’re not like to carry it for the full 6 hour and 15 minute run time all at once. Coast chose to power the HP550 with 9 AA batteries, which they include. While this may seem an odd choice for some people, I think it’s in line with their strategy of marketing their lights to specific demographics. Using this very common size battery makes a lot of sense.
We really liked the output of the HP550, relative to its size. Most of the time, it’s used on low, but when we needed to spot something far away, having 1075 lumens at our disposal was appreciated. And of course, it has all the usual Coast features – durable aluminum housing with semi-smooth knurling for good wet or dry grip, O-ring seals, and their lifetime warranty. After we do our usual testing, we purposely abuse the lights with drops, full submersion in water, and generally careless handling, to see how they hold up. We have yet to be disappointed.
Don’t be put off by the $99 MSRP. Actual retail is under $60, making this light a good value for all that it offers. coastportland.com
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received the COAST HP550 Flashlight for free from Coast Portland in consideration for review publication.