Wowtac BSS V3 Tactical Flashlight Review / A1S BSS TAC V2 vs. BSS V3

I’m sure that most of you are aware how awesome the Wowtac BSS A1S V2 tactical flashlight is.  The third iteration in the Wowtac BSS line is an excellent upgrade from the second version.  Most of the enhancements they made came from user feedback, making the upgrades even more relevant because they come from people actually use this product. Click Here to go directly to Amazon to check out the Wowtac BSS V3!



Wowtac BSS V3 Upgrades

  • Weight – The weight of the BSS V3 tac light has been reduced to make it a tad more pocketable. The BSS V3 weighs 3.04 ounces vs. 4.8 ounces of the A1S BSS Tac V2.  Not much difference but with more than 25% of its weight gone, I’ll take it!
  • Bezel – The BSS V3 has an upgraded stainless steel strike bezel which gives it more strength and durability.  The BSS V2 bezel is made from the same 6061 aluminum as the rest of the tactical light. The new stainless steel strike bezel gives you the opportunity to use this tac light as a small weapon if there’s an attack.  You won’t have to worry about breaking or damaging the new bezel, if you need to use it as self-defense or if you need to use it to break a window. I think that it’s a great idea to have sturdy bezel if you are using this tac light as an EDC.
  • Selector Switch – The new version’s selector switch is now at the bottom to give you easier access if holding the light like you would an ice pick.  The BSS V2 selector switch was at the top, just below the light. I didn’t find any difference between having the selector switch on the bottom vs. the top. Most of the time Im not holding the flashlight in an ice pick position.  I did notice though that if you are using this torch as a weapon, you can use your trigger finger to press the selector switch while holding it in an icepick position.
  • Dovetail – They got rid of the dovetail that was on the A1S BSS V2. That allows for much easier access to the back button if you’re in smash and flash defense situation. I’m happy they got rid of the dovetail, I like to have the on/off switch sticking out to make it easier to push the button.  You have to realize that most of the time you’re pushing the button with the middle of your thumb while wrapping your hand around the flashlight. It would be entirely different if you always turn on the light with the tip of your thumb, but in reality, you don’t always do that. Makes perfect sense to me!
  • Strobe Mode – One of the most significant complaints people have with the Wowtac BSS V2 is the strobe access.  The v2, you have to push the button three times to get the strobe going.  In the v3, you only need to press the selector switch once to initiate strobe mode.  I think that’s a great idea and a good change because using the strobe mode in an attackers face could be the difference between life and death. Quick and easy access is essential when your primary use for this tac light is in tactical situations or wilderness survival.
  • Battery – The battery is the same as the BSS V2. It’s a 18650 rechargeable battery. I like this feature because the coolest thing is that you can charge other devices directly from the battery. There’s a micro USB (Standard connector for all mobile phones except Apple) connector access point at the bottom of the battery itself. See picture below.  The cell also comes fully charged.  When you receive the flashlight, make sure to take off the little cardboard end caps on each end of the battery before use. I wasn’t impressed that my new battery was dead on arrival until I found the small pieces of cardboard on both ends. My fault for feeling like an idiot for a few minutes.
  • Red Lens –  The BSS Version 3 comes with a unique red lens, just like it’s predecessor, no upgrades there. The red lens is useful for people using night vision. I use the red lens in case of an emergency situation and also as a locator. If I’m out hiking and get separated from my group, I’ll turn on the red strobe light and point it towards the sky, making it reasonably easy for my group to locate me.
  • S.O.S Feature – The S.O.S. feature is gone.  They got rid of this feature because the strobe substitutes for the s.o.s. ; Especially if you insert the red lens and activate the strobe, making a great S.O.S. signal.
  • Price – The price of the Wowtac BSS v3 is a bit higher than the BSS V2. Most vendors charges between ten and twenty dollars extra for the V3 vs. the V2. I think it’s worth paying the extra ten bucks because it’s a tac light I plan to own for a long time.

Wowtac BSS V3 Technical Specifications

  •  LED: CREE XP-L V6 LED with a lifespan of 20+ years and runs on a Wowtac manufactured lithium Ion battery (3.6V/3400mAh); with a working voltage of 2.7V-4.2V.
  • In strobe Mode, the lighting output is 1150 lumens with a runtime of 2.7 hrs.
  • High Mode has a lighting output of 1050 lumens and a runtime of 2.7 hrs.
  • The medium mode’s lighting output is 208 lumens with a runtime of 8 hrs.
  • The Lowest lighting setting available for the V3 is 22 lumens with an impressive 2.2 days of runtime.
  • The peak beam intensity is 12150 cd (max) with a max distance of 220 meters.
  • The V3 is waterproof to IPX-7 standard with a debt resistance of 1 meter.
  • The impact resistance is also 1 meter.
  • Dimensions of the V3 are 139mm/25.4mm/24mm, and the weight is 86g excluding the battery.

How To Operate This Wowtac BSS Third Incarnation

To turn your BSS V3 on, click the tail switch. The light will be on High mode when you turn it on. When the light’s on, cycle click the side switch to go from the high, medium and low setting. Press and hold the side switch for one second to activate the strobe mode. When the V3 is off, you can enable the strobe mode by pressing the side switch. Holding the side switch for 5 seconds will give you a constant strobe light. There is also a low battery indicator.  If the battery power is low, the indicator light will blink twice.

In The Box

  • Wowtac BSS V3 (Version 3) Tactical Flashlight
  • USB Rechargeable Lithium Ion 18650 battery (1).
  • Charging Cable Micro USB to USB2 (1).
  • Spare O-rings (2).
  • Pocket Clip (1).
  • Red Lens Cover (1).
  • Stainless Steel Strike Bezel (1).

Conclusion

After buying my fair share of ten dollar tactical flashlights, I can say that this is by far the best one I’ve owned.  Just remember, you often get what you pay for, and that’s no different with survival gear such as this. Frankly put, at around 50 bucks, with a rechargeable battery like this one, you won’t be able to beat this flashlight with any other flashlights on the market for durability, power, and function. Fenix, Eagletac, Surefire, Nitecore, Olight, and others better take note. This product does sometimes go on sale so Click Here if you want to check the current price on Amazon. Read the reviews and you’ll see that the majority of customers are very happy with their purchase.

Please leave me a comment below, I always love interacting with the survival community!

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