In many cases, I'll buy lower end products if they're cheaper than name brands. I buy Walmart's "Great Value" brand all the time, because those products are significantly cheaper than the name brands. However, one area where I never skimp is tools. When I buy gear that I know I'm going to be tough on, I buy from quality manufacturers who support their products and have a reputation for rugged reliability.
When I was told I needed a flashlight that is NVG Compatible, I immediately thought "Surefire." For those of you who aren't familiar with the company, they make indestructible tactical flashlights and in my experience, they're worth every penny of their pretty steep price tags. The one I bought today, the G2, is one of their cheaper models since its made of high impact plastic instead of their more expensive aircraft-grade aluminum models. It retails for about $40.
They also make a wide variety of accessories, including different colored slip on and spring loaded filters, protective lens covers, and even Infrared filters. White, amber, and red light is not NVG compatible. I already have two Surefire lights that have red lights, so those were no good. Damn, gotta go buy another Surefire! I ended up with a spring loaded blue filter, which is NVG compatible. This is not for illuminating things which I will look at through the NVG's. Its for things I'm NOT going to look at through the goggles. The NVG's have blue filters in them, so they don't pick up blue and green light, meaning I can use the blue light without blinding the rest of the crew.
So, without further ado, here are some pics of the new Surefire setup with some of my other high quality tools. The new one is propped up on my Corcoran Marauder combat boots, with the filter open. The next smaller one is the A2 Aviator model, which puts out low intensity red, and high intensity white lights. The smallest is the L1 LumaMax which puts out high and low intensity red light. The pistol is my Sig P6.
And a close up with the filter closed.