Solar Power Banks

Patriot power cell solar power bank

WARNING: Patriot Power Cell Review + The 4 Top Alternatives

WARNING: Patriot Power Cell Solar Power Bank Review + The 4 Top Alternatives

Patriot power cell solar power bank

Oliver

Written by Oliver. Last updated:

Overall Rating 6
Portability 5
Compatibility 6
Durability 4
Ease of Use 7
Value for Money 5

Table of Contents

As solar technology becomes more mainstream, we are starting to see an increasing number of portable electronics outfitted with fixed and fold-out solar panels.

One type of electronic device that has really embraced solar technology is the portable power banks and chargers. Today, solar power banks are essential for outdoor enthusiasts and a trusty tool for urban commuters who rely on their smartphones and laptops to get them through the workday.

These convenient devices store and generate electricity so you can charge your portable electronic devices daily, even when you do not have access to an AC power outlet. For others, a solar power bank is an essential emergency preparedness device that can charge electronics during natural disaster situations and power outages.

Patriot Power Cell Solar Power Bank: What You Need to Know

While all of this sounds straightforward, the truth is, solar power banks are now available in different styles from a wide variety of brands, which makes choosing the right solar power bank a fairly complicated decision.

To help you choose the right option for your needs, we are going to take an in-depth look at one of the best-selling options on the market today – the Patriot Power Cell from 4Patriots. Once we have determined whether or not it is worth the hype, we will also examine some of the best alternatives.

In-Depth Review of the 4Patriots Patriot Power Cell

Patriot power cell solar power bank

4Patriots has a well-established reputation for offering survival food kits and emergency preparedness equipment. Even though it is not a specialized solar equipment manufacturer, its Patriot Power Cell is one of its best-selling products.

Part of the reason for the Patriot Power Cell’s popularity is its affordable price point. To purchase one device, you would be looking at spending roughly $30. However, 4Patriots also promotes a bundled option where consumers purchase four units for just $100, which brings the price of each unit down to $25.

While affordability is always an important factor, it is not the only thing you should consider when researching solar power banks. We need to take an in-depth look at the Patriot Power Cell’s internal components and specifications to see how they compare to some of the other power banks and solar chargers out there.

Patriot Power Cell: Key Specifications

Battery Capacity 8,000 mAh
Solar Cell 1.5W
Estimated Wall Charging Time 6 hours via micro-USB charging port
Estimated Charge Time Through Solar 40 hours with bright, unobstructed sunlight
Input DC5V / 1.6A
Output DC5V / 1A, DC5V / 2.1A
Total Life Cycles 500 charges

Patriot Power Cell Capacity and Shelf Life of the Internal Battery

Battery Capacity: 

The Patriot Power Cell’s internal battery has a capacity of 8,000 mAh, which should be enough to charge a typical smartphone roughly two to four times. While this may sound impressive for a portable and compact power bank, it is fairly poor compared to the industry standard.

Shelf Life: 

In terms of shelf life, the Patriot Power Cell should hold a charge for three months. In other words, a fully charged unit can be left untouched for roughly 12 weeks before you will have to charge it again.

For perspective, some of the more rugged options, like the Lion Energy Prowler, have a shelf life closer to six months. Shelf life is particularly important if you plan on using your power bank as a source of emergency electricity. While the integrated solar panel can give you the option to charge the battery during a grid failure, this will only work if the sun is up and you have adequate time.

Ideally, your power bank would be able to retain a charge for a long period, so you could pull it out of a glove box or storage closet and immediately begin charging your electronics. Unfortunately, the Patriot power cell’s three-month shelf life falls a little short.

Patriot power cell solar power bank

Patriot Power Cell: Charging Capabilities and Output Ports

Charging the Patriot Power Cell:

When it comes to charging the internal battery, you have two options: either charge it through a micro-USB input port or with solar power by using the built-in solar panel.

Charging the Patriot with AC power takes roughly six hours, which is really very slow. Some solar power generators pack massive 1,260Wh deep cycle batteries that only take 2 hours to charge. To give you an idea of how large that battery is, that is enough power to charge a typical smartphone well over 100 times!

If you think that is bad, solar charging the Patriot’s internal battery can take up to 40 hours! That also refers to 40 hours of peak, uninterrupted sunlight. In other words, the solar panel is not going to do much to charge the internal battery. While it can be useful for topping up the battery in remote, off-grid situations, do not count the solar panel to be an adequate or reliable source of electricity. The truth is, the built-in solar panel is not efficient or powerful enough to be a practical power source.

For those that have experience using solar equipment, a 5” solar panel with a low power rating seems more like a gimmick than anything else.

Output Ports:

In terms of the Patriot Power Cell’s ability to charge electronic devices, it features only two USB Type-A ports, which is pretty limited, even when compared against the industry standard. Most portable power banks feature at least four USB ports. Most contemporary battery banks will also feature USB-C ports, which are required to charge the latest iPhones, tablets, and Android smartphones.

In this sense, the Patriot Power Cell is a bit dated. While you might be okay using an older phone or tablet, those with newer smartphones may need to purchase an adapter.

Our Overall (Honest) Impression of the Patriot Power Cell

Patriot power cell solar power bank

If you examine the Patriot power cell within the context that it is an inexpensive and fairly simple device, the Patriot Power Cell can be somewhat useful. It is small enough to fit in a glove box or backpack and can carry a large enough charge to keep your smartphone topped up throughout the day, but charging the internal battery through a wall outlet or computer can be very time-consuming.

In regards to its solar capabilities, the Patriot Power Cell is extremely limited. Charging the battery with the built-in solar panel would take multiple days, and that is assuming you live in an area that receives plenty of direct sunlight. Essentially, the solar panel is barely functional, and it is more of a gimmick than a practical feature.

What we did like about the Patriot Power Cell was some of the extras, like the fact that it has a water-resistance rating of IP67 and features a built-in LED flashlight. It also has a fairly rugged, rubberized exterior, which is great if you are clumsy.

Overall, we simply cannot recommend the Patriot Power Cell. In terms of performance and practicality, it lacks just about every department. With that said, it is inexpensive, so it is not an overly risky purchase; however, we would always recommend going with a more capable solar power bank from a recognized solar company. Spending the extra on a higher quality unit will ensure you have power when you need it.

Pros

Cons

While the Patriot Power Cell does have some things going for it, namely its affordable price, it lacks the storage capacity or charge capabilities to be considered a serious solar power bank.

We feel confident that there are better options out there that you should consider before buying the Patriot power cell.

The Best Alternatives to the Patriot Power Cell

Now that we have given our overview of the Patriot Power Cell, we can take a look at some more practical alternatives that offer superior performance:

While the Lion Energy Prowler does not feature a built-in solar panel, it beats the Patriot in just about every category. It features a much more robust internal battery that has a rated storage capacity of 74Wh – 20,000 mAh.

Despite its much larger internal battery, it only weighs 1.5lbs with a fairly slim and discreet profile.

Where the Prowler stands out is its charging capabilities. Like the Patriot, it features dual USB-A charge ports; however, it also has a USB-C charging port, so you can quickly and easily charge the latest electronic devices. On top of that, it has wireless charging capabilities, which means you can effortlessly charge any Qi-enabled smartphone, speakers, watches, and more.

You can recharge the internal lithium-ion battery using a micro-USB cable or via a USB-C cable which is much faster. The rugged exterior withstands drops, spills, and scratches, so it is the perfect device for campers and other outdoor enthusiasts. A powerful 9-LED flashlight is also a nice feature.

Overall, it is a great portable power bank that outperforms the Patriot in every category. While it does not feature a built-in solar panel, the Patriot’s is so inefficient and impractical that this really should not be seen as a slight against the Prowler.

Where to Buy

Check Out the Lion Energy - Prowler Portable Charger and Power Bank

Even though it features four separate solar panels, this portable solar charger from Hiluckey is still compact enough to be a practical on-the-go power solution. The internal Li-polymer battery offers 25,000 mAh of power, charging most smartphones eight to 10 times.

Where this charger stands out is its four foldable solar panels, which give you the ability to charge the battery from even the most remote locations. Unlike the Patriot, the Hiluckey’s solar panels can charge the unit’s battery within a day. It also features a built-in LED light and dual output ports.

If you are looking to go off-grid, the Hiluckey is a much better option than the Patriot Power Cell.

Where to Buy

Check Out the Hiluckey - Portable Fold-Out Solar Panel Power Bank

The BLAVOR has a similar design as the Patriot Power Cell, but it offers some much-needed upgrades. Not only does the internal battery have a slightly larger capacity (10,000 mAh), the unit features a USB-C output port, dual flashlights, and a Qi wireless charging feature.

Essentially, you are getting a more modern take on the Patriot Power Cell for roughly the same price. In that sense, it is the superior option.

Where to Buy

Check Out the BLAVOR - Portable Solar Power Bank

For Those with Greater Solar Power Needs

If you find that a handheld power bank cannot store enough power to meet your needs, you might want to consider a portable solar generator.

The EcoFlow RIVER delivers a 288Wh deep cycle battery with an average shelf life of over a year. What makes the RIVER such a remarkable little solar generator is how incredibly versatile it is. With various output ports and the ability to charge up to 10 electronic devices at the same time, you will not have to worry if your device is compatible or not.

The RIVER features three standard, wall-style AC outlets, a variety of USB and USB-C outputs, and a 12V car-style charging port. The unit’s impressive 1,800W power inverter means you can even power some fairly demanding electric appliances.

The RIVER’s charge rate is also incredible. Due to EcoFlow’s unique X-Stream technology, you can fast-charge the internal battery from 0% to 80% in as little as an hour. Given that the Patriot’s tiny battery takes 6 hours to fully charge, the RIVER’s charge time puts it to shame. You also can charge the unit in as little as 3 hours using two 100W solar panels. For those on the go, you can also charge the battery in your vehicle using a 12V charge plugin.

Where to Buy

Check Out the EcoFlow RIVER 600 Portable Power Station

While you might assume that all of that power and versatility would mean that the RIVER is large and bulky, it only weighs 11lbs and has similar dimensions to a basic toaster. A rugged exterior and a convenient carrying handle complete the package and make this an excellent, budget-friendly option for anyone that needs portable backup power.

Final Words

While the 4Patriots brand does offer some high-quality survival gear, their solar equipment is fairly dated. When it comes to both performance and value for this portable solar charger, you are much better off going with a device made by a specialized power storage company as opposed to the Patriot power cell.

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Average rating 4.6 / 5. Vote count: 9

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woman is charging her cell phone with a power bank battery

Goal Zero Sherpa 40 Review

Goal Zero Sherpa 40 Review

Overall Rating 8
Portability 9
Compatibility 9
Durability 8
Ease of Use 9
Value for Money 8

Aniket

Written by qualified solar engineer Aniket. Last updated:

Our Verdict

The mobile power bank market is full of reputed brands offering umpteen choices of products, making it difficult to offer anything new or unique in this segment. But Goal Zero manages to deliver a sleek and reliable product that stands out. The Sherpa 40 is a 12,000 mAh power bank that comes with three different charging cables that can charge almost any device.

Besides regular wall charging, the device can be topped up using solar panels, making it even more ‘portable’. With the Sherpa 40, Goal Zero chooses to go with a slimmer, flatter profile, making the power bank wider but nevertheless unique. Let us explore the product further in this Goal Zero Sherpa 40 review.

Compatibility

In terms of compatibility, the Sherpa 40 leaves no room for complaints. On the input side, it can be charged with a wall charging unit or solar panels. On the output side, the device comes with two USB ports and three different cables – a micro-USB, a lightning cable and a USB C cable.

Durability

Durability might not exactly be the Sherpa’s forte, but it does a decent job with the seamless aluminum casing. The cables are concealed nicely under the edges and do not fall off easily. Goal Zero does not mention the words shock-proof or waterproof anywhere in the description, but the device can withstand minor falls and some water splashes, although it would be best to prevent either of those.

front facing goal zero sherpa 40

Ease Of Use

The Sherpa 40 is a relatively simple device compared to the company’s other, larger products that sport plenty of ports. With easily recognizable ports and cables, you can usually plug-in devices within two seconds. A small LED strip with four lights indicates the level of charge, making it easier to gauge the battery level.

Features

While the feature list of this device does not offer anything that we haven’t seen on other devices, it does manage to offer the right set of features expected from a reliable power bank. Among the most useful features are its compatibility with solar panels and its fast-charging ability.

Design

Unlike the Goal Zero Sherpa 100 or the Sherpa 50 version, the Sherpa 40 uses a much flatter design that increases the device’s length and width. The result may have polarizing opinions, but this design may be useful if you regularly throw your device into a backpack. The color scheme is minimal, with mostly a single color all over with subtle branding near the edge.

Portability

At less than half an inch wide and a 12,000 mAh capacity that can charge 3-4 smartphones, the power bank is sufficiently portable. Its large profile may not make it easy to carry in hand for longer durations, but it can fit easily in pretty much every backpack.

side facing goal zero sherpa 40

What We Like

The Sherpa 40 is sleek, practical, and one of the most reliable solar power banks we have seen. It comes with good build quality and an elegant design. We particularly liked its ability to be charged using solar panels, making it portable in the real sense.

Pros:

  • Solar panel compatible
  • Fast charging ability
  • Three different cables
  • Durable casing

Cons:

  • May be large for some
  • No water resistance

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Average rating 0 / 5. Vote count: 0

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renogy phoenix 100 mini power station review featured image

Renogy Phoenix 100 Mini Power Station Review

Renogy Phoenix 100 Mini Power Station Review

Overall Rating 9
Portability 9
Compatibility 9
Durability 7
Ease of Use 9
Value for Money 7

Aniket

Written by qualified solar engineer Aniket. Last updated:

Our Verdict

The Phoenix 100 Mini power station by Renogy is around 6 inches and it elegantly bridges the gap between basic power banks and battery stations. It has a 100Wh storage which can be extracted as DC or AC, thus making it possible to power a wide array of devices such as laptops, Bluetooth speakers, and more. If you are looking for something portable, capable, and versatile, this product is a great choice.

Besides the versatility, the power station also comes with appreciable build-quality and well-thought design, such as the use of air vents. This Renogy Phoenix 100 Mini Power Station review talks more about these features. If this is not something that suits your needs, here’s a set of similar products we reviewed.

Compatibility

Whether it is an A-type USB, a C-type USB, or a mini laptop that demands AC output like a wall unit, this battery station caters to all kinds of needs. It can churn out enough power to charge up to 100W devices at a time. You can even connect multiple devices at the same time. The traditional USB port comes with 5V, 2.4A rating. The C-type port offers 5V, 3A power that can charge most devices in a fast manner. The AC port is a standard 110V/60Hz compatible and should easily be able to power mini laptops and other medium-sized gadgets.

image to show the powering options of the renogy phoenix 100 mini power station

Durability

Despite of its plastic build, the Phoenix 100 Mini is solidly built. The AC port comes with a flap that opens, protecting the insides from dust and occasional splashes. That being said, it is not a fully water-proof unit. On the operational side, it comes with overcharge protection, saving the battery when you forget to turn the charging off. The short circuit and surge protection also add to its durability. 27Ah in such a compact size is destined to heat frequently, but the clever use of air vents makes it less vulnerable to the heat.

Ease Of Use

At around 700g and with a shape that can be easily held in any adult hand, the unit is completely portable and easy to carry around. As far as its use is concerned, it has all the ports on the top end and cables can be connected in a matter of seconds. The AC port has an openable plastic lid, and any device up to 100 watts (with a North American plug) effortlessly fits into it.

Features

This battery station comes with all the essential features of any power bank, but it also adds some novel ones to make it a fairly unique product. On the forefront of these is the possibility of using both DC and AC outputs. The in-built inverter is used for the same, plus the overcharging and surge current protection make it stand out from typical power banks. However, a proper IPX7 rating would have been a great feature to have.

Design

Renogy goes with its signature black and blue color scheme with this power station. It has a square cross section and a grip to make holding it easy. The placement of ports and the air vent are on the end. There are tiny stoppers on the bottom end to hold the unit upright in place while providing space for ventilation. A blue strip runs around the box, and it displays the state of charge with a few lights on it. Overall, the design is subtle, attractive, and practical.

image to show dimensions and compact design of the renogy phoenix 100 mini power station

What We Like

Renogy’s Phoenix 100 Mini is a tiny power station that goes a step further from average power banks while staying equally compact and portable. The large capacity and AC output make it a unique and attractive product. The safety features are equally noteworthy and the design is just perfect. Almost 100Wh is a decent amount of energy and should last for a respectable duration, depending on what you charge from it. All-in-all, if you want a versatile battery station but don’t want to carry heavy boxes, this is something worth your time and money.

Pros:

  • High power density 21700 cells
  • DC and AC output
  • Overcharge, short circuit and surge current safe

Cons:

  • No water-resistance rating
  • Higher cost

We hope you liked this article. Please rate it or leave us a comment.

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 2

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Goal Zero Flip 20 Review

Goal Zero Flip 20 Review

Overall Rating 9
Compatibility 10
Durability 6
Ease of Use 10
Value for Money 10

Paige

Written by portable gadget expert Paige. Last updated:

Our Verdict

The Goal Zero Flip 20 is a fantastic choice for those who are looking for portable power banks. It may not be the most durable of all solar power banks, but it is certainly the most convenient. It has a creative design that allows it to fit in your pocket or purse, and it’s the perfect bank for charging your smartphones or cameras. This model also charges faster than most of the power banks we have seen. Take a look at our Goal Zero Flip 20 Review to get a better idea of what it’s all about.

Where To Buy

Compatibility

The Flip 20 is compatible with anything that can be charged with a standard USB cable. Its strength lies with smaller devices like smartphones and cameras because it will fully charge those (it can charge a smart phone twice with one recharge). This does not mean, however, that it won’t give your other devices a boost. This small piece of equipment can give tablets a 50% charging boost.

Durability

Durability is not this model’s strongest feature. While it may be able to take a fall or two, that’s not its intended purpose. It should be carefully handled. If you decide to keep it in your pocket, try putting it in your front pocket rather than your back pocket – this will help you avoid sitting on it. If you put it in your purse, try keeping it wrapped in a cloth or a case. It is not weatherproof or waterproof.

Easy Of Use

One of the best things about this Flip 20 is how easy it is to use. It has a flip-out USB, so when you want to charge it with electricity, all you need to do is plug it straight into your wall adaptor. There are no cables required when taking this on-the-go, and there are also no buttons to complicate things. When it is fully charged, it will activate just by being plugged into your device. Nothing else is needed.

Features

Aside from its best feature, portability, this unit has quite a few features that make it powerful and attractive. The design is unique, the colors are delightful, and we love the flip-out feature. Charging and low-battery protection are built-in, so there will never be surprises or unwanted shortages. You’ll also be able to tell when your battery is low so that you can charge it. And of course, one of the best features is that it is solar-friendly.

Design

This is a tiny unit that is designed to fit in discreet spaces. The upper and lower part of the unit are coated in a modern silver finish, and the middle is the matte color of your choice.

side facing goal zero flip 20

What We Like

Our favorite thing about the Goal Zero Flip 20 is its design. The small size does not take away from the large amount of power it provides for your devices. Its ability to charge a smartphone up to two times and give a tablet a 50% boost is extraordinary given its size.

Pros:

  • Simple/easy to use
  • Charges in 4-5 hours
  • Small and portable

Cons:

  • Does not have rubberized sides for protection

We hope you liked this article. Please rate it or leave us a comment.

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 2

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Goal Zero Guide 10 Plus Review

Goal Zero Guide 10 Plus Review

Overall Rating 9
Compatibility 10
Durability 7
Ease of Use 10
Value for Money 10

Paige

Written by portable gadget expert Paige. Last updated:

Our Verdict

The Goal Zero Guide 10 Plus is an extraordinary tool with an extraordinarily low price. With this charging bank, you can not only charge powerful devices — you can also charge (4) AA batteries. It’s unique, efficient, compact, and, best of all, solar-compatible. With something like this, you can power up pretty much any device you need. If you’re an adventurous explorer, this power bank was made for you. Our Goal Zero Guide 10 Plus Review can help you decide whether or not this is the right fit for you.

Where To Buy

Compatibility

This Goal Zero Guide 10 Plus is extremely compatible with most devices. This doesn’t just charge your phone. It charges your tablets, POV cameras, headlamps, flashlights, and any other device you need on-the-go (aside from laptops). It’s perfect for the traveler because it’s solar-friendly, which means it can easily be plugged into a solar panel and clipped onto a backpack. All that is needed is a USB cable, which is included. Keep in mind that because this model also charges AA batteries, it mainly gives your devices a boost. It doesn’t fully charge them. With a charging time of 3-6 hours via solar, you will be able to recharge it again before your device dies. If you’re looking for something that will fully recharge your smartphones or tablets, you can take a look at our list of portable solar power banks.

front facing goal zero guide 10 plus

Durability

With this power bank, you need to be careful. The clear plastic protecting the batteries is strong, but it isn’t bulletproof. It can’t be dropped into the water, and it isn’t immune to large falls or extreme damage. Care needs to be taken. As long as you make sure it’s clipped safely to your backpack or packed neatly inside your gear, it won’t be a problem.

Ease Of Use

If you’ve ever used a battery charger before, this will be very easy to use. The batteries are loaded into the front, the USB input is located at the bottom, and it can be plugged into any solar panel or electric outlet without any trouble.

side facing goal zero guide 10 plus showing the batteries inside

Features

This is an especially great model if you need batteries recharged for things like cameras or flashlights. With the swing of a small plastic door, you can easily insert the batteries and have them charged within a few hours. If you’re a travelling photographer who needs batteries for his/her camera, this is a good fit for you. It’s also a unique feature that we don’t see in many power banks. Not only can you charge the batteries, you can also charge your devices from it as well. The built-in flashlight is also a hefty bonus, especially if you’re using it at night.

Design

This model is small in size but big in power. It is black and silver with a clear, industrialized plastic door for the batteries. The silver is metallic and the black is matte, which makes it look modern. At four inches long, it’s also quite small, making it portable and convenient. It’s in the shape of a small rectangle, and the signature Goal Zero neon green logo graces its front.

What We Like

This is a wonderfully inexpensive alternative to regular phone or battery chargers. We love the fact that it charges both batteries and devices, because we know that some devices still use AA batteries and are not compatible with USB charging. It’s fantastic for polaroid cameras and adventurous photographers. It’s also great for those that need their tablets to journal in while traveling.

Pros:

  • Charges batteries and devices
  • Short charging time
  • Protective plastic door for batteries
  • Built-in flashlight

Cons:

  • Not weatherproof or waterproof

We hope you liked this article. Please rate it or leave us a comment.

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 2

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Goal Zero Flip 30 Review

Goal Zero Flip 30 Review

Overall Rating 9
Compatibility 10
Durability 7
Ease of Use 10
Value for Money 10

Paige

Written by portable gadget expert Paige. Last updated:

Our Verdict

The Goal Zero Flip 30 is one of our favorite portable power banks because of its ability to hold so much power inside such a compact unit. With a 2.1A output and a 7,800mAh capacity, this model has the ability to charge a tablet to full power. Five hours of charging will give you a massive amount of recharging capacity, making this a great choice for people who love the outdoors but don’t like to leave their devices behind. We have created this Goal Zero Flip 30 Review to show you just why we love this model.

Where To Buy

Compatibility

This Goal Zero Flip 30 is an extremely compatible handheld charger. It works with tablets, smartphones, POV cameras, headlamps, and other small devices. One full charge will get you 2 recharges on your phone, 5 on your POV camera, 10 on your headlamp, and 1 on your tablet.

man charging his phone with a goal zero flip 30

Durability

This isn’t the most durable recharger. While it can fit comfortably in the palm of your hand, that also makes it easier to drop. And because there are no real rubberized sides or ports, it is prone to damage. As long as its handled with care and used with caution, it’s a great unit. Along with the other Flip models, it’s important to make sure the USB is tucked safely back into the unit whenever possible.

Easy Of Use

As long as you’re someone who understands how to charge devices, this model will be extremely easy for you to use. All the knowledge that is required is how to plug things in. Two USB ports give it the ability to charge while recharging from the wall, which is nice if you want to charge your device and your Flip 30 at the same time. If you purchase a Nomad solar panel to go along with it, no other cables are really required. You’ll be able to plug it in with the USB and charge it anywhere (as long as you have sunlight).

Features

The features on this model are nice. You various colors choice to choose from that are professional and sleek colors. The ports are easy to find, and the flip-out USB is a creative and convenient touch. Our favorite feature is the 7,800mAh capacity because so much power is available. The idea that you can get an entire charge on a tablet from such a small device is innovative.

Design

This model in the shape of a thin box. The middle area is covered in a lush plum, green or grey color depending which one you buy, while the tops and bottoms are colored in a comfortable grey. The creators had portability as a top priority, so this model fits easily in the palm of your hand. It isn’t as small as the other flip models, but it also has more power than they do. The extra inch or two is well worth it.

a person holding the goal zero flip 30 in their hand

What We Like

What we love about this product is its ability to fully charge a tablet and to charge a smartphone 1-2 times. For a portable charging bank of this size, the technology is extremely innovative. The power that is housed inside the bank itself is unheard of, and for the price and the solar compatibility, this is one of the best purchases you will make.

Pros:

  • Flip-out USB
  • Charges in 5 hours
  • Compact

Cons:

  • Does not include a protective case

We hope you liked this article. Please rate it or leave us a comment.

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 2

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Goal Zero Flip 10 Review

Goal Zero Flip 10 Review

Overall Rating 9
Compatibility 10
Durability 5
Ease of Use 10
Value for Money 10

Paige

Written by portable gadget expert Paige. Last updated:

Our Verdict

The Goal Zero Flip 10 recharger is a great way to charge your phone on-the-go. Its tiny size and modern design are great features, but best of all – it’s solar-compatible. With only 3 hours needed to charge via solar or USB, it’s easy to grab on your way out the door in case your phone needs a boost later. With its extremely low price, it’s also a great starter charger for those who are new to solar. We hope this Goal Zero Flip 10 Review will help you see just how useful this power bank is.

Where To Buy

Compatibility

This model is specifically designed for phones, but you can also use it for headlamps, cameras, and even tablets. Keep in mind that even with smartphones, this recharger is meant to boost and not fully charge. With a smartphone, you can expect to get a 60-100% boost from a full charge of the Flip 10. It also has the ability to boost your tablet by about 25%. This unit is not compatible with the Samsung Galaxy S8 or with any laptops. Other than that, it will work with anything that requires a USB cable, and the cable is included.

a goal zero flip 10 charging a mobile phone

Durability

As far as durability is concerned, this recharger doesn’t really tick any boxes. The main point of this model is to have something to stick in your purse or pocket that will help you charge a device in a bind. It doesn’t have any protection as far as rubberized sides or ports, but it’s extremely inexpensive and will work great for its intended use.

Ease Of Use

This Goal Zero Flip 10 is one of the easiest rechargers on the market. It plugs into the wall (or your solar panel), charges in 2.5 hours, and can then be taken with you to charge a device at a later time. It’s handheld and extremely portable, which makes it even easier to utilize whenever you need it. You can even plug it into your phone and stick both into your pocket or purse – that’s how small it is. If you’re interested in a larger model, or in a model that will fully charge your phone (not just give it a large boost), you can check out our article on other handheld power banks.

Features

This unit comes in a variety of colors to suit your personality, making it a stylish solar option. At about ¾ the size of your average smartphone, it’s one of the most portable power banks on the market. On top of that, it can give give virtually any device a boost, including cameras and tablets. If you need to take it with you on a day trip where you’ll be outdoors, don’t forget to bring your solar panel so you have an electricity-free charging method.

Design

This is rectangular and small – about the size of a battery. It’s stylish with its multiple color options, and its USB port is located right at the top. When compared to other solar power banks, this one is unique because its goal is to match your personal style.

side facing goal zero flip 10

What We Like

Our favorite thing about the Goal Zero Flip 10 is its portability and ease of use. It’s great for beginners, and it’s great for everyday use. If you forgot to charge your phone for work the night before, just grab this model off the side and take it with you. It’s a perfect, tiny charging bank.

Pros:

  • Multiple color options
  • 2USB cable included
  • Portable
  • Fast-charging

Cons:

  • No side or internal protection from drops/falls

We hope you liked this article. Please rate it or leave us a comment.

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 2

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Goal Zero Sherpa 100 Review

Goal Zero Sherpa 100 Review

Overall Rating 9
Compatibility 9
Durability 7
Ease of Use 8
Value for Money 10

Paige

Written by portable gadget expert Paige. Last updated:

Our Verdict

The Goal Zero Sherpa 100 is a powerful product for professional photographers, writers, or artists. This power bank has the ability to charge laptops twice, including MacBooks, which take up the most energy and are typically used for editing photos and recording music. If you’re a travelling artist who needs to consistently recharge your devices, our Goal Zero Sherpa 100 Review will show you why we think this product is for you.

The Sherpa 100 is slightly larger than the Sherpa 50, but it can manage almost twice the power. With two charging ports and multiple charging methods, it’s sure to be convenient and essential on-the-go.

Where To Buy

Compatibility

The Goal Zero Sherpa 100 works with just about anything you need when you’re away from electricity. It will recharge your laptops, tablets, cameras, headlamps, and solar showers.

When fully-charged, the Sherpa 100 can charge a laptop twice, a smartphone 8 times, a tablet four times, and something simple (like a POV camera) up to 18 times. It can be charged via USB or Solar, and it’s most compatible with the Nomad 28 Plus solar panel. If you’ve decided to buy this model, that solar panel will charge your power bank very quickly.

Durability

With a boxy build formed from industrial plastic, this unit is fairly durable. While it isn’t shock-proof or weatherproof, it can withstand the hustle-bustle of the backpacking life. It’s also fairly portable, which helps when it comes to durability. You can sandwich it between soft items in your pack or you can cover it with some quick bubble wrap while traveling. You can also purchase the Sherpa 100 AC sleeve, which will help greatly when it comes to protection.

Easy Of Use

All ports are clearly labeled with the Goal Zero Sherpa 100. Whether you’re using a USB source or a solar panel for power, you’ll be able to easily locate where to plug things in. The fact that this model comes with its own cables is also extremely helpful. There should be no confusion about what goes where.

That being said, this is a complex piece of equipment. You will need to familiarize yourself with the display panel. The display panel will show you detailed port information, set roles for ports, power in/out, and how much battery time you have left. Knowing how much power you’re utilizing and how much you have left is essential, so be sure to read the user manual. The panel is the most complex thing about this power bank, and it’s quite easy to familiarize yourself with it over time.

a picture to show the dimensions of the goal zero sherpa 100 and its cables

Features

Perhaps the most interesting feature of the Goal Zero Sherpa 100 is the interactive display screen. It’s small in size (the unit itself is not large by any means) but it tells you a lot of information. From the display screen you’ll be able to see how much more power is needed to bring you up to 100%. On top of that, you’ll be able to assign a button to each port, set roles for the ports, and check the power going in and out. The screen is very bright when activated, so you’ll be able to see it in the nighttime as well.

Another unique feature is that this model actually has storage for your lightening, Micro USB, USB-C, and USB-C to USB-C cables. Not only are the cables included with your purchase, but the unit has little pockets for each cable. You never have to worry about losing your cables while traveling. If you’d like more options as far as features are concerned, feel free to take a look at our list of this year’s best solar power banks.

Design

This model looks almost like a WiFi router. It’s in the shape of a rectangle with ports going down the sides. With a matte black finish, it looks professional and durable. The built-in compartments for the cables are discreet and they fit in nicely with the design. There is nothing about this unit that is bulky or difficult to manage.

the goal zero sherpa 100 vertically stood up

What We Like

The best thing about the Goal Zero Sherpa 100 is its compatibility and longevity. Not only will it charge your most-needed devices, but it will charge them multiple times before it needs to be recharged. It’s tough enough to travel with you, but it’s attractive too. Durability and design don’t always coincide, but in this case, they do.

The reason why we ranked this so high as far as value for money is mainly because of the technology. The screen will allow you to customize ports and understand where you’re at as far as charging is concerned. It’s a great piece of equipment that is sure to last a long time, so it’s worth putting in the extra money. If you’re using the Nomad 28 Plus solar panel mentioned earlier, charging times are minimal. You can be fully-charged and ready to go after just 6 hours of direct sun exposure.

Pros:

  • Can charge laptops
  • All cables included
  • Interactive display screen
  • Modern and durable

Cons:

  • Costly
  • Not weatherproof or waterproof

We hope you liked this article. Please rate it or leave us a comment.

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 2

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Goal Zero Sherpa 50 Review

Goal Zero Sherpa 50 Review

Overall Rating 7
Portability 9
Compatibility 9
Durability 5
Ease of Use 8
Value for Money 8

Paige

Written by portable gadget expert Paige. Last updated:

Our Verdict

The Goal Zero Sherpa 50 is the perfect companion if you love the remote wilderness. If you’re the type who loves camping and hiking with electronic comforts, this is a must-have. It’s especially good for videographers and photographers who need their computers for editing when electricity is not available. We hope our Goal Zero Sherpa 50 Review will help in guiding you along in your journey to go solar.

Where To Buy

Compatibility

The Goal Zero Sherpa 50 is an incredibly compatible unit. With 12V, AC, and USB outlets, you can charge most units including laptops and tablets. It’s compatible with the Nomad 14 Plus solar panel, and when connected to that, it will fully charge in 8 hours of direct sunlight (16 hours of indirect sunlight).

When fully-charged, the Sherpa 50 will recharge a smart phone 3-4 times, a headlight 8-16 times, a tablet 1-2 times, and a laptop once. As far as compatibility is concerned, this product is very capable of providing all of your electronic needs off-road. You can also charge this with your car battery – a big plus that other models don’t offer.

woman using a goal zero sherpa 50 to charge her camera while taking pictures

Durability

When discussing durability, this is certainly not the strongest charger that Goal Zero’s products have to offer. It’s not fragile by any means, but it also isn’t protected from shock-drops, extreme weather, or water. When carrying the Sherpa 50 with you, it should be securely tied to avoid falls. On the plus-side, all of the outlets are well-protected and rubberized. If you’re looking for something more durable, this list will help you find something to suit your needs.

Ease Of Use

This model comes with an inverter which is great when it comes to power, but it is something that needs to be learned. It doesn’t always come easy to people who are new to solar. That being said, it’s also fairly easy to plug right into the wall or a solar panel. All of the ports are easily laid out and labeled. Another upside is its size and weight. It is extremely easy to stick this into a backpack or in a car.

man using a goal zero sherpa 50 to charge his laptop while working

Features

One of the best features of the Goal Zero Sherpa 50 is its ability to charge laptops and tablets. If you are traveling the world as a photographer or videographer, this model will provide you with the ability to edit and submit your work. Leave it out in the sun for a day or charge it in 3 hours with your car battery, and you have a full charge – hours of editing at your disposal each night.

Design

This is probably one of the sleekest and most modern units we have seen yet. Bright silver in color with all of the ports easily located at the top, this model is sure to beguile any solar enthusiast. The small size and weight add to its charm. While it may not be built for durability, it’s certainly built for versatility and convenience.

What We Like

Our favorite thing about this charger is how sleek it is in design. We also love that it has the ability to charge a myriad of devices in a fairly short amount of time. The fact that it can be connected to a car battery is also a huge plus, especially if you’re in a bind and need it charged quickly. This is a unique unit, and it’s sure to impress.

Pros:

  • Small size and weight
  • Can charge laptops
  • Inverter included

Cons:

  • Costly
  • Not weatherproof or waterproof

We hope you liked this article. Please rate it or leave us a comment.

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 3

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Goal Zero Venture 70 Review

Goal Zero Venture 70 Review

Overall Rating 8
Portability 9
Compatibility 7
Durability 9
Ease of Use 10
Value for Money 7

Paige

Written by portable gadget expert Paige. Last updated:

Our Verdict

The Goal Zero Venture 70 is a powerful charging bank. Not only does it have the ability to charge multiple devices at once, but it can recharge those devices multiple times on a single charge. It has the ability to work with wall chargers, USB chargers, and most importantly, solar power. This model is compatible with the Goal Zero Nomadic Solar Panel.

The best upgrade here is the smart charging sequence – it optimizes outputs to match what’s being plugged in (smartphone, tablet, camera etc.). This feature eliminates shortages that come from overcharging. On top of that, the IP67 rating makes this unit 100% weather and waterproof. For us, this is a top-of-the-line model. Keep reading this Goal Venture 70 Review to see why we love it so much.

Where To Buy

Compatibility

Like the Goal Zero Venture 30, the Goal Zero Venture 70 works with smartphones, tablets, POV cameras, headlamps, and other small units that require a USB port. It won’t charge something as large as a laptop, but with a full charge, it can recharge a phone up to 7 times. A camera will get around 10 recharges, a headlamp around 20 recharges, and a tablet will charge 2-3 times (depending on the size of your tablet).

side facing tern vektron s10 gen 2

Durability

As far as durability is concerned, this product is certainly top-notch. The manufacturers and reviewers boast that it can be submerged in water for up to 30 minutes before any real damage begins to set in. If you’re the type that loves water sports, there won’t be a problem bringing this along. Not only will it resist hard falls and shocks, it will also be completely protected by any water damage.

The entire body of this unit is rubberized, right down to the label on the front. You don’t need to worry about scratches or damage.

Ease of Use

This is a fairly simple unit to use, and it only gets easier the more you use it. The most complex part of this is the attachment from the unit into the solar panel. For the most part, the directions are fairly simple.

The front of the unit has labeled buttons, so it’s easy to find what port goes where and how to turn on the flashlight and battery indicator light.

Features

This is a lightweight, convenient unit. It’s fully weatherproof and waterproof. The 3-amp charge circuit prevents damage from overcharging. If you’re looking for other options with more or less power, there are 7 different power banks we recommend.

Design

This Goal Zero Venture 70 is built for aquatics, sports, and outdoor use. It is exceptionally durable and rugged, yet it seems to have a very stylish look to it. Like the others with this brand, its colors are black and lime green. It is small enough to fit into a purse or a travel bag. It’s also a great fit for the back of your fishing boat. If you require a slimmer and even more portable option, we recommend one of these three products – Goal Zero Flip 10, Goal Zero Flip 20 or the Goal Zero Flip 30.

side facing tern vektron s10 gen 2

What We Like

The best thing about this product is its ability to be fully submerged in water without any damage whatsoever. That being said, its ability to recharge your devices up to 20 times with one charge is also a phenomenal quality. You won’t find that with most power banks, which is a large part of why this one is costly. We believe it’s worth the investment and that it’s something that will last you a very long time.

Pros:

  • IP67 rating
  • Multiple recharges with one full charge
  • Well-protected with a fully rubberized coating

Cons:

  • Takes 12 hours of direct sunlight to fully charge
  • Not compatible with computers

We hope you liked this article. Please rate it or leave us a comment.

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 2

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Goal Zero Venture 30 Review

Goal Zero Venture 30 Review

Overall Rating 8.6
Portability 10
Compatibility 7
Durability 9
Ease of Use 10
Value for Money 7

Paige

Written by portable gadget expert Paige. Last updated:

Our Verdict

The Goal Zero Venture 30 is specifically geared towards the outdoor enthusiast. Small enough to fit in your hand or inside your pocket, it’s about the size of a cell phone. Its portability is an upside for anyone that enjoys hiking and camping. It’s a great product for people who don’t have access to electricity, and this Goal Zero Venture 30 Review will show you just why we think that.

This is a durable power bank that is waterproof and shock-absorbent, so it can withstand accidental falls, rain, and wear and tear. It can also charge two devices at once. This power bank is probably for you if you spend a lot of time outdoors, if you’re in an area that is generous with sunlight, and if you only need to think about charging a phone or tablet.

Where To Buy

Compatibility

This Goal Zero Venture works with cell phones and tablets. It will charge a smartphone 3-5 times, but it will only charge a tablet once (even if the power bank is running on a full charge). If you’re charging a small camera or a headlamp, you can also get about 5 charges on a full battery. One lithium ion battery is required (and included), so it doesn’t need a lot of upkeep financially as far as replacement batteries.

This unit is also compatible with standard USB charging ports (plus an extra micro USB), should you decide to charge it that way for quicker results.

Durability

If you’re looking for something to take on the trails without having to worry about how the weather will affect it, this is a great model. All sides offer protection because they’re lined with a tough rubber material, and it’s created with industrialized hard plastic. This protects the model from dings and scratches.

One of the main upsides to this unit is how rugged it is. It can withstand anything from dirt to snow, falls to rainstorms. If you’re camping and you accidentally leave it on the picnic table overnight, it’s going to be perfectly fine in the morning. It even works easily when wet – you can plug any of the aforementioned devices into it and there won’t be any short circuits.

goal zero venture 30 in water to demonstrate that it is waterproof

Ease of Use

This power bank is one of the easiest to use. There are 2 types of USB ports and 3 outlets, all covered in a tough rubber that will protect the circuitry. The unit itself is small enough to fit into your hand or your pocket, similar to the size of the older flip-phones.

One thing to note is that this particular model requires direct sunlight to charge. If you’re backpacking for the day and you clip it to your bag, you won’t get a full charge with it. You’d have to place it on a table or in an area that is directly exposed to sunlight. This makes it slightly inconvenient, but its durability and portability more than make up for it.

Features

The size alone is an excellent feature to have in a portable power bank. It’s lightweight (only about 9 oz.) and barely noticeable. The built-in flashlight comes in handy both on the trail and when you need to know how much battery you have left (the flashlight acts as a battery indicator).

front facing goal zero venture 30

Design

This product is designed for durability, but it also looks sleek and professional. The black body is encased with green rubber sides, adding a pop of color. A thin line of lights at top are where you’ll find your flashlight, and they also add to the quality of design.

What We Like

Our favorite thing about this product is the ease of use and its ability to be almost completely weatherproof. While it may be costlier than others in its class, not many solar power banks can boast about how well the device works under extreme weather conditions like this one does. We think this is the perfect companion for any outdoor enthusiast with no access to electricity.

Pros:

  • Weatherproof
  • Lightweight
  • Rugged and well-protected

Cons:

  • Must be exposed to direct sunlight for 9 hours in order to get a full charge
  • Cost

We hope you liked this article. Please rate it or leave us a comment.

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 4

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