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  • Great for USB, not so good for laptops

    posted by arthurfsv on 04/18/2013
    2 0

    Involvement:Novice  (still getting used to it) - Ownership:1 day to 1 week

    Pros:

    As written in the description, it is portable, so you won't need plugs aroud to find energy source.
    It is a very useful device to recharge your usb stuff, since they don't require huge amounts of energy.
    Using only sunlight is very useful specially if you spend time out of home, going to places away from cities, etc.
    Build quality is very good and uses 5 LEDs indicators to show battery status and 1 LED to show if is being charged by light.
    Battery lasts long enough to recharge your USB stuff many times.

    Cons:

    Definetly it charges very slowly at sunlight. I'll test it and upload a video with this information.
    Regarding the "laptop" propaganda, I was a bit disappointed.
    It does not make miracles: modern computers are very sensitive to wattage changes (as my Dell Inspiron 14R) and will warn you that something is not working well. It works as if plugged, but the system will stop charging laptop battery.
    Will also prevent depletion of main battery, but won't last for more than 2 hours when fully charged (See Other thoughts).
    May not come with a fittable laptop plug. I had to buy a bigger one in a chinese store.
    Makes a strange buzz when connected to computer.
    High price.

    OtherThoughts:

    Small devices (cell phones, cameras) use less energy, so you can recharge them several times and save the external battery for needed moments.
    My laptop consumed a full charge (configured with maximum power and wireless) in a period of 1 hour and 25 minutes. As USB charger it works great. However, you can find cheaper and alternative chargers only for your USB devices. It won't be a useful solution for laptop unless you spend a lot of time away from civilization. The most useful function of this product (I think) is avoid using common energy sources and open ways for alternative ones, but this product isn't enough to maintain a laptop turned on for significant times. Anyway, if you REALLY need to extend your computer's battery duration, get those higher capacity auxiliary batteries.

    Bottomline:

    I'd recommend this IF:
    You use cameras, cell phones and USB rechargeable stuff, things that can go out of power unexpectedly, it's a good deal. If you go out for quick jobs (about 3 or 4 hours) away from energy sources, it's good to use it as external battery for laptop. Even if you think you are in this group, consider buying a charger only with USB. They are probably easier to carry and cheaper.

    I would NOT recommend this IF:
    You want to save the world from global warming, thinking that will never use a switch plug again to energize your equipments. This is very useful, but it's not a futuristic power plant. (For a moment I though belonged to this group, maybe that's why I'm a bit disappointed).

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