RavPower Pow­er­Sta­tion Se­ries

£99 inc VAT • ravpower.com/en

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You know those portable power banks you carry in a pocket and have just about enough juice to fill up your phone, but then you for­get to re­fill them and they are quickly lost, pinched or for­got­ten about? This isn’t one of those power banks. Not even close. The RavPower Pow­er­Sta­tion Se­ries 20,100mAh Portable Power Out­let sits at the op­po­site end of the power bank mar­ket, and with a £99 ask­ing price it’s not for those who sim­ply want their iPhone to last a full work­ing day. Though keep­ing your iPhone go­ing sev­eral days is one of many strings in its bow, the RavPower is to­tally OTT for that. Let’s start with the ob­vi­ous: at 146x69x69mm this power bank isn’t go­ing to fit in any­one’s pocket. RavPower in­stead sup­plies a soft mesh case for car­ry­ing the power bank and nec­es­sary ca­bles, plus a tough zip-up case that can hold it and the re­quired ex­ter­nal DC charger. We also found a cara­biner clip in the box, which can be at­tached to the strap on the case. There are two rea­sons for its size: first, it is a huge ca­pac­ity 20,100mAh (74.37Wh) power bank with enough juice

to fill an iPhone 7 six times, a Galaxy S7 4.5 times, or even a 12in MacBook 1.3 times; sec­ond, there’s lots of clever charg­ing tech inside.

The key dif­fer­ence be­tween this power bank and those that cost a fifth of the RavPower’s price is the 65W three-pin AC out­let and 19V/1.6A DC in­put. It might have a huge ca­pac­ity, but over the DC in­put it will charge in just four hours. By com­par­i­son a stan­dard power bank of this ca­pac­ity would take at least 10 hours to re­fill. Mean­while, the plug socket on top lets you plug in and power any­thing from drones and ac­tion cam­eras to print­ers and lap­tops, pro­vided they draw less than 65W.

This is the sec­ond 65W AC/DC power bank we’ve re­viewed (see our Om­nicharge re­view at tinyurl.com/jL97mk5), but the first to come with a UK three-pin plug. An adap­tor is also sup­plied in the box if you live or will be us­ing the RavPower out­side the UK. You can also buy 100W AC/DC power banks, but ex­pect these to cost more.

The AC out­let is an emerg­ing technology for power banks, but cur­rently priced out of many peo­ple’s bud­gets. That’s a shame, be­cause with it a power bank is able to do a lot more than power a phone, tablet, smart­watch, cam­era or USB-C lap­top. An AC out­let can be used for any type of de­vice with a plug, but when it comes to de­vices that charge over USB car­ry­ing a sim­ple ca­ble is much more ap­peal­ing than an en­tire power sup­ply.

For phones, tablets and other USB gad­gets there are two USB out­puts: one USB-C, which runs at 5V/3A, and one 5V/2.4A iS­mart USB out­put. Slightly dis­ap­point­ing is the fact the two ca­bles sup­plied in the box are both USB- to Mi­cro-USB and not USB-

to USB-C or USB-C to USB-C. There’s no sup­port for Quick Charge but both are fast-charg­ing ports, with the iS­mart out­put able tor recog­nise the type of de­vice plugged in and de­liver only so much power as it re­quires.

To switch from USB power to the AC out­let you sim­ply press and hold the power but­ton for three sec­onds to turn it on. This can also be tapped to show how full is the power bank, with five LEDs in a strip around its belly each rep­re­sent­ing 20 per­cent, or 4020mAh. In re­al­ity it’s not quite 4020mAh, be­cause not all of that 20,100mAh is avail­able to your de­vices. Some en­ergy is al­ways lost through heat and volt­age con­ver­sion, and the in­dus­try­s­tan­dard ef­fi­ciency rat­ing is around 65 per­cent.

We have seen power banks that go as high as 90 per­cent, such as the afore­men­tioned Om­nicharge, but the RavPower is not one of them. This means that de­spite its lower 13,600mAh ca­pac­ity, there is very lit­tle dif­fer­ence in the us­able ca­pac­ity of the Om­nicharge and the RavPower. It also means that with a larger bat­tery the RavPower is a big­ger and less eas­ily portable de­vice.

De­spite its size, we pre­fer the RavPower’s tall, cylin­dri­cal, Red Dot De­sign award-win­ning de­sign. The soft-touch rub­bery fin­ish and rounded cor­ners make it seem less un­wieldy and prone to dam­age, while the plastic strip run­ning around its mid­dle that holds its LEDs is a nice touch. We also like the fact the AC out­let is cov­ered to pre­vent dust get­ting in, and the

in­clu­sion of small vents run­ning around the top and bot­tom for im­proved heat dis­si­pa­tion. Plus you get the usual over­charge-, short cir­cuit- and cur­rent surge pro­tec­tion built in.

The tough carry case is a very wel­come in­clu­sion given the rather bulky power sup­ply, but we don’t think you need it for any­thing other than keep­ing to­gether the RavPower and its ac­ces­sories. It has a partly plastic con­struc­tion, but it feels as tough as any metal power bank. Should you re­quire it the Pow­er­Sta­tion comes with an 18-month war­ranty, with a card in the box (at least with our sam­ple) of­fer­ing to ex­tend this to 30 months for free.

Verdict

It has a sim­i­lar us­able ca­pac­ity to the sim­i­lar­lypriced Om­nicharge, yet lacks its LCD screen and is much larger and less eas­ily portable. How­ever, this RavPower Pow­er­Sta­tion Se­ries 20,100mAh Portable Power Out­let is much eas­ier to get hold of in the UK and even comes with a UK three-pin AC out­let. Both de­vices are ex­pen­sive at around £100, but of­fer in­sanely fast charg­ing (and recharg­ing) of al­most any­thing you like. Marie Brewis

Spec­i­fi­ca­tions

• 20,100mAh (74.37Wh) power bank

• 19V/1.6A DC in­put (recharges in 4 hours)

• Up to 65W three-pin AC out­let

• USB-C 5V/3A out­put

• 1x iS­mart 5V/2.4A USB out­put

• Five-LED ca­pac­ity in­di­ca­tor

• 146x69x69mm

• 207g

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