It used to be that when we set out on a camping trip we left home with just a backpack filled with the essentials, most notably a tent, sleeping bag, and stove to cook our meals. Nowadays, it seems more and more of us are also carrying our favorite gadgets with us into the back country, giving rise to the need to keep those devices charged when we’re living off the grid. But Jackery is hoping to make that process a lot easier with the introduction of the Power Pro, a portable generator specifically designed for use in the great outdoors.
The Power Pro launched on Kickstarter a couple of weeks back with a modest goal of raising $50,000 to get the oversized battery pack into production. It didn’t take long for supporters to push funding past that level, and now it appears that the device will begin shipping sometime in early 2017.
So what exactly does the Power Pro bring to the table? For starters, it comes equipped with a 578Wh battery and an array of ports for plugging in your gadgets. Not only does the generator have a built-in 110V AC outlet, it also has two 12V DC ports, a DC cigarette lighter port, and two 5V USB ports. On top of that, the Power Pro has an LCD screen to help you monitor its battery life and charging functions, as well as a built-in flashlight for lighting up the campsite.
Jackery says that the Power Pro’s lithium ion battery is capable of recharging your smartphone more than 45 times and will replenish a laptop anywhere from 4-7 times depending on the notebook’s internal battery. It can also recharge a drone more than 7 times and power camp lights for 100+ hours. And if you decide to use the portable generator for your tailgating outings instead, it can even keep a mini-fridge running for up to 10 hours and an LCD TV for more than 4 hours.
The Power Pro itself can be recharged either by plugging it directly into a wall socket or by pairing it with a solar panel while at your campsite. Jackery claims that it will take 6-7 hours to charge the device using the included AC adapter, and estimates a 7-hour charge time when plugged into an 85W solar panel placed in direct sunlight. That solar charging time seems overly optimistic however, as it is rare to collect that much solar energy in the field.
When compared to the competition, the Power Pro stacks up quite favorably. For instance, Goal Zero’s Yeti 400 Solar Generator has both a smaller battery (400Wh) and greater weight, at 29 pounds as against 12 pounds for the Power Pro. On the other hand, the Yeti 400 has an additional AC port and a lower price point. Goal Zero sells their model for $460, while the Power Pro is slated to cost $799 when it launches in February. Will it be worth the extra cash? We’ll just have to wait to see.
Find out more about the Jackery Power Pro on the product’s official Kickstarter page.