Adam holds a Bachelor's and a Master's degree in Linguistics, and creative writing has always been his greatest passion. For more than 25 years he's been working for several well-known automobile and travel magazines as an editor and expert consultant, but when Adam started his writing path here, at WisePick, it turned out that he's capable of writing practically anything about everything.
Initially being an engineering specialist, Tom has never stopped learning and acquiring other knowledge and skills. Now he’s involved in technical support for a well-known household appliances manufacturer, so no wonder he knows everything about almost everything you buy for your home.
Last updated: May 22, 2021
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Generators have a few downsides. While they provide plenty of power, they also provide plenty of noise and noxious fumes. Thankfully, there is a better option out there. Whether you want a backup in an emergency or just a way to power your phone when you are camping, you need to make sure you have the best portable power supply you can get your hands on.
Now, there is a lot to take into consideration when you are looking for a portable power supply. The battery type and battery capacity will determine how long your supply will run and how much it can charge. You also have to take into account for what type of wattage the supply is rated, since this will help to determine what you can power with it. You’ll also have to take careful consideration of the number of outlets and whether or not you can plug in any other charger types. Finally, you want to be sure that you can get a good warranty, since even high-quality products can malfunction and break down.
We have spent tens of hours compiling all the important information that you need to know to get the best power supply for your needs. We also have researched hundreds of user reviews to help compile a list of the best backup power supplies on the market today. If you are ready to begin your search, then you can start with our product table, which will help guide you to the perfect product for your needs. You’ll also want to check out our detailed buying guide and product reviews with pros and cons so that you can find the right power supply for you.
This just might be the best overall portable power supply we could find on the market today. Unlike lots of other power supplies out there, this one is easy to transport. This is due to two different factors. The fold-down handles make carrying this unit a breeze, no matter where you want to use it, whether it be in your backyard or the woods. It is also nice and light, which makes it easy to carry for a long time without feeling any fatigue.
This unit is also built to charge a lot of devices at the same time. It has a multitude of different outlets. To be more specific, it has two AC, four DC, three standard USB, and one quick charge USB port. To put it simply, no matter what you have to charge, this unit is more than fit for the task. It also has a long-lasting battery and can charge fully in a short amount of time. No matter if you choose to use your car, wall outlet, or solar panels, this power supply will only take about eight hours to fully charge.
As with most power supplies, this one does not come with solar panels. These would have to be purchased separately. Thankfully, it does come with pretty much everything that you would need a portable power supply to have. This would be a great device to have around in an emergency, especially when you take the integrated display and flashlight into account. This truly is one of the best, if not the best, portable power supplies out there.
If you are looking for a good power supply for camping, then this just might be the right device for you. It is simple to carry and doesn’t weigh a ton. In fact, this device only weighs a little over three pounds. This alone makes it a great choice to lug along with you into the woods. Even if you are going on an extended backpacking adventure, this would be a great device to take along.
While this certainly is not the most powerful power supply out there (max 150W AC), it is still powerful enough to charge any smaller electronic devices. This power supply would be perfect for use with a laptop, camera, drone, phone, or even a mini-fridge. This makes it a great choice for travel or emergencies. However, it could not be used to power anything too terribly large, such as an air conditioner or full sized fridge.
Since the internal battery for this unit is not overly large and powerful, it doesn’t take a ton of time to charge, no matter what charging method you decide to use. Even if you choose to charge it with solar (not included), AC, or DC in your car. Unlike other portable power supplies, this one will charge in about eight hours, regardless of your charging method.
Even though all of these portable power supplies are designed to be, you know, portable, some of them are still quite bulky. Not quite as bulky as a gas powered generator, but still pretty bulky. That is simply not the case for this power supply. This battery pack is small enough to fit in a backpack, suitcase, or even your pocket in a pinch. This helps to make it highly portable, and perfect for traveling all over the world.
Even though this battery pack is on the smaller side, it can still provide plenty of power and is built quite well. It is made out of highly durable materials, which means that you don’t need to worry about it smashing in your carry-on bag when you place it in the overhead storage compartment on the plane. It is also strong enough to charge any smaller electronics that might need charging, from cameras and phones to tablets and computers.
The only real downside for this power supply is its small size. It is only equipped with one standard AC outlet, so there is not a lot of flexibility if you want to charge more than one device at the same time. While it is definitely powerful enough to charge several devices fully, you would have to do each device on its own, which is kind of a pain. It does, thankfully, come equipped with several USB ports, which will allow you to plug in your phone or tablet at the same time that you are using the AC plug.
One of the best features for this portable battery is its rugged design. While many different portable power supplies on the market are wrapped up in some sort of cheap plastic case, the Yeti 400 is built to last. Its outer shell is made to withstand pretty much any punishment you might dish out as you lug it around with its attached carrying handle. The downside to this rugged design is that it is a bit heavy.
It weighs a little over 17lbs, which makes it a bit more difficult to travel with. In fact, most airlines would probably prohibit this power pack from traveling on the plane at all, regardless if you had it in your carry on or checked luggage. It would be great for tent camping, as long as you don’t need to backpack all of your gear into your campsite. Where this power pack would be most useful is within the home, in case of an emergency.
This is, by far, the most powerful power supply out there today. It also comes equipped with plenty of different plugin options. No matter what you need to power when it comes to electronics, you won’t have any problem plugging it into this power supply.
It is also super simple to measure how much power you have left and how much time you have before the power supply needs to be recharged. You have three different options when it comes to charging this battery. The fastest method is to plug it into an electrical outlet, but both the car charger and solar panels (not included) can do the job in a limited amount of time.
If you are operating on a tight budget, but still want a high-quality portable power supply, then this just might be the right choice for you. It doesn’t have as many bells and whistles as some of the other options out on the market, but at the end of the day, it will allow you to charge your smaller electronic devices without forcing you to break the bank.
There are several different charging ports that you can utilize on this unit to keep your devices charged and ready to use. You can choose from three DC, two USB, or two AC plugin options. All of this different plugin options help to make this a versatile and easy to use the unit.
This portable power supply is also pretty powerful for its size and price range. If all you are looking for is a way to charge up your cell phone, then this would be a great option. For instance, if you have an iPhone, you would be able to charge it about 15 times before you ran out the power supply of the power pack. Even if you want to use it for a more power hungry device like a laptop, you’ll still be able to get about five full charges before the power supply is exhausted.
This unit would also be easy to travel with. It only weighs about three pounds total, which means it wouldn’t be too hard to fit in a backpack or carry-on. It is only three inches thick, which makes it easy to store in a smaller space.
The manufacturer bills this as a portable solar generator; however, it comes as a lithium-ion battery that comes with other components.
The design is quite nice and the unit looks rather industrial. The body is made of high-quality plastic and has a two-tone design of orange and black. Because of the design, this model looks tougher than it really is and feels. At first glance, it is reminiscent of a lunch box.
Other design features include the ports in the front and back of the machine. You will find stuff like USB connectors, a lamp, and display on the front panel. We observed that the digital display is basic, however, it does do the work it is needed for. The rear panel houses the power inputs, AC outputs, and fuse access. Overall, the setup is appealing.
Setting up the generator, at least at first, is simple. However, if you stuck with the instruction manual, you might have unnecessary issues with set up.
As a pure sine wave inverter, this unit has quite a lot of power. It has a large battery capacity that ensures you have the power required to power any small electronics that you might have. You can charge laptops, phones, and other devices for an entire weekend without needing to recharge the battery.
Charge time is somewhat slow as the product will need to be plugged in for 7 to 8 hours. Also, the manufacturer has failed to include USB-C fast charging ports.
As you might have guessed, there is a lot to consider when you are trying to get your hands on the best portable power supply available. In this section, we will go through everything you need to know to make sure you have the best power supply for your needs.
What is a portable power supply? When do you need one?
A portable power supply is very much like a generator. They provide you with electrical power when you are camping or if the power is out in your home. There are a few differences, however, between a portable power supply and a generator. First of all, a generator runs on gasoline, while a portable power supply runs off of a rechargeable battery. It is necessary to charge a portable power supply before you use it, or it will not be able to run.
Another big difference between a portable power supply and a generator is their noise level. While generators can be extremely noisy, which makes them less than ideal for camping, portable power supplies are completely silent. No matter how much you have charging off of one, they will not make a sound.
Finally, generators put off fumes, since they use gasoline as their power source. This makes them a bit trickier to use in close quarters since the fumes could be dangerous in a closed space. Even in an outdoor capacity, these fumes can be a real bother. A portable power supply, on the other hand, will not put off any sort of fumes, making it an ideal source of power both inside and out.
It’s never a bad idea to keep an extra source of power handy. If you are going to be going camping for an extended period, then these products are good to bring along. They will help to keep all of your most essential devices charged and ready for use.
They work just as well in the home if the power goes out. While they aren’t quite powerful enough to keep a whole house running, they can be used to charge up your cell phone, tablet. In the case of some of the larger models, such as the SUAOKI Portable Power Station, they can be used to run the lights in your home until the main power is back on.
Features to consider before buying
In this section, we will cover all of the different details that you need to keep straight to make sure that you get the right power supply for your needs.
Battery capacity and type
The first thing that you will need to take into account is the battery capacity and the type of battery that you want your power supply to utilize. The easier of these two questions to answer is the battery type. The only battery type that you should even consider is a Lithium Ion option. This battery type is easy to recharge, can hold a charge for a long time, and has a long life. This makes them ideal for use in a power supply, and we highly recommend them.
As far as the capacity goes, it is very much up to you and what you intend to use the power supply to charge. The higher the capacity, the more devices you will be able to run off of the supply. This will also cost a bit more than if you went with a smaller capacity battery. Then you will only be able to charge a limited amount of items, which might cause a problem in an emergency situation.
The amount of wattage or voltage that your power supply is rated for will determine what you can run off of it. If it has a lower output, then it can only be used with smaller devices, as well as a limited number of devices at the same time. On the other hand, the higher the output, the more you can run off of your supply at any one time. You would also be able to run larger devices, such as lights or fans if the output were high enough.
For instance, if you want to charge a laptop, you would need a power supply that could run about 60-90 watts, which even a smaller power supply like the EWEMOSI AC Outlet Portable Laptop Power Bank could handle with no problem. If, however, you want to run multiple items off of the same power supply, you are going to need one with higher maximum output.
Number of outlets
Once again, what you intend to use your power supply for will greatly determine the number of outlets that you need to have. If you are only going to be charging one or two items off your supply, then you can probably get by with one or two outlets.
If, however, you are going to be using your power supply for large gatherings, such as camping trips, you will want to have more outlets. That way, everyone can get in on the charging action, and no one’s devices will be left to lose power.
Type of outlets
The types of outlets that your power supply can accommodate are, once again, up to your personal preference. If you are only going to be charging a laptop or just want to power a desk lamp, then you can get by with a few regular, AC plug-in outlets.
If, however, you want to make things a bit easier on yourself, then it might not be a bad idea to get a power supply with a variety of plug-in options. This would include USB plugs, as well as DC ports. That way, you are covered, no matter what you need to plug in and charge.
No matter which portable power supply you end up settling on, you want to be sure that there are multiple charging options available to you. That way, you will always be able to keep it charged and ready for use, no matter the circumstance.
There are several different power source options available to you. These include standard AC plugins for home charging, DC plugins for your car, and even solar options. The only problem with solar is that you will usually need to purchase an additional solar panel to actually use this option.
Warranties on power supplies do not, as a rule, last too terribly long. At best, you will only be able to get one for about 18 months, with many being only a year in length. You want to make sure that whatever type of warranty you get will cover the most expensive part of the device, which is the battery.
There are several other features that, while not essential to the main function of the power supply, are still nice to have. These might include things like flashlights, hazard lights, battery indicators, and output meters.
Two of the better extra features to keep in mind are an overheating protection system, as well as a surge protector. These two features will help to make sure that you power supply doesn’t sustain any damage due to heavy use.
There are a couple of different ways that you can calculate the working time for your devices when you are using your generator. The first, and more difficult method would be to compare the voltage requirements of your devices against the voltage output of your generator. This would allow you to figure out exactly how long you can run your devices. The easier method for working time calculation is if the power supply has an input/output meter, like the one on the Goal Zero Yeti 400 Lithium Portable Power Station. This will allow you to calculate the run time of all of your devices with a high-level of precision.
According to most commercial airlines, they do not allow power supplies to be placed in checked luggage. They do not, however, have any limits or restrictions for carry-on luggage. It must be said, however, that, while you are allowed to take pretty much any power supply on a plane, you probably wouldn’t want to lug some of them with you. While these power supplies are easily portable, they are a bit bulky. This might make it difficult for you to fit them in your carry-on under your seat or in the overhead compartment. If you want to travel with a power supply, then you should go for a smaller, more compact one, like the EWEMOSI AC Outlet Portable Laptop Power Bank. It is small enough to fit pretty much anywhere, making it a great traveling companion.
The types of devices that you can connect to your portable power supply depend on two different variables. The first is the type of plug that your device requires to charge. Before you make your final power supply purchase, be sure that the model you are interested in has the proper outlets for your devices. Secondly, you need to be aware of the power output of the generator, and the power requirements of your device. As long as your power supply can put off a voltage/wattage amount that is larger or equal to the requirements of your desired device, you’ll be good.
The best way to make sure that your power supply of choice is up the challenge of powering any appliance or device is to compare the output of the power supply to the power consumption of the device in question. All of the different power supplies on the market will tell you right off the bat how much power they are capable of providing and the types of devices that they can be used with. Every electronic device/appliance, like a fridge or hair dryer, will have a tag that will tell you how much power/voltage they require to run. All you have to do is compare the numbers and make sure that your power supply can give you enough juice to run your appliance.
The batteries that are used in portable power supplies are usually lithium-ion batteries. Even if these batteries are not used constantly, they will still age. They do not have a terribly long lifespan. In fact, even if you barely use your power supply, the battery will probably only last you two to three years at full capacity. After that point, you will begin to notice a drop-off in performance before the batteries simply stops working altogether.
When it comes to water and electricity, the two simply do not mix. While you most certainly can use your power supply when it is raining, you can’t use it in the rain. If you are outdoors, you need to be sure that you keep it covered and away from water at all times, or you could risk damaging the device or get shocked. Humidity does not affect a power supply. Though the moisture in the air might make it a bit less comfortable to be outdoors, it should not cause a problem with your power supply at all.
After carefully researching all of the different options on the market today, we have concluded that the SUAOKI Portable Power Station is by far the best portable power supply out there. It comes with a multitude of charging ports and options, which means that if you have a device that needs to be charged, this unit will have you covered. It is also quite powerful, even though it is pretty small in size. With its maximum AC output of 150W, you will be able to power pretty much anything that you need to. It is also quite easy to travel with, due to its fold-down handles and lightweight, yet rugged design. This device is also quite easy to charge in its own right. You can choose to charge it with a wall plug, DC outlet in your car, or, if you are feeling adventurous, with solar panels. This makes it a truly versatile device that is designed to be used both in the home and on the go. If you are in the market for a great portable power supply, we highly recommend that you give this one a try!