Light-duty power stations help when the power goes out

Media Source: The Dallas Morning News by @Jim Rossman

 

I’ve been interested in portable power stations for years, but the cold snap andpower outages Texas experienced in February put them front and center inpeople’s minds.

I’ve been asked dozens of times to send a link to a review of my current favoritepower station or to make a recommendation.

The latest power stations to come across my desk are a pair from Aukey — the
PowerZeus 500 ($406.98) and the PowerTitan 300 ($249.99) Portable Power Stations. I’ve been putting them through their paces, and I likewhat I’ve seen so far. You can save $40 off these prices if you use the code AUKEYPLUS when you check out. This code is good through the end of theyear. These are not affiliate links. We do not make any money from any sales ofthese products.

 

What they do

Power stations are big batteries. You charge up the batteries and then use thepower when and where you need it.

That might be on a campout or working far away from outlets or it might be inyour living room when the electricity is out.

The battery power runs through an inverter and the juice flows through different types of outlets and ports. Power Stations almost always have AC outlets (wall plugs), USB ports and a 12-volt accessory port (you might call it acigarette lighter socket).

The power stations will have certain capacity limitations, like the amount of power stored in the batteries (listed in watt-hours) and the amount of power it can provide through the output ports (listed in watts).

PowerTitan 300

The smaller of the two Aukey stations, the PowerTitan 300, has lithium-Ionbatteries with a capacity of 288 watt-hours, and its maximum output capacityis 400 watts. The AC inverter has a rating of 300 watts with a peak of 600watts.

Peak power is the maximum power the power station can sustain for a shorttime and is also called peak surge power. For instance, when a device with amotor is turned on, the motor uses more power to start up than it does when it is running.

The PowerTitan has two AC outlets, two USB-A ports, one USB-A Quick Charge 3.0 port providing up to 18 watts and one USB-C Power Delivery port providing up to 60 watts (enough to charge my 13-inch MacBook Pro).

There are two 12v DC outputs — a cigarette lighter socket that provides 10 amps and a DC6530 port that provides 8 amps.

All seven ports can be used at the same time as long as the power draw from everything remains under 400 watts.

There is a button for each bank of ports (AC and DC) that must be pressed to turn those ports on or off. The PowerTitan can be charged from an included wall charger or USB-C PD in 5.5 hours. It can be charged from the cigarette lighter socket in your car inseven hours or from a solar panel as fast as five hours (depending on the amount and capacity of the solar panel).


The PowerTitan has MPPT (maximum power point tracker) technology to maximize the efficiency of charging from solar panels. You can keep track of the power station’s status through a 4-inch color LEDscreen. You’ll see the power going in and out (in watts) as well as the percentage of battery power remaining.


There are also icons that light up to show which ports are in use. The case of the PowerTitan measures 10.2 by 6.7 by 7.2 inches, and it weighs 9.5 pounds. As for what it can power, Aukey says the PowerTitan can charge a laptop four times, keep a mini fridge running for 20 hours, charge an iPhone 11 30 times and keep a TV running for 4.5 hours.

Pros: Light, integrated handle, plenty of outputs, USB-C charging.
Cons: None
Bottom line: It’s the smallest Aukey power station, but it has big features.

PowerZeus 500

The larger of the Aukey Power Stations, the PowerZeus, packs a battery capacity of 518 watt-hours with a total maximum power output of 650 watts.

The PowerZeus has exact same number of ports as the PowerTitan.
The two AC outlets have a maximum output of 500 watts with a peak of 1,000 watts.

The PowerZeus is designed to run devices like blenders, CPAPs, fans, lightsand small power tools.

All of the ports can be used as long as the power draw of all the devices is less than 650 watts.

The PowerZeus can charge from its included power adapter in nine hours, from a 100-watt solar panel in about 11 hours (in bright sun) and from a car’s 12-volt cigarette lighter socket in about eight hours. Unlike its smaller sibling, the PowerZeus does not support charging through its USB-C port.

The LCD screen is the same size and provides the same information as the PowerTitan.

The PowerZeus measures 12.1 by 7.6 by 7.1 inches, and it weighs 14.3 pounds.The case has a fold-down padded handle to make it a bit easier to carry.
The two power stations are very similar except for the increased battery andoutput capacities.


Pros: Easy to carry, clear display, good power capacity for its size.
Cons: None.
Bottom line: A great power station for the price.

 

Conclusions

The Aukey Power Stations are what I would call light duty. It is easy to findpower stations that have 1,000 or 2,000 watt-hours of power, but each size hasits place.

The PowerTitan and PowerZeus are cheaper than similarly sized units from the competition like Jackery and Goal Zero. Don’t expect miracles. If you need to power a full-size refrigerator, you’ll need to spend more for a unit with larger capacity. But for the money, these two power stations have all the right features atattractive prices.

 

Powertitan 300Powerzeus 500

1 comment

Mike

Mike

A great power station for the price.

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