After the last week of hiking I decided to do a quick review on a very important piece of gear for somebody like me who brings all kinds of photo and video equipment on a longer hiking trip – that is of course the battery power pack and solar charger. In this case I did a quick video review of the Powermonkey extreme along with the solarmonkey extreme.

To sum up the video: 
The powermonkey extreme is a good battery pack that has a total of 9000mah – so plenty to charge all of my gear anyway. they say an iphone 10-12 times and an ipad 1-3 times. I have used mainly the power pack over the last couple of years because I think it is good and serves it’s purpose quite well. Still fairly light at 245grams. This battery pack I can easily recommend for the outdoorsman.The solar monkey on the other hand I think is a waste of space and probably best for the trash can. It generates on a good day a maximum output of just 3watts. That means it will take a very long time to charge the powermonkey extreme battery pack – I know this first hand as it would normally take me an entire day of charging (10-15 hours) just to charge my iphone. It is horribly inadequate for the battery pack or even slight general use. I also did another check and left my solarmonkey out in direct sunlight for 2 full days and got just enough charge to charge my Iphone – in my video I say twice but I give to much credit. It is that bad. It also ways roughly 220 grams – which means it is only 150 grams lighter than a real solar charger that can charge the pack in a few hours. (you can find many foldable 7-12w chargers on ebay for 30-50usd)
2585586_orig

The full blue powermonkey extreme battery pack and it’s useless sibling the solarmonkey together with pretty packaging.

4674291_orig
Though almost completely useless – the Solarmonkey charger does look good.. Looking badass on the side of my Duomid.

5440818_orig

Looking pretty awesome strapped on my Zpacks arc-blast backpack and newly washed icebreaker wool underwear – the solarmonkey doing it’s thing… nothing that is.. well atleast not enough.
Disclaimer on my review style: 
The truth is with my reviews is that I give reviews of the products I use and need when I am out in the wild. Every piece of gear I bring with me is gear that I need, I have no “extra” goodies with me, what I bring is exactly what I need without exception. When gear does not work for me, it cripples my output and performance. That is why my reviews are a bit harsh when things don’t work. I don’t dance around and make myself look pretty for youtube – you can be sure my gear reviews are on equipment I have used thoroughly. I know they are not the most technical reviews – that is the point. I think what is important is exactly how something works and it’s functionality in reality – not a theory based review.Also, my needs may be different from yours – I hike near or around the artic circle most of the time. Lots of bugs, quickly changing weather patterns and at times very unpredictable. I am also very focused on keeping my gear and packing as light as possible. After all the site is called ultralightandcomfortable.com and not heavyandmiserable.com


Posted by Kenneth Shaw

Blogger, photographer and backpacker. If you like my writing or my site don't be afraid to follow me, like or share my posts here on the site. Thanks and enjoy!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s