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