Choetec Solar Panels Half Price on Amazon

Started by cockpitbob, July 31, 2016, 11:50:41 am

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cockpitbob

July 31, 2016, 11:50:41 am Last Edit: July 31, 2016, 11:56:29 am by cockpitbob
$40 for 2 panel, 12W, 11oz
$50 for 3 panel, 19W, 15oz
https://smile.amazon.com/Charger-Upgrade-Version-2-Port-Detect/dp/B00TEQJEC6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1469976110&sr=8-1&keywords=choetech+solar&refinements=p_72%3A2661618011

I mainly use NiMH AA and AAA batteries so I need a USB powered charger. 
This one looks really interesting because it's a charger AND power bank.  Unfortunately I'm not finding any USB powered chargers with great reviews.  EDIT: I just realized this charger only charges batteries in pairs.  That's a big negative to me.
https://smile.amazon.com/PortaPow-Battery-Charger-Mobile-Devices/dp/B00HCBDV10/ref=pd_sim_23_9?ie=UTF8&dpID=41g7G-diGdL&dpSrc=sims&preST=_AC_UL160_SR160%2C160_&psc=1&refRID=5QCYXG2WK77K1G9FVET7

Anyone got a favorite battery charger designed to work from a solar panel?

Edit again:
This one charges batteries individually but won't work as a USB power bank.  Still only 3.5 stars.
https://smile.amazon.com/PortaPow-Intelligent-Charger-Rechargeable-Batteries/dp/B0107OK1RA/ref=pd_sim_107_12?ie=UTF8&dpID=41D%2Byq-EOaL&dpSrc=sims&preST=_AC_UL160_SR160%2C160_&psc=1&refRID=5TB9EYXRF4GWN64ABVQC


gil


vwflyer

I was trying to decide between those same two chargers and weighing the pros and cons of smart charger vs battery pack capable. Although I was looking at getting this other folding panel just because it t came highly recommended by my brother and has come down a lot in price since he bought it.
https://smile.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B006ZRYU9O/ref=ox_sc_act_image_3?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=AU5MW0P13QZ5V

cockpitbob

Quote from: vwflyer on July 31, 2016, 02:47:37 pm
I was trying to decide between those same two chargers and weighing the pros and cons of smart charger vs battery pack capable. Although I was looking at getting this other folding panel just because it t came highly recommended by my brother and has come down a lot in price since he bought it.
https://smile.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B006ZRYU9O/ref=ox_sc_act_image_3?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=AU5MW0P13QZ5V

It's 7oz heavier than the 12W Choetec, but maybe that translates into ruggedness.  This is one of the down sides of on-line shopping.  You don't get to see and hold anything.

gil

I used to have a 7W GoalZero Nomad 7 panel (lost it). It was enough but barely. I could charge only one thing at a time though, either AA cells for my MTR or my iPhone. I am now looking at the Cheotech 19W. Hopefully it will still be on sale on Tuesday when I'll have enough money! I want to get 18650 cells later, so 19W I think will be perfect. RAVPower has a good reputation too BTW. GoalZero is awesome but pricey.

Gil.

vwflyer

I'm sure they are both great products. I've never seen the Choetec but it has good reviews. I don't understand its specs though. The  instapark 10 watt panel says it puts out two amps at 5 volts hence its 10 watt rating. The Chotec on the other hand says it can put out up to 1.8 watts also at 5 volts. That would make it a 9 volt panel, not 12. This would make sense as the Choetec has two panels and has less panel surface area than the three panel instapark. My brother says that his instapark will charge his iPad. I've heard that the 7 watt goal zero panels are a little underpowered for an iPad.

vwflyer

Actually, I'm torn between buying one of these little 5 volt units for charging phones, tablets, and AA batteries and buying a 12 volt foldable panel like the instapark 27 with a charge controller.
https://smile.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00F05VDVU/ref=ox_sc_act_image_5?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=AU5MW0P13QZ5V

With a 12 volt unit I can charge via the USB port like the smaller panels but I can also charge small 12 volt batteries with it which can be handy if I want to run a rig off a 12 volt battery. I can also take it car camping and keep everything charged from my car's cigaret lighter and use my mobile radio and keep my car battery topped off with the solar panel rather than running my car.  Of course the downsides are that it costs twice as much and is less ideal for lightweight backpacking. I do more car camping than backpacking though so the added functionality of the 12 volt panel might be the better fit. If I did more long distance backpacking where a battery pack would not last the whole trip then the small 5 volt panels would be better I guess.

STN

August 12, 2016, 06:07:33 am #7 Last Edit: August 12, 2016, 06:21:51 am by STN
Nice post guys.
Last year I did a review on the Choetech 19w solar panel. https://youtu.be/_3LbZ2bcbhM
The Goal Zero Nomad 7 is nice panel but it's very delicate. The cables coming out of the power supply work themselves loose at the solder joints with continued use. There are three cables there, 1 for 12 volts 1 for charging up their battery pack and then another for chainng those panels together. If you don't need the functionality of the 12 volt port then I would say the Choetech is a much better panel.

Both the Choetech and Nomad lack ingress protection. Weatherproof waterproof rain proof... It's all just brouhaha used as colorful marketing bait. The Choetech does have great USB charging abilities in full sunlight, on a single port. The Nomad doesn't!

I also did a video which is related to the Choetech showing how I charge up all my YouTube gear tablets mobile phone and everything in the field using this particular solar panel. https://youtu.be/0JuHvD6ff9U

Has all these guys I hope these links help and if you find them useful please give a thumbs up.

73 de OH8STN

gil

I bought the Choetech 19W and will be using it daily starting 08/18.. We'll see..

Gil.