Introduction

Power bank or external batteries have become an essential item for every tech lover to carry. Especially if you travel frequently and have a lot of gadgets to keep charged. However, the world of external battery packs is still evolving and there’s a new one on the marketing every week. So which one is best for you? Should you get the cheapest one, the smallest one, the most powerful or the that will last longest — we’ve got the complete round up for you to decide what works best for your style and wallet. Here is a detailed comparison of the power bank we think is the best for you [updated for 2017]. Also don’t forget to check out our power bank buyer’s guide below the reviews.

 Quick Comparison Table

NameWeightRatingCapacity 
Anker PowerCore 20100
(Editor’s Choice)
356g/12.56oz 9/1020,100
Check Price
RAVPower 16750 321g/11.3oz 7.5/1016,750Check Price
Anker PowerCore+ Mini
(Editor’s Choice)
76.54g/2.7oz 8.5/103,350
Check Price
KMASHI Portable 431g/15.2oz 6.5/1015,000
Check Price
ZeroLemon Y590
(Professional Choice)
817g/28.8oz 9.5/1030,000
Check Price
Anker Astro E3
232.4g/8.2oz 9/1010,000
Check Price
PowerAll PBJS16000R

453.6g/16oz 8/1016,000
Check Price
Jackery Giant Premium 294.9g/10.4oz 7/1012,000Check Price
uNu Superpak 127.57g/4.5oz 6.5/105,000Check Price
Solar Power Bank FKANT 280.66/9.9oz 6.5/1015,000
Check Price

Detailed Reviews

 

1. Anker PowerCore 20100 – Ultra High Capacity 

Guarantee: 18-month warranty and excellent support.
Our Rating: 9/10
Overview: No battery pack review would be complete without an Anker product. This PowerCore 20100 comes with a lightweight body (only 12.5 oz) and still can charge an iPhone 7 almost seven times, the Galaxy S6 five times or the iPad mini 4 twice on a single charge. High-speed charging with PowerIQ and VoltageBoost means that this battery pack recharges itself in 10 hours with a 2 amp charger. Anker PowerCore 20100 is sleek with matte finish and safe thanks to the inbuilt surge protection and short circuit protection. Throw it in the luggage and never worry about running out of juice on your devices again. Yes, this battery pack is safe to carry on flights.
Pro’s:
  1. Great price for the capacity
  2. Huge capacity of  20,000 mAh
  3. High power output
  4. Safe power output
  5. Excellent build quality
Con’s:
  1. Very heavy at 356g /12.56oz

 

2. RAVPower 16750 mAh 4.5A

Guarantee: 6-month warranty
Our Rating: 7.5/10
Overview: The RAVPower portable charger doesn’t really excel at doing a lot of amazing things when it comes to a high capacity power bank and that’s okay. It does get the essentials right with its charging speeds.However, somethings don’t go the way it should like its capacity and somethings like its size can be cumbersome to carry around with its odd shape and heavy weight. For all other purposes, if you put aside its main flaws and just use the power bank, you’re going to be satisfied for what it can do and it might be your faithful companion for days depending on your usage before needing to recharge. It does what it is supposed to do well, but the rest is too much to ask for this portable battery pack.
Pro’s:
  1. Fast charging
  2. Two charging ports
  3. Excellent overall design
Con’s:
  1. Heavy and large
  2. Our testing showed that its capacity is lower than stated

3. Anker PowerCore+ mini, 3350mAh Lipstick-Sized Portable Charger

Guarantee: 18-month warranty and excellent support.
Our Rating: 8.5/10
Overview: Powercore+ 3350 is an excellent high quality lipstick sized light power bank for 1 charge for iPhone 6 and iPhone 5s. For Android phones it is our recommendation to spend a few dollars more for a higher capacity Anker product.
Pro’s:
  1. Short and light (2.7 oz/85 g)
  2. Excellent 18-month warranty and excellent support
  3. Great build; not delicate at all for the size
Con’s:
  1. Not enough capacity for big battery phones

4. KMASHI 15000mAh, Dual USB 3.1A Output and 2A Input

Guarantee: 6-month warranty
Our Rating: 6.5/10
Overview: Kmashi 15,000 mAh external battery is one of the most powerful, versatile and reliable external battery that we’ve come across. It does the job well and has more than enough capacity to take it on the road with you. This is a very practical charger. It is perfect for indoor or outdoor activities like travel, camping or hiking, emergencies, commuters and families.
Pro’s:
  1. 15,000 mAh capacity is a winner
  2. Fast charging
  3. Great for travel
Con’s:
  1. Bigger than most battery packs in similar class
  2. Color scheme might not be everyone’s favorite

 

5. ZeroLemon Y590 30000mAh Dual Layer Rugged 

Guarantee: 12-month warranty
Our Rating: 9.5/10
Overview: ZeroLemon has always been known for their expertise in battery technology incorporated into a multitude of forms including battery cases and power banks. One of the company’s most powerful and newest items is the Tough Juice with 30000mAh capacity. This battery bank includes 3 5V/1A ports, 1 Quick Charge 2.0 port, a USB-C port and a micro usb input, alongside its extremely rugged and durable enclosure, and decently compact form factor considering the capacity.
Pro’s:
  1. Huge 30,000 mAh capacity
  2. Extremely rugged
Con’s:
  1. Expensive, but worth the price in the right hands.
  2. Not waterproof for being in rugged category

6. Anker Astro E3 Ultra Compact 10000mAh Portable Charger 

Guarantee: 18-month warranty and excellent support.
Our Rating: 9/10
Overview: The Anker Astro E3 is a powerful external battery that strikes a good balance between large capacity and portability. You also get several useful features such as automatic shut-off and a low-battery warning.
Pro’s:
  1. Large capacity
  2. Well designed and good aesthetics
Con’s:
  1. Not ideal for pass-through charging

7. PowerAll PBJS16000R Rosso Red/Black 

 

Guarantee: 12-month warranty
Our Rating: 8/10
Overview:This 12V 600A jump starter that can apparently kickstart a 6.2L gas engine in seconds and be used up to 20 times on a full charge. Well, besides using its 16,000 mAh capacity to charge your other devices. Pretty neat.
Pro’s:
  1. Large capacity
  2. Can we used as jump starter
Con’s:
  1. May not work on some V-8 engines

8. Jackery Giant+ Premium 12,000 mAh Dual USB Portable Battery Charger & External Battery Pack

Guarantee: 18-month warranty and friendly support
Our Rating: 7/10
Overview: The world’s largest capacity portable external battery with dual outputs designed for extending the battery life of your mobile devices on the go. It features high energy density battery technology, fast charging scheme, premium compact design, and smart safety built-in protection circuits. The Jackery battery charger takes everything that advances it to a new level. They are made with Panasonic Grade A Lithium-ion battery cells, aluminum metal case, and premium microchips, together with 4 layers of smart safety protection circuits, recharging more than 500 times over the life of the battery.
Pro’s:
  1. Ability to charge multiple devices at the same time is great
  2. We personally are fans of this design. Minimal yet stylish.
Con’s:
  1. You can’t use pass-through charging with this battery pack.

9. Portable Charger – [Apple Certified] uNu Superpak 5000mAh 2.1A External Battery Pack For iPhone 6 6S, 6 Plus,5S,5, Galaxy S6 Edge,Note 5 4 with 2-in-1 Lightning Cable 8Pin and MicroUSB Cable

Guarantee: 12-month hassle-free warranty
Our Rating: 6.5/10
Overview: The UNU i2 Portable Charger is the world’ s smallest 5000mAh battery pack. Built for durable, on-the-go travel, the i2 is the perfect universal accessory for all your portable device charging needs. Featuring, full-speed 2.1A charging and the highest size to power ratio in the industry, the Superpak is built smarter. Measuring just 3.6 x 1.9 x 0.9 inches, the Superpak rechargeable exteral battery powerbank provides higher-quality charging in a smaller frame than any other brand in the industry. Easily able to fit in a pocket, purse, or hand, the Superpak makes portable charging easier than ever. Our testing found this little device to be more than capable of recharging most popular mobile devices out there.
Pro’s:
  1. Small form factor is perfect for someone on the go and who doesn’t like to carry around extra weight
  2. 2.1 A fast charging is one of the fastest we’ve seen for such a small device
Con’s:
  1. Not enough juice to charge multiple devices at same time

10. FKANT 15000mAh Portable Dual USB Solar Cell Phone Charger External Battery Pack

Guarantee: 12-month hassle-free warranty
Our Rating: 6.5/10
Overview: This is a 15,000 mAh rechargeable Li-polymer battery, suitable for most of digital devices. Equipped with solar panel, which could recharge the battery itself under sunshine for emergency purpose while outdoor. Charge two devices simultaneously. 2A USB port for iPad/Tablets, 1A USB ports for cellphones or other electronic devices. Smart automatic identification, provides excellent charging service. It also features a rugged design and compact size, shockproof and rain resistant. Easy to hold in hand and carry, it will be your first choice for outdoor activities.
Pro’s:
  1. Solar charging capabilities in emergency. Great for the outdoors.
  2. Rugged design and rain resistant.
Con’s:
  1. We found the solar charging to be a hit or miss.
  2. Size is on the large side.


 

Power Bank Buyer’s Guide

We just went over some of the best power banks that you can buy this year.However, sometimes all these terminologies and numbers can be confusing. Especially if you are new to the world of external battery packs or just are not very “tech-savvy”.

No worries, we got you covered! We will walk you through all the important concepts you need to know and simplify them so you can make an educated decision on what is the best power bank for your needs.

Alright let’s being.

Basics of Power Bank

What exactly is inside a power bank, anyway? Mostly it is composed of a lithium battery that has been connected to some advanced circuitboard and put inside an external casing. Well, that’s over simplifying things a bit but you get the idea. Over the past couple years, as the amount of devices we carry around have increased, the markets have been flooded with many external batteries.

What is the capacity?

Most batteries inside our devices are rated in mAh or milliAmpere hours. So if you have a device that holds 10,000 mAh in the battery, this doesn’t mean a 10,000 mAh power bank will fully charge your device.

Most manufacturers rate these external batteries at the voltage of the battery, but that number has been hiked up a little in order to charge your device. In addition to that, there is also some power lost as heat in the conversion process. Surrounding ambient temperatures will also have an effect.

So, as a general rule, subtract 15% from the quoted figure to get a more accurate estimate of how many charges you would get from your new power bank.

Charging speed

The speed at which a power bank is capable of charging devices is an important consideration point. Most of the above featured power banks now come with intelligent voltage systems that will provide power as fast as the device asks for it, as long as it is within the capacity of the external battery.

Also, you will notice that power banks take considerably long time to charge themselves. So, unless you batter comes with one, it is a good idea to invest in a good 2A+ wall charger. These allow for faster charging. Refer to the manufacturer’s instructions to find out what is the best rating for charging the power bank.

Lastly, you want to see how many charging cycles the battery is rated for. Usually higher the charging cycles of an external battery, higher the price. So most high-quality power banks are on the higher end of the pricing spectrum.

Protecting your investment

Now-a-days, it is very rare to find power banks without any self-protection technology. At the least having over-charging protection should be a standard in your consideration. A lithium batter on fire is not a situation you want to find yourself in.

Please also take care to not handle your batteries roughly, drop them, immerse in water or expose to extreme temperatures. This may lead to personal injury but also severe damage to your power bank.

Size does matter

Sometimes you may find you power banks with identical mAh rating, however varying greatly in size. This may be due to different battery density and/or the number of cells in them. Smaller batteries tend to have less charge but idea for people on the go e.g. this one is as small as a lipstick.

What is passthrough capability?

A lot of the new power banks will feature something called, a passthrough ability. All this really means that the power bank itself can be charging other devices while it is charging itself. So in essence passing the charge through itself to the device as it charges. The biggest advantage to this is that it reduces the amount of cables you have to carry around.

This covers most important concepts you need to know before buying the power bank. These are mostly common among all power banks you will see in one way or other. Then there are other things like solar charging, water resistant, rugged body, etc. But that’s all extra depending on your needs and lifestyle.

Hope you found this guide helpful! Please don’t forget to check out the reviews above if you haven’t already.