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7/25/13

Anker Backup Battery


I've had this little powerhouse for a few months now and have been pretty happy with its performance. Unlike many backup batteries, it actually works and keeps on working, too!
 
This particular model is the Anker Astro - 5600 mAH of power in a 4.25 ounce package. Has a built in LED light, too. 5600 mAH will re-charge most smart phones 2-4 times - enough to keep your phone charged through a short term emergency.

Testing this unit out, I've used it as the sole power source for my everyday iPhone. I run my iPhone down to 40% per day on average--checking e-mail, listening to music and audio books, and some web surfing and YouTube. The Anker was able to keep it topped up for 3 days, no problemo.



Anker uses Samsung cells versus junky no-name batteries, and I've found that this unit does a perfect job of holding a charge. The Samsung batteries are rated for at least 500 charge cycles, which is pretty good.

Would I trust an Anker battery to work in extreme environments? Not really - these aren't ready for the Arctic, jumping out of air planes or fast roping out of helos into the Hindu Kush. But, they're sturdy enough to ride around in a bag and face anything you'd expect a consumer-grade piece of electronics to last through.

And, these little batteries are for more than just charging phones. Add a USB light like the Goal Zero Luna light and you've got instant task lighting. It's a very usable amount of light and nice and hands free to boot.


The Anker does come with its own built-in LED, too - it's about as bright as your run-of-the-mill key chain light and will last for hours and hours.

Cost was a mere $36.

Anker has a variety of designs in different size/battery capacity categories. Amazon carries all of them, and most are right around the $40 price point. Were I shopping for one right now, I'd probably go with the Astro2, which packs 8400 mAH into a sub 7-ounce package and comes with a $38 price tag. For a few more ounces and a few more dollars, you can step up to the Astro E4 with a big ol'13000 mAh capacity.

6 comments :

  1. I will have to check out this out. I have one of the Luna lights and that thing is definitely worth the price. From what I can remember it was fairly cheap on Amazon. It is great as a tent light for camping or in tight spaces and puts out a good amount of light.

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  2. AnonymousJuly 25, 2013

    Great post and recommendation. I recently have been traveling internationally for business and I bought something similar to this model however with 13,000mAH of power. Which is considerably bigger, however it gives be the ability to charge my phone and tablet multiple times. It has been a fantastic addition to my travel gear and I highly recommend looking into one of these for short term emergency and every day use.

    -CAF

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  3. AnonymousJuly 26, 2013

    Thanks for the review...I have been looking for a good recommendation for this kind of thing. Oh yeah...congrats on hitting the 5 million mark. Great site!

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  4. Looks great! I've had the Tekkeon TekCharge for a while. It uses standard AA batteries and can also double as a battery recharger. Kind of nice because if ran low you could always swap out for new plentiful AA batteries. But the problem I found was when the batteries weren't fully charged it was kind of hit or miss when trying to charge something like an iPhone. Even though the batteries still had life, my phone would give me a "plugged in but not charging" message when hooked up. Just not enough juice I guess.

    Anyways, I've been interested in a replacement for a while. I find backup batteries super useful--particularly when travelling. Also could be extremely helpful in an emergency. Say there was a major event and you were stuck on a freeway or trapped in a Super Dome--or just didn't have power to your home for a few days. Depending on the nature of the disaster, being able to charge your phone--contact family/friends, use your gps, follow events online--could be invaluable.

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  5. I've got the 10,000mah version of the Anker, and it's amazing. Will recharge my BlackBerry 6 times, or my Android tablet twice (and does meet the 2 amp draw requirement of some of the newer Android devices).
    I have a USB light packed in the pouch with it, and based on run tests I've done with a 500mah battery pack, I could theoretically run the LED light for 4 days continuously off the Anker if needed.(and could run it while charging a device since the larger model has 2 USB outputs).
    While it is a bit larger than the model you described (in size and price)I find it to be perfect for my needs for my GHB, and would recommend it to anyone I know who is looking for something similar.

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  6. I've been looking for a replacement for my SOLIO charger and I think the E4 is a good option. Thanks!

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