Gear Review: MyCharge Portable Power Outlet

I can hear Robert yelling at me as enter the title to this review. “This is a firearms website! Why the hell are we reviewing a big *ss battery?” As Lucentio would say, my reasons are both good and weighty. I get the feeling that you readers would appreciate this one . . .

There’s been a bit of an arms race in recent years over portable battery packs.

We’ve become increasingly reliant on portable electronics to gt through our daily lives, from iPads to mobile phones that keep getting smaller and smaller — squeezing out every last spare battery cell in the name of making the device just a little bit thinner.

As a result more and more people are shuffling from one power outlet to the next. I can think of a couple friends with iPhones who have found the need to purchase a case with an external battery just to get through the day.

Thanks to that need to top up our devices there’s a significant market for portable batteries designed to charge our stuff without the need to be tied to the power grid. Whether we’re streaming cat videos on our iPhones or running high tech ballistic calculators in the field (see Robert, there is a gun related connection!) having a portable power source is more important than ever.

Enter the MyCharge Portable Power Outlet.

The first portable power bank I ever bought was a mere 1,000 mAh, or barely enough to charge a normal iPhone to about 1/3 capacity. These days I don’t leave the house without a 10,000 mAh battery pack — mainly because I know my significant other will probably need it before the day is out. The MyCharge Portable Power Outlet clocks in at a downright impressive 20,000 mAh, double the capacity of anything else I have in my bag. And it has a few tricks of its own beyond that raw capacity.

One of the interesting features is that the power pack not only features the usual USB charging ports, but it also has a three prong AC power output functionality. So not only can you plug in your USB devices but you can run any standard electronic device you need. This would be especially important in say a TEOTWAWKI situation (hah! another tangential gun related scenario!) where you might need to power a radio station or provide some temporary power while you get your generator running.

One scenario that MyCharge specifically called out was the ability to run a TV from the battery pack, for things like tailgating parties. Or, to put a firearms related spin on it, watching movies during hunting trips in the woods. The site claimed that it could run a small TV for a few hours, so I decided to put it to the test.

Hooked up to my 42 inch 4k TV streaming Netflix over the WiFi (pretty much the worst case scenario for power drain) the battery lasted a full and complete hour. It powered the TV without a single complaint and zero overheating issues. If you have a smaller TV and weren’t using all the bells and whistles I don’t doubt that this could last the entirety of a football game.

But what about usefulness in a more compact environment?

As Robert knows, flying is my passion. I’m an instrument rated pilot which requires either (A) a metric ton of paperwork updated every few months or (B) a functioning iPad with a special app installed. As with most pilots these days I chose Option B. But flying around with Garmin Pilot running on my iPad all day drains the battery faster than a newbie shooter with a machine gun drains a magazine.

That’s where the MyCharge comes in. Powerful enough to provide electricity to all my gadgets for an entire day, it still fits neatly into the tiny cramped cockpit of a small airplane with space to spare.

So here’s the bottom line. We live in a world increasingly dependent on electronic devices. Whether you’re powering an iPad that is the only thing keeping you from becoming a smoking crater in an airport or a ballistic calculator app that is trying to help you hit that long range target, you need something that you know will work and will get the job done.

The MyCharge Portable Power Outlet is something that I’ve come to trust to provide all the power I need whenever I need it, and do so without taking up all the spare room in my bag.

Specifications: MyCharge Portable Power Outlet

Capacity: 20,000 mAh
Output Ports: 2x USB, 1x 3 prong US AC
Maximum Output: 110v / 65w
Size: 5.0 in x 5.75 in x 1.4 in
Weight: 1.05 lbs
MSRP: $179.99 (like $127 on Amazon)

Overall: * * * *
I’d like to see this a little cheaper than it is, but I haven’t seen a similar product on the market that has these same features in such a slick package. I’m a fan, and it’s definitely going in my rainy day bag.

comments

  1. avatar BLAMMO says:

    Pretty impressive, actually, considering its size and weight. The only other thing I’d want is to be able to charge it from a 12v source (like while driving). I guess I can plug it into the AC inverter I already have.

  2. avatar strych9 says:

    “I get the feeling that you readers would appreciate this one . . .”

    Naw, you’ll probably get some OFWG complaints that it’s not a gun or an accessory so it shouldn’t be a on gun website. I get those all the time. Or complaints that the item is too pricey (i.e. the person complaining is poor and jealous).

  3. avatar Jay in Florida says:

    Every one of these portable battery deals Ive owned has let me down when I needed it most.
    Jumpers, chargers, sit plugged in for months. Power goes out. Drain the battery in my device. Car or bike battery takes a dump. So has my portable jump starter. Or spare charged device battery.
    Camera just died yesterday. So was my spare battery.
    I find out after the fact. If not being used. Charge it up once a month or so. Don’t leave it plugged in indefinably. Leaving it in a constant state of charge sulfates the batteries.
    Maybe this one might work better…………

  4. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

    Nick, you forgot about running or recharging electronic targets…

  5. avatar Geoffrey Leach says:

    I note on the Amazon page that the max output is listed as 45w.

  6. avatar Rick the Bear says:

    Watching “Archer”,eh? Good choice.

  7. avatar billy-bob says:

    Will it recharge a plasma rifle in the 40 watt range?

    1. avatar IdahoBoy says:

      It says 45 watts, so that’s five watts to spare.

  8. avatar Ret1SG says:

    Yeah but, does it take Glock magazines?

  9. avatar Kendahl says:

    You can’t run your iPad off the airplane’s electrical system? I run my laptop computer, which draws more than an iPad, off a 12 volt marine battery via a Targus 12 volt to 19 volt converter.

  10. avatar No one of consequence says:

    Can you charge it via USB port, eg from a solar panel, or does it have to plug in to 120VAC? Didn’t really say on Amazon that I saw. And this is kind of an important consideration depending on where you want to take it.

  11. avatar BluesMike says:

    I was sold until I saw the $130 price.

    I have an Anker PowerCore 10000. It will charge my iPhone (drained around half) every day for a week and usually longer. It’s smaller than this $130 device and costs $26. I could buy 5 of these things and run my phones and pads for a month for $130.

    I like the fact that the MyCharge has a regular electric outlet though. The Anker doesn’t have that. Still, I’ll wait until that one costs something like $40.

  12. avatar Geoff PR says:

    Hey, Nick –

    In your opinion, would a 4K like yours be usable as a computer monitor?

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