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The 5 best portable power banks: Top up your mobile devices

What is the best power bank? ZDNet's expert pick is the Zendure SuperTank Pro for its capacity, OLED display, and aluminum shell. Power banks are a great way to top up your smartphones, tablets, and other gadgets when out and about.

Sometimes there isn't a power outlet conveniently at hand to give our devices a top-up, and that's when the best power banks come in handy.

Whether you're trekking in the wilds or strolling between coffee shops, a power bank can make the difference between staying connected or going silent.

Here is a selection of great power banks to keep your devices charged up when you're away from a power outlet.

Zendure SuperTank Pro review | Best power bank

Tech specs

  • Dimensions:  4.9 x 2.9 x 1.8 inches (124mm x 74.5mm x 45.5mm) 
  • Weight: 20.5oz / 580g 
  • Capacity: 26,800mAh 
  • Cells: 8 Samsung high-density electric-vehicle battery cells 
  • Flight safe: Yes (rated at 96.48 watt-hours) 
  • Total DC Output: 138W 
  • Display: OLED Screen 
  • Material: Aluminum shell with ABS & polycarbonate midframe

This is my favorite power bank of all time. It's been with me in a number of off-grid situations, and to various countries, and it has never let me down. It's got enough capacity to keep my devices topped up between proper recharges, and enough power to charge up everything from my earbuds to laptop.

And it's still small enough to fit into cargo pants pocket (although you better have a belt!).

If you want a big power bank with plenty of power and the ability to charge four devices simultaneously, the Zendure SuperTank Pro is the power bank for you.

Connectivity:

Input 

Output

  • USB-C1/C2: 5V/3A, 9V/3A, 12V/3A, 15V/3A, 20V/3A, 20V/5A, 100W Max

  • USB-C1: 5V/3A, 9V/3A, 12V/3A, 15V/3A, 20V/3A, 20V/5A, 100W Max
  • USB-C2: 5V/3A, 9V/3A, 12V/3A, 15V/3A, 20V/3A, 20V/5A, 100W Max
  • PPS: 5-11V, 5A
  • USB-C3/C4: 5V/3A, 9V/2A, 12V/1.5A, 18W Max

Pros:

  • Lots of power
  • Flight safe
  • Four USB-C ports
  • Enough power to recharge a MacBook Pro

Cons:

  • Heavy
  • Expensive
  • No USB-A (except using an adapter)
2022-06-15-13-08-11

 Tech specs:

  • Battery: Cell Type: 18650 Li-ion battery | Capacity: 20,000 mAh, 72Wh ±5%
  • AC/HVDC Outlet: Output: 100W (120V/60Hz US model, 230V/50Hz EU model)
  • Wireless charging: Output: 10W max
  • Weight: 1.4 lbs
  • Dimension: 5.0" x 4.8" x 0.91" 
  • Flight safe: Yes

Everything about the Omni Omni 20+ is designed around power and ruggedness. 

The exterior ABS/rubberized shell is capable of taking a pounding, the ports are well-designed, and the screen offers everything from at-a-glance information, to a deep dive into what's going on.

Think of this as less a power bank and more a recharging computer. 

This is a great choice when I want an AC outlet when away from civilization but don't want to take a big power station.

Connectivity: 

USB-C Port

USB-A Output

  • Input: 45W max
  • Output: 60W max

  • 5V/3A QC 3.0 compatible



Pros:

  • Lots of power
  • Plenty of outputs
  • OLED display packed with information
  • Rugged

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Big and heavy
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Tech specs:

  • Dimensions:  4.5 x 2.8 x 1 inches (114mm x 71.1mm x 25.4mm) 
  • Weight: 10.8oz / 306g 
  • Capacity: 15,000mAh 
  • Flight safe: Yes (rated at 54 watt-hours) 
  • Total DC Output: 48W 
  • Material: ABS & polycarbonate

A portable, everyday power bank, more than enough to keep your smartphone and tablet going for an extra day or so. Nice and slim and packed with ports, this is perfect for recharging multiple devices simultaneously.

This is the power bank I take with me when I know that my phone or tablet will need a top up, but I want to keep things lightweight and portable. 

All I need are the appropriate cables and I'm good to go!

Connectivity

Input

Output

  • USB-C (PD): 5V/3A, 9V/3A, 12V/3A, 15V/3A, 20V/2.25A, 45W Max

  • USB-C: 5V/3A, 9V/3A, 12V/3A, 15V/3A, 20V/2.25A, 45W Max
  • USB-A: 5V/3A, 9V/2A, 12V/1.5A 18W Max


Pros:

  • Compact
  • Reasonably priced
  • Robust

Cons:

  • Not enough power to recharge a laptop
anker-powercore-fusion-10000-review-best-power-bAnker PowerCore Fusion 10000 review | Best power bankank

Tech specs:

  • Dimensions:  4.72 x 3.23 x 1.39 inches 
  • Capacity: 10,000mAh 
  • Flight safe: Yes 
  • Total DC Output:  5V/3A 
  • Material: Polycarbonate

Is it a power bank or a wall charger? It's both!

You can keep it plugged in and use it as a charger, and pop it out when you want to use it as a power bank.

I have one of these next to my bed. It charges my smartphone at night, and is always ready in case of a power cut or I need a power bank in a hurry.

Input

Output

  • Mains charging (100-240V, 50-60Hz, 0.6A)

  • USB-C: 20W Max
  • USB-A: 5V/2.4A, 12W Max


Pros:

  • Always charged up if you keep it plugged in
  • Recharges quickly
  • USB-A and USB-C outputs
  • Space saver when traveling (takes over from a separate charger and power bank)

Cons:

  • Bit bulky
2022-06-15-14-05-40

Tech specs:

  • Capacity: 25000mAh / 92.5Wh 
  • Magnetic Wireless Charger Output: 15W Fast Charge (10W for Android and non iPhone 12 devices) 
  • Apple Watch Wireless Output: 5W 
  • Maximum Power Output: 190W
  • Batteries: 5 x 21700 Panasonic Lithium Polymer Graphene Composite Battery Cells 
  • Time to full charge from empty: 1 hr 10 min (with 100W input)
  • Dimensions: 15.85 x 8.7 x 2.85 (6.24" x 3.4" x 1.12")
  • Weight: 583.5g (1.28lb)

The Flash Pro Plus is a chunky pack of aircraft-grade anodized aluminum and batteries that weighs a reassuring 1.2 pounds. It's big, but again one of those power banks that has been with me in a lot of places where isn't easy access to a power outlet.

In the age of small, thin, and lightweight devices thing is a monster! It's also incredibly rugged, having survived a number of falls.

It's a big power bank housing five 21700 Panasonic lithium polymer graphene composite cells holding 25,000mAh of power. 

And the power bank can push that power out of four ports and two wireless charger pads.

Yes, that's right, ports and wireless.

This isn't the largest capacity power bank here by far -- in fact, given its size, it's capacity is actually very low -- but the fact recharge capability of this power bank makes it a great choice for those people who are in a hurry.

Connectivity: 

Interface

  • Max 100W USB-C Power Delivery Input/Output
  • Max 50W USB-A  Oppo 50W, Vivo VOOC 50W, Oneplus 50W, VOOC Flash Charge SVOOC Super Flash charging 50W, Huawei Super Charge 22.5W
  • Max 18W USB-A QualComm Quick Charge 3.0 

100W USB-C Power Delivery 3.0 Input

  • 5V/3A, 9V/3A, 12V/3A, 15V/3A, 20V/3A, 20V/5A (PPS: 3.3-6V/5A, 3.3-11V/5A)

60W USB-C Power Delivery 3.0 Output

  • 5V/3A, 9V/3A, 12V/3A, 15V/3A, 20V/3A (PPS: 3.3-6V/5A, 3.3-11V/5A)

20W USB-C Power Delivery 3.0 Output

  • 5V/3A, 9V/2.22A, 12V/1.67A (PPS: 5-5.9V/3A, 5-11V/2A)

50W USB-A 1 Output

  • QC3.0 + SVOOC 4.5V~10V/5A, 11V/4.5A, 12V/4.16A


Pros:

  • Large capacity
  • Lots of charging options
  • Easy to read display

Cons:

  • Big, bulky, and angular
  • Pricy

Which is the best power bank?

The Zendure SuperTank Pro is ZDNet's top pick based on its capacity, connectivity options, and price. 


Power bank

Price

Capacity

Zendure SuperTank Pro

$195

26,800mAh 

Omnicharge Omni 20+ bundle

$299

20,000mAh

Zendure X5

$90

15,000mAh

Anker PowerCore Fusion 10000

$49

10,000mAh

Chargeasap Flash Pro Plus

$319

25,000mAh

Which is the right power bank for you?

Not one size fits all. So, if you're still unsure which power bank to get, consider the following scenarios or use cases to help you make a decision. 

Choose this power bank…

If you want or are…

Zendure SuperTank Pro

A huge power bank that can keep everything powered

Omnicharge Omni 20+ bundle

You want a power bank that can output AC power

Zendure X5

A power bank

Anker PowerCore Fusion 10000

A power bank you can connect to a mains outlet to charge

Chargeasap Flash Pro Plus

A big chunky power bank with wireless charging for your iPhone and Apple Watch

How did we choose these power banks?

These are all products that I've tested and have been using for several months. I always have a power bank or two with me when I'm traveling, and this means that they get prolonged testing.

Here are some of the criteria that I look for:

  • That the capacity is as stated
  • That the power bank outputs the power that is stated in the specification sheet
  • That the product is durable and withstands prolonged use

What size power bank do I need?

Tough question. If you want an emergency power bank to act as a backup, then a small 5000mAh power bank will do the job. If you want a lot of power, and perhaps the ability to charge up a laptop, then the bigger the better (well, going as big as you want to carry!).

What's the largest power bank I can take on an aircraft?

Power banks up to 100Wh (100,000mAh) can be carried without approval, and for power banks that fall between 100Wh and 160Wh you will need permission from the airline.

Are power banks waterproof?

While there are power banks that claim to be water resistant, I've never been comfortable with the idea of getting a pack filled with lithium batteries wet. I always keep them dry, and keep them in a waterproof bag if I'm out and about in bad weather.

What do you think of power banks that have a built-in solar panel?

I have yet to come across a good one. I'm also not comfortable baking rechargeable batteries in the sun for extended periods.

Are there alternative power banks worth considering?

Yes there are. Check out the alternatives below:

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