Portable power stations are gaining popularity steadily. They’re incredibly useful, generate clean energy, make little to no noise, and come in handy (literally)! Power stations are being sought by two types of users: the adventurers and the families seeking backup power at home. Electric power stations are rechargeable, which increases their utility. They come in various shapes and sizes, each with its own power rating.
It’s hard to pick one power station because each size represents its own set of users. So instead, we’ll give you a breakdown of the best portable power stations you can get on a budget.
What to Look for in Portable Power Stations
This section will guide you briefly on what specifications are important to note and what they mean for you as a user.
This is the first bit of info you see on a power station. The wattage represents the power rating and tells you what electronics the power station supports. The higher the power rating, the bigger the electronics it can handle. For a balanced experience, we recommend getting a power station that has a power rating of at least 500W.
You can tell the battery capacity from the Watt-hours. This is an essential factor in portable power generation as it affects how long the power station will support your electronics. The battery capacity is probably the critical factor in making your decision.
Here, what matters is the type of ports and the quantity which a power station offers. If you’re searching for a power station or camping, you would want at least 5 ports. Too many ports are also redundant as you can only power electronics up to the power rating of your portable power station. An ideal power station offers a variety of AC ports, DC ports, USB-A, and USB-C ports. If there is a fast-charging port, that makes it more preferred for smartphone charging.
The size, weight, and carrying handles are what determine how “portable” a power station really is. The front runners of portable power station manufacturing are focused on creating lighter, smaller, and ergonomic units. Since you are the one carrying the power station, it’s up to you to decide which one is a better fit. However, we will highlight any outstanding quality we find in this regard.
The 5 Best Value for Money Portable Power Stations
Let’s dive into the actual product recommendations now. Here are our picks listed from best to fifth-best.
Dawad GoWatts 700
- Power Rating: 700W
- Battery Capacity: 577Wh
- Weight: 5.8 kgs
- Ports: 7
- Price: $529
A new name in the power station industry, Dawad’s GoWatts 700 truly stands out in terms of value for money. It stands out as the smallest and lightest power station in the 700W category. The fold-in handle is not the first we have seen but helps in packing it into tight spaces. It sports additional features like an informative display that’s easy to see in the daytime, a battery management system for safety, and two LED lights that serve as flashlights and ambient lights. For this price tag, you get a higher power rating, lots of ports, and an easy-to-carry battery power station.
EcoFlow River Pro
- Power Rating: 600W
- Battery Capacity: 720Wh
- Weight: 7.6 kgs
- Ports: 8
- Price: $649
EcoFlow is known for their power stations providing long hours of energy backup. Their River Pro model is one of their most potable designs and weighs 7.6 kgs. It claims an impressive charge time of 0-80% in one hour, which to us is the standout feature. At $649, the 720Wh battery capacity is a bargain.
Goal Zero Yeti 500X
- Power Rating: 500W
- Battery Capacity: 505Wh
- Weight: 5.85 kgs
- Ports: 6
- Price: $699
The Goal Zero Yeti 500X is yet another lightweight emergency power station. It offers just above 500 Watt-hours of battery capacity and can support up to 500W electronics. While the price does go higher than our top 2 picks, Goal Zero has its benefits in being noiseless, handy, and safe to use. Goal Zero is a good value-for-money option with features that most users would hope to use.
Jackery Explorer 500
- Power Rating: 500W
- Battery Capacity: 518Wh
- Weight: 6.04 kgs
- Ports: 7
- Price: $529
Jackery has risen quickly and become the popular choice for battery power stations. It has multiple variants in its “Explorer” series, but for us, the Explorer 500 gives the best value for money. It offers 518Wh of capacity and 7 ports, including three DC ports that are preferred for portable charging. Jackery’s standout feature is its solar panels that are sold separately but worth the extra cost.
- Power Rating: 300W
- Battery Capacity: 500Wh
- Weight: 6.0 kgs
- Ports: 10
- Price: $299
While the Bluetti AC50S will surprise you with its low cost and the most output ports, the 300W power rating is what really holds us back from ranking it any higher. The 500Wh battery capacity is the best value for money you can get in this $299 price range. So, that’s why the Bluetti AC50S has made it to the fifth spot on our list.
There you have it. The 5 best value-for-money power stations that you can get in 2022. Our recommendation for the best portable power supply is the Dawad GoWatts 700 due to its safe charging, portability, and additional features. Depending on your budget, any of these will make a great power companion for you this year.