Jackery Explorer 1500 Pro, the solar generator that charges in two hours | Test and Review

Jackery Explorer 1500 Pro, the solar generator that charges in two hours | Test and Review

Jackery Explorer 1500 Pro

Solar electric generators are increasingly popular and day after day they become highly technological objects, capable of being useful in many situations. Whether you are an avid camper or a professional, a solar generator can allow you to better enjoy outings in nature or do that chore away from the power outlets. To get these benefits you don't need a huge, heavy and super expensive model. Also because the more capacious the internal batteries are, the more time it will take to charge them and probably the ideal choice is somewhere between capacity and recharging speed.

We tried the Jackery Explorer 1500 Pro, which reflects precisely these characteristics. The capacity of the internal batteries is approximately 1500 Wh (1512) and can deliver up to 1800 watts, with a peak of 3600 watts. The peak power is high enough to allow the use of very energy-intensive appliances. When, for example, you connect an electric tool, even if its declared power is lower than that which a generator can supply, when it is switched on, a higher quantity of energy may be required for a fraction of a second. This is exactly what the possibility of delivering a greater peak power is needed, since otherwise some household appliances or power tools would not be able to start, sending the entire generator into protection. It happened with the first products of this category, a few years ago, while now the producers are more attentive to this need.

How it's made

The Jackery Explorer 1500 Pro is very nice to look at, even though such a product can be considered "aesthetically attractive". Manufacturers are also more attentive to construction and design and the Jackery is a perfect example of how even this category can surprise. The mix of orange inserts does not make it look as good in the photo as it does in real life, with a truly bright and vibrant tone.

A handle is integrated into the upper structure and allows for a good balance of the 17 kg of total weight. It weighs not a little, but due to its compactness and a lighter weight than many competitors, it is easily transported and positioned anywhere, without having to ask for the help of a second person.

All the electronic components are distributed in such a way that they can be cooled transversally, that is as can also be seen from the exploded view on Jackery's website, thanks to the lateral grilles and a couple of fans which push cold air towards the battery packs and the electronic components necessary for the supply of energy.

The relocation of the connectors and recharging ports is very rational. All the output connectors are positioned in front, i.e. which supply energy, and behind the input connectors, i.e. which allow the internal batteries to be recharged, via various sources, i.e. the electricity grid, the car or solar panels (we will see later in detail) .

What can be fed and for how long

Here are some examples of what can be fed and for how long. For household needs, for example, you can power a 1000 watt microwave oven for just over an hour, so you will certainly be able to cook some food in case you run out of electricity at home (or if you want to take the microwave camping!). You can power a TV for almost an entire day, or recharge your smartphone 70 times, or a notebook for a consecutive month. To give you a practical example of use in the home environment, as Formula 1 fans, we understood that we ran out of electricity just twenty minutes before the start of the grand prix and a battery of this kind allowed us to power both the TV and the audio system for the entire GP (and well beyond). Obviously this example does not represent a common type of use, but it is precisely an example of what can be done in an emergency.

If you want to use it for domestic or do-it-yourself jobs, you can feed a classic drill for about 3 hours, an electric saw for a couple of hours, a brushcutter or a blower for 3-4 hours.

At the campsite, you can power a coffee machine for about a 'hour and a half, you figure out how many coffees you can make in all this time; a mini fridge for about 10 hours, a bluetooth speaker for a week. Or you can also create improbable scenarios, such as taking a small projector with you and improvising an outdoor cinema.

We have given you a mix of scenarios, from the most common ones, such as using tools to DIY jobs or camping use, to other more imaginative ones, simply because when you buy a product of this kind to solve a need, you then find it useful in other situations not even imagined a priori.

As far as recharging the batteries is concerned, the best choice will obviously be to use solar panels, such as Jackery's SolarSaga 200 Watts, offered in combination in some bundles. If you recharge the batteries via the household power outlet, the Jackery 1500 Pro also loses its title of "solar generator" and becomes a simple oversized battery. Being able to exploit solar energy not only saves you money, but above all it really allows you to exploit clean energy. However, the fastest recharge is the one via the home network, which allows the entire battery pack to be recharged in about two hours. Paired with a single 200 Watt SolarSaga panel, this will take around nine hours, which is perhaps too long. With two panels, on the other hand, it is possible to recharge in 5 hours, a decidedly shorter time and which could allow, with the right exposure, to keep the battery charged even in the cold months with probably not optimal sun exposure. It is even possible to combine up to six panels, bringing the recharge time to two hours, while in an emergency, using the 12 V car adapter, it can be recharged in 16 and a half hours.

The battery is guaranteed for more than 1000 recharge cycles, with capacity maintained within 80%. It obviously depends on the intensity of use, but even if you want to use it and download it completely every day, a highly unlikely scenario, you will have more than three years insured. Considering a more real scenario, the thousand recharge cycles will extend the life between 5 and 10 years, and beyond.

SolarSaga 200 Watt

SolarSaga 200 Watt panels are made as well as the Jackery 1500 Pro. Folded into a protective casing and shaped to obtain a carrying handle, they are light and always protected during transport.

Just loosen a safety strap to unfold the panel, made up of four individual sections , using the rear supports to keep them slightly inclined when placed on a surface.

All the connections are already made and you will only have to connect them to the generator, or to other panels , to create a larger charging array. No knowledge of the subject is necessary to use them.

We have carried out tests to evaluate their yield, however we would like to reiterate the numbers indicated by the company. Each panel is able to offer a peak power of 200 watts, obtainable only in the best conditions. Considering that you will often find yourself in conditions that are not entirely optimal, it is quite safe to obtain an output between 150 and 180 watts in good conditions.

The test

During the test we appreciated the ease of transport, solidity and dimensions, after all compact enough not to put us in difficulty when positioning it almost everywhere. The screen is not always seen very well, especially in the sun, but it is not something that creates real problems during use. We hooked up various power tools and they all worked flawlessly. The number of sockets is sufficient to leave several tools or appliances connected at the same time, but to be used separately, unless products with limited energy consumption that do not exceed 1800 watts during operation.

In use at home, the multiple USB ports are very convenient, above all for the high power. We were not bothered by the cooling fans, which are heard while using very powerful tools, a noise which however is always dominated by that of the tool itself, while with low power supplies they are not heard at all. At the front there is also a very bright flashlight, which however we did not use much in our test, but which may come in handy for some, both when camping at night and for doing work in places with poor lighting. We have no particular defects to note, everything worked properly.

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