The time was when consumer-grade solar gear wasn’t all that practical, but over the past few years the tech has developed rapidly, becoming not only highly useful but increasingly affordable. Today, solar generators and portable power stations are go-to mobile juice solutions for van-lifers and campers, temporary off-grid worksites, travel photographers and drone operators, and at-home backup power for when the lights go out.
I’ve spent years testing solar-powered generators, and over the past six months, I’ve looked at the latest releases from both top, established brands and lesser-known newcomers. When I’ve come to learn is that while solar generators don’t vary dramatically in regards to the core concept, different models from different brands tend to be tailor-fit to different intentions. To that end, here are the best solar generator options for a variety of purposes.
Best overall: Jackery 3000 Pro
Pictured at the top of this article, Jackery has been a top name in the solar generator field for a while now, and with their latest release – the 3000 Pro – they do pretty much everything right. It manages to deliver both outstanding capacity (3,024 Wh) and outstanding portability. At just shy of 64 pounds, it’s not exactly light, but the wheels and retractable handle make it effortless to cart around, while its integrated handles and perfectly boxed shape make it easy to lift and store (or fit into a van build). It charges fast (2.4 hours via wall outlet or 3-4 hours via ideal solar conditions), has solid wattage output (3,000 W), and is sturdily built. While it’s arguably a bit overkill for the average users, anyone who wants lots of capacity will love the 3000 Pro.