Allpowers 100W Foldable Solar Panel Review scaled

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This is a follow-up review of the excellent Allpowers R600 LiFePO4 portable power station. It is later than planned due to the atrocious summer the UK has had. But we are finally getting a small sunny spell and giving me the opportunity to test this properly, as well as my recent EcoFlow 100W flexible solar panel review.

Specification

  • Peak Power: 100W
  • Claimed Efficiency: 22%
  • Open Circuit Voltage (Voc): 22.4V
  • Short Circuit Current (IOC): 6.0A
  • Maximum Power Voltage (Vmp): 18V
  • Maximum Power Current (Imp): 5.4A
  • STC Irradiance 1000W/m²: TC=25℃, AM=1.5
  • IP Rating: IP66
  • Unfolded Size: 1220×650×10mm/48×25.6×0.4inch
  • Folded Size: 10×650×30mm/20×25.6×1.2inch
  • Net Weight: 3.6kg/7.9lb
  • Included Cables:
    • MC-4 to 5.5×2.5mm cable
    • MC-4 to Anderson cable
    • 8mm DC adapter
    • 3.5×1.35mm cable
    • DC 5.5×2.1mm cable

Polycrystalline vs Monocrystalline

You will notice that some brands use polycrystalline and others monocrystalline for their solar panels. As far as portable solar panels go, I am not sure you would benefit from one option over the other.

Polycrystalline tends to be cheaper and supposedly less efficient, so the end result is a larger, heavier solar panel.

However, looking at the competing options I have listed further down, there appears to be little difference between the polycrystalline and monocrystalline for either weight or claimed efficiency.

Design / Cables / Accessories

Allpowers 100W Foldable Solar Panel Included Cables

The basic design of this solar panel is much like the other 100W folding portable solar panels. It is a bifold panel with a briefcase-style design making it easy to carry around.

It has a couple of pop-out legs that allow you to prop it up at an angle, and this makes setting it up extremely simple. I am a big fan of EcoFlow products, but I am not overly keen on the way they use a bag that then holds up the solar panel at an angle. It is much more fiddly to set up.

Allpowers 100W Foldable Solar Panel Design

Similar to many other solar panels of this nature, there is also a small zipped compartment which conceals the MC4 connection cable, plus all the included cables that will allow you to attach this to a wide range of portable power stations.

One minor gripe with this is that it doesn’t have a USB port. It is not super important, but it can be handy. The FlexSolar 100W solar panel I received in the past has a 60W power delivery USB-C port, but that costs about 35% more at £130.

The overall build quality feels good and durable. The outer part of the bag is a tough nylon material, and the panels are quite rigid, so this should handle the typical knocks and bumps of travelling.

Performance

Allpowers 100W Foldable Solar Panel Unfolded

It is worth noting that the Allpowers R600 that I reviewed this solar panel with can accept an input of up to 12~60V 12A with 300W Max. That means you could wire up two of these panels in series for 44.8v and 6A output or in parallel for 22.4V and 12A. You could then use a hybrid set-up with four panels, two in series and two in parallel, for 44.8v and 12A, but this would give a theoretical output of 537.6W which is well above the 300W max.

For this review, I only used one panel.

In the morning, before the sun had come out properly but with clear skies, I was able to pull 15W of power, which matched the EcoFlow 100W flexible solar panel I tested the day before.

In the middle of the day, I saw a peak output of 70W, which is less than what I saw with the EcoFlow, but it didn’t seem to be quite as sunny.

Price and Alternative Options

The Allpowers 100W SP-027 solar panel has an RRP of £99.99 but at the time of writing, it was £84.

As for competing options, you have:

  • ECO-WORTHY 12V 100W Monocrystalline Portable Solar Panel for £94.
  • DOKIO 100W 12V Monocrystalline Foldable Solar Panel for £101 but included a separate controller for 12V.
  • Nicesolar Foldable Monocrystalline Solar Panel for £140 with £20 voucher available.
  • TP-solar 100W Polycrystalline Portable Foldable Solar Panel for £130 but with 20% voucher making it £104
  • FlexSolar 100W Monocrystalline Solar Panel for £130 (includes a 60W PD USB-C port)
  • Jackery SolarSaga 100W Monocrystalline Solar Panel for £260

Prices were correct at the time of writing on 17/08/2023.

Overall

The Allpowers 100W foldable solar panel is an excellent option to consider due to its incredibly attractive price point. At the time of writing, it undercuts all the well-reviewed competing options I can find.

Due to the inconsistent nature of the UK sun, it is a bit hard to have an objective test of the overall performance.

However, subjectively I would say the performance was about as good as expected based on my less-than-ideal scenario, and the peak output was close to what I was achieving with the EcoFlow 100W flexible solar panel I reviewed the day before.

I wouldn’t be surprised if other, more expensive options have superior performance, but you need to weigh up the price-to-performance ratio. The Jackery SolarSaga 100W has definitely been the best foldable panel I have used, but it is going to take a while for you to recoup the costs of its significant price difference.

These 100W portable solar panels are great for things like camping, where needs will likely be less demanding than at home. This should help to significantly extend the battery of any small portable power station.

Allpowers 100W Foldable Solar Panel Review

Summary

The Allpowers 100W foldable solar panel is an excellent option to consider due to its incredibly attractive price point. At the time of writing, it undercuts all the well-reviewed competing options I can find.

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Pros

  • Highly competitive price.
  • Superb price to performance ration
  • Good cable selection

Cons

  • Performance may not be quite as good as others due to polycrystalline design

Last update on 2024-06-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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