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Thursday, February 20, 2014

Product review: AYL True 6000mAh External Battery Power Bank


This battery combines compact size with a decent amount of power (fully charged my phone twice). This is the size I prefer to carry in my purse as it is not too big to carry with me yet big enough to provide more than just an emergency boost. It is 4" long, 1.75" wide, and 1" thick. It weighs 4.7 oz. This battery pack has one port and comes with one 20" charging cable. Not all cables are equal when used with Android devices, and this one performed very well (see tests below for details). The battery has a small on/off button on the side and it also has auto shut off. Four small blue LEDs on the top of the charger clearly show the level of the charge remaining in the battery. It has rounded form, and it looks nice and sleek.

I tested AYL 6000mAh external battery pack with my Samsung Nexus phone, iPadMini, and Samsung Galaxy 7.7 tablet. For testing the tablets I used my own cables as the adapters for them were not included. I tested the Nexus phone with the cable that came with the battery as well as several of my own cables and AYL cable performed in line with my best charging cable and significantly faster than one of my data cables.

If you are not interested in the details of the tests here is the summary of the results:
The charger was very fast charging my phone. It charged both of my tablets but with below average speed. I was able to fully charge the phone twice.
For those who are interested in the details of the tests I am including the details below.

★ How I tested this battery pack
==================================

I own a number of external batteries and to compare them I run the same set on tests on each of them, so they can be compared to each other using "apples to apples" comparison. This set of tests allows me to provide unbiased comparisons between different external batteries. For those who are interested in the details of the test I include at the end of this review.

I use a USB current monitor and a charging test to test each port. The current monitor shows the voltage and the current flowing between the battery and the device.

The amount of energy transferred from the charger to the device is calculated by multiplying voltage and current. Most of the chargers are 5V devices and most devices show the voltage very close to 5V. The interesting number is the current as it varies from unit to unit and from port to port.

The current varies based on what the device requires and what battery provides. This communication happens using different protocols depending on OS. Newer Android OS versions have adapted their protocols to get better performance from ports aimed at Apple devices. An addition variable for Android devices is whether a data cable or charging cable is used to charge the device. The charging cables short the two data connections together (rendering them useless for data transfer), but this fools devices to see the cable as an AC power connection, and thus accept the higher current of the charging source.

The 10 minutes test consists of charging each mobile device on each port of the battery pack for 10 minutes and measure how much each unit was charge in that 10 minute period. Since the charging speed is non-linear I start charging each device from approximately the same charge level. I use Battery App by Elvison to determine how each device recognized the charging source. 'AC' status means the charging is at full charging rate. 'USB' status indicates charging at a lower charging rate. 'Discharging' status means that the charging rate is below the power that the device is consuming so it slows down the discharge rate but does not re-charge.

★ Test Results:
======================

✔ Samsung Galaxy Nexus Phone
--------------------------
AC charging rate ----- 8% change in charge in 10 minutes (included cable)
current monitor: ~~~~~ 1.04A and 5.03V

AC charging rate ----- 8% change in charge in 10 minutes (my own charging cable)
current monitor: ~~~~~ 1.03A and 5.03V

USB charging rate ----- 1% change in charge in 10 minutes (my own data cable)
current monitor: ~~~~~ 0.42A and 5.04V

✔ Samsung Galaxy 7.7 Tablet
--------------------------
AC charging rate ----- 3% change in charge in 10 minutes
current monitor: ~~~~~ 1.1-A and 4.97V

✔ iPadMini
--------------------------
AC charging rate ----- 1% change in charge in 10 minutes
current monitor: ~~~~~ 0.92A and 5.06V

★ Summary
------------------
This pack showed very impressive performance with Nexus phone. It comes with an excellent charging cable. I like shape and size for taking along when I am away from home.

You can find it on Amazon by following this link.



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