Wanted: suggestions for power-bank with pass-through charging
January 17, 2017 4:48 PM   Subscribe

I've done many searches on google and amazon with little luck, so I'm hoping somebody here will have some real-world experience with a power-bank for USB charging supports "pass through charging" (allows for multiple devices to be able to plugged into the device and charging at the same time the power-brick itself is being charged. The benefit, of course, is that while travelling, one can simultaneously charge both devices and the power-bank *at the same time*.

In an ideal world, this device would support 3 simultaneous USB connections (at least 2), has at least 10,000mAh capacity, and won't get fried if I happen to travel internationally and put on a plug adapter.

Is this too much to ask? Does anybody have experience with such a device? (This should also be a device that I can order on Amazon.)

Thank you!
posted by jimmereeno to Shopping (11 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
This is sold by Anker as the Powercore Fusion. They had a mega sale on Amazon yesterday so they're sold out and currently unavailable there but presumably they will be back soon.
posted by range at 5:02 PM on January 17, 2017

Thank you. I saw this sale yesterday too and I was interested until I saw the capacity was only about half of what I would hope for. But this is more or less (actually, just a little less) than what I'm looking for.
posted by jimmereeno at 5:05 PM on January 17, 2017

The powercore fusion doesn't charge itself until its done charging the attached devices, so its not exactly what you want.
It first charges your device then recharges itself (in 2.5 hours)—ready to be taken on-the-go
posted by TheAdamist at 5:10 PM on January 17, 2017

Zendure sounds like it might do it:
The unique charge-through function allows you to charge the external battery while it is charging your devices
However, its maximum input is 1.5A, so I suspect that you will get achingly slow charging of the built in battery if you're using it to charge your personal devices at the same time. I suspect that you'll be better served with separate multicharger and external battery.
posted by Candleman at 6:03 PM on January 17, 2017 [2 favorites]

Unless weight/size are more important, I would recommend getting a separate power bank and charger. These things do eventually fail. My travel charging kit also includes a four port car charger, and a small, long corded power strip. These along with your plug adapter should cover any situation.
posted by Hash at 6:57 PM on January 17, 2017

I have a Zendure and yes, it has limited current capacity but basically overnight it somehow ends up charging both devices and the battery. I think it only draws a couple amps top from the charger which makes sense as thats all that most USB chargers supply.
posted by GuyZero at 5:06 AM on January 18, 2017

This capability does actually exist, at least in battery packs. I have an Anker Astro E5, first generation, which is capable of more-or-less exactly this. I bought it as a supplement to an iPad 2, and wanted to be able to charge both the iPad and my phone at the same time. The Anker's battery drain would be slowed noticeably by hooking up a charger and allowing it to charge at the same time. It would act really badly and start to freak out a bit if the battery on the Anker depleted, because you had ~15 watts in devices charging and maybe only 5 watts charging, causing a ~10 watt drawdown on the Anker battery.

The downside is that the newer Anker models I've checked, including the Astro E5 gen 2, do not support the simultaneous charge-while-charging feature. I think the Zendure looks like a good replacement option based on a brief glance.

Unfortunately, if you're looking for an all-in-one product, I'm not aware of any.
posted by jgreco at 6:14 AM on January 18, 2017 [1 favorite]

My Sony portable charger fits all of these criteria.
posted by ryanbryan at 1:06 PM on January 18, 2017

I have a Zendure, chosen partly for this feature, which seems to be less and less common. It's not the fastest to charge up but it's never been too slow for my actual needs either.
posted by Salamandrous at 1:17 PM on January 18, 2017

All jackery products have this feature according to their FAQ. They are well-reviewed on the wirecutter.
posted by nihraguk at 8:36 AM on January 19, 2017 [1 favorite]

I know this is late, but I just came across this site and remembered your question:
They only source pass through battery packs, and seem to be willing to answer questions if you have them [by email].
posted by Acari at 7:49 PM on January 29, 2017

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