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In the last few weeks I have had a few opportunities to take a closer look at the RealPower Powerbank PB-8000. At first glance it looks relatively "normal", but inside there are some amazing features that make the device very versatile. The special thing about the additional battery is without question the many options with which you can charge external devices and via which you can supply the power bank with power yourself. I will explain the details below, but for now here are a few brief bullet points that show what is possible within the scope of the possible:
For most of the products I don't dedicate a separate paragraph to the packaging, but I want to do it here, because the packaging design is very nice. You can open a flap on the front of the box that is closed with a small magnet. If you open the lid, there is an exploded view of the power bank on the inside left with various information on the features and connections. On the right side you can see the power bank and a small list of common smartphones and tablets. Under each device there is an indication of how often you can charge it with the power bank. The whole thing looks very appealing and valuable.
But enough for the pack. The power bank itself is made of plastic, which of course is also due to the function, because wireless charging does not work through an aluminum housing. If you put the power bank in front of you, you will find the button at the front, which you can use to switch on the power bank for normal charging and wireless charging. The USB-A port is also on this side.
On the top there is a slightly raised circle that houses the coil for wireless charging. On the right side is the micro USB input and on the left side is the USB-C input or output.
In terms of optics, the battery is quite inconspicuous. The plastic is gray in gray and actually only the LEDs on the side set colored dots. In addition, the battery seemed relatively light when I first touched it when I compare it with other power banks of similar capacity. But I think the low weight is mainly due to the fact that the wireless charging option means that a lot of space is required for the coils that are inside.
All in all, I find the flat, elongated design very practical in everyday life, as the power bank can be easily stowed in backpacks or smaller compartments.
I took over the specs directly from the manufacturer. I list my measured data below and give my thoughts on it.
In addition, the power bank offers various protective circuits that protect against short circuits, overtemperature, current overload or deep discharge. However, this is common in power banks, as the built-in lithium-ion cells would pose an increased risk of fire if the battery cells were not protected.
What is interesting about the packaging is that wireless charging is also listed here under "Incoming". I tested this and my Qi-Pad recognized a connection and started the charging process, but unfortunately nothing on the power bank's charge status indicator has changed even after hours. So either this feature doesn't work for me, or it charges the battery incredibly slowly and is therefore highly ineffective.
In addition to the RealPower PB-8000 (Art.No.249865) a Micro-USB and a USB-Type-C charging cable. The manufacturer's warranty of 12 months is also worth mentioning.
In order to put the power bank through its paces, I carried out various tests that should provide you with some practical figures. If you like information like watts, mAh or Volt don't say anything, then I recommend that you jump straight to the paragraph "Conclusion", in which I present my opinion on the PB-8000 from RealPower. I'm adding the table with my measurements right here. I then go into a little more detail about all the values and finally tell you my personal opinion about this power bank.
|IPhone X charging performance||approx. 4,9 W.|
|IPad Pro 9,7-inch charging performance||approx. 4,9 W.|
|Amount of energy for fully charging the power bank||35,0 Wh (6.895 mAh)|
|Amount of energy when the power bank is completely discharged||25,6 Wh (5.056 mAh)|
|Maximum current without voltage drop below 5,0 volts||A 2,8|
|Maximum current until the power bank is switched off (protection)||3,2 A (at 4,6 V)|
|Maximum charging current for Phone X with battery level ≤ 20%||A 0,95|
|Maximum performance with Phone X with a battery level of ≤ 20%||4,9 W|
|Efficiency in relation to Wh IN / OUT||73%|
To get an impression of how much the power bank actually delivers, I charge it completely once and then discharge it with a constant current through a USB load resistor. All the time, I measure the amount of energy released using a USB multimeter, which shows me both volts (V), current (mA) and capacity in mWh. Of course, no power bank can achieve the capacity that a manufacturer specifies, because this refers to the entire "amount of electricity" that can be stored in the battery. In practice, however, this is not possible because the protective circuit protects the batteries from this deep discharge.
After it is completely discharged (until it is switched off), I charge the power bank completely to 100% and measure how much electrical energy it has consumed (in mWh). In this way, the efficiency of the battery and the actually usable capacity can be determined. Here are my measurement data:
These values are typical for power banks with 8000 maAh. You never get the full amount of energy out and the mAh that the manufacturers advertise are only characteristic values of the built-in batteries, but not practical values. This means that the PB-8000 is in the normal range here.
A special feature of the RealPower PB-8000 is the USB-C input and output. I used it to charge my MacBook in the test. That should currently be the Apple laptop, which has the least power requirements and is most likely to be considered for the power bank. The output voltage of the additional battery is unfortunately only 5 volts, whereas the Apple power supply works with almost 20 volts.
With a current of 2,3 amps, the battery has around 11,5 watts of power, which is unfortunately not enough to charge the MacBook while it is running. This means that you can only use the battery to delay the "draining" of the internal MacBook battery. As a power bank for MacBooks, I wouldn't recommend the device under any circumstances.
Inset - further interesting articles on Sir Apfelot:
A more realistic situation for the RealPower battery is likely to be that you charge your iPhone or iPad with it. Due to the high capacity of 8.000 mAh, it can also be used for tablets. The electrical power that flows when charging the iPhone X and the iPad Pro is the same and is 5,11 watts. The fact that these values are the same is actually rather untypical, because the iPad Pro has a significantly larger battery and usually charges at a higher rate on my other power banks and chargers.
The value of 5,11 W is also not very high. You can increase the battery level of the iPhone X by a good 30% in 18 minutes, but this is faster with other power banks. My Zendura A2, which I had already tested here, charges the iPhone X, for example, with 7,9 watts and the iPad with 8,5 watts. For the iPhone, this means that the Zendure A2 charges with almost 55% more power and accordingly also fills the iPhone X's battery faster.
Another positive thing to note: I clamped my MacBook to the USB-C port for a test and charged the iPhone X via the USB-A output. Both devices were supplied with almost the maximum capacity of the battery - at the same time: The iPhone received approx. 4,6 watts and the MacBook approx. 10,8 watts. According to the manufacturer, you can even play the game with three devices - wireless, USB-A and USB-C - but I haven't tried that.
As you can see in the photos, the RealPower PB-8000 has an area where you can charge your iPhone X (or other Qi-compatible devices) wirelessly. The wireless charging option can be activated by pressing the power bank's switch-on button for a longer period of time. After about one second, two red LEDs light up next to the button. These indicate that wireless charging is activated. If you now put your iPhone X or iPhone 8 (or a compatible Android smartphone) on the power bank, the LEDs turn green, signaling that a device has been recognized and the charging process is in progress.
Unfortunately, with wireless charging I have no way of determining measured values via a USB multimeter and therefore use the CoconutBattery Mac app which gives me the current value with which the battery of the iPhone is currently being charged. This is a value that iOS provides itself and that is displayed on the Mac via iTunes synchronization. The value is always significantly lower than what is determined when charging via USB. In order to still have a comparison here, I also include a value that my iPhone delivers when I connect it to a 5-watt Qi charging station (Qi charger review) (I don't have a 7,5 watt Qi charger yet). Here are the results with my iPhone X:
So there are no speed restrictions here. It should be noted, however, that wireless charging is always significantly slower than charging via a USB Lightning charging cable. To make this difference clear, I have the corresponding values here when charging the iPhone X via a USB cable - with both the RealPower and the Zendure Powerbank (measured with CoconutBattery).
Another interesting measurement is the time it takes to charge the RealPower PB-8000. When it is completely discharged and you charge it via the micro-USB connection, a charging current of 1,7 - 1,8 amps flows most of the time. Only towards the end of the charging process does this value slowly decrease. The complete charging process takes about 4:18 hours.
Charging is a little faster if you supply the power bank with power via the USB-C port. Here the complete charging process takes about 3:53 hours, which means that you save about 25 minutes.
It is difficult to make a generally valid "judgment" here, because the subjective requirements are of course decisive for choosing the right power bank. What I personally noticed negatively about the RealPower Powerbank are the significantly poorer charge values that it has compared to my Zendure Powerbank. I went back and forth several times and checked the values, but the fact remains that the Zendure simply fills the battery of my iPhone X with noticeably more power than the RealPower PB-8000. I suppose the reason for this lies in the built-in charging electronics, as the power it delivers when tested directly with a USB load resistor is surprisingly high (up to 3,2 amps).
A plus point is certainly the versatility of the RealPower battery. Due to the large number of outputs and the possibility of charging smartphones via Qi charging, the device can be used extremely flexibly. The charging current that comes into the iPhone X via Qi charging is also as high as via a permanently "installed" Qi charging station, so there is no need to compromise here.
The processing looks valuable and well thought-out. The handy surface of the power bank is very practical in everyday use. However, the housing is not designed for "tough" use. A fall on tiles or stone will smell more than a few scratches on the case.
What I find positive is the capacity, which is definitely enough to provide "emergency power" for tablets like the iPad. Nevertheless, the RealPower battery is not a monster, like some power banks with 25.000 mAh. Due to its low weight - about 210 grams according to my kitchen scales - the battery is still "suitable for a backpack" and is not too noticeable when hiking.
The RealPower PB-8000 is not my personal favorite, as I particularly want my devices to be "quickly charged" in emergencies, but if you have a little more time and want more "features", you should just take a look at the device.
Jens has been running the blog since 2012. He appears as Sir Apfelot for his readers and helps them with problems of a technical nature. In his free time he drives electric unicycles, takes photos (preferably with his iPhone, of course), climbs around in the Hessian mountains or hikes with the family. His articles deal with Apple products, news from the world of drones or solutions for current bugs.