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Old April 13th, 2013, 04:29 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Review of Anker Astro 3E 10000 mAh external battery w/pics!!!

This is a review of Anker Astro 3E 10000 mAh dual output port External Battery: AnkerŪ Astro3E 10000mAh Dual 5V 3A USB Output External Battery Pack Charger

As I continue to explore the available options for external charging of our phone, I'm trying to find a product that pushes envelope of capacity while still offering a small footprint. At the current moment Astro 3E is one of the leaders in this category. With dimensions of 142mm x 71mm x 15mm and approximate weight of 240g, this is one pocket/purse friendly portable unit. With a piano finish shiny exterior and a round power button at the bottom, it might even resemble a certain early gen smart phone True, it's not exactly feather light, but with such a high capacity (10000 mAh @ 3.7V for a true 37Wh) and 15mm in thickness I found it to be very portable.

Astro 3E offers micro-USB port input capable of supporting fast 1.5A charging of this external battery unit, something which is very important so you don't have to spend the whole day waiting for it to charge up and can get from zero to 10k in about 8h-9h if you are using 2A usb AC adapter. Output has 2 ports labeled "Apple" and "Android". I found no difference where both of my Note 2 and Nexus 7 were able to charge from either port in AC mode. What makes this extremely flexible is that either of these ports can supply up to 3A of current. You don't have to worry about one port being capped at 2A and the other at 1A. You will get super fast charging from either of the ports. You can also charge from both of the ports simultaneously but a total current draw can not exceed 3A. So if you have two Note 2 phones or Note 2 and latest iPad - the internal circuit of this device will go into auto-shutoff to prevent it's damage. A really great feature to safeguard your external battery and charging devices.

Once you press power button, you get 4 neat blue led circle indicators each one corresponding to 25% battery increment. While you're charging Astro 3E those leds indicate the progress and will turn off when charge cycle is complete (a safety auto shut off). When you are ready to start charging and connect Astro 3E to your device, you will need to press power button to start charging. While everybody is using regular usb to micro-usb straight wire cables, Anker supplied with their Astro 3E a very unique coiled usb cable with an adapter that can accept 4 included tips (micro-usb, mini-usb, 30pin Apple, and small round connector I have seen on some no-name tablets). These tips have a very secure attachment and you don't have to worry they will get disconnected while being pulled by a coiled usb cable. I actually found this coiled cable to be very unique since it helps resolve a clutter usually left by untangled cable. There is also a traveling mesh pouch which is great to pack Astro 3E along with the cable and the tips so you don't loose anything.

This is definitely a great product for anybody who is looking for external charging of your device when you are on a go and need to replenish your battery as fast as you can. Also, it's very portable for its capacity. Plus, Anker is a trusted brand name and they support this product with 18-month warranty where you can return it for replacement or refund for any reason under their unconditional return policy. I highly recommend this product!

Here are the pictures to get an idea of Astro 3E:


























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Old April 13th, 2013, 05:09 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Wow, that's definitely smaller than the Astro 3.
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Old April 14th, 2013, 08:54 AM   #3 (permalink)
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It is, but then Astro 3 (versus 3E) intended for a more heavy duty charging tasks including support of 9V/12V charging for laptops.

Btw, for benefit of others as a general comment, Anker is probably one of the few companies that is VERY honest about capacity. When you deal with External vs Extended batteries the capacity rating is not the same. Extended battery that goes into your phone supposed to be rated to that exact capacity based on a sum of internal cells. That battery goes into direct contact with electronics in your phone without a need for any conversions. External battery operates through USB bus and goes through a few conversions with penalties. As a results, with any External battery you actually get about 70% of the actual capacity that you Internal battery can benefit from. And the reason I admire Anker because they actually state that in their manual - approximately 30% of capacity will be lost.

This is not just applicable to Anker, but any other External battery vendor.
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Old April 15th, 2013, 08:20 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Been running more power cycles with this one, and while charging Note 2 and Nexus 7 I see that actual capacity of this external battery is closer to 6000 mAh. While their Astro Slim2 which is rated at 4500 mAh is closer to 3100 mAh (full charge of our Note 2). It's still a great battery, no doubt about it, but you have to be realistic that battery capacity label is not what you will actually get. If you are lucky, you get 25%-30% loss, in other cases it could be 40% down. I talked to someone who got 10000 mAh no-name ext battery from ebay, and it turned out to be closer to 2500 mAh...
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