I got a Powerhouse when they were on sale a while back at Amazon - and I love it! The only thing is - I’m having one heck of a time finding a car charger that will work with it. If I’m using it heavily on the go, it makes sense to me to be able to recharge it while I’m in transit from one place to another. But finding a car charger that offers the right voltage and the right connector has so far eluded me.
Has anyone here had a similar thought and found a solution? (I ordered a laptop charger I saw listed on Amazon that claimed to be able to output 16V - when it arrived, the spec plate claimed the lowest it would go was 18.5V so it’s been returned. (I figure 16V might charge a little slower than the 16.8V from the AC charger, but I would not risk using a higher voltage.)
This is why I think a successor to the Powerhouse is inevitable.
To your problem you would need a stock inverter from other than Anker, to turn 12V DC from car to output AC to then use the supplied Anker AC-DC converter to then charge the Anker Powerhouse. Technically it will work and be relatively low cost. The downside is the inefficiencies so speed of this process, because the limiting factor is your car’s output, reduced by the DC-AC of the inverter, then the supplied AC-DC to the Powerhouse.
If you wanted to remove the inverter then you are seeking a 12V-19V DC-DC inverter. I’m sure they exist.
IS there a variable DC output car charger?
Modify existing method:
I’ve tried an inexpensive DC-to-AC inverter, and it makes the supplied AC-to-DC charger for the Powerhouse run uncomfortably hot… and “pure sine” inverters tend to be rather expensive. I know there are DC-DC converters that provide an appropriate voltage - I’m just asking if someone’s encountered one that is of good quality, and ideally provides the correct charging tip directly rather than have to use a series of adapters.
There are tons of them - but I’ve seen some shoddy ones and given that the Powerhouse is not exactly cheap, I don’t want to risk using a bad charger that might damage it. I thought by bringing this up it might uncover some good options, as well as let Anker know this is an issue to address - if not for this model, possibly for future ones.
I like that Anker Powerhouse was produced but for the reasons you mentioned and other reasons I would not buy. Given the amount of electronics it contains:
You’d expect it to:
- take any form of input, any voltage, anything including the car charger 12V output, or any solar panel output,
- output any voltage so it can power everything over DC like any laptop.
There is no underlying technical reason, given the size of the Powerhouse, it cannot do these. There are good reasons in smaller items like a Powercore, Powerport, such as the thermal output of conversion, but no good reason to not do this for a $330+ physically large device.
There is no 100% efficient DC-DC conversion, and the inefficiency is a function of the step up/down but that top-right heat distribution tells you such a big universal converter can be more ambitious. Take everything, give everything (within physics limits).