Tong Zhang
(Senior Editor)
06/24/16 06:42 PM
Kanex GoPower USB-C Portable Battery Review

So, you're on a plane or in a car and both of your MacBook and iPad need charging. What do you do? You can bring a portable battery charger with enough power to charge your MacBook and a USB-A to USB-C cable and another battery with enough power and USB-A port to charge your tablet or smartphone; or you can just bring the Kanex GoPower USB-C portable battery to charge both at the same time. The Kanex GoPower USB-C Portable Battery offers two charging outlets, one is USB-C and the other is USB-A. It works perfectly with the 12" MacBook but not with some Ultrabook PCs. The battery can charge any tablet or smartphone with either the USB-A and USB-C ports. The convenience of charging two types of devices is matched by its high capacity at 15K mAh, and in our tests, this battery performed well on conversation rates.

For a battery that has such a high capacity, the Kanex GoPower USB-C Portable Battery is quite slim and light. Measuring at 6.87 x 4.80 x 0.5 inches and weighing just a little over one pound, the Kanex battery is thinner and lighter than many of its competitors that have similar capacities of power. The space gray aluminum housing has matted surface and the curved sides give the battery a modern look while the metal housing protects the battery. All ports live on one side, and they include a USB-C input port, a USB-C output port and a USB-A output port. On the same side, you'll also find a power button and four small white LEDs for indicating the battery's power level. The Kanex GoPower USB-C Portable Battery comes with a USB-C to USB-A recharging cable and a USB-C to USB-C charging cable.

The Kanex GoPower USB-C Portable Battery offers two charging ports and you can charge two devices simultaneously, even when one of the devices is a laptop. The USB-C output port is 5V at 3Amps and the USB-A port is 5V at 2.4Amps. This means you can charge a MacBook and an iPad at the same time. Kanex lists several laptops that the battery is compatible with, including the Google Chromebook Pixel series, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Tablet and the HP Spectre in addition to the 12" MacBook. In our tests, the Kanex battery worked very well with the MacBook (early 2015 model and newer) with great conversion rate and charging speed, but it couldn't charge several Ultrabooks including the Dell XPS 13, the Lenovo Yoga 900s and the Dell Latitude 13 7370. We also tested smartphones with USB-C connectors, including the Lumia 950 and the Nenux 6P, and found that the battery worked well with the phones.

The Kanex GoPower USB-C Portable Battery has total of 55.5Wh power and the 3A USB-C and the 2.4A USB-A output ports are fast chargers. In our tests, the battery charged the 12" MacBook from less than 10% to full in 2 hours with 1 of 4 bars of power left. The battery charged the iPad Pro 12.9" in about the same time more power to spare. It charged the iPhone 6s from lower power to full for at least 6 times and it took about an hour to charge the iPhone 6s from 20% to 100%.

The Kanex GoPower USB-C Portable Battery has a USB-C recharging port and comes with its own USB-A to USB-C recharging cable. The 5V 2.4A recharging speed is good for a battery with such a high capacity but don't expect to charge it up from empty quickly. In our test, the Kanex GoPower USB-C Portable Battery took at least 8 hours to recharge. So be sure to charge up the portable battery overnight or before your trip.

The Kanex GoPower USB-C Portable Battery supports power pass through and has priority charging detection. If you have devices plugged into the battery and plug the battery into power, the Kanex will detect your devices and charge the devices first and then itself. It also has the necessary safety features built-in, including surge protection.


Whether you're on a business trip or vacation, the Kanex GoPower USB-C Portable Battery can easily become the essential power solution for all of your gear. Its enormous capacity, lightweight and slim form ensure that you have constant on-the-go power without weighing down your gear bag. The battery charges fast and can take care of two of your most power hungry devices simultaneously. Two types of USB output ports give you the flexibility to charge both current and future devices. We like the fast speed charging, and for all the power it gives you, the battery carries an affordable price. Downside is the battery isn't compatible with most popular Ultrabook PCs.

Editor's Ratings (1-5): 4
What's Hot: Slim and light, has both USB-C and USB-A ports, huge capacity.
What's Not: Doesn't work with popular Ultrabooks with USB-C charging ports.
Price: $99.95
Website: Kanex

Reviewed by: Tong Zhang



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