Portable AC Power - What Do You Recommend?

For years we've been using a Xantrex portable power pack, as we talked about in our Portable Power for Video Surveillance post.

It's done pretty well, but it's starting to wear out. Before I go out and just buy another one, I wanted to ask what everyone is using (if anything) these days? Is there a newer, better option?

It needs a duplex (at least) 120V AC receptacle, and wheels, and can't require fossil fuels. Those are pretty much my feature requirements. It should be able to power an 8-port PoE switch for a few hours. Yes, I know that varies, but generalize with me.

And yes, I know that I could likely take the Xantrex apart and replace the battery, but it may not fix my issues and it may be more work than it's worth.


IMO you're wasting efficiency and runtime with that approach, converting 12VDC to 120VAC to 48VDC.

Get a 12V battery pack and a 12V->48V step-up transformer. Run your switch off the 48VDC.

That would let you run a dozen or more typical PoE devices, plus gives you the flexibility to tie it to a large or small battery, depending on how much run time you need.

You could even package it into a "giant backpack" ;)

If you still need the 12VAC for something, buy a small inverter and use it when needed, but I generally get by with just the 12V/48V setup. You can find laptop power supplies for all the major brands that take a 12VDC input as well, so if you need to run your laptop for longer than the native battery allows you can do that as well.

You could even package it into a "giant backpack" ;)

Related: Brian Karas Lives ... And He Has A Huge Battery Backpack

Lol, thanks.

Sometimes we do need or want to run things off of 120V. Any ideas for that?

Btw, I was the one who originally got the Xandex but I've never really liked it, as its bulky and does not have great run time.

Sometimes we do need or want to run things off of 120V. Any ideas for that?

Yes, buy a simple inverter sized for what you need, but only use it when you actually need 120V. I think I've had to break my inverter out once. Most of the portable battery packs have a cigarette lighter outlet, and most of the small/mid-sized inverters have the same setup for power. Easy to plug it in when/if needed. That also makes the whole setup easy to run off a vehicle 12VDC power outlet for times when you're doing testing at a remote location (if you do any of that).

also, a 12v to poe adapter

http://www.balticnetworks.com/tycon-power-802-3af-9-36vdc-in-48vdc-out-24w-dc-to-dc-converter-and-802-3af-poe-inserter.html?gclid=COr2iZLA0cgCFUyAaQodzSAMMA

I'm using this for a solar power application for an axis camera and cellular backhaul