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What auxiliary battery packs are good for iPhone?
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By Ryan N
From Palo Alto
May 18, 2013
RJN
I've been looking at some packs to charge my iPhone when away from civilization(for the music). They range greatly from $17 to $100+. They all seem to need to be charged from a USB source. I was hoping to find one that would have batteries I could just use and replace, but can't find one. Anyone have expierence with the solar assisted packs? Any help or direction would be appreciated.

-Ryan

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By Aric Datesman
May 18, 2013
No experience with it, but I saw one the other day that took AA batteries. Was at the grocery store, I think, ~$25 and from one of the big battery manufacturers (Duracell, etc). Thought about getting it to solve my battery issues, but decided to pass.

Btw, if you're a tinkerer building a MintyBoost is an option. Basically a DIY battery pack housed in an Altoids tin. ladyada.net/make/mintyboost/

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By MJMobes
From The land of steady habits
May 18, 2013
modern man
I have a great one called SolarRestore that is the size of a phone, has batteries inside and a solar panel on it. It works great for my droid. Apple ,for some reason, has blocked their "I" products from being compatible with most of these solar charger products.

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By Justin Brunson
From Broomfield CO
May 18, 2013
I love this lil guy: store.bruntonoutdoor.com/porta...

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By NorCalNomad
From San Francisco
May 18, 2013
Fall Guy wrote:
Apple ,for some reason, has blocked their "I" products from being compatible with most of these solar charger products.


It's not so much blocked as the iPhone is very particular about the voltage it's getting.

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By Aric Datesman
May 18, 2013
NorCalNomad wrote:
It's not so much blocked as the iPhone is very particular about the voltage it's getting.


Reading further on the MintyBoost link above, it looks like it's not so much particular about the supplied voltage as particular about what's going on with the not-used-for-charging data lines as a way to force sales of Apple branded charging plugs. Good explanation (including circuit diagrams) if you follow the link.

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By Ty Morrison-Heath
From Bozeman, MT
May 18, 2013
Profile Photo <br />
amazon.com/gp/product/B009USAJ...

I have this one and love it. Get about 4 full iPhone charges off it. Only problem is it takes a while to charge and is a bit heavy for true backpacking.

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By Ryan N
From Palo Alto
May 18, 2013
RJN
Thanks guys.

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By Nicholas Webb
From Vail, CO
May 19, 2013
I use this for $10

amazon.com/Burro-Mobile-Charge...

If one of my batteries goes out, I can replace just that individual cell.

-Nick

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By Maurice Chaunders
May 19, 2013
Colombian Crack
I use a boost case. It just provides one extra full charge, but it uses micro USB and that might open up some options for other chargers. It's also good for adding a little more charge for one long day out.

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By Josh Olson
From madison, wisconsin
May 19, 2013
Looking at a 5.7 crack with Nick
Biolite stoves are pretty nice, definitely worth looking into at least.

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By mattm
From TX
May 20, 2013
Grande Grotto
All sorts of options out there. As you note, having one that runs on AA batteries adds versatility to the device and is an option I'd strongly look for. All the stand-alone LiON battery packs mean you'll need to charge it (usually via USB which can be SLOW). AA based packs allow you to use any AA battery which is really nice.

One that hasn't been mentioned yet is the GoalZero Guide 10 PLUS pack . It runs on 4 AAs and, unlike the Burro listed above can also CHARGE batteries if needed, both from USB and Solar Sources (they sell a combo Guide 10 PLUS and solar panel kit if you need it).

4x "normal" NiMH AAs will get you 8,000maH. Top Tier NiMH AAs will get you 10,000maH

Eneloop AAs are easy to source for more power.

Regardless of what pack you choose, be sure it puts out a minimum of 1 AMP from the USB port. iPhones prefer 1 AMP to charge correctly (iPads prefer 2+ amps)

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