Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel Review

Goal Zero Nomad Solar Panel

10/10 Based on Ken's Review
Purchase From REI For $80
Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel

Today I'm reviewing the Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel which I purchased from REI for around $80.

I walked into the store wanting something that could charge my cellphone while out camping or out on the water. I've made devices for this in the past but decided to finally break down and buy something commercially available. I must say, I'm very impressed with the Nomad 7.

There's something great about harnessing the power of the sun. The first time I plugged my phone into the Nomad 7 and saw the charging light come on I felt somehow liberated from the constraints of the wall outlet. Now I could camp indefinitely, editing this site from my smartphone, until I ran out of food, clean water, or more importantly, toilet paper. It was a great feeling.

There are smaller solar panels out there, but I wonder how they compare with a smaller surface area. I love the Nomad 7 for is large surface area and yet slim design. I definitely recommend picking one up over the smaller devices.

Lately I've been using the Nomad 7 not only for camping but also for charging my cell phone while sitting outside of the coffee shop. There are never plugs outside most coffee shops. At least one out three people passing by stop and ask me what this device is. They're always amazed when I tell them I'm charging my cellphone with sunlight.

Pros:

  • Large surface area generating 7 watts of power in direct sunlight.
  • Thin notebook style design.
  • USB(5V) and car adapter(12V).

Cons:

Charging Times

The Nomad 7 can charge usb devices as well as anything that uses a car charger. I've charged my Samsung Galaxy S4 Smartphone from fully drained to fully charged in about 1.5 hours in direct sunlight. It's taken as long as three hours on overcast days but at least the phone still charged. Smaller unites I've used in the past would only charge my phone in direct sunlight, anything less and the phone didn't recognize it was connected to a charger. The larger surface area of this solar panel is definitely beneficial in that regard.

Size & Weight

The Nomad 7 closed measures approximately 7" x 9" when closed and 12" x 9" when open. The unit with car charging adapter on board weighs 1 pound, 1.7 ounces.

Click Here To Purchase The Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel From REI

Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel package Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel Front Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel Inside Pouch Goal Zero Nomad 7 Charger Goal Zero Nomad 7 Car Charger Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel Open Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel Car Adapter Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel Side View

Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel
July 5th, 2013
10/10 stars
The Goal Zero Nomad 7 Solar Panel is well made, weather resistant solar panel with a very large surface area for its price.
Comments:

Ken wrote:

After some time I've noticed scuff marks on the solar cells where the two halves meet when the unit is closed. Apparently the cells are not perfectly flat and come in contact with each other while closed. I've cut a piece of cloth to size (roughly 6inch by 9inch) to slip between the cells while closed to prevent further scuff marks. This isn't a huge issue but scuffing of the clear plastic surface will at least to some extent degrade light transmission.

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