PowerOak has truly started making a name for themselves in the power station/solar generator world. They now have amazing reviews on their products and good customer service. With the releases of their other units like the AC50, EB150 and EB240 they have started capturing the attention of everyone out there looking for dependable backup power.
The Bluetti AC200 has surely caught the eye of every prepper out there, or at least everyone who wants a reliable backup power option. The big question everyone is asking is how well it stacks up against the Titan? What kind of power usage can be expected from it? And how well does it work in real-world usage?
The AC200 is definitely one of the top solar generators out there according to many reviews. They have taken a careful look at what people really want. People do not want to charge their cell phone, camera or drone at the beach while partying with friends as so many of the other solar generator companies like to advertise. People want a serious power backup option for when the lights go out. People want to run their fridges, freezers, CPAP machines, TVs, ice makers, power tools and so on.
People want to be able to run their RVs, campsites, emergency locations and run their essentials without worries. Solar generators are not cheap, so people want to know that it is going to work for them when they need it the most.
Finally, companies like PowerOak are starting to put real batteries into their units like the AC200. The AC200 has a Lithium Ion (Lithium NMC) battery that is rated to 1,700wh. One of the best features about the battery is that is rated to 51.8v which makes it much more efficient because of the higher voltage. Systems that use 12v are not nearly as efficient as the AC200.
Having a battery with a higher voltage means that there is less efficiency loss between the inverter and battery converting the 51.8v charge into 120v charge. Going from 12v to 120v is much harder and requires more inefficiencies.
The full draw capacity of the battery is 2,000w. This means that even though it has a 1,700wh battery it can pull at a higher rate than what its own capacity is which is incredible. Older systems like the Inergy Apex and Kodiak suffered from not being able to run its full capacity and you were limited to a small system. Even the new Inergy Flex says that it can only run 1,500w continuously for up to 80% of the battery capacity. This was a big problem when people showed their reviews of those systems. The AC200 does not fall subject to that issue.
No one really knows how but PowerOak has somehow figured out how to get the Lithium Ion battery up to a rating of 2,500 lifecycles which is an industry record for lithium-NMC batteries. Since this exceeds all other units out there this may be something to look into further because no one really knows how that would be possible unless that rating is based only draining to system down to 80% or 90% and then back up to 100%. Either way, it is a powerful factor when it comes to how long the battery will last in this unit.
The Bluetti AC200 boasts a 2,000w Pure Sine Wave inverter which makes it quite easy to run heavy duty equipment off of it. More common things such as hot plates, coffee makers, personal heaters and so on will be amazingly easy to run off it because of its 2,000w inverter capacity. If you go look at many reviews online it is obvious that 2,000w of inverter capacity is generally enough power for basic things.
Keeping in mind that the battery is limited to 1,700wh but most items such as hot plates, toasters, microwaves, coffee makers and so on generally only use power for short amounts of time. This means that if you run a microwave that is rated to 1,800w for 3 mins you will only use up 90wh of total capacity which is barely anything off of the 700w of solar on Bluetti AC2001,700wh battery. (1,800w ÷ 60min = 30wh/minute of use).
One of the more interesting points about the AC200 is that is has a huge peak potential for large surges. It is normal and expected that the surge value of any good solar generator is at least two times the continuous running limit. That would mean that the AC200 should have a surge value of 4,000w since it has a continuous rate of 2,000w.
But the AC200 has a surge value of 4,800w! That is 2.4x the continuous running capacity which breaks the mold on having twice as much power for surging. This makes it easier to run heavier items such as chop saws in the shop, small A/C units and other items that surge really high.
One of the major flaws with their other units like the EB150 and EB240 was that the inverters were rated to 1,000w of continuous draw and only 1,200w of peak capacity which is nothing! Many times, while testing those units I would have my fridge and freezer surge at the same time which would cause the system to overload and stop working. The worst part is it does not really tell you that it is overloaded, and it just stops working and later you find that your fridge is warm. That is a big problem.
The AC200 does not have that problem because it has such a high peak rating. They finally got that one right. Being able to run something like a 5,000BTU window A/C unit can be extremely helpful during blackouts and emergencies, especially during hurricane season when it is very warm outside.
The PowerOak Bluetti AC200 comes with an MPPT charge controller which is to be expected in today’s solar generators. No longer can companies come out with a “great system” that has a PWM charge controller such as the Goal Zero Yeti 1400. MPPT charge controllers get much more power from solar panels on sunny days and especially cloudy days.
Charging Cord DiagramThe AC200 MPPT charge controller has a solar input rating of 35-150v and 12a. It is rated to let up to 700w of solar go through it. The beauty of having such a large charge parameter is that it is capable of “over-paneling.” That means that I can install more than 700w of solar panels on the system to ensure I am getting the full 700w charge and that I can lengthen how many peak solar hours I get each day.
The AC200 solar charge input is nothing to what the Titan can do but it’s still pretty good. The Titan’s solar input rating is 35-145v and 30amps. So, it is a little more than twice as powerful. But then on top of that, the Titan has two MPPT charge controllers and can input up to 2,000w of solar which is unmatched by anyone out there.
That being said, the AC200 still has the second-best solar input of any other solar generator out there. Unless you consider the Inergy Flex system which has an expandable solar input capability. The downside to the Inergy Flex’s solar input expandability is the cost. It is cost-prohibitive, meaning it costs so much to get more solar power going into the Flex that it is not worth the investment to do that.
With the AC200 I can easily take seven 100w solar panels which on average will make about 21v and 6a. When I string seven of them together in series, I will make 147v and 6a. That allows me to easily be within the charge parameter.
But wait there’s more! Since the charge controller on the AC200 can go up to 150v and 12a I can easily add a second string of seven panels and have a total of 14 panels. This makes a series/parallel combo connection and would put my solar charge rate at 147v and 12a which is right at the limit of the charge parameter.
The beauty of doing that is that I will be able to make 700w of power very easily and I can do earlier in the day and later into the evening when compared to just having 700w of solar panels connected. Having the two strings of 700w in panels allows me to ensure I am making 700w of power for up to 8 hours a day during the summer months. That is quite impressive.
That means it has the ability to charge and run up to 5,600wh per day, during the summer. That is enough to charge the battery over three times. This means it is quite easy to be running my fridge, fans, chargers, and devices all day long while still getting a full charge on the battery. Normal power production of 5 peak solar hours a day is about 3,500wh which is still plenty to run devices all day long and having a full battery at the end of the day.
It can charge from 0% to 100% in as little a 2.4hrs if nothing is being run on it while charging. It can charge the battery while running other devices.
Wall and Car Charging
It has a car charger! Not that it will charge quickly but it’s always nice to have a backup source if push comes to shove. It will charge in 17 hours from a car charger. That means it is charging at about a rate of 100w per hour.
The wall charger is quite fast and will charge the unit up in about 4 hours from any wall outlet or even off of a gas or diesel generator. Having a fuel generator is a great backup for a solar generator like the Bluetti AC200.
Weight and Dimensions
The AC200 is not a skinny little unit. It boasts fairly big power and for that reason, it is a bit heavy. Weighing in at 57lbs this unit is not for the faint of heart, literally. It’s heavy. The handles on the unit are very ergonomic which makes it easy to grip and move around but that is only if you can handle the weight.
That is why I love the Titan systems so much is that the battery disconnects from the main unit and the weight can be easily cut in half, so it is easy to move. The AC200 is still absolutely worth it and is a great unit but you may want to consider a furniture dolly to move it around easier.
The dimensions are 16.5in x 11in. x 15.2in. This image shows how it fits in the front seat of a car to give an idea of how large it is. It’s not small, and that’s a good thing. It is capable of powering so much which requires weight and size.