Before we delve into the details of our Goal Zero Yeti 1500X Review, let me take a moment to give the Goal Zero team a nod for the inspiring organization they’ve created. This is a young brand but they’ve laid down the foundation for their future, positioning the brand as a leader; visionaries with cutting-edge solar power technology at the core of their business.
Gas technology is being replaced by battery power at a rate much quicker than anyone would have predicted even a few years ago. I’m a believer in the electric & battery movement. Consider this a 2nd industrial revolution.
Over the past decade, Goal Zero has established itself as the premier solution when it comes to solar generators and portable power stations. Part of the reason behind their industry dominance is the fact that they were the first company to provide customers with a reliable and convenient all-in-one solution for powering appliances with solar energy.
They have their own power stations, proprietary fast charging technologies, solar panels, and accessories (such as LED lights). I’d like to think of Goal Zero as the Apple of portable solar power. Sure, they are a bit more expensive than the competition but once you buy into Goal Zero products, you buy into their well-crafted ecosystem where everything just works seamlessly.
Goal Zero power stations are well-engineered and feature excellent inverters with higher surge output compared to similar products from other manufacturers.
Goal Zero’s latest “Yeti X” series of portable power stations come with lithium ion NMC batteries and MPPT charge controllers to maximize solar charging efficiency.
VIDEO | WOW! A Monster — 6000W YETI X / ►Model : 6000X
Goal Zero / YETI X SERIES
500X Model : Power laptops, smartphones & other low-draw devices. (Read our review)
►OVERVIEW | YETI X Models
Back in January of 2020 during CES, Goal Zero announced their Yeti “X” series which was an incremental upgrade over the previous Yeti models. They had replacements for their older models, all the way from the Yeti 150 to the Yeti 3000. And they also announced an absolute beast of a power station, the Yeti 6000X (as you can guess from the name, it has a 6000Wh battery).
So, what makes the “X” series different? These are still regular old power stations with many of the same ports, but have improved batteries and inverters. As a result of these improvements, Goal Zero is able to reduce the weight and size while offering similar or even more capacity. Plus, the new X models have faster solar charging along with better 12V DC ports.
The Yeti 1500X and any models above it are equipped with the most powerful inverters Goal Zero has ever put in their power stations. You get higher power output (more amps) which is essential for running heavy draw appliances like heaters, drills, dryers, ovens, etc. These new inverters boast 2000W continuous, and 3500W surge.
The Yeti 1000X, and the more powerful models (IE. 3000X), have improved wall charging speeds, thanks to improved power supplies which Goal Zero claims can drop wall charging times by up to 50 percent. Plus, these units have 600W APP (Anderson Power Pole) ports for insane charging speeds from both 120V AC outlets as well as solar panels.
Need More POWER? Consider the YETI 3000X
Yeti X models also have newer, larger batteries. Models like the old Yeti 400 are equipped with AGM lead acid batteries that are heavy and don’t have the discharge capacity of lithium batteries. Lead acid batteries aren’t supposed to be discharged below 50 percent capacity, plus they perform worse in hotter climates. Goal Zero did eventually release lithium versions of their older models like the Yeti 400 Lithium, which were much lighter and performed better. The new Yeti X lineup takes this concept further. For instance, the successor to the Yeti 400 Lithium is the Yeti 500X which has 20 percent more capacity despite being smaller and lighter than the Yeti 400 Lithium.
I feel like the larger inverters and increased battery capacities are nice, but the real highlight of the show is the MPPT charge controller that was previously only available for flagship Yeti models. With the introduction of the X series, it is included with every single Yeti. Starting with the smallest model, which is the Yeti 200X. A MPPT or Maximum Power Point Tracking charge controller is better for solar charging than a standard PWM controller (pulse-width modulation). Essentially, it improves solar charging efficiency which reduces charging time by up to 30 percent (even with the exact same solar panel as before).
Review | Yeti 1500X Power Station
- Lithium-ion battery : Safe, clean, portable power
- Ideal for : Camping, tailgating, off-grid events, workshops, and emergency home backup.
- Power : Running = 2000W AC / Starting = 3500W
- Innovative Goal Zero inverter is designed to handle surges from power tools, medical devices, and home appliances, including full-size refrigerators. Impressive!
- Outlets : Seven different port options :
- 1x USB Type-A : 5 VDC up to 2.4 A (12 W Max), Regulated
- 1x USB Type-C : 5-12 VDC, up to 3.0A (18 W Max), Regulated
- 1x USB Type-C : Power Delivery (PD) (Input/ Output): 5-20 VDC, up to 3.0 A (60 W Max), Regulated
- 1x 6mm Port (Output, 6 mm) : 12 VDC, up to 10 A (120 W Max)
- 1x 12 V Car Socket : 12 VDC, up to 10 A (120 W Max), Regulated
- 2x 3-Prong Grounded : 120 VAC 60 Hz, 2.5 A (300 W, 1200 W Surge) via 120 V AC Inverter
- Unlimited Power : Charge the Yeti 1500X from the sun with their portable solar panels. Can also power from the wall outlet. Versatile.
- Integrated MPPT charge controller. Ultra efficient solar charging.
- Monitor, control, and optimize your power usage from anywhere with Yeti App 3.0. Features remote control of power in/out, real-time power consumption notifications, and charging profiles to optimize your battery life. ►Learn more about the Yeti App 3.0
- Weight : 45.6 lbs.
“The Yeti 1500X offers an excellent balance of portability and capacity for both homeowners and outdoor enthusiasts who need a solar generator to power their appliances. It runs everything from a fridge to power tools, and does so reliably thanks to the new and improved inverter. The Yeti 1500X even has Wi-Fi connectivity so you can manage ports and charging profiles remotely.”
Goal Zero’s Yeti 1500X is as much of an outdoor power station as it is an indoor one. This is one of the only solar power generators that is portable enough to be carried by one person, but also powerful enough to run most appliances in your home. And even though I am calling it a solar power generator, most people will refer to it is an indoor generator or portable power station. Basically, it is a giant lithium-ion NMC battery paired to a beefy inverter.
Flip the lid and you’ll find some practical storage.
The real advancement Goal Zero has made with their X lineup of Yeti power stations is in solar charging speed. Compared to older Yeti models, these new Yeti X models can charge up to 30 percent faster from solar power using the exact same panels. That’s because every Yeti X has a MPPT charge controller now, unlike previously when only top-end models had it.
But before I talk about what makes the Yeti 1500X so special, let’s discuss why anyone would even need a 50 lb. battery station. I too was thinking the same thing, why not get a portable generator instead? It runs as long as you keep the tank filled with gas, and you get more power for the money you spend.
It’s only logical to get a regular gas powered generator if you are serious about powering your house during emergencies, right? However, I took a look at Google Trends data and found out that over the past few years people have become more interested in solar generators and portable power stations. The world is quickly moving away from gas power. The Tesla Powerwall is another good example of the future of power storage.
With the Covid-19 pandemic hitting us hard, people were forced to shut themselves in during lock-down. And a lot of these people live in apartments or condos. Now that’s a place where you can’t use regular gas-powered generators. Not just because everybody in a 100-foot radius will hear it running and send noise complaints to the authorities, but also because of the toxic fumes. Living in an apartment usually means you have people living both below and above you (unless you’re on the ground floor). And toxic fumes from a generator running in your balcony will get into your home as well as the floor beneath you. CO poisoning kills dozens every year, and you literally can’t see or smell it until it’s too late.
Portable power stations are the only “generator” type capable of running indoors. They are virtually noiseless (just the battery cooling fan makes noise), and emit zero fumes. Plus, if you have solar panels installed in your home you can essentially “generate” electricity from them and store that in your power station.
There is a reason Goal Zero’s sales figures shot up dramatically in 2020, and it wasn’t just the global pandemic. 2020 had a lot of other stuff going on aside from the viral breakout. Like the wildfires which damaged a significant chunk of the power grid in the west coast. And the hurricanes, which shut down power to several homes for days or even weeks.
People these days are more concerned about the environment, and want clean power wherever they can afford it. Plus, Goal Zero even makes a home integration kit (basically a transfer switch) so you can power up to 4 essential circuits with your Yeti (only supported on the Yeti 1000 and above).
Improved Lithium-Ion NMC Battery —
The earlier Goal Zero power stations used AGM lead-acid batteries. These are extremely heavy and take eons to charge up fully. Plus, you can’t discharge them as hard as a lithium ion battery otherwise you’ll reduce their lifespan. When Goal Zero switched to lithium-ion NMC batteries they significantly reduced the weight of their power stations while simultaneously increasing charging speed and capacity.
The Yeti X lineup has the very same lithium-ion NMC battery tech as last generation, but this time they are using even larger batteries. Despite that, they worked some magic to keep the weight and size from ballooning up. For example, the 1516Wh battery in the Yeti 1500X has exactly 6.3% more capacity than the 1425Wh battery of the Yeti 1400 Lithium. However, the 1500X weighs just 4.5% more at 45.64lbs (vs 43.7lbs on the Yeti 1400 Lithium).
►YETI 1500X : Single Cell Equivalent Capacity: 421Ah @ 3.6V
MPPT Charge Controller —
I consider the battery and charge controller to be one unit, both are interdependent on each other. A high capacity battery is useless if it takes forever to charge, and a really good charge controller doesn’t matter if the battery runs out juice after powering a TV for 2 hours. The Yeti 1500X has both – lots of capacity and an advanced charge controller.
The MPPT charge controller allows you to get more efficient charging from solar panels, speeding up charging speed from solar by up to 30 percent in optimal conditions. This is a feature that was absent from the predecessor, i.e. Yeti 1400 Lithium. That model uses a standard PWM charge controller.
And here’s what surprised me even more – Goal Zero even upgraded the standard 120V AC wall charger for the new Yeti 1500X. The old Yeti 1400 Lithium took 25 hours to charge fully from a wall outlet, using its 5A charger. The Yeti 1500X (which has an extra 100Wh of capacity) charges from the wall in just 14 hours. And while the old Yeti 1400 Lithium had a maximum solar charge input of 360 watts, the Yeti 1500X can accept up to 600 watts of power through solar charging. It even takes 600W from an Anderson Power Pole port which can fill up the battery in just 3 hours.
This is what I consider to be the biggest advantage of the Yeti 1500X over previous Yeti models – its ability to charge in nearly half the time. We all know the biggest bottleneck with portable power stations is charging time, and hopefully in the future these numbers will become even lower. Once that happens, people will seriously consider swapping their gas generators for solar generators.
The Yeti 1400 Lithium didn’t have Wi-Fi connectivity initially, but Goal Zero later introduced a newer model called the 1400 Lithium with Wi-Fi. This was more expensive, and it allowed you to remotely control the power station using an app on your phone. The Yeti 1500X has this feature by default, and the app has also been updated since so you can do even more stuff on it. You just need a Wi-Fi router in the house and your goal zero Yeti 1500X will obey your commands even if you’re on the other side of the planet.
👁 YouTube VIDEO | YETI Home Link : Connect to transfer switch
The app lets you turn specific ports on or off, update firmware, monitor the power consumption and charge time, etc. With the new update, you can even set charging profiles to maintain battery health. You can make it so that the battery never goes below 20 percent without charging, and you can set an upper limit on the charge levels. Just like with your phone or laptop, the app gives you various options for battery management – performance, battery saver, balance, and custom.
Upgraded Inverter —
The Yeti 1500X has a new 2000W continuous and 3500W surge pure sine wave inverter module, which lets it power tools and appliances that the previous Yeti 1400 Lithium just can’t. I just wish Goal Zero had more AC outlets to go with the added battery capacity and new inverter, as well as some more space between the outlets themselves.
Tip: If you want a more affordable portable power station with similar capacity, check out the Delta 1300 from EcoFlow by reading our comprehensive review (see more below). This is the fastest charging portable power station on the market, going from 0% to 80% in just 1 hour. And that’s with a standard 120V AC wall outlet. Sure, it doesn’t have the capacity of the Yeti 1500X, but you’re also paying much less and getting a power station that charges even faster. It doesn’t have fancy features like Wi-Fi connectivity, and EcoFlow doesn’t sell a home integration kit like Goal Zero. If you want functionality and fast charging for a solid price, nothing beats the Delta 1300.
For the facts, read our indepth Review of the Delta 1300 Power Station. For some reason many people don’t know about it but when you take a deep look at the features and quality you’ll quickly realize how fantastic this Delta battery generator is. Lucky for you, we’ve already dissected the Delta 1300. I recommend you read it so you can compare it to the Goal Zero YETI 1500X — which is also excellent. Don’t get me wrong, Goal Zero and their “X-Series” have truly raised the bar for consumers.
My only piece of advice, in addition to everything you’ve already read, is to consider the Delta 1300. You have options. Stick to your budget. Times are tough because of this pandemic so don’t spend more than you can afford.
DELTA 1300 Power Station —
A Closer Look : DELTA 1300 Power Station — 1800W Run / 3300W Start
🔸 Compatible With Any Solar panel Input Up To 400W.
- Recharges at 10 times the speed of most portable power stations on the market
- Large inverter load enables EcoFlow DELTA to power most home appliances and heavy-duty DIY tools under 1800W (3300W Surge, Pure Sine Wave) with 1260Wh capacity.
- ULTRA-Fast Recharge Times :
- 1.6 Hours (AC)
- 10-12 Hours (12/24V Car Adapter)
- 4 Hours (Using 4x110W Solar Panels simultaneously with full sun
- Management Systems Integrated : BMS, Over Voltage Protection, Overload Protection, Over Temperature Protection, Short Circuit Protection, Low Temperature Protection, Low Voltage Protection, Over-current Protection
- Outlets : POWER 13 DEVICES SIMULTANEOUSLY
- AC Output (x6) / AC Output (x4): 1800W Run / 3300W = Start — 120Vac (60Hz) / 230AC (50Hz)
- USB-A Output (x2) : 5V DC, 2.4A, 12W Maximum per port
- USB-A Fast Charge (x2) : 5V DC, 9V DC, 12V DC, 2.4A, 28W Max, per port
- USB-C Output (x2) : 5V DC, 9V DC, 15V DC, 20V DC, 3A, 60W Max, per port
- Car Power Output (x1) : 108.8W,13.6V DC,8A max
- Net Weight : 30.9lbs (14kg)
- Dimensions : 15.7 x 8.3 x 10.6 in (40 x 21 x 27 cm)
Most Powerful Portable Power Station : Goal Zero YETI 6000X
- Smart Phone (12 Wh): 501
- Tablet (30 Wh): 201
- Laptop (50 Wh): 120
- POV Camera (5 Wh): 1202
- DSLR Camera (18 Wh): 334
- Head Lamp (5 Wh): 1202
Hours / Run Time
- Light-a-Life 350 (4.5 Wh): 1336
- Light Bulb (11 Wh): 547
- CPAP (65 Wh): 93
- TV (42″ LED) (100 Wh): 60
- Pellet Grill (60 Wh): 100
- Microwave (1000 Wh): 6
- Portable Fridge (25 Wh): 241
- Mini Fridge (35 Wh): 172
- Full Size Refrigerator (55 Wh): 110
- Circular Saw (13 Amp) (1500 Wh): 4
— Calculating Your Desired Battery Capacity
Whether you’re looking for an emergency home backup solution or something to power your laptop and phone during a road trip, there is a Goal Zero Yeti for you. The easiest way to decide how much power you need is to look up the wattage rating on your appliance.
Say for example, you wish to power a coffee grinder in your RV with a portable power station. The smaller ones draw around 150 watts, while more powerful coffee grinders need around 300 watts. If you wish to run your 300W coffee grinder for 20 seconds, it will consume 300W x (20/3600) = 1.66Wh (Watt hours) of energy. Even a small power station like the Yeti 500X has more than enough capacity to run your coffee grinder several times a day, for a few weeks in a row. However, it should be capable of supplying at least 300 continuous watts through the inverter.
Let’s move to a different use case, like a CPAP machine – something many of you might be using to breathe more easily during sleep. CPAP machines draw around 30 to 60 watts of power on average, peaking out at just over 100 watts. If your CPAP machine has a continuous draw of 50 watts, you need 50Wh of energy to run it for 1 hour. So for a comfortable night’s sleep, you need around 400 to 500 Watt-hours of capacity in your power station battery. It is safer to oversize the power station by 20 percent since you might not have it at 100 percent charge all the time before going to sleep, plus you might sleep extra hours some days. So a buffer of extra capacity is always nice to have.
YETI 500X / 500 Watts : Clean Power
If you’re trying to power a phone with your portable power station, you can get by with pretty much any model. Even the smaller power stations like the YETI 500X or the Jackery Explorer 240. The 500X can recharge your phone up to 42 times & your laptop up to 10x. So, yes, plenty of juice for most people. The Jackery is a 240W model, which is great for small devices. Ultimately you have to determine what your usage will be. Neither of these small power stations will power your fridge. Know your needs.
Note : You can’t directly compare mAh numbers between a laptop battery and a phone battery. That’s because laptop batteries operate at a higher voltage, storing significantly more energy.
The iPhone 12 Pro Max has a 3687 mAh battery, while the new MacBook Air with Apple’s M1 chip has a 4379 mAh battery. On paper, it doesn’t seem like the laptop battery is much bigger. In reality, the MacBook Air’s battery has a capacity of 49.9Wh while the iPhone 12 Pro Max battery comes in at just 14.13Wh. That’s because capacity is mAh x voltage, and the MacBook battery can discharge a lot more power due to its higher voltage. Even if you’re charging a laptop, remember that laptop batteries top out around 160 Wh. So, a basic 400 or 500Wh portable power station will let you charge your laptop 2 to 3 times (enough for the entire weekend).
If you’re trying to run something like a cordless drill, check the specs on the battery. You should have two numbers – volts and Amp-hours. Multiply the two to get watt-hours. For instance, a 20V 6Ah battery can store 120Wh of energy which is roughly what you need to recharge it (before losses). Corded tools will require more power. So you have to check both their running and starting watts to see if the inverter on your power station can handle them. If you’re trying to run tools, don’t settle for anything less than a 1000Wh portable power station. I feel that’s the bare minimum for running things like circular saws and drills.
►Take it Anywhere : Jackery Explorer 500
Excellent buy if you’re someone who uses a CPAP or BiPAP.
- Running Power : 518W (24Ah, 21.6V) / Starting : 1000W
- 1x AC Output: 110V
- Car Port: DC 12V, 10A
- 3x USB-A port：5V, 2.4A
- 2x 6.5mm*1.4mm DC outputs: 12V, 7A( for DIY)
- Input: 8mm DC, 12V~30V (100W Max)
- Dimensions: 11.8″ x 7.6″ x 9.5″
- Weight: 13.3 lbs
The Story Of Goal Zero | How It All Started
Goal Zero says that they “started as a cause, looking for a business”. Their founder Robert Workman always believed in giving people the freedom to do what they want, and that is how the company started out. They started with a vision to provide clean and reliable power to anyone, anywhere in the world. And since their founder was in Congo at the time, he saw how difficult it was for the Congolese to sustain themselves without jobs or business. There was no light in schools or homes once the sun set. Goal Zero’s very first product was a solar kit comprised of a solar panel, battery, and LED light. They shipped these worldwide, including the Democratic Republic of Congo.
What started as a humanitarian cause evolved into the global leader of portable solar power. The founder of Goal Zero created TIFIE (Teaching Individuals and Family Independents through Enterprise). TIFIE is a Utah-based non-profit org dedicated to lifting people out of poverty by providing food, shelter, power, water, education and job creation.
Eventually, Goal Zero introduced the Escape 150 to the market in 2009. This was an all-in-one portable power solution for charging phones and laptops, it combined an inverter and battery into a compact package. And you could pair it with the Escape 30 solar panel briefcase for power on the go, away from the grid. Since then, they have been innovating constantly and pushing the envelope further in the field of portable solar power. Solar powered lights, solar panels, portable power stations, power banks, the list goes on.
Where Are Goal Zero Products Made?
According to Goal Zero, their products are “designed, engineered, and tested in Salt Lake City, Utah” while the manufacturing is done in China. You get a 24 month warranty on all the Yeti X models, starting with the Yeti 200X.