This compact Bluetti EB2A portable power station is a 268Wh capacity unit designed to be a convenient, super portable power source for your smaller devices, such as when camping or on the road.
I’ve reviewed a number of portable power stations here on Trail & Kale, the best of which are featured in our portable power stations buyer’s guide, so I was excited to see how Bluetti’s bestselling compact power station compares to other brands’ offerings in this space.
This Bluetti EB3A portable power station review explains the key features, what I love/dislike about it, and how it performs in a variety of scenarios, including what uses it’s great for, and when you may want to consider an alternative size unit to supply your power.
As regular Trail & Kale readers will know already, this review, like our other outdoor gear reviews also includes plenty of photos of the power station’s key features to give you a good feel for what it’s like to use.
Bluetti EB3A review contents:
- Bluetti EB3A – overview of this rechargeable power station’s key features
- Battery life – How long does the Bluetti power station last between charges?
- How many devices can the Bluetti power at once?
- How to recharge the EB3A portable power station
- Cost and where to buy
- Review Summary
- Image Gallery
Bluetti EB3A – overview of this rechargeable power station’s key features
It has 9 outlets that you can use to power devices at the same time
The outlets include 2x AC outlets, a USB-C outlet, 2x USB-A (old style) outlets and DC outlets, as well as a wireless charging pad on top.
It has a capacity of 268Wh (watt-hours), which is a measurement of how long it will last between charges – this number reduces quicker with higher output usage.
The 600w output, which will surge up to 1,200w
This power station is best suited to powering or charging devices that don’t draw too intensively. So it’s not for things such as hairdryers or fans.
This output capability is, however, significantly higher than other similarly-sized portable power stations, with similar watt-hour capacity (such as the Jackery Explorer 300).
It weighs 10lb and has compact dimensions
The rectangular shape, without a molded handle that sticks up on top (like other brands’ designs can do), mean it’s easy to store and pack for camping and road trips.
The dimension are around 10 x 7 x 7.2 inches.
The 10lb weight is light for a portable power station, making it easy for most people to carry with one hand, using the handle on top, that folds away when not needed.
Clear screen and monitoring
To turn the screen on, press any of the power buttons on the front. This will tell you key information such as what percentage of charge it has left, and if it’s in use, what the current input or output readings are.
To use either the DC or AC charging, press the button again to turn those outputs on.
If you like to control your gadgets using apps on your phone, then you can also monitor and control the power station using Bluetooth and the Bluetti app.
Range of charging options
Interestingly, it comes with not just its own AC charging cable for charging from a wall outlet (which is pleasingly just a cable with no ‘brick’ inverter on it), but also with a solar charging cable… however, you don’t get a solar panel when you just buy the power station on its own (this is an option if you want to buy the solar panel packaged with the power station).
In theory, perhaps you could use the cable to connect it to other brands’ solar panels, but it seemed a bit strange to me that they provide the solar cable and not a 12v DC charging cable that you could use without buying anything else.
While it doesn’t come with the 12v DC charging cable, you can buy one of those for charging from your vehicle – they sell them for $9.90 on their website.
You can see a list of all the geekier technical details on the EB3A product page of Bluetti’s website (click the ‘tech specs’ tab halfway down the page).
Handy LED light
There’s a handy LED light on the front of the power station. Pressing the light ‘on’ button cycles through two brightnesses and a flashing light option before turning it off again.
Battery life – How long does this Bluetti power station last between charges?
Like other portable power stations that are capable of powering more than one device at a time (in this case, up to 9 devices), how long the lithium battery in the EB3A lasts before needing a recharge is going to depend on what you’re using it for, and the mix of gadgets you have being powered or charged during that time.
Unlike larger portable power stations (which can power more powerful devices, for longer, between charges), the best use cases for this compact, lightweight model from Bluetti are going to be when you either need to charge smaller devices, or you don’t need a power source for more than a few hours between being able to recharge it.
Due to its handy size and weight, it’s a great option to take in the car with you on road trips, camping, to the park, on a boat or simply out in your backyard, to power or charge smaller items.
This can include outdoor lights, portable speakers, charging your phone and laptop, or even powering an electric cooler / portable refrigerator for a few hours.
The wireless charging pad on top is a great place to rest your phone to top up its battery.
I’ve used this power station often to charge up my Macbook Pro laptop, which I typically do when it’s reached 10% and I want to recharge it back up to 100%.
Depending on whether or not I’m using the laptop at the time (or if I have it in standby mode with the screen closed), it takes between 40-50% of the Bluetti’s charge to get my laptop to full.
This suggests I could do 2x laptop charges on one Bluetti charge, which is less than the stated examples given on their website (4x laptop charges) – but then the Macbook Pro is quite a powerful laptop compared to other models and brands.
However, this still means I can use it to work outside or away from home without mains power, all day, and charge my phone up a bit using the wireless pad on top – both of which would be typical use for a small power station like this.
I have also noticed that the percentage full indicator is not always reflective of how much battery is left in the EB3A until it gets empty. Sometimes it will move down slower than expected, only to jump further down, making the readings occasionally unreliable. This tends to happen once the battery gets below 25%.
How many devices can the Bluetti power at once?
There are 9 outlets on this power station, including the wireless charging pad on the top, so depending on the mix of power sources you need, in theory, you can have 9 things plugged into it at the same time.
That being said, when I use these power stations in testing, I rarely have more than 3-4 gadgets connected to them, mainly because I have a less frequent need to use the 12v DC outlets and mainly use the USB, USB-C, and 120v household-style outlets.
It’s worth noting that you can charge the Bluetti power station while also using it to discharge power to your devices.
How to recharge the EB3A portable power station
There are three main ways to charge the Bluetti EB3A:
- 12v DC (car charger)
- AC household outlet
- Solar panels (max 200w)
Compatible portable solar panels are available from Bluetti and you can also buy one bundled with the power station when you order it.
Whichever way you choose to charge it, it’s going to take between around 1.5-3 hours to charge it from empty to full – although possibly longer if you’re just using solar and don’t have optimal conditions.
With AC charging from a household outlet you can charge from empty to 80% in around 30 minutes. This is the simplest way to charge this unit, especially as it’s so quick.
Bluetti’s website states that it takes around 1.5 hours to get from empty to fully charged, which I have confirmed based on charging my power station at home from the wall.
DC charging, however, is convenient for road trips as you can just plug it into your vehicle’s cigarette-lighter 12v outlet to charge it up as you drive, and it should take around 2.5-3.5 hours to charge fully from empty, depending on your vehicle and the outlet’s output.
It’s also worth noting that you can also use AC and solar charging simultaneously to charge it (up to 430w) even quicker – but of course, you have to be somewhere where you have access to position your solar panel appropriately, and still be able to connect the unit to an outlet.
Cost and where to buy
You can buy the Bluetti EB3A power station directly from Bluetti on their website, where there’s currently a $60 off deal that brings the price down from $299 to $239 – making it a great value option if you’re looking for a small portable power station for everyday use.
It’s also good to know that it comes with a 2-year warranty and free shipping.
The power station is also available to buy on Amazon:
If you need one, here’s the link to buy the Bluetti car charging cable (currently <$10) on Bluetti’s website.