Is The Atem Power 200W The Perfect Mix Of Portable And Performance?
It can be hard to find a solar panel that is both portable and capable enough to keep your batteries charged, but the product we are reviewing today might be exactly what you’re looking for.
Atem Power is an Australian company that make outdoor gear like solar panels. It makes panels in different sizes and styles, where some are more portable than others.
The product we are testing and reviewing is the 200W portable solar panel blanket that can charge not only 12V and 24V batteries, but power stations as well.
Before we get into the review, let’s take a look at the specifications.
Atem Power 200W Solar Panel Blanket – Specifications & Features
The Atem Power 200W can charge both car/RV batteries and portable power stations. Not at the same time though.
The only output directly from the panel is one Anderson connector. It’s the largest type, which is very easy to quickly connect and disconnect.
What you connect to this Anderson connector depends on what you need to charge.
When you charge 12V batteries like on a trailer/RV camper, the included MPPT solar charge controller is used.
With power stations, you’re going to connect the panel directly to the input of your power station without the charge controller above, since they have built-in charge controllers.
The charge controller connects to a 12V or 24V battery with alligator clips, while the panel connects directly to a power station with DC adapters.
Atem Power includes five different DC connectors. The Anderson Power Pole, 8mm, 5525DC, 5521DC, and Aviation plug.
The 8mm and 5525DC are the most common inputs on portable solar generators, so it’s likely the panel is compatible with your specific model.
If you’re not sure whether it’s compatible, please leave a comment and let me know which power station you have and I’ll help you figure it out. It might require an adapter or two.
Solar Charge Controller
The solar charge controller is MPPT, and supports all popular battery types, even lithium.
It’s easy to connect to your batteries with the included alligator clips. Simply take the positive (red) alligator clamp and connect it to the positive terminal on your battery, then do the same with the negative.
If setup correctly, the charge controller will light up and start charging the battery.
One of the best things about this panel is how portable it is. Since it folds together, it becomes 1/8 of its unfolded size.
I have never seen a 200W solar panel that becomes as portable as this one.
It becomes almost small enough to fit in a backpack, so it fits in a suitcase.
There are 8 loops along the sides, four on each side, that make it possible to hang the panel up.
Since it doesn’t have a built-in stand, you need to either hang the panel up or put it on the ground/a table.
The storage pouch on the front of the panel holds all of the accessories, and is a great place to keep them during travel.
Due to the folding design, the panels are covered while folded, so you don’t have to be careful when choosing a place to store the panel. It will survive in the trunk of a car or the bed of a truck.
Last but not least, a built-in handle make it easy to carry the panel when it’s folded.
In The Box
In addition to the solar panel, what you’re going to find in the box is the MPPT charge controller, an Anderson extension cable, alligator clip adapter, Anderson to Anderson connector cable, and the multifunctional DC adapter cable.
Size And Weight
The panel weighs 17 pounds and measures 19.88 x 14.57 x 4.33 inches when folded, 74.02 x 29.13 x 0.24 inches when unfolded.
It might sound heavy at first, but the handle makes it easy to carry.
What I Like
It can be used not only to charge your RV or car batteries, but also power stations.
The USB port on the charge controller will also charge or power whatever you have that doesn’t require more than 5W.
This makes it a great all-in-one solar panel for home owners, RV, and van travelers that have limited space and are looking for something small but powerful.
I also like that it uses large Anderson connectors instead of MC4 connectors, since it’s very easy and quick to connect/disconnect them.
Just remember to disconnect the connectors by holding the connectors themselves, so you don’t rip the wire out.
The panel performs great when connected to either our RV’s 12V battery, or one of our power stations.
My multimeter read 7.8 amps at 22.3 volts, which equals 174W. This was in January down in Texas, during a sunny afternoon.
How it will perform with your specific power station depend on the features and limitations of your model.
MPPT charge controller
An MPPT solar charge controller is more efficient than a PWM controller, and since it’s compatible with a lot of different battery types it’s most likely going to be able to charge your battery.
It has everything required to be a portable panel. Foldable, built-in handle, storage pouch, and durable (at least when folded).
The included cables
All of the included accessories are included for a reason, and you can tell that they’re designed with the user in mind. The easy-to-use Anderson connectors is just one example of that.
What I Dislike
No built-in stand
The fact that it doesn’t have a built-in stand makes it a bit tricky to use.
As somebody that has gotten used to setting up portable panels with built-in legs, it posed a bit of a challenge.
You either have to put it on a table, hang it up, lean it on something, or put it on the ground.
This makes it hard to keep the panel angled towards the sun during all hours of the day, which is essential during the winter months to generate as much electricity as possible.
Depending on the way you camp and travel, this might or might not be very easy to do.
We ended up putting it on the ground most of the time, but when the grass was wet we had to use a table.
It’s not waterproof enough to where you want to leave it out in rain or on wet grass.
Pretty much all portable panels like these that use fabric aren’t waterproof, but it’s still a con.
The Atem Power 200W solar panel is a reliable solar panel that performs great.
As long as you understand the downside of having a panel without a built-in stand and a waterproof rating, I think you’re going to like it.
I’m excited to see what other products Atem Power is going to release, because it did a great job on this one.
Please leave a comment down below if you have any questions.