Overlanders and off-roaders alike use a plethora of gizmos, gadgets, and gear when venturing into the unknown. Along with a beefy vehicle-battery setup and a fancy cable management system to keep it all organized, having portable power as a secondary source of go-go juice is a must.
Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core
The Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core is a new-to-market portable power station. Marketed by Goal Zero, a household name for power banks and solar panels, the Yeti 1000 Core battery bank charges up a wide variety of products, including laptops and tablets, smartphones, cameras, portable fridges, and more.
Armed with a 1200-watt inverter, the Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core offers 1000-watt hours and an abundance of charge port options (seven to be exact). From two fast-charging 60W USB-C and USB-A ports to a regulated 12V and two 120V AC ports, the Yeti 1000 Core can have multiple items plugged in it at a time while displaying current usages on its digital display.
There are three ways to charge the Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core:
- The wall: The supplied 120W power cord (while plugged into the 8mm charging port) can recharge the Yeti in approximately nine hours. However, an available 230W power supply (sold separately) drops the unit’s recharge time to 4.5 to five hours.
- The car: The Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core can also be charged by any vehicle, using an optional Goal Zero Yeti Lithium 12V Car Charging Cable (while plugged into a cigarette lighter port). Charge time: nine hours.
- The sun: This unit can be recharged from the sun by connecting compatible solar panels (like the Nomad 200 Solar Panel). As with any solar panel, charge times will vary based on current weather conditions and sun exposure. Based on the 200-watt Nomad 200 unit, Goal Zero states the Yeti 1000 Core can be fully charged from six to 12 hours.
Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core Features
Weighing in at 31.68 pounds, the Yeti 1000 Core features hefty carrying handles and a modular, boxy design (it’s 9.86 x 15.25 x 10.23 inches in size). Although the Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core doesn’t have an on/off button, the buttons it does incorporate are flush against the front and power each section. No button-breaking opportunities are found here. A top-mounted lid secretly conceals its wall power cord and magnetizes shut when closed.
The Yeti 1000 Core powerhouse solution not only boasts a bunch of charge ports, but it’s also virtually silent compared to other high-powered battery banks we’ve tested. There isn’t a huge hum or whirring fan noise if it’s running in close proximity, perfect for enjoying Mother Nature’s surroundings versus the technology or loud gasoline-guzzling generators residing within it.
With a lithium-ion battery at its heart, we tested a Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core review sample to see if it holds up to our off-grid lifestyle. Is it an ideal go-to piece of kit when adventuring in remote surroundings? How about at home when the power goes out? Read on to understand our discoveries.
The Laptop Lowdown
Goal Zero states the Yeti 1000 Core can keep a full-size 11 Wh fridge running for 18 hours. It also says it can power a 100-watt 42” LED TV for 10 hours and microwave for one hour. This unit does power a wide variety of items. Have no fear when the power goes out, you’ll have various essentials covered with the Yeti 1000 Core unit.
However, how long can it continually charge our workhorse laptop? Keen on keeping a record, our newish Lenovo T14 laptop (with supplied 65-watt power cord) runs all day long as articles are written, bills are paid, and social media is attended to. Even though Goal Zero claims the Yeti 1000 Core can power a 50-watt laptop for 20 hours, how would it fare with our watt-hungry Lenovo? We plugged it in, pushed the AC flush-mounted button, and charged away.
With an average reading of .7 amps out (with spikes up to 1.7 amps), the Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core surpassed our expectations, lasting a surprising 22.75 hours. Although the percentage reader on the screen seemed stable, the “hours left to empty” numerics fluttered about regularly (varying lasting times from 26 to 28 hours or 13.9 to 8.7 hours within a few minutes of its readings). It was easier to concentrate on % left vs. how much time it read to empty. The high-gloss digital screen is crisp but bright. We’d like to see an option to lessen screen brightness when sleeping next to it while camping or for night-time usage.
Upon empty, the Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core battery bank simply shuts off. No beeps or warning lights. It just dies. This is something to note if you’re near zero capacity and charging a critically important item.
Other Points to Consider
The Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core is designed in a modular way, making it pretty easy to pack. However, its lime green top-mounted handles protrude slightly above and just past the main battery’s silhouette. It can be tricky to stack some flat-based items on top of it. Additionally, venting allowances are showcased on both sides of the unit. Tip: It’s important to keep air circulating near both vents as to not overheat the unit.
Although the Yeti 1000 Core conceals its wall charger in an upper storage area with a matte-finished lid, it takes a bit of finagling to get the lid fully shut and staying shut. We’d prefer to see a locking lid or one that boasts a heavy-duty latch for closure. In addition, a patterned or textured lid would help prevent its expansive surface area from scratches.
To Sum It Up
This unit is meant to be used and not be a model in a fashion show. Each scratch and wear mark signifies memories of wanderlust, working, or wishing for the power to kick back on during a storm. The Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core is a solid performer and should be considered a quality bit of kit when on the trail or as a failsafe should emergency power be needed. Although it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles like more expensive products have, the Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Core’s features and long-lasting demeanor can give power-hungry people the answer they may be looking for. Price: $999.95
[Images: Mercedes Lilienthal]
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