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As much as we envision living a hardcore Spartan lifestyle, the truth is most four-wheelers prefer to bring some creature comforts while off-roading.
The technophiles among us, especially, can’t resist bringing at least a few gadgets on the trail or to the campsite. But those items might be a waste of cargo space if there’s no way to plug them in after their batteries run out.
Enter the Brunton Impel. This power pack can charge almost any electronic device when you’re low on power and off the grid.
After charging the Impel at home, in your car, or with the Brunton Solaris solar-panel array (not included), you can use the portable power plant to boost a wide range of electronic gear. The Impel comes with a built-in USB port, a connecting cable, and six adapter tips, so you can power up everything from laptops and cameras to smartphones and handheld GPS units.
About the size a hardcover novel (7.75 by 6.75 by 1 inches), the 2-pound-10-ounce Impel is small enough to stow conveniently, but is still hefty enough that it isn’t fragile. Brunton has wrapped its rechargeable battery in a rubberized shell so it can withstand minor impacts and resist water. Only long-term testing will confirm its lasting durability, but so far it has proven to be made of top-quality materials.
As Brunton’s biggest portable power-storage unit, the Impel offers strong numbers in a small package. Its internal lithium-polymer battery has the capacity to store up to 145 watt hours.
Plus, this juice box is adjustable, so you can choose from 12, 16, or 19 volts of output, which are rated at 3,800 milliamps, 3,500 milliamps, and 3,200 milliamps, respectively. The USB current is rated at 600 milliamps with an output of 5 volts.
The unit has several smart features. Five LED bulbs indicate the power remaining. And it automatically shuts off when it’s finished completely charging a device.
The Impel is easy to use, convenient to carry, and thoroughly impressive. It doesn’t come cheap, though (online prices hover around three Benjamins), so you’re definitely paying for what you get. But what you get is top quality.