A goal of nothing – zip, zilch…zero. Quite ambitious, don’t you think? That is mantra over at GoalZero – getting the world off the grid and relying on absolutely no fossil fuels or infrastructure for electrical sustainability. Recently I got to test a small part of their mission in the form of the Venture 30 Recharger complete with Nomad 7 solar panel.
Venture 30 is the battery pack at the heart of this system and is designed for the outdoor lifestyle. It is rugged and weather-resistant and even features a built-in flashlight function. While it can be recharged via USB or micro USB outlets it does not come with a “tether” for a wall outlet and as I mentioned, ours came with the Nomad 7 solar panel pack that is itself lightweight, portable, and weather-resistant.
The Nomad 7 solar panels produce 12V DC power with a solar capacity of 7W. It can be connected directly to rechargeable devices such as smartphone, GPS unit, camera, LED lantern, etc. It is the perfect adventure companion for the Venture 30 recharger and is available as a kit such as the one that arrived for us to test. The Nomad 7 is the smallest and lightest of the solar panels available from GoalZero and it will recharge the Venture 30 pack fully in 8-16 hours of direct sunlight. It features several outlet types for your various devices (including 5V USB plug) and more than one outlet can be used at a time.
The Nomad 7 features a bi-fold design with a solar panel on each half when opened. It folds shut and is held in place with a small magnet in a fold-over flap. On the outside is a zippered mesh pocket where the output power cables are and this pocket can also hold other various cables you may need along with a couple of supplied small carabiner clips that are supplied.
Rugged barely begins to describe the Venture 30 battery pack design. It is a polycarbonate shell wrapped in a butyl rubber around all corners for optimum drop survival and it can even be submerged according to the manufacturer. It features high-speed 5V/4.8A across dual ports and the device has smart charging technology to recharge your device at the optimum rate as required by that device. It comes with a USB/micro USB cable attached around it that can be used for charging or recharging.
Pricing for the Venture 30 recharger is $99.99 and when mated to the $79.99Nomad 7, the kit will run you $179.98. GoalZero products are available at REI or on the company website at www.GoalZero.com.
The GoalZero products are built very well and feature attractive designs that make sense. A kit such as the Venture 30 paired with the Nomad 7 solar panels should be on your packing list when planning your next outdoor adventure. Regardless of where the road or path takes you, these GoalZero products are perfect for your next great adventure or for packing away at home for the next time the “grid” fails you.
Source: Manufacturer supplied review sample.
What I Like: Rugged design; ease of use; sustainable power
What Needs Improvement: Nothing at this time