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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
on January 31, 2012
UPDATE:
I wanted to know what actually happen when I have only one or two charge lights on (not blinking); is it charging in this case? So today I rigged up some
plug and I connected a power analyzer between the storage battery and the pannel. I placed the solar pannel against the window so I don't have direct sun light.
in this set up, I got two non-blinking charge lights and the power analyzer reported a current of 0.0 to 0.03 Amp entering the storage battery (most of the time,
there is no current at all). So this means that when the charging lights are not blinking even if they are on, there is not much charging going on.

On the other in direct sun light, it is different. In this case, the lights are blinking and I can get something like 0.3 to 0.5 Amp.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------PREVIOUS UPDATE---------------------------------------------------------------------
I always have the storage battery (one that came with the backpack) plugged into the pannel. I found that even when I am not using the battery to charge anything,
it will drain quickly when it is not being charged in the sun light. For example after being out of the sunlight for 12 hours, I lost one charge light. It went
from 4 charge lights to 3. I do not like the almost-to-nothing documentation that came with this product. It never explain any of this. Why is the battery
drain too quickly when I am not using it?

------------------------------------------------------PREVIOUS UPDATE:----------------------------------------------------------------------------
I finaly get enough summer sun light to test this backpack charging ability. This is what I found. The storage battery's charging lights will only be blinking
sequentialy (indicating that the battery is being charged) when in direct sun light. When not in direct sun light (like near a window), the charging lights are not blinking, but one or sometime two charging lights will be on. What
does this means in this case? Is the battery being charged in this case? I really do not know (the documentation is not clear on this). I assume
that the battery is being charged at low capacity (at least I hope that is the case) and I also assume that
the number of lights that are on indicate the charging capacity.
Also even in direct sun light, the solar panel's output charging current is not as high as the current drawn by the cell phone so when I am charging my Nokia cell
phone while walking or riding my bike in direct sun light, the storage battery will be drain. This means that my cell may not be completely charged and the
storage battery may be completely drained. This is especially true if the storage battery is not fully charged at the start of a charging session. This is disapointing because what is the point if I have to fully charged the storage battery at home before begining a trip. I would like to be able to charge my cell and still have enough excess current to charge the storage battery as well. The longer I use this backpack, the more I am disapointed with its performance.

------------------------------------------PREVIOUS UPDATE----------------------------------------
Well I have been using this backpack for 4 months now and it is ripped in a dozen places. I have had it repaired three time
now. I am not happy! Please do not buy this product. I am lucky I am traveling outside the US where there are many shops
that will repaire my backpack. In the US where there is no such repair shops, this backpack would have been completely useless and I would
have thrown it away after a few months of use. I do not recomend buying this backpack.

------------------------------------PREVIOUS UPDATE---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Due to the winter I have not be able to test the solar charging feature. But the backpack fabric quality is terrible!
When I ordered this backpack, I picked the charcoal pennel. But I got an email from the seller telling me that they "accidentally"
shipped the silver pennel. They wanted to know if that is OK or I can wait two extra days and they will ship me the charcoal pennel.
I thought it's not a big deal so I say OK, I'll take the silver one.

Well when I got the backpack, it had a small wear near the pennel zipper that made it hard to zip an unzip the pennel pocket. I was not
happy but I did not want to deal with returning and reshipping so I let it go. I know, I can not say for sure that they intentionaly sent me
faulty backpack but I am saying I did get a weird feeling in this case. If my subspicion is correct, I think it is extremely unprofessional of
them.

I had not used the backpack until a month ago when I went on a 200km biking trip. On this trip the backpack fabric torned (ripped) in three places.
All near the front pocket. It was not the threading that got ripped. It was the fabric near the threading area the got ripped) Fortunately, I was traveling in an Asian city where they can repair backpack. Thus I had it repaired and it seems fine.
but I have to be very carefull to not load the backpack too much again.

I owned two other non-solar backpacks and I regularly overloaded ( to a much higher degree than I loaded the solar backpack) them for a year now and it never ripped.

It is winter time so I have not fully test the solar charging feature but where I was biking, there considerable sun light and my cell phone
almost completely drain the battery in the backpack. Thus at this point I don't have much confident in the solar charging feature but I will
wait until summer time to test in full direct sunlight and I will give an update.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on December 15, 2012
Pro: It has adapters for almost everything! nice sturdy panels, plenty pockets and lots of space.
Works awesomely under the scorching Panamanian sun, finally getting something back out of all that sweating.
This backpack is light, carrying the battery and all of the extras it has.
You can separate the panels from the bag and put the panels where they can get more sunlight.

Cons: used the bag two times and it already ripped, i took it out just to walk around the city doing errands nothing too extreme and then I realized the second pocket from the panels back, just where the zipper starts, the stitches got loose and now I have like an Inch wide opening between the pocket and the zipper.
My phone(Samsung Galaxy S2) doesn't fit in the phone pocket on the shoulder strap.

TL;DR: Nice features, sturdy panels, lightweight, charges pretty fast under direct sunlight conditions, backpack could be better stitched. I will definitely go with a 2.0 version if it ever comes out.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on November 30, 2010
Very happy with my purchase! Great quality pack, excellent construction and the solar panels and battery are top quality. my only complaint is it needs more internal space a 15" macbook in neoprene skin only just fits into the rear laptop compartment, and I regularly carry 2 plus other items.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on December 29, 2012
have to say lost faith in solar backpacks after getting this didnt even work once waste of money didnt even get to return it because couldnt get ahold of company
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on April 8, 2015
Great bag. Can fit a big 17" laptop. Fits comfortably with a sternum strap. Makes a big difference when wearing it for a prolonged time. This version is actually phased out and I got it on clearance direct from Voltaic. The solar part can be removed so you can move it to face the sun. Does not come with the same amount of adapter the older version came with. Comes with micro USB adapter and that's about it.
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on December 12, 2014
I bought this for my son on his 34th birthday. He took it camping that week and loved it. A few weeks later he took it to Austin Texas ACL festival and was almost mobbed by curious people. This product is very trendy and every bit the quality advertised! Well worth every penny of the price.
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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on July 10, 2011
An excellent backpack with attached solar panel. They really have thought of everything including being able to zip off the solar panel and just use separately.
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