Fluxmob Bolt Charger $59.99

Fluxmob Bolt Charger

Author
  • Design
  • Effeciency
  • Durability
  • Convenience
  • Value

Summary:
This is a portable charger born on Kickstarter that introducing a design that allows you to carry a portable battery in your wall adapter. There are a few like this I have seem and I may post some reviews of others but the concept is pretty simple. You start with a wall adapter and you add in some Lithiun cells. When ever the unit is plugged in you can use it as a normal wall adapter, but when you leave you take it with you and you can continue to plug into it to get a charge even if its not plugged into the wall. Its a really great concept.  That said, while i think Flux Mob really nailed the design with this version, i think they missed the boat on the performance or functionality. The unit itself seems fine, but based on the test results it seems they may have used rather poor lithium cells, and for the price i would be expecting much better. These units retail for $60, and in a recent review i just did of a higher end PowerX you are getting over 3 times the capacity at the same price not to mention the super charging speed the PowerX delivers, and the same can be said for numerous batteries. I’m just not sold that the extra cost is worth the perceived convenience of having the battery built into the wall adapter.

As with all of our tests lets get into the nitty gritty details and see why this battery may not be the perfect solution for all those mobile users out there.

Product Details
Battery Model: B3000A
Rated Capacity: 3,000 mAh
Output ports: 1 (1A)
Input Port: 1 (Standard 110V AC Plug)

Battery Features:

USB Port on the Bolt Stealth

USB Port on the Bolt Stealth

Ports: The battery has a single USB output ports rated at 1A which is common for a typical wall charger.  This means along with its small capacity means its really targeted at mobile phone users, and even then mostly the smaller phones and iPhones that are still using 1A chargers. Where newer HTC and Samsung phones are now using 1.5A or 2A chargers. On the input side, since this device in intending to replace your wall block/brick/adapter, you will find a convenient set of fold away 110V prongs that will go into any standard US outlet. This allows the battery to charge and a decent rate but not too much faster than a normal battery which is a bit disappointing. It seems to still be suing a 5v/1 or 2A charging circuit. That said since the overall size isn’t that long, and its intended to charge in the background under normal use, this is by no means a show stopper.

Indicator Lights on the Bolt Stealth

Indicator Lights on the Bolt Stealth

Indicator Lights: The battery does come with 4 nice blue indicator lights showing the % of battery charge, 1 LED per 25%  and a 5th slightly separated green LED indicating the device is plugged into the wall and charging the internal battery or if its charging a portable device. In many cases batteries will leave all the applicable indicators on, were this unit only leaves the green light on showing its active. the power savings is negligible but still a better way to go i feel.

Auto-on: This battery does not feature Auto-on charging when in portable battery mode. This is a feature common on many similar batteries where it automatically starts to charge the device as soon as the USB port is plugged into the battery. On this battery you have to press a button to start the charge, and for this one its more than a simple press. A single press will show the capacity status, but it take sa rather long press to actually start charging. However when the unit is plugged into the wall and activating like a wall adapter it does automatically charge whatever you plug in.

Pass-thru Charging: This is a nice feature that allows the battery itself to be charged while also delivering a charge out to another device that is connected. This is a key feature in the design of a device like this. This device does in fact have auto-on and pass-thru charging to ensure it acts as much like your normal power outlet as possible, and in this case it succeeds.

 

Trio of Bolt Models

Trio of Bolt Models

Device Finish:
The device comes in with a few different color options, the unit I worked with was the stealth or solid dark grey. It has a rubberized matte grey finish commonly found in portable batteries and is a bit soft to the touch vs a hard plastic. My wife used this battery for a couple weeks and after that time of traveling in her purse and such there were no long term impact marks or scratches so i would venture to say it seems relatively durable. These finished need to be handled with a ‘bit’ of care as this type of finish can mark up, but in this case its done pretty well so i wouldn’t put too many concerns on it here. I did not get a chance to see how the other colored units have their finishes so i will just speak to the stealth unit.

 

Testing details and efficiency.

Bolt Test Results

Bolt Test Results

Overall the device is a a nice piece of kit, but as one of its core functions is to serve as a portable battery, this is unfortunately one of its largest shortcomings. In a series of tests done on this battery it was found that it’s average output is only 54%, which puts it at the bottom of all of the batteries i have tested, efficiency wise.  In a series of 12 controlled tests the battery has an average output rating of 54% as noted. You can see in this table there wasn’t a lot of variation from one test to another so its a pretty solid expectation.

This means that you can, on average, expect to get about 1,614 mAh of actual juice from this 3,000 mAh battery. In its best test, 55%, you would get 1,635 mAh, and it’s lowest about 52% you can expect about 1,550 mAh.

As usual we will now put this into terms that many users can relate to based on the average rating of 54% or 1,614 mAh. This device is not intended for any tablet so i will bypass those.

Your Galaxy S3 will get about a 77% charge from 0%, and your Galaxy S4 will get about 62% charge from 0%.
If you are an iPhone user your iPhone 5 can expect to get about 1.2 charges, and for the newer iPhone 5s/5c you can expect a bit over 1 full charge.

 

Final Thoughts

For the price i don’t really see this being a good value to most people. There are much better performing batteries that cost less and/or give you power power to work with. If you are super tight on space and you really want the combination of the battery into your power adapter, this may still be a decent plug for you, but i would highly recommend waiting to get it on sale at least.

 

 Manufacturer Websitehttp://www.fluxmob.com/

 

Photo Gallery

  • Editor Rating

  • Rated 2 stars
$59.99
  • 40%

  • Fluxmob Bolt Charger
  • Reviewed by:
  • Published on:
  • Last modified: August 31, 2014
  • Design
    Editor: 80%
  • Effeciency
    Editor: 10%
  • Durability
    Editor: 50%
  • Convenience
    Editor: 70%

Description:

This is a portable charger born on Kickstarter that introducing a design that allows you to carry a portable battery in your wall adapter. While i think Flux Mob really nailed the design with this version, i think they missed the boat on the performance or functionality. I'm just not sold that the extra cost is worth the perceived convenience of having the battery built into the wall adapter.

  • CRod

    Don’t waste your money on this piece of junk. My Bolt literally fell apart a couple of days ago. When I pulled down the prongs to charge it into a wall, one prong broke and fell off, rendering it inoperable. The plastic holding it in place just snapped. It’s a piece of junk, in my opinion, made in some plant in China (the company doesn’t list where on its website).