My tenth #USB   #TypeC  analysis is a bit new procedure to me: a Ravpower Turbo Series 20100mA external battery pack. [Model RP-PB043.]
tl;dr: Type-C DRP compliant, cables legal, conversion efficiency of 60%@3A (=12000mAh), but voltage sag means N6P charges erratically.

[PDF of Compliance Checklist for Ravpower RP-PB043]

This is my fourth review, second SUCCESS, in the new format: less data, more to the point. This battery pack appears legal. Hooray! However because its voltage output isn't flat the Nexus 6P (in particular) has a bad time. And an internal efficiency of 60% @ 3A means you only get 12000mAh of juice out of it.

Testing this thing was a bit of an ordeal since instead of just the port, I had to worry about the battery too. And it is triply complex because (a) this thing is always-on to some extent and won't ever shut off, so I couldn't use some of my tools to probe it safely  (b) I have to worry about voltage sag as the charger gets used up and (c) the total capacity of the battery pack. [This is in addition to making sure all the included cables are OK.] So my Analysis Checklist may need some rework for external battery pack applications.

* First off, let me explain why the rating I gave is about HALF what is written on the box, so people don't get up in arms. This is how much power was DELIVERED to my load tester. Not necessarily how much power the battery pack was carrying. There is an inherent loss during conversion.

Think of it this way: it's like trying to move gas from one truck to another, with a gasoline-powered pump. The pump is going to burn some of it up to do the work. (And even more will be lost putting it inside the other truck, but I'll gloss over that)

Basically at 3A, you will get around 12000mAh of useful output before the battery pack voltage drops to unusable levels. 60% efficiency is.... okay(-ish??) for a DC-DC circuit under heavy load. There's no way thermodynamically for it to be 100%. I lack enough comparison data [i.e. other battery packs of this size] to comment further.

* I selected a constant 3A drain rate (and no more/less) since that was my assumed use case: having one 3A Type-C device plugged in. Note, the higher the drain rate, the more inefficient the conversion will become due to heat, etc. So ideally, using an A-to-C converter and SLOWLY charging your phone at 1.5A will get more juice out of the pack!

I had to make up a rule so I picked one. Type-C port at max rate, and I'm sticking to it.

* Some neat things: the Type-C port on this is actually a Dual Role Port! You can charge from it, or charge your device from it. Check out the oscilloscope output! The CC line voltage is a 3.3v square wave!

However, this also means the thing NEVER TURNS OFF since it has to keep cycling the CC port. However, if a device is connected, but it doesn't draw current for 20 seconds, the Type-C port is "shut off" and the battery pack goes to sleep. You need to tap the button to wake it up again.

* One MAJOR  (and I mean major) issue is that the Nexus 6P has a terrible time charging off this. Perhaps because of the voltage sag (down to 4.45v @ 3A, when pack empty) my Ampere readings were all over the charts. My median reading actually ended up at 1000mA (at full battery pack), which is pretty bad for a 3A Type-C port. I'm going to need to do some more investigating as to the cause.

* Heat tends to be concentrated near the front part/button area. If you use this, I'd recommend keeping it elevated a little bit. Large Li-Po batteries scare me somewhat. (56Wh in kilojoules are about equivalent to a 50 grams of dynamite! With about as rapid an energy release. Now you know why these aren't allowed to be shipped via air.)

All in all, this is a very fancy piece of kit, Type-C in-and-out, comes with legal cables/adapter, has Qualcomm QC3.0 on the correct ports, and seems to output voltages within the Type-C spec. I have a good idea why the Nexus 6P is having such a tough time charging, but might be something I have to follow up on internally.

[Plus] Analyses Ravpower RP-PB043
7 Photos - View album
Shared publiclyView activity