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Anker PowerPort 21W Review

A compact, lightweight panel with unmatched efficiency and charging capabilities
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Price:  $90 List | $69.99 at Amazon
Pros:  Efficient, powerful, great value for its size, lightweight
Cons:  Pocket too small to hold extra cords and accessories
Manufacturer:   Anker
By Jane Jackson ⋅ Senior Review Editor  ⋅  May 2, 2020
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79
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#2 of 12
  • Charging Speed - 30% 8
  • Charge Interruption Recovery - 20% 8
  • Multiple Device Charging Speed - 20% 9
  • Weight & Portability - 20% 7
  • Durability - 10% 7

Our Verdict

Touted as a high-performance machine, Anker's panels have often been among our winners, earning that spot mostly for their reliable, high-quality manufacturing. They have always produced a well-made, dependable product. The Anker Powerport is lightweight and offers high performance. This panel excels in most metrics, especially when it comes to charging multi-device charging capabilities.

Compare to Similar Products

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Anker 21 is back on the market. This spring, Anker presents the same panel that won our hearts years ago. The new panel was consistent with other Anker products, and we weren't disappointed.

Performance Comparison


The Anker  an efficient three-paneled solar charger  soaking up maximum rays in the Sierra sunshine.
The Anker, an efficient three-paneled solar charger, soaking up maximum rays in the Sierra sunshine.

Charge Interruption Recovery


In this category, the Anker 21W did fairly well. When left in the sun for thirty minutes, the panel charged our battery pack up to 10%. Then, after we shaded it and uncovered it some times, the panel reestablished a connection to the battery and resumed charging after about five minutes of attempting to do so. Most of the more significant models performed in this way, so our testing results were inconclusive as to which contender soared above all the rest regarding performance.

These ports are meant to help regulate output - helping the Anker deliver charge during an interruption.
These ports are meant to help regulate output - helping the Anker deliver charge during an interruption.

Charging Speed


The 21W from Anker came in a close second in our race to charge a 6,000 mAh external battery. It took just under four hours (three hours and 40 minutes to be exact) for the panel to charge the battery from completely dead to 100%. When plugged into the wall, these batteries took about two hours to charge fully, so this is very efficient.

Next to our EC winner  the BigBlue. The Anker came close but didn't win over the consistently powerful BigBlue.
Next to our EC winner, the BigBlue. The Anker came close but didn't win over the consistently powerful BigBlue.

In thirty minutes, the 21W from Anker charged a Pixel 3 from about 30%. This is impressive and on par with some of the larger capacity panels in this review.

Multiple Device Charging Speed


The 21W from Anker is a powerhouse when it comes to charging multiple devices. Like the BigBlue, the Anker was able to deliver some charge to two devices simultaneously, which is certainly impressive for a panel of its relatively small size. The Anker 21 charged our phone 4% when plugged in next to a battery pack, which is similar to panels of the same size, and earns the Anker a high score in this metric.

Durability


The Anker has delivered a durable, well-made product. The Anker 21 is made of industrial-strength PET polymer faced solar cells surrounded by durable polyester canvas. This construction makes the Anker panels durable and able to withstand the harsh conditions found in the outdoors. They also have a thirty day return policy if you have any issues and will give you a full refund. They have an 18-month warranty. The warranty is another benefit of buying from a reliable company, and Anker has proven time and time again that they create well-made, durable products.

These reinforced eyelets add durability.
These reinforced eyelets add durability.

Weight and Portability


The 21W is incredibly lightweight, especially given its capabilities. Ounce for ounce, the panel is miles above the other 20W panels and even outdoes some of the panels of smaller capacities.

The Anker is sleek - easy to throw in the bottom of a pack on a day out.
The Anker is sleek - easy to throw in the bottom of a pack on a day out.

For being a tri-fold panel with a large surface area of cells, the 21W is small and sleek. When folded, the width is about the size of a thin book or a magazine.

Value


The Anker 21 is fairly pricy, especially when you consider its overall capacity. Nowadays, you can find a panel with a much larger capacity for a similar or cheaper price, which reduces the value of this panel. On the other hand, it's well made and comes from a reliable company, which adds to its value.

The Anker is a top-notch panel.
The Anker is a top-notch panel.

Conclusion


The Anker 21 is well made, light, and compact. It can also carry its weight as a charging powerhouse. It's efficient when charging one or more devices, and can recover its charge even after being shaded for a few minutes. The panel also works decently well on overcast days, whereas some of the lower wattage panels could not keep a charge going when clouds were overhead. We are big fans of this long-time favorite, but the Anker 21 has finally come up against some fierce competition in recent years.

Jane Jackson