Zendure SuperBase V/5 solar battery : review / opinion
Published on: 23-10-2022 / Modified: 13-04-2023
With inflation soaring, energy cost has become a major concern for many and while this situation makes many of us unhappy, opportunities arise. I have solar panels since 2013 and I have been enjoying almost free electricity for almost ten years now.
During day time, I'm not using a lot of electricity and most of what my solar panels produce is sent back to the grid. In the evening, I need more electricity while I don't get power from the sun anymore which means that I have to get electricity from the grid. This mecanism kept my meter below 0 and it did not generate any additional charges. With recent new regulation I will have now to pay for the electricity I'm sending back to the grid and buy the electricity in the evening. I'll now be paying twice for something I was not paying for.
Every country has different regulation, energy prices are also very different but there is one thing that we all have in common, we need to find solutions to become almost or completely autonomous to avoid being plundered by inflation or changes in regulation. I expect the need for energy storage will massively grow in the coming months and years.
There are already many types of batteries available on the market to store solar energy and reduce the need of getting electricity from the grid and before talking about the Superbase V batteries, I'm going to take a little detour.
You probably think that solar batteries are too expensive, you might be surprised that there are do-it-yourself solutions even if you have no technical skills. I have found a good example of such a battery with the following video:
For around 600$ you have a capacity of 2.4 kwh, that would be roughly around 0.25$ per Watt. Nice! You could stack up this type of solution but it will require some of your time for the setup and maintenance.
Next to the do it yourself world, you have a whole bunch of ready to use battery products like for example the LG Chem lithium ion RESU 10 kWh that you can get for around 5200$. The advantage of this type of battery is that you don't have to worry about anything, you are covered with a warranty and you should be ok for 20 years. The price you pay is much higher than the do it yourself example and the cost per watt is also higher with around 0.5$ per Watt (You can use the full 10kwh).
Let's now have a look at the new battery from Zendure, the SuperBase V, where you can choose 2 battery capacities (4.6kw and 6.4kw) that can be stacked to reach up to 64kw. With the 4.6kw battery you have a cost per Watt around 0.56$ and with the 6.4kw battery it costs 0.61$ per Watt. Those batteries are clearly comparable to other models on the market like the one from LG I mentionned before. So why would should you buy those batteries instead of others?
If you want to buy a domestic battery, you should use the following criterias as a checklist that can be applied to any products of this kind.
1. Capacity: The amount of energy a battery can store, measured in kilowatt-hours (kWh).
2. Depth of discharge: The percentage of a battery's capacity that can be safely discharged before it is damaged.
3. Round-trip efficiency: The percentage of energy that can be retrieved from a battery compared to the energy put into it.
4. Power rating: The amount of power that a battery can deliver at a given moment, measured in kilowatts (kW).
5. Battery life: The number of cycles a battery can go through before its capacity deteriorates.
6. Temperature tolerance: The range of temperatures in which a battery can operate safely and efficiently.
7. Safety: The safety features of a battery, such as overcharge and over-discharge protection, short-circuit protection, and thermal management.
8. Brand and warranty: The reputation of the manufacturer and the length of the warranty offered.
9. Compatibility with existing equipment: The compatibility of the battery with existing equipment in terms of voltage and current.
10. Cost and Return on Investment (ROI): The cost of the battery and the expected return on investment (ROI) over time.
Zendure Superbase V price
The early bird price on Kickstarter is not available anymore but there is a promotion on the official site where you can get the Superbase battery for 3299$ instead of 4999$.
Don't miss you chance: Zendure Superbase / official site
Why this battery?
Semi-solid state vs Lithium-Ion
The Superbase V battery is a semi-solid state battery and with this type of battery you can store more power in the same space compared to the usual Lithium-Ion batteries. Semi-solid state batteries are also safer, there are no risk of fire or explosion. The battery from LG weighs 80kg just to give you an idea. I don't think this will be a game changer unless you decide to buy multiple batteries.
Semi-solid state batteries are a type of lithium-ion battery that uses a semi-solid electrolyte instead of a liquid electrolyte. The electrolyte, which is the material that allows ions to flow between the anode and cathode, is a mixture of a solid and a liquid. This hybrid structure offers a number of advantages over traditional liquid electrolyte batteries.
One of the main advantages of semi-solid state batteries is that they have a higher energy density than traditional liquid electrolyte batteries. This means that they can store more energy in a smaller space, which makes them more suitable for use in electric vehicles and other high-energy applications.
Semi-solid state batteries also have a higher conductivity and lower internal resistance than traditional batteries, which allows them to charge and discharge more quickly. They are also more stable and safer to use than traditional batteries because they have a lower risk of leaking or catching fire.
Another advantage is that they can be made with a variety of materials, including silicon, which can be more cost effective than traditional lithium-ion batteries. Additionally, the manufacturing process is less complex, which can be easier to scale up and mass produce.
However, Semi-solid state batteries are still in the research and development phase and not yet widely commercialized. The technology is still being developed and improved upon, so it is not yet clear if this technology will be able to compete with the traditional Lithium-ion batteries in terms of cost, performance, and safety.
SuperBase V batteries are built in a box that you can move around with wheels. With such a portable power storage solution, you could carry the batteries around when going on holiday but those units look quite heavy so I'm not sure carrying them around will be as easy as they say.
* SuperBase V can be charged up to 5150W and 6000W with a satellite battery. If you have a 5kw setup, it would take a bit more than an hour to charge.
* SuperBase is compatible with a wide range of solar panels from 12V to 150V
* You can charge SuperBase V at a charging station, the same as for your EV
* Superbase V is equipde with outputs for all markets (EU, UK, AU, JP and US)
* compatible with 120V and 240W, it can power any appliance in your house.
* fast switching in case of blackout, you will not see downtime
About the company
Zendure is a company that designs and manufactures portable power banks, chargers, and other mobile charging solutions. They are known for their durable and high-quality products that are designed to withstand rugged use and extreme temperatures. Some of their products include portable power banks, USB-C hubs, and wall chargers. They offer a range of products with different capacities, power outputs, and features to suit different needs.
Additionally, They offer customer service and support for their products. They have a reputation for reliable and efficient customer service.
The company was founded in 2013 and is based in the United States. They have been around for quite some time and have been reviewed positively by many customers and experts.
The campaign organizer is Tom Halflinger, this is a real person, you can find his details here: https://www.linkedin.com/in/tom-haflinger/
Zendure has at least 30 employees: https://www.linkedin.com/search/results/people/?currentCompany=%5B%223280993%22%5D&origin=COMPANY_PAGE_CANNED_SEARCH&sid=meH
The CEO is Bryan Liu, you can find his profile here: https://www.linkedin.com/in/bryanliu/
Their website has been around for some time and they have more than 100k visitors / month.
Zendure is not a new company, it has been selling batteries for a while and while there is always a risk with crowdfunding campaigns, the risk is probably lower than the average.
This review is really nice, the guy was lucky enough to be able to test a prototype and he is quite positive on the product.
What is so special about this Zendure battery?
- It's the world first battery that can power standard and high voltage appliances, it does that automatically.
- it can power up to 5000W power applicances
- it has a 6.4kwh capacity per unit and the use of semi solid-state leads to a smaller battery size
- it can be charged with a household plug, it can be charged in 120V (4 hours to fully charge) and 240V (2 hours to charge), this is really fast for this capacity
- it can be charge from a EV car (with a level 2 EV car charger)
- it can be charge with solar panels, there is a 3000W input control which means that it would take around 3 hours for charging if you have get the maximum sun power from your panels
- you can also charge if from you 12V car output, it's not very useful but it can be done
- the front panel has 2 USB C 100W chargers, 2 USB C 20w charger, standard USB A 5V 2.4A
- it has a very fast 30ms switching to cover power outages
It definitely has some unique features! If you compare prices (which you should), don't forget that this battery is portable, it has even powered wheels.
Who is this for?
I can think of a couple of use cases where this battery would make you happy:
- if you have to pay for your electricity in the evening and you have a EV vehicle
- you need power available outside your house
- you want to be safe for blackouts (more than just a couple of hours)
- you want to live off the grid
The reason to buy this product should not only be based on price but on those additional use cases that traditionnal domestic batteries can't fulfill.
The Kickstarter campaign is now closed, you can only buy the Zendure Superbase V on the official site:
Zendure Superbase V on Zendure.com