A little over a month ago a product arrived at our office that we really wanted to get our hands on to explore the possibilities of playing with our Xbox away from home. This is Anker’s portable generator, the new 256Wh 521 Power Stationa portable generator from the famous electronics brand specializing in portable batteries.
After a month testing the power station in different conditions and for different uses, we bring you the Anker 521 Power Station reviewa portable outdoor generator that, although it has not managed to exceed all the demands that we have asked of it (we recognize that we have been very demanding) has more than fulfilled its mission and has given us a very interesting experience that we are going to tell you about.
Anker 521 Power Station – Design
If you are used to seeing this type of portable stations, you will know that most of them suffer from two major problems: size and weight. These tend to be very large to house large batteries with which to provide us with a good autonomy of use, which also leads to a greater weight, something that sometimes generates a significant handicap depending on the place where we are using it.
The Anker 521 has a very careful and very sober design. It has a size of 21cm x 21cm, which already gives us an idea that Anker has made an effort to make the product as compact as possible, also taking care of its weight, which is less than 4kg and really surprises for good, because for our side we expected some more extra weight.
As we say, it has a very simple design but at the same time functional. With a black plastic finish and a large central LED screen that stands out for being very simple but really useful, since it clearly shows us all the necessary information about the remaining battery charge or provided to connected devices.
On the front it also has both the “lighter” type connection such as the 220v connection and 3 USB sockets (two USB-A and one USB-C), as well as a LED strip that offers a very warm yellow light to illuminate the room, and can even serve as an SOS signal if we leave it pressed for a few seconds.
Anker ensures that the 521 is designed to be resistant to all kinds of impacts and falls, and although we have not tried to hit it, it does give us the feeling of significant robustness, giving us the feeling that it will not break or mark with any tap. if we use it away from home. On the other hand, on the sides it has a couple of ventilation openings that are easy prey for dust and water, which although it is not something that really worries us, we do think that it could have been a little more protected.
Anker 521 Power Station – Performance
Let’s go to the important thing, how does the Anker 521 Power Station perform? The short answer is well, really well. It has met practically all the expectations we had of it, or rather almost all.
In general terms, during all these days of use, we have tested various scenarios, starting with a “real” use, which is to plug in a laptop, a mobile phone or a tablet and gradually escalating to require super intense use, trying to plug in two sources of enough consumption directly to the station.
When using the Anker 521 as a mobile device charging source, the station’s performance has been outstanding. So much charging a mobile and a tablet at the same time as charging a mobile and using a laptop to play the performance has been perfect, without cuts and with a constant and abundant charge level. Suffering at most in a few moments when the laptop fan would start up and force the internal fan of the charging station to activate, which is really silent and lasting on for a few minutes.
However, as we told you at the beginning of this text, our main interest was to find out if it would be possible to play our Xbox Series S away from home, in a place without a 220v power outlet such as a campsite, a van/ motorhome or in a cabin lost in the bush, since many people have bought the little sister of the Xbox Series X to take it on vacation. We knew it was complicated, since a single station would have to power the TV and the console at the same time, which already makes it practically unfeasible, but we still wanted to try it.
Unfortunately the Anker 521 could not support both devices connected at the same time, even plugging the monitor into another power source the console was too “heavy” for it, giving us a couple of safety outages for cutting the power.
Something logical actually, since the power of the consoles is higher than what any power station on the market can offer us, since its use is different.
So as a summary we can say that the Anker 521 more than fulfills its mission, which is to be an autonomous charging station for mobile phones, tablets, computers, routers, etc.… In very few situations it will give you disconnection problems due to having connected some high consumption external source.
Last updated on 2022-06-19. Prices and availability may differ from those published. SomosXbox may receive a commission from your purchases. More information.
The perfect complement to xCloud
As we told you at the beginning of our review, the idea was to use the Anker 521 as an ideal travel accessory for our Xbox Series S. Unfortunately, the result has not been as expected, but surprisingly it has been the perfect ally of xCloud as a source of power for an Android portable console with which we have enjoyed Xbox Game Pass through the xCloud service.
As we told you in our guide to play xCloud on an Anbernic console, xCloud is the ideal instrument to enjoy our catalog of games on vacation. You only need to use the power station to charge the console after use and use the mobile to share data and play through xCloud. If you have a minimally decent 4G connection, the game is smooth and without interruptions and has allowed us to play perfectly.