Spigen has been making smartphone accessories for what seems like an age now and they have really homed in on their overall product experience.
- Great Design
- Micro USB
Thanks to Spigen for sending out the Essential 1000mAh power bank for review. They have had no access to this review before it went live, and no editorial oversight has been provided.
The Essential 10000 which is what I will be referring to it through this review is a compact little power bank which comes in Spigen’s classic white and orange packaging. Inside the box, you get the power bank, a short micro USB cable which measures just 15cm and a user manual. That’s it.
The texture is the first thing you will notice about the product, there is a series of diagonal lines across the front and the back of the power bank which helps a lot with grip. I found with some previous power banks I had, the smooth texture meant that it would slip and slide especially if you are tackling the extremely humid weather as we have recently done in the UK.
Having that pattern also makes the product more interesting to look at and I know that staring at a power bank is probably not one of the most fascinating things to do but nobody minds a little bit of style, do they? Spigen has identified this as one of the main differences in this power bank and have given it the ControlSlip pattern name.
At the top of the power bank, you have the power button which is more of a wake button than a traditional on/off button. I love when brands use these since it means that if the USB ports don’t detect a device connected then it’ll automatically go into sleep mode. Right above that button, you have the 4 LED battery indicators. Each bar represents 25% of the battery so if you have 4 bars you have between 75%-100% of charge, 3 bars means 50%-75%, 2 bars means 25%-50% of the charge and then 1 bar is 5%-25% of charge. Lastly, when there is 0%-5% of the power left the led also flashes. When you drain the battery, the last bar will flash indicating that the power bank needs to be recharged.
The recharging is a couple hour job and I would probably just leave it overnight. There is no fast charging on the input however it does charge at a maximum of 2A which is good to see especially as most of my mains chargers do support 2A output.
At the top of the power bank, you have the 2 USB A ports which output 5V at 2.4A each according to the specifications. I, unfortunately, don’t have an amperage/voltage meter so I can’t test this officially however when I plugged in 2 smartphones capable of charging at that amperage, the charging speeds on both devices were consistent compared to when I had 1 device plugged in.
I liked the fact that even if you don’t press the power button, you can directly plug the USB A cable into the USB port and the Spigen Essential 10000 will automatically output power to your device. This is handy if you have a bag with an external USB port as you won’t have to reach into your bag every time to turn the power bank on. I know it’s a simple press of a button but simplifying this process is great.
The one gripe I have with this is the Micro USB cable. I know that it’s not an expensive power bank and there are plenty out there which do support USB Type C however its more about future-proofing the power bank and since most modern phones have Type C connectors it would allow you to carry a single cable to charge both your phone and the power bank. I know cost probably plays a big part in this. But I would much rather pay an extra £1 for the Type C connector.
The back of the power bank has the technical specifications of the power bank including the power input and output, the manufacturing and distributors details and the electrical regulation information.
The form factor is probably the best thing about this. I have seen some power banks of a similar capacity however they are much narrower but much thicker. This means they cause a weird bulge, especially in skinny jeans. Whereas the sleekness of this means it can easily sit alongside my phone in my jeans pocket. It is much smaller than my iPhone XS Max, more alike to the size of maybe an iPhone 5S. The power bank sits neatly inside the screen of my iPhone.
The charging speed is one thing I have specifically omitted from this review as its difficult to measure unless you are testing in the same conditions with your device activity being the main differentiating factor. If you are using your phone you will probably get a significantly slower charge than if the device was charging completely switched off. I would be able to only accurately say that you would get the same charging speed as a main plug which has a 2A output.
I probably got about just over 2 full charges out of the power bank when I wasn’t using my phone and I got 1.8 full charges whilst using it. This is still a pretty respectable amount since there is a loss of power when converting from the battery due to factors like heat and the cable quality.
Overall, I am incredibly happy with the performance and overall value provided by the Spigen Essential 10000 and I can safely say for the foreseeable future this will be my power bank of choice!