The Solar Camping Lantern from Suaoki is an amazing lantern that will not only light your way in the dark but will also charge your cell phone or mp3 player during a power outage. The compact size of the lantern makes it an easy choice for inclusion in your bug-out bag or emergency kit.
When the Suaoki lantern arrived in the mail, the tiny box was a bit of a surprise. The product ships in its compressed form which looks like a small hockey puck about 3 inches across and slightly less than 2 inches high. It comes with a microUSB cable and a User Manual in the box.
- Suaoki Solar Lantern
- Micro USB Cable
- User Manual
The Solar panel is on the top of the lantern along with a fold-down handle which is convenient for holding the lantern as you walk, hanging it from a tent pole or a shoulder strap for hands-free use. My first impression when I saw the lantern was that it would be perfect to light the way of small Trick-or-Treaters on Halloween so that they can see and be seen by oncoming traffic. The small lightweight lanterns are easy for small hands to grasp but you could easily pin the lantern to some part of their costume so they won’t drop it.
When in the folded position, the lantern produces a concentrated light just like a flashlight through the lens on the bottom. It pulls opens a bit like an accordion for a wider swathe of light. Expand it to its full lantern size (5-6 inches tall) for a softer light that will brighten the larger area of your tent, your child’s tree house or fort, and provide plenty of light for reading if the power goes out. Press the power button near the top of the lantern to select from 3 light options of Low brightness, High brightness, or the emergency flasher. A charging indicator light is to the right of the power button. This light is red when charging and green when fully charged. A rubber hatch cover conceals the microUSB and standard USB ports to protect them from rain.
The lantern may be charged using the included microUSB cable or set it in a sunny window and use the Solar charger. The Solar charger does work even when the Sun is not very bright or there are intermittent clouds. It just takes longer to get a good charge. I was never able to fully charge to the green charge light when using the Solar charger over a 2 day period. It still charged enough for 3 good hours of light from the Solar charging which would be welcome on a camping trip or during an emergency power outage. That green light does come on when charging on USB. A full charge on the USB can take between 4 to 6 hours.
All my testing was done using the USB charger for the most consistent power levels. With a fully charged battery the lantern provided an average of 12 hours of light on Low and an equally amazing 8.5 hours on High brightness. I did not time the flasher and hope to never need an emergency flasher for any extended period of time but I am confident that this flasher is up to the task. The lantern also offers a standard USB port for charging your cell phone when other power options are unavailable. The 800 mAh power of the lantern isn’t enough to fully charge a typical smartphone but it will provide need charging power when camping or emergency situations. Keep in mind that the 800 mAh of power is for both lighting the lantern and emergency charging.
Suaoki has incorporated a Smart Protection chip in the lanterns circuitry to protect your lantern from overcharging, over-discharging and over-circuit events. This versatile little lantern is rechargeable, lightweight, and water resistant. It’s perfect for a variety of different activities both indoors and out. Use it for your Trick-or-Treaters on Halloween, at the bus stop before the Sun comes up or late at night, camping, traveling, your cabin in the woods, on your fishing trip, and anywhere else that you need a rechargeable Green source of light and power.
The Suaoki Solar Camping Lantern is affordably price at only $19.99 on Amazon and is eligible for free shipping with Amazon Prime. The lantern is available in either black with orange trim or black with green trim. Be sure to scroll down the page and check out the Special Offers and Product Promotions section for discounts on purchases of multiple lanterns. This might be a good place to begin your holiday shopping with a thoughtful and very useful gift for those you care about. I received the Suaoki lantern in the Black and Orange for my honest evaluation which I have provided above.