Scalability is the new trend in the portable solar power market. This feature has only been with the mid-range and higher-capacity power stations for a while. Here, with the EcoFlow River power stations, we are lucky to have amazing modular capabilities with the entry-level and compact power stations, as well.
EcoFlow unveiled its series of River power stations in a Kickstarter campaign in early 2020 with attractive extra battery modules to help you expand the systems further.
Well, we currently have three River power stations; EcoFlow River, River Max, and River Pro. All the devices are basically the same in specs, but they mostly differ from each other in their modular features.
Here, we would like to have a detailed take on every model of the EcoFlow River series and comparisons of the models themselves and with their nearest competitors from other brands.
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EcoFlow River Power Stations
Though EcoFlow offers three models of River, they are actually two only; River and River Pro. River Max is, in fact, an expanded version of the original River. You get it when you attach it to its extra module.
River Pro shares almost the same specs as its other variants, except for its battery and modular feature. Yes, you get an external additional battery for River Pro, not a stackable one as in the case of River.
EcoFlow River Scalability
Scalability is certainly the new motto in the portable power market. Many new brands have recently come up with impressive power stations with modular profiles. When it comes to the new EcoFlow River power stations, both variants come with the capability for expansion.
The 288Wh entry-level River is expandable with a stackable extra battery pack of the same capacity to double its storage capacity. You can quickly attach the extra module to the bottom of River. It is when the top-end 768Wh River Pro has got a separate and external battery module of the same capacity.
EcoFlow River Portable Power Station
This entry-level variant of the River series is a 288Wh power station. The lovely thing is that you can expand it up to a 576Wh power station using the brand’s extra battery module. Like all the variants in the series, it equips a 600W inverter that can surge at 1200 watts.
However, thanks to the brand’s X-Boost technology, it can even support an appliance up to 1800 watts. But in regular use, it is highly recommended for appliances up to 1200 watts only for ideal results.
Including three 120V AC outlets, River incorporates 10 charging outlets overall. They include four different USB ports, dual DC sockets, and a regulated carport of 13.6V.
The USB ports of River are a pair of USB-A 2.4A/5V units, one USB-C 28W (max) Fast-Charge port, and one Type-C 100W PD outlet. The two DC barrel ports are of 13.6V DC, 3A (max) power.
For charging it, you have a 200W 10-25V DC 12A (max) input for solar charging and a 250-watt AC charging port with its X-Stream quick charging mode, which helps you fully charge it in below two hours.
Connected to a solar array of maximum capacity, you can charge it in under three hours, depending on the intensity of the sun in your location. By the way, the DC charging will take three hours.
- 288Wh Compact Solar Power Station.
- 600W Pure Sine Wave Inverter with 1200W Surge.
- X-Boost Mode for a Higher Surge of 1800W.
- Three 120V AC Outlets.
- 13.6V DC Carport and Two 13.6V Regular DC Ports.
- USB-C 100W (Max) Port, USB 3.0 Fast-Charge Port.
- 200W Solar Input With Advanced MPPT Controller.
- 250W AC Input with X-Stream for AC Charging.
EcoFlow River Vs Jackery Explorer 300
Jackery’s Explorer 300 is evidently the closest rival to EcoFlow River. Let us see how River is different from the little Jackery machine, which is basically a 293Wh power station. And it carries a 300W power inverter under the hood with a surge power of up to 500 watts and two AC outlets.
Clearly, Explorer 300 has a slight edge over River in battery capacity, but it has no option for an expansion. Also, River outplays it with a more reliable 600-watt inverter and a surge of 1200 watts. Plus, it boasts of a special inverter booster X-Boost mode for up to 1800 watts.
Coming to the charging options, besides the two AC sockets, Explorer integrates a Type-C 60W PD port, one USB-A Quick-Charge port, and a regular USB port apart from a 12V car charger. That means River enjoys a visible upper hand over the Jackery with more efficient USB and DC ports.
For charging from a solar source, Explorer has only an input port of 12V-30V 90W (max), which will take it for over five hours for a full charge with a 100W solar panel. Meanwhile, River, as said above, highlights a 200W input that will require only two hours for a full charge with the maximum solar output.
Finally, let us check out the size and weight. Fine, Explorer 300 has only a size of 9.1 x 5.2 x 7.8 in and a weight of 7.1 lbs. It is the only area where River fails to its Jackery competitor as it is slightly larger and bulkier at 11 lbs. Both the devices come with durable and easy carrying handles, however.
EcoFlow River Max Portable Power Station
River Max is exactly the same as the original River, except that it has got double storage capacity, thanks to the Extra Battery module. In other words, River Max is a specially branded EcoFlow River with its additional battery module in the package. You don’t need to buy an extra battery separately if you want more power.
Thus, you get a total power of 576Wh and two times faster AC charging speeds of 500 watts. All the other specs and the charging outlets are also the same. It packs up the same 600W AC inverter with a surge of 1200 watts. The X-Boost mode can enable it to pull out up to 1800 watts.
Of course, you can detach the extra battery when you want to make the power station rather portable for travels and adventures. And keep the extra battery in your vehicle or somewhere else as a backup.
In short, as said above, with River Max, you get an exclusively branded device apart from the one with an optional extra battery pack. It brings you a lovely discount of nearly $70 when you buy a River Max instead of the original River and Extra Module separately.
- 576Wh Solar Power Station.
- 600W Inverter with 1200W Surge Power.
- 1800W High-Surge with X-Boost Mode On.
- Three 120V AC Outlets.
- 13.6V DC Carport, and Dual DC Outlets.
- USB-C 100W Max Port, USB 3.0 Fast-Charge Port.
- 200W Solar Input with Advanced MPPT Controller.
- 500W AC Input with X-Stream Fast Charging.
EcoFlow River Max Vs Jackery Explorer 500
River Max is the right alternative to Jackery’s compact Explorer 500. Let us compare the specs of Jackery 500 against its EcoFlow rival here. Explorer 500 is, in fact, a 518Wh power station with a 500W pure sine wave inverter that can surge at 1000 watts.
River Max turns out to be a serious threat to the Jackery with its more reliable 576Wh battery, including the detachable extra module. Plus, it has got a 600W inverter with a surge of 1200W and an additional X-Boost power of up to 1800 watts.
Coming to the charging options, River Max has a clear dominance over its Jackery rival. It has got three AC outlets, while the Jackery has only a single AC socket. Moreover, it misses out on fast-charging USB ports like USB-C, USB 3.0, and more. Order your unit of Explorer 500 on the link below.
For solar charging, the Explorer has a 12V-30V (100W max) input, while River Max can support up to 200 watts of solar power. With a 100W solar panel, it will take over five hours for a full charge, while River gets charged up in below three hours.
When it comes to the size, they nearly have the same dimensions, but you can reduce the size of River Max by detaching its extra battery pack for better portability. Meanwhile, River Max is a little weightier at 17 lbs, while Explorer 500 is just 13.31 lbs.
But, one thing to remember is that this variant of Jackery is a bit old, which hit the stores long before the EcoFlow River series, and even its own younger variant, Explorer 300. That is why it lacks some fresh and modern features. Jackery may soon come up with an upgrade for it.
EcoFlow River Pro Portable Power Station
Finally, we have EcoFlow River Pro. Yes, it is the top-end variant of the series with a battery pack of 720Wh. You can expand it up to 1440Wh using the brand’s extra battery pack, which is an external module with the same design as the power station.
Except for the battery and a higher 660W AC charger, it has everything as the same as its lower siblings. It features the same 600W inverter with all its attributes like 1200W surge power and 1800W X-Boost power. The same three AC charging outlets are also there.
River Pro is the right choice for those who need even more power for long-haul adventures, and off-the-grid and emergency life. Increased storage capacity makes you run multiple devices for a pretty long time.
When it comes to the charging options, it has got everything its young variants have.
Thus, you can see a regulated carport, dual DC outlets, and multiple USB sockets, including USB-A, Type-C, and USB 3.0 Fast-Charge ports.
Meanwhile, it has got a faster 660-watt AC adapter for charging from your home wall socket. But the solar charging input is the same 200W one, so you can only juice it up from a solar array of up to 200 watts.
With a more powerful battery, is a little bit heavier and larger, however. Thus, it has a size of 11.4 x 7.1 x 9.3 in and a weight of 16.8 lbs, which makes it as handy and portable as its small variants.
- 720Wh Portable Power Station.
- 600W Inverter with 1200W Surge Power.
- Expandable Up to 1440Wh with Extra Module.
- Three 120V AC Outlets.
- 13.6V DC Carport, Dual DC Outlets.
- One USB-C 100W Max, One Fast-Charge Port.
- 660W AC Input with X-Stream Charging Mode.
We have already explored the specs and features of the entire EcoFlow River power stations. As you see, all the models share a lot of things in common, except for battery capacity and modular options.
Here, we would like to have a look at the special features of the River series. Obviously, all the models in the line feature X-Boost inverter technology, X-Stream AC charging mode, unique modular features, and more. We have detailed notes on each of the special features of the power stations below.
1. Innovative X-Boost Mode
An X-Boost output of 1800 watts is the most exciting thing with the River power stations. Basically, you get the EcoFlow power stations with 600W pure sine wave inverters and a surge power of 1200 watts.
EcoFlow X-Boost is indeed a game-changing technology.
You can quickly turn on the mode to make the machine run high-wattage appliances under 1800 watts. So, you can comfortably run appliances like power tools, hairdryers, vacuum cleaners, and more.
2. Fast X-Stream Technology
X-Stream is a patented technology for fast charging from an AC wall socket. All the EcoFlow solar power stations, including its famous mid-range model EcoFlow Delta, come with this feature.
It will enable your device to charge from zero to 80% in one hour and to the full in 1.6 hours. X-Stream has indeed been one of the much-excited special features of the entire EcoFlow power stations.
4. EcoFlow Mobile App
You have the new EcoFlow power stations with a full-fledged EcoFlow mobile app. It helps you remotely monitor all the basic details, including battery output, charging status, and other system information. You can connect your power stations to your phone over Wi-Fi connectivity.
5. Faster Solar Charging
All the EcoFlow River devices are compatible with any solar panels up to 200 watts. They feature a DC input of up to 200 watts maximum and highly efficient MPPT charge controllers. As per the brand, the patented solar charge controller makes the Rivers charge two times faster than the industry standards.
EcoFlow itself offers suitable solar charges for the devices. They are available in 60W, 110W, and 160W options. You can buy the required number of panels to reach the maximum input capacity and charge the devices in three to four hours fully under a bright sun.
That has been our take on the EcoFlow River power stations. We have covered all the variants of the River series in detail. They are indeed some of the best-seller models in the entry-level and compact segments of the power stations.
After their launches on Kickstarter, the brand renamed the products from their original names of River 600, River 600 Max, and River 600 Pro to River, River Max, and River Pro respectively.