PowerTraveller MiniGorillaHot on the heels of reviewing the MotorMonkey, PowerTraveller has kindly provided a MiniGorilla unit for DigitalReviews Network. 


Designed specifically to work with the latest netbooks, the PowerTraveller MiniGorilla will charge e-readers, camcorders, mobile phones and many more electronic products that require a 19v DC input or less.





First Impressions
The MiniGorilla comes shipped as a standard grey rubberised unit with two black ribbed sides.  Funny enough it bears some resemblance to a real gorilla, at least it reminds me of their large black hands and grey fur.  Adorning the face is a small LCD screen and a solitary button.  On the left side of the unit is the DC "in" recharging port, and on the right side is the DC "out" and USB ports.

Charger adaptorsThere is a beautiful simplicity to the MiniGorilla.  The solitary button turns the unit on (and off).  When on the LCD lights up the level of charge remaining is clearly shown by the 6 vertical bars in the right side of the screen.  When the MiniGorilla is running out of power the battery symbol on the left of the screen flashes to indicate that recharging is required.

In Action
There has never been a greater baptism of fire for gadget review in my time with DigitalReviews.  After a long day at work and my laptop battery is as good as dead, I have settled in to write this review whilst charging my laptop when the power line outside my house came down.  Out of habit it is too early for me to retire to bed so by torch light I find the L61D adapter and hook up the MiniGorilla to my Dell laptop.

Lucky for me the MiniGorilla came fully charged although I did have to figure out the voltage requirements by torch light.  By pressing the button I cycle through the DC output until I got to 19 V and happily type away for the next 30 odd minutes and framing the various parts of this review together.

When I have had enough of sitting in the dark, I changed the voltage setting and connected the MiniGorilla to recharge my iPhone overnight so that it can act as my alarm clock.

Other Features
monkeynutsThe MiniGorilla has a range of voltage settings including 8.4V, 9.5V, 10.5V, 12V and 19V.  The 5V USB output is designed to recharge small portable devices.  Further it comes with a kit bag full of safety features including current and voltage limitation protections, and short circuit protection.

The battery incorporates the latest High Density Lithium Polymer (HDLP) battery technology to achieve the most power efficiency to size and weight.  Via mains adaptor is can be fully recharged in 5.5 hours.  Optionally with the SolarGorilla (not supplied) it can be recharged within 6-9 hours.

There are some limitations to the MiniGorilla.  For Mac users, the mag port cable will provide power to your MacBook but not recharge it.  In Australia you can request a cable to be supplied with your MiniGorilla that will recharge your MacBook but it is currently not Apple certified.

Secondly for Dell laptops it is strictly power only as well.

Input: AC 140~240V, 50~60Hz
Output: USB (5V)
Output: 8.4V, 9.5V, 10.5v, 12V, 19V, 9000mAh
Average netbook power, 4,800mAh – 4hrs battery plus 6hrs from minigorilla (total 10hrs)
Compatible with new range of Sony VAIO netbooks
Dimensions: 149 x 82 x 15 mm
Weight: 265 grams

Kit includes 11 x laptop tips, 9 x mobile and handheld device tips.
1 x MiniGorilla
1 x Neoprene carry case
1 x Universal charger with adapters compatible with 150 countries
1 x Retractable USB cable

Laptop tips:
1 x L01D for ASUS/Compaq/HP
1 x L51D for ASUS/Winbook
1 x L52D for ASUS/Compaq/HP
1 x L53D for ASUS/Compaq/HP/Gateway/IBM/Lenovo/Fujitsu/NEC/Olivetti/Toshiba
1 x L54D for Fujitsu/Panasonic/Samsung/Sony
1 x L55D for Toshiba
1 x L61D for Dell (power only)
1 x L72D for HP/LED monitor/Scanner
1 x L73D for Samsung/Sony
1 x L74D for HP/ GPS Navigator
1 x L75D for ASUS/Lenovo/BenQ

Out portsMobile and handheld device tips:
1 x Mini USB
1 x Micro USB
1 x Samsung G600
1 x LG Chocolate
1 x DC 2.0
1 x DC 4.0
1 x Sony-Ericsson K750i
1 x Motorola V66
1 x DC 3.5 (default tip)

There are very few gadgets that I review and have no cause for gripes.  The one consistent company that delivers products like this is PowerTraveller.  As per the MotorMonkey review posted earlier, I would have liked to have an iPhone monkeynut provided but as there are two different pin outs for the different editions of the iPhone this could be difficult to get right.

Neoprene sleeveConclusions
The latest addition to the primate family at PowerTraveller to be a winner for road warriors.  Weighing in at 265 grams and providing up to 2 extra hours of juice or up to 5 recharges of an iPod.  At 9000 mAh and bundled with a plethora of monkeynuts it makes for an extremely flexible portable power solution.

The MiniGorilla is available from here for AUD$249.99 or here for £99.95.  Worthy consideration of a Christmas present for the gadget centric person.