Are you looking at buying a mid-range, scalable solar power station? You are lucky enough to have a lot of brands to go for. Goal Zero is certainly a major player in the North American market for over a decade. Though relatively a new brand, Lion Energy is another option. Here, we have our comparison of Lion Energy Vs Goal Zero by having a look at two of their impressive mid-range solar power stations.
Gone are the days of power stations with fixed battery packs. Today, we have a lot of brands, including Titan, with amazingly modular solar power stations. Simply, a modular device, as you know, guarantees increased flexibility and reliability. So, it can help you stay powered for a longer time in the wild or a long-standing emergency.
All the Goal Zero Yeti top-line products are expandable with supplementary battery packs. Of course, you need to buy additional and battery packs and linking cables to make use of the modular feature.
When it comes to Lion Energy, its Safari ME is a brilliant modular solar power station. So, here we would like to pit Safari ME against Goal Zero’s top-seller Yeti 1000 Lithium. Stay tuned for our take on Goal Zero Vs Lion Energy.
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Lion Energy Vs Goal Zero: Face-Off
Though new to the business, Lion Energy is indeed a growing brand. It offers a variety of portable solar products to ensure safe and reliable on-the-go power for specific customers like campers, tailgaters, and preppers. Goal Zero, in the meantime, is a well-established firm with its collection of award-winning portable solar products.
When it comes to solar power stations, it is a fact that Lion offers only a handful of models. But it is more known for its collection of practical solar power kits for specific purposes.
The 922Wh Safari ME is actually the top-ender of its power stations. It is when Yeti 1000 is the medium variant of Goal Zero’s famous second-gen Yeti Lithium series, which has several other models under and below it.
Basically, both Safari ME and Yeti 1000 appear in the mid-range category of solar power stations. However, in the case of Lion Safari, thanks to its high-capacity expansion module and increased max solar power input, you can expand it up to a heavy-duty solar power station.
It is when Yeti has a limited inverter power and solar power input compared to the Lion. Anyway, below is our take on the Lion Safari ME Vs Goal Zero Yeti 1000 Lithium.
Basic Specs – Power and Output
We would like to start the comparison with a detailed look at the basic specs of the power stations.
As mentioned above, the Lion power station equips a 922Wh LiFePO4 lithium-iron-phosphate battery. It is when its Yeti alternative has a 1045Wh, 96.8Ah (10.8V) lithium battery. Certainly, they are the battery packs integrated into the devices, which you can further expand using respective supplementary battery packs.
Next, let us explore the built-in inverters. Well, the Lion power station has a clear edge over its Yeti replacement in this regard. The machine is designed with a 3000W power inverter that can peak at 4000 watts. In the meantime, Yeti 1000 features a 1500W inverter with a surge of 3000 watts.
By the way, both the machines incorporate dual AC sockets. They are the US standard AC plugs that can operate your household and emergency appliances. Anyway, Safari ME wins over Yeti 1000 as it is capable of supporting more powerful appliances.
Yes, are you getting two incredible modular power stations from Lion Energy and Goal Zero. You can attach the additionally available expansion battery packs under the main units and connect them via the designated linking cables. Both the power stations have the same setting in terms of expandability.
Next, let us explore the specs of the available expansion modules. When it comes to Lion Energy, the brand has a powerful 2048Wh lithium battery with 3500+ charging cycles. With its higher capacity, the expansion module can take the overall storage capacity of the power station up to around three times.
The Lion expansion module weighs 44 lbs and it has a size of 16.7 x 9.6 x 9.8 in. Lion offers it individually and in the bundles that pack up Safari ME and compatible solar panels.
Next, let us explore Goal Zero’s expansion module for Yeti. Called Yeti Tank, it is a 1200Wh battery pack of 100Ah @12V capacity. The sad thing is that it is a conventional lead-acid (AGM) battery, though you can attach multiple units of it to a Yeti power station. It also needs an exclusive cable for the chaining.
As a lead-acid battery, Yeti Tank weighs almost two times higher than Lion’s expansion module but is half of its storage capacity, though. Clearly, it weighs 77 lbs, and it has a size of 15.5 x 7.5 x 10.5 in.
Besides AC sockets, the power stations feature several other charging points. Lion Safari ME has got dual USB-A ports at 5V 2.4A each and as many USB-C outlets as 20V 3A (60 Watt Max). Plus, it integrates a 12V carport.
At the same time, Yeti 1000 highlights four 2.4A USB ports, but it has no USB-C port. Coming to the DC sockets, it has an edge with multiple options. They include dual 6mm 12V DC barrel ports @ 120W, one 12V Anderson Power Pole port up to 10A (120W max), and a regular 12V cigarette lighter charger.
Regarding the charging input options, both the devices can be charged from multiple sources, including solar. For solar charging, the Lion integrates a 585W MPPT controller, which can support solar panels up to 668 watts.
In the case of Yeti 1000, it misses an MPPT controller. Instead, it has a traditional PWM charge controller, which makes solar charging quite slower compared to an MPPT-based system. Anyway, Yeti 1000 features a Power-Pole charging port that can support a solar input of 14-22V, up to 30A or 360W solar panels.
For AC charging, it features an 8mm AC charging port that can support 14-22V, up to 10A (120W max). Lion can also be charged from an AC socket or carport. Shortly, Lion is a clear winner in solar charging, thanks to its high maximum solar input voltage capacity.
Design and Size
Next, in our Goal Zero Vs Lion Energy article, we would like to explore the design aspects of both machines. Well, Yeti 1000 evidently follows the standard design of the second-generation Yeti series. Yeti is rather boxy in profile compared to Safari ME, which has a more portable squarish form factor.
Specifically, Yeti 1000 measures at 10.1 x 15.3 x 9.3 in, while its Lion alternative has a size of 18.7 x 12.8 x 12.8 in. Both sport practical carrying handles so that you can move them easily on your trips. Safari ME looks to have rather stronger metal handles that are a little bit bulged out from the main body for convenient carrying.
For better durability, both devices have strong and thick safety guards on the edges, but Lion looks more rugged with a bumper-like guard across the main body. When it comes to the display and other charging points, Lion has spread out all the units across the front panel, while Yeti has them neatly accommodated.
Meanwhile, with a weight of 40 lbs, Yeti is more lightweight. It is when Lion Safari weighs 45.5 lbs. Though Lion’s battery is lithium and also a bit smaller compared to Yeti’s, Lion packs up a more powerful power inverter, MPPT solar charge controller, and other components under the hood for the increased weight.
Compatible Solar Chargers
Both the brands offer exclusive solar chargers for their power stations, but Goal Zero has multiple options in its Boulder and Nomad panels. Lion has a single 100W suitcase solar charger, which is available in 12V and 24V options. The brand bundles this solar charger in many of its great solar power kits.
That is certainly a highly efficient mono solar charger with all the basic features, including kickstands, carrying handles, and lightweight design. Once folded down, you can store it in a small room and enjoy maximum flexibility in usage. Check out its latest price on the link below.
Meanwhile, Goal Zero is known for its two series of solar chargers – Boulder and Nomad. Boulder is a series of regular, glass-and-metal panels, which include a variety of models, ranging from a 50W to a 200W. There are two suitcase solar panels – 100W Briefcase and 200W Briefcase.
For Yeti 1000W, Boulder 100 Briefcase is an ideal choice. You can buy multiple units of it to make it charge faster. Or rather bulkier Boulder 200 Briefcase is a more powerful option. Both the solar chargers are made of quality mono solar cells and anodized aluminum frames to ensure increased quality and durability.
So, it is a simple job to find the best solar charger for the power stations. But when it comes to solar charging speeds, Lion Energy Safari ME is a clear winner. Primarily, it can support higher solar power input at a fast pace, thanks to its powerful MPPT controller.
In this regard, Yeti 1000 terribly falls short to Lion as it carries a traditional PWM solar charge controller only. In other words, Yeti 1000 can only support three 100W solar panels, while Safari ME can be attached to as many as six 100W panels for speedy charging from the sunlight.
That has been our take on Lion Energy Vs Goal Zero. We have made a factual comparison and we hope it will help you have a basic idea about the products. Both devices have several things in common, but the Lion product has some visible advantages considering the modern features as it is a new-gen product. Goal Zero’s reply to Lion can only be expected in its newly announced Yeti 1000X.
Anyway, price-wise, Lion Energy is apparently a bit higher. It starts at $2,350 and you need to spend $1750 for its expansion battery. A Lion Energy Safari ME Deluxe kit with six 100W solar suitcases comes at $4999. Yeti 1000 is a bit cheaper, but feature-wise, it is not wrong to say that it is not up to the mark in a tussle with Safari ME.