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Old 13-05-2015, 10:46   #1
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Buying Inverter Advice Needed

Hi all,

I need a good quality 300W inverter (true sine), good for small electronics up to notebook, iPad charging. Ciggie adapter would b super!

Any suggestions for the PNW area, I am currently in the Victoria BC, Portland OR area.

Cheers, Ben
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Old 13-05-2015, 11:53   #2
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

True sine wave is not required, except for applications powering poorly-designed audio equipment. It is probably unavailable in the requested low-output 300W power.

A cigarette adapter drawing over 25A is not advised.
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Old 13-05-2015, 11:56   #3
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

Contrary to the prior post....pure sine is available in the smaller sizes....I have no recommendations however. I got one at frys electronics but dont remember who made it.


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Old 13-05-2015, 21:33   #4
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Buying Inverter Advice Needed

Xantrex out of Marysville Wa has a great selection of modified and true sine wave inverters. Defender.com carries them.
Also eBay may be of some help.


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Old 13-05-2015, 21:50   #5
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

Charge the ipad with a USB cord and adapter from a 12 volt plug.
WAAY more efficient.
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Old 13-05-2015, 22:54   #6
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

Deviating slightly from thread. How does everyone charge their notebook/laptops. there must be a more efficient way than inverting your 12 volt to 240 volts(australia) then using your charging brick to revert to say the 18 volts(varies with brand) output required?
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Old 14-05-2015, 00:21   #7
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

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Deviating slightly from thread. How does everyone charge their notebook/laptops. there must be a more efficient way than inverting your 12 volt to 240 volts(australia) then using your charging brick to revert to say the 18 volts(varies with brand) output required?
Get a car adapter laptop power supply. Converts 12v to 19v. They sell them on Ebay dirt cheap, I think I bought an 80w one for $7 or so. It works great for both of my laptops.
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Old 14-05-2015, 00:27   #8
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

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Originally Posted by benm View Post
Hi all,

I need a good quality 300W inverter (true sine), good for small electronics up to notebook, iPad charging. Ciggie adapter would b super!

Any suggestions for the PNW area, I am currently in the Victoria BC, Portland OR area.

Cheers, Ben
As mentioned above, Fry's has them (if you have Fry's up there) and Ebay has them as well. From my experience with a 350w MSW inverter, the cig lighter socket couldn't provide enough voltage under power, the voltage drop was bad enough the low voltage alarm on the inverter went off. Once I hardwired it into the fuse panel, it worked great. Depending on how thin the wires are to your cig socket, you might be able to get away with splicing into the wires behind the socket, other wise you might be forced into running a dedicated line with decent sized wire to the inverter.
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Old 14-05-2015, 00:33   #9
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

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Originally Posted by benm View Post
Hi all,

I need a good quality 300W inverter (true sine), good for small electronics up to notebook, iPad charging. Ciggie adapter would b super!

Any suggestions for the PNW area, I am currently in the Victoria BC, Portland OR area.

Cheers, Ben
On second thought, you could buy a car charger adapter for your laptop, it plugs right into the lighter socket and eliminates the need for an inverter. They're only $7-8 on Ebay and you can charge your tablet, phone, etc off of the laptop USB ports, or use a car USB adapter, they're only a couple of dollars. I bought a 4 amp car charger because a tablet can take a long time to charge on a lower output charger.
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Old 14-05-2015, 09:22   #10
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

I love Fryes, but since none up this way, west marine has a good 400w inverter that I have been using for a couple of years now. Powers the boombox nicely. The fan is a bit noisy though.
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Old 14-05-2015, 15:39   #11
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

If at possible I recommend to go as big as possible.
One start by changing the laptop or the phone and soon find more use for it like an electric drill a soldering iron etc.
Also the peak power matters as an electric drill needs a bit more when starting.
I recommend a 1000/2000w inverter although pure sine wave is nice, a modified sine wave is a lot cheaper and works fine for most applications like power tools.
I bought a low frequency Powerjack off ebay and cannot fault it.
Hope this helps,
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Old 14-05-2015, 17:09   #12
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

I recommend going as small as possible. The efficiency of the bigger inverters is terrible at low power levels.
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Old 14-05-2015, 17:44   #13
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

Good point!

It depends where you end up I guess. If you stick to the basics and have power limitations you are 100% correct, the bigger inverters have a poor efficiency.

I however started out just wanting to charge the phone when out at sea.
Only too soon I found that I kept adding things like a small fridge, a stereo, better sound system, power tools for maintenace jobs and so on.

Loaded, the Powerjack inverters efficiency is around the 80% mark although its rated much higher at over 90%

Needless to say, Im a motor cruiser and a luxuary junkie down to an electric blanket on cold nights

Fortunately I do have excess power at a price so its not too critical in my setup.

The joys of sail boaters vs stinkpots!
Given that its a sail boat thread I prob shouldnt have commented
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Old 14-05-2015, 20:27   #14
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

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Originally Posted by socaldmax View Post
Get a car adapter laptop power supply. Converts 12v to 19v. They sell them on Ebay dirt cheap, I think I bought an 80w one for $7 or so. It works great for both of my laptops.
+1. Does not make sense to change DC to AC back to DC. I have a pure sine 1500 watt inverter that I use all the time for AC but if it's just on standby it uses one amp so to charge my phone I use a cigarette lighter adapter
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Old 14-05-2015, 22:55   #15
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Re: Buying Inverter Advice Needed

Car charger into the lighter is the answer to charge them. Charge my laptop and phone this way.
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