Portable power stations are becoming increasingly popular, and for good reason. They offer a reliable source of power for camping trips or as an emergency backup during unexpected blackouts. However, choosing the right one can be a bit tricky.
Understanding battery capacity and the different types of battery technology, such as Lithium-ion versus LiFePO4, can pose challenges to potential buyers. It’s not always easy to know what will best suit your needs.
In this article, we’ll be comparing two top models: the EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max and the Jackery Explorer 240. We aim to provide you with a detailed comparison to help you make an informed decision on which portable power station is best suited for your specific requirements.
Before diving in, we recommend you check out the helpful comparison tables on the EcoFlow and Jackery websites to get a feel for where these products sit in their line-up:
Battery Specs and Features
Battery Capacity (Wh): The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max, with a capacity of 512Wh, clearly outperforms the Jackery Explorer 240 which only offers 240Wh. This spec indicates the energy storage capability of each device in watt-hours. A higher figure means you can power more devices for longer periods. For those with significant energy needs, a model like the EcoFlow would be more suitable.
Battery Type: The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max utilises a LiFePO4 battery, renowned for its safety and longevity. This makes it an excellent choice for regular use or important applications. Conversely, the Jackery Explorer 240 employs a standard Lithium-ion battery which typically offers greater energy density but may not last as long.
Understanding the type of battery can help you determine the lifespan and operational safety of each unit.
Life Cycles: The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max boasts a significant advantage with its 3000 cycles to 80%, compared to the Jackery Explorer 240’s lower count of just 1000 cycles. This indicates that the EcoFlow model offers a longer lifespan, potentially providing better value over time. The disparity in cycle counts between these two models highlights a key difference in their longevity and cost-effectiveness.
Expandable Capacity: Both the EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max and Jackery Explorer 240 lack this feature. This means they don’t offer the option to connect additional batteries for increased storage capacity. It’s a bit of a letdown, especially if you’re planning on being off-grid for a while.
AC Output (W): The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max, with a maximum continuous power output of 500W from its AC outlets, clearly outperforms the Jackery Explorer 240’s 200W. This difference in wattage rating is significant if you’re planning to run high-powered devices such as microwaves or power tools. The higher wattage of the EcoFlow model makes it more suitable for these types of appliances. Therefore, between the two models, the EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max offers greater versatility and capability for powering demanding devices.
Surge Power (W): The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max, with its 1000W capacity, is clearly more capable of handling high power demands compared to the Jackery Explorer 240’s 400W. This difference could be significant when powering devices that require a surge at startup, such as fridge compressors. Therefore, in terms of surge power capabilities, the EcoFlow model outperforms the Jackery one.
Ports and Outlets
AC Outlets: The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max and the Jackery Explorer 240 differ in their number of AC outlets. The former has two, while the latter only has one. This means you can power more devices at once with the EcoFlow model.
Both models offer a voltage of 230V on their outlets. It’s important to ensure this matches your device requirements before use.
USB-A Outlets: The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max and the Jackery Explorer 240 both offer USB-A ports for charging low-power devices. However, there’s a difference in the number of outlets provided. The EcoFlow model has one outlet while the Jackery model offers two.
This means that with the Jackery Explorer 240, you can charge more devices simultaneously compared to the EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max. Both models provide an output of 5V, 2.4A which indicates they have similar charging speeds for your gadgets.
In terms of versatility and convenience, it seems like the Jackery Explorer is slightly ahead due to its additional port. But remember, this doesn’t necessarily mean it’s superior overall – other features should also be considered
USB-C Outlets: The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max clearly outperforms the Jackery Explorer 240 in terms of outlet options. It offers a range from 5V to 20V at a maximum of 100W, while the latter doesn’t provide any. This means that the EcoFlow model can charge larger devices like laptops more efficiently.
Moreover, having multiple ports allows for simultaneous charging of various gadgets. In contrast, the lack of this feature on the Jackery model limits its functionality. Hence, when it comes to versatility and power capacity, EcoFlow holds an evident advantage.
Lastly, USB-C is recognised as a newer standard which both models should ideally have incorporated. However, only EcoFlow has done so thus far – another point in its favour
DC5521 Outlets (5.5mm): The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max features a single DC outlet with a maximum output of 12.6V, 3A, and 36W. In contrast, the Jackery Explorer 240 doesn’t offer this feature.
These outlets are particularly handy for certain electronic devices and smaller appliances. It’s worth checking if any of your gadgets require this type of connection.
Other DC Outlets: Both the EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max and Jackery Explorer 240 models come equipped with a single car outlet. This feature is particularly useful for those who utilise devices that require car chargers or specific plugs.
AC Charging (W): The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max boasts a maximum power of 660W, which generally indicates quicker charging. On the other hand, the Jackery Explorer 240 doesn’t support direct AC charging and requires an external charger. This difference in specs could impact user convenience and charge time.
DC / Car Charging: Both the EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max and Jackery Explorer 240 support a voltage of 12V/24V. This indicates that they can be charged from a car or other DC source, which is handy for road trips or situations where an AC outlet isn’t accessible. However, the EcoFlow model has a higher maximum output at 100W compared to the unspecified max output of the Jackery model.
Solar Charging (W): The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max has a higher maximum wattage intake at 220W, compared to the Jackery Explorer 240’s 100W. This suggests that the EcoFlow model would charge faster from solar panels, making it potentially more suitable for off-grid or emergency use.
Maximum Input (W): The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max, with a maximum input of 660W, can accept more power from charging sources compared to the Jackery Explorer 240. The latter doesn’t support direct AC charging and requires an external charger. This difference in wattage could potentially lead to faster charge times for the EcoFlow model.
Wireless Charging Pad: Both the EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max and Jackery Explorer 240 models lack wireless charging capabilities. This feature, while handy for charging smartphones or other devices without cords, isn’t considered essential by all users.
Smart App Control: The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max offers the advantage of app control and monitoring, providing real-time data such as battery status and power input/output. This is facilitated through Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connectivity.
In contrast, the Jackery Explorer 240 lacks this feature entirely. It doesn’t provide any form of app-based control or monitoring, nor does it offer Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connection capabilities for such purposes.
Warranty: The EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max offers a warranty period of five years, while the Jackery Explorer 240 provides a two plus one-year warranty. This suggests that the manufacturer of EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max has more confidence in their product’s longevity and reliability. However, it’s always wise to scrutinise the terms and conditions within these warranties.
EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max vs Jackery Explorer 240 Comparison Table
|EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max
|Jackery Explorer 240
|Battery Capacity (Wh)
|3000 cycles to 80%
|1000 to 80+%
|AC Output (W)
|Surge Power (W)
|2 Outlets – 230V
|1 Outlet – 230V
|1 Outlet – 5V, 2.4A, 12W Max
|2 Outlets – 5V, 2.4A
|1 Outlet – 5/9/12/15/20V 5A, 100W Max
|DC5521 Outlets (5.5mm)
|1 Outlet – 12.6V, 3A, 36W Max
|Other DC Outlets
|1x Car Outlet
|1x Car Outlet
|Wireless Charging Pad
|Solar Charging (W)
|AC Charging (W)
|Doesn’t support direct AC charging – use external AC charger provided
|DC / Car Charging
|12V/24V, 8A, 100W Max
|Maximum Input (W)
|doesn’t support direct AC charging – use external AC charger provided
|Smart App Control
In conclusion, the EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max and Jackery Explorer 240 both have their strengths and weaknesses. The EcoFlow model clearly outperforms in terms of energy storage capacity, battery type, lifespan, power output, outlet options and charging capabilities. It’s also heavier and larger in size but offers a longer warranty period and app control features.
This makes it potentially more suitable for those with significant energy needs or planning to be off-grid for extended periods. On the other hand, the Jackery Explorer 240 is lighter and more compact but has fewer features and lower specs overall.
It does offer an additional USB-A port which may make it slightly more convenient for charging multiple low-power devices simultaneously. This could make it a better fit for users who prioritise portability over power capacity or longevity. Ultimately though, your choice between these two models should depend on your specific requirements and preferences.