Test/review of TLife Power bank TC-01

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HKJ
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Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Test/review of TLife Power bank TC-01

TLife Power bank TC-01
DSC_7344
Official specifications:


  • Model: TC-01
  • Shell Material: Plastic ABS
  • Color: Black
  • Dimensions: (5.12 × 1.02 × 3.35)” / (13 × 2.6 × 8.5)cm
  • Weight: 3.74oz / 106g
  • 2-in-1: 18650 Battery Charger + Smart Power Bank
  • Four Slots Suitable for: 4 × 18650 Batteries(Not Included)
  • Power Bank FunctionsUsed as an External Emergency Charger for Cell Phones, Tablets and Other USB Devices
  • Input: Micro usb 5V 1A
  • Output: 2x usb (5V 1A+2A)
  • Self discharge: 2mAh/day

How does it look
DSC_7337 DSC_7338
The power bank is delivered in a cardboard box with a window and some specifications on the back.
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It contains the power bank, a usb cable and a “instruction sheet”.
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All connectors is placed at one end

  • Micro usb: Charge input.
  • 1A and 2A usb output.
  • Power on button.

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On the other end of the box is a display.
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There is no doubt when the power bank is turned on.
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This is the power status display, when charging a mains cord is shown to the left and the bars in the batteries are animated.
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When current is drawn the display will show voltage and current for each slot. The display will not indicate charging.
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The box do not include any batteries, it is up to the user to supply from one to four batteries.
The length of the batteries can be from about 58mm to 69mm.
Measurements


  • Usb output 1A is coded as usb charger (DCP)
  • Usb output 2A is coded as Apple 2.1A
  • Power consumption from battery when off is 1.5mA
  • Power consumption from battery when on is 18mA
  • Power consumption from battery at 2V is 0.1mA
  • Limit for detecting current draw or not is about 30mA load on usb.
  • Display shows 5.15V, but output is only 5.09V
  • The four battery slots are independent, i.e. no problem mixing full and empty batteries.
  • Can be used as UPS
  • Size: 130 × 83.3 × 26.4mm
  • Weight: 107g (Accessories and batteries not included)

TLife%20TC-01%201A%20load%20sweep
The 1A output will current limit at about 1.4A, this is good.
TLife%20TC-01%202A%20load%20sweep
The 2A limits just below 2.1A, it would have been nice if that had been 2.2A, due to the 2.1A coding.
TLife%20TC-01%202A%20charging%20load%20sweep
Using the output while charging is not a problem. There must be a battery in it for this to work.
Meter
The meter is not very precise, but it gives a very good idea about the current draw.
TLife%20TC-01%202A%20usb%20out%2010ohm
At 0.5A the output has no problem maintaining the output voltage until the battery is empty.
TLife%20TC-01%202A%20usb%20out%205ohm
With 1A load the output voltage is lower, but stable. This time I monitor the battery voltage and as can be seen it stops when the battery is down to 3V.
TLife%20TC-01%202A%20usb%20out%202.5ohm
The box can deliver 2A for some time, but it got to hot and it died, this is not very good.
10ohm2A
Noise is 12mV rms and 100mVpp
10ohm1A
Noise is 11mV rms and 86mVpp
5ohm2A
Noise is 33mV rms and 330mVpp
5ohm1A
Noise is 18mV rms and 100mVpp
2.5ohm2A
Noise is 33mV rms and 200mVpp
TLife%20TC-01%20charge%20%284xSA18650-33%29
The rated 1A input current is not correct, it will use up to 1.5A while charging and more if any of the outputs is drawing power.
The charging looks good enough, but it takes 10 hours.
TLife%20TC-01%20charge%200.5ohm%20%284xSA18650-33%29
Simulating a long usb cable with a resistor will reduce the charger current, but not much. The time is about 12 hours.
Conclusion
This power bank has many good details:

  • Long battery slot, i.e. can handle some protected batteries.
  • Can be used as UPS
  • Independent slots
  • The display with current on each port
  • Fairly low noise
  • Over load protection
  • Easy battery replacement, i.e. this makes it possible carry spare batteries or use it as 18650 charger.

But some details could be better, the worst is that it died during my 2A discharge test, this is not good. The standby current is a bit on the high side, i.e. it cannot be stored for months with batteries in. I would also have prefered auto coding on the 2A port and a slightly bit more current.
For most equipment it is a good power bank, but watch the current readout, if it is near 2A, there is a risk it will die, this also means my final rating is only acceptable.
Notes
The power bank was supplied by Tmart for a review.
Read more about how I test USB power supplies and chargers

My website with reviews of many chargers and batteries (More than 1000): https://lygte-info.dk/

angerdan
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Tinderbox UK
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It`s the same as the Tomo and Soshine versions.

 

Is it possible to determine any parasitic drain on the 18650 cells when the power bank is shut down, As an owner on CPS found his battery`s flat after leaving his for a few weeks.

 

Thanks

 

John.

Maha C9000 – LaCrosse BC-900 – Floureon BT-C3100 V2.2 – Accumanger 10 and 20 -Thunder AC6 LiitoKala Lii-100 – Cozypony 24W Solar Panel – Soshine H4 – Soshine T2 – Soshine E4S

Tmart
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Thanks for HKJ’s review. There has a $4 coupon code TC01 for this item, final price is about $14 via our different warehouses.

Black one: http://www.tmart.com/TLIFE-Intelligent-Portable-4-Slots-18650-Battery-Ch...

White one: http://www.tmart.com/TLIFE-Intelligent-Portable-4-Slots-18650-Battery-Ch...

Thank you everyone.

Tmart.com's Mission Statement:

To provide high quality products at low price.

To provide fast, efficient order turnaround.

To provide highest level of customers service.

HKJ
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Tinderbox UK wrote:

Is it possible to determine any parasitic drain on the 18650 cells when the power bank is shut down, As an owner on CPS found his battery`s flat after leaving his for a few weeks.

I measured it to 1.5mA in the review.

My website with reviews of many chargers and batteries (More than 1000): https://lygte-info.dk/

will34
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Thanks for the review!

The biggest issue I see with this powerbank is the output voltage drop when under load. This and the added resistance from the cable means the device won’t charge at its optimal speed.

When using a USB load or or any other kind of fixed current load it will always pull the current, but most phones will draw the current depending on the output voltage, for example my iPhone 7+ draws 1.85A from a 5.1V USB port and exactly 2A from a 5.3V port.

This device can come in handy for an emergency if one had plenty of 18650s, but imo can’t be treated as a true powerbank.

angerdan
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What’s the difference between TLife TC-01 and Tomo M4 ?