The Omnicharge Ultimate is a beast of portable AC, DTAP and USB power

May 11, 2019

Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh is an entrepreneur, photography inventor, journalist, educator, and writer based in Israel. With over 25 years of experience in the photo-video industry, Udi has built and sold several photography-related brands. Udi has a double degree in mass media communications and computer science.

May 11, 2019

Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh is an entrepreneur, photography inventor, journalist, educator, and writer based in Israel. With over 25 years of experience in the photo-video industry, Udi has built and sold several photography-related brands. Udi has a double degree in mass media communications and computer science.

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The Omnicharge Ultimate has a whopping capacity of 34,800mAh. This is a lot of juice. If you are looking for V-mount compatible, you’d be looking at about a 125Wh battery. But, I am jumping ahead of myself. Let’s start again.

The Omnicharge Ultimate is basically a power bank on steroids. It is similar to your 10,000mAh power bank that you carry everywhere because your phone battery gets nuked by midday. Only it is three and a half times as strong and features an AC outlet, a super-detailed LCD monitor, a variable DC output and a 3 USB ports.

We met with Omnicharge at NAB 2019 and we got a unit for testing. I gotta say. It’s an incredible piece of kit that is well thought out.

Let’s look at the specs:

  • 34,800mAh Capacity
  • 1 x USB Type-C Power Input/Output Port
  • 2 x USB Type-A Charging Ports
  • 120W AC Power Outlet
  • 150W DC-Out Port
  • Adjustable Voltage and Amperage
  • Removable Battery Pack
  • Passthrough Charging
  • Splash- and Dust-Resistant

In the box

  • Omni Ultimate
  • 60W AC Wall Charger
  • DC Out Cable (MR30 to 5.5 x 2.1mm Female)

Build

The version that we got has a 120V US power outlet, but there is also a version with a European outlet at 230V. Watt rating is similar on both.  Since many of today’s devices use a multi-current power brick, I wish that the unit shipped with one of those universal sockets. Though, I see the safety benefit of having a dedicated socket per geography.

The unit feels very solid, it is made of an aluminum housing with a rubberized jacket. All the outlets have a rubber cap, to fend any stray water, but I will not dunk it in a water tank.

There is a small LCD and some buttons in the front which provide some interesting controls. Firstly, you can decide which power options you want active: USB, AC or both. I assume this help both with safety and with increasing battery time. Or even turning the unit off when it goes to storage.

What will it do?

Well, pretty much anything that will fit it’s power and capacity rating. If you own a Mavic for example, it will give you two full battery loads (and then some).

As we mentioned before, there is no shortage of outlets. There are two QC3.0 fast ports for phones or other gadgets, a USB-C with PD up to 60W for laptops, a MR30 plug (rant coming soon) and the awesome AC outlet which will take pretty much any charger, or even a small fridge if you go camping.

This plethora of ports means that you can use one unit as a single power source for a shoot. In our case, it was a full night timelapse, where the Omni powered a SYRP slider (two USB ports), an A7III (USB), and a small light (MR30 to DC jack). None stopped during the night.

One of the more interesting features (which was also present at the previous Omni 20 model), is the ability to control the output voltage on the DC outlet. Need NPF voltage? set it to 7.2; DTAP? set it to 14.4; Wanna power a Spekular light? no problem! set the unit to 24V.

The fact that it provides 150W of continuous power means that you can power even demanding units. Interestingly, the AC output does not only supports 120W and we could not power a full Spekular star or an Aputure 120D using the AC outlet it. We were able to get almost two hours of light from our Godox SL60, though.

Battery Swap

There is a way to swap batteries on the Omnicharge Ultimate. But it involves removing screws and some light handymanship. That would come in handy if you need more than 125W on a single trip. A tool-less operation would have been a nice feature, especially if you need a swap in the field. But I suspect that most customers would not use the extra battery feature, so I am not sure if it’s worth the engineering effort.

Missing for perfect score:

My only two caveats with the units were the supplied charger which goes up to 60W, while the Omni supports a 90W intake. It’s not bad per-se. The Omni charges completely in three hours using this charger which is good enough. but if you make a unit that supports a 90W intake, spoil us some more and give us the 90W charger :) Gotta say though, this is not really an issue, If they did not tell me about the 90W intake, I would have been perfectly happy with 60W.

The other thing, which is the only “Real” issue is the DC-out port. While it is not overly unique, it is not overly standard either, which means that you’ll have to get your fix from Omni. There is also no way to protect your device if you accidentally set the power on this port to a voltage higher than what you need. I talked with Omni at NAB and they are considering a DTAP connection as well.

The Omnicharge Ultimate finished it’s IndieGoGo campaign at November 2018 with a staggering $987,732 in backings. According to Omni, they are almost done shipping units to backers and I assume it will be available on Amazon and B&H shortly after the backers round is completed.

Conclusion

At a predicted price of $599 the Omnicharge Ultimate is not a tool for even the most demanding of smarphone users. It is a tool for pros or serious campers. If you got in on the kickstarter, you should be happy, at $399 it is a real bargain!

Since NAB, we have been using the Omni ultimate quite heavily and we could not be happier. It made several of our off-the-grid productions significantly easier.

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Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh

Udi Tirosh is an entrepreneur, photography inventor, journalist, educator, and writer based in Israel. With over 25 years of experience in the photo-video industry, Udi has built and sold several photography-related brands. Udi has a double degree in mass media communications and computer science.

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15 responses to “The Omnicharge Ultimate is a beast of portable AC, DTAP and USB power”

  1. Martin Maura Avatar
    Martin Maura

    It’s a must have

    1. udi tirosh Avatar
      udi tirosh

      We are indeed very happy!

  2. Marko Avatar
    Marko

    Did you try it with strobes?

    1. udi tirosh Avatar
      udi tirosh

      not yet, but with 120W output, I foresee no issues.

      1. Marko Avatar
        Marko

        Still, would be great to test with 600w/s strobe at full power to see recycle and number of flashes available. As we know, dry specs are one thing and reality is another.

        I am sure many would love to see results, if it is possible of course.

        Cheers

      2. Kaouthia Avatar
        Kaouthia

        I do. A mains powered 600Ws strobe is gonna pull about 2,000 Watts right after it fires to recycle quickly. 120W isn’t going to be anywhere near enough. Even a 100Ws strobe will pull about 300 Watts right after firing.

        It would charge an AD600Pro battery, though. :)

        1. Marko Avatar
          Marko

          Thank you for your reply. It seems that @ste@stephenneff:disqus had the same results, the unit shuts off to prevent damage due to the large wattage pull. I am sure many would have been interested in the battery as a spare power source for strobes.

          True, it would charge a battery no problem. However, I would think it would charge any battery, not only AD600, right?

    2. Stephen Neff Avatar
      Stephen Neff

      Marko,
      I’ve tested a bunch of strobes with the Omni Ultimate and unfortunately most all of them draw over the 120w limit, the draw lasts less than a second usually, but the Omni’s circuitry is focused on safety, so the safety protection trips and shuts of the AC port.
      In my testing (by no means scientific) I didn’t find the 2000w draw from a 600w/s light that @@kaouthia:disqus mentions, but I did see 300-400w. I tested a couple smaller lights in the 150-200w/s range and still saw 150W+ for a fraction of a second which is still going to trigger the circuit protection on the Omni.

      For disclosure, I am a National Account Manager for Omnicharge (US).

      1. Marko Avatar
        Marko

        Thank you for the reply Stephen!

        Like @kaouthia:disqus said, at least we can charge a strobe battery :-). It would have been great if it could be also used as a power source for strobes. Maybe in the future.

      2. Kaouthia Avatar
        Kaouthia

        The draw will depend on the technology of the strobe, for sure. It’s been a while since I tested a strobe on portable battery packs, so that huge brief draw right after a pop may be more applicable to older units with fast recycle times.

  3. Mike Flanagan Avatar
    Mike Flanagan

    Be very weary right now. I backed the original omnicharge and loved it. When the ultimate was announced I jumped at it. Especially for twice the capacity and interchangeable batteries. But after the campaign was over and our money locked in the changed the capacity from 40,000 to 34,000 without telling us and started another campaign before even finishing shipping this out. Im still waiting on my to extra batteries 4 months later. And B&H had it on preorder for 399 which was the same as what I paid. It’s a great product but their follow through and customer service are very lacking. Deliveries keep getting pushed back by a week, then 2, then 2 more and so on. I’ve had 3 separate promised deliveries suddenly go poof for one reason or another

    1. Stephen Neff Avatar
      Stephen Neff

      Hey Mike,
      Have you been in touch with someone on our logistics team for your spare batteries? I know many of the delayed orders have started to be delivered. Let me know and I can try to get you connected to the right people in support.
      Stephen
      Omnicharge
      National Account Manager

      1. Mike Flanagan Avatar
        Mike Flanagan

        Actually I’ve done all my correspondence through IGG and been promised repeatedly that it was in the next batch it’s in the batch in Hong Kong and that it was on it’s way. I wait a few weeks and when I ask again I’m told that no, actually it wasnt in that batch either and I have to wait a few more weeks because all the batteries they had were going in to new units. Of course all of this information is only AFTER giving you guys time and then asking. The unit is great, dont get me wrong, but to have been forced to wait like this and seen so many people blown off about where their orders are is very disconcerting. Add the bait and switch about the batteries capacity and origen and I’m not sure I’m going to be buying any more Omnicharge gear again.

        1. Stephen Neff Avatar
          Stephen Neff

          For what it’s worth, I do apologize for the for the issues you’ve experienced. I’ve only been with the company since January (but I’ve been an Omnicharge user for almost 2 years). My love of the product (both from a design and quality standpoint) is what brought me to the company. If there is anything I can do to help you, please reach out, StephenN at Omnicharge.co.

  4. Marvin @ intrepidmotion Avatar
    Marvin @ intrepidmotion

    Isn’t the capacity of this power bank higher than the allowable limit for airlines? If so, that severely limits its portability for travelers.