Power Dome NX 2485 | A Good Buy?
No one knows when mother nature, in a fit of anger, will throw us a curve ball in the form of hurricanes, twisters, earthquakes, typhoons, snow blizzards, diluvian rains, etc. Nobody knows either when a car is going to experience a nail or screw-related flat tire, or a dead battery due to leaving the dome light(s) or headlights ON inadvertently. Finally, no one anticipates being stranded in no man’s land with a discharged cell phone.
While there is nothing you can do to prevent natural disasters, there are, however, plenty you can do in terms of preparedness to lessen the impact of those dreadful occurrences. Your level of preparation will dictate the manner in which you react (positively or negatively) and respond to these unpleasant eventualities. As much as you would like us to go into minute details as to the full range of steps and measures you can take to address those concerns, due to time constraint however, the scope of this article will be limited to highlighting what the Power Dome NX 2485‘s features and specifications can do for you in those trying circumstances. Is the Power Dome NX 2485 a good buy? Let’s review and draw our own conclusion.
Wagan Tech’s Power Dome NX 2485 is a Compact Multipurpose Emergency Power Supply, which can be used to:
|All-in-one Power Supply Features||All-in-one Power Supply Features|
|Jump Start a Car||Play Radio|
|Inflate a Tire||Provide AC and DC Power Sources|
|Charge Cell Phones, MP3 Players, Tablets, etc.||Provide Emergency Lighting, etc.|
Before we proceed with the review, let us inform and remind you that the Power Dome NX 2485 comes with a User’s Manual, which you must read before operating the unit. Caution and Safety Warnings should be heeded as well.
Features and Specifications
- Inverter with 2 three-prong AC Outlets,
- Inverter ON/OFF Switch
- Inverter Indicator Light, and
- 25 Amp Fuse (the Power Dome NX 2485‘s only serviceable part)
- 12V DC 11Amps Power Socket
- 5V 500mA USB Power Port
- USB ON/OFF Switch, which also serves as a switch for the Power Socket, and
- USB Indicator Light
- Battery Check button to check the Internal Battery status
- The Internal Battery (12V, 14Amp Hour) status is indicated by the Analog Voltmeter Gauge (the Voltmeter Gauge ranges from 11V-15V). If the gauge reads 12.6V or above, the Internal Battery is ready for use; 12V and below, the unit needs to be recharged. It can be recharged 3 ways: with the AC Adapter at home, with the DC Adapter in your car, and with a Solar Panel through the Charger Unit Port. How long should you charge the unit? No more than 48 hours (AC charging), no more than 16 hours (DC charging)
- Charging Indicator Light
- Analog Compressor Gauge. The Analog Compressor Gauge range from 0-260 PSI (Pound per Square Inch) or 0-18 bar.
- Air Compressor Hose
- Telescopic Antenna
- Digital Clock and AM (520-1710 kHz) / FM (88-108 MHz) Radio LCD Display
- Clock Radio Controls (Power Band, Channels (+ and -), Volume (+ and -), and Memory)
- 2 Beautiful Speakers
- 3.5mm Audio Input Jack to play MP3s, and
- Storage Compartment
- Jump Starter Safety Switch (Horizontal Position: ON; Vertical Position: OFF)
- Red Positive (+) Jumper Cable
- Work Light
- Hazard Flasher Lens
- Black Negative (-) Jumper Cable
- Black Rubber Handle
- Jump Starter Safety Switch Caution Label
- Black Rubber Bottom
The Wagan Tech’s Power Dome NX 2485 has 4 power ports on one side:
- 2- AC Outlets
- 1 DC Power Port
- 1 USB Power Port
What can you learn from the Power Dome NX 2485? You’ll learn how to:
- Jump Start a car
- Inflate a tire
- Use the Flashlight and its Hazard Flasher
- Use the DC to AC Inverter
- Use the DC Power Port and the USB Power Port
- Set the Clock and AM/FM Radio
- Charge the Unit, etc.
12V DC Output
The 12V DC Socket (11Amps max) is more than enough to power most DC Appliances.
Radio: The integrated Digital Radio‘s sleek design, along with its dual speakers, is one of our favorite features. It comes with a cluster of 6 digital buttons: Vol+ Vol- to increase and decrease volume; CH+ CH- for tuning in your favorite AM/FM stations and setting the digital clock; Memory to save and recall preset stations, and to access the clock for setting; AM/FM to tune in preset AM, FM stations or the Clock.
The Work Light, a cluster of 9 LED bulbs, is very bright, daylight bright, and the light beam reaches as far as 20 feet.
The Compressor’s 260 PSI is more than enough to inflate a tire, a mattress, a football, etc., in no time.
Audio Output Jack
The conspicuous absence of an Audio Output Jack makes it impossible to listen to the radio within the privacy of a headset. An Audio Output Jack would be appreciated.
One can’t help but acknowledging the beauty of the radio set, and the elegance of its dual speakers. But despite the sleek design, It’s only a matter time (not if, but when) before the digital clock radio controls malfunction, based on our previous experiences with digital radio controls (for the record: the Power Dome NX 2485’s digital controls have not shown any sign of malfunction yet). For that reason – and for that reason alone – we prefer Analog Radios with Tuning Dial and Power Switch/Volume Control Knobs.
The juxtaposition of the Light/Flasher Switch next to the Compressor Switch causes a user to mistake one for the other occasionally, especially in darkness. The Light/Flasher Switch should have been located on top of or next to the Work Light for clear and easy access.
The Power Inverter’s total wattage is only 200W. We would have preferred a minimum of 300W to power appliances and electronics requiring over 200W of power.
The Work Light does not pivot. A 360-degree pivoting light would have added more functionality to the Work Light.
The Internal Sealed Lead Acid Battery is 12V 14 Amp Hour. We would have preferred a 12V 18 Amp Hour for relative extended use.
USB Power Port
The USB Power Port’s specifications are 5V 500 mA. Most Cell Phones charging requirements are at least 5V 1000 mA (1A). A 5V 1A USB Power Port would have been ideal.
The Analog Voltmeter Gauge and the Analog Compressor Pressure Gauge are not back lit, which makes it a stretch to read either one in near darkness.
According to Wagan Tech, the unit’s only serviceable part is the 25A Fuse. The consumer is advised to take the entire unit to a recycling facility “when the battery has reached the end of its lifetime”. We beg to differ and think that, in addition to the 25A Fuse, the following parts should have been serviceable (replaceable) as well: Internal Sealed Battery, Internal Inverter, and Work Light’s cluster of LEDs. The wholesale discarding of the unit at the end of the battery’s lifetime, based on the product’s ill-conception, is ill-advised in our view.
If the Power Dome NX 2485 were a hybrid (battery/gas) car, would disposal of the entire vehicle, and purchase of a brand new one, be the solution to a battery whose lifetime has reached its end? We think not. The company needs to go back to the drawing board to design a customer-friendlier product. But, in spite of the foregoing observation, we strongly suggest that you follow the company’s recommendations with respect to the method of disposal of the unit for safety’s sake, and to totally disregard our opinion, which carries no weight in the matter. Despite the company’s caution, safety warnings, and method of disposal recommendations, a tinkerer’s inquisitive mind would hardly resist the temptation to tamper with the unit.
Despite the company’s advice to discard the unit (Power Dome NX 2485) when its usefulness has reached its end, there are still parts that are replaceable, besides the external 25A fuse:
- AC Charging Adapter
- DC Charging Adapter, and
- Battery (12V 14AH – AA5021)
We’ve only scratched the surface about what the Power Dome NX 2485 has to offer. If you care to explore in depth the breadth of features, specifications, and functionality of the Power Dome NX 2485, buy the unit and read the User’s Manual before you use it .
In light of the pros and cons, should you own this Compact Multipurpose Emergency Power Supply or not? We think the matter calls for a pragmatic decision: it’s better to own one in time of emergency than to do without. And the right time to buy one is now, not in the midst of trials and tribulations (emergency). An ounce of prevention (immediate action) is better than a pound of cure (procrastination). Preemption is better than reaction. Act now! Is the Power Dome NX 2485 a good buy ? We think, based on its practical features and specifications, that it is; although there is plenty of room for improvement.
As a bonus, to see the unit in action, read and watch how to use the Power Dome NX 2485 to power your VOIP and cell phones, blackout or not.