15,000mAh battery pack for $14

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There sure are a lot of these out there these days. They even turn up at the dollar store.

Are there any indications as to what sort of battery pack you definitely shouldn’t buy? Or are they all pretty much the same?

Well, I can pretty much guarantee that none of them have UN38.3 battery shipping certification, so every shipment is a violation of DOT regulations… so really the answer is “none of them”.

FCC mark and UN38.3 test report are minimum required docs for sale into the USA. Both are “self regulating” but require supporting documentation to be supplied upon request.

It’s killing me that all of these great battery packs tend to be 5 Volts. I would definitely pay more than twice the price for similar density in 9, 12, 15 Volts or more. I am not confident to test how whatever charge/discharge circuitry in these might react to being run in series.

Fortunately, my raspberry pi’s all run on 5 volts so I’m happy!

It’s usable, but 5V isn’t much headroom for analog computation. Even 5V (or worse, 3.3V) for ADC/DAC on digital systems involves a lot of tradeoffs.

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