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Lifewire / Jeremy Laukkonen
High battery capacity
High wattage over USB
Crisp, clear LCD display
Wireless charging is touchy
Complicated menu system
Soft touch rubber construction
The Omnicharge Omni 20+ is a premium power bank with a premium price and a feature set you won’t find anywhere else, just make sure you have a compatible USB-C charger ready to go.
The Omnicharge Omni 20+ is a special sort of power bank that tries to be all things for all people. With a decent 71Wh capacity and a wide variety of ways to input and output power, including USB-C and a wireless Qi charger, it comes pretty close.
Always on the lookout for ways to simplify my road kit, I recently slipped an Omni 20+ into my messenger bag to see how well it can stand-in for the assortment of chargers I normally pack. Through about a week of use and testing, I was able to get a pretty good feel for how well the Omni 20+ performs, how well it charges a variety of devices, and whether or not it’s worth the fairly stiff asking price.
The Omni 20+ is a great looking device, with an all-black case and gem-cut edges that fit in nicely when used alongside my HP Spectre x360. The top and bottom are completely bereft of any markings, hiding the presence of a Qi wireless charger hidden in the top, and the labels that it does have for inputs and outputs are understated.
The power inputs and outputs are all located on the front and sides of the device, which minimizes cord clutter a bit. I prefer power bricks that allow you to plug everything into one side, but the Omni 20+ is set up more cleanly than some I’ve used.
My one real issue with the design is the choice to use soft-touch rubber. It looks nice now, and it feels nice, and I suppose it helps absorb some shock when packed away for travel, but this is a material that just isn’t made to go the distance. Soft-touch rubber tends to degrade and get sticky over time, attracting all manner of lint and dust, and also becoming quite unpleasant to touch.
The USB-C port is capable of fast charging some devices and providing up to 60W of power.
For a premium device with a premium price like the Omni 20+, I’d like to see a different material used for the case.
While it’s clear that a lot of thought and care went into designing the Omni 20+, it’s just as clear that almost no thought was given over to the packaging and documentation. When you open the box, you’re greeted with the battery itself, a USB-A to C cable, a USB-C to C cable, and a couple of brochures. One of those brochures is marked as a quick start guide, but it really isn’t.
The two things lacking in this presentation are a charging cable and an actual instruction manual, the latter of which ends up being a huge problem due to the confusing nature of the display and controls.
When you look at the Omni 20+, you can see that the barrel jack and USB-C plug are both marked IN/OUT, indicating that you can use these ports to charge the battery or to charge other devices.
I tried using the included USB-A to C cable to plug the Omni 20+ into the BESTEK power strip tower I keep on my desk, but it didn’t work. There was some kind of miscommunication somewhere between the circuitry in the power strip USB ports and the Omni 20+ that caused the charging process to start and stop over and over at very short intervals.
The next thing I tried was the USB-Charger that came with my Nintendo Switch, and that worked just fine. According to the documentation that’s available from the Omnicharge website, but not in the box, you can use a USB-C charger up to 45W, or you can use a 5.5x82.1mm barrel plug that falls anywhere in the 4.5 - 36V range.
Once you’ve fully charged the Omni 20+, you need to discharge and then charge it again to completely calibrate the battery. The USB-C port is plug and play, meaning you can plug any USB-C device in and power it up without changing any settings, but you do have to use the somewhat confusing LCD display if you want to charge using the power outlet, barrel connector, or the USB-A ports. None of this is terribly complicated, but I did need to download an instructions PDF from the official Omnicharge site.
The display is small, but it’s quite bright and easy to read. The only issue is that it isn’t particularly easy to figure out what the individual icons mean, or how to use the display to change input and output settings, without referring to an instruction manual that isn’t included in the box.
I’ve already covered the issue with the manual in the previous section, so suffice it to say I recommend avoiding frustration and just downloading the manual from the Omnicharge website rather than trying to figure out the display and controls on your own.
The Omni 20+ includes a nice array of sockets and ports, managing to cover all of the important bases with ease. On one side, you’ll find a USB-C port and a barrel connector port, which are both capable of charging the Omni 20+ or providing power to other devices.
The USB-C port is capable of fast charging some devices and providing up to 60W of power. This isn’t universal, but it worked for my Pixel 3 and the other devices I had on hand for testing.
The barrel port can be used to power up your laptop and other devices that normally require an external power adapter. To accomplish that, however, you’ll need a 5.5 x 2.1mm barrel plug and an adapter tip designed for your device.
I did have a barrel connector and adapter tip on hand to charge my HP Spectre x360 on the road, and appreciated the fact that I was able to leave the power adapter at home. For a power bank in this price range, though, I’d expect the necessary hardware to be included in the box.
While this power bank isn’t going to keep all of your devices fed all day, the most important thing is that it features pass-through charging.
If you don’t mind packing extra adapters, or you have a device that won’t accept a fast charge over the included USB-C port, then the Omni 20+ does include a perfectly functional AC outlet on the other side. This is a nice touch for the sake of compatibility, but I see a power bank like the Omni 20+ as a way to reduce clutter, so I look at the power outlet as more of a useful backup than something I want to use every day.
On the front of the power bank, next to the display, you’ll find two USB-A ports. These ports are capable of charging all your standard USB devices. One is a Qualcomm 3.0 compatible quick charge port, and the other is a standard USB port that’s capable of putting out up to 3A.
The Omni 20+ includes a 20,000 mAh battery, which is a decent capacity for the size of this power bank. I’d like to see a larger capacity based on the price of this unit, but it’s clear that you’re paying for extra features like fast USB-Charging and wireless charging instead of a big battery.
In practice, I found that the Omni 20+ wasn’t able to fully charge my HP Spectre x360, although the beefy battery and 17-hour runtime on that laptop means that I was still able to get a considerable boost from this power bank. When charging my Pixel 3, I found that I was able to get four charges out of the Omni 20+ with a little juice left over.
While this power bank isn’t going to keep all of your devices fed all day, the most important thing is that it features pass-through charging. That means you can charge the Omni 20+ while it charges or powers your devices, allowing it to function as a universal power adapter in addition to a power bank.
By plugging the Omni 20+ into power when available, I found it to be a fantastic replacement for an otherwise bulky assortment of power adapters for my laptop, phone, and other devices.
When charged over USB-C using an appropriate charger, like my Nintendo Switch charger, the Omni 20+ takes about three hours to charge to full. Charging it with a weaker charger, or over the barrel connector, takes a bit longer.
For the most part, the Omni 20+ is able to charge each device as fast as it’s designed to be charged. Older devices that charge over standard USB-A ports will draw between 1 and 3 A, depending on the device, and charge quite slowly. But if you have a Qualcomm 3.0 compatible device, you can plug it into the appropriate USB port and enjoy faster charging.
My Pixel 3 drew 1.46A when plugged into the USB-A ports, regardless of which port I chose. Other devices drew between 0.37 and 1.46A.
When plugged into the USB-C port with the included USB-C cable, I found that my Pixel 3 charged just as quickly as if I were using the factory charger. It drew 11 watts of power when plugged in via USB-C and entered its “charging rapidly” mode. I also plugged the factory charger into the included power outlet, and noticed no difference in speed.
I was also able to charge other USB-C devices, like my Nintendo Switch, with no problems.
The built-in Qi charger is capable of putting out 10 watts, and I found it to work just as well as other 10 watt Qi chargers I’ve used. It is a bit touchy in terms of positioning, but I was able to get the hang of it pretty fast.
With an MSRP of $200, Omni 20+ is a high-end battery bank with a high-end price. You get a whole lot of functionality for that price, but the device does lag behind in terms of both battery capacity and included accessories. The glaring issue is that you can find more powerful battery banks for less money, even if you won’t find one with the exact same functionality.
With an MSRP of $90, you could buy two Pilot Pro 2 battery packs for the price of a single Omni 20+. With that disparity in price, it would seem like these devices aren’t even in the same category, but they actually have some important similarities. In fact, the 23,000 mAh battery in the Pilot Pro 2 is even a bit more powerful than the Omni 20+.
The most onerous difference between these two devices is that the Pilot Pro 2 comes with a barrel connector and a nice set of adapter tips. With an MSRP almost double that of the Pilot Pro 2, it’s a bit galling that the Omni 20+ doesn’t even come with a power adapter, let alone the hardware necessary to charge your laptop.
The Omni 20+ does come out ahead in a lot of areas. It includes wireless charging, which the Pilot Pro 2 lacks. It also offers both Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 fast charging over USB-A and high wattage fast charging over USB-C, and comes with a power outlet, all of which are features that the Pilot Pro 2 lacks.
The Omni 20+ is clearly the more fully-featured of these two battery banks, so why does the much cheaper Pilot Pro 2 come with a nice assortment of accessories that Omnicharge leaves you to find on your own? The Omni 20+ is clearly the better power bank, but this kind of price tag demands a less spartan box.
Fantastic functionality, decent battery capacity, and frustrating setup experience.
The Omnicharge Omni 20+ is one of the best power banks out there, and it had better be for the price they’re asking. This is the power bank you need if you count a high wattage USB-C port, barrel connector input and output, wireless charging, and a standard power outlet among your needs. You can find cheaper power banks that provide more juice, but you won’t find one with this same feature set.