Hi all,

I recently purchased a portable power station capable of 500 watt hours. The track lighting I currently have is not sufficient for properly lighting the booth (outside tent, Flourish canopy, gray propanels). Any suggestions on lighting options? I'm basically looking for the strongest lighting that is compatible with the portable power station. And any other suggestions are very welcome. Thank you in advance!


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  • Use LED lights. A 14 watt LED light is equivalent to a 100 watt conventional light. I use LED work lights that the handles and feet have been removed, and zip tie them with the remaining bracket into the ceiling of the tent. If you use a pop-up tent zip tie to the cross struts, and if using a Trimline add an extra pole about a foor beneath the ceiling bar and zip tie to that. I can get by by 4 lights but prefer 6 to really make the back wall/corners pop. I can get 8 hours with a 500 watt power station using 4 lights, about 6 hours with 6 lights. 

    I'm using PowerSmith PWL1115BS shop lights, but the price of those has doubled since I first bought mine. I would do an Amazon search for LED shop lights and see what's newer and cheaper. Mine are in cast aluminum housings and pretty rugged. Cost cutting would include ABS or lexan housings to lower cost, and still be suitable for your purposes. The key thing is look for 1200-1500 lumens to keep power consumption down, and 500-5500 kelvin color temp so it is daylight balanced.

    Another possibility is articulated desk lamps.Most have a 32" reach and the bases will fit inside the pipes used by Propanels. These you would use 100 watt equivalent daylight balance conventional LED lights.

    I've got a 500 watt power station and it's barely adequate. I sprung for a 1000 watt power station, different brand, cost $550 and a total bust with the manufacturer not standing behind it. I'm going back to using two large 125 A/H boat batteries with an inverter and not worrying about running out of pwer or having to take the power station back to the motel for recharging overnight. Yeah, they're heavy at 75 pounds each, but that's what dollies and carts are made for. The two boat batteries paralleled to each other gives me 3000 watt hours.


  • I've used two sets of track lighting (three lights on each) - both attached at the front of my tent and pointing inside - for years with great success. You can pick them up for ~$40 a piece at any big box hardware store. But I power them off a deep cell marine battery connected to an inverter. That might be the difference.


    500 watts is not much when it comes to powering a lighting system for your booth. Might be ok to keep your phone or laptop charged during the day...or power your CC reader etc. 

    Simply put @100% efficiency you could run 5 -- 100watt lite bulbs for 1 hour.  
    if you could find adequate LEDs for your needs you might be able to power them for several hours. 
    To calculate power consumption. Battery Capacity = ( Total Load In Watts X Usage time ) / (Input voltage X efficiency %)

    It can get a bit complicated & confusing. But to experiment on your own, just plug in an item you wish to use ( or two or four), and see how long they stay useful. 


    good luck. 

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