The current edition of industry bible “Photon Magazine” (June 2012 issue) has a glowing review of the Chinese made Samil Power Solar Lake 15kW inverter.
A couple of years ago if you were investing in a 15kW solar system your default choice would have been a European inverter – think SMA, Aurora or Delta. It would have been a very brave engineer that specced a Chinese inverter on such a big system!
However in a few short years the Chinese have learned from any mistakes made and are producing some world class solar inverter hardware.
But the think that made me chuckle was the first paragraph of the solar inverter review:
“Samil Power Co Ltd is gradually evolving into the Hyundai of the inverter sector. Wheras the South Korean automaker was initially known for its low prices and low quality, it now produces cars equal to those of Volkswagen. Similarly, China based inverter manufacturer Samil is slowly catching up with the big players in the industry”
Which got me thinking – if Samil = Hyundai, what about the other Solar Inverter manufacturers?
SMA -> Mercedes – Expensive, Reliable, German Made, Safe, Some people think there aren’t worth the extra cash. ( I think they are) Long and proud history
Aurora -> Ford – Big company behind it, good quality, good warranty and service backup, good value, but not the cheapest, a low risk buy. Popular in continental europe.
Delta -> Volvo – Built like a tank, looks like a tank, will outlast a thermonuclear war, great performance in extreme conditions, European company.
Enecsys -> Tesla Motors – Futuristic, expensive, game changing, lusted over by early adopters and geeks, awesome performance.
Samil Power -> Hyundai – Used to be horrible – now pretty damn good – have imitated the european manufacturers’ best features, great value.
Growatt -> Nissan - mid range – have improved a lot in recent years and look pretty nice these days too.
Aerosharp -> Daewoo – Low end, lots of failures - can you even buy them any more?
Sunny Roo -> Leyland P76 – Australian developed – can’t get it any more.