5 Best Portable and Quiet Generators for Camping in 2023

Camping in the great outdoors can be one of the most fulfilling experiences. Whether it’s spending time with friends and making lasting memories, returning to the basics, or enjoying the rush of outdoor activities, the benefits are plentiful.

However, camping is not without its challenges, especially when powering your devices for an extended period of time.

Depending on the length of your trip, party size, and preference, finding a reliable and portable generator that can keep up with your needs during your camping trips is essential for an enjoyable experience.

Whether you’re conducting research or ready to buy, look no further!

In this article, I’ve gathered the five best portable generators for camping in 2023 to help you make an informed decision and enjoy your vacation with minimal worries.

How were the five best portable camping generators chosen? 

These picks consider the most important criteria: generator size, noise levels, price, functionality, and customer reviews.

From providing power for appliances to powering smaller appliances like a phone or laptop charger, these are the top portable camping generators that will help take your camping experience to the next level. 

How do I find the best portable generator for me?

There are several factors to consider when it comes to finding the best portable generator. Below is a quick overview of each, but if you are interested in more in-depth information, you’ll find a more detailed section below.

  1. Generator type: what type of generator do you need? There are several different types, such as traditional, inverter, and solar.
  2. Size: how big of a portable generator do you need to power your appliances? The bigger the generator, the more powerful it will be. However, a larger generator can also increase noise levels, so this needs to be weighed against other factors such as price and functionality.
  3. Noise level: what type of noise pollution are you willing to tolerate? The quieter the generator, the more comfortable and peaceful your camping experience.
  4. Power: what is the power output of a portable generator? This will determine how many appliances you can use simultaneously and how much juice your devices can get.
  5. Fuel efficiency: how fuel efficient is the generator? This will determine how often you need to refuel and how much money you’ll spend on gas.
  6. Price: what type of budget can you afford? Depending on your needs, splurging on a high-end model may end up being worth it in the long run.
  7. Functionality: what type of appliances do you need to power? A portable generator with USB ports or surge protection could make all the difference when it comes to powering devices safely and efficiently. 

Which portable generator type should I get?

There are three main types of portable generators:

  1. Traditional
  2. Inverter
  3. Solar.

Standard generators are outfitted with a mechanical alternator capable of transforming direct current (DC) into alternating current (AC), ready for immediate use. Standard generators are also suitable for powering large appliances and devices but also tend to be louder with a rougher output.

Inverter generators have advanced alternators and control components that create a cleaner, more consistent voltage. This generator is ideal for powering sensitive electronic equipment like phones and laptops, as it minimizes the risk of damage due to fluctuations in energy levels.

Batteries charged by solar panels power solar generators, so they require little to no fuel and are incredibly eco-friendly. They’re also quiet and lightweight, making them great for camping trips or remote off-grid living. However, they tend to be more expensive than traditional or inverter generators.

Ultimately, the type of portable generator you choose should depend on what features are most important to you and your needs. Be sure to do your research before making a purchase.

What size should your portable generator be?

The size of your portable generator should be based on how much power you need and what type of space you have to store it.

Generally, larger generators weigh more, but they can produce more power output and are often more fuel efficient. For example, a 2000-watt inverter generator typically weighs around 50 pounds. It is suitable for powering small appliances like phones or laptop chargers, while a 10,000-watt dual-fuel generator may weigh up to 200 pounds with enough power to run an entire campsite.

In addition, consider the size and weight of your vehicle when choosing a model that best fits your needs–smaller and lighter models are ideal if you plan to move it frequently. Ultimately, the size of a portable generator can impact the power output and fuel efficiency, so do your research and find one that fits your requirements.

How loud should a portable generator be for camping?

When researching camping generators, the most important factor is noise.

No one enjoys being confined to their campsite and enduring the disruptive rumble of a generator for hours. To maintain peace and quiet, ensure that any generators you choose don’t surpass 60 decibels in noise output. This would be equivalent to two people speaking conversationally close by.

The quieter, the better, so I’ve chosen portable generators that operate at less than 60 decibels. However, if you’re open to larger generators, you might be more interested in checking out the quietest generators for camping and RVs.

How is sound measured?

The decibel (dB) is a logarithmic unit used to illustrate the power and intensity of sound waves.

As dB values rise, so does the amplitude of their corresponding soundwaves–for instance, when there’s a 3 dB increase in loudness, it indicates that the power has doubled; conversely, 10 dB expresses an amplification by tenfold!

To better illustrate how silent these portable generators are, I’ve put together a handy graphic below that will give you an idea of their sound ratings.

How powerful should a portable generator be?

Most portable generators range from a few hundred watts to 10,000 watts, and the average mid-size generator can power most camping needs. Generally, you should select a generator that puts out at least 1,500 watts for basic needs and up to 4,000 watts or more if you need to power several devices.

What type of fuel do portable generators use?

Two types of fuel are used in most portable generators: gasoline and propane. While gasoline is readily available, propane is more efficient, and its emissions are less harmful to the environment. It’s important to note that some generators are dual-fuel and can use gasoline and propane.

What about fuel efficiency?

Regarding fuel economy, inverter generators tend to be more efficient than conventional gas-powered generators. With the help of their microprocessors, inverter generators can detect and adjust the engine’s speed according to real-time power needs. This enables them to reduce fuel consumption with slight to no ‘overshoot,’ which can result in huge savings over time.

Ultimately, the best portable generator type depends on your individual needs and preferences. Be sure to consider the factors mentioned above when making your decision so that you can find a generator that is perfect for your camping needs.

What kind of functionality do I need?

When selecting the right portable generator for your camping needs, you want to ensure that it is equipped with all the necessary functionality.

Consider what kinds of devices you need to power while away from home.

Does your portable generator need to provide USB ports or electrical outlets? Do you require an electric start, safety features, noise reduction technology, or other special features?

Make sure you select a portable generator that meets all your needs and preferences to make the most out of your camping experience. Additionally, look into any additional accessories, such as cords and adapters, that will help make powering multiple devices more accessible.

How much do portable generators cost?

The price of a portable generator can vary significantly, depending on the type and size. Prices usually range from $200 to over $2,000, depending on the power output and features. Some of the most expensive portable generators also offer additional features such as noise reduction, overload protection, low oil shutoff, fuel gauge, and electric start. Remember that buying a camping generator is an investment for your outdoor adventures, so be sure to factor in these potential extras when considering different models.

What are the best portable generators for camping?

Now that you have all the information necessary to make an informed purchase, here are the best portable generators for camping that will help you power your adventure:

Top Pick – Jackery Solar Generator 1000

Jackery Solar Generator. Black with orange.
Jackery Solar Generator 1000, 1002Wh Capacity with 2x SolarSaga 100W Solar Panels, 3 x 1000W AC Outlets, Portable Power Station Ideal for Home Backup,…


Jackery Solar Generator 1000 is a lightweight, portable camping generator that can provide up to 1000 watts. It comes with two solar panels, is powered by lithium batteries, and is equipped with a 300-watt pure sine wave inverter.

This solar-powered generator offers two USB ports, one DC port, one AC outlet, and an LCD display to monitor your power usage. It also has an advanced safety system, including overload protection and low-voltage shutdown.

Top Highlights

  • Generator type: Solar
  • Price: $1274 (with Amazon voucher)
  • Noise Level: N/A
  • Power output: 1000W
  • Weight: 22 lbs / 10 kg
  • Fuel type: Solar-powered (2x solar panels included)
  • Handle: Yes
  • Dimensions: 12.5″L x 6.1″W x 9.2″H
  • Run-time: Up to 5 hours

Other Features

  • 3x AC outlet
  • 1x USB-A
  • 1x USB-A quick charge 3.0
  • 2x USB-C PD
  • 1x Car outlet
  • 1x AC Adapter
  • 1x SolarSaga Parallel Adapter
  • 1x Car Charger Cable

Price: $1274 (was $1649)

Best Suited For

The Jackery Solar Generator 1000 is ideal for camping trips, off-grid adventures, and other outdoor activities. It can provide enough power to run your electronics and appliances while on the go. Its lightweight design makes it easy to transport, making this a great choice for those who want reliable and eco-friendly power.

My Take

I chose the Jackery Solar Generator 1000 as the best portable generator for camping because it provides a reliable source of power, is the quietest generator on the list, and offers multiple power banks for all your needs. Also, using solar-powered energy is a great way to save fuel costs, reduce noise pollution, and protect the environment.

So, if you don’t need a large inverter generator or traditional generator, and you’re camping in areas that provide a good deal of sunlight. I’d go with the Jackery Solar Generator 1000. Not to mention, it looks pretty cool when you have the panels out for solar charging.

#2 Honda EU2200i Super Quiet Generator

Red honda EU2200i generator. Color is red with black trim around control panel.


The Honda EU2200i is a super quiet fuel-powered generator capable of providing 2200 watts. It has an easy one-pull start and a fuel-efficient Eco-Throttle System that adjusts engine speed to match the load.

This generator includes safety features such as overload protection, low oil shutoff, and an advanced carbon monoxide detector. It also has a convenient 120V 30A locking plug and two 120V 20A outlets for easy power access.

Interestingly, the EU2000i is Bluetooth-compatible and offers a mobile app. The My Generator app is the perfect solution to operate and monitor your generator with incredible strength remotely. Stop, start, and track its performance directly from your wireless device!

Top Highlights

  • Generator type: Inverter
  • Price: $1,199
  • Noise Level: 48dB – 57 dB
  • Power output: 2200W
  • Weight: 46.5 lbs /21.09 kg
  • Fuel type: Gasoline
  • Handle: Yes
  • Dimensions: 20″L x 16″W x 11″H
  • Fuel economy: Up to 8.1 hours

Other Features

  • 2x AC outlet
  • Bluetooth compatible
  • Overload protection
  • Low-oil auto-shutoff
  • Carbon monoxide auto-shutoff

Price: $1,199

Best Suited For

Camping trips, tailgating events, and other outdoor activities.

My Take

It’s hard to beat the Honda EU2200i regarding reliability and power. It runs quietly, has great fuel economy, and can operate for up to 8 hours on a single tank of gas. I highly recommend this portable generator for those who need reliable power while camping or tailgating. Its Bluetooth compatibility makes it even more convenient by allowing you to control the generator remotely with the My Generator app.

#3 – Generac 7127 IQ3500 3,500-Watt Gas-Powered Portable Inverter Generator

Photo of a Generac generator. Color is yellow predominantly with black trim on control panel.




The iQ3500 is a great portable inverter generator for camping. You’ll be delighted by its robust yet whisper-quiet power output that safely powers even your most sensitive electronics and tools. Not only will you love how quiet it is — it’s also incredibly lightweight and durable! It delivers an impressive amount of energy given its size while maintaining low noise levels; don’t let this portable inverter generator fool you with its silence – there’s plenty of power hidden within!

Top Highlights

  • Generator type: Inverter
  • Price: $899
  • Noise Level: 40-68dB
  • Power output: 3500 watts
  • Weight: 109.1 lbs/49.2 kg
  • Fuel type: Gasoline
  • Handle: Yes
  • Dimensions: 23.7″L x 18″W x 21.7″H
  • Fuel economy: 4.5 hours

Other Features

  • 2x AC outlet
  • 2x USB A
  • The Digital Smart LCD wattage meter offers a comprehensive set of features such as an intuitive run time remaining display, generator status monitoring, hour meter, and fuel level indication
  • With its multiple USB ports on board, you can conveniently charge mobile devices like smartphones and tablets in one spot!
  • The Electric Start with Power Dial provides three operation settings (Start/Run/Stop) integrated into a simple dial control – battery included for your convenience.

Price: $899

Best Suited For

Campers needing a dependable and ultra-quiet portable inverter generator while camping or out on the road should consider investing in the Generac. It’s an all-around quiet camping generator that packs a punch and provides a source of reliable power.

My Take

If you want to keep your camping trip peaceful and operate a camping generator late into the night without any disturbances, then Generac 7127 IQ3500 is probably for you. While it’s not the quietest generator on the list, it is much quieter than other generators. So, if you’re looking for a quiet camping generator that provides mobility and can even be used for your home in the case of a power outage, I’d recommend the Generac for that reason alone.

This model is powerful enough for refrigerators or ovens, but it’s also great for sensitive electronics. Additionally, this portable camping generator features an electric start, so you can turn it on without hassle. Moreover, its easy-to-read LCD screen helps to keep you informed of your generator’s performance, ensuring that everything runs smoothly!

With Generac, you are guaranteed quality for your money. Their models come with a dependable engine that won’t require costly repairs. Not to mention, it’s got more power than other gas-powered generators of similar size.

For only $999 this camping generator is an unbeatable deal.

#4 – WEN 56380i Super Quiet 3800-Watt Portable Inverter Generator


The WEN 3,800 Watt Inverter Generator offers a quiet solution for your energy needs. Its 212cc 4-stroke air-cooled OHV engine produces up to 3800 surge watts and 3400 rated watts of clean power. And don’t worry about the noise – this powerful gas-powered generator operates at only 57 decibels at a quarter load, comparable with an average conversation or window AC unit! Enjoy uninterrupted use while camping, tailgating, or restoring backup power without being intrusive.

Top Highlights

  • Generator type: Inverter
  • Price: $642.99
  • Noise Level: 51dB
  • Power output: 3800 watts
  • Weight: 99.2 lbs/44.9 kg
  • Fuel type: Gasoline
  • Handle: Yes
  • Dimensions: 23.2″ L x 18″ W x 20.1″ H
  • Fuel economy: 8.5 hours per fillup

Other Features

  • Fuel shutoff maximizes the generator’s lifespan by using up the remaining fuel in the carburetor before shutting down
  • 2x three-prong 120V receptacles
  • 1x AC 120V NEMA TT-30R RV receptacle
  • 1x 12V DC receptacle
  • 2x 5V USB ports
  • Digital load and fuel display
  • 2-year warranty

Price: $642.99

Best Suited For

Its price point and versatility make it a great camping generator for hobbyists and those new to camping. Its auto-shutdown feature makes it a forgiving option for those new to using portable generators. You can use it for many other activities, but it’s a reliable generator that you can take on the road and should last a long time, so long as you follow proper maintenance and care procedures. It’s also one of the quietest generators on the list.

My Take

If you’re not going camping often and are just looking for an inverter generator that will do the job, the WEN 3,800 Watt Inverter is for you. It offers a ton of USB ports and places for plugs, and you can keep it running overnight without worrying about it causing damage to your unit, plus, the two-year warranty is bound to give any amateur camper piece of mind!

#5 – maXpeedingrods 3500W Portable Inverter Generator


maXpeedingrods 3500W Portable Inverter Generator is an affordable option to round off the list of camping generators. While it doesn’t have as much power, run time, and versatility in terms of inputs as some of the other generators, it’s still a great choice if you’re looking for a portable inverter generator that won’t break the bank. 

Top Highlights 

  • Generator type: Inverter
  • Price: $699
  • Noise Level: 58dB
  • Power output: 3500 watts
  • Weight: 47 lbs/2 1kg
  • Fuel type: Gasoline
  • Handle: Yes
  • Dimensions: 18.9″L x 11.4″W x 17.3″H
  • Fuel economy: 8 hours per fillup

Other Features 

  • 1 x 120V 30 amp RV outlet
  • 2 x 120V 20 amp outlets
  • 2 x 5V DC USB outlets
  • Eco mode

Price: $599 (was $699.99)

Best Suited For

Hobbyists, beginners, and intermediate-level RVers and campers. Its lower price point makes it an attractive generator for those just getting started. 

My Take

This sleek inverter generator is affordable but lacks an hour meter, making it difficult to know when to service it. Another downside is that there is no warranty, so if something happens to it, it’s on you to replace it. According to reviews, customer service seems incredible at resolving issues, but spending a bit more for peace of mind might be worth it. 

Wrap Up

In conclusion, various portable solar and gas generators can fit any budget and power needs. Ultimately, each portable generator has its own benefits and drawbacks, so it’s up to you to decide which one best fits your needs.

  1. The Jackery Solar Generator 1000 is an ideal portable generator for camping trips and outdoor activities, as it offers clean energy with no emissions.
  2. The Honda EU2200i is excellent for recreational use, providing quiet operation and fuel efficiency.
  3. The Generac 7127 iQ3500 is very versatile with its multiple outlets and digital display.
  4. The WEN 56380i Super Quiet Generator is excellent for beginners due to its auto-shutdown feature and two-year warranty.
  5. Lastly, the maXpeedingrods 3500W Portable Inverter Generator is an excellent option for hobbyists and those on a budget, as it offers a multipurpose power supply and a long run time.

Every model on this list is a fantastic generator for camping, so you can’t go wrong with any of these!

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