Outback Radian versus FXR series?

Lost_One

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May 13, 2022
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As I poke around and try to re-educate myself, I seem to have move questions then answers at this point, but i am getting there. Brief back story, I have a 4.5 kW system based on Enphase m215 micros. My goal is it add some additional power in the range of 1.5 - 2 kW and have some off-grid power that I can still tie into the grid.
With my first intro post, I was recommend to check out the Schneider pros and they offer what looks to be some good options, but for my current budget I would think the CX4048. I also have been looking at the Outback Radian and the FXR inverters ( leaning towards 48V ). It seems that the FXR are just a 120V, where a Radian can do a split phase 120/240V? Am I getting that right? Being that I am looking at adding on a bit more power and having an off-grid option in an event of an extended power outage, do I need 240? I am currently thinking I just needing to keep a fridge / freezer, microwave, some lights, and possibly a 3/4 hp motor ( heating and evap cooler) going so this is that fine to have 120V only? Then if I with to expand more, I can add an additional FXR for 240V and higher output, correct? Is there any benefit of this over the Radian?
I do understand that I still have a lot of homework on my load needs, but I will get there.

Regards
 

MichaelK

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Mar 21, 2020
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With my first intro post, I was recommend to check out the Schneider pros and they offer what looks to be some good options, but for my current budget I would think the CX4048. I also have been looking at the Outback Radian and the FXR inverters ( leaning towards 48V ). It seems that the FXR are just a 120V, where a Radian can do a split phase 120/240V? Am I getting that right? Being that I am looking at adding on a bit more power and having an off-grid option in an event of an extended power outage, do I need 240?
The Radian is a native 120V/240V split-phase inverter, however, the 120V VFXR series can be wired in parallel to make split-phase 120/240V. But, the VFXR is a bit more than 1/2 the price of a Radian, so you'd spend a bit less money on one Radian instead of two VFXRs?

I see the most compelling reason to have split-phase is to power a 240V well pump. Other 240V appliances, like stoves and water heaters, are better served being powered by propane/gas. Most likely you can get by with just a 3600W inverter if you don't have many serious power needs, but I really can't tell you what your needs will be? That's up to you.

Maybe the best option for you might be to start with a single 120V inverter, see how your lifestyle adapts to it, and decide later if you need to upgrade to a parallel pair. Be careful though. For my workshop, I started out with a single Conext 4024, which has worked well for me, but I originally purchased it with the thought I might some day parallel it with another unit. After 2020, the parallel option was dropped from the Conext line, so that option is now gone.
 

newbostonconst

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Sep 24, 2019
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The Radian can AC couple to compatible micro inverters with free firmware upgrade on the A model (can DC couple also). The increase use of electric cars may push you to want 240vac even though you might not have a use right now.

I have a GS4048 now and works good.
 

Lost_One

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120V VFXR series can be wired in parallel to make split-phase 120/240V. But, the VFXR is a bit more than 1/2 the price of a Radian
This is what I too was thinking, and really had me wonder if there were more to it than what I could see on the spec sheet? I see the benefit of the 2 would be about 50% more power output then the radian but was not sure of other 'you don't know what you don't know'. I will have to see if the FXR are field serviceable like the Radians are.
After 2020, the parallel option was dropped from the Conext line, so that option is now gone
... and this is what bugs me about buy a little here then upgrade later. You run the risk of losing features or backwards compatability
 

Lost_One

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The increase use of electric cars may push you to want 240vac
This was the motivation for me to add to my system. Being that I want to all have some off grid capabilities, mostly to keep food from going bad, I shutter thinking how many panel are needed to charge a long range EV :)
 

newbostonconst

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This was the motivation for me to add to my system. Being that I want to all have some off grid capabilities, mostly to keep food from going bad, I shutter thinking how many panel are needed to charge a long range EV :)
I use 25 kwh a day to drive 56 miles....25kwh divided by 5 hours of sun is 5wh is needed if it goes right into the battery or you need storage or net metering.
 

MichaelK

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Mar 21, 2020
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This was the motivation for me to add to my system. Being that I want to all have some off grid capabilities, mostly to keep food from going bad, I shutter thinking how many panel are needed to charge a long range EV :)
There are three standards for charging right now. Level 1: 12A at 120VAC, 1440W; level 2: 10-50A at 240VAC; level 3: 480VDC.

My system could do level 1 from 7:30AM till 4:30PM, and 10A at level 2 from 8:30AM to 3:30PM. I'd say that level three charging is outside of the realm of 99% of solar enthusiasts.

With rotating mounts, I say single-day charging is doable with ~5000W of solar, if you work at night. If you drive home at 5pm, and want to plug in the car, then no, it's not going to work unless you want to totally drain your house battery.
 

Ampster

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To AC couple to the micros you would need a split phase system. The best value in a true grid interactive inverter might be the Outback Skybox. It is an All In One inverter, so you don't need to buy charge controller or the Mate console.
 
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