Solar Panels: Mono vs Poly – Real World Test – Worth the $$?

Solar panels I recommend:

Does off-grid solar confuse you? Check out my DIY friendly website for solar system blueprints, recommended components and much more!

Join our DIY solar community! #1 largest solar forum on the internet for beginners and professionals alike:

Check out my international best-selling 12V off-grid solar book (Amazon affiliate link):

Coupon codes and solar distributors I recommend:

-Rich Solar: No coupon code needed here because they have the lowest prices around. High quality solar equipment and solar generators: Megasite! They have everything you need to build any size system (
10% off code: WillProwse (
10% off code: diysolar

-Watts 24/7: Best deals on all-in-one solar power systems, with customer support and distribution here in the USA:

-Signature Solar: Great deals on large solar panels in bulk and server mounted LiFePO4 packs:

-Practical Preppers: DC Mini Split Air Conditioners and Sol Ark Inverters! If you want the best of the best, find it here:

My solar equipment recommendations (Constantly updated, unlike my videos! Check here first):

Plug-n-play Lithium Batteries:

Solar Panels:

DIY LiFePO4 Batteries:

Raw LiFePO4 Battery Cells:


Off grid Inverters:

LiFePO4 Battery Chargers:

Solar Charge Controllers:

Solar Panel Mounting Guide:


Battery Monitors:

Favorite Tools:

12V fridges:

-DIY Solar System Packages-

Plug and Play Systems:

400W Starter System:

400W Starter System w/ Alternator Charging:

800W System:

DIY LiFePO4 System Design:

Contact Information:
I am NOT available for personal solar system consult! No exceptions! All emails asking me to design or help with building your system will be deleted. If you are a business or youtuber and wish to contact me, this is my direct email:

Join the forum at if you wish to hang out with myself and others and talk about solar

Affiliate information and disclaimers:
Every video includes some form of paid promotion or sponsorship. Links in description are affiliate links. My videos are for educational purpose only. Information is subject to change/update at anytime. Electricity is DANGEROUS and can kill. Be smart and use common sense 🙂

DIY Solar Power with Will Prowse is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program,
An affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to
FTC Disclosure Statement:
Some links on this youtube channel may be affiliate links. We may get paid if you buy something or take an action after clicking one of these.


  1. Your videos are always spot on! I discovered the ‘truth’ about polycrystalline panels about a year ago. Your videos are spot on and devoid of so much BS seen everywhere else. Bought your book and reference it all the time. It’s hard to believe but your writing is actually better than your videos. Your ‘shameless’ endorsement of your own book (I love it!) is not bragging if it’s the truth! (I left a review six months ago). Keep up the good work.

  2. What is the model number for the HQST? Im searching on amazon and there are 2 HQST 100w poly panels. HQST100-P and HSP100P-L, they both have very similar specs, but the HSP100P-L is heavier by 1.35lbs. On HQST website it has “(new)” added to the description so I assume that one is the newer model? Have you done any comparisons between them?

  3. Beyond the price, Anyone else notice the surface area differences? Mono uses roughly 25% less space tan the Poly of when turned around the Poly used 33% More Space than the Mono. Take the first readings he gives and for Area of Coverage Mono is more efficient but the cost vs resource leans towards the Poly. They are cheaper but take up more space. IF space isn't an issue for you then go Cheap. But if you are trying to Maximize output according to you coverage area then go Mono. In a metaphorical comparison — It's like trying to Compare backyard gardening to mass farming. You are not gonna go and buy a big tractor to harvest carrots from a raised bed.

  4. I ordered an HQST from Amazon based upon your recommendation, but it was received severely damaged (FedEx). My solar plans are set back until I can figure out how to move forward.

  5. Great comparison video I did buy your book and it's great I went with your favorite mppt charge controller by epever the 40 amp aluminum one tits great

  6. What about in lowlight? If Mono is better in lowlight, maybe it's fair to repeat the test on a cloudy day?

    Because if the mono produces more energy in low light, the it would be way better for on top of a campervan. 👍🏻

  7. Awesome video as always! I am a older person. Planning on putting solar on a not yet purchased 22-24 rv trailer. Could you recommend a good system to put together for extra 12 volt off grid camping. I was just looking at the Battle Born battery packages.I noticed they sale the Victron unit you evaluated in this video. Thanks

  8. Another great video! I was planning on buying four more Renogy 100 Watt monocrystalline panels next month but I think I will order four of the Rich Solar poly panels instead!

  9. Thanks for the video! Very useful. The only thing I would change is to measure all the panels at the same time. This way is much accurate in a hazy day.

  10. Have the new 100w renogy panels installed. I ran the battery down to 11.4v (sla) and then connected the two solar panels. My meter does indicate that it is charging, but only shows about 6 or 7 watts. I check the VOC for each panel, and got 18.57 on one and 19.32 on the other. Shouldnt I be seeing more wattage? And if so, why am I not

  11. Will….

    We appreciate you more than you know. At 48 years old, engineering background, I have been researching solar system setups for quite some time now. Your videos and other information sources are without a doubt the most reliable and truly informational.

    Thank you for trustworthy advice and sharing of knowledge that helps to teach others

  12. i recently picked up the hqst, it was only 3 bucks more than the rich solar poly panel, and more importantly was in stock. i'd be interested in seeing a test like this 5-10 years down the line as I've heard mono has less degradation?? but im no expert

  13. If I am not mistaken. But poly is better in warm climate. And mono. Are better in cool weather. If I am wrong please explain

  14. So Will-what do I know, BUT would the increased SURFACE AREA of the Poly panels account for the higher output? If so, this says nothing about Poly vs Mono. Only that bigger is bigger.

  15. Mono is more efficient. Count the number of cells and you will see the mono panels have less of them. If they were of Equal Size the Mono panels would far exceed the Poly panels
    Poly would be good if you have lots of space to mount them but if you are restrained on the amount of space you are using such as a camper van, mono would be better because you can stack two pf them side by side and they would only be slightly bigger than one single Poly.

  16. I want to purchase book two questions please?

    Does it have 24 volt and 48 volt system configuration?

    If so is it fairly up to date and if not what would you add or include? Thank you

  17. I got this book off Amazon. It has become my Bible of Solar knowledge. I knew nothing about solar before I bought the book. Now I'm an Einstein of solar. Not really, but I love the book, it will answer all my questions as I ask them. I highly recommend it.

  18. I upvoted just for that hat. Why no link for it? I smell a scandal … was it given to you as a bribe? Hmmmmm…

  19. Your videos (and you book on Solar) …. so so helpful! Excellent😀 Glad you tested & shed some light on the difference between mono and poly output, cost, build and The brackets for mounting🌞

  20. I'm pretty confused right now. Why exactly would there be a widespread lie that monocrystalline is better?? I don't get it

  21. Polychrystaline works better than Mono when the panel experiences part shading or (not the same amount of sun per cell..)

  22. Have I got the following wrong? The watts per square inch seem to be about the same (ie 70 watts/1046 sq inch = 0.0669 w/sq inch and 57 watts/ 819 sq inch = 0.0696 w/sq inch). The smaller panels make the same amount of power per square inch of area, it's just that the smaller panels give you less surface area per dollar.

  23. i would like to see how poly does against mono in overcast, as i saw shadows on the ground in this video during the test. i am very satisfied with the poly performance in completely clear skies. i got 398watts from 4 panels wired in series over a 60 foot 16 gauge cable in mid march nothern indiana clear skies, seems to hover around 360-370 which is 90-92.5 watts per panel. but over cast is bad like really bad, maybe 50 watts out of 400 possible. i have several mono panels and i will be comparing them soon in over cast to my poly real soon, but i dont remember mono being that bad. anyways great info as always, i have learned a great deal from this channel.

  24. thank you for your videos i am buying a grand Design momentum fifth wheel and want to put a 2500W solar package on it. Is your book cover these packages or your web site? or both. learned tons from you and fell i can tackle installation on my own if i have info.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.