The Yamaha EF2000iS inverter provides a stable current that's safe for electronics, but not a lot of it, offering just 1,600 watts continuous or 2,000 peak wattage. For extra power, you can daisy-chain two of these inverters together. In comparison to the Honda EU2000i (Est. $1,000) , editors at CampingLife.com say the "Yamaha offers a little more for your money when it comes to buying portable power."
Clean, stable power. With a continuous rating of just 1,600 watts and a peak or surge rating of 2,000 watts, the Yamaha EF2000iS is best for powering just the essentials. You can, however, daisy-chain two units together to net more power. The EF2000iS comes with only the basic plug-ins you'd expect from an inverter of this size: two 5-20R AC outlets and a single DC outlet. "Yamaha was the only generator in our test with a fuel petcock, which meant we could turn off fuel flow to the carburetor," say editors at CampingLife.com.
Very fuel-efficient. In a comparative test, CampingLife.com editors call the Yamaha EF2000iS "just as smooth and more fuel-efficient than the Honda [EU2000i]." The manufacturer estimates 10.5 hours of run time at one-quarter load, from a 1.1-gallon tank of gas. One owner posts similar results at ElectricGeneratorsDirect.com, saying he got about seven hours of run time while using this inverter at more than a quarter of its capacity. Because the EF2000iS doesn't have an electric start, you'll need to yank a rip cord to get it going. However, most owners say they don't mind because it almost always starts on the first pull. The editors of CampingLife.com praise Yamaha's simple starting process. It comes with a 500-hour emission compliance guarantee, double or more than that of some competitors.
Quieter than a microwave. The editors of CampingLife.com say the Yamaha EF2000iS is a little quieter at idle than its competitors in one comparative test, with several reviewers adding that you can still talk normally. "During heavy load it does ramp up and is significantly louder but still tolerable," says one owner at Amazon.com. "The Yamaha had a wide fuel neck, making refueling easy, and it had a built-in fuel gauge (the only one in this test so equipped)," say editors at CampingLife.com. Most are impressed with its design and quality, and Popular Mechanics calls it "indestructible."
1. Camping Life Magazine
CampingLife.com tests and compares three portable inverter generators: the Generac iX2000, the Yamaha EF2000iS and the Honda EU2000i. Reviewers connect each generator to appliances to assess operating smoothness, noise level and fuel consumption. They also consider weight and ease of use. Although this review lists pros and cons for each model, the Yamaha is singled out as the best value.
Review: Editors of CampingLife.com, Portable Power, June 2, 2011
2. Popular Mechanics
In a comparison test of four light-duty portable generators, the Yamaha EF2000iS gets second place, rating just under the Honda EU2000i. Editors praise its sturdy design, calling it "indestructible," but say the two screws holding the engine cover are awkward to remove.
Review: Which Small Generator Is the Toughest?, Roy Berendsohn, Not Dated
3. Electric Generators Direct.com
Product experts here give this generator an A-plus rating, recommending it over the Honda EU2000i and saying it's the only generator with a 500-hour engine life. Almost all of the 120 owners reviewing the EF2000iS recommend it, calling it easy to use, high quality and quiet.
Review: Yamaha EF2000iS - 1600 Watt Inverter Generator, Contributors to ElectricGeneratorsDirect.com, As of February 2014
About 90 owners post reviews of the Yamaha EF2000iS, giving it an average rating of 4.6 stars out of 5. Many praise the Yamaha's ease of use and how quiet it is. It's strong enough for most, but a few say it didn't provide the amount of power they wanted.
Review: Yamaha EF2000iS Portable Generator, Contributors to Cabelas.com, As of February 2014