The Canadian Solar All-Black is a uniformly black monocrystalline PERC residential solar panel with an aesthetically beautiful design. These popular modules provide up to 370 W and 405 W and reach an efficiency of 20.7%, making them some of the most powerful panels for domestic solar projects.

If you plan on going solar, you should never compromise on your choice of modules. These are the components of the photovoltaic system that’ll be on your rooftop and exposed to the elements, so only high-quality panels can guarantee that your system will continue to generate electricity for decades.

The All-Black modules are manufactured by industry stalwarts Canadian Solar. They are touted as some of the best solar panels in terms of performance and reliability. But is this All-Black module a high-quality solar panel or just riding on Canadian Solar’s reputation?

This detailed review of the Canadian Solar All-Black will answer this question by examining its cost, specifications, features, and more.

After reading this article, you’ll exactly know if this solar panel is right for you.

Let’s dive straight in!

What is the Canadian Solar All-Black? 

The All-Black is a high-power monocrystalline PERC module from the Canadian Solar.

The Chinese-produced All-Black was launched in 2015 and is an aesthetically pleasing solar panel with a matching black frame, back sheet, and cells.

There are different models of the Canadian Solar All-Black PV module. Some of the most popular All-Black modules are part of the company’s HiKu series – the CS3L-M All-Black and the CS6R-M All-Black

Both All-Blacks are for residential applications and offer diverse choices for your home solar installation. The CS3L All-Black has an electrical output of up to 370 W, while the CS6R output can provide up to 405 W

Canadian Solar All-Black Solar Panel Range 

The CS3L All Black is available in five power classes with 120 dual cells, while the CS6R All-Black is available in six power classes with 108 dual cells.

The Model ID for each unit is provided below:

CS3L All-BlackCS6R All-Black
CS3L-350MS, CS3L-355MS, CS3L-360MS, CS3L-365MS, CS3L-370MS.CS6R-380MS, CS6R-385MS, CS6R-390MS, CS6R-395MS, CS6R-400MS, CS6R-405MS.

Canadian Solar All-Black Solar Panel Cost

While your purchasing decision shouldn’t be based solely on the solar panel cost, it always helps to know the range you can expect to pay.

The price of the Canadian Solar All-Black depends on the particular solar retailer you use. However, on the average, it should cost you as follows:

CS3L All-Black Model IDCost
CS3L-350MS$170 – $200
CS3L-355MS$190 – $220
CS3L-360MS$200 – $240
CS3L-365MS$220 – $250
CS3L-370MS$240 – $280

CS6R All-Black Model ID
Cost
CS6R-380MS$250 – $280
CS6R-385MS$260 – $300
CS6R-390MS$280 – $320
CS6R-395MS$300 – $350
CS6R-400MS$320 – $370
CS6R-405MS$390 – $420

Canadian Solar All-Black Solar Panel Technical Specifications

The All-Black models are some of the best solar panels on the market, as evidenced from their datasheets below: 

CS3L All-Black Technical Specification

Model ID350MS355MS360MS365MS370MS
Nominal Max. Power (Pmax)350 W355 W360 W365 W370 W
Opt. Operating Voltage (Vmp)33.3 V33.5 V33.7 V33.9 V34.1 V
Opt. Operating Current (Imp)10.52 A10.61 A10.69 A10.78 A10.86 A
Open Circuit Voltage (Voc)40.0 V40.2 V40.4 V40.6 V40.8 V
Short Circuit Current (Isc)11.28 A11.33 A11.40 A11.47 A11.54 A
Module Efficiency 18.9%19.2%19.5%19.720.0%
Operating Temperature-40 °C to +85 °C-40 °C to +85 °C-40 °C to +85 °C-40 °C to +85 °C-40 °C to +85 °C
Application ClassificationClass AClass AClass AClass AClass A
Power Tolerance0 to +10 W0 to +10 W0 to +10 W0 to +10 W0 to +10 W
Solar Cell TypeMonocrystallineMonocrystallineMonocrystallineMonocrystallineMonocrystalline
Dimension1,765 x 1,048 x 35 mm
(69.5 x 41.3 x 1.38 in)
1,765 x 1,048 x 35 mm
(69.5 x 41.3 x 1.38 in)
1,765 x 1,048 x 35 mm
(69.5 x 41.3 x 1.38 in)
1,765 x 1,048 x 35 mm
(69.5 x 41.3 x 1.38 in)
1,765 x 1,048 x 35 mm
(69.5 x 41.3 x 1.38 in)
Weight20.5 kg (45.2 lbs)20.5 kg (45.2 lbs)20.5 kg (45.2 lbs)20.5 kg (45.2 lbs)20.5 kg (45.2 lbs)
Front Cover3.2 mm tempered glass with anti-reflective coating3.2 mm tempered glass with anti-reflective coating3.2 mm tempered glass with anti-reflective coating3.2 mm tempered glass with anti-reflective coating3.2 mm tempered glass with anti-reflective coating
FrameAnodised aluminium alloyAnodised aluminium alloyAnodised aluminium alloyAnodised aluminium alloyAnodised aluminium alloy
J-BoxesIP68, three bypass diodesIP68, three bypass diodesIP68, three bypass diodesIP68, three bypass diodesIP68, three bypass diodes

CS6R All-Black Technical Specifications

Model ID380MS385MS390MS395MS400MS405MS
Nominal Max. Power (Pmax)380 W385 W390 W395 W400 W405 W
Opt. Operating Voltage (Vmp)30.0 V30.2 V30.4 V30.6 V30.8 V31.0 V
Opt. Operating Current (Imp)12.69 A12.77 A12.84 A12.91 A12.99 A13.07 A
Open Circuit Voltage (Voc)36.0 V36.2 V36.4 V36.6 V36.8 V37.0 V
Short Circuit Current (Isc)13.55 A13.63 A13.70 A13.77 A13.85 A13.93 A
Module Efficiency 19.5%19.7%20.0%20.2%20.5%20.7%
Operating Temperature-40 °C to +85 °C-40 °C to +85 °C-40 °C to +85 °C-40 °C to +85 °C-40 °C to +85 °C-40 °C to +85 °C
Application ClassificationClass AClass AClass AClass AClass AClass A
Power Tolerance0 to +10 W0 to +10 W0 to +10 W0 to +10 W0 to +10 W0 to +10 W
Solar Cell TypeMono-crystallineMono-crystallineMono-crystallineMono-crystallineMono-crystallineMono-crystalline
Dimensions1722 x 1134 x 30 mm (67.8 x 44.6 x 1.18 in)1722 x 1134 x 30 mm (67.8 x 44.6 x 1.18 in)1722 x 1134 x 30 mm (67.8 x 44.6 x 1.18 in)1722 x 1134 x 30 mm (67.8 x 44.6 x 1.18 in)1722 x 1134 x 30 mm (67.8 x 44.6 x 1.18 in)1722 x 1134 x 30 mm (67.8 x 44.6 x 1.18 in)
Weight21.3 kg (47.0 lbs)21.3 kg (47.0 lbs)21.3 kg (47.0 lbs)21.3 kg (47.0 lbs)21.3 kg (47.0 lbs)21.3 kg (47.0 lbs)
Front Cover3.2 mm tempered glass with anti-reflective coating3.2 mm tempered glass with anti-reflective coating3.2 mm tempered glass with anti-reflective coating3.2 mm tempered glass with anti-reflective coating3.2 mm tempered glass with anti-reflective coating3.2 mm tempered glass with anti-reflective coating
FrameAnodised aluminium alloyAnodised aluminium alloyAnodised aluminium alloyAnodised aluminium alloyAnodised aluminium alloyAnodised aluminium alloy
J-BoxesIP68, three bypass diodesIP68, three bypass diodesIP68, three bypass diodesIP68, three bypass diodesIP68, three bypass diodesIP68, three bypass diodes

What is the Solar Panel’s Power Output?

The All-Black are high-power residential solar panels. The CS3L models have a power output of 350 W – 370 W, while the CS6R models provide you with 380 W – 405 W.

Residential solar panels usually have power ratings of 250 W – 400 W, with many peaking at 340 W. When you compare their output with this metric, the All-Black modules are clearly some of the most powerful for residential applications.

These modules generate more electricity than their low-power counterparts. Their impressive power also means you’ll need fewer solar panels when installing a solar system.

For example, when using the high-power 340 W modules of other solar manufacturers, you’ll require 19 panels to install the 6.6kW solar system that is popular amongst Australian homeowners.

But if you utilise the 370 W rated CS3L All-Black, you’ll only need 17 panels, and when using the 405 W rated CS6R All-Black, you’ll only require 16 panels.

What is the Canadian Solar All Black’s Efficiency?

As residential solar panels go, the Canadian Solar All-Black modules are certainly high yielders. The efficiency of the CS3L All-Black models ranges from 18.9% to 20%, while the CS6R models vary from 19.5% to 20.7%.

Module efficiency is the amount of sunlight that falls on a solar module and is converted to electricity. Most solar panels have a conversion efficiency of 15% and 18%. So, those that exceed 19% are considered highly efficient.

What is the All-Black Solar Panel’s Temperature Coefficient? Will it Perform Well in Australian Weather?

The Canadian Solar All-Black solar panels have a temperature coefficient of -0.34% / °C.

When the temperature of solar panels increases over 25 °C, electricity production falls. The temperature coefficient measures the drop in efficiency as the temperature rises above 25 °C.

Simply put, this means that for every 1 °C rise in temperature above 25 °C, the conversion efficiency of the solar panels will drop by 0.34%. This is relatively low (which is positive). It’s not uncommon to find some of the best solar panels with a temperature coefficient of about -0.40% / °C.

The Canadian Solar All-Black module performs capably in Australian weather. No matter where you are in the country, or the time of year, the All-Black solar panels will work perfectly in your solar PV system, helping you generate your own electricity.

This is because the temperature in Australia all year round is within All Black’s operating temperature. The operating temperature of the All-Black modules is -40 to +85 °C, while the temperature in Australia ranges from +0.1 – +33.3 °C.

For further illustration, you can view the temperature range across major Australian cities below:

The temperature of Australia’s capital cities (Source: Australia.com).

The temperature in some parts of Australia can sometimes exceed 25 °C. Despite that, your All-Black solar panels won’t suffer a significant efficiency drop due to their relatively low temperature coefficient.

What is the Canadian Solar All-Black Solar Panels’ Country of Origin?

Many people ask whether Canadian Solar is a Chinese company. Well, as its name implies, the company is registered in Canada. It operates two manufacturing facilities in Ontario. 

So, what is the Chinese connection? There are several reasons for this.

  • First, Canadian Solar was founded and owned by a Chinese engineer – Shawn Qu.
  • Second, the company has approximately 20 manufacturing facilities, most of which are located in China.

So, while Canada Solar is a Canadian company, the majority of its solar panels are manufactured in Chinese cities.

Will the Canadian Solar All-Black Solar Panel Look Good on My Home’s Roof?

Absolutely! One of the biggest selling points of the All-Black modules is their stunning appearance on rooftops.

The all-black modules have jet-black frames and back sheets, giving them a uniform look when sitting on your rooftop. If you have a black roof, the modules blend with the colour effortlessly, and you’d be hard-pressed to notice them from a distance. 

Canadian Solar All-Black Solar Panel Key Features

Canadian Solar All-Black modules have an array of great features that make them the perfect choice for your rooftop solar system. 

  • Jet-black appearance. The All-black solar panels have a uniform black colour that will be very sleek on your roof. 
  • Monocrystalline cells. Monocrystalline cells are made from a single silicon crystal. The others are polycrystalline panels (cells made from multiple silicon crystals melted together) and thin-film panels (cells made from different materials, including silicon). The pure formatting of monocrystalline cells makes them the most efficient.
  • Dual cells for better yield and lower hotspot temperature. Dual (twin) cell technology cuts the solar cells in half, doubling the number of cells in the PV module. The CS3L module has 120 cells, whereas a traditional module has 60. The CS6R has 108 cells, while a conventional module has 54. Doubling the cells reduces resistive losses, improving energy conversion. It also reduces the internal current in the cells. If shading causes current to concentrate on particular solar cells, the cells are less likely to overheat, melt, or crack.
  • PERC cells for improved cell efficiency. The All-Black panels use PERC (Passivated Emitter and Rear Contact) technology, which means that an extra layer (called a passivated layer) is added to the rear of the cells. This passivated layer is a mirror-like surface that reflects unabsorbed light onto the cell for a second chance to be absorbed. This makes the cells absorb more sunlight for conversion into electricity. 
  • Positive power tolerance. The All-Black solar modules have a power tolerance of 0 to +10 W, so they will never drop below their stated power output. The power tolerance measures the deviation of solar panels from their advertised power rating. The power tolerance ranges from a negative value to a positive value in many panels. For example, a -5% to +10% power tolerance means that in real life, the power output will be 5% less than stated, 5% more than stated, or anywhere between. The All-Black’s 0 to 10 W power tolerance means in real life, its power output cannot be less than stated but can be more than stated by up to 10 W.
  • Sturdy Construction. All-Black solar panels are some of the most durable, with frames constructed from anodised aluminium alloy, the best material for solar panels. The panel features a 3.2 mm tempered glass covering thicker than you’ll find in many other panels. The framing and superior covering confer great strength on the All-Black.

What is the Canadian Solar All-Black’s Warranty?

The Canadian Solar All-Black comes with a reasonable warranty. It has a 12 years product warranty on materials and workmanship and a 25 years performance warranty.

The product warranty assures that the All-Black will be free of defects in materials and workmanship, affecting its functionality. The performance warranty (linear power warranty) guarantees that the All Black will maintain the following power outputs:

  • It will not fall below 98% of the stated power output during the first year.
  • Its decline will not exceed 0.55% from year 2 to year 25, meaning that at the end of year 25, power output will not be less than 84.8% of stated power.

The 25 years performance warranty is among the highest amongst solar panel manufacturers.

Is the Canadian Solar All-Black a Tier 1 Solar Panel?

The All-Black is a Tier 1 solar panel because it is produced by a Tier 1 solar panel manufacturer.

The tiered system refers to solar manufacturers. Tier 1 manufacturers are considered bankable by at least six banks because they have the capacity to design high-quality solar panels. Tier 1 manufacturers must have produced modules for at least five years in state-of-the-art facilities and have a solid reputation.

Canadian Solar ticks all these boxes, and the All-Black are Class A panels with no visible defects, deliver high performance, and are reliable.

Is the Canadian Solar All-Black a CEC-Approved Panel?

Canadian Solar is one of the companies listed on the approved panel page of the CEC website. This means that the apex regulatory body approves solar panels from Canadian Solar, including the All Black, for use in solar installation all over Australia.

CEC approval isn’t just a mark of solar panel quality. It also means that when you use the All Black, you’ll be able to claim solar subsidies.

Is the Canadian Solar All-Black Safe and Reliable?

Canadian Solar All-Black solar panels can support up to 4,000 Pa of wind load and 6,000 Pa of snow load. The company’s testing labs fully comply with TUV, IEC, and UL testing standards. Canadian Solar is the first solar manufacturer to acquire the ISO: TS16949 certification in module production. 

Canadian Solar All-Black uses dual cells, which reduce internal current and prevent hotspots. So, the panels are safe as they are less likely to overheat, melt, or catch fire.

In addition, they can handle harsh climate conditions as they are built strong with sturdy frames and a relatively thick covering of tempered glass.

Advantages and Disadvantages of the Canadian Solar All-Black

The many advantages of the Canadian Solar All-Black panels include:

  • A beautiful all-black design that looks good on rooftops,
  • High power output for a residential solar panel,
  • High-efficiency mono-PERC cells,
  • Good shade tolerance,
  • A low-temperature coefficient for consistent performance under high temperatures,
  • A low internal current that prevents hotspots,
  • A strong frame and glass covering, and
  • An extended 12-year product warranty and 25-year performance warranty.

As premium solar panels, the All-Black’s lack any real limitations. The only disadvantage is:

  • Since they are monofacial panels, they can only collect light on one side.

Canadian Solar All-Black Installation

Installing the Canadian Solar All-Black panels is the same as installing standard panels.

Since the All-Black modules are monofacial, you won’t need to make your rooftop reflective before installation. You also won’t need to position them so that their rear side collects sunlight. Additionally, you won’t require any special mounting equipment.

The All-Black is also designed for easy installation. Their framing makes handling straightforward, and the frames include mounting holes.

However, installing your solar system yourself is never a good idea. Always employ a certified solar installer like Instyle Solar. A certified and trustworthy installer guarantees you a safe and professional installation.

The benefit of having your system installed by certified installers is that you can claim solar subsidies like STCs

Canadian Solar All-Black Compatibility with Inverters

Another positive feature of the Solar All-Black is its compatibility with all mainstream inverters.

Your solar system must have a solar inverter. The electricity that solar PV modules generate using sunlight is direct current (DC). But home appliances use alternating current (AC). The solar inverter is the device that converts DC from the panels to useable AC energy.

Sadly, some inverters do not work with other solar panels. So, when considering panels, you need to determine whether they are compatible with your solar inverter.

With the All-Black solar panels, you’ll have few inverter compatibility issues. It works well with all top inverters in Australia, including:

  • Sungrow inverters,
  • Huawei inverters,
  • Fronius inverters, and
  • Enphase Microinverters.

Is the Canadian Solar All-Black Worth it for Your Home? Our Opinion

The Canadian Solar All-Black modules are among the very best in terms of performance and reliability.  

They are some of the most powerful solar panels for domestic solar projects.

Employing different solar technologies make them extremely efficient, and their solar production peaks at 370 W to 405 W. This is more electrical energy than most residential solar panels can provide, which means you’ll generate more savings.

These panels are also adept at handling shading and hotspots; the prevention of hotspots and their sturdy construction guarantee a long lifespan.

Next Steps…

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