Portable adapter to charge MacBook Pro and others

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by technoholic, Nov 23, 2016.

  1. technoholic macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2016
    #1
    Im not sure if what I'm looking for exists, but Im trying to consolidate my travel charging kit a bit. I'd like to find a worldwide travel adapter that converts all countries to UK socket, to allow for plugging things in that are not USB (so needs to be able to work with my wife hairdryer!) but also provide some high current USB ports and ideally, be able to charge my new MBP over USB-C.

    Does such a thing exist and can I buy it before Monday!?
     
  2. Brookzy macrumors 601

    Brookzy

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #2
    So you want something with a international adapters, a three prong mains plug, high current USB-A, and USB-C?

    That's asking a bit much! Especially robust enough for a hairdryer. You won't find anything that can do that.

    What I would recommend instead is this, which you can get by tomorrow, is small, excellently built, and safe. Its power input is a standard figure 8 AC adapter, so you can easily get international cables for next to nothing and plug that in.

    It will charge your MacBook Pro at up to 45W safely while having 15W left (i.e. three standard iPhone chargers) over four USB-A ports. If you unplug the MacBook, each USB-A port will provide up to 12W.

    There is very little on the market by way of high wattage USB-C chargers that are safe. I've been looking for a while myself. 45W will be sufficient for a 13" MacBook Pro. If you want higher wattage and three USB-A ports are enough, an option is this (but I can't find a UK seller and I've not seen it independently tested) or a dedicated USB-C-only charger, e.g. Apple's or Google's.
     
  3. zhenya macrumors 603

    zhenya

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2005
    #3
    As someone who travels internationally a lot, I've never found any of the 'all in one' adapters to be that great. What I do is carry a small surge protector like this https://www.amazon.co.uk/Belkin-Mul...8082&sr=8-4&keywords=portable+surge+protector and then a couple of the adapters that fit on the end to convert it to whatever countries I'm visiting like this https://www.amazon.co.uk/ShaniTech-...d=1479908209&sr=8-4&keywords=uk+to+us+adapter

    That won't adjust voltage, but almost all of your portable electronics these days are 100-240v anyhow. USB-C is really too new for anything good to have been integrated into these, so you'll still need to carry your MBP brick. But you can leave your phone/ipad chargers at home.

    Note that your wife's hairdryer is probably not universal voltage, so if you will be visiting any 100-120v countries, I would use the hairdryer in the hotel room. You don't want to be carrying a step-down transformer.
     
  4. technoholic thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 20, 2016
    #4
    Thanks Brookzy. To be honest, that Anker was actually top of my list so far, I knew I was asking for a lot! I'm just trying to minimise the stuff I have to carry but if I have to take a separate UK-Europe/US plug adapter for the hair dryers etc, then I will have to, not a big deal, just not ideal. The Anker would be perfect if it came built in with flip out different plugs though, dont you think!

    Also in relation to MacBook charging over USB-C, am I right in saying that it can be charged by different wattages but that this is aceivegd by USB power adapters varying the output voltage and current? I.e the MacBook can accept different voltages rather than one single voltage? Im new to USB charging as you can tell!
    --- Post Merged, Nov 23, 2016 ---
    Thanks, and you're right, it's not universal but most travel that she will need will be Europe, anything to NA we will use the hotel one. We have used her hair straighteners in the US and it does work, just heats up slowly.

    Again, the small surge protector is a good idea which I'll look into, but it could be made great but just having universal flip out plugs on the input, that would save at least having to take separate adapters.
     
  5. Brookzy macrumors 601

    Brookzy

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #5
    I combine the Anker with the Apple World Travel Adapter Kit, so you just pop the local duckhead on top and you're ready to go. Sorry about the rubbish photo, I just took it to illustrate.

    IMG_4857.JPG

    My Anker charger actually stopped working a couple of days ago, but I emailed Anker and they're sending me a new one free of charge, so their customer service is great.

    The 13" MacBook Pro charges best at around 20V 3A (which is 60W - 20 x 3). For some reason Apple chooses 20.3V 3A for 61W, but it's all the same really.

    The Anker charger can support up to 15V 3A - which the 13" Pro will accept - and therefore charge at 45W. So yes, it will accept different voltages and wattages so long as the charger is fully compliant and within spec. Google engineers Nathan K and Benson Leung voluntarily verify cables and chargers and the level of noncompliance is shocking. Here is their spreadsheet which they update with what they have tested. They were highly impressed with the Anker charger.
     
  6. technoholic thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 20, 2016
    #6
    Thanks mate, appreciate it. I think this is the route I will go!
     
  7. zhenya macrumors 603

    zhenya

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2005
    #7
    Note that there are some limitations on that Anker device. It will only charge the MacBook when plugged in directly, not through any kind of port adapter, and it won't charge any other Apple devices at high speed through the usb-c port. Without any other 'standard' plugs you are still looking at carrying extra stuff to plug in the hairdryer, etc.

    At this point I would plan on carrying your MBP charging brick. If you carry a usb-a to usb-c adapter the same brick can be used to charge your other usb devices, and it's much more reliable than the 3rd party usb-c stuff that's available at the moment.
     
  8. technoholic thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2016
    #8
    hmmm food for thought. Only gives me one port though. And yeah just taking the Anger wouldn't allow for hair dryer plugging. It should be noted that only when I am travelling on my own or when I'm travelling for business will I generally be taking my laptop, otherwise for holidays it's just going to be phones and iPads.
     
  9. technoholic thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2016
    #9
    Guys, I think my best option is still to get the Anker above, but take some travel adapters for each country. So Travel adapter--->Anker--->Phone/Laptop and Travel Adapter--->Hair dryer etc.

    But

    Instead of the figure 8 lead, can you get a nice compact plug that has a moulded fig 8 one one side and UK plug on the other, like the one from the world travel kit that Brookzy used but not having to buy the kit? I dont know what to search for to find it
     
  10. papa8706 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2010
    #10
    Not sure the best place to ask, but if someone doesn't mind:

    I'm under the understanding that the new MBP doesn't come with a power adapter extension cable. I have an older 2013' charger. Would the extension on that work fine with the new 2016 models? Appears be be the same one Apple sells online but I just wanted to make sure?
     
  11. technoholic thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Mar 20, 2016
  12. gwang73 macrumors 6502a

    gwang73

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2009
    Location:
    San Francisco Area
    #12
    I'm waiting for these guys to update to support USB-C charging for the MBP https://www.gozolt.com and use a small universal adapter I got in Japan a while back.
     
  13. technoholic thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2016
    #13
    Dammit! I just ordered the Anker and then you posted that, which is almost exactly what I'm looking for, except it has US prongs, which won't work in the UK without an adapter, and there is no USBC yet....so actually maybe the Anker is the best choice for now!
    --- Post Merged, Nov 23, 2016 ---
    TwelveSouth need to make a PlugBug with more USB ports to attach to the new MacBook charger, then it would be the perfect solution.
     
  14. gwang73 macrumors 6502a

    gwang73

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2009
    Location:
    San Francisco Area
    #14
    Just a thought, if you have the 15" MBP, 45W will take longer to charge and if you're doing any intensive processing, it may not be enough. I use the 60W adapter from apple for traveling without any issues and charges pretty quickly.
     
  15. technoholic thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2016
    #15
    You're right but I have the 13 so should be fine
     

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