Why do cheapy aftermarket charge/sync cables stop working?

Discussion in 'iPhone Accessories' started by james92se, Sep 16, 2011.

  1. james92se macrumors 6502a

    Jun 21, 2010
    Dallas, TX
    Anybody notice this?

    All of the eBay/cheapo charge/sync cables and car-chargers I've bought over the years (probably a dozen between all my iPhones over the years) have all stopped working within a few months of getting them.

    Now, some of them where so thin that they broke on the ends and frayed and this is obviously why they stopped working (and frustratingly the same can be said for the stock cables, too). But even all the others with no obvious wear/fraying have done the same thing.

    And it's always the same process each time - work fine for several weeks/months. Then they start to cut in and out randomly. Then they just one day don't work at all.

    I just don't understand what would be going "wrong" with all of these sets that would make them all universally stop working. :confused:
  2. blueroom macrumors 603


    Feb 15, 2009
    Toronto, Canada
  3. james92se thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jun 21, 2010
    Dallas, TX
    Very informative.
  4. Kyotoma macrumors 68000


    Nov 11, 2010
    Carnegie and Ontario
    He has a point though. You get what you pay for.
  5. james92se thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Jun 21, 2010
    Dallas, TX
    Lol, okay, obviously..

    That's like telling somebody in a Kia "you get what you pay for" when their car won't start. But that doesn't explain why their car won't start.

    I'm merely curious what could universally be going "wrong" with these cables to cause them to all stop working completely. Blaming it on being "cheap" doesn't really satisfy that curiosity. I'm mainly asking because I recently purchased two 6 ft. charge/sync cables on eBay that I loooooove and, alas, both recently stopped working. :(
  6. Lindenhurst macrumors 6502a

    Aug 24, 2011

    Poor quality control and the fact that they use the cheapest materials available. Certain materials last longer than others. Obviously the less expensive knockoff items use cheaper materials, thus they break sooner.
  7. kbfr08 macrumors 6502

    Mar 16, 2007
    Just a heads up, but do NOT ever use a third party (read: cheap) charger. Because of the poor quality materials, they'll send unfiltered voltage right to the iphone. That's not really good, since the voltage filters will sometimes let "unclean" voltage pass through, thus leaving the power management chip to deal with it. If you're going to use cheap charger regularly, then you're going to break your PMIC, which means no more charging at all.
  8. toiday macrumors regular

    Sep 4, 2011
    There is no filters on the cable itself. Filters and voltage regulators are on the charger. Some USB cables do have some kind of filter on it but you will see a big round bump near the end of the cable. But the real concern with the cheap cables is not just that they don't last very long, their contacts may not fit perfectly to your device and may not be smooth as they supposed to be. Therefore, plug/unplug to your device for a long time may damage the contacts on your device.
  9. LMD75 macrumors 6502

    Oct 5, 2010
    I agree with this. I bought a couple of black USB dock cables for my iP4. Even though the form factor is almost spot on, the metal contacts appear cheaper and they do not connect as smoothly as an official cable. These cables are going in the bin.
  10. Krandor macrumors 6502

    Jul 15, 2010
    You do not see any wire fraying on the outside, but what has happened is that the wires inside were not properly seated and/or padded properly and so inside the wires have been moving around more then they should and eventually this does cause a break in the wire.
  11. thewitt macrumors 68020


    Sep 13, 2011
    I use a 3m extension cable for my iPad charger, however it has gold plated connectors and very low impedance, causing virtually no loss in charging performance.

    It's a $40 cable however...

  12. Menel macrumors 603


    Aug 4, 2011
    No filters in cable, they are just straight through wires.

    I have Apple cables dating back to 3rd and 4th gen Nano that still work fine with no issue. Got some extras from RMA'ing the thing. iPhones, iPad, over time collected more official apple dock connectors than I can even use.

    Also have a black Griffin able, use it in car with 12V-USB dual micro plug thing, seems plenty robust.
  13. PrincessTia macrumors newbie

    Oct 25, 2012
    Sacramento, CA
    Is this a USB extension cable, or is it a charging cable? Has it proved to be durable over time? Are you still happy with it?

    My latest in a series of three (four?) long charging cords just died. The more I look at reviews of these cords, no matter the manufacturer or price, they seem to just quit. If you're still happy with your cord, I thought I might give it a try.

  14. darster Suspended

    Aug 25, 2011
    With most cheap cables, cases, etc, they were probably OEM, but failed QC. Instead of throwing out, they resell as cheap knockoffs through ebay.
  15. Mr.C macrumors 601

    Apr 3, 2011
    London, UK.
    I don't even know why this question even needs to be asked. It's common sense not to buy such cheap cables. You get what you pay for and they are cheap for a reason. They're not licensed and most likey reverse engineered and definitely going to be of poor quality.
  16. gsugolfer macrumors 6502a


    Jul 11, 2010
    Georgia, USA
    I don't know where/why or when you paid 40 bucks for a USB extension cable, but you got swindled.
  17. jjbad macrumors newbie

    Nov 6, 2014
    cheap iPhone charger damaged my iPhone 5

    My iPhone 5 dead when my cheap charger blewn up. Please help what can I do.. do I need to replace the battery by my self? Is the explosion cause a big damage on my iPhone? or shall I bring it to Apple shop or high St. repair shop? How much will it cost me? please help!!!
  18. 4583568, Nov 6, 2014
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2014

    4583568 Suspended

    Oct 14, 2014
    It amazes me that people buy cheap accessories and wonder why they stop working. Do you think we are all engineers here? They stop working because materials suck, the way the accessories are built sucks, everything about them suck.

    I still have the original accessories of the first ipod touch. You bought an expensive phone, learn to use decent accessories.
  19. jjbad macrumors newbie

    Nov 6, 2014
    please I know it my mistake.. but please I need some advice and help not being told off.. hope u understand feel upset and depress :(
  20. 4583568 Suspended

    Oct 14, 2014
    Oh, I was speaking with the OP :D
    Do not try to do anything alone. Take it to the apple store and tell them what you wrote here. Not sure if you should tell them that it is due to a cheap cable.
  21. jjbad macrumors newbie

    Nov 6, 2014
    Thanks.. I supposed to have appointment at apple store 3hrs ago but I'm a bit scared going there knowing what the apple staff going to tell me might say pay the repair cost or upgrade for a new one.. How about sending it to a high St. repair shop what do you think it might cost?
  22. 4583568 Suspended

    Oct 14, 2014
    I have no idea.
    Ask apple. You do not have to pay if you do not want and knowing the repair cost is better than nothing.
  23. xreei macrumors member


    Oct 3, 2014
    The inside of the connector isn't potted with epoxy. So any strain you put on the connector goes straight to the thin shoddily soldered wires on the inside.
  24. GottaFix macrumors newbie

    Feb 20, 2015
    Easy Fix

    I've had the same issues with third party chargers quitting after a while and then I figured it out. Turn off your phone for a few minutes and plug it in while it is still off. The phone should automatically power up and will be able to be charging and also should transmit data.

    You're welcome :cool:
  25. dangros macrumors newbie

    Dec 19, 2012
    The question should be phrased: Is there an aftermarket cable that doesnt stop working for no reason whatsoever? I think the OP wanted to know what physical traits are causing the cables to no longer work when there are no visible signs of damage. I also have several cables that stopped charging but look fine otherwise. Some just seem to charge slower than the amazon or iphone cables but I believe this has to do w/the amount of amps they can allow.

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34 September 16, 2011