Have you ever bought a USB charger from the (super) market for little and did it take forever for your device to be charged or, even worse, was the charger broken again after a few weeks or months? You’re not the only one. We have tested which chargers are good and last a long time.
Just like with USB cables, there is a lot of mess on the market. From imitation chargers that are not nearly as fast as promised to chargers that get burning hot and / or stop after a few weeks or months. And then there are the so-called multi-chargers (multiple USB ports) that all promise to charge your devices super fast, but fail if you actually connect more than one device.
This has been a major problem for years and now that the USB-C standard is becoming more popular, it is more important than ever that adapters / chargers do their job well as equipment requires more power (up to 100 watts). Think of smartphones with fast charging functions and even laptops that are charged via this port.
If your USB-C device is not charging, it is probably because you are trying to use a USB charger that is unable to provide the required amount of power. A standard USB charger, such as the one for your phone or tablet, probably does not have the required power; instead, you need a USB-C PD (Power Delivery) charger that can deliver up to 100W.
That sounds very simple so far, although that ‘up to 100W’ can really cause a headache. Some laptops, such as the 12-inch USB-C MacBook, can handle 30W. Other brands may need 45 or even 85W. You can charge these energy-intensive laptops with a smaller PD charger, but it will take longer before the battery is full.
Please note that if the capacity is not sufficient it can sometimes mean that your laptop is not charging, but only drains less quickly. That is why it is important to check how much power is needed to charge your laptop.
That information can be found on the charger that came with your laptop, or on the product page of the manufacturer. Look for a number in watts, although it can be expressed in Volts and Amps. If so, multiply the next two numbers to get the number you need. For example, a laptop that needs 12V / 2A to charge needs a 24W USB-C PD charger (12×2 = 24).
Once you know what power you’re looking for, it’s easy to find a USB-C PD charger for your laptop or console. Sometimes it pays to get something a little more crowded than you need. That may cost you a little more, but you will be glad that you bought it if you later decide to upgrade your laptop.
Then you just have to decide how much you want to spend and whether you only want a single USB output or multiple ports for charging all your different USB devices at the same time.
We tested a lot (and had to throw away a lot of junk, some cheaper models gave up the ghost after a few weeks) and put the best for you in a row. After publishing this article, we will probably receive a large number of copies that we will also test, so this article, like the best USB cable article, will be updated regularly.
Mackertop 65 W USB-C PD charger
If you only want to charge one device and it is all about power, then you are in the right place with this Mackertop charger. It is one of the most powerful chargers that you can find and is affordable too. The plug is directly attached to the body. This can be seen as an advantage or disadvantage, for us it is the same.
Anchor 60W PowerPort Atom III
The PowerPort + Atom III uses the latest PowerIQ 3.0 fast-loading chips that are compatible with Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 and Power Delivery.
It can run a total of 60W through the two ports – a USB-A and a USB-C – so that you can charge a USB-C or Thunderbolt 3 laptop simultaneously with a smartphone or tablet.
The USB-C PowerIQ 3.0 port charges at 45W, and the USB-A PowerIQ 2.0 port at 15W. For example, Apple’s iPhones come with a small 5W charger in the box, so this 15W charger for your phone will be able to fill your cell phone much faster.
It is also a nice little charger, because it is 15 percent smaller than a MacBook 60W or many other standard laptop chargers. Anker claims that this is because it uses efficient GaN (gallium nitride) semiconductors instead of silicon.
Anker also sells an even smaller charger, with only a USB-C port – the PowerPort III Mini charges a laptop or other USB-C device with 30W, so slower than the PowerPort + Atom III and without a USB-A port, but cheaper and smaller.
Apple 87W USB-C Power Adapter
The price for Apple’s charger is on the high side, but you also get a good 87 watts of power in return. It may be overkill for most devices, but can come in handy if you have a sample bin.
Apple also has a cheaper 29 watt USB C charger and a 61 watt USB C charger.
Get Apple’s 87W USB-C Power adapter here for the cheapest price
RavPower 60W 5 port USB Wall Charger
RavPower is a big name in the charging world and the USB-C PD charger has four extra USB-A ports. This charger can supply 45 watts via the USB-C port and the remaining 15 watts is for the four iSmart 2.0 ports.
Please note, just like so many multi-port chargers, the UAB-A ports cannot all supply 12 watts at the same time, so keep this in mind if you are charging multiple devices at the same time.
Aukey 58.5W Amp USB-C
This two-port USB charger from Aukey has both a 48-watt USB-C PD output on board and a standard 12-watt USB-A port. That means that you can charge both your smartphone and laptop simultaneously at full speed with a total output of 58.5 watts. This charger is also reasonably priced and is nice and compact.
Satechi Type-C 75 Watt Travel Charger
A more powerful alternative is the Satechi Type-C 75W Travel Charger. This has three extra standard USB 3.0 ports so that you can charge your smartphone, tablet or other device simultaneously with your laptop. One of these ports has Qualcomm Quick Charge 3.0 support, which means that you can charge 38 percent faster than Quick Charge 2.0. The USB-C PD port can deliver 60 watts, so you can charge your laptop nice and fast.
Thanks to the removable power cable, this charger is even easier to take with you when traveling. If you travel abroad, simply purchase the power cord with the local plug and you can remove the awkward travel adapter and still charge all your devices.
Get the Satechi Type C 75 Watt charger here the most economical
Anchor PowerPort + 5 USB-C
Anker is one of the biggest names in the charging world and the PowerPort + combines a 30 watt USB-C PD port with four full size USB-A fast-charging ports for your smartphone and other devices. These can supply a maximum of 12 watts per port with a maximum of 30 watts distributed over the four USB-A ports.
Anker calls this a 60 watt charger, but that only applies if you add all the ports together. This charger is very useful for charging multiple devices at the same time, but if you find it important to charge your USB-C laptop, first check that 30 watts is enough for you.
Get the Anker PowerPort + 5 here the cheapest
DockCase for Apple MacBook Pro
The USB-C Power Adapter from Apple is quite large, but offers nothing more than the charging capacity and with an impressive output of 87 Watt that is more than enough.
The DockCase adapter (originally introduced on the crowdfunding site Kickstarter, but now available in various webshops) takes the Apple Power Adapter and places it in a protective cover that makes it a super dock.
This allows you to connect an external drive, monitor, keyboard, mouse and phone to your MacBook Pro and at the same time synchronize your documents, music or photos at a speed of 5Gbps and charge your devices up to 3x faster.
The DockCase has a built-in USB-C male connector, which is connected to the Apple charger. And the case itself has up to four USB devices, or three USB and a 4K HDMI port. Because it is a normal case (with docking ports) for the Power Adapter, the price is nice and low.
There are QC and HD versions for the 13-in and 15-inch MacBook Pros. The QC DockCase for 13 inch MBP contains three USB-A ports and a passthrough-charging USB-C port. The HD version for 13 inch has two USB-A ports, a 4K HDMI port and the USB-C port. The QC DockCase for 15 inch Macbook Pros contains four USB-A ports (a quick charge function) and a passthrough charging port for USB-C. The QC DockCase for 15 inch MacBook Pros contains four USB-A ports (one with Quick Charge) and a passthrough charging port. The HD version for 15 inch has three USB-A ports, a 4K HDMI and the USB-C port.
Note that this is a housing for the Apple charger, and is not a stand-alone device, unlike the other PD chargers discussed here.
Anchor PowerPort 4 and 5
Is USB-C not so important for you, but do you have a slew of cables with a USB-A connection? Then you can save some money by going for the multi-port chargers from Anker. The PowerPort 4 and PowerPort 5 offer more than enough ports and also provide enough capacity on all of these ports. So you can safely recharge all your devices at the same time without having to worry that the charging speed will decrease. The PowerPort 4 and 5 provide a maximum of 12 watts per port and the PowerPort 5 also has two ports that support Qualcomm’s Quick Charge 3.0, so you can be sure that your smartphones will be charged super fast.
Get the Anker PowerPort 5 here the cheapest
If all goes well, your search is now over and you have found a good charger, but of course this is only half the battle. A good charger is of course nothing without good cables. Fortunately we have sorted that out. Also read The Best USB-C cables