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One of the most common complaints I come across regarding electronic gadgets relates to charging.
You, know, those kinds of questions.
Normally if I'm at home, I pull out one of my many trusted USB test meters and use this to test the system.
But I don't carry one with me as a rule.
But what if there was a cable that had a built-in power meter?
Enter the Mcdodo 100W USB-C cable with built-in power meter.
Also: How to tell if your iPhone Lightning charging cable is a fake
Note: I've seen similar looking cables for sale, most being sold for a higher price. I've not tested any of these and cannot comment on the quality of them.
I have to be honest and say that when I came across this particular charging cable on Amazon a while back, I wasn't expecting much. I generally dislike gimmicky cables because usually, both the cables and the gimmicks built into them are poor quality.
This cable breaks that pattern.
First off, the 4-foot cable is tough and encased in braided nylon that allows it to put up with harsh usage. I've pulled and twisted and dragged it about, and it seems more than capable of putting up with this sort of treatment. The ends are high quality and attached well -- I've tried pulling them off -- and the cable still looks like new after a fair bit of use and abuse.
Everything about this cable is well made. It's a high-quality USB-C cable
Note that this cable supports USB 2.0 data speeds up to 480kbps and not the higher USB-C 3.0 standards.
Also: Are long USB-C charging cables a fire hazard?
Then we come to the power meter.
It's conveniently built into one of the connectors. There are no buttons or anything. You just plug the cable in, and it tells you how much power is flowing across it.
The tech specs say it supports 20V/5A/100W, and in my testing, it seems happy with 100W of power going across it for an extended period.
The cable has happily been charging my 16-inch M1 Pro MacBook Pro over USB-C at 94W for extended periods with no problems at all.
The meter is also more than accurate enough for my needs. I'm not launching rockets into space or doing brain surgery, so I'm happy with something that has 5% accuracy. My testing suggests that the power meter built into this cable is well within this acceptable tolerance.
Bottom line, it's a really good bit of kit, especially given the price. This is a great buy if you're in the market for a charging cable, and you can live with the 480kbps data speed limitation.
And it's perfect for those who want something different or who are asked to do random diagnostics when out and about.