Home & Office
Why you can trust ZDNET : ZDNET independently tests and researches products to bring you our best recommendations and advice. When you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Our process

'ZDNET Recommends': What exactly does it mean?

ZDNET's recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We gather data from the best available sources, including vendor and retailer listings as well as other relevant and independent reviews sites. And we pore over customer reviews to find out what matters to real people who already own and use the products and services we’re assessing.

When you click through from our site to a retailer and buy a product or service, we may earn affiliate commissions. This helps support our work, but does not affect what we cover or how, and it does not affect the price you pay. Neither ZDNET nor the author are compensated for these independent reviews. Indeed, we follow strict guidelines that ensure our editorial content is never influenced by advertisers.

ZDNET's editorial team writes on behalf of you, our reader. Our goal is to deliver the most accurate information and the most knowledgeable advice possible in order to help you make smarter buying decisions on tech gear and a wide array of products and services. Our editors thoroughly review and fact-check every article to ensure that our content meets the highest standards. If we have made an error or published misleading information, we will correct or clarify the article. If you see inaccuracies in our content, please report the mistake via this form.


Why I use this 160W charger for my MacBook instead of the one Apple gave me

The Ugreen Nexode Pro 160W charger beats Apple's standard accessory in several meaningful ways.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor
Ugreen Nexode Pro 160W 4-port fast charger

Ugreen Nexode Pro 160W 4-port fast charger

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

ZDNET's key takeaways

  • The Ugreen Nexode Pro is a 160W 4-port fast charger, available from Amazon for $120.
  • It's powerful and caters to USB-C and USB-A ports.
  • The device is heavy, and bulky (but still smaller than the Apple charger that comes with the MacBook Pro).

For a long time, my Apple MacBook Pro 140W USB-C charger was my favorite charger. Having a charger that could push out 140W of power was useful, even if my MacBook was the only thing I had at the time that could take advantage of that. 

Despite the bulk, the weight, and the fact that it only had a single USB-C port, I took that charger with me everywhere. Well, not the same one; I accidentally left the original at a hotel in Scotland, prompting me to look for a replacement.

Also: The best iPhone power banks you can buy: Expert tested

In my search, I quickly realized that the power adapters on the market today have significantly evolved, making a 140W unit with a single USB-C port somewhat old-fashioned. You can now get multi-port power adapters that are smaller, run cooler, and can still output the full 140W that a MacBook Pro needs to charge at the fastest rate. 

One such adapter being the Ugreen Nexode Pro 160W 4-port fast charger.

View at Amazon

Ugreen Nexode Pro 160W 4-port fast charger features

  • 3 x USB-C ports, 1 x USB-A port
  • 160W maximum total output
  • Max 140W output in single-port configuration
  • Intelligent current distribution
  • GaN (gallium nitride) technology offers faster, more powerful charging with less heat generation, and a smaller, lightweight design
  • Port power outputs:
    USB-C1 Output: 5V 3A | 9V 3A | 12V 3A | 15V 3A | 20V 5A | 28V 5A - 140.0W max
    USB-C2 Output: 5V 3A | 9V 3A | 12V 3.0A | 15V 3A | 20V 5.0A - 100W max
    USB-C3 Output: 5V 3A | 9V 3A | 12V 2.5A - 30W max
    USB-A Output: 5V 3A | 9V 2A | 12V 1.5A | 10V 2.25A - 22.5W max
Port power outputs

Port power outputs


The Nexode Pro 160W 4-port fast charger passed all my usual tests for power output for extended periods of time under a heavy load. I also carried out thermal checks under the heaviest loads possible, and while I did record spot temperatures of 50.4°C/122.7°F, this is acceptable and within the safe "no injury" temperature range. This temperature indicates the charger's efficiency in managing heat, even under maximum stress.

Note: ASTM C1055 -- the Standard Guide for Heated System Surface Conditions that Produce Contact Burn Injuries -- states that the average person can touch objects up to 60°C/140°F for up to five seconds without sustaining irreversible burn injuries.

Thermal image of the Ugreen Nexode Pro 160W 4-port fast charger.

Thermal image of the Ugreen Nexode Pro 160W 4-port fast charger.

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

This charger does exactly what it says it will do on the spec sheet, and it does it safely. Sure, the temperatures are such that you shouldn't throw a blanket or duvet over this charger when it's in use, but believe me, you shouldn't be doing that with any charger.

This charger is also small – 21 percent smaller than Apple's 140W charger to be exact – so it's convenient for throwing into a bag for travel, and the three USB-C ports and one USB-A gives a great deal of charging flexibility. Its compact size enhances portability, making it an ideal travel companion.

Note that I've tested the UK version of this charger, but apart from the plug on the end, the specs are identical to those of the US version.

Ugreen's 140W 4-port charger next to Apple's single-port 140W charger.

Ugreen's 140W 4-port charger next to Apple's single-port 140W charger.

Adrian Kingsley-Hughes/ZDNET

Also: The best GaN chargers you can buy

I've seen a few complaints about this charger not outputting the 140W needed to charge a MacBook Pro at full speed – 0 to 50% in 27 minutes – but those who are experiencing this aren't using the required USB-C to MagSafe lead, and instead charge their MacBook Pros using USB-C-to-USB-C cables. Here there's a 100W limit, and this will be lower if you don't use a cable that's rated for 100W. 

ZDNET's buying advice

The Ugreen Nexode Pro 160W 4-port fast charger is a superb charger for those who have laptops like the MacBook Pro that need a powerful charger, but want the flexibility and convenience of a 4-port charger, along with a legacy port for peace of mind. 

Editorial standards