Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Product review: UEB Portable 4 Ports USB Car Charger - used with Nexus 6p

We usually travel with a lot of gadgets so a 4 port car charger is very useful to us. However, the key question how well it performs with Nexus 6p which is used for navigation, so it needs to be able to charge at an optimal rate. Nexus 6p has a capability for rapid charging, which means it can draw up to 2.5A when the battery is low. Rapid charging is incredibly fast, it is such a nice feature that any charger that cannot support this rapid charging is disqualified.

Prior to testing the charger, I read the specs of the charger and I was disappointed to see that it has very rigid specs for each port (best chargers have a smart chip that allow each port of a charger to work equally well with different mobile devices).

The spec listed the following information:
iPhone port provides 1 A/5V
iPad port provides 2.1 A/5V
Samsung port provides 1.3 A/5V
Android port provides 0.6 A/5V

Fortunately, when I tested each port the spec information proved to be incorrect and each port is not limited to stated limits.
I tested Nexus 6p with both 3.1 compliant and 3.1 non-compliant charging cables.

What is 3.1 compliant cable? USB 3.1 spec specifies that the termination resistor that advertises the maximum available current should be set at 22K which advertises 1.5A of current. Benson Leung has a series of excellent reviews of Type C cables. Benson works for Google's Pixel group and has pointed out that many type-C cables violate the USB 3.1 specification that states that the termination resistor that advertises the maximum available current has been set incorrectly at 10K which advertises 3A of current rather than the correct value of 22K which advertises 1.5A of current. The "bug" in non-compliant cables can be used as a feature of allowing rapid charging for Nexus 6p. The phone does not draw more than 2.5A so it does not damage the phone. The non-compliant cable could be harmful to devices that are not limited to 2.5A such as the ones that Benson evaluated in his reviews.

Nexus 6p, charge level 46-51% keeping all other variables the same (at this level Nexus 6p uses rapid charging if possible)

* Using Tenswall USB 3.1 non-compliant cable
Android port_.._.._.._.._.._.._ 2430 mA (excellent)
iPhone port_.._.._.._.._.._..__ 2320 mA (excellent)
iPad port_.._.._.._.._.._.._.._ 2330 mA (excellent)
Samsung port_.._.._.._.._.._.._ 2310 mA (excellent)

* Using PECHAM USB 3.1 compliant cable
Android port_.._.._.._.._.._.._ 800 mA (bad)
iPhone port_.._.._.._.._.._..__ 1280 mA (ok)
iPad port_.._.._.._.._.._.._.._ 1330 mA (ok)
Samsung port_.._.._.._.._.._.._ 1320 mA (ok)

With a rapid charging non-compliant cable Nexus 6p is getting rapid charging on every port. With a compliant 3.1 USB cable I am not getting rapid charging, but it performs reasonably on every port but the port labeled "Android".

I received this car charger for evaluation and review. Getting a free product to review does not effect what I say. My review and opinions are purely my own based on testing and my experience with many different car chargers.

You can find UEB Car Charger on Amazon via this link.

Ali Julia review ★★★★☆

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