Getting a good multiport charger is a no-brainer these days, with most people having more than one device to charge especially when you are on the go.
This year I have had to work out of the car, allied health professional’s waiting rooms, food courts, cafes, for extended periods of time. It was an exercise in battery management until I got myself sorted. Now to lighten my bag, I get to test out the Satechi 165W USB-C 4-Port PD GaN Charger.
I have previously reviewed a Satechi 108W desktop charger back in September 2021. The 165W version is noticeably more compact, with a Mark 1 Mod 0 eyeball calling it about three-quarters the size of the 108W version.
This is possible because of the use of Gallium Nitride (GaN) technology. In a nutshell GaN chargers require less components than the silicon counterparts, more efficient at transferring current, and less energy is lost to heat generated. Overall it is more efficient at transferring energy to your devices and therefore you need less to work with.
From a looks perspective, it retains the classic Satechi theme of space grey sides with black fascia. This one features all USB-C ports and they are all born equal, capable of delivering a maximum of 100W of power to your device on any one port.
The figure 8 (IERC C7) power cord is detachable and it also comes with a detachable desktop stand to keep it standing upright.
It’s a charger, there are no frills, no apps, just raw power ready to be used.
The power distribution per port is rated as follows depending on the number of concurrent ports in use:
1 x USB-C port in use – up to 100W
2 x USB-C port in use – up to 100W + 60W
3 x USB-C port in use – 60W + 60W + 45W or 100W + 30W + 30W
4 x USB-C port in use – 60W + 45W + 30W + 30W up to 165W total
The great thing is, you don’t have to worry about any of that because the Satechi automatically distributes power depending on the devices connected.
My two main rigs for work are a Dell Latitude 5420 and a Lenovo X1 Gen 9. Both comes standard with a 65W power brick. Yes you can get 90W ones as optional but I don’t have those.
Putting the Satechi to the test, there are no issues powering each laptop individually. Both laptops expects a minimum of 65W power and gets it – singularly.
When trying to power both laptops together though, the first one connected works fine. The second can’t negotiate enough to work. As a result the computer attempts to renegotiate but after a few to-and-fros, ultimately reports back saying there is an issue. Given the power distribution matrix, it would appear that I am 5W short to make it work in this configuration. At least in my use case.
That said, if you have a laptop, a tablet, phone and/or a low power draw of something like a Mobile Pixels screen, the Satechi is a no brainer to have in the bag.
To be fair, there is nothing to complain about in the charger or it’s performance. What bugs me is that not a single cable is included in the box. It’s hard to hit the ground running unless you are a power user. Even for me I have very limited 100W rated USB-C cables (bugger I should have fixed this before EoFY).
The Satechi gives a lot of flexibility when it comes to keeping your devices charged up. Whether you are desk bound or on the go, this compact charger can keep you going quickly and without a fuss. The major win for me is that I never have to look at which port is rated for what output. They are all born equal and I can just plug my devices in and I am ready to roll.
It makes for a great charger to carry when you are travelling too, rather than everyone and every device needing a separate power point.
The Satechi 165W USB-C 4-Port PD GaN Charger has a RRP $119.99, and is available from their website. If you don’t have PD rated cables handy, you can also grab some whilst you are at it.
DRN would like to thank Satechi for providing the review unit.
MacBook Pro M2 Pro & Max 2023/M2 2022/M1 Pro & Max 2021/M1 2020/2020/2019/2018/2017/2016, MacBook Air M2 2022/M1 2020/2020/2019/2018, iPad Pro M2 2022/M1 2021/2020/2018, iPad Air M1 2022/2020, iPad 2022, iPad Mini 2021, iPhone 14 Pro Max/14 Pro/14 Plus/14, iPhone 13 Pro Max/13 Pro/13 Mini/13, iPhone 12 Pro Max/12 Pro/12 Mini/12, iPhone 11 Pro Max/11 Pro/11, iPhone XS Max/XS/XR/X, Apple Watch Ultra & Series 8/7/SE/6/5/4/3/2/1, AirPods Pro 2 & 1, AirPods 3/2/1 and most USB-C devices.
Wall Charger with US-style plug
Dimensions: 10 x 3.1 x 7.1 cm
1 x USB-C PD connected – up to 100W
2 x USB-C PD connected – up to 100W/60W
3 x USB-C PD connected – 60W/60W/45W or 100W/30W/30W
4 x USB-C PD connected – 60W/45W/30W/30W
up to 165W total