My first computer was a Zenith. This desktop closely resembled the mythical design of computers featured in 1950s science fiction movies. It boasted a four-color monitor that was physically attached to the main console, a 3.5-inch dual floppy drive, and the dozens of disks necessary to run Microsoft Works and the MS-DOS operating system.
While this computer has been hopelessly outdated for decades, it was my first love and is still fondly remembered.
Today, I am reviewing a retro-styled charging unit that, while incorporating the latest features, is designed to appeal to those who enthusiastically participated in the early days of computing.
My package contained a 67W charger, a 35W charger, three travel adapters, a USB-C to USB-C cable, and a USB-C to Lightning cable. The packaging is designed well enough that you are likely to repurpose it as a storage unit.
The included cables are tinted in the yellowish hue generally associated with electronic devices that have been in constant use for many years.
The 67W charger weighs 4.15 ounces. This device is 2.2 inches tall, 1.6 inches wide, and 1.6 inches deep and is designed to simulate the appearance of the original Mackintosh computer.
A pair of folding AC prongs are positioned at the bottom. My package also contained UE, UK, and AU adapters.
This device is fitted with three USB-C outputs and includes a display that indicates the amount of power being drawn. The charger can supply up to 67W of power when one smartphone is connected. If additional devices are added, the available energy is shared between them.
The smaller 35W charger, which weighs less than two ounces, also emulates the design of an elderly computer. It is 1.7 inches high, 1.3 inches wide, and 1.4 inches deep.
This unit’s display will reflect the amount of power drawn by switching between white, yellow, blue, and green colors. It features one USB-C charging port.
67-Watt Charger Specifications
- Manufacturer: SHARGEEK
- Name: Retro 67
- Model: S067U
- Input power: 100-240VAC (1.5A Max)
- Output power: 67 watts (max)
- Power sharing: Output dependent on port selected and number of devices connected
- Outputs: 3 USB-C
- Technology: GaN
35-Watt Charger Specifications
- Name: Retro 35
- Model: S035U
- Input power: 100-240VAC
- Output power: 35 watts (max)
- Outputs: 1 USB-C
- Technology: GaN
Charging Cable Specifications
- Cable one: USB-C to USB-C
- Cable two: USB-C to Lightning
- Cable length: 48 inches
- Fast charge capable: Yes
The charger is first plugged into an AC outlet and then connected, via USB cables, to the devices being charged. This charger generates 5 volts DC with an output varying between .1 to 2.4 amps. If connected to devices capable of fast charging, amperage and voltage will be significantly higher.
These chargers automatically identify connected devices and their unique charging requirements.
This specification denotes higher power capabilities, allowing USB-C PD-enabled devices to charge quickly over a USB connection. The two coupled devices negotiate a power contract, determining how much power will be pulled from the charger.
Output voltages begin at the 5V setting but are configurable up to 20V. The charger’s output can rise as high as 67 watts.
Power Delivery allows for power to flow in both directions. If, for example, you connect two phones that support Power Delivery with a USB-C charging cable, one phone could be used to charge the other.
This pair of SHARGEEK chargers can handle power delivery (PD3), QC3.0, SPC/FCP, Apple 2.4, and various other fast charging protocols.
The GaN Charger
Gallium nitride is a semiconductor material that rose to prominence in the 1990s through the manufacture of LEDs. This crystal-like substance enjoys a wider "band gap" than its silicon rival. A broader band gap allows energy to pass through more efficiently, resulting in lower operating temperatures and higher power limits.
Charging Multiple Devices
The Retro 67’s maximum power output is 67 watts. The power available at each port drops as additional devices are connected to the unit.
If a pair of MacBooks were plugged into two of the USB-C ports, 45 watts of power would be distributed to the first laptop and 20 watts of power to the second. The available power would be further divided if all three output ports were connected.
The Retro 67 charger can output up to 67 watts without generating excess heat. It is fitted with three USB-C output ports. This device is small, lightweight, and ideal for simultaneously charging various devices.
The Retro 35 charger is even smaller. It can supply 35W of charging power to one device.
While these chargers take advantage of the most modern techniques and materials available, their design is reminiscent of the early days of computing. If you appreciate the styling, the Retro 67 Charger should be on your wish list.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2023 Walter Shillington