Chargeasap Zeus packs 270W of international power into a small charger
I’ve mentioned before that gallium nitride (GaN) chargers are a game changer in terms of how much power can be delivered from a compact PSU, and the Chargeasap Zeus takes that to a whole new level.
It’s a highly portable charging brick that delivers 270W of total output power from a single port up to 140W, and its bundled ultra-compact international plug adapters make it a really convenient travel choice…
If you’re traveling with your MacBook Pro, one option is to effectively use it as a travel charger. This is something I’ve done on several trips, although it’s not always a practical option, so I usually travel with one PSU (actually two, for reasons I’ll get into).
When Chargeasap sent me a prototype of their new Zeus 270W charger, I tried it out on two trips – one to the US and one to Europe – and was impressed enough to make it my new default travel charger.
As mentioned earlier, conventional power supplies are silicon-based. Gallium nitride, or GaN, is an alternative semiconductor material that offers three major advantages over silicon.
First they Many more efficient in carrying current. This means you can put more power into the same size unit. Or vice versa, you can squeeze a lot of power into a smaller brick.
Second, they generate less heat due to less energy loss. That’s generally a good thing, as overheating is one of the easiest ways to kill tech devices, and it also means they don’t need a big cooler like the one here. So they can be more compact.
Third, this significantly improved efficiency is better for the environment, with less energy wasted as heat.
Chargeasap Zeus: see and feel
The first thing you notice about the charger is how compact it is. Measures hair over 3.5 inches long, 2 inches wide and 1.7 inches deep. For nearly twice the power and four times the ports, it’s less bulky than Apple’s 140W charger.
The prototype I received is bright white, but the company tells me that feedback from Indiegogo investors indicates a preference for a matte color, so it will bring that change for the production run.
The next most noticeable thing about the Zeus is the color OLED display used to display the actual voltages and watts your devices are drawing.
It must be said that the charger is heavy! It weighs 1.3 pounds, compared to half a pound for Apple’s 140W charger, but that’s a price worth paying to power all Apple devices simultaneously.
What’s most striking about the Zeus’ specs isn’t just the impressive 270W of total power, but how it breaks down. 140W is only available on one of the USB-C sockets, allowing my 16-inch MacBook Pro M1 Max, for example, to be fully equipped for even the most demanding tasks.
- Dimensions: 90 x 42 x 50mm/3.54″ x 2.17″ x 1.96″
- Weight: 320g / (0.7lbs)
- Power Input: 100-240V~50-60Hz 3A
- Total output power: 270W
- Ports: 3x USB-C and 1x USB-A
- 140W USB-C1: 5~15V⎓3A / 20~28V⎓5A (PPS: 5~21V⎓5A)
- 100W USB-C2: 5~15V⎓3A / 20V⎓5A (PPS: 3.3~21V⎓5A)
- 100W USB-C3: 5~15V⎓3A / 20V⎓5A (PPS: 3.3~21V⎓5A)
- 36W USB-A: 4.5⎓5A / 5V⎓~4.5A / 5V⎓3A / 9V⎓3A / 12V⎓3A
- Protection: Over current, over voltage, over temperature and short circuit protection
The best thing about the Zeus in use is that it really is a do-it-all charger – but in a fairly compact unit, it works great for both HQ and office power.
I was able to power a 16-inch MacBook Pro, a 12.9-inch iPad Pro, and an iPhone 14 Pro Max at full power without nearing device capacity.
This compactness is a significant advantage for me. I usually traveled with two chargers. A base powerful enough to power and charge all my devices that I use in my hotel room or local apartment. But because it’s so big, I also usually pack a second, smaller one to use on the trip itself – to feed a seat on a train or plane.
This is because I have limited seating space and I only need something with enough power to actively use one device at a time and charge another or two. A typical example of a long-haul flight is powering the iPad while charging the iPhone and Apple Watch.
The Chargeasap Zeus is the first time I’ve owned a charger that’s powerful enough for local use, yet compact enough for in-flight use. On both trips I only used one charger.
One thing I like is the extremely compact travel adapters that come with it. Each one slides in and out, covering almost every country in the world between them.
I have four cables connected to it, so only one thing can come out of my bag. Here you can see it with an Apple Watch for scale.
My MacBook Pro MagSafe cable, USB-C cable for iPad, MagSafe charger for iPhone and Apple Watch charger are connected to it. I could make things more compact by using shorter cables, but since seat-level power often doesn’t reach the floor, I find that long cables provide the flexibility I need to power devices on my desk while charging embedded devices. around me.
There is a potential downside to the compact size. All of my previous travel chargers had more than eight power plugs, allowing for a shorter or longer power cable. With Zeus, the power supply itself must be plugged into an outlet. This can limit flexibility and also indicates that the weight of the brick can pull it out of the slot depending on the angle of the slot. I haven’t found this problem so far though. This includes the use of every plane, two trains, four lounges, two hotel rooms and several different cafes.
Chargeasap Zeus: results
It’s rare to find a power supply with enough capacity and ports to fully power and charge all my Apple devices. Getting that much power in a device that’s actually more compact than Apple’s 140W MacBook Pro power supply is unheard of!
As someone who’s completely obsessed with USB-C, I’d like to see all four ports accept it instead of just three of the four. However, a single USB-A port is handy for any mates who carry around an old cable and need to grab some power to charge their phones. Indeed, I was able to help the guy next to me in the cafe in this way.
The display is the icing on the cake, allowing you to see live power consumption for each of your devices.
Simply put, the combination of power and portability means I was able to swap two travel chargers for one – and it now lives in my handbag.
The Chargeasap Zeus 270W GaN charger starts at $129 for pre-order on Indiegogo. While we are cautious about covering crowdfunded projects, since not all of them deliver, Chargeasap has a great track record and certainly the prototype I tested (one of 50) proves it works.
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