Finding the one true “perfect” wall charger seems like an impossible task. We’re all carrying different gadgets around. Our laptops have power needs that can vary widely from one to the next. Some people make an effort to lighten the load of tech in their bag when possible; others don’t mind lugging an arsenal of accessories around as long as they’re prepared for any situation. (I’ve used the Mini USB-to-USB-C cable in my backpack maybe twice over the course of four years, but it’s still got a permanent spot in there just in case.)
If you’re traveling light with only a phone and / or tablet, I’m not sure Anker’s 30-watt charger can be beaten. Where it gets complicated is when you start needing more power than that — or more ports to work with. At that point, the options can seem endless.
Last week, I picked up this 67-watt Belkin USB-C wall charger at Best Buy. I think it’s fairly new, and what drew me to it was the fact that it includes three ports despite its relatively compact size. Most other three-port chargers that I see inevitably include USB-A somewhere in the mix, and you know what? I’m just not about that life anymore. It’s 2024. I’m all in on USB-C. There’s no going back. And if I’m traveling with someone who only has a USB-A charging cable, there’s almost always a USB-C adapter in my bag.
Another reason I really like the Belkin so far is that it has clearly labeled ports. They tell you the maximum output for each USB-C slot — 67 watts whenever any of them are used alone — but also the power you’ll get when all three are active at the same time. There aren’t any silly icons of a laptop or phone to decipher. It’s just pure useful data printed right there on the unit. And the port with slightly more power is spaced farther from the other two, which makes it easy to identify from a distance.
This charger gives me plenty of leeway for juicing up my 12.9-inch iPad Pro, Pixel Fold, and Fujifilm camera all at the same time. I can swap any of ’em out for my Nintendo Switch if need be. These scenarios leave out my main computer, a 16-inch MacBook Pro with Apple’s M1 chip, and this Belkin charger falls well short of the 96-watt brick that accompanied the machine. But if I plug in a single cable, it can still slow-charge the laptop in most cases, which is all I really need if I’ll be working from a coffee shop for a few hours. I’m not editing 8K video over here; my heaviest workloads revolve around Lightroom. And the 67W max output seems tailored for the M2 MacBook Air since that’s what it takes to fast-charge Apple’s sleekest laptop.
Now maybe you’re wondering, “Chris, what about loose outlets?” And I hear you. Sometimes it feels like a worn airport outlet will spit out your charger if you so much as breathe in its direction. But I’ve used the Belkin on a few iffy outlets so far, and I think the positioning of the ports actually does it some favors in this regard: in my experience so far, pulling up on the charger isn’t as destabilizing as tugging on an outward-facing port can be.
The biggest downside of this charger is definitely its price. At a penny shy of 45 bucks, you can find more affordable options — particularly if you don’t need three ports. I have no doubt that Belkin rakes it in from accessories like this, so I implore you to find this thing on sale somewhere or direct any Amazon or Best Buy gift card credit that you may have toward it; that’s what I did. I’ll definitely be keeping my trusty Anker chargers around for different scenarios. But thanks to its trio of USB-C ports and compact size, this one is my new take-everywhere winner.
Photography by Chris Welch / The Verge