Wondering about reliable MacBook chargers? This MacBook Chargers buying guide includes our Top 4 Best MacBook chargers picks!
Apple’s successful MacBook family comprises the most efficient laptops, i.e., MacBook, MacBook Pro, and MacBook Air. Unfortunately, the MacBook chargers are lacking.
Every Apple user knows how often MacBook chargers need to be replaced. Many users struggle to find the most compatible MacBook charger for their specific device. This is because different types of chargers fit with varying ranges of MacBooks.
Are you someone looking for a suitable MacBook charger for your device? By the end of this article, you will be able to select a suitable charger for your MacBook.
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In this article
- 1 How to Identify the MacBook Model
- 2 Are All MacBook Chargers the Same?
- 3 Inspect Your Charging Cable
- 4 How to Know When You Need to Replace Your Charger?
- 5 Buying an Incorrect MacBook charger
- 6 Using MacBook Air Charger for MacBook Pro
- 7 Using a MacBook Pro Charger for MacBook Air
- 8 What is The Difference Between MagSafe and MagSafe 2?
- 9 Are MagSafe L and T interchangeable?
- 10 Connecting Multiple Chargers with MacBook Pro
- 11 How to Identify an Original MacBook Charger?
- 12 Are Fake MacBook Chargers Safe?
- 13 Replacement MacBook Chargers
- 14 MacBook Air Chargers Compatibility
- 15 MacBook Chargers Review – Our 4 Top Pick!
- 15.1 1. Apple 85W MagSafe 2 Power Adapter – Best Pick For MacBook Pro Charger
- 15.2 2. SiliconV 60W T-Tip Connector Power Adapter – Best Pick For Affordable MacBook Charger
- 15.3 3. IXCV 100W USB C Charger – Best Pick For Most Versatile MacBook charger
- 15.4 4. SZPOWER 61W USB C Charger – Best Pick For Most Durable MacBook Adapter
- 16 FAQ
- 17 Final Thoughts
How to Identify the MacBook Model
Before purchasing a MacBook charger, you need to know its model. You also need to know the year and size of the MacBook to select the charger with the correct wattage. Here is how you can find these specifications:
- Tap the Apple logo present at the top left corner of the screen.
- From the dropdown menu, select the topmost option, “About This Mac.”
- Find the type, size, and year of your MacBook below the Overview tab.
Based on these specifications, you can find which charger will be compatible with your MacBook.
Are All MacBook Chargers the Same?
At present, there are 4 varieties of MacBook chargers:
- USB-C chargers- these are compatible with MacBook Air (2018 and latest versions) and MacBook Pro (2016 and newer versions)
- MagSafe 2 power adapters for MacBook Air (non-touch ID)
- L-shaped MagSafe power adapters for MacBooks (2009-2010)
- T-shaped MagSafe power adapters for MacBooks (2009-2010)
There are also several variants of these power adapters based on watts. Different MacBook versions require a different type of charger for proper functionality. When replacing, you must choose a charger with a configuration that coincides with your MacBook laptop.
Inspect Your Charging Cable
The USB-C chargers have separate cables and adapters. These cables have an alpha-numeric serial corresponding to the charger. For instance, a 29/30W USB-C charger must be paired with cables having serial numbers marked with C4M or FL4.
Ensure you have the correct cable connected to your adapter before buying a new charger. Otherwise, you can claim a replacement from Apple. If the charging cable is incorrect, you might not need to replace your charger.
How to Know When You Need to Replace Your Charger?
When your battery is not charging, you must check for 3 possibilities:
The Problem Can Be With the Battery
To check this, tap the battery icon and look at the battery health. If the problem lies there, it will indicate a cross. If it shows normal status, then skip to the options below.
The Adapter Has Failed
Your charger is not working properly or is taking longer than usual. Look for the external cable fray or any melt or bent part of the adapter. Otherwise, there can be an internal problem in the charger circuit, wiring, or AC-DC converter. This means you need to purchase a new MacBook charger immediately.
It can be the laptop’s charging circuit
If the problem persists after the above analysis, you can only charge in shutdown mode. This means that some internal component has gotten damaged. Resetting the System Management Controller (SMC) on your MacBook may also help. This resets the charging-related hardware components like fans, LEDs, sensors, etc. Your last step will be the AppleCare Centre, where you need to send your MacBook for repair.
Buying an Incorrect MacBook charger
Purchased the wrong kind of MacBook charger? Original MacBook chargers will not damage your MacBook. Also, using a higher watt charger than required will not provide you with faster charging. Using a very low-watt charger than required may not charge your device at all.
Using MacBook Air Charger for MacBook Pro
MacBook Air uses a 45W MagSafe 2 charger, and MacBook Pro can be charged using that charger. But using heavy applications will take a long time on the MacBook while charging.
Yet, while surfing and searching, the MacBook Air charger may charge your MacBook Pro but not as efficiently as the original charger. The main reason is its charger’s higher power (60W MagSafe 2 charger) requirement.
Apple recommends charging MacBook with original chargers of different powers, but caution.
Using a MacBook Pro Charger for MacBook Air
As discussed above, MacBook Air has a lower watt charger than MacBook Pro. Using a 60W MagSafe 2 charger in place of a 45W MagSafe 2 charger of MacBook Air will fulfill the purpose.
The high-power charger may even provide faster charging to your MacBook Air than the original charger.
Yet, charging a low-watt requirement MacBook Air with a high-watt charger may affect the battery life. Faster charging will heat the battery and disrupt its overall performance.
What is The Difference Between MagSafe and MagSafe 2?
Both MagSafe and MagSafe 2 are unique in size. MagSafe chargers have two variations, L-style and T-style. MagSafe 2 is a T-style charger.
You can’t swap MagSafe and MagSafe 2 due to their different appearance. MagSafe T-style can be distinguished through its thick connector and shorter lead. The new MagSafe 2 has an extended wire and a thin connector.
Are MagSafe L and T interchangeable?
It is ok to use the L-shaped MagSafe charger instead of T shaped MagSafe adapter and vice versa.
Connecting Multiple Chargers with MacBook Pro
MacBook Pro comes with multiple ports. But, using two chargers for your MacBook does not make it charge faster. This is because the MacBook will only utilize power from the adapter supplying more watts.
How to Identify an Original MacBook Charger?
Can’t differentiate between original and fake MacBook chargers? We have got you covered! Externally the counterfeit charger will have a similar serial number, tags, and appearance to the original one.
Check the System Report and look for the serial number mentioned there. The following steps will help identify the original charger for your MacBook:
- Connect the charger to the AC supply and plug in your MacBook.
- Type ‘System Information’ in the spotlight search bar.
- Scroll down to the ‘AC charger Information’ tab.
- The charger is authentic if the serial number is unique rather than all zeros.
Are Fake MacBook Chargers Safe?
Fake MacBook chargers are unsafe. They have low-quality components, lesser isolation, slow charging, and harm the battery and other MacBook components.
Most fake chargers spark or blast due to overheating. 99% of counterfeit MacBook chargers possess potential safety risks, as per the UL research.
Replacement MacBook Chargers
Replacement chargers are readily available online and in-store. They are an inexpensive alternative that may work fine for you. But these are not UL approved as the original Apple MacBook chargers.
This is because they may cause insignificant damage to your MacBook components. Besides, overheating and rapidly discharging may be the drawbacks of replacement chargers.
Hence, it is better to buy an original charger than to deteriorate your expensive MacBook trying to cheap out on fake chargers.
MacBook Air Chargers Compatibility
Below is list of MacBook chargers and the models they can work on!
MacBook Air Chargers
- 30W USB-C Power Adapter for MacBook Air 13’’ (2018, 2019, 2020) and MacBook Air 13” (M1, 2020).
- 45W MagSafe 2 Power Adapter for MacBook Air 13” (2017, early 2015, early 2014, mid-2013, mid-2012) and MacBook Air 11” (mid-2012, mid-2013, early 2014, early 2015).
- 45W L-shaped MagSafe for MacBook Air 13” (mid-2011, late 2010, mid-2009) and MacBook Air 11” (mid-2011, late 2010).
MacBook Pro 13”/14” Chargers
- 96W USB-C Power Adapter for MacBook Pro 14” M1 Max, 2021.
- 67W USB-C Power Adapter for MacBook Pro 14” M1 Pro, 2021.
- 61W USB-C Power Adapter for MacBook Pro 13”, M1, 2020, and MacBook Pro 13” (2020, 2019, 2018,2017, 2016).
- 60W MagSafe 2 Charger for MacBook Pro 13” (early 2015, mid-2014, late 2013, early 2013, and late 2012).
- 60W L-shaped MagSafe Adapter for MacBook Pro 13” (mid-2012, late 2011, early 2011, mid-2010).
- 60W T-shaped MagSafe Adapter for MacBook Pro 13” (mid-2009).
MacBook Pro 15″/16″ Chargers
- 140W USB-C Power Adapter for MacBook Pro 16” M1 Max 2021.
- 96W USB-C Power Adapter for MacBook Pro 16” 2019.
- 87W USB-C Power Adapter for MacBook Pro 15″, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016.
- 85W USB-C Power Adapter for MacBook Pro 15″, mid-2015, mid-2014, 2013, Retina mid-2012.
- 85L USB-C Power Adapter for MacBook Pro 15″, mid-2012, 2011, mid-2010.
- 60W T-shaped MagSafe for MacBook Pro 15″, 2.53GHz, mid-2009.
- 85W T-shaped MagSafe for MacBook Pro 15″ mid-2009, 2008, Core 2 Duo, glossy.
MacBook Pro 17″ Chargers
- 85W L-shaped MagSafe for MacBook Pro 17″ 2011, mid-2010.
- 85W T-shaped MagSafe for MacBook Pro 17″ early 2009, 2008, 2.4 GHz, Core 2 Duo.
MacBook (not Air or Pro) Chargers
- 30W USB-C Power Adapter for MacBook 12″ 2017, early 2016, early 2015.
- 60W L-shaped MagSafe for MacBook 13″ mid-2010, late 2009.
- 60W T-shaped MagSafe Power Adapter for MacBook 13″ early to mid-2009.
MacBook Chargers Review – Our 4 Top Pick!
Apple 85W MagSafe 2 Power Adapter
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SiliconV 60W T-Tip Connector Power Adapter
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IXCV 100W USB C Charger
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SZPOWER 61W USB C Charger
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Here are our 4 Top Picks when it comes to reliable MacBook chargers.
1. Apple 85W MagSafe 2 Power Adapter – Best Pick For MacBook Pro Charger
This 85W MagSafe adapter is compatible with MacBook Pro 15 inch (2012-2015), Retina display. It enables fast and safe MacBook Pro charging. You can charge your MacBook Pro in all (on, off, sleep) modes with it. You can also operate your MacBook only on an 85W MagSafe 2 Power Adapter without a battery.
It comprises an efficient magnetic DC connector with LED at its head. The magnetic connector ensures proper plugin and safe disconnection of cord from MacBook in case of a sudden pull. It saves the cable against any wear and tear. The LED light changes color from amber to green when done charging.
The 85W MagSafe includes a long AC cord and a compact AC wall adapter. You can use any of the two as per your need.
Users can conveniently wrap the DC cable around the adapter due to its perfect storage design.
Item Weight: 1.1 lbs.
Product Dimension: 12.64 x 4.69 x 1.38 inches.
Model number: MD506LL/A
- LED charging light.
- Long AC cord to reach your workspace.
- AC plug for traveling.
- Bi-directional AC connector.
- The magnetic connector ensures easy plugin and detachment.
2. SiliconV 60W T-Tip Connector Power Adapter – Best Pick For Affordable MacBook Charger
SiliconV presents this 60W T-tip style power adapter. It is compatible with MacBook Pro 13-inch Retina display, MacBook Air 11-inch, and 13-inch Retina display.
The “T” type connector is magnetic in this charger. It enables easy connection and disconnection. The magnetic nature of the connector safeguards both the port and cable in case of an abrupt detachment.
This power adapter has an LED light that shows the charging status. An orange light glows while charging and turns green in the case of a charged MacBook.
It has a long AC cord that is thick to prevent fraying. SiliconV also provides immediate customer service in case of issues. You can contact their customer representative at any time if there is any problem with your charger.
Item Weight: 0.52 lbs
Product Dimension: 5.71 x 4.72 x 1.93 inches
Model number: A60
- 24-hour customer service.
- Fast charging.
- Charging status light.
- Highly compatible with different versions of MacBook Pro and MacBook Air.
- The magnetic connector ensures a secure connection.
3. IXCV 100W USB C Charger – Best Pick For Most Versatile MacBook charger
The USB-C charger is specially designed for the MacBook. It offers compatibility with MacBook Pro (16″, 15″, 14″, 13″) and MacBook Air 13 inch (2018-2021). It is also compatible with devices having a C-type charger, including android smartphones, smartwatches, cameras, iPad, etc.
Compared to the original MacBook Pro charger, it is compact and delivers better efficiency. This adapter comes with a long (7.2ft) C-C cable allowing easy access to your workstation.
This 100W power adapter allows quick and secure power influx, charging the MacBook within 1.5 hours. Smartphones can be fully charged within 20-30 minutes using this USB-C charger.
It is suitable for all environments, including offices, travels, or homes. The additional foldable plug makes the power adapter more convenient to carry anywhere easily.
It has a built-in IC chip and heat dissipation scheme that ensures the safety of connected devices. It prevents overheating, high current, shock, or spark while charging. Each charger is checked and assessed for quality before dispatch.
Users can communicate their issues and queries regarding the 100W USB C Charger. The customer representatives will respond in 24 hours.
Item Weight: 0.63 lbs
Product Dimension: 3.5 x 4.5 x 1.3 inches
Model number: PD-100W
Brand: IXCV (Shenzhen Waweis Technology Co., Ltd)
- Quick charging.
- It is compatible with a variety of devices.
- Safety IC chip.
- Efficient heat dissipation system.
- Long C-C cable.
- Type C cable allows fast data transmission between USB-C devices.
4. SZPOWER 61W USB C Charger – Best Pick For Most Durable MacBook Adapter
This USB-C charger designed by SZPOWER is highly compatible with MacBook Pro (13″, 14″, 15″, 16″) MacBook Air 13″ (2018-2021). It is also compatible with other laptops and type C devices such as android smartphones, smartwatches, cameras, iPad, etc.
It has an automatic recognition system for your device and connects easily. It allows efficient charging within no time. Plus, it is easy to carry around due to its lightweight construction and portability.
This 61W charger is made from high-grade materials approved by UL/FCC/CE/RoHS and is very durable.
Its cable is fray-resistant, and the connector provides harmless detachment upon severe tension, keeping the charging port and MacBook in place.
It has intelligent features that protect your device from high voltage, overheating, shock, short circuit, overload, etc.
Customer services are also available to assist the users with queries related to the 61W USB C Charger.
Item Weight: 0.55 lbs
Product Dimension: 7.28 x 5.16 x 1.93 inches
Model number: PD-61W
Brand: SZPOWER (Shenzhen Power Lighting Limited)
- It offers compatibility with a wide range of devices.
- Fray-resistant C-type cable.
- Easy to carry portable design.
- Allows automatic connection with your device.
- Highly durable adapter material approved by UL/FCC/CE/RoHS.
- Easy plugin and detachment.
- Multiple safety features include temperature control, high voltage and more.
We have provided answers to certain commonly asked questions about MacBook chargers.
Can I Use Any Charger for My MacBook?
USB-C type charging cable is compatible with MacBook. You can use any USB-C charging adapter to charge your MacBook. However, using the original charger provided with the MacBook is recommended. It ensures proper functionality of your MacBook as third-party chargers might be unsafe to use.
Why is the MacBook Pro Charger so Expensive?
There are multiple high-grade components like resistors, transistors, capacitors in a MacBook Pro charger, including a 16-bit processor. This processor aids in protection against high voltages or currents resulting in overheating or smelting.
In such situations, it shuts down to keep you and your Mac notebook safe. Also, the MacBook Pro charger chip has its specific serial number and type. Upon plugin, the MacBook is notified about the charger type and serial number allowing fast charging.
The MacBook Pro charger has quality components ensuring efficient charging and good safety features.
Can I Charge My Mac With a Phone Charger?
The MacBook is a bigger device compared to your phone. A USB-C type phone charger might charge your MacBook at a sluggish pace as it would not provide the required wattage. Yet, it is not a good idea to use a phone charger for your MacBook unless there is no alternative.
Can a Fake Charger Damage a MacBook?
Fake chargers will likely cause damage to the MacBook. They lack the quality and number of components present in the original MacBook charger. They are not only unsafe but inefficient.
Apart from shock, meltdown, and explosion, they may cause damage to the battery or other MacBook components. This will make you ineligible to avail warranty from Apple.
In some cases, 3rd party chargers or replacement chargers may be as good as Apple ones. If you are tight on budget, opt for a charger from a trustworthy manufacturer.
Apple original chargers for MacBook have secure and fast charging features. Yet, they need to be replaced frequently. With the information above, one can make a successful purchase of MacBook chargers. Take note; fake chargers are a complete waste and are proven damaging to MacBooks. Replacement chargers can compete to some extent, but they can never be a genuine alternative to original ones.