Finsix Dart-C charger review: Tiny, powerful, and worth the expense – PCWorld

If you accidentally left your USB-C laptop charger during a layover at Batman Airport (yes, it’s real), consider yourself lucky, because you now have an excuse to upgrade to a much sexier, much lighter power brick, like the Finsix Dart-C (available for preorder for $99.99).

I can’t confirm Finsix’s claim that this is “The World’s Smallest Laptop Charger,” but damn, is it small (approximately 2.5 x 1 x 1 inches) and it punches well above its weight.

As its name implies, the Dart-C is a USB-C Power Delivery (PD) charger, so it’s compatible with most devices that use the reversible USB-C port. A second USB Type A charging port is integrated into the cable. The placement of the second port looks clumsy but fortunately doesn’t add much to the overall weight. There’s also a small LED that glows when the brick is powered up so you know you didn’t forget to plug it in.

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The Dart-C (right) will output 65 watts of power, which is 4 watts more than the larger and heavier Apple MacBook Pro 13 charger (left).

Tiny, sexy, and powerful

Despite it being really not much larger than a cell phone charger, the Dart-C is rated at 65 watts of output, which can power most 13-inch, and smaller, laptops (and even some 15-inch laptops).

Finsix says a very high-frequency power technology helps make the Dart-C so small. That comes with a cost, though: With a retail price of $100, it’s even pricier than Apple’s power bricks, which themselves carry a premium.

Finsix says the higher cost is offset by the fact that Apple’s power brick is bigger and heavier by comparison and doesn’t actually come with a USB-C cable. That means you have to pay $69 for the 61-watt brick and then another $19 for the USB-C cable. PC chargers are generally cheaper than that, but not always by much. The best price I could find for a replacement Asus Zenbook 3 charger was $70. HP and Dell’s chargers push $60, if you can even find them in stock.

While some PC chargers come close to the weight of the Dart-C, the typical wall wart puts out a lot less power and is much bulkier.

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The Dart-C features a proprietary cable with an inline USB Type A port that can output 2 amps.

How we tested

Because USB-C Power Delivery hasn’t exactly had a smooth launch, I wanted to see just how many laptops the Dart-C would actually work with. I gathered up seven different laptops (the same ones used in my previous USB-C charging showdown) from Apple, Google, Lenovo, Acer, HP, Asus, and Dell—companies that represent 80 percent of the notebook market. I added a couple of USB-C phones: the Huawei-made Nexus 6P and Google Pixel XL. I used a Satechi USB-C power meter to measure the charge rates on each device.

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