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Travellers' questions that don't fit anywhere else This is an opportunity to ask any question, and post any notice you wish that doesn't fit into one of the other sections.
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  #1  
Old 12 Nov 2011
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Laptop Charging

Ok, so the question is...Has anyone run into issue charging their laptops and other devices with all the different voltages around the world. Going to take my laptop with me and do not want to blow it up. Coming from canada where we use 120V.
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Old 13 Nov 2011
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Does your laptop charge from 12v as well?, if so, charge from a motorcycle 12v socket whilst stationary.
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Old 13 Nov 2011
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Laptops generally have "intelligent" chargers...doesn't matter how much AC voltage goes in one end, they will always give out 18.5 volts DC or thereabouts.

Check the symbols/writing on the charger itself . Hope this helps.
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Old 13 Nov 2011
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laptop charging

Well looked at the charger for my Mac and it says inout 100v-240V 15A. So I assume it can handle anywhere from 100v to 240v. Would probably just need the plug adapters for the various countries. Also like the idea of charging from my bike if need be. Just know that Mac does not make a 12v plug yet.
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Old 13 Nov 2011
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You're reading the fine print correctly: adapters are all you need. There's a potential issue with the absence of a surge protector: if you plug your 110v surge protector into a 220-240v outlet it will be toast instantly. I've given up using surge protectors on the road, including Latin America and Africa, and haven't had any problems yet; all the usual caveats apply.

There are lots of aftermarket 12v adapters for Mac; I've got one in my car with a cigarette lighter plug on it, but you could snip that off and attach any kind of connector.

Mark
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Old 14 Nov 2011
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Laptop Charging

Thanks Mark....I have yet to find an adapter though for a Mac for a car 12V. So think I will get a car adapter that transitions into a normal prong outlet. Then just plug my Mac in on the bike if need be.
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Old 14 Nov 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roameo View Post
I have yet to find an adapter though for a Mac for a car 12V.
Google: "mac car adapter."
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Old 14 Nov 2011
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I have a Dell Studio Laptop and bought a 12V power adapter to plug into the 12V bike supply. However, it does need 90W power rating (7.5A) so you need to check that the 12V on board socket can take that load, I had some problems with a CAN-Bus supplied socket and it would shut down at anything over 5A load. I don't think I would try and charge the lap top while the engine was not charging, unless you are unhappy with the shape of your battery .

Your intelligent charger should take care on Mains Charging, even though you will be on 60Hz frequency, whereas many other regions will be 50Hz. I think the charger will handle that OK.

I have been looking for a system to charge camera batteries and standard AA/AAA rechargeable batteries while on the move on the bike. I don't want to buy an Inverter, though that is an option and USB chargers are not always an option for specialised camera batteries.

Grey Beard
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Old 15 Nov 2011
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Thanks for the heads up. I first need a European to American cigarette adapter ( I have a Triumph tiger with a built in 12V socket) but it is European size. And that adapter says output 5A, so that would create the same issue before I even get to an inverter. Sounds like I just need to make sure I can charge on a main when I can. Then I need to figure how to charge my as well!
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Old 15 Nov 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roameo View Post
Thanks for the heads up. I first need a European to American cigarette adapter ( I have a Triumph tiger with a built in 12V socket) but it is European size. And that adapter says output 5A, so that would create the same issue before I even get to an inverter. Sounds like I just need to make sure I can charge on a main when I can. Then I need to figure how to charge my as well!
Fit a new cigarette type socket to the bike, wired direct to the battery via an in-line fuse sized to take the charger load. Or you can get waterproof connectors and fit the cigarette lighter inside a waterproof pannier, etc. I have been told the external cigarette lighter sockets aren't the most reliable due to corrosion. There is a guy on UKGSer forum who makes up waterproof connectors (PopEye).

Grey Beard
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Old 15 Nov 2011
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I'm probably missing something but are you guys saying you can charge your laptop direct from the bike without an inverter?
Whilst we're on the charging thing do you know where I can get a USB charger for a Pentax D-L192, I've found a car charger but no USB.

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Old 15 Nov 2011
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Yes and no. We are saying the issue is not necessarily using an inverter but the amp load needs of the device if greater than 5A which most auxiliary plugs stop at. As Greybeard said most laptops are at least a 7.5A load.
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