Last year, the 240W USB-C 2.1 standard promised to bring a much higher power output (and up to 40Gbps data), but we had yet to see any hardware on the market. Previously, 100W cables were the highest spec.
Club3D has published images and specs of such 240W USB-C cables (spotted by aviationanalysis), which got me excited for a few reasons.
First, this opens the door to standard USB-C power supplies (PSUs) that could replace the default ones we get with laptops with very powerful CPUs and GPUs.
OEM-provided PSUs do their job just fine, but it’s much nicer when we can use USB-C to charge everything for professional purposes. In a pinch, colleagues can loan power supplies to one another, and we don’t need to bring more USB-C fast chargers for smartphones, tablets, and other laptops.
Secondly, the after-market power supplies are often smaller, lighter, more power-efficient, and with more ports. That’s appreciable when you see how hunky the current 240W PSUs are.
Also, these cables are capable of high-speed data transfer, which is excellent and keeps up with our times. Those who work on 4K/8K videos will appreciate having a 20Gbps or 40Gbps cable on hand for those crazy transfers.
But there’s some bad news. Clud3D has a mix and match of these capabilities going from “charge-only,” 20Gbps, and 40Gbps. Unfortunately, I’m not sure how clearly this will be labeled on the cables. I understand the potential cost differences, but I wish it would be as simple as “240W+ 40Gbps” for everyone, and that’s it.
USB-C + 240W is exciting, but the full potential will be reached when laptop OEMs decide to use such a USB-C port for charging and get rid of proprietary 240W (and lower) once and for all.