USB-C cables were supposed to bring some sort of universal Nirvana to the world of charging devices and connecting PC peripherals. And get rid of the irritation of having to insert a full-sized USB or microUSB cable the correct way. No more upside down cables? No more having to choose between USB-A, Micro USB, and Mini USB cables? It sounds too good to be true.
And it has been too good to be true. USB-C cables seem to suffer from compatibility issues that prevent you from using some cables with some devices. Not all work with chargers. Try to use the wrong USB-C cable to charge your shiny new MacBook and you could see the laptop go up in smoke. The Verge calls USB-C charge cables “playing Russian Roulette with your laptop.”
Enter the new Nomad ultra-rugged 100W USB-C cable.
If you’ve read my posts in the past, you already know I’m a fan of Nomad gear. The company has a well-deserved reputation for designing extremely high-quality accessories. A month ago, I wrote about their Universal cable, my test bench go-to when switching between the multiple USB variations and Apple’s Lightning connector.
Now the company has come out with an ultra-rugged, virtually indestructible USB-C cable.
On the outside, it’s clearly made to last. The three-foot-long cable is far thicker than the USB-C cable that ships with any of your gear, with a coating of braided ballistic nylon. Beneath that is a fire resistant PVC jacket. There’s RF shielding to protect against interference and an extra strong Polyamide core. Beneath it all is extra thick, 20AWG wire. The cable is designed for extremes, including 10Gbps data transfer, 4K video, and 100W total power output. It’s tested to military specs for flexing, surviving 4,000 bends at 150-degrees. The cable also resists tangling, which is always a good thing.
It’s safe to use for fast-charging a MacBook Pro. I use it for charging a Nintendo Switch, something that can be hit or miss with typical USB-C cables.
If you’re nervous about USB-C—especially for charging—then consider picking up one of the Nomad ultra-rugged 100W USB-C cables. At $39.95, it’s more expensive than the cheap ones you can find on Amazon, but it should last forever. You won’t have to put up with pokey data throughput. More importantly, you won’t have to give a second thought about plugging your laptop, smartphone, tablet, or accessory to a USB-C power adapter.
Disclosure: Nomad provided a USB-C cable for evaluation but had no input into this review.