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Mollyfromtexas Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

Is there a car charger for the MacBook Pro?


Mac Pro
  • OGELTHORPE Level 8 Level 8 (39,995 points)

    Not one that allows you to connect directly with a vehicles 12 volt system.  You will need a small inverter to connect your power adapter.

     

    That will allow to go from DC to AC to DC.  I have been waiting for a pure DC charger for years, but so far nothing.  Should you find one let me know.

     

    Ciao.

     

    PS. The charger for airplanes is not compatible. (The one sold on the Apple website)

  • ds store Level 7 Level 7 (30,320 points)

    Mollyfromtexas wrote:

     

    Is there a car charger for the MacBook Pro?

     

    Not exactly.

     

    There is the Apple Airline Adpater that takes the 15v DV airline and maintains a previously fully charged Macbook battery, but doesn't charge the battery as it doesn't have enough power like the Magsafe powerbrick adpater does.

     

    One can use the Airline adpater in a vehicle with 12v, it does the same as above, helps prolong the battery but to a slightly lesser extent as it's only 12v instead of 15v.

     

    12v to 110v adapters (thus to use the supplied Magsafe adapter) doesn't work and only can result in frying out your vehicles electrical system in most cases as their cables are not designed to handle that much power draw on the 12v side, just to run the car and a few gizmos like a cigarrette lighter.

     

    If one notices the cable on their vehicles battery, it's very thick, designed to carry a lot of electrons. That is not the case when it get to the 12v cigarrate adapter, it gets very thin. Pulling too many elecrons through a thin wire makes it overheat, it should trip the car's breaker first, but sometimes just a heavy load but not enough for the breaker to jump, will significantly wear out the thin wires and cause vehicle electrical problems.

     

    Using the Airline Adpater in a 12v or using the 12v DC to 110v AC adpater is not approved by Apple and can likely void your warranty if discovered as user inflicted abuse.

  • BobTheFisherman Level 6 Level 6 (11,675 points)

    ds store wrote:

     

    Mollyfromtexas wrote:

     

    Is there a car charger for the MacBook Pro?

     

    Not exactly.

     

    <snip>

     

    12v to 110v adapters (thus to use the supplied Magsafe adapter) doesn't work and only can result in frying out your vehicles electrical system.

    Very interesting. I've been using these for years without issue. Almost every motor home/camper has these. Every auto parts store/depeartment carries these. Would you mind providing a source? I don't want to continue the use of these if there is a problem.

  • GbAg Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi,

    You could use an adapter like this one: http://www.amazon.com/Vehicle-Power-Inverter-Adapter-Black/dp/B0057C8TTA/ref=sr_ 1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1331224334&sr=8-1

    I often loaded my MacBook with a thing like this. It worked, but after an hour, the charger got very hot.

  • ds store Level 7 Level 7 (30,320 points)

    OGELTHORPE wrote:


    You will need a small inverter to connect your power adapter.

     

    That will allow to go from DC to AC to DC.

     

    That doesn't work as most vehicles can't supply enough power on the 12v side.

     

    Some powerful RV's with the engine running, large boats, a portable generator sure, but not most vehicles.

     

    DC to AC invertors are terribly inefficient too.

     

    I have been waiting for a pure DC charger for years, but so far nothing.

     

    There is a hack that takes the Magsafe cable end that attaches it to a 12v to 15v DC (or your Mac's needs) transformer, but again it only maintains a fully charged battery, doesn't charge it.

     

    Again the reason seems to be there isn't enough draw on the 12v side in most vehicles.

     

    If there is enough 12v power then of course a DC to AC adpater is ideal.

  • ds store Level 7 Level 7 (30,320 points)

    GbAg wrote:

     

    Hi,

    You could use an adapter like this one


    I often loaded my MacBook with a thing like this. It worked, but after an hour, the charger got very hot.

     

    Of course, 12v DC to 220V AC is a heck of a jump, your car's electrical system is also taking a beating, you keep doing that and eventually you'll start popping breakers, I know, I traveled cross country for two months (photography) and attempted to charge my MacBook Pro via one of those things.

     

    Good thing my SUV ran with some breakers gone or else I would have been stranded 500 miles from nowhere, the dealer later said it was a built in safety feature and that I was using that inverter to stop using anything like it as the SUV wasn't designed to give up that much power.

     

    Since then I've learned a bit about the subject and the deception these devices are causing the public.

     

    Just because the plug is the same, doesn't mean there is enough power to juice up what your using.

  • ds store Level 7 Level 7 (30,320 points)

    BobTheFisherman wrote:

     

    Very interesting. I've been using these for years without issue. Almost every motor home/camper has these. Every auto parts store/department carries these. Would you mind providing a source? I don't want to continue the use of these if there is a problem.

     

    You have a motor/home camper, basically a RV or recreational vehicle where the electrical system is more robust and designed to accept higher power drawing 12v devices like 12v to 110v invertors and 12v microwaves, refrigerators and the like.

     

    You know your a exception and your vehicle is not a  "car"

     

    The typical car, heck even the typical SUV in my case, doesn't have a robust enough electrical system to charge a MacBook Pro battery only maintain the current charge level with the right adapter.

     

    Those invertor devices are sold without any warning what they can do if used on a vehicle without adequate supply of 12v.

  • BobTheFisherman Level 6 Level 6 (11,675 points)

    Sorry to ask again, I just did a search and cannot find any info saying that vehicle power inverters are unsafe to either the plugged in device or the vehicle. I did find thousands of pages saying these devices work for vehicle 12v  to 110v and that they are suitable for powering laptops, TVs, gaming systems, etc. I did find info saying that any device over 120 watts should not use an inverter plugged into a vehicle's cigarette lighter. Devices over 120 watts should use an inverter connected directly to the vehicle's battery.

     

    So again I wonder if you would please post a source where it says these inverters will cause damage to a vehicle's electrical system..

  • OGELTHORPE Level 8 Level 8 (39,995 points)

    ds store, greetings:  I must have to disagree with you on a couple of points.  You said "That doesn't work as most vehicles can't supply enough power on the 12v side."  The start battery has to produce anywhere from 80 to 160 amps to start a car.  A MBP is not going to require anywhere near that amount of amperage.

     

    The issue stated is simply the number of amp hours the that battery can provide.  12 volts is twelve 12 volts.  If you connect the proper inverter, knowing that there will be a 10%-15% electrical loss (and preferably a pure sine wave rather than a modified sine wave) and it produces 120 volts, your in business.  The cheap inverters that GbAg suggests are totally inadequate for this purpose.  There are good ones available.

     

    Your statement "If one notices the cable on their vehicles battery, it's very thick,  designed to carry a lot of electrons. That is not the case when it get  to the 12v cigarrate adapter, it gets very thin. Pulling too many  elecrons through a thin wire makes it overheat"  The reason for the heavy gauge wiring is for the already mentioned start motor.  Since the MBP is not drawing that much amperage (7 amps DC at best), the wiring can be of significantly thinner gauge. Note the wiring to the instruments and the radio in a car.  We are not dealing with 00 cabling in this case.

     

    Do the math: watts/volts = amps.

     

    Best regards.

     

    Ciao.

     

    PS;  Do you belong to the avatar of the month club?  I liked your last one better.

  • ds store Level 7 Level 7 (30,320 points)

    BobTheFisherman wrote:

     

    I did find info saying that any device over 120 watts should not use an inverter plugged into a vehicle's cigarette lighter.

     

    And a Magsafe could draw as much as 85W so it should fall under that.

     

    However the word "vehicle" is rather vague description to include a wide range of electrical capabilities.

     

    Devices over 120 watts should use an inverter connected directly to the vehicle's battery.

     

    It's because the connection there is thick and can carry a lot of electrons without overheating unlike the much thinner cigarette lighter wires.

     

    So again I wonder if you would please post a source where it says these inverters will cause damage to a vehicle's electrical system..

     

    One should check with their dealer before using any 12v to 110v (or 220v) adapter in their vehicle as a vehicles electrical capability can vary.  Can work in some, but not in others.

     

    Solves that problem.

  • ds store Level 7 Level 7 (30,320 points)

    OGELTHORPE wrote:

     

    Do you belong to the avatar of the month club?  I liked your last one better.

     

     

    It's Apple's newest logo (we believe), just came out yesterday, I'm happy to show it off.

     

    I guess my avatar comes to reflect my current mood with Apple.

     

    I seriously wanted to use the Lion in crosshairs when it was first released, but that would have been too provocative.

  • Flipkay Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    Kensington sells one that is sold through the Apple store.  It's called

    Kensington Auto/Air Power Inverter with USB Ports

     

    Here is the link to it (that I got from the Apple store) customer service representative:

     

    http://store.apple.com/us/product/TW696LL/A?fnode=5a&fs=m.productKind%3Dchargers

  • AndaM Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    ds store, please do your research (and refain from posting if you haven't). Have you ever used an inverter?

     

    A typical lighter plug will allow currents up to 10 amp (it takes more juice than you seem to think to heat up a cigarette lighter). This is enough to power a 100-150W inverter depending on the quality/efficiency. Plenty for a 85 W mag safe adapter.

     

    At the moment of writing this reply, my wife MBA and my own (2 x 45W mag safe) are connected to a cheap 150w inverter and charging hungrily. The inverter is still running cold.

     

    So Mollyfromtexas, don't worry too much, get one of these 100W inverters that come with the standard cigar lighter plug and enjoy.

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