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[What Does The Team Think...] About Power Sockets With Built-In USB 5V?

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
I need to replace a double switched outlet because one of the switched has got stuck (weird - at least it's stuck ON).

A thought crossed my mind to replace it with one with built-in USB power, and then some doubts crept in: powerful enough to charge current and conceivable devices; how efficient it is and what its zero-load consumption is; risk of fire due to failure; MTBF... aargghhh! V. the convenience of not having to move USB power adapters around; not having one occupying a socket.

My present regime is not exactly the epitome of modern convenience: my Samsung phone charger permanently plugged in out of the way on the wrong side of the bed and a very long USB cable... fine for the phone charging overnight, not so good for the iPad (via a handy little USB-Lightning adapter, which will charge but very slowly), and which may get turned off at the wall if I remember (for fire risk reduction, and then have to fumble around to turn it back on again).

Putting it on an RC socket would be overkill - the RC socket itself could use more power than the charger with zero load, and its handset needs batteries.

Paralysis of Analysis. :sigh:
 

MikeSh

Well-Known Member
and then some doubts crept in: powerful enough to charge current and conceivable devices; how efficient it is and what its zero-load consumption is; risk of fire due to failure; MTBF... aargghhh! V.
Yes, those are my concerns too. I would certainly buy something reputable and/or from a reputable supplier (I use TLC for most of my mains power needs).
But as it happens the sockets in our house (except the kitchen which we recently completely revamped) are appallingly badly placed and short on numbers, so all the charging is done from extension leads to get the 'sockets' somewhere that isn't behind furniture. So using a 4 or 6 way solves all the problems.
 

Wallace

Traveler 34122
I did something similar a about 18 months ago. Replacing an 'ordinary' switched double-gang socket for a something similar but with two 3.1A USB outlets.
It has worked very well, however, recently I have noticed that some of my WiFi [2.4GHz] smart plugs have been loosing their conectivity. Using a good old AM radio, I discovered that the USB socket was generating some RF interference, even without anything connected. An Identical USB socket downstairs, was not. I deduced that the unit was failing and decided to put the old, non-USB socket back.
Since then, my smart plugs have been stable.
Although they do seem convienient, I am now not so keen to have something like that hard wired into my home wiring circuit. The only means of isolation is at the consumer unit.
 

Ezra Pound

Well-Known Member
I wouldn't go for the built-in option, for the reasons already mentioned, also USB socket wearing out, I would opt for the nearest plugable (and switchable), options e.g.:-

3948
 
OP
Black Hole

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
Another pro: the number of sockets taken up by 5V wall warts. However, the case anti is certainly in the ascendant.
 

Trev

The Dumb One
But you implied that you mostly leave your USB charger on all the time, so what's the difference?
 

Ezra Pound

Well-Known Member
Interestingly, in post post #4, the right Nikon 600mA draws 0 Watts (<0.1W), the centre Samsung 2000mA also draws 0 Watts (<0.1W) and the left no-name 300mA draws 0.8 Watts all with no load, note this is true Watts not VA
 
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