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  1. Thread Author  Thread Author    #1  

    Default We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    This is the item in question that brought this into question: Amazon.com: Mediabridge High Output Dual USB Car Charger For iPad and iPhone (Dual Port High Output Design: 1.0 Amp USB for iPhone; 2.1 Amp for iPad or additional iPhone): Cell Phones & Accessories

    And here is the note on it: Mediabridge Charging Cables and Adapters are sold separately for certain Android smart devices such as the Galaxy Tab, Samsung s3, Nexus, HTC Vivid that require a special charging cable in order to charge in full AC Mode.

    So what is so special about these cables (I assume the ones that ship with our S4 is this special one) that makes them able to charge at 2A that a regular cable would not (do regular ones top out at 1A?). Is it just a thicker gauge of wire to be able to support the additional amp?

    How do I know if the cable I have can give 2A or not? I've seen my phone charge even with only 500mA from a USB port so its not like it NEEDS 2A or nothing happens so that's not a way to test.
  2. #2  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    The way it was explained to me on another forum post was you can have a 2.1amp charger and the phone is 1amp. The charger isn't pushing 2.1 into the phone, the phone is drawing only 1amp from the 2.1 amp charger



    Sent from my HTC One using Android Central Forums
  3. #3  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    And every charger base has info on it about how many amps and voltage it gives out

    Sent from my HTC One using Android Central Forums
  4. Thread Author  Thread Author    #4  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    Yeah the charger that ships with the S4 says its output is 5V 2A.. so I gathered from that, that the phone itself can make use of the 2A to charge. Maybe I'm wrong with that and if so please correct me (with a source )
  5. #5  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    One of my electricians actually just told me that if the phone battery is low percent it will draw that full 2amp from the charger but if it's at a higher full percent of battery then it only draws a portion of the chargers 2amp. All not confirmed because I don't build cell phones though

    Sent from my HTC One using Android Central Forums
  6. #6  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    The way Android phones can tell if they're being powered off a high current charger is that the data lines are tied together. In many chargers this is done internally. In this charger it is apparently not done at all so you need a cable with the data lines tied together to tell the Android phone (or most other USB devices) that it can take more than 0.5A. Apple uses another way of telling whether or not it's an actual USB port instead of a higher current charger.
  7. Thread Author  Thread Author    #7  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by garublador View Post
    The way Android phones can tell if they're being powered off a high current charger is that the data lines are tied together. In many chargers this is done internally. In this charger it is apparently not done at all so you need a cable with the data lines tied together to tell the Android phone (or most other USB devices) that it can take more than 0.5A. Apple uses another way of telling whether or not it's an actual USB port instead of a higher current charger.
    Ah okay that makes sense. So how does one know if the USB cable has these data lines tied together? Is there some nomenclature for it?
  8. #8  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    Maybe I need to get my S4 charger and cable back from my wife.
  9. #9  
    natehoy's Avatar

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    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bojamijams View Post
    Ah okay that makes sense. So how does one know if the USB cable has these data lines tied together? Is there some nomenclature for it?
    Generally it's called a "charging cable" since it cannot carry data (shorting out the data pins means, of course, that no data can pass over the data lines). I don't know how commonly-available they are for sale without an accompanying charger, since a lot of people would see a USB cable and return it when they cannot use it as a USB cable.
  10. #10  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by natehoy View Post
    Generally it's called a "charging cable" since it cannot carry data (shorting out the data pins means, of course, that no data can pass over the data lines). I don't know how commonly-available they are for sale without an accompanying charger, since a lot of people would see a USB cable and return it when they cannot use it as a USB cable.
    If the Samsung cable "can't carry data" how is it that I can use the Samsung cable to sync the S4 with Kies / Data thru my Mac?

    /Confused here lol
  11. #11  
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    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by mayconvert View Post
    If the Samsung cable "can't carry data" how is it that I can use the Samsung cable to sync the S4 with Kies / Data thru my Mac?

    /Confused here lol
    They aren't using a standard data-pins-shorted charging cable, then.
  12. #12  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by mayconvert View Post
    If the Samsung cable "can't carry data" how is it that I can use the Samsung cable to sync the S4 with Kies / Data thru my Mac?

    /Confused here lol
    The cable that Samsung provides is a normal USB cable. They short together the data lines in the charger. This charger does not have the data lines shorted together so you have to buy a special cable that only works for charging. It doesn't really have anything to do with Samsung, this is the normal implementation of higher current charging on USB. It has to do with this particular charger and they likely did it that way to accommodate Apple products, which use a non-standard USB charging scheme.
    erinpac likes this.
  13. #13  
    kasarn's Avatar

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    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    General rule of thumb with most electrics. 1amp for every 1000mah should get you a full charge around an hour.

    Sent from my SPH-L720 using Tapatalk 4 Beta
  14. #14  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    This answer made the most sense to me, since I'm able to charge and data sync with the same original samsung cable. I have a galaxy s4 and noticed slow charging from anything but the original cable. I bought a couple chargers and cables and tried modify them as needed to short out the data lines. I tried both shorting out at the charger usb port and at the device end of the cables. The chargers both claim 2.1A output, but no matter what I did, only the samsung cable charged at full speed. It didn't matter which charger I used, it only works right with the samsung cable. So I think there is something special about the cable. In fact the only micro-usb cable on the samsung accessory site is not compatible with the s4. Not sure what it is, but maybe it's just the size as it's noticeably thicker than the generic cables. Maybe the thinner wires provide enough resistance to charge more slowly, but I'm a little surprised given the length of the cables.
  15. #15  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    After some more digging I found references to people noticing that you can only get the 2A charging current with a shielded USB cable. I've gotten my S4 to charge at 2A with a Galaxy Tab 2 charger using a Motorola USB cable. Apparently I was incorrect about the shorting together as well. I'd guess that you might get 1A charging current that way but not 2A. Samsung apparently has their own resistor divider scheme for the data lines so the cable has to be one that will carry data.
  16. #16  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    Quote Originally Posted by garublador View Post
    The cable that Samsung provides is a normal USB cable. They short together the data lines in the charger. This charger does not have the data lines shorted together so you have to buy a special cable that only works for charging. It doesn't really have anything to do with Samsung, this is the normal implementation of higher current charging on USB. It has to do with this particular charger and they likely did it that way to accommodate Apple products, which use a non-standard USB charging scheme.
    This^ is usually a good way to guess. Not all cables will be that clear, so it's hard to tell, but skipping any that advertise for Apple products gets you a good chance. Beyond that, if it doesn't indicate, read reviews.
  17. #17  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    So I decided to buy a new cable to test the theory of thinner wires being the cause of slow charging and bought a 28/24 awg micro usb cable from Monoprice. I tested it and am now getting about the same charge rate as the original samsung cable. So I guess the 24 awg power wires do really make a difference. I didn't have to modify the wire at all, just made sure to use a high power charger (with the data lines shorted internally). So I guess all you need to get good charge rates is a nice thick cable and high power charger. I'm tempted to see what will happen with the 22awg cable at newegg, but I doubt it'll be manageable being so thick.
  18. #18  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    My new Samsung Note 3 exhibited the same charging issues, with the added variable of the USB3 port and cable on the device. I found that standard micro USB cables will charge, but their is a real difference between them as far as how fast they would charge.Several cheap ones from Amazon would hardly charge at all, others that I had around would work for data and would charge just as fast as the Samsung USB3 cable.It sure would be nice if sellers would have a meaningful way to distinguish the fast chargers from the other ones.
  19. #19  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

  20. #20  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    All USB cables are not made equal. The high capacity /rated cable has thicker conductor for carrying large current and has lower resistance. As more metal is used these will be more expansive than normal charging data cables. So USB cable does impact charging speed.
  21. #21  

    Default Re: We need a special Samsung USB cable to charge at 2amps?

    I have a side job driving cars for automobile dealers and some trips are long. I have had to use my S-4 for navigation and this really drains a battery! I thought I had the correct charger in my go bag but I have had a few surprises. Some of the new cars do not have a lighter socket but most have usb ports. My Samsung cable would not charge my phone using the USB charger socket! So I have done some testing!
    The Samsung charger will not work with all USB cables and the Samsung cable will not work with all USB chargers. I purchased one of those USB testers on Ebay that tells you the voltage and current and it made my experiments easier. I have not found a combination that will actually charge at more that 1000 Ma. Usually my S-4 and Tab 3 charge at around 700 to 800 Ma. If the lightening bolt is seen in the battery icon it is charging at a faster charge rate. If plugged into a USB port on my computer my S-4 charges with about 150 Ma and the lightning bolt is not visible.
    Apple and Samsung use a scheme to tell the phone or tablet that the charger is capable of high speed charging. The two schemes are different in older chargers and Apple chargers may not charge your phone at a fast rate! The little cheap 2.1 Amp rated lighter chargers work fine if used with the right cable. Experiment before you hit the road for a long day.

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