Nomad’s new wireless charging hub is an elegant, all-in-one solution to charge your devices. Whether it is through the 7.5W Qi charger on top, the USB-C fast-charge capable port, or the additional USB-A ports, it is sure to fuel up all your gadgets.
I’m very picky about chargers. There are simply so many different ones out there that it can be hard to find one that accurately fits your lifestyle. I spent the last week testing out Nomad’s new charger to see if it would become my new favorite. Check out the video to see how it went, then read on.
High level overview
If we take a step back, Nomad has really created their take on a 5-output charger. These hubs usually come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, and it was nice to see Nomad take it in a different direction than most.
The charging hub itself is a round disc, that is a bit on the large size. If you compare this guy to nearly any wireless charger, it is chunky. But considering the addition of several USB ports, it can for the most part be forgiven.
Wireless charging has really taken off this past year after Apple pledged their support to the Qi standard, bringing it to their latest round of iPhones. In fact, CES was absolutely full of them. It was nice of Nomad to not only include a wireless charger here, but one that can charge at the ever-so-slightly quicker 7.5W.
The port selection on the bottom is thought out quite well for most people’s use.
There are four ports: one USB-C port, and three USB-A ports. Two of the USB-A ports are capable of 1A, one of them can go at 2.1A, and the USB-C port can handle 3A.
Those two 1A ports are going to be good for smaller devices such as your Apple Watch or AirPods. The 2.1 is enough to charge your iPhone, iPad, or other more power-hungry device.
Lastly, that 3A USB-C is able to fast charge your iPhone 8/8 Plus/X or even a MacBook. That means your iPhone can achieve 50% charge in only 30 minutes. The 15W of power from it is also capable of charging a USB-C MacBook if you need it to.
Smart design choices
Nomad made a few other smart design decisions aside from their choice of ports. Things that really help sell the price tag above other chargers.
For instance, the well-made exterior that is nothing but high quality with a bit of heft. Or the carefully considered cable management system along the back that prevents cables from getting completely unruly.
There is also a glanceable way to tell the status of your charging. On the top of the charger, there is a series of LEDs that correspond to the plugs on the underside. While your gear is charging, it will be amber. Once it has finished up, it will switch to white.
The one thing that I think is pretty brilliant, is the ambient light sensor included just below their wordmark on the front of the unit. The LEDs on top are bright, and can be quite distracting in a low-light environment, so this light sensor will detect that, and lower their brightness.
Charging hub comparison
This isn’t the only charging hub Nomad has in their lineup, having released a similar one back in July of last year. When I reviewed the original charging hub, the iPhone X had yet to launch. Looking back, building a wireless charger into the top totally makes sense.
Other than the wireless charging, the hubs look nearly identical, coming in at roughly the same size and shape.
The ports on the underside have changed slightly, losing one of the USB ports in the process. The old charger had three 1A USB ports, and two 2.4A ports. It also lacked USB-C completely.
While I’ve largely been happy with the hub, I do have to nitpick a few things.
First, while it looks totally great with all of Nomad’s rugged black cables, Apple still doesn’t allow third-party manufactures to product USB-C Lightning cables. So if you want to use Fast Charge on your iPhone, you have to use Apple’s white cable. This is an Apple problem rather than a Nomad problem though.
Second, as an owner of a newer MacBook Pro, I’d love if there was a faster USB-C port. It works great for iPhones and iPads, even the Retina MacBook, but it is not nearly enough power for the MacBook Pro. My 15″ MacBook Pro charger is 87W, which is a far cry from the 15W Nomad supports.
You also have to remember, Nomad is primarily an accessory company for mobile devices, so while this is something I want, it isn’t necessarily in line with their products. Still, it would be a great addition to my desk!
Lastly, the power adapter is a bit on the large size, and depending on your outlet situation, you may have to rearrange things a bit to get it to fit.
While the Nomad wireless charging hub may not be the 100% perfect charging hub of my dreams, it has been the closest so far.
My current setup includes my Mac, my iPhone, my iPad, my AirPods, and a GoPro regularly sitting on my desk. I hate having so many individual chargers plugged in, and these all-in-one solutions really are the answer to that.
I’ve paired my Nomad hub with several of their mini universal cables I’ve been such a fan of, which really keeps the clutter down.
Nomad’s wireless charging hub is on the pricey side, running you $79.95. I think when you consider the additional USB, the 7.5W wireless charging, build quality, and little touches, you can justify the price tag.
If you’d like to simplify your setup, you can pick up the charging hub from Nomad’s website for just under $80.
Let me know what your thoughts are on Nomad’s latest product down in the comments below.