When Julie and I bought our
Fujitsu 2100 laptops last year, we had a full menu of options and
accessories from which to choose. Right off the bat we added more memory,
extended batteries and built in WiFi, but when it came to power management
add-ons, I was a little bit stymied. I knew that I would be using "mini-moi" (to
differentiate from Julie’s "mini-me") as my main computer. This meant that when
I was home it would always be plugged into a wall socket under the desk, with
its cords tightly tied to the plethora of other power cables. But if I went
anywhere, I would have to untangle its power cord and pack it.
With the amount of traveling that I do, I thought it would be nice to get an
additional power cord and a cigarette lighter adapter…until I realized that
that would add an additional $200 to my already costly laptop. I
settled for managing the extended battery the best I could when I was on a plane
or in a car. When it was time to travel, I would pull my desk from the wall,
untangle, unwrap and then pack the power cord. Hey, you do what you’ve gotta do.
If I had thought for a minute that I would keep my laptop forever,
then I might have broken down and eventually got the two different types of
travel power cords. I had been burned in the past making such purchases,
and I knew that when I eventually replaced my laptop that $200 investment
wouldn’t be transferable to the new one..
On top of everything else, when I travel I also bring along at least one PDA
and my cell phone…which means I always have at least two more power
cords to carry.
To begin with, there is the iGo Juice unit, itself. This slim, futuristic
looking charger system allows me to choose from small variety of plugs and cables
in order to charge
my laptop either from a wall or from an auto or airplane power port – all with
the same basic unit.
With the iGo package, you will receive: the Juice, a 7.5 ounce, 5.40"
long x 2.15" wide x 0.85" thick adapter (continuous output of up to 70 watts)
into which all the other cables plug…
From left to right: front then rear views of the Juice, the
5-pin connector plug into which the AC or DC input cord is inserted
You get a three foot long (AC input) cord (100-230 V ~2A 50/60 Hz)…
Note the handy Velcro tie that is attached to the cord for
keeping things neat
You also get a three foot long combination airplane and auto (DC input) cord (11.75-16 VDC
Once again, note the handy Velcro tie that is attached to the
Then there is the six foot long basic power (DC output) cord that attaches to
the adapter, and ends with a removable and/or replaceable
When you order your iGo Juice, you choose from one of two product SKU#s,
depending on which notebook you have. SKU#1 includes tips for Compaq, Certain HP
models, IBM and Toshiba. SKU#2 includes tips for Apple, Dell, certain HP models,
Fujitsu and Sony. According to company literature that I received, "In the
event that a consumer needs a tip that is not included in the iGo Juice SKU they
purchase, and the tip is available, it will be provided to the customer free of
charge." Not too shabby!
From left to right: the plug into which the DC output cord is
inserted, the #11 tip attached to the end of the DC output cord
The removable tip is significant for several reasons. For instance, if there
are more than one laptop in your family, such as is the case with mine, then you
can purchase a tip for each laptop and use the same power converter
whenever anyone travels with their laptop. This also means that when you upgrade
your laptop, if you were to buy a different brand, you could replace the tip
with a compatible model – which would be a substantial savings from buying an
all-new power cord.
All of which comes packed in a handy nylon zippered travel pouch…
The iGo also offers safety features which include over voltage protection,
current limit, over temperature protection and short circuit protection.
So let’s recap what we have so far. The iGo is an interchangeable, portable
laptop travel system that allows you to
1. Charge your laptop via any wall outlet
2. Charge your laptop via any airplane power port
3. Charge your laptop via any 12v automobile (or for that matter, boat) power
Just on those facts alone, this product already had me sold.
At the risk of sounding like some cheesy salesperson on a late-night
infomercial, I just have to utter those overused words, "but wait, there’s
Along the length of the DC outlet cord is a plug into which you can insert
different charging cables for various
mobile phones. This is called the Peripheral Powering System (PPS). PPS
allows you to charge your handheld or mobile phone at the same time your laptop
is charging. PPS delivers up to 7.5 watts of protected power, which company
literature claims will charge three times faster than by using a USB charging
From left to right: The Palm universal connector PPP cord, the
PPP plugged into the DC out cord
I received a Palm Universal charging cable with the iGo Juice, and I must say
that I am impressed with the way it operated. The only downside to a cable-only
charging system is that you can’t sync with the same cable. I have been using
this unit for almost two months, and during that time, this was the only con I
could come up with. To me, that really says something about this product.
So in addition to the three charging scenarios that I listed previously, we
can now add the following:
4. Charge your handheld while charging your laptop
5. Charge your mobile phone while charging your laptop
See what I meant about killing five birds with one stone?
Truly, this product is worthy of all of the accolades I have heaped on it. If
ever there was a no-brainer addition to any road warrior’s bag, I
believe that the iGo Juice would be it.
You can purchase the iGo from their webpage,
by phone (800.DIAL.IGO), or from various computer retailers.
Allows you to leave your laptop’s stock power cord hooked up at your desk
Allows you to charge your PDA or phone from the same cord powering your laptop
Extremely convenient way to have AC or auto/air charging from the same unit
Tips are replaceable and changeable – if you upgrade laptop, you can get the
correct new tip
Self contained in a packable travel pouch
PPS only allows charging, not syncing of your handheld