I had an old 30-pin Apple cable that I used literally for many years with no problems. I got it with my ancient 3rd-gen 15GB white iPod and used it with every Apple device I owned until Apple switched to the Lightning connector. That old 30-pin cable had a much longer plastic collar under the connector housing than the Lightning cables have now, and I think that collar strengthened the cable enough that it didn’t bend and eventually break at the ends. I could see that my current Lightning cable was starting to crack and bend and knew I’d need a new cable soon, so I asked if I could review the MOS Spring Lightning Cable when Sewell offered one to The Gadgeteer. It promised to be much sturdier than other Lightning cables on the market.
Note: All images can be clicked for a larger view.
This is the reason I was interested in trying the MOS Spring Lightning Cable. I was able to use this frayed Apple cable until a couple of days before the MOS Spring cable was delivered. The last time I tried to recharge my iPad with this frayed cable, nothing happened when I plugged the cable in. A wire or connection inside had finally broken from the bending.
And it’s not like I torture my cables. I have a little cord keeper adhered to the back corner of my nightstand where the cable stays until I need it. I sometimes use my iPad when it’s plugged in to the cable, so there’s more stress on the cable than when the iPad is laying in the drawer charging, but I try not to put undue stress on it or stretch it unduly. (In fact, my husband says I’m obsessively careful with my electronics…)
The MOS Spring Lightning Cable doesn’t adhere to Apple’s white-cable aesthetic. I don’t actually care about the color of my cables, though I do think this cable would really look great with the Space Gray and black glass Apple devices. As it is, I think it looks just fine with my gold and white Apple products, too.
The MOS Spring Lightning Cable is 3 feet long, the same length as the standard Apple Lightning cable.
Sewell says: “The Spring Lightning cable features only the best materials to ensure this would be the only charge/sync cable you will ever need to buy. We’re so sure of this that we are offering a lifetime warranty on every MOS Spring cable we sell.” If your MOS Spring cable fails at any time, Sewell says they’ll send you a new one in exchange for the old one with no questions asked.
You’ll notice the packaging displays the “Made for iPod/iPhone/iPad” badge (see top photo), so you won’t have to worry that you’ll plug it in and get the dreaded “this product is not supported” message that cheap cables can cause.
This illustration from Sewell’s website shows the components of the MOS Spring cables. The metal spring reduces strain on the cable’s most vulnerable part, where it connects to the connector’s housing.
Sewell says the woven Exoskeleton Jacket “provides greater protection than anything else we’ve seen for consumer cables. We are offering this jacket type in a clear nylon against a black cable for a classy, futuristic look. Besides adding significant protection to the inner conductor, the jacket also makes it almost impossible to tangle the cable.”
The cable is thicker and heavier than the standard Apple Lightning cable. I don’t have a caliper, so I had to do the best I could with a tape measure, but the MOS Spring cable is about 3.5mm in diameter, including the Exoskeleton Jacket. The standard Lightning cable is just under 3mm in diameter. Not a lot of difference, but the MOS Spring cable does feel sturdier, and it’s a bit “stiffer” than the Apple cable. It’s stiff enough to prevent you from wrapping the cable up too tightly, which should also prevent damage to the wires.
The USB end has the anodized aluminum housing and the carbon-blackened steel spring,
as does the Lightning end. The MOS logo seen here is also on the housing at the USB end.
When I first touched the MOS Spring cable, I thought it was encased with a metal mesh. The Exoskeleton Jacket is actually made of a nylon string that’s similar to fishing line. As I mentioned above, this mesh jacket does stiffen the cable a bit, so you won’t be wrapping it up into a tight little bundle. It may take up a bit more room in your gear bag, but the looser wrap means less strain on the wires inside, so the cable is less likely to suffer a broken wire along the length.
Here’s my iPad Air 2 charging with the MOS Spring cable. You can see that the sturdy spring at the Lightning end keeps the cable from bending sharply at the plug housing. The spring has enough “give” that the weight of the cable causes it to curve, but it can’t fold under its own weight into a nearly 90o angle at the housing like the standard Lightning cable can.
The MOS Spring Lightning Cable is $29.95, which is considerably more than the $19.00 Apple charges for their 3-ft Lightning cable. However, with all the strengthening measures taken with the MOS cable and the metal plug housings, I have the possibility of using this cable for many years, at least until Apple decides to change connector designs again. I just wonder how many standard Apple Lightning cables I’d have to buy over those years, even assuming I get a “free” cable with each new product I purchase. A one-time investment of $29.95 could prove to save me lots of money. If your Lightning cable is bending and cracking like mine did, you’ll probably want to spend a little extra and get a sturdy, built-to-last MOS Spring Lightning Cable.
And non-Apple users don’t have to be jealous. Sewell offers a microUSB version, too. The 3-ft microUSB MOS Spring cable is $18.95; the 6-ft microUSB cable is $24.95.
Source: The MOS Spring Lightning Cable for this review was provided by Sewell. Check their website for more information or to purchase.