Oh, what a tangled web of wires we confront when we open most executive bags these days. That’s hardly surprising when you consider the number of gadgets that most of us carry. There are phones, notebooks, earphones, tablets, e-book readers, power banks, and a host of other devices that so many of us carry along. And of course, with great gadget numbers come equally great numbers of cables and cords, as almost every gadget and gizmo has its own special connecting cable, which often does not play nice with others. For instance, you cannot use an iPhone cable to charge an Android phone or vice versa.
There are other complications too – some cords can be used to charge devices but cannot be used to transfer data from one device to another. And even when it comes to charging, some cables are not very good at handling faster charging speeds. All of which leads to the cord clutter in our bags. You now not only have to find space for all your gadgets, but also the wires that go along with them, and keep time aside for untangling them all.
A one cable solution? Stuffcool that.
There are cables and cords with different charging and data ports on either side of them that have been designed to tackle this mess. But many tend to be poorly designed (some have magnetic port attachments that fall off or get lost) and worse, are often unsafe. You really cannot take chances with a cable that connects your precious devices to a power source.
The Stuffcool Quad 2 4-in-1 is one of the few cable solutions that actually work in these wire-crazy times. It is a one meter long, nylon braided fabric cable, which looks sturdy enough, and also is tangle-free. Stuffcool claims it is unbreakable and flexible, and from what we have seen in about a week’s usage, it certainly is tough. There are no creases where the cable bends, and it never knots up when bunched up and left by itself. The cable itself comes with a handy band for tying it up neatly, something we wish other gadget cables did too. You can easily tie it up and even keep it in your pocket if you wish.
At each end of the cable are two USB Type-C connectors, which will fit into the ports in any device. Each of these USB Type-C connectors has another port connector attached to it as well. So you can change each connector to another – one has a lightning connector attached to it, while the other has a USB Type-A connector. In case you wish to connect the cable to a device with a lightning port (say, an iPhone), all you need to do is fit the lightning connector on top of the USB-C one.
And if you need to connect to a USB Type-A port, just place the USB-A connector over the Type C connector it is attached to. The connectors fit snugly on top of each other, saving you from carrying port-converting dongles and adapters. The area near the connectors and their attachments is reinforced with what seems like tough plastic, so the chances of breakages in that area (a frequent occurrence in many cables) are low. This is a very sturdy product.
iPhone, Android, notebook, tablet… everything works like a charm
Those four connectors – two USB Type-C, one lightning and one USB Type-A – mean that this single cable can be used with a variety of devices. The Quad 2 can actually be used not only as a charging cable, but as a data transfer one as well. You can use it to connect your phone to a power brick or use it to connect your phone to your computer to transfer images or other files. It is a speedy performer too, supporting charging speeds of up to 65W and 480 Mbps in terms of data transfer. It supports all devices with lighting ports (iPhones, some iPads, AirPods), USB Type-C ports (almost all Android phones and tablets, and most new notebooks), and logically should work fine with most USB Type-A devices too.
We used the Quad 2 to charge the OnePlus Nord 2, the iPhone 13 Pro Max, the iPad, the MacBook Air, the Mi and even some Chromebooks. We also used the cable to transfer data from some of the phones to the notebooks and tablets, and to connect a portable HDD to an iPad Mini and to a notebook, and it all worked very smoothly indeed. The cable even charged some of the new DSLR cameras that had USB Type-C ports, and portable chargers too. The bands connecting the lightning and USB Type-A connectors to the USB Type C ports on the cable, are very sturdy and should last for a while – something that is often not the case with other cables where the bands are a little on the flimsy side and often break.
Using the cable is as simple as plug and play – there is no setup involved. All the devices recognised the cable immediately. In fact, the only devices that it could not handle were our 2020 Kindle, our old pair of Sony headphones, and our veteran Nikon P900 camera – because all of them needed micro-USB ports. It also could not handle smartwatches and fitness bands that have their own special chargers. Some folks might also find its 1-meter length to be inadequate, especially in the case of notebooks, but we had no issues with it. Perhaps the brand could have an option with greater length.
For Rs 999, save space in your bag
The Stuffcool Quad 2 4-in-1 comes with an official price tag of Rs 2,199, but has generally been available in the range of Rs 1,199 to Rs 1,499. However, recent times have seen it dip into the three-figure territory, going as low as Rs 999, which is lower than what some brands charge for only lightning cables. Unlike some of its competitors, it also comes with a six-month manufacturer’s warranty.
The Stuffcool Quad 2 works with almost every device you can think of and frees you from the need of carrying multiple wires, as well as the tangle they create. You also do not need to carry any additional dongles or port converters. What’s more, if you have this cable along, you can use it with just about any wall charger – it works fine with chargers with USB Type-C as well as USB Type-A ports. At its current price of Rs 999, this is perhaps the only cable most of us need to buy. Unless we are content with a tangled wire existence.