If you’re a bit of a scatterbrain like me when it comes to your knick-knacks, you’ve likely spent a good chunk of your mornings scrambling to find chargers, ports and cables – anything to get your gadgets some much-needed juice – just to get your gear prepped up and ready for the day. I guess I’ve never really quite adapted to the use of cable organisers despite everyone telling me to get my cables in order, so having a single be-all-and-end-all charging hub in one place for all my charging needs is a viable solution.
Thankfully, the kind folks over at Acefast reached out with their Z4 PD218W charging hub, boasting four charging modes and a powerful 218-watt capacity in a single handy-dandy device. I can’t say it’s solved my neverending quest to organise my stuff forever, but it’s a huge leap forward when it comes to my hopelessly chaotic cables.
LOOK AND FEEL OF THE ACEFAST Z4 PD218W CHARGING HUB
I’ve always had a soft spot for thingamajigs that have transparent aesthetics, and Acefast seems to know exactly how to appeal to gamers in that respect. While the Z4 hub offers a sleek, no-nonsense, UV nano-coated surface with a simple Acefast logo on top, the main ports sport a nifty transparent design where you can see all the powerful machinery chugging along underneath the hardware. Aptly labelled with an “explore the future” tagline, the transparent design also gives you indicators on the output ports, with C1, C2, C3, and A1 labelled accordingly.
These indicators come into play with the hub’s 1.3-inch TFT Color Screen, where you’ll see just how much juice the charger can power your devices with. The display also adjusts its brightness automatically depending on your surroundings. As I mentioned earlier, there are four modes to cycle from based on your needs, which I’ll get to in more detail later on.
As for the power input, I appreciated how the plug is rocking a diagonal space-saving design that keeps it from blocking other outlets in its vicinity. This isn’t always the case with most of the chargers I have, so it’s a godsend especially since space is a rapidly decreasing commodity at home. The hub itself is dirt-resistant and boasts a sturdy flame-retardant material; however, it isn’t the most portable thing to lug around, weighing in at a hefty 655g, give or take.
ACEFAST Z4 PD218W CHARGING HUB PERFORMANCE
The stars of the show here are the aforementioned charging modes, which you can cycle through using a single button. You can check the exact maximum watts per mode on the official website, but essentially, the idea here is that you can switch up how much power you want each port to provide you with without having to keep unplugging and rearranging the actual cables themselves. For instance, if you want the first USB-C port (C1) to power up your laptop (which I did), you can set the charging mode to 100w max on C1, 65w max on C2, 30w max on C3, and 18w max on A1 (which is a USB-A port).
One thing to note is that these are the maximum watts for the hub’s output – just because you’ve plugged something into the 100w C1 port doesn’t mean it’ll automatically pump 100 watts of power into your device. This is where the smart chip comes in, as the hub can intelligently determine and compute how much power it should allocate to your devices to keep things efficient.
While the GaN technology speeds up charging times with a higher capacity compared to non-GaN chargers, the Z4 hub also employs smart AI tech with temperature control. This essentially makes sure that things don’t overheat and that you don’t end up overcharging your devices, but during testing, the hub did feel hot to the touch in my experience. This was when I had all four ports charging four different devices at the same time, with two of them on max capacity. It wasn’t alarmingly hot, but it’s something to consider when you’re looking for a snug corner to put your hub in. It’s always a good idea to keep it in a more well-ventilated place just to be extra safe.
That said, it’s also best to consider whether or not you have the cables to support the hub’s powerful output, because no matter how robust the charging hub is, it’ll all go to waste if you don’t have the right cables to match.
WHAT’S THE APPEAL?
During my test runs, I always made sure I had all four ports running. I didn’t encounter any issues charging any of my devices. Among others, I tested a Samsung S21 FE, a Redmagic 9 Pro, a Lenovo Legion R7000 laptop, and even the pass-through charging on the GameSir G8 Galileo. It also works on iOS devices as my iPad mini had no problems on it, either. As you can see from my output tester below, most of my gadgets didn’t need to hit the max 100w capacity of the ports, though – which is probably what most users will experience as well.
I mean, I honestly don’t think I’ll be needing the maximum capacity of each port (and with all four of them at the same time) on a daily basis, even less so the need to switch up different charging modes all the time. For the most part, I was happy with just Mode A on a regular day, so while the option to change different modes is a nifty trick to have up my sleeve in case I do need it, it’s not the most urgent concern I have, especially since the hub has a pretty high price tag.
Of course, the hub does save me the trouble of rearranging ports and it saves time by being a single hub for all kinds of gadgets, and I think that’s the most useful feature it has – at least in my case. It also looks hella cool, to be honest, and while I won’t be carrying it along with me in my purse everywhere I go, it’s a nice staple to have on my desk whenever I need to power up any of my mobile gadgets.
The Acefast Z4 PD218W charging hub is now available for purchase from the official website at $199. It’s currently at a discounted price of $139 or your local equivalent.