plug differences

Old Aug 26th, 2017, 07:43 PM
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plug differences

Am traveling to Norway and mainland Europe. Know that I need the plugs with 2 round prongs but the big converter one I have says it is only for irons, steamers and hair dryers. The small one does not say if it will work for computers, phone chargers, cameras, and curling irons. We burned out a curling iron on last trip many years ago. How do I know if the small ones works for computer and such? And if it does, is there a multi plug that we can use for several American items at one time or do I buy several of the small plugs so we can charge several items at the same time? Thanks!
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Old Aug 26th, 2017, 08:14 PM
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Most modern low-current power adapters (computers, phones, cameras) are "dual voltage" so will work automatically on either 110v or 220v. All they need is a simple plug adapter, not a "converter."

To verify that any power adapter you will plug into it will work on 220v with the simple plug, look at the specs on the adapter itself. The writing is probably really small; if you can't read it, use a phone camera to magnify it. It should clearly say 110v-240v or something like that.

Curling irons, hair drivers, etc. use a lot more power than those little chargers and often aren't designed to work on dual voltages - and therefore, they need the bigger "converter" not the little simple adapter.
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Old Aug 26th, 2017, 08:18 PM
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Anything that is heat-producing, like a hair dryer, needs to be dual voltage (you move a switch on the device) and you can use any plug adapter that fits. If it isn't dual voltage it will most likely burn out using twice the current it was made to use.

All relatively new electronics - phones, laptops, tablets, have built-in dual voltage capability for charging and, again, use any adapter that fits the device plug and the wall socket.
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Old Aug 26th, 2017, 08:19 PM
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Sounds like you are conflating adapters and converters. Adapters let you plug your devices into an outlet with different shaped receptacles (flat blade, round prongs, etc.) but do not alter the voltage which in Europe is typically 220v and in the US 110v.

Most small electronics (cameras, phone, laptop, etc.) these days do not require a convertor and will work with just an adapter. To be certain look at the label and see what it says for "Input." If, as is likely, it says 110-220v you are good to go with just an adapter. You can use just one adapter to plug in a mini power strip you can use to charge multiple devices. http://www.belkin.com/us/p/P-BST300/ is one (you can find it cheaper on Amazon)

Appliances like hair dryers or curing irons are notorious for burning up unless they are true dual voltage. And when used with a voltage convertor they often operate suboptimally - too hot or cool. Your best bet is to buy a decent dual voltage appliance or buy one in Europe designed for the local voltage and just use it for travel.
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Old Aug 27th, 2017, 02:29 AM
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Thank you so much. I now understand the difference between an adapter and a converter!
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Old Aug 27th, 2017, 04:04 PM
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It depends where you are staying. Some of the places we've stayed only have one or two outlets, not enough to charge all our cameras, phones, tablets, so we carry a mini-power strip like this:

https://www.google.com/search?q=mons...obile&ie=UTF-8

The Nuremberg Hampton I stayed at in May had an outstanding number of outlets, more than the similarly modern Linz Courtyard.
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Old Aug 28th, 2017, 09:07 AM
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A lot of devices use a usb charger, so I bought an EU plug multi-usb charger for my next EU trip. the devices' usb cords plug into it and I can charge 4 at once. EBay had everything.
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Old Aug 28th, 2017, 10:38 AM
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Personally, I wouldn't trust one of those multi-usb charges to provide enough power to charge four devices at once. My Amazon Fire tablet, for one, is picky about charging; if I simply plug it into my laptop, it says it will charge slowly because there isn't enough power. I need to connect it up to a charger that can provide enough current to charge it properly.

I simply take two European plug adapters with me as well as two US "triple outlet cube adapters" that turn one US plug into three. With just one power outlet in a hotel, I can charge three things at once, but I have two of these European adapters and two cube adapters, so I could charge up to six things (don't need six at once though - but I sometimes charge phone, tablet, and camera battery and might also be using my laptop).
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Old Aug 28th, 2017, 02:18 PM
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I was aware of the slow charging with multi-chargers, but not carrying 3 chargers plus a cube plus an adapter is a decent trade off. I figure an overnight charge instead of an hour is OK for me.
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Old Aug 28th, 2017, 02:24 PM
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I can see how that might work for you. Wouldn't work for me; I can't charge my laptop or my camera battery over USB, so I'll need the adapter + tiny cube anyway. And there are times when I do want to get a quick charge on my phone or tablet in say an hour vs. having to wait overnight.
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