Choosing the Right USB-C Cable for Your Devices

Posted by Angus Jones ,30th Sep 2023

Which USB-C cable should I buy?

With the release of the iPhone 15, we finally have a common cable to charge smartphones. The USB-C plug has become a standard on smartphones, cameras, drones, earbuds, tablets, monitors, PCs etc. Whilst this is good news for all consumers, not all USB-C cables are created equal. So which USB-C cable should I buy?

USB-C is an industry-standard connector for transmitting both high speed data and power on a single cable. A USB-C connector can be plugged in either direction to avoid confusion and sometimes married with another plug type most commonly a USB-A plug on the same cable.

Why might my current USB-C cable not be right?

In a previous BLOG, we looked at the technicalities of USB. Let's avoid the technical jargon and consider what will work best for your needs. The latest smartphones will boast just how fast they can be charged. Even wireless headphones might say you can get two hours of use from a 5-minute charge. If you buy a new PC or tablet, they also come with a USB charger. All these devices differ in how much power they need to charge their batteries and the power or wattage the cable needs to supply.

As USB cables have improved over time, their ability to provide more wattage has also increased. If you are like me, you might have a drawer full of cables or cables spread across your house and car. Most of these cables look the same, but their performance differs.

One cable might take an hour to charge a smartphone and another 6 hours.

Similarly, with power improvements, the speed at which you can transfer data with that cable has also increased. You can connect your latest PCs to your latest monitors with a USB-C cable, but if the cable is not of the right quality, there will be no or a poor pictureYou might ask how do I tell the difference. The answer to that was written on the packaging the cable came in, which is probably long gone. You can, of course, test by timing how long it takes to charge from a similar battery level or download an app that will tell you the charging rate, but at the end of the day, it might just be easier to invest in some new cables that you know will do the job both now and into the future. USB-C cables are cheap compared to the items they are charging.

What do I need to know about USB-C cables?

Buying a quality USB-C cable incorporates the latest standards and is fully backward compatible. You can purchase higher-performing cables that carry more power and faster data, providing future-proofing.

Although a USB-C cable looks the same on the outside, the quality of the cable and the number of pins and wires inside the cable governs the cable's ability to transfer power and data. To get the most out of a USB-C cable, there would need to be a USB-C connector on each end.

The most common cable available has a USB-A connector on one end and a USB-C on the other. This makes sense since most cars, chargers, PCs, etc., have a USB-A socket. For most applications, this is fine.

Recommended USB-C cable for best results

Laser makes a range of USB cables available at Big W and has removed the mystery of choosing the right cable.

By understanding the type of device you want to charge and the power it will need to charge, you can pick the cable that best suits your price bracket and needs.

A basic cable will charge at up to 18w is inexpensive and will charge most smartphones quickly.
More premium cables allow charging between 30W and 100W lets you transfer data faster, power a tablet or a super-fast-charging capable smartphone.

A top of the line cablehas the ability to charge up to 240W ensures your cable will do everything the current standards allow and will see it tackle any need for the foreseeable future.USB-A plug on left USB-C plug on right

  • Cable length: A 2-meter cable is great for reaching the lounge when watching TV, but a 50-cm cable may be perfect for your car.
  • Fashion: Colour and design may be important for you.
  • Strength: Some cables are built to last and come with a durable braided cable.
  • Connectors: Beyond USB-C and USB-A, you can also have the same connector at right angles, which can be more streamlined when connecting to a PC or holding a phone whilst charging.
  • Technical: The geek in you can have a digital readout showing the current wattage draw.

Which USB charger should I buy?

The USB-C cable is only one part of the equation. If we have a cable capable of charging a laptop but a charger designed to charge a 10-year-old smartphone, it simply will not charge a PC.

The cable and the charger do make a difference.

Even the socket you connect to on your PC can affect how fast your smartphone will charge. Chances are that connecting to the USB-C socket will be much faster than the USB-A socket. USB-A sockets in cars are notoriously slow, and if you use your phone for navigation while driving, you might hardly even charge your phone.

To charge your latest device faster or perhaps a tablet needing higher wattage (more power) with USB-C, you need a charger to support the device's needs. When choosing a USB-C wall charger, ensure the wattage output is large enough to support your device. You need to ensure your cable and charger match this minimum requirement

Don't forget your car. A higher-output cigarette lighter car charger can quickly overcome your charging needs in your car to ensure you have the charge you need when you arrive at your destination.

One last consideration when selecting a charger is understanding that if a charger has more than one USB outlet, the power will be shared between both plugs. If you charged two phones simultaneously with a single 30W charger, each phone would only receive 15W each, resulting in longer charge times. A 60W charger, in this case, would be more suitable.

Cables are just too much of a hassle.

Convenience also comes into this equation, and wireless charging of our devices means you do not have to plug a cable into your wireless charging compatible smartphone. You can use a wireless charger where you lay your phone on a charging pad, and it will charge the battery wirelessly.

wireless charger is convenient but also limited to how much power it can deliver, meaning there is a compromise on possibly how fast your device will take to charge.


To help you work out which cable is right for your device Laser has colour-coded the USB cable description to help you choose the right cable for your device.

The latest USB-C to USB-C cables which support the latest model Apple 15 and Androids are coloured Green.

o fit a USB A socket you will need a USB-A to USB-C coloured Red.

For an older iPhone, you will need a USB-A to lightning-coloured Purple.

Old devices using a Micro USB to USB-A are coloured Blue.

Remember to also check the wattage and data speed to match your needs.

Which USB cable should I buy?

The USB cable you already have may not give you the performance your latest smartphone can provide. Maybe you bought an iPhone 15 and are converting to USB-C and need extra cables.

You must invest in cables that will charge your device correctly and give you the best functionality. Laser's new range of cables makes selecting the right cable to suit your device and your usage needs simple.

Having the wrong USB-C cable, even though it fits, can significantly extend your charge and data transfer times. Just as important is to pair your cable with a charger that will provide enough power to meet your device's charging needs. Your right USB-C cable is waiting for you now from Laser and Big W, don’t be fooled by expensive cables at speciality shops.