The world’s FASTEST phone charger (SuperVOOC explained)


This is the OPPO Find X. And I’ve seen a dozen reviewers get excited about
this bezelless screen or the bonkers motorized camera, but all of that stuff is
way too fragile for my clumsy hands. What I’m excited about… is SuperVOOC. The fast charging tech that OPPO claims
will be two and a half times as fast as anything else that is on the market right now. If this actually works as advertised, it could completely change how we use our phones. So, let’s take a closer look. And thanks to Squarespace for sponsoring this video. OPPO claims that SuperVOOC gets the Find X
with its average sized battery fully charged in under 35 minutes. Competitors usually take well over one hour
for the same, which really poses 3 questions. Does SuperVOOC actually work as advertised? If it does, how the hell is it this fast? And what are the downsides? Starting with the first one, I have performed two separate tests. Comparing charging speeds to the latest
flagships once with the screen on and once with the screen off, you’ll see in a second why that is important, but first, let’s talk about chargers. Each of these phones came with their own fast
charger in the box which I used, except for the iPhone, where I had to
buy a separate fast charger from Apple for 98 Euros. Which, uh, is quite a rip-off if you ask me. Also, I have the SuperVOOC version of the
Find X here, but some markets only get normal VOOC on this phone, so always check with your
local reseller. Anyway, here are the results. In the screen off test, the Find X goes from
nearly empty to 100% in just 31 minutes, which is pretty incredible. The closest competitor is the P20 Pro that
takes about 2.5 times as long as the Find X, and the other three are more or less equal, taking around three and a half times as long to finish. Quite the difference. Now, to be fair this chart might be somewhat
misleading since battery sizes differ a lot between these phones, so I measured how much
each charger consumes at its peak using a smart power plug to show you the difference
that way, which still shows SuperVOOC as the clear winner, and I also calculated how many
milliamperes each charger pumped into the phone at its peak. Again, the winner is pretty clear. OK, in test number two we set the screen to
50% brightness on each phone to add an extra source of heat, because OPPO claims that SuperVOOC
deals with heat really well, so it can keep fast charging even with the screen on, while
some competitors will have to disable fast charging in these situations. And the results kind of show this to be true. The Find X once again finishes charging in
33 minutes, just a tad slower than before, surprisingly the P20 Pro seems to be completely
unaffected by the screen being on, the iPhone does OK until 80 % but then slows down dramatically
to over 2 hours, and the other two essentially turn off fast charging completely and take
over two and a half hours to finish. That’s more than 5 times as slow as the SuperVOOC
did. Next, let’s take a look at temperatures. The Find X goes up to nearly 38 degrees, but
of course it doesn’t have to stay there for very long, the P20 Pro goes a little higher and
stays for longer, the iPhone X is over 39 degrees for more than 40 minutes, which is
probably why the phone decided to slow down its charging so dramatically at one point,
and probably also why Apple doesn’t include a fast charger in the box. Cause that is not healthy. The other two, well, those were pretty cool
because they weren’t fast charging at all. So from all the phones that did fast charge,
the Find X is the coolest and has to stay hot for the shortest amount of time. Not bad. Which takes us to question 2: What black magic does OPPO have that the others don’t have? So I’ve done a lot of research online, I’ve actually talked to a couple of OPPO engineers and here are all my findings. You can the really in-depth stuff linked in the description below, if you really like physics, but if you just wan to see an overview, an oversimplified overview, then follow along. Charging speed is measured in watts, which
is a product of voltage and current. The more watts, the faster your phone charges,
so if either of these goes up, charging speed goes up as well. Whether charging speed is seen as regular
or fast depends on who you ask, but for the sake of this video let’s call 5V 2A charging
“regular” for now. That’s a very common spec and note for later, 5 Volts is also the voltage of most smartphone batteries. That’s a pretty important detail. Most standard fast charging solutions like
Qualcomm QuickCharge increase speed by increasing the voltage to 9 Volts, which
is indeed faster, but introduces an issue. Heat. Because on top of the heat that is generated
from charging alone, these solutions also require the phone to transform the incoming
9 Volt charge down to a 5 Volt charge inside the phone to match the voltage of the battery. This causes extra heat, so these phones now
have 2 major sources of heat. More sophisticated chargers like OPPO’s VOOC
and OnePlus’ Dash Charge, which, fun fact, are the exact same technology just under two
different brands, but also Huawei’s SuperCharge, which is what the P20 Pro has, instead increase
speeds by increasing the electrical current, usually to somewhere between 4 to 5 amps,
while keeping the voltage at a standard 5V. The benefit is that not only can they charge
faster, at around 20 Watts, the phone also doesn’t have to step down the voltage, so
the extra heat isn’t generated in the phone. In other words, these chargers eliminate the
second source of heat. SuperVOOC takes this approach to the next
level and here is how some OPPO engineers explained it to me. SuperVOOC introduces 10V5A charging. That’s right, 50 Watts. That’s as fast as some laptops charge. And despite seeming like this is really high
voltage charging, it’s not. See the Find X has a special, 10 volt battery
with two 5V cells inside. So when it receives the 10 volt charge, there
is no conversion and through it, no extra heat generation. This special battery can then output just
5 volts for the phone to use. So you can essentially think of SuperVOOC as
simultaneously VOOC fast charging two separate batteries and then only using one at a time
for the phone. Again, this is a super dumbed-down explanation
and if you want to know all of the details, check the links, but I hope you get the point. Okay, on to number 3, the downsides: I can
think of two main ones. The first one being cost: SuperVOOC probably
took millions of dollars to develop, it requires lots of extra components, like 5 different
additional security layers, a pretty bulky charger and a significantly thicker cable
than usual, so it adds to the cost of the device a lot, which is why you only see it on expensive phones, and replacement chargers will
probably also cost a fortune. Although they will probably still be cheaper
than the ones from Apple, sooo … khm. Okay, second is safety. And this is honestly hypothetical downside,
but without long term testing, we honestly have no idea how safe SuperVOOC really is. OPPO does have 2 pretty solid counter-arguments, specifically that, No. 1, since SuperVOOC runs cooler than many competitors and does so for a much shorter period of time, your batteries get damaged less from heat, and that No. 2 since it’s
essentially the same tech as their previous generation VOOC charger, which sold in about 90
million phones without any major safety issues, it should be just as safe… And uh, sounds
good to meee, but you know, I’m not an engineer, so I guess we’ll just have to wait and see. Now, the Find X is like a trophy. It looks incredible the technology that is built into it is incredible, but ultimately for a person like me, who drops his phone all the time, this just isn’t a very practical option. I mean, it’s so slippery, it slid off a perfectly
flat surface four times since I’ve had it, plus even if you put a case on it, it doesn’t
cover the top two corners. Now that’s a phone that just calls for a TechAltar
Ungrip if I’ve ever seen one. But shameless merch-promotion aside, SuperVOOC will probably come to much less slippery OPPO phones in the future and also OnePlus phones at some point, and all of that combined really has me excited. But maybe you disagree? There’s a poll in the description below where
you can let me know how you feel about the Find X. Which features you like, which ones you don’t, and I’ve built this poll it in about 3 minutes using Squarespace. Putting together a website for whatever you
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