I'm a bit of an idiot when it comes to these things, so please help

Found 26th May 2008
I have several bits of kit which charge via USB from a computer - a TomTom, an MP3 player etc.

Can I use the car charger that came with the TomTom to charge the MP3 player; can I use the mains charger that came with the MP3 player to charge the TomTom? What am I looking for - volts, watts, positive, negative?

I don't want to blow the units, but I don't want to buy extra chargers if the ones I have will suffice.

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As long as the connection at the other end of the USB matches up, I don't see it being a problem. I frequently use the same lead if all the connections are the same and never had any problems

rd1701;2177873

As long as the connection at the other end of the USB matches up, I don't … As long as the connection at the other end of the USB matches up, I don't see it being a problem. I frequently use the same lead if all the connections are the same and never had any problems



yea you need to check the outputs as i have done this a few times and bricked the wroung batteries. I used my usb charger from my ipod to charge xox batteries, big mistake now they both dont work.

:x

If all the devices you are talking about have a usb plug on them and you are charging them through that USB plug then their power requirement will be identical: 5V at less than 500mA because the power output from a PC's USB socket is 5V at a maximum 500 mA. They will also use the same standard pins on the USB connector - because that's what's on a PC. So you should be able to use a USB charger from one with another.

However, if the devices have a different input for charging from their own supply then they might use different voltages or draw different current through different pins on that connection. For example a rechargable device might charge slowly from USB but more quickly from its own mains power supply because its own power supply uses a higher voltage or supplies more current. It might also use different polarity on the connector.

With power supplies you are looking to match the voltage, match the polarity (+/-) and ensure that the device connected draws fewer Amps or milliamps than the max rating of the power supply. USB has that built into the standard but if you use a supply designed for another connector then you have to check it all yourself or you run the risk of damaging the device, the power supply or both.
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