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For a desktop computer, the power plug always plugs into the socket directly.

However, this doesn't seem to be the case with laptops. It always comes in two parts.

Are there laptop power plugs which plugs into the socket directly?

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closed as off-topic by Journeyman Geek, slhck Aug 18 '13 at 9:27

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Questions seeking product, service, or learning material recommendations are off-topic because they tend to become obsolete quickly. Instead, describe your situation and the specific problem you're trying to solve. Here are a few suggestions on how to properly ask this type of question." – Journeyman Geek, slhck
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Are you asking if the adapter is necessary to include on the cord? If so, then yes, unless the laptop has that portion built in, which I have not seen any modern laptops that are designed that way. The adapter translates the AC power from your outlet into the DC power that the laptop uses. If you just plugged straight in without the adapter then bad things would happen. – MaQleod Aug 12 '11 at 16:03
i believe the dell mini inspiron uses that sort of cord. its a little like an overgrown old-school nokia charger. – Journeyman Geek Aug 15 '11 at 14:28
up vote 1 down vote accepted

The not-so-technical (slang) term for a power cord with the transformer integrated at the plug end (so it hangs directly off the wall socket) is a "Wall Wart"; and they come in many shapes, sizes and capacities.

Wall Wart

Knowing that may help you in searching for a replacement that has voltage and amperage matching what you need for your notebook.

Keep in mind that Wall Warts in higher Wattage ranges (often needed for notebooks) are kind of rare.

You'll want to determine your Voltage and Amperage needs, and then perhaps browse Digi-Key, Mouser or some other electronics parts supplier.

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wait this is cool, do you mean i simply have to plug that thing into the wall and the cable coming out of that thing can be directly inserted into my laptop? – Pacerier Aug 13 '11 at 17:58
@Pacerier - Yes, but the one you need for your specific notebook requirements may need to be bigger than the one in that example picture of a 'wall wart', and may not even exist (again, depends on your device requirements). – Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Aug 13 '11 at 18:01
actually what i'm looking for is a windows charger alike the mac one: you do mean that these things exists right? – Pacerier Aug 15 '11 at 15:06
@Pacerier - I think it was pretty clear when he said that "the one you need for your specific notebook...may not even exist" – Shinrai Aug 15 '11 at 17:25
@Pacerier - No. The difference is that Macs are all manufactured by the same company (Apple), so they've adopted a standard. There is no such standard for the PC market, which has dozens of manufacturers. – Shinrai Aug 15 '11 at 23:01

Your power adapter is not really an adapter, but the power supply of your laptop. In it exists three separate components: a transformer, a rectifier, and a voltage regulator. The transformer steps the input supply voltage down, the rectifier turns it from AC to DC, and the voltage regulator performs the task of ensuring that the output voltage exactly matches what the laptop was designed for.

The transformer is designed so that the minimum supply voltage (usually 110V) will be just enough for the voltage regulator to hit your laptop's voltage. Any higher will simply be taken care of by the regulator. Also, the rectifier doesn't "care" what your mains frequency is (50 or 60 Hz), since they are usually built to support both.

Most of these components need to be very large, since they generate some heat due to losses when converting the power down to an acceptable level. For this reason, it is unlikely that we will ever see in-line laptop chargers which plug into the wall. Think of your "charger" as the equivalent of a desktop computer's power supply unit (and indeed, they share many of the same components).

While it is technically possible to integrate these components directly into the laptop, there is one problem: where does the heat go? Yep, you guessed it, right back into the laptop! So, remember, the big laptop chargers are a good thing - and next time you feel how warm it gets, be thankful that the heat isn't being dissipated into your laptop chassis.

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@techie007 I don't understand your point, it is still the laptop's power supply (as that article states)... – Breakthrough Aug 12 '11 at 17:54
My point was simply that a AC/DC power supply is an adapter (adapts AC to DC in this case), that's all. :) – Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Aug 12 '11 at 20:09
@techie007 you have it backwards. Right from the Wikipedia article you linked to, an "AC adapter, AC/DC adapter or AC/DC converter is a type of external power supply". An AC Adapter is a type of power supply, not the other way around. – cp2141 Aug 31 '11 at 21:14
@cp2141 - I appreciate what you're saying, but Breakthrough had said the "power adapter is not really an adapter", and my point was it IS an adapter. True, the AC adapter is 'a type of power supply', but that doesn't make it (the one in question anyway) any less of an "adapter"; as it adapts unusable AC to usable DC. – Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Aug 31 '11 at 21:23

The primary reason for this is that adapters generally accept any (reasonable) input source, and so you can just take your charger to a country with different electrical outlets and simply swap the line cord rather than having to buy a whole new adapter.

There's no particular reason it COULDN'T be integrated, but if anybody does this, it's uncommon enough that I've never seen it. It's just the way these things are generally made.

EDIT: See techie007's answer for an example of what this would probably look like if you actually found one (it would be more likely than having extra cord length in both directions).

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Don't forget about the additional heat a integrated power adapter would create... – Not Kyle stop stalking me Aug 12 '11 at 15:53
@Kyle - I mean integrated in the sense that the line cord isn't removable from the AC adapter, not that the adapter is integrated into the laptop. I doubt there'd be a significant difference in this scenario (obviously it's external for that reason though!) – Shinrai Aug 12 '11 at 15:54
Not to forget that Apple somehow integrates those. – slhck Aug 12 '11 at 17:02
Somehow? That's larger than my Dell XT2's. . . – surfasb Aug 12 '11 at 22:50
Why the downvote? – Shinrai Sep 2 '11 at 17:28

The charger for the ASUS Vivobook x202e is as small as a phone charger with only one part. It's really cool.

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