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Complete Data Power Pack Review
By Ed Hardy
The whole purpose of a handheld is to make its user more portable. However the benefits of portability come to an end if you run out of power on a trip. You can lug your cradle along and plug it into a wall socket but there are plenty of places where that isn't an option. Enter the Complete Data Power Pack, which is available from Proporta. It can help you recharge your Palm from almost any source.
It really lives up to its name; It is nothing if not complete. You can use it to recharge from a 9 Volt battery, a computer's USB port, a car's cigarette lighter, the power sockets they put on airplane seats, or even a regular wall socket. All of these will work with any model that uses Palm's Universal connector, like the m500 series, the i705, or the m130.
The Power Pack has quite a number of parts which can be assembled in different ways to allow you to use different charging methods. There are enough pieces and parts that it all comes in a zippered case.
9 Volt Battery
Batteries aren't designed to be used in a single continuous session, so you won't get your best results from plugging a 9V into your Palm and leaving it there until it is empty. I charged an m505 for 20 minutes, let it rest for 20 minutes, and repeated the process until I had a full charge. This worked well and a single 9V was able to fully charge the handheld. I'm not sure I would have if I'd just plugged it in overnight.
Despite this, the USB function won't be ignored. It is the "Data" in the name "Complete Data Power Pack". You can HotSync your handheld with a laptop with this USB cable, which I think business travelers will find very useful. But when you are done, plug in the wall socket adapter or one of the others and recharge that way, It will go a lot faster.
Car Cigarette Lighter
With the Power Pack you can keep your handheld recharged between stops or use your handheld for hours at a time on a long trip.
A cigarette lighter must put out a decent amount of juice. I found that 30 minutes of charging, I had a 70% charge. It took a bit over an hour to get up to 100%.
Sorry, I didn't go on a plane flight when I was testing the Power Pack so I couldn't test this function..
You might even find this adapter useful for some of your other computer peripherals, as it lets you plug a USB cable into the wall. Be careful, though, and make sure the output amps and volts match up.
If that is too rich for your blood, Proporta also offers the Double Power Source Emergency Charger for about $25. This is variation of the Power Pack that lets you recharge your Palm from a 9V battery or a car cigarette lighter.
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