Review: Side Winder – Portable Cable Management for Your MacBook

Review: Side Winder – Portable Cable Management for Your MacBook

There’s nothing more frustrating (or embarrassing) than reaching into your backpack for your laptop charger, only to pull out a rats nest of cables. With Apple’s new USB-C chargers, the mess is even more frustrating, with the removal of those handy wings on the charging block. With the Side Winder from Fuse Reel, your cable spaghetti nightmare is far more manageable.

Overview

The Side Winder (starting at $27.99 from fusereel.com) is a brilliantly simple cable manager for your Mac’s charging cable. It supports MagSafe 1 and 2 chargers, as well as Apple’s USB-C Mac chargers (minus the 29W block for the 12” MacBook), and adds convenience to your portable setup.

In the box (USB-C Model), you get the Side Winder, as well as a selection of spacers which provide clear cable routing and support for the Mac charging block, and an included USB-C charging cable. Getting setup is as easy as placing the spacers for your given charger, inserting your charging block, connecting the USB-C cable* (or routing the MagSafe cable, and winding things up.

Once setup, the Side Winder can be quickly deployed to extend only the amount of cable needed to power your laptop, without the fuss of knots or messy cables. When you’re ready to pack up, the cable can be quickly wound back into the Side Winder and stored in a backpack or bag for tangle-free portability.

In practice, the Side Winder is incredibly convenient. When out and about, the Side Winder fits in the same space as your typical laptop charger, but can be fully extended in seconds. This means that you never have to worry about creating a tripping hazard of cables or untangling a mess at the coffee shop.

While the physical size of the Side Winder is slightly larger than the charging block by itself, having the entire charging setup in such a portable, mess free package makes it a simple delight. In my testing, I found that with the Side Winder, I was using less overall space in my bag and was more willing to plug in while out in public.

Being able to quickly pack up my charger was another huge benefit. Normally, I’d be stuck meticulously wrapping my charging cable, disconnecting the charging block, and wrestling with the thick extension cable. With the Side Winder, I could simply unplug my device, give it a couple spins, and toss the the whole thing in my bag, making working on the go a breeze.

Verdict

Rating: 4.9/5

Sometimes, a simple solution to a small problem is all it takes to feel more productive. The Side Winder is a perfect example of a simple product, offering a genius solution to a nagging frustration. The quality construction of ease of use make it a perfect compliment to your portable Mac setup.

Pros

  • Easy-to-use design
  • Support for most MacBook chargers
  • Convenient
  • Great price

Cons

  • No support for my 29W 12” MacBook charger

If you’re a Mac user, and you’re sick of dealing with the mess your charging cables create, you need the Side Winder. It’s available from Fuse Reel for $27.99 (MagSafe 1/2) or $31.99 (USB-C) and is compatible with Apple’s 45W, 60W, 61W, 85W, and 87W Chargers (does not fit the 29W charger for 12” MacBook).

* For USB-C powered MacBooks, the Side Winder’s included 6’ charging cable is required for the winding to work.

Disclosure: The product above was provided, free of charge, to review. All opinions expressed are strictly my own, based on my experience with the product.

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