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I've relied upon my MagSafe connection to keep my laptop safe for almost a decade. I got a new MacBook Air and felt funny putting in the USB power cord, but didn't realize just why I felt funny until I tried to remove it by lifting it up instead of pulling it out.

OMG the MagSafe is gone!

I will have to work on trying to remember this every waking moment of every day; routing cords more carefully and keeping an eye on them so they don't get pulled by others or myself, etc.

Is there any published advice on safe behavioral changes that MagSafe addicts like myself can learn? Are there any special aftermarket connectors, magnetic or otherwise, that I can put in the power connection that will disconnect safely when pulled? If so, are there any special features or problems I should look for before choosing one?

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  • Did you try searching the Web? There are lot of 3rd-party accessories that either let you add a small converter to add MagSafe like magnetic connection functionality to a USB-C cable.
    – Nimesh Neema
    Jun 10, 2020 at 13:35
  • @NimeshNeema For the hardware solution I could just buy something randomly, but there could be specific considerations that are important for reliability. Some users may have experience already and be able to share which features or aspects I should look out for for best results.
    – uhoh
    Jun 10, 2020 at 13:40
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    It’s a connector, not unlike all the other non-magnetic connectors that graced the sides of MacBook laptops through the ages: USB-A, Thunderbolt, HDMI, etc. These aftermarket magnetic adapters should be avoided IMO. These are cheaply made gimmicks that you’re plugging into a laptop priced at the higher end of the scale. Leaving this adapter plugged in is a sure way to break the port (in your laptop bag or backpack for instance). Yes, MagSafe was awesome, but it’s gone. We just have to roll with the changes.
    – Allan
    Jun 10, 2020 at 13:55
  • @Allan After doing some looking around I've posted an answer. I'm going to try one; the magnetic disconnect has saved me several times over the past eight years, and I'd like to get another eight years out of my MacBook 2020, so I'm going to try to see how it goes.
    – uhoh
    Oct 13, 2020 at 10:07

2 Answers 2

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Apple is ready to take your money again for MagSafe and portables.

Apple solution is far better than the aftermarket ones I’ve seen in the 20 to 50 range from Amazon for devices expecting USB-C power delivery.

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  • Thank you for your most welcomed answer and reminder! After getting my aftermarket cheat I find that I hate it because it only works when pulling in certain directions but not others. I'd planned on amending my answer about that but could never find that round tuit... until perhaps now. :-)
    – uhoh
    Nov 4, 2021 at 17:34
  • But I'm a little confused how I'm going to use that to power my USB-C powered MacBook Air. What will the magnetic end of your proposed cable connect to? Where will the power come from?
    – uhoh
    Nov 4, 2021 at 17:38
  • You can’t use this with any Mac other than the new M1 Pro and M1 Max since the receiving end of the MagSafe is built into the frame of the mac and needs internal components to connect the MagSafe 3 wires to the charging circuitry. Also +1 on your answer and question - they are great resources on thinking how to deal with change and hardware limitations.
    – bmike
    Nov 4, 2021 at 17:40
  • Oh then it doesn't work for my current laptop, what I've asked about here. "Buy a new laptop" seems the only actual solution to my problem.
    – uhoh
    Nov 4, 2021 at 17:47
  • Yes - that’s the “Apple is ready to take your money” portion - I expect many people will decide to gift / donate / sell their older macs when they see the new ones. I can’t wait to order my 14” MBP ; - )
    – bmike
    Nov 4, 2021 at 18:02
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How to cope with MagSafe “withdrawal”?

One should take pause when consider doing anything that Apple doesn't. @Allen's comment points out that the (relatively small) stub of an aftermarket magnetic connector sticking out is an opportunity to put stress on the internal connector when the laptop is stored or bouncing around in a backpack.

For users like me though, I have to weigh that against the benefits of having a safe disconnection if the cable is tripped on or otherwise pulled.

A medium ground might be to consider using an aftermarket magnetic connector but taking care to either remove it and stow it somewhere or just slide the laptop into the backpack with the USB side facing up.

But that also means taking care if putting the laptop into a case or sleeve.

The other option is to (try to remember to) take it out every tine. Some adapters have little plastic tools to pull it straight out and a case to stow it, and some vendors sell two tips for every one cable, allowing you to stow one at home and the other elsewhere, or to lose one forever.

It seems that there is no perfect workaround to avoid experiencing MagSafe “withdrawal”.

Update: don't do it!

I tried that and it's terrible! In addition to the perma-stub sticking out of my laptop ready to catch on something and stress my laptop's connector, the thing only works (quickly releases) when pulled in certain directions, but not other directions. It's both dangerous and does not reliably work!

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