Nomad Base One Hands-On: The MagSafe Charger Apple Should Have Released – CNET

Nomad Base One Hands-On: The MagSafe Charger Apple Should Have Released – CNET


I’ve been a big fan of MagSafe accessories since shortly after I got my iPhone 12, but one that I never really bought into was Apple’s MagSafe charging puck. The charger looks like something that wouldn’t stay where I wanted it, and it was just a little outside of impulse purchase to justify purchasing it when I already had wireless charging pads that worked without issues. Nomad has always made great Apple products and often improved upon the experience of what Apple’s official stuff did, and the new Base One is exactly that.

If you look for a third-party MagSafe charger, you’ll find a lot of “magnetic chargers” but not a whole lot of “Made for MagSafe” accessories which are using Apple’s official MagSafe tech inside. While other chargers will work just fine, there are a few differences that make the official ones better to use, like the stronger magnet and the MagSafe animation when you put it in on the charger. So, what is the Base One and why do I like it so much?


The Base One is Nomad’s latest wireless charging pad that utilizes Apple’s MagSafe charging style to quickly charge all newer compatible iPhones. It comes in both a silver and carbide (dark, black-like color) option and a USB-C cable, but Nomad does not include a wall adapter in the box. It’s very important to note that in order to use this charger you need a wall adapter that provides at least 30W of power. If you don’t already have one, Nomad is currently offering its own slim version of a 30W charger for half price right now, so you can pick one up with your new Base One to ensure you can properly charge your phone when it arrives.

Read more: Best MagSafe and Magnetic iPhone Accessories for 2022

Once connected to a 30W brick, your iPhone will charge at 15W, which is the fastest that it can wirelessly. I’ve been using the Base One connected to Nomad’s 30W brick for about a week now and have had very consistent charging results. It’s worth noting that no scientific testing went into my results here, and that your milage may vary based on usage, but I was about to gain about 10% battery life in 10 minutes of charging and in most cases I didn’t need more than 20 minutes on the charger to get me through the rest of my day.


I’ve been using this on my desk, which is likely to be one of the most common places it’s used (or maybe a nightstand). What I really like about how strong the magnets are on this charger is that I don’t need to be super precise to get the phone to start charging on the pad. The magnets help pull it into place relatively easily. Because of the weight of the charger, removing your phone without moving the pad is actually quite easy, and since the pad sticks out from under the phone there’s an obvious location to place your fingers to remove it with one hand. In addition to being able to charge your MagSafe-compatible iPhone or AirPods, the Base One can also charge any other Qi-compatible device you may be using.

The charger itself is on the heavy side, weighing in a 515 grams, or just over one pound. This likely isn’t going to be a charger that you keep in your travel bag with you because of that, but there are plenty of other chargers available to consider for that usage. Aside from the weight, there isn’t much that I don’t like about the charger. 

It is absolutely on the more expensive side, coming in at $130 without the required 30W wall adapter. If you don’t already have a 30W adapter, there are a lot of options available at places like Amazon. As with other Nomad gear, this charger is very well made and the overall design looks like something Apple would have created, unlike some of the cheap and ugly ones you can find online. At this price, I would have preferred to see Nomad include the wall adapter, but if you already have one laying around from a previous fast charger, you may not be so worried about the omission.

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