Ever wonder why your phone charges slower on your computer?

Isn’t it weird that a simple power-plug adapter can charge your phone faster than your new MacBook, or gaming PC? Why, on even the most expensive laptop or motherboard, is there only one “always on” or “sleep mode” port where you can charge a USB device, even when your computer is sleeping, or off? This is mainly because of computer manufacturers. Lenovo ThinkPad L380 (light grey), and, ThinkPad X380 Yoga (dark grey), how many different icons for power? Source: MobileTechReview In the picture above, we see different icons for various features of these laptops that can be somewhat confusing.  First off, on the light grey L380, we can see a USB Type-C port with a power plug icon and a small LED indicator.  This is obviously the port where you can charge your laptop through the USB Type-C port.  Adjacent to that is a regular Type-C port, and a regular USB Type-A labelled with two icons, one italic SS with USB logo and a battery with a + symbol inside it. Moving on to the dark grey X380, we have an old-fashion charging port, a Type-C with a lightning bolt icon, and a Type-A port with the same SS USB and Battery icon as seen on the L380. If you had to guess which port would charge your smartphone the fastest, and the only information that was given to you were these icons, your safest bet would be choosing the port with the battery+ icon, right?  Well in this case, that port is not exactly doing more than being available even when you shut the system down.  For all intent and purposes it’s just a regular USB 3.0/.1 Gen1 port without any other special charging features. And in a lot of cases, you still need to manually enable this feature. The Type-C ports on both models are capable of USB Power Delivery, but the specs don’t mention what revision it uses, nor does it specify how much power it actually supplies. And this is just the start of the problems for most of us, the charger that comes with the laptop might be 45W or 65W, but it’s hard to know exactly until you have the actual product in-hand. Motherboards and USB power A few years ago, motherboard manufacturers discovered the challenges of the, then new, USB 3.0 (2010-2011) standard and having multiple USB devices connected to your computer. At that time, many motherboard manufacturers began to question the power of their USB implementation. The reason behind this was because once the USB chip guidelines on how to install one USB 3.0 chip on a motherboard with sufficient 5 Volt were implemented, manufacturers started integrating more USB chips on their motherboard, leading people to start connecting more and more devices simultaneously.  The voltage and the amount of Watts that were delivered for USB charging eventually dropped.  The most common scenario was having a USB hard-drive, a phone charging on a motherboard, and then connecting an Audio amplifier which would eventually lead to one of the devices not working because there was not enough power. Around 2013, we saw them change the way they would implement delivering voltage to the USB chips.  By now, the engineers understood that following the specs didn’t work, so the solution was to make sure that all USB ports on a motherboard deliver a stable 5V, no matter how many devices are connected. However, since the introduction of USB Power Delivery, they have not been able to deliver the same USB experience on Motherboards, as there is they have been doing on modern laptops. Even though they are made by the same company, and engineers. After analyzing the current range of the latest and popular Z390 motherboards among different brands, we’ve come to this conclusion: Asus: They don’t make any mention of anything over bare spec USB for charging, we couldn’t even find any port with Power Delivery on their high-end ROG Maximus XI Formula. ASRock:  They also don’t mention any special USB technology for their motherboards. Although, for those that are interested, they do still use USB ReDrivers to boost USB signal integrity over long-ranges, for instance USB ports at the front of your case. MSI: They were once proud to show they had the same USB charging technology on their motherboards and laptops, however they now only mention the bare minimum for USB information. The marketing comments do not mention anything regarding USB power either. That now leaves us with Gigabyte.  While we can’t say everyone should immediately go out and buy their motherboards for their next build, motherboards like the Gigabyte Z390 Extreme feature a USB 3.1 Gen2 port with “USB TurboCharger”  that connects to the front of your PC case.  The port supports both QuickCharge 3.0 and Apple Fast-Charge. So no, you will not be able to charge your MacBook Air, or Lenovo Yoga laptop, but at least you know that you’ll be getting plenty of juice to charge your smartphone straight from your PC’s front panel. That concludes our little investigation into charging USB devices on your Personal Computer.  While it’s okay on the laptop side, with various brands offering PD solutions on their laptops, the options for gamers and desktop users are very limited, with most vendors focusing purely on delivering a LOT of USB ports, without thinking about how we, the customers, actually use them. *2019/02/18

The Hero of Computers – No need to download a driver with UVC

The UVC, short for USB Video Class, is a USB device class that allows a direct video data transfer from a video streaming device (such as camcorders, webcams, analog video converters) to a computer or game console.  It was introduced by the USB implementer’s forum also known as USB –IF.  UVC makes moving audio and video sources from devices (such as Pengo 4k Grabber, Webcams, Digital Cameras etc.) to a computer operating system much easier in the sense that there is no need to install any driver.  Any Video Camera device could use the standard UVC driver (already built in the OS) in those platforms to transfer videos directly.   Having said that, readers may feel that there is nothing remarkable.  But in fact, not needing to install a driver is really a big benefit!  In the past, when the transmission speed was not so fast, the video and audio information had to be compressed before being transmitted, and could only be read after being decompressed by the driver on the computer.  To put it in another way, the driver can be seen as a dictionary, and the various audio and video data can be seen as a variety of languages.  If you want to connect ten different audio and video sources, you have to have ten different kinds of dictionaries and ten different drivers.  In addition to being a troublesome and time-consuming installation, some drivers may be blocked by the computer operating system or firewall, resulting in the inability to transfer a video source from a camera or other equipment.  Not to mention if the compute’s operating system and performance is not enough, the data could be lost during the editing and decompressing process. With the increase of USB transmission speed, the audio and video data can be transmitted directly at no time.  In 2003, UVC 1.0 was introduced by USB-IF; the latest UVC 1.5 was then introduced in 2012.  Through the standardization of UVC, installing redundant drivers are not necessary anymore thus increasing the capacity of hardware.  Additionally, you will not have to worry about editing, decompressing, computer failure and the risk of not saving your data. We hope you have a better understanding of UVC!  If you want to know some additional technical information, you are welcome to visit our Pengo Facebook and like us!  We will have occasional events and promotion so make sure to check us out! Note: UVC is built into operating systems such as Windows, Mac OX, Linux, FreeBSD, and the PS3. *2019/03/18

What is 4K? What is Ultra HD?

It’s simple, 4K means a clearer picture. It's more pixels (8,294,400 pixels) on the screen at once that creates images that are crisper and capable of showing more details than standard HD. Ultra High Definition is actually a derivation of the 4K digital cinema standard. However while your local multiplex shows images in native 4096 x 2160 4K resolution, the new Ultra HD consumer format has a slightly lower resolution of 3840 X 2160 which is what you get on the 16:9 ratio TVs you actually take home. This is one reason why some brands prefer not to use the 4K label at all, sticking with Ultra HD or UHD instead. What is the resolution of 4K? 4K resolution is 3840 x 2160 or 2160p.  A full HD 1080p image is only a 1920x1080 resolution.  4K screens have about 8 million pixels, which is around four times what your current 1080p set can display. A full HD 1080p image is 1080 rows high and 1920 columns wide.  A 4K image approximately doubles the numbers in both directions, making it approximately four times as many pixels total.   4K, also called 4K resolution, refers to a horizontal screen display resolution in the order of 4,000 pixels.  There are several different 4K resolutions in the fields of digital television and digital cinematography.  In television and consumer media, 4K UHD or UHD-1 is the dominant 4K standard. In the movie projection industry, Digital Cinema Initiatives (DCI 4K) is the dominant 4K standard. There are three main 4K resolution standards: UHD-1, or ultra-high-definition television (UHDTV), is the 4K standard for television and computer monitors. Resolution of 3840 × 2160 (16:9, or approximately a 1.78:1 aspect ratio);  UHD-1 is used in consumer television and other media, e.g. video games. UW4K is the ultra-wide 4K standard, with a resolution of 3840 × 1600, and an aspect ratio of 12:5 (2.4:1, or 21.6:9) This resolution is most commonly used on Ultra HD Blu-ray discs, and PC gaming monitors. DCI 4K which has a resolution of 4096 × 2160 pixels (256:135, approximately a 1.9:1 aspect ratio). This standard is only used in the film and video production industry.  The DCI 4K standard has twice the horizontal and twice the vertical resolution of DCI 2K. *Source from Wikipedia. Why is it called 4K? Because the images are around 4,000 pixels wide.  Yes, the industry named 1080 resolution after image height, but named 4K after image width.  To make it more confusing, you also might hear this resolution referred to as 2160p.  Like it’s not confusing enough?  They just make it more confusing.  Why do we need so many pixels? More pixels means more information. More information means sharper pictures. Sharper pictures are more engaging. More engaging content is more interesting.  We just get more picky with what we see nowadays. I'll see a huge difference? Maybe not as much of a thrill as you did when you upgraded your old CRT to a flatscreen, but 4K screens are noticeably sharper than 1080p screens.  Going from a 480 to a 1080p set, you’ll feel the difference;  display size is more powerful than any resolution jump could ever hope to be. Most people got big jumps in both screen size and resolution.  But this time screen sizes are staying about the same, with the most popular models falling in the 40 inch to 70 inch range. Most importantly, you'll only be able to see the resolution difference on a 4K set if you're watching 4K content and you're sitting close enough. What is this 8K? It's the next resolution standard up from 4K. Basically it doubles the pixel height and width again to yield approximately 32 million pixels.  An 8K display would also be UHD. 8K UHD, or 8K resolution, is the current highest ultra high definition television (UHDTV) resolution in digital television and digital cinematography.  8K refers to the horizontal resolution of 7,680 pixels, forming the total image dimensions of (7680×4320), otherwise known as 4320p. *source www.techradar.com updated 2018/04/01

How many different types of USB are there?

As technology keeps advancing, and the demand of small devices increases, manufactures are forced to come up with smaller and smaller but faster USB standards to fit the devices.  It can be confusing, but let us show you the different types of USB that we can find in the market today. Below are the different types of USB:    updated 2018/04/01

What is the difference between all the USB 2.0, 3.0, and 3.1 out there?

Let us explain to you in very simple words as technology keeps defining new heights. USB  2.0 operates at a max. of 480Mbps transfer data called “high speed” and it only has 4 pins.  Generally defined in black color connector. USB 3.0 operates at max. speed of 5Gbps transfer data rate called “super speed” and uses a blue connector to differentiate from USB 2.0 and has more pins.     USB 3.1 Gen 1 is the same as USB 3.0.  USB 3.0 got a new name when the new speed USB 3.1 Gen 2 was released.  USB 3.1 Gen 2 data transfers up to 10Gbps, at 100W of charging power also known as “charger and cable clutter” is defined with a red connector.   USB is always backward compatible until the new USB-C where you may have to buy a new converter.    *source www.usb.org   updated 2018/04/01

What is USB PD (Power Delivery)?

USB Power Delivery is a charging protocol that enables USB-C cables and connectors to deliver higher levels of power to your devices.  Provides faster charging, more power for larger devices, shorter charging time, and charge simultaneously between devices.  It enables the maximum functionality of USB by providing more flexible power delivery along with data over a single cable.  USB Power Delivery offers the following features: Increased power levels from existing USB standards up to 100W. Power direction is no longer fixed. This enables the product with the power (Host or Peripheral) to provide the power. Optimize power management across multiple peripherals by allowing each device to take only the power it requires, and to get more power when required for a given application. Intelligent and flexible system level management of power via optional hub communication with the PC. Allows low power cases such as headsets to negotiate for only the power they require. *source www.usb.org updated 2018/02/01