Picture of the DE 9 Ft. Lightning to USB Cable, original packaging front view.

DE Lightning Charging Cable Review, 9 Ft, Sync Too

The DE 9 Ft lightning cable is certainly not the cheapest data and charging cable available. But it’s very well built, durable, and charges iPhones quickly.

DE 9 Ft Lightning Charging Cable Intro

We paid nearly $25 for ours at K-Mart.  This cost about the same as Apple-built lightning cords.  Yet the extra three feet here makes this cable a bit cheaper per foot. It features larger size plugs, and thicker wires.  So it’s a rugged conduit between your devices and chargers. Though not exactly a “Genuine Apple Cable,” these equivalent units works as well.  In fact, it may even outperform Apple in terms of durability, ease of use, and lower cost.

This DE sync charge cable is among the best USB lightning cables we’ve found.  Though it’s a few feet longer than standard six foot sync charge cables, charging occurs as quickly.  Both plugs stay cool to the touch.  Plus, the thicker wire, while somewhat stiff, is still flexible enough to wrap up into a compact shape.  So it’s easy to wrap up for travel. Our iPad Air consistently and fully charges via this cable, and we almost never see the dreaded, “not charging” message; unlike what happens with the cheaper knock-off charge cables.

Picture of the DE 9 Ft. lightning to USB charging cable, original packaging front view.
DE 9 Ft. lightning to USB charging cable, front view.

Advantages, Benefits, and Features of the DE 9 Ft Lightning Charging Cable

Ample length.

Extra long cord in this 9-foot version. Over 2m.

Fast Charging 

Even the 9-foot model works well in high-current USB Apple devices (those requiring more than one amp for charging). No noticeable increase in required times to achieve a full charge in iPads. Often, the longer cables slow down charging.  Not the case here however.

Heavy Cable

The cord is noticeably thicker than the one that comes with the stock iPad Air USB lightning charge cable. So we predict longer durability. And, though thicker, the wire is almost as flexible as the cable that came with our iPad.

Works with Non Stock USB Chargers

Since it features a USB-D port connector, it can be used with most universal USB chargers to charge lightning-accepting devices.

Easy to Grasp Plug

Now the lightning plug found on other sync cables can be rather small. This size makes grasping it harder. But the DE cord has a longer and fatter body.  So the plugs on this cord are much easier to grasp, push in, and pull out.

MFi Certified

This cable is made specifically for and works well with most any mobile device that has the lightning connector as its USB like interface, including iPod, iPad 4th Generation, iPad Air, iPhone 5, iPhone 6, iPad Mini, iPod Touch 5th Generation, and iPod Nano 7th Generation.

Gold Plated Contact Pins  

Find these on both the lightning and USB D plugs.

Improved Plug Design

When we used Apple’s stock lightning cables, that featured too-small connector bodies, we preferred the older 30-pin dock connector to the newer lightning one due to how much easier it was to attach and detach that connector from mobile devices. However, DE has devised in this product, an easier-to-access version of the lightning connector, so that now, we prefer lightning to the Apple’s nearly obsolete dock system connector. The connectors on this cable require about the same small effort as the dock connectors, and can be aimed at the mating holes with greater precision and ease than Apple stock lightning cords. The reason is likely the longer connector body featured in this cable, than what you find on current Apple cables.

USB 2 and USB 3 Supported

You can charge your lightning device from any current technology or legacy USB AC adapter.

Works as Well as Apple Stock Cords

Meets or exceeds Apple’s rigorous performance standards.

Picture of the DE 9 Ft. Lightning to USB data charging cable, original packaging back view.
DE 9 Ft. Lightning to USB data charging cable, original packaging back view.

Concerns, Disadvantages, Cons, Problems, and Limitations

Made in China

Has Sensitive Parts

All lightning cables have parts inside that devices use to “authenticate” the cable.  They will not charge or exchange data without this.  This built-in chip could raise cable failure rates. Indeed, reviewers often deem cables like this as “fragile,” and that they often stop working too quickly. As such, treat this cord as you would any other piece of delicate electronics. Keep it away from static charges, bright sunlight, wet speaces, Etc. We’ll note any problems we see here over time, as our copy of this cable ages.  But so far, here in 2019, our cable still works great.

Strain Relief Too Rigid

The hard strain relief sleeve at the lightening end of this cable is not flexible enough.  It appears to be built from nearly the same rigid plastic as the plug body. So, we’re not sure how well this feature will protect the cable from breakage due to frequent bending. In fact, these may just be a part of the plug bodies, not meant as strain relief. Reinforced yet flexible strain relief would better protect the cable ends from flexing damage.

Expensive

A bit costly for a simple data cable, even an iPhone charger cord. This may be due to Apple’s hold on the licensing fees. They charge these fees to third party suppliers like DE, to build these cables.

Not full USB Charging

Will not charge micro-USB devices. But you can buy a lighting-to-micro-USB adapter for that. But instead, just buy a USB-D to micro USB cable for USB charging. Pure USB cords cost far less than those with lightning plugs.

Only Some Stores Sell This

Find DE USB to lightning cables on eBay. Sadly, they can be hard to get.

Single Device Charging Only

Can charge only one device per cable. Other cables feature multiple charge ports, both USB and lightning ports. But no biggie if all you have is a single Apple phone or tablet.

Picture of the DE 9 Ft. charging and sync lightning cable, unpacked.
DE 9 Ft. charging sync lightning cable, unpacked.

Our Rating

This DE USB cable goes beyond the Apple cords in terms of quality and ease of use. Though a bit pricey for a data sync cord, the DE is affordable. We were pleased to find it at K-Mart for the $25 we paid. Plus, the lightening plug is more mainstream today than it was when released in 2012. So cables like this are easier to find these days. We hope Apple will lower its licensing fees. Then these cords will fall in cost, yet stay in the upper crust of decently built products.

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References for DE Lightning Charging Cable

Revision History

  • 2019-07-07: Added more tags.
  • 2019-05-11: Deleted ad code, added tags, and tuned the targeting for ‘DE Lightning Charging Cable’.
  • 2015-10-21: Added appropriate tags.
  • 2015-10-12: Originally published.