Counterfeit laptop chargers are bad for your box

inside

Ken Shirriff embarked upon a teardown of counterfeit Apple laptop chargers. On the outside, they're typo-free and very convincing. Inside, though, they're a dangerous mangle of cheap parts and inexplicably bad decisions.

The most important feature of a charger is the isolation between the potentially-dangerous AC input and the low-voltage output… The counterfeit MagSafe charger has a dangerously small distance between the low voltage side (top) and the high voltage side (bottom). This is why you shouldn't buy counterfeit chargers.

I'm puzzled as to why counterfeit chargers never manage to have sufficient clearance distances. They use simple, low-complexity circuits so the circuit board layout should be straightforward. Except in the smallest cube phone chargers, they aren't fighting for every millimeter of space. It shouldn't take much additional effort to make the boards safer.

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Watch: fake $50 bill revealed to be a $10 bill

counterfeit-50

It appears that someone put decals on this $10 bill to pass it off as a $50. I'm sure most marks wouldn't notice that Hamilton's face is on the bill when it should be Grant, especially in another country where the currency is less familiar. Read the rest

The Russian way to destroy Chinese knockoff iPhones

Instead of giving six men hammers, they hired five men to open the cardboard box containing the 127 fake iPhones and one man to drive an excavator over the phones.

(Thanks, Joly MacFie!) Read the rest

Steve Jobs shills green tea and Sony hardware in Taiwan

Andy Ihnatko explains what's going on in the image above, which was snapped and submitted to him by a reader in Taiwan. Read the rest