General Question

guywithanaccountnow's avatar

Can I use this Dell AC adapter on a different kind of Dell?

Asked by guywithanaccountnow (313points) May 10th, 2012

I’ve heard that sometimes an adapter will work for a different type of laptop than you bought it for, but only if the voltage and wattage requirements for the different laptop are lower than or equal to the max amount the charger you’re using is able to deliver… at least that’s what I thought I was hearing. First the explanations I found seemed to make sense, but then it got more confusing when I heard:

“so if charger Voltage is greater than computer Voltage, don’t try it

but if charger Amperage is greater than computer Amperage, computer will only use the Amperage it needs and it’s ok

is that right?”

And the answer was:

“Basically, yes.”

I’m not sure if I get how amperage works. Is what they said true?

The charger I already have is Voltage 20V and Wattage 90W. The charger specifically designed for the other laptop I want to use it on would be Voltage 90V and Wattage 65W. Do I need to get that other charger, or can I use the one I already have?

If it helps anyone answer the question, the charger I already have is for a Dell Inspiron 8200 and the computer I’m wanting to know if I can use it on is a Dell Latitude D600.

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8 Answers

Rarebear's avatar

If the plug fits, it’s probably okay.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Yes. The 19.5 Volt, 90 Watt, 4.6 Amp DA90PS1 will work on the D6xx series. It will work the docking station if you have one as well as the laptop.
The 19.5 V, 65 Watt, 3.3 Amp is lighter but will only work the PC.

filmfann's avatar

I have dealt with a lot of different makes of computers, both at home and at work, and the Dells are the worst for accepting power adapters from other machines.
Since you are staying in house, you have a better chance of success, but prepare for disappointment. Dells are just that way.

jerv's avatar

The amperage and wattage ratings on the charger are maximum ratings.

Put another way, if a chair has a 300 pound weight limit, you can weigh under 300 pounds and still use it.

RocketGuy's avatar

I see it more like engine ratings. Adapter rating is power output capability. Laptop rating is what input power it needs. Like 300 hp for a Honda Civic is ok, but 50 hp engine in a Corvette is not.

So as long as adapter has same voltage and connector, and > or = output wattage you will be ok. Just to be careful see if you can verify the + and – are the same. There should be a diagram on the adapter. Yeah, I’m paranoid.

guywithanaccountnow's avatar


I meant to say the charger I’m wondering If I should buy has 19.5V, not 90. That might have thrown some people off.

guywithanaccountnow's avatar

Alos, has anyone tried this exact thing and seen it work, or is your knowledge just theoretical?

jerv's avatar

I have plugged all sorts of things into all sorts of other things, sometimes having to rewire things to make them work. I learned to do so long before I went into the Navy and formally studied electrical/electronic engineering further to become an Electricians Mate. I have even built my own power supplies/chargers from scratch.

I like to think I know what I am talking about here ;)

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