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Review of the Thrustmaster T-Charge Stand Contactless +NW: Replace, Recharge, Enjoy

by: Finn Orfano ; edited by: Michael Hartman ; updated: 4/17/2012 • Leave a comment

Hate replacing batteries but love using the Wii remote for hours on end? Then instead of popping in replacement batteries every few hours, just close your eyes, click your heels and say, “Thrustmaster T-Charge Stand Contactless +NW.”

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    T-Charge Stand Contactless+ NW: Not Exactly A Catchy Name

    Box Are you sick of buying batteries for that power-eating Wii remote? I know I am, but I’m even more annoyed at how the power usually dries up just as I’ve started to get “in the zone” with the game I’m playing. I’ve considered getting rechargeable batteries but rankly it seems a pain to have to replace the disposable ones and then use a charger and go through just as much trouble - if different - than replacing batteries has been.

    So in comes UPS and out of the package comes the Thrustmaster T-Charge Stand Contactless +NW. Yeh for a name it’s not catchy and more than a mouthful. But as a system for not having to use disposable batteries or deal with charging rechargeable batteries, it just might be exactly what I need.

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    Setting Up the T-Charge Stand Contactless+ NW

    Batteries Setting up the T-Charge takes about as much time to do as it will take to read this. You pop off the battery back from the Wii remote and remove the batteries. Then you take one of the two battery packs and replace it for the battery back: the result being that the Wii remote looks the same as it did before except now it has a set of rechargeable batteries inside that are permanently attached to a back that goes onto the Wii remote .

    If you have a second Wii remote, you repeat the process with the second battery pack.

    Now for the T-Charge’s main unit. It’s designed to hold the Nintendo Wii vertically using a combination of a slot that the Wii slips into and two plastic pegs which insert themselves into a vent on the Wii. I found this not the most perfect arrangement because the Wii sits on a shelf (with a fan behind it for cooling) and there wasn’t enough room to have the Wii be vertical. So I just placed the T-Charge unit to the side of the Wii, where it sat fine.

    The last step is to insert the short USB plug permanently attached to the T-Charge unit into one of the two USB ports on the Wii’s back. This supplies power to the T-Charge and eliminates the need for a separate and bulky power supply.

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    Using the T-Charge Stand Contactless+ NW with the Nintendo Wii

    Base All this done, I checked with the manual as to the right way to put the Wii remote on the T-Charge unit. Even without looking I would have guessed the position since each of the two inserts on the T-Charge unit are shaped to accept the Wii remote - with a small curve at the front so that the Wii remote’s “trigger” can grip and maintain the remote in position.

    I had left the Wii on so I knew that the T-Charge unit was getting power, and so wasn’t surprised that the LED light bar on the front of the T-Charge unit illuminated Blue to show it was charging (Green indicating that a full charge has been reached. There’s no physical pins or contacts making a connection because the charging is done using an induction system.

    It might not be the same as how my electric toothbrush charges but I bet it’s darned close. You do have to make sure you’ve seated the Wii remote correctly in order for the charging to kick in, but sometimes a little effort on the part of a gamer should be allowed. Applauded even.

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    Is the T-Charge Stand Contactless+ NW Perfect?

    Finished view Well, no. While not major, there is a downside to using the Charger - specifically if you only have one Wii remote on hand you're not getting the full benefit so you have to go buy another. At least the Wii has two USB ports since the Charge ir using one of them forever. That’s something that you probably could use anyway and now, as Master Shake of the Aqua Teen Hunger Force might say, “You better get one!” After all, it's not always about saving money.

    Thrustmaster says that the rechargeable batteries will function for a good 30 hours once they’ve been fully charged. I don’t know about that yet, but I do agree that it makes sense that the Wii MotionPlus and the Wii silicone protectors that can be used to cover the Wii remote don’t affect the charging process in any way. Good job, Mr. T.