About this project
What is Dart?
The Dart is the world’s smallest, lightest laptop adapter. At a powerful 65W it is a perfect complement to today’s thin, lightweight, portable laptops. It fits in a pocket and is designed with a USB port and single outlet profile to make it easy for you to stay charged up when you're on the road. We hope you are as excited about the Dart as we are and looking forward to finally carrying just one, tiny Dart to charge all your electronics. Join our campaign and never be stuck powerless again!
New 4/30 – Announcing $500K Dart Stretch Goal
If the Dart campaign reaches $500,000 every Dart will ship with a detachable cable! We believe a detachable cable makes the Dart a better product and will create additional flexibility and value for ALL our backers. It will simplify cable management, reduce the risk of damage at the cable attach point, and enable us to offer shorter, longer, or multi-USB cable options in the future. More details are available in Backer Update #5. You can help us hit our stretch goal by sharing our Kickstarter page and/or by further supporting us at www.finsix.com where Dart bundles (sets of Darts) are exclusively available.
Dart: Key Features
Designed for Your Mobile Lifestyle
As Seen On:
More About Dart: Product Details
- Your Dart, Your Color: Blue, Magenta, Silver, Gunmetal, or Orange
- AC Input: 90V - 265V, 50/60Hz
- Weight: 60 grams
- Size: 2.5 cubic inches
- Cable Length: 6 feet
Dart is designed to work with all major laptop brands and a majority of today’s laptops. To ensure your laptop will work with the Dart you can use one of two methods:
- The Dart works with laptops that have a voltage of 18 - 21V* AND a power level of ≤65 watts. You can check the rating of your laptop and/or laptop adapter in the small label printed on the bottom of the unit. If the power level is not provided, multiply the voltage (V) by the current (Amps) and make sure this number is ≤65 (W). Note: Make sure to use the INPUT voltage/current on the laptop label and/or the OUTPUT voltage/current on the adapter label.
- Confirm that your laptop is on the Dart Laptop Compatibility Guide. If you do not see your laptop listed here, you will likely see it listed on the Laptop Non-Compatibility Guide. If you do not see your laptop listed on either Guide, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
*MacBook users: Please select the Dart for MacBook. The standard Dart is NOT MacBook compatible. The Dart works with all MacBooks 65W and under. There are a few MacBooks that require >65W for regular charge speeds; these laptops - namely the 15" and 17" MacBook Pro and the 15" MacBook Pro with retina display - are not compatible. Also, we have added a design provision to the Dart for MacBook that enables it to connect to both MacBooks (using the Apple connector) and PC laptops (using the standard set of PC connectors). If you have already purchased an additional Dart because you weren't aware that the Dart for MacBook had this dual capability, feel free to cancel your second order.
The Dart’s Secret Sauce
The Dart's radical reduction in size is enabled by patented MIT technology called very high frequency (VHF) power conversion.
Simply put, an AC/DC power converter (the power brick) takes the power from your wall and regulates it to the right voltage or current for your electronics. Today, AC/DC power converters are everywhere. All of your electronics from your laptop, tablet, and phone to your LED lights, gaming consoles, and TVs require a relatively bulky AC/DC power converter. FInsix's patented VHF platform makes these converters radically smaller.
It is well known in power electronics that increasing switching frequency is key to reducing size, weight, and cost. However, it is critical (and very hard) to switch faster while maintaining high efficiency. This is because modern power converters repeatedly deliver small packets of energy to the electronic device in cycles called switching cycles. Switching isn’t a perfect process and during every cycle some energy is wasted in the form of heat. At FINsix, our technology allows us to waste far less energy with each cycle. Thus, we can cycle up to 1000x faster without wasting any more energy than a conventional power converter. Cycling faster means we can transfer a smaller packet of energy to each cycle - and make the power converter a lot smaller.
The FINsix Story
FINsix was founded by a team of MIT graduate students with the goal of using our technology to radically shrink the bulky chargers for all your electronics. We chose the laptop adapter as our first product and set about the task of taking VHF power to commercial production. To help us achieve this objective, we've built a dedicated team that includes several veterans of the power industry specialized in product design, system integration, and manufacturing. The team is now 18 strong and based in Menlo Park, CA. Learn more about our story and our focus on adapters here.
Meet the FINsix Leadership Team
Vanessa Green, CEO: Co-founded FINsix as an MBA student at MIT Sloan.
Anthony Sagneri, CTO: Co-founded FINsix while pursuing his Ph.D. at MIT where he was instrumental in developing the principles of VHF power technology.
George Hwang, Director of Manufacturing: Co-founded FINsix while a Ph.D. student at MIT.
Joseph Scarci, VP of Sales & Marketing: 25 year veteran of the power industry.
Dave Grant, Director of IC Development: Formerly a top power IC designer at Texas Instruments.
Jim Kardach, Director of Technology Integration: Formerly Senior Principal Engineer and Chief Power Architect at Intel.
Chris Strickler, Senior Principal Engineer: Formerly Director of Engineering at Comarco, a company that designs and sells small form factor laptop power adapters.
Product Development & Manufacturing
The Dart's design is set and we are now moving into approvals and pre-production. This means we expect to see only minor changes before product release. Our next phase will be focused on testing for design validation, completing the required certifications, and spinning up our production lines. A timeline detailed is provided below.
We are fortunate that all the pieces of our system are standard “off-the-shelf” components. These include conventional PCBs, transistors, and passive elements such as capacitors and inductors. As a result, despite the breakthrough nature of Dart's design, it is relatively straightforward to manufacture. We will provide regular backer updates as we finalize our supply chain, complete approvals, and get ready to ship your Dart.
This Campaign is About Getting the Dart into Your Pocket.
Join #PerfectlyMobile and Eliminate the Bulky Charger!
Risks and challenges
Regulatory Approvals: We are confident that we have a robust, reliable and safe product; however, the approvals process can be unpredictable and add time to a schedule. We have mitigated this risk by designing for certification and by hiring a veteran team with decades of experience navigating this process with laptop adapter products.
Supply Chain: There are also inherent risks around establishing robust and repeatable manufacturing processes. We are projecting four months to set-up production because we know the Dart will use standard manufacturing processes as well as off-the-shelf electrical components. That means that every component in our system can be sourced reliably in volume today. However, manufacturing issues can easily delay delivery, so the supply chain effort will be a top priority for us in the months to come.
Fulfillment: We expect to fulfill the majority of our rewards directly from our contract manufacturing partner. We expect to finalize our third party logistics partner in September. For rewards that are custom-painted we will be fulfilling limited orders from our office in Menlo Park, CA.
We will be keeping all our backers fully informed as we finalize our manufacturing partner(s), receive regulatory approvals, and start production.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
We initially made a mistake here. We didn't realize that people overseas might want a Dart without the plug adapter, so we set "ships within the US only" when we created all our rewards (except Global Dart). We spoke with Kickstarter, and to address this issue they recommended we create two new rewards: Your Dart for $90 and Dart for MacBook for $169. These rewards are the same as the standard units but will ship internationally. There will be $15 added for international shipping. These rewards do NOT include a plug adapter. Thanks for your patience.
For clarity: If you followed the interim solution of -- backing the regular Dart, adding $15 for international shipping (and using the FINsix office address to complete) -- you do NOT need to change your pledge. After the campaign we will send a survey to confirm your reward and collect your shipping address. We just wanted to make it simpler for others going forward.
The plug adapter is a convenient way for people, who live in a country that has a different plug type, to try out the Dart (with U.S. prongs). We recognize that the plug adapter adds cost and size to the overall solution and isn’t optimal. If you live outside the US and already have your own plug adapter, you should select the $90 (PC laptop) or $169 (MacBook) reward. These rewards ship internationally for an additional $15 and don’t come with a plug adapter. These rewards are also perfect for people who live in a country that uses US prongs. In 2015, we expect to be selling a Dart that has built in European and other worldwide plug types (no plug adapter needed).
When our Kickstarter project ends, we will send a survey to all our backers to get their color and/or custom design preference.
It is only possible to pledge ONCE on a single Kickstarter account. If you pledge again on the same account, it will OVERRIDE your previous pledge and reward selection. If you want to pledge for an additional reward, we recommend creating a second Kickstarter account, which can be linked to the same Amazon account (and therefore the same credit card). If you would like both a Dart and a Dart for MacBook please see our website for additional information.
Absolutely. The Dart delivers 65W of power. That means ample current to charge your laptop as fast as your existing adapter.
Can the Dart charge my USB device (tablet, smartphone, camera, etc.) at the same time that my laptop is being charged?
Yes, The Dart charges your laptop and USB device simultaneously. FINsix’s USB charger is 2.1A (10.5 watts) so it has sufficient power to charge your USB devices at full speed.
The standard Dart is compatible with all major PC laptop manufacturers including: Acer, Asus, Compaq, Dell, Gateway, HP, IBM/Lenovo, MSI, Panasonic, Samsung, Sony, and Toshiba. Please see the Dart Compatibility Guide for specific models. We are offering a limited number of MacBook compatible units on Kickstarter.
FINsix is making a limited supply of Darts available for the MacBook on Kickstarter. The Dart works with all MacBooks 65W and under. To offer these units we have to buy an off-the-shelf Apple adapter to get the connector. This approach is expensive, so the Dart for MacBook costs $79 more than a standard Dart. There are a few MacBooks that require >65W, so theDart will not be compatible with 15” and 17” MacBook Pros and the 15” MacBook Pro with retina display.
We realize that the Dart for MacBook price is high and are running down every suggestion to obtain a cheaper MacBook connector. If we find one that we are able to legally use or license, we will reduce the price of the Dart for MacBook and refund all our backers accordingly.
Yes it does. We saw your requests and have added a design provision to the Dart for MacBook offering that enables it to connect to both MacBooks (using the Apple connector) and PC laptops (using the standard set of PC laptop connectors which we will now bundle with the Dart for MacBook rewards). If you have already added an additional Dart because you weren't aware that the Dart for MacBook had this dual capability, feel free to cancel your second order. Also note that the Dart for MacBook reward will have a 2.1A USB port for charging smartphones and tablets, the same as our standard Dart for PC laptops.
Unfortunately, the Dart is not compatible with the Surface or the Pixel. These devices requires 12V DC and the Dart puts out 18 to 21V DC, which is what most laptops need. We are considering a 12V Dart for future.
Yes. The Dart can be used anywhere in the world. If you are traveling outside of the country where you purchased your Dart, you may still need a plug adapter in order to plug into local outlets.
Many different types and sizes of power connectors are used across the various laptop manufacturers and models. FINsix will provide the correct DC connector(s) with each adapter to ensure compatibility.
The Dart is not compatible with laptops that require ≥65 watts.
You can simply select the “Contact Me” link on the right side of the page beneath "Project by FINsix". You can also reach us at email@example.com. We are working to get to your messages as quickly as we can. We expect that you will here back from a member of our team no longer than 12 hours from when you send your message.
We are preparing our supply chain to get you your Dart as quickly as possible. Each tier description includes a projected delivery date. The first Darts are expected to ship in November 2014.
We are growing our team and looking for talented people who are excited about the Dart and VHF power. Please see http://finsix.com/company/#section-careers to learn more about our open positions.
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