Best USB-C adapters and hubs 2023: Add ports to your laptop
Get more USB-C ports on your laptop and other ports including HDMI, Ethernet and traditional USB with these great USB-C hubs and adapters.
In the old days, laptops used to have lots of connectors and ports dotted along their sides. But recently, makers have slimmed down their devices even more and left no room for such things as an HDMI output or Ethernet socket.
Indeed, more and more laptops (including Apple MacBooks and Dell’s XPS line) and tablets (such as Apple’s iPad Pro) use the latest USB-C connection standard—or its faster Thunderbolt 3 or 4 and USB4 siblings—because it’s small and versatile: the port can be used for a variety of things including connecting peripherals, displays and charging.
But if you still need to connect non-USB-C devices to your USB-C laptop or tablet you’ll need a USB-C hub or adapter. This will let you attach external hard drives, memory sticks, DVD drives, phone chargers, wired Gigabit Ethernet connections, and external displays or a projector for meetings.
An adapter usually just replaces one port, while a hub offers multiple ports. For more serious, but less portable, multiport solutions, look for a fully fledged USB-C docking station.
Below the list of our favorites, we explain all the different ports you might require on the hub or adapter; such as USB-A, USB-C, Gigabit Ethernet, SD and microSD card readers, HDMI, DisplayPort, power and audio.
The great news is there is a wide choice of quality USB-C adapters and hubs now available at reasonable prices. Here are our recommendations.
Baseus 8-in-1 USB-C Hub – Best value USB-C hub
You get 8 ports to add to your laptop with Baseus’s good-looking 8-in-1 USB-C Hub. It features excellent PD USB-C pass-through charging (up to 100W) so you don’t lose a valuable USB-C or Thunderbolt 3 port on the laptop if you need to charge or sync. There are three USB-A ports pushing data at 5Gbps but a little underwhelming on device charging at 7.5W each.
There are SD and MicroSD (TF) slots for storage cards, so you can slot in a camera card, or use the flash memory for extra laptop storage.
Gigabit Ethernet is there, too, as is an HDMI port that can support 4K displays at 30Hz—not a refresh rate to excite gamers but enough for most of us.
The business end of the integrated USB-C cable can be stored in a special slot, creating a handy loop to keep things tidy, and could also be used to hang from a hook, if desired. And there’s an LED indicator to show activity.
Baseus has a range of USB-C hubs if you want fewer or more ports; available at Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk.
EZQuest USB-C Multimedia 10-in-1 Gen 2 Hub – Best USB-C hub for fast ports
- 10 ports inc Ethernet, 4K HDMI at 60Hz
- 100W PD
- 2x USB-C (10Gbps, 1 at 7.5W)
- 2x USB-A (5Gbps, 7.5W)
This USB-C hub is bristling with high-end ports, including 4K HDMI at 60Hz (if your device supports DP 1.4) and Gigabit Ethernet.
There are three USB-C ports, one for 100W passthrough charging (88W to the laptop and 10W to the hub for USB device charging) and two rated at 10Gbps for fast data transfer. One of the USB-C ports and both of the 5Gbps USB-A ports can charge connected devices at 7.5W.
Both SD card and MicroSD card readers are included, but at the slower UHS-I speed. A 3.5mm combo In/Out audio port rounds off the impressive 10 ports.
The strong integrated cable measures nearly a foot long, which is longer than on most USB-C hubs reviewed here.
Plugable USB-C 7-in-1 Multifuction hub – Affordable Multiport USB-C hub
The compact and very affordable 7-port Plugable USB-C Multifunction Hub has seven ports from one integrated USB-C connection, including a 4K HDMI output for adding an external display, power pass-through (at an impressive 87W) to charge connected devices, three 5Gbps USB-A ports, and SD and microSD slots.
You can use the HDMI 1.4 port to output to a 4K (at 30Hz) or Full HD 1080p monitor or projector.
Pass-through charging is especially handy if your laptop or USB-C device has just one USB-C port. The 87W power is more than you get from most hubs.
At 88g, it’s lightweight, and, as with many hubs, features a short integrated cable so works well as a portable travel device.
There are a generous three USB-A ports that can also provide 7.5W power pass-through to charge other devices.
There’s just one USB-C port, so look elsewhere if you need more of the newer USB standard.
Wired Internet is also not present, but, fear not, Plugable has a longer 7-in-1 USB-C Hub that drops a USB-A port for Gigabit Ethernet.
Satechi USB4 Multiport Adapter w/2.5G Ethernet – Best USB4 hub for speed
This hub isn’t just USB-C, it’s the latest USB4, so offers full 40Gbps bandwidth for USB4 and Thunderbolt computers, but is also backwards compatible with any USB-C laptop or PC.
It’s built for speed everywhere. Its two USB-C ports (one offering 100W passthrough charging) and one USB-A port are rated at 10Gbps, and the HDMI port can connect an external 4K display at 60Hz—and up to 8K at 60Hz for Windows computers.
Its really special feature is its MultiGig 2.5G Ethernet, 2.5x as fast as Gigabit Ethernet, and perfect for the every latest Wi-Fi 6 routers and networks.
Plugable USB-C 11-in-1 Hub – Best USB-C hub for dual HDMI (Windows)
This hub wins on having the highest number of ports (an incredible 11) of any port reviewed here. This also makes it the longest hub (8.7 inches, 22cm) we have tested.
Its two HDMI ports can support dual 4K external monitors at 60Hz for Windows laptops, but only one at that specification for Mac or two Mac displays that are Mirrored rather than Extended.
The USB ports (1x USB-C and 3x USB-A) are rated at 5Gbps. Some hubs we reviewed boast faster 10Gbps USB ports.
There’s Gigabit Ethernet and SD and MicroSD card readers (only UHS-I rather than faster UHS-II).
Hyperdrive Dual 4K HDMI 10-in-1 USB-C Hub – Best USB-C hub for dual HDMI (Mac)
If you don’t want to pay for a full docking station but require more than one external display, this 10-port hub is as close as you’ll get to a portable dock that supports two monitors. Caldigit’s Thunderbolt 4 Element Hub is another but will require adapters to connect the displays to its Thunderbolt 4 ports.
Owners of Apple’s plain M1 or M2 MacBooks will be delighted that this hub gets past the MacBook’s one-display limitation via some Smart InstantView software.
Windows users ,however, might find better value with Plugable’s cheaper USB-C 11-in-1 Hub, which is not as great for Mac users owing to it not offering two Extended displays with a Mac.
There are one USB-C and two USB-A ports, all at a decent if not super-fast 5Gbps, and a further USB-C port that can passthrough power to the connected devices at 100W (85W to the laptop).
Gigabit Ethernet, UHS-I SD and MicroSD card readers and a combo audio port complete the impressive 10 ports on offer.
Hyperdrive 7-in-1 USB-C Hub Stand – Best combo USB-C hub and laptop stand
This clever hybrid device is both a laptop stand and a 7-port USB-C hub. It may be all you need to carry around with you when travelling and works just as well sat in the home or office.
The portable stand is lightweight and collapsible, raising a laptop (up to 17in) to a healthier viewing angle, with five ergonomic settings.
Along one side are the six built-in ports, and a USB-C PD (100W) to keep your laptop charged via the integrated cable.
There are one 5Gbps USB-C port, two 5Gbps USB-A ports, a 4K 30Hz HDMI video port, and SD and microSD card readers (104MBps UHS-I).
Satechi USB-C Hybrid Multiport Adapter – Best USB-C adapter with SSD enclosure
The Satechi USB-C Hybrid Multiport Adapter isn’t just a 4-port USB-C hub. Its hidden secret is its enclosure that allows you to add SSD storage to boost memory space, backup data, and transfer files at 5Gbps, without taking up an additional USB-C port.
Of course, you can add an SSD drive to most USB-C hubs but this one allows you to carry just one gadget around with you, as the SSD fits inside the adapter. It supports SATA M.2 SSD only (no SSD is included in the price).
There is a 100W USB-C PD charging port (15W is required to run the hub itself), and an impressive 4K 60Hz HDMI display output to connect an external monitor. The two USB-A 3.1 ports support fast data transfer at up to 10Gbps.
Satechi 4-Port USB-C Hub – Best USB-C hub for multiple USB-C
Laptops often have just two USB-C or Thunderbolt ports, so some users will yearn for more of the modern connectors.
Satechi’s well-named 4-Port USB-C Hub boasts four USB-C, which will at least double most laptops’ port count and help add Type-C SSD drives, flash drives, and other peripherals.
The USB-C is rated at 5Gbps.
The 7-port EZQuest USB-C Gen 2 Hub reviewed later is more expensive but includes 4x USB-C ports and 3x USB-A ports, plus 100W passthrough charging.
Nonda USB-C to USB 3.0 Adapter – Best simple USB-C to USB 3.0 adapter
This is your simplest solution to needing to add a USB-A (USB 3.0) device to the USB-C slot on your laptop, Mac or PC.
Quite simply, it’s a one-port male USB-C to female USB 3.0 adapter, rated at 5Gbps. Attach a charging cable, memory stick, or keyboard, etc.
Other adapters have a bunch of ports. This has just the one, and that might be all you need. Actually, it is sold in a pack of two, so it’s doubly useful at a great price.
UGreen USB-C to 4-Port USB 3.0 Hub – Best USB-C hub for old-school USB ports
If all you need is a bunch of older, standard USB-A ports to add a phone charging cable, memory stick or external hard drive, then you won’t need a more versatile hub—just an adapter with a row of USB 3.0 ports.
There are plenty of these about, but for a quality brand take a look at the UGreen USB-C to 4-Port USB 3.0 Hub, which is inexpensive and ultra-portable.
It has four USB 3.0 ports, and even a 12W micro-USB power port for extra power supply for devices that require it—although this is weak and nowhere near enough to charge a laptop!
Even with this handy extra, you should really just consider most of the four ports for data transfer rather than powered devices.
There’s no HDMI, no extra USB-C port for passthrough charging, no memory card slots or Gigabit Ethernet. But who cares: you just want a few old-style USB ports, and this has enough to satisfy the most ardent accessory fan.
Caldigit Thunderbolt 4 Element Hub – Best Thunderbolt 4 hub
- 4x top-end Thunderbolt 4 ports (40Gbps, 15W)
- 4x speedy USB-A ports (10Gbps, 7.5W)
- 60W PD
Backwards compatible and foreseeable-future-proof, Caldigit’s Thunderbolt 4 Element Hub is great for modern laptops that can feel the benefits of the latest connectivity standard. As such, it’s the ultimate USB-C hub.
It boasts four 40GBps Thunderbolt 4 ports (compatible with USB-C, Thunderbolt 3 and Thunderbolt 4) plus four 10Gbps USB-A ports. One of the TB4 ports is upstream, so connects to the computer; the other three are downstream for connecting other devices.
Power delivery to external devices is more impressive than other hubs reviewed here, up to 15W on the Thunderbolt ports.
You can use the TB4 ports to add external USB-C displays or, with a USB-C display adapter, to multiple HDMI or DisplayPort monitors—as well as other devices, all at top speeds. When connected to a Thunderbolt computer the Element Hub can add a monitor up to 8K resolution, or dual 4K 60Hz monitors.
If you need wired Internet access, you can add a USB-C to Gigabit Ethernet adapter.
HyperDrive 6-in-1 USB-C Hub for iPad Pro and Air – Best USB-C hub for iPad
- Built for USB-C iPads
- 6 ports inc 4K HDMI at 60Hz
- Works with any USB-C computer
- 60W PD
iPad Pro and Air (2018 and 2020) users will appreciate this aluminum USB-C hub that turns the tablet’s single USB-C port into six ports: 5Gbps and 60W PD charger, 5Gbps USB-A, 3.5mm audio, HDMI (4K at 60Hz), and UHS-I MicroSD and SD Card readers.
Hyper claims it was the world’s most crowdfunded iPad Pro accessory and USB-C hub.
Available in iPad pro-matching Space Gray or Silver, this good-looking hub features a grip that secures it onto an iPad Pro without damaging the surface. You can remove the grip if you use a third-party iPad case.
It comes with a USB-C extender cable so you can also use it as a USB-C hub for your computers other than the iPad, too, including MacBooks, Windows laptops and other tablets.
Plugable USB-C Dual 4K HDMI MST Adapter – Best for Dual 4K HDMI
The USBC-MSTH2 is a simple, driverless solution for those looking to add screens to their laptop through a single USB-C or Thunderbolt port.
It uses Windows and Chromebook-friendly MST (Multi-Stream Transport) technology that lets users extend or mirror their display onto two additional screens at up to 3840×2160 at 60Hz refresh rate. The laptop needs to support DP 1.4 to support 4K. Laptops with DP 1.2 are limited to HD (1080p) 60Hz across both displays.
Due to the lack of MST, Macs are limited to just one extended display, with a second only mirroring the laptop’s screen.
The adapter supports playback from High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP), a copy-protection scheme that stops the capturing digital content from the source to the display. This means that, unlike some HDMI adapters, it works well with streaming apps such as Netflix, Hulu and ESPN.
EZQuest USB-C Gen 2 Hub Adapter 7-Ports
This USB-C hub eschews HDMI or Ethernet ports for a solid seven USB ports: four modern USB-C and three USB-A, so you can connect old and new devices as you see fit, including Ethernet or HDMI adapters if you need those too. While you may need to buy extra adapters, this hub offers more flexibility.
Three of the USB-C ports are rated at a speedy 10GBps (USB 3.2 Gen. 2) for fast data transfer, with the other at 5Gbps but aimed at 100W pass-through charging for your laptop. The three USB-A ports all offer 5Gbps bandwidth.
The data transfer is excellent but the charging capacity of all but one of the 7 ports is weak.
The integrated USB-C cable is 22cm (9in) long.
Kingston Nucleum 7-port USB-C adapter – 7-port USB-C hub with two USB-C
The quality 7-port Kingston Nucleum boasts seven ports from one USB-C connection, including a 4K HDMI output (30Hz), power pass-through (60W) to charge connected devices, two USB-C (5Gbps) ports, two 5Gbps USB-A ports, and SD and microSD slots.
You can power up a USB-C laptop while also connecting to a USB Flash drive and charging your smartphone. It’s compact in size and lightweight, and features a short built-in cable so works well as a travel accessory.
The two old-school USB-A ports also provide power pass-through to charge devices such as your smartphone or Bluetooth headphones.
One USB-C port on the Nucleum can be used for charging, and the extra USB-C port can connect your other more modern devices for data.
One port it does lack is Gigabit Ethernet. If you’re happy with Wi-Fi, this won’t matter, of course.
Startech.com USB-C Multiport 4-in-1 Video Adapter – Best USB-C adapter for display port choice
The Startech.com USB-C Multiport 4-in-1 Video Adapter can connect your USB-C laptop to a VGA, DVI, HDMI or Mini DisplayPort (mDP) display. It has pretty much everything except full DisplayPort.
The short breakout cable features a magnetic retainer that secures it in place while you’re not using it.
The HDMI and mDP outputs support UHD 4K resolutions. All of the outputs (HDMI, mDP, VGA, DVI) support high-definition resolutions up to 1920 x 1200. The adapter is compatible with USB-C DP Alt Mode devices.
It’s available in Aluminium, Rose Gold, and Space Gray trim, which will please owners of Apple MacBooks—but it will work with Windows laptops too, of course.
TrendNet TUC-ET5G – Best for super-fast Ethernet
Many of the USB-C adapters tested here have a Gigabit Ethernet port, but none except the TrendNet TUC-ET5G can boast 5X gigabit speed for the absolute fastest wired transfers.
This is the first-to-market USB-C to 5GBASE-T (5Gps) Ethernet Adapter that is compatible with existing Cat5e cabling or better. Now you can add super-fast Ethernet (which you usually find only on top-end workstations such as the Mac Pro) to your laptop.
It’s not cheap, but it is the fastest. TrendNet also sells a TUC-ET2G model that can handle 2.5GBASE-T (2.5Gbps), which is about half the price and still 2.5X faster than Gigabit Ethernet. But if you want the very fastest only the TUC-ET5G will do.
Moshi Symbus Q – Best USB-C dock with Q1 wireless charging
- 5 ports inc 4K HDMI at 60Hz and Ethernet
- Up to 15W wireless charging pad
- 60W PD
- 2x USB-A (5Gbps, one fast-charging)
The Moshi Symbus Q is a similar offering to the HyperDrive hub above. It offers slightly less functionality at a slightly higher price, but you’re really paying for the sort of premium finish and build quality that Moshi delivers.
As with the HyperDrive, this is a USB-C hub that doubles as a 15W wireless Qi charger. Beyond that it packs in two USB-A 3.1 ports, 4K HDMI at 60Hz, and Gigabit ethernet, while it offers 60W USB-C PD pass-through charging to whatever laptop it’s plugged into.
The main body is built out of aluminum, so feels pretty sturdy, while there’s a soft fabric and rubber finish to the top to keep any glass-backed phones from sliding around. It’ll also happily charge through most phone cases.
Bear in mind that this only takes power from the mains, so even if you don’t want to use it for charging you’ll still need to plug it in, meaning this is best suited to leaving on your desk, rather than a hub for travelling.
Startech.com USB-C Audio Charge Adapter – Best audio jack adapter
If your laptop, tablet or even USB-C phone lacks a 3.5mm audio jack, then this simple and compact 2-in-1 adapter is what you need if you still use wired headphones, speaker or microphone.
It doesn’t just feature the audio jack, it has a USB-C port for pass-through 60W power delivery (PD). You can attach it to your USB-C wall charger, or untethered it can be bus-powered.
Long in length and connecting directly rather than by cable, it may cover up other ports on your computer.
OWC USB-C Travel Dock E – Mini USB-C dock
The OWC USB-C 6-Port Travel Dock E is tiny, but includes at least one of each port you might need, whether out and about or just on your desk at home or in the office.
There are two 5Gbps USB-A ports, one pass-through USB-C PD port (100W), HDMI 2.0, an SD Card reader (fast UHS-II), and Gigabit Ethernet for wired Internet access.
The version 2.0 HDMI is an upgrade on most adapters with HDMI 1.4, and can get to 60Hz with 4K displays.
At 174g, it’s heavier than most of the USB-C adapters tested here, but we like it compact and robust shape.
Note that the USB-C cable that connects to your computer is quite short (15cm) so it will have to sit right next to the host. Of course, the ports can accept any length of cable for the required devices and accessories.
As a mini dock, rather than in- adapter, it’s compact, solid and well built and includes Gigabit Ethernet.
There is also a slightly cheaper model without Ethernet, although we’d argue that wired Internet access is essential for any device calling itself a dock.
Startech.com USB-C Dual Monitor Multiport Adapter
- Choice of three display ports
- Fast 10Gbps USB-C and USB-A ports
- Wraparound integrated USB-C cable
The Startech.com USB-C Dual Monitor Multiport Adapter is portable but quite chunky, and it features a neat wraparound integrated USB-C cable that is rated at a speedy 10Gbps.
It has two display ports: one HDMI 2.0 that can connect to a 4K display at 60Hz, and a VGA port that offers 1080p HD. Next to these is a fast 10Gbps USB-C port that can connect to a 4K display (using DP Alt Mode) at 60Hz. Sadly, you can’t use all three at the same time, but can mix between the three.
Also included are 10Gbps USB-C and USB-A ports, plus a 100W passthrough USB-C PD port (88W to the laptop). To top it off, there’s a Gigabit Ethernet port to round off a generous collection of ports.
Kensington UH1440P USB-C Dual Video Mobile Dock
The Kensington UH1440P hub has a choice of DisplayPort, HDMI and VGA, although it is limited to a maximum of two external displays, and these would be at 1080p HD only. It does support a single 4K display at 30Hz.
There are three 5Gbps USB-A ports, two of which can charge connected devices at 7.5W. Gigabit Ethernet is included, as is a 3.5mm audio jack, and UHS-I SD and MicroSD card readers.
Passthrough charging via USB-C can power a connected laptop at up to 85W.
Satechi Aluminum Type-C Slim Multi-Port Adapter 4K – Lightweight USB-C hub
Available in a range of colors ( silver, gold, rose gold, and Space Gray) that match Apple’s MacBooks—but compatible with any USB-C laptop—the Satechi Aluminum Type-C Slim Multi-Port Adapter 4K is one of the lightest and smallest multiport USB-C hubs we’ve seen.
Weighing just 46g and both slim and short, the hub/adapter boasts dual USB 3.0 ports for standard accessories and a 4K HDMI port for displays and projectors.
It also has an extra USB-C port for 60W pass-through charging, so you can keep your laptop powered up while it’s in use.
The flexible cable is 15cm long.
What is a USB-C hub?
While these products are often described and named as adapters or dongles (as so many devices hang off them) they are really hubs that take one port on the laptop or tablet and add multiple and varied other connection ports.
If you want something more substantial to anchor your laptop to at home or in the office, with a lot more ports and a proper power supply, you should consider a full USB-C docking station that has even more ports and full power delivery (USB PD) that charges your laptop at the same time.
The latest connection standard is Thunderbolt 4 or USB4. We’ve tested the best Thunderbolt 4 hubs and docks.
First, consider what you need from the hub or adapter. Most are multi-port, so have more than one type of connection functionality included.
USB-A: This is the classic non-reversible USB. Do you just need to attach some accessories—memory stick, hard drive, webcam—that use older standard USB connections? If so, there are many simple adapters at a low cost, and nearly all his boast at least one. Speeds range from 480MBps (USB 2.0) to 5Gbps (USB 3.2 Gen 1) and 10Gbps (USB 3.2 Gen 2).
USB-C: This is the latest reversible USB. There aren’t as many accessories as you’ll find with USB-A, but an extra Type C port can be used for data and, if labelled as such, for pass-through power delivery from a USB-C wall charger.
Thunderbolt: It looks exactly the same as USB-C but Thunderbolt 3 and Thunderbolt 4 are much faster at 40Gbps compared to 5Gbps or 10Gbps. If your laptop boasts either Thunderbolt 3 or 4, it’s wise to buy an adapter, hub or docking station that has the same connection. TB4 is backwards compatible with USB-C and TB3, although some TB3 Windows laptops and PCs might not be supported; all recent Apple MacBooks will be. Check out our roundup of the best Thunderbolt 3 docks and the best Thunderbolt 4 docks.
USB4: Using the same connector as USB-C, USB4 is, like Thunderbolt, a more sophisticated and often faster connection standard.
Make sure you check the USB speed rating when choosing your hub, as they range from 480Mbps (USB 2.0) to 40Gbps (USB4, Thunderbolt 3 or 4). Learn more about the differences between USB-C, USB4, Thunderbolt 3 and Thunderbolt 4.
HDMI: Need an HDMI port for your laptop? There are plenty of USB-C hubs that include HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface), including 4K. Most of the HDMI-packing hubs listed here support 4K displays at 30Hz rather than the fully powered 60Hz 4K that offers higher graphics for sharper video and gaming.
DisplayPort: These, er, display ports are more often found on full docking stations (see link above) but you can buy USB-C DisplayPort adapters.
VGA: This is quite an old video port rarely found on modern displays, but if you are moving between offices a lot (or have an old monitor), then the option might be useful to you.
Power: Some laptops and most tablets have just one USB-C port, so add an adapter and you have nothing left to charge your computer at the same time. In which case, you should look for a hub with an extra USB-C Power Delivery (PD) port so you can continue to power your laptop while using the adapter.
This is known as passthrough charging. 85W and over will power most laptops at full speed. The best docks will offer enough power for the connected devices as well as the laptop, but a well-powered hub might be enough if you don’t use all the ports at the same time. Remember that for most you will need a separate wall charger to supply this pass-through power—your laptop charger should suffice. Check out our Best USB-C Chargers roundup for a selection of recommended PD chargers.
Tablets mostly require less power. For example, the 12in iPad Pro will charge at full speed at around 40W.
Ethernet: Even with Wi-Fi so prevalent you still can’t beat the speed of a wired Ethernet connection, still found in hotels and of course from your router. If so, you want a hub with an RJ45 Ethernet port – and make sure it’s a Gigabit Ethernet connection for faster data transfer. Much more expensive adapters use the latest 2.5GBASE-T or 5GBASE-T ports that provide multi-gigabit speeds capable of up to 5Gbps over existing Cat5e or better cabling. But 1Gbps Ethernet will be speedy enough for most.
Memory cards: Fewer laptops these days include memory-card slots—certainly none from Apple. If these are important to you, look for SD-, MicroSD- and TF-card slots on the hub or adapter. You can quickly and very cheaply add portable storage to your laptop setup. Most of the USB-C hubs reviewed here offer the slower UHS-I (104MBps) rathr than UHS-II (312MBps). If you want the fastest card redaers, look instead to a USB-C dock.
Audio: Many people use wireless Bluetooth headphones and speakers, but if you want to connect wired headphones or speakers to your laptop, then you need a 3.5mm audio jack on your hub.
Second, think about portability. If it’s your laptop that uses USB-C then you are likely to want the hub to travel with you and not be a giant brick. So, look for portability in size and weight. There are enough small and lightweight adapters that you can slip in your laptop bag or even and not notice.
And third, of course, is the price. There are certainly some very cheap USB-C adapters out there, but we’ve tried to pick the quality end of the market (but still at reasonable prices) so you don’t risk the safety of your device or even home with a dangerously cheap adapter.
Cables: Read our roundup of the best USB-C cables if this is all you’re looking for.
Docking stations: Larger, abler (and usually less portable) docks can include many more ports and connect dual displays at 4K in Extended Mode; see our Best USB-C docking stations roundup for more choices.
Bluetooth 4.0 Nano USB Adapter
UB400 makes Non-Bluetooth PCs or laptops Bluetooth-capable. Simply plug in the UB400, connect your Bluetooth devices and enjoy.
Bluetooth Headset Game Controller Bluetooth Mouse Bluetooth Keyboard Bluetooth Printers Smartphone/Tablet
Plug and Play for Win 8, Win 8.1, and Win 10
For Win 8, Win 8.1, and Win 10, just plug UB400 into your computer to enjoy a fast, convenient Bluetooth connection.
For Win 7/XP, you need to install the driver from https://www.tp-link.com/en/download/UB400.html
Nano-Sized — Plug it in and forget
A sleek, ultra-small design means you can insert the nano adapter into any USB port and simply keep it there, no matter where you go.
- 0.74 in 0.58 in 0.27 in
- 0.96 in
Broad Operation Range
With a transmission distance of up to 65 ft., you can enjoy music via your Bluetooth headset without hovering around your computer.
Maximum wireless Bluetooth transmission rates are based upon test results under normal usage conditions. Actual wireless transmission rate and wireless coverage are not guaranteed, and will vary as a result of environmental factors, including building materials, physical objects and obstacles. Claimed coverage is based on theoretical testing scenario in an open air environment.
To ensure compatibility, you may need to update the adapter’s drivers after an OS update. You can find our latest drivers in the download center at tp-link.com/en/download-center.
Actual network speed may be limited by the rate of the product’s Ethernet WAN or LAN port, the rate supported by the network cable, Internet service provider factors and other environmental conditions.
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Docking Station vs. USB Hub – What’s the Difference?
As the world gets more fast-paced, the demand for portability using tech gadgets has enhanced to stay connected through the world every moment on the go. Today it’s almost impossible to imagine going without a portable device like a smartphone or laptop. Hence, you can see a drastic shift in the market from PC to notebooks.
This is where the war of docking station vs. USB Hub steps in to fill the marginal gap between PC and laptop workstation. As manufacturers strive for portability, docking stations and USB Hubs offer a great solution for organizing and connecting various devices. Even though they share functionality, they are separate categories of hardware. So to know what is suitable for you, get insight into their differences.
What is a docking station?
A docking station can unite a range of connections through one single-most device. However, the docking station number and type can vary from one station to another. In a docking station, you can expect a varied number of ports compared to the edges of your laptop computer. When making your laptop a full-featured workstation, its screen becomes the brain while the docking station handles all the adapter work.
This makes your work more convenient as you don’t have to shift things around every time you need to use a stand-alone adapter for adapting and converting, as it can also connect various external displays, additional USB ports, Ethernet ports, etc. So it works more than just a cable connection, and through a converter, it helps translate between the computer and the device.
What is a USB Hub?
USB Hubs are miniature versions of docking stations. Hubs help expand the number of ports you want to use in your tech gadgets, especially for laptops. Depending on the requirements, users can use USB-A or USB-C, which serve as splitters to enable plugging in more devices into the given port.
Usually, a USB hub pulls power from the laptop. But since they are lightweight and small, they are easily portable. Today, some high-end USB hubs come with Ethernet and power ports. These are the perfect solution for extending the capability of your existing ports, whether you are using a desktop or laptop.
Difference between USB Hub and Docking Station
People use docking stations and USB hubs to extend the available ports in the laptop or PC for a better connectivity experience. Since your computer device comes with a limited number of ports, it can be a hassle for you when attaching or detaching additional gadgets in an organized way. Even with most modern tech devices today that come with Wi-Fi connectivity, many prefer wired connectivity for more stability and reliability.
This is where you can use a USB Hub and a docking station; both can boost your functionality. Knowing their similarities, now you know how you can use them. Let’s get to know the difference between USB hub and docking station. That would be helpful to decide which one to choose for your requirements.
The major difference between USB hubs and docking stations comes in their capabilities. A USB hub would draw power from your computing device and power up the connected peripherals. Since the USB hub can’t power up a laptop, it comes with a USB-C Power Delivery input port. This way, you can connect the laptop charger to the port connected to your main power outlet to charge your laptop, forming a pass-through charging system. Due to their lightweight and smaller size, they are mainly used as port replicators.
Docking stations are heavier compared to USB Hubs. But if you are to know what are the advantages of the docking station, they offer more robust performance and versatility. Some docking stations can be stationary, while some are portable. The stationary docking stations draw power from a wall outlet through an AC/DC power adapter to charge your PC or laptop swiftly.
But a portable docking station would draw power from your computing device. The portable forms of these connectivity gadgets can offer you the best experience with more functionality. You can use USB-C Hub and docking stations to add more ports to your laptop workstation for a whole desktop experience.
What are the advantages of docking station?
- Turn your laptop computer into a desktop setup as your workstation
- Provide full connectivity to monitors, internet, printers, LAN and more
- Create a tidier desk surface with monitor cables routed to the laptop docking station rear
- Proceed through large data, graphic files, and videos with a dock supporting various laptop connection
What are the advantages of USB Hub?
- Connect all your USB hard drives at once and simultaneously to transfer files
- USB Hubs with SD card slots enable you to transfer files directly from the port hub
- Run various devices at once without slowing down PC performance
- Handle a large number of PC components
When do you need to buy a USB-C hub or docking station?
Many reasons and requirements may arise in your life when you would be required to invest in a USB-C hub or a docking station. If you are using a laptop as a desktop replacement, using one of these gadgets can transform your experience. USB-C can be quite helpful for remote workers to handle work-life balance.
Whether you are a regular traveler or someone who doesn’t prefer juggling through multiple devices can use a USB Hub or docking station. You may want to buy these connectivity devices if you are a multitasker using several Windows simultaneously and various peripherals plugged in.
UGREEN 10-in-1 USB C Hub: This is a versatile and compact device that allows you to expand the capabilities of your laptop or computer. With 4K HDMI, you can connect to an external monitor or TV to enjoy stunningly clear and detailed visuals. This hub also features a USB C PD charging port, which allows you to charge your laptop or other USB C devices while using the hub. Additionally, it has multiple USB 3.0 ports, an SD card reader and a TF card reader, which provides you more options for data transfer, allowing you to easily connect peripherals such as hard drives, cameras, and flash drives. The hub is also lightweight and portable, making it easy to take with you on the go.
Ugreen USB C Triple Display Docking Station: This is an innovative and versatile device that allows users to connect multiple devices to a single USB-C port. This docking station supports three HDMI displays, providing users with a multi-monitor setup that is perfect for work or entertainment. It also features USB-C and USB-A ports, allowing users to connect peripherals such as keyboards, mice, and external hard drives. Additionally, the docking station is equipped with a Gigabit Ethernet port, providing users with fast and stable internet connectivity.
When you want to boost the functionality of your equipment with more connection capabilities, using a docking station or USB Hub can integrate all additional tools or peripherals you require. Knowing the difference between Docking Station vs. USB Hub allows you to choose the right one that solely relies on your requirements.
What is a Bluetooth Dongle and How to Choose the Best One?
Adding a Bluetooth dongle to PC or Mac devices seems like a reasonably straightforward process. However, a lot of things can go wrong, not to your fault. On this page, we won’t try to convince you why you need a Bluetooth dongle, but we will share tips on how you can add it to your computer. We’ll even help you choose the right Bluetooth dongle based on your personal needs.
If you also worry that you don’t have a Bluetooth feature on your PC or Mac because you have an older model, we’ll also share useful advice on adding a Bluetooth adapter to your device. Let’s just get to it.
STEP 1. Check if Your Computer has Bluetooth
Before you can connect your Bluetooth device, you need to check if your computer has a Bluetooth option in the first place. Here’s how to check it on Mac and Windows devices, starting with the latter:
- Open “Start” and then look up “Device Manager” in it.
- Look for the “Bluetooth” mark. If you find it, your Windows PC has built-in Bluetooth. If not, it doesn’t have such capabilities.
- Open the Apple Menu and click on the Apple logo in the top-left corner.
- Select the “About this Mac” option to open the pop-up window.
- Select “System Report” and expand the “Hardware” section
- Look for the “Bluetooth” heading. If you don’t see it, your Mac device doesn’t have a built-in Bluetooth.
How to Add Bluetooth to Your Computer?
If you’ve determined that your computer doesn’t have Bluetooth capabilities, you’ll need to add this feature manually. Luckily, this isn’t an uphill task and won’t take up much of your time or money.
The only thing you need is a Bluetooth adapter. It comes in the form of a simple USB dongle and, don’t worry; you don’t have to look up how to use a Bluetooth adapter. You don’t even need to know how does a Bluetooth dongle work. All you need to do is to plug the USB Bluetooth adapter dongle into your computer, and you’re good to go.
STEP 2. Find a Bluetooth Dongle that Best Fits Your Need
To know which Bluetooth dongle will best fit your needs, you first need to understand what a Bluetooth dongle does. In simple terms, Bluetooth technology allows devices to communicate with each other over short distances through high-frequency wireless technology.
The list of reasons why you might need a Bluetooth dongle is fairly extensive. The most notable uses for a Bluetooth dongle include wireless communication with cell phones and desktop computers, wireless printing, file transfers, and network sharing. Even wireless keyboard and mouse devices are a typical example which most of us often overlook.
Which Bluetooth Dongle to Buy?
With Bluetooth adapters and dongles flooding the tech market, singling out specific products can be challenging if you don’t know what you primarily look for. So, which is the best dongle to buy?
In truth, there’s no across-the-board answer, as your choice will ultimately depend on your needs and preferences. But, to help you out, we’ll highlight the most critical factors you should pay attention to when choosing a Bluetooth dongle:
- Transmission Range. The most obvious thing to pay attention to, the overall transmission range can be the difference-maker in your user experience. Although the connection’s quality is equally crucial as distance itself, never overlook transmission range when choosing a Bluetooth adapter.
- OS Support. Range, network stability, and performance are irrelevant if the dongle you buy isn’t compatible with your OS. Ideally, a dongle should be compatible with all major platforms. It should also have an available US 2.0 or 1.2 port.
- Bluetooth Version. Another crucial aspect to pay attention to is the adapter’s Bluetooth version. Buying any version that’s lower than 4.0 will disappoint you. It simply can’t provide you with the range and performance characteristics modern users have grown used to. Versions 4.0 and higher are not only better performers but also consume less energy. This is especially important for laptop users.
STEP 3. Set Up Your Dongle and Use it With Bluetooth Devices
In this guide, we will use the Hideez USB Bluetooth Dongle to demonstrate the setup process. This dongle is compatible with various versions of macOS, Windows, and Linux. Itoffers a range of up to 20 meters (65 ft.) and there is free shipping available to customers located in the US, UK, and EU regions. Let’s proceed with the step-by-step guide for setting up this Bluetooth dongle on Windows.
How to Set Up Your Bluetooth Dongle on Windows
Setting up your Bluetooth dongle on Windows is straightforward. To help you make sure that this process goes without a hitch, we’ve created a detailed step-by-step guide you can follow as you go. Here’s how to connect Bluetooth dongle to PC Windows 10:
Insert the Bluetooth dongle in your computer’s USB port.2. Open the Device Manager and Bluetooth will appear.
Go to “Settings”, click on “Bluetooth and other devices” and choose the “Add Bluetooth or other device” option
Select the device of your choice and pair up!
How to Set Up Your Bluetooth Dongle on Mac
Setting up the Bluetooth dongle on your macOS device requires slightly different installation steps, but don’t worry, as the process is not more complicated than with the Windows counterpart. Here’s how you can set up your Bluetooth dongle on Mac devices:
- Insert the Bluetooth dongle in your computer’s USB port.
- Reboot your computer.
- When your computer reboots, you can choose between two options. You can send a special command to the system through the command line and allow the Hideez Bluetooth Dongle by default. Alternatively, you can install the Bluetooth Explorer application to set up the Bluetooth device.
How to Fix Bluetooth Pairing Issues?
If you’ve followed this guide, you’ve most likely managed to connect your Bluetooth dongle to your device. However, in some cases, the pairing might still fail because of many different reasons. Bluetooth requires both hardware and software to work together without a fault, and if the two can’t find a common language, connection issues happen.
If you haven’t managed to connect your Bluetooth dongle even though you’ve followed all of the above steps, you’ll have to engage in a bit of problem-solving to determine the root of the issue. Here are a couple of useful tips that will help you fix your Bluetooth pairing issues:
- Remove Old Bluetooth Connections. If you’ve previously connected the dongle to a different device, you might experience issues with it trying to connect to the old connection instead of the new one. If you’re having such trouble, it’s best to reset your device and start fresh with the new connection.
- Power Off and Back On. The old and proven method of simply performing a soft reset can often do the trick. This is even simpler if you’re setting up Bluetooth on your mobile device, as you don’t even need to turn it off. Just go in and out of airplane mode.
- Get Away from Your Wi-Fi. Since Wi-Fi and Bluetooth operate in a relatively close spectrum, you might experience interference if you’re trying to connect to Bluetooth while near a Wi-Fi device. Move away from your router, and you just might find that your Bluetooth will start working.
- Charge Up The Device. Modern computers and laptops have a Smart power management function to preserve themselves when their battery is running low. They automatically turn off any functions that drain the battery too much, including Bluetooth. For this reason, you should always make sure that your device has enough juice before pairing it up.
- Update Your Device’s Firmware. If you can’t connect to your PC or Mac, consider that the issue could be coming from the device itself. Check if you have the latest firmware and update it to pair up with the Bluetooth dongle.
In conclusion, Bluetooth dongles can be a great solution for connecting your devices wirelessly. If you’re looking for an affordable, compact, and versatile option, the Hideez USB Bluetooth dongle is a fantastic choice. And for those of you who have read through to the end of this article, we have a bonus offer. Use the promo code “10dongle” during checkout to receive a 10% discount on the Hideez USB Bluetooth dongle. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to get an excellent product at an even better price!