The new GaNPrime line could let you leave a laptop’s bulky power brick at home, assuming it doesn’t need more than 100W of power.
The batteries in your mobile devices continue to be disappointingly limiting, but at least the technology in chargers continues to rapidly evolve so you can quickly top up your gear when you find a power outlet. Anker’s new GaNPrime chargers now promise up to 150W of power delivery from a relatively small brick, giving you enough capacity to charge multiple devices at higher speeds.
Last week, Anker announced it had teamed up with two companies, Infineon and Navitas. to help develop a new line-up of higher-watt gallium nitride chargers capable of outputting up to 15oW of power (in total). The chargers would have improved efficiency while maintaining a compact form factor for easy portability.
Anker calls its new technology GaNPrime, and it includes the next generation of the company’s proprietary fast charging standard: PowerIQ 4.0, which offers charging speeds for individual devices up to 1ooW over USB-C, plus Dynamic Power Allocation to ensure that devices with the lowest charge level get higher priority when several are plugged into a charger at the same time. If your laptop’s battery is doing okay but your smartphone is near death, PowerIQ 4.0 will make sure your phone is charged at its maximum speed, while limiting power to the laptop to accommodate it.
A week after revealing the partnerships behind the technology in the company’s new gallium nitride fast chargers, Anker has revealed its GaNPrime charger line-up, with several options that balance power output, portability, and accessibility with various devices.
Anker 747 Charger (GaNPrime 150W)
The flagship of Anker’s new GaNPrime lineup is the 747 charger, which, from what we can tell, shares nothing with the iconic jumbo jet other than its name. The 747 is available today for 110, and Anker boasts that it’s 38% smaller than Apple’s 99 140W MacBook Pro charger. while including three USB-C ports plus an additional USB-A port. However, each USB-C port on the Anker 747 maxes out at 100W output, while Apple’s USB-C PD 3.1-compliant MacBook charger can deliver a full 140W through its single USB-C port.
Anker’s latest and greatest still isn’t powerful enough to keep a beefier gaming laptop running while charging its battery. For now the “world’s smallest” 240W GaN charger is still quite beefy, and that’s assuming you’ve got a USB-C PD 3.1-compatible laptop that can handle that much power over USB-C. What Anker’s new GaNPrime chargers are offering are the ability to charge a couple of low-power laptops over USB-C at the same time, or a laptop plus a device like the Nintendo Switch, without needing to pack multiple power bricks when traveling.
Anker 735 737 Charger (GaNPrime 65W 120W)
For those wanting an even smaller footprint, the new Anker 735 and 737 GaNPrime chargers slim down the 747 while still each featuring two USB-C ports and a single USB-A port. The cheaper 60 Anker 735 maxes out at 65W of power output in total, while the 95 Anker 737 can hit 120W in total, with up to 100W through one of its USB-C ports.
Anker 615 USB Power Strip (GaNPrime 65W)
For those wanting the flexibility of charging USB devices as well as other devices with propriety charging cables requiring access to an AC outlet, the 70 Anker 615 is an all-in-one power strip with a removable silicone sleeve revealing a longer extension cord hidden inside—perfect for putting a charger on a hotel room’s bedside table when the nearest AC wall outlet is hidden behind the bed. The Anker 615 offers two USB-C ports, a single USB-A port, and a pair of AC outlets, but USB-C power output is limited to 65W.
Anker 733 Power Bank (GaNPrime PowerCore 65W)
The 100 Anker 733 Power Bank offers similar power delivery to the Anker 735, topping out at 65W of power through two USB-C ports and a single USB-A port, but that’s only when plugged into a wall outlet. As the name implies, the Anker 733 Power Bank also features a 10,000 mAh rechargeable battery built in, but when charging devices using the battery alone, the power output is reduced to just 30W max.
Anker’s 150W charger has completely changed how I charge my gadgets
Let’s face it: chargers aren’t an exciting thing to talk about. Everyone uses them, and they’re a necessity for any modern tech gadget. But reading an entire article where someone gushes over how cool a charger is? Sounds pretty nerdy!
Well, buckle up, nerds, because that’s exactly what I’m doing for the next few hundred words. A few months ago, Anker sent me the 747 Charger — the latest addition to its GaNPrime lineup of chargers. It’s probably smaller than the fast charger you’re currently using, has significantly more ports, and is a whole lot smarter, too. It’s not the flashiest piece of tech I’ve used this year, but easily one of the most impactful.
Heavy on ports, light on size
The biggest immediate benefit of the Anker 747 is its port selection — flaunting three USB-C ports and one USB-A port. Amazon has no shortage of multi-device chargers with five, six, or even ten ports, but those are almost always limited to slow USB-A outputs.
What’s impressive about the 747 is that you have three high-speed USB-C outputs at your disposal, plus that full-size USB-A port when you need that instead. And even more impressive is how Anker crammed all of those ports into a shockingly small body.
Despite offering a max power output of 150W, the Anker 747 is smaller than both the 140W and 96W chargers Apple includes with the M1 MacBook Pro. And don’t forget — those offer just a single USB-C port with less total power output. Hell, it’s honestly not that much bigger than Apple’s 30W charger. It’s a ridiculous amount of ports/power for a charger of its size, and that’s been a huge reason why I’ve been using it so much.
When I’m home, the Anker 747 stays plugged into the power outlet by my nightstand. It powers a MagSafe charger for my iPhone, an Apple Watch charger, and always has two free ports when I need to connect something else. And when I’m traveling, the 747’s allowed me to go from lugging three-to-four chargers to just one.
It’s not that those multiple chargers took up a ton of room in my backpack/suitcase, but the peace of mind is incredible. Instead of triple-checking that I have every single charger I’ll need for a trip, I now just have to make sure I packed the Anker 747. If I did, I know I’m good to go.
Fast, Smart, and reliable charging
But it’s not just the Anker 747’s design that’s kept me coming back. I also love the charger because of how fast it is. If you’re just using one port, the Anker 747 has a max power output of 100W. But if you use two, three, or all four ports, it kicks out 150W of charging horsepower. That’s more than enough speed to fast-charge an iPhone 14 Pro, Pixel 7 Pro, or Galaxy Z Fold 4. Hell, you can even quickly charge large tablets and laptops like a 2022 iPad Pro or M2 MacBook Air.
What’s especially cool, though, isn’t the rate at which the Anker 747 chargers devices, but how that charging happens. Using its PowerIQ 4.0 tech, the Anker 747 can detect the current battery life of devices plugged into it and prioritize charge speed to whatever needs it the most.
Hell, you can even quickly charge large tablets and laptops.
Say you plug in an iPhone 14 with 50% battery remaining and a Pixel 7 with just 10% battery left. The Anker 747 knows the Pixel is lower, and therefore knows to charge it faster. And this isn’t a feature you have to manually enable at any point — it’s just always running in the background and ready to go.
This is far less flashy than a retro battery pack with a transparent design, but it adds a level of reliability that I appreciate far, far more. There’s no guesswork involved when it comes time to charge. I just plug everything in, walk away, and know that everything’s going to charge quickly and efficiently.
My new go-to charger
Before getting the Anker 747, my charging setup was … not great. I have a smattering of single-device USB-C chargers in my office and would typically just grab the nearest one when something needed a top-up. It was an inefficient and clunky method, but it’s the habit I fell into.
Anker 747 Charger
The Anker 747 has completely broken that habit, and for the better. It’s changed my charging life both at home and while traveling, and it’s made my life significantly easier because of it. Is it something I actively think about every day? No. But I use the 747 every day and am regularly thankful for just how good it is at what it does.
There aren’t many chargers I would recommend spending over 100 on, but the Anker 747 is more than deserving of its 110 asking price. And, apparently, it’s also worth around 800 words of nerdy praise.
Joe Maring is the Section Editor for Digital Trends’ Mobile team, leading the site’s coverage for all things smartphones…
Many iPhone owners these days have more than just their smartphone to charge up at night. because of Apple’s robust product ecosystem, an iPhone is often joined by an Apple Watch and a set of Airpods, and there’s no shortage of accessories designed to make it easy to manage and charge these devices together.
Such is the case with the 130 Ugreen 3-in-1 MagSafe Charging Station, which takes advantage of the MagSafe technology built into iPhone 12 and newer models. Ugreen’s charging station holds your phone in place while fast charging it and juices up your Apple Watch and a set of Airpods (or other small wireless charge-capable earphones) at the same time. It’s an impressive-sounding package on paper. But what’s it like to use? MagSafe vs. magnetic charging
Low-battery anxiety is real. The fear of running out of battery while I’m on my way home has bothered me for as long as I can remember using flagship smartphones. It was only two months back when I bought the most expensive slab phone that helped me end my battery anxiety.
Even almost a year since its release, the iPhone 13 Pro Max is still the battery champ in 2022. No flagship smartphone of the current year comes close to last year’s top-notch iPhone in terms of battery life. And with the way I use my phones, it’s been something of a game-changer. The iPhone 13 Pro Max is still the battery king in 2022
Anker has just unveiled the next generation of Gallium Nitride (GaN) technology with a series of powerful new chargers that can keep up with even your most power-hungry mobile devices on the go while still letting you travel light.
The company’s new lineup of GaNPrime chargers offers power levels from 65 watts to 150 watts while coming in at up to 53% smaller than most other chargers. And thanks to the new PowerIQ 4.0 feature enabled by the latest advancements in GaN technology, Anker’s multiport GaNPrime chargers can dynamically adjust the power output on the fly to ensure that every connected device gets the current it needs for the fastest and most efficient charging.
Upgrade your lifestyleDigital Trends helps readers keep tabs on the fast-paced world of tech with all the latest news, fun product reviews, insightful editorials, and one-of-a-kind sneak peeks.
Best Thunderbolt 4 and USB4 hubs and docks
Thunderbolt 4 and USB4 hubs and docks are the latest technologies in computer connectivity and expansion. They take over from Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C hubs and docks, with significant future-proof benefits while staying backwards compatible with the older connectivity standards.
Hubs and docks allow you to add more types of connections to your main computer if it lacks them itself—particularly with laptops that might have just a few ports on the side.
Desktop PCs and Macs usually have a decent set of ports at front and back, but laptops and tablets often have just a couple.
You will therefore need to connect a multifunction adapter, hub or a more able docking station that includes the ports and slots you need to add extra devices such as hard drives, memory sticks, storage-card readers, printers and so on, as well as wired input tools such as a keyboard or mouse.
They are also the best way to add an external display or two to your more mobile computer, plus Gigabit (or faster) Ethernet for wired Internet access.
All the docks and hubs tested here support at least two external 4K displays at 60Hz; a single 8K display (Windows); or a single 6K display (Mac).
We’ve seen rising on docking stations due to component shortages, particularly on the Caldigit docks tested here.
Thunderbolt 4 and USB4
The latest connection standards are Thunderbolt 4 and USB4, which are both based on the neat reversible USB-C connector seen on most new computing devices.
They supersede older USB 3.0/USB-A connectors and also slower USB-C variants in terms of speed, but are backwards compatible with USB-C and Thunderbolt 3.
USB-A (the old rectangular connector that had to go in one way, usually not the first way you tried) usually maxed at a bandwidth of 5Gbps (USB 3.0) but could be as slow as 480MBps (USB 2.0). Many of the models tested here include faster 10GBps USB-A. Look out for device charging potential, too, with up to 7.5W on offer with some docks and hubs.
USB-C started at 5Gbps but is also available at up to 20Gbps, although 10Gbps is more common at the upper end. Again, look for high device-charging–20W is the best we’ve seen from USB-C.
Thunderbolt 3 (TB3) can reach 40Gbps, but, unlike Apple, some Windows PC manufacturers didn’t choose to offer all TB3’s benefits.
Thunderbolt 4 (TB4) and USB4 require manufacturers to comply with all the technology’s benefits (such as 40Gbps bandwidth) to be certified, which makes TB4 much more trustworthy to PC users than TB3.
Apple users won’t see much difference between TB3 and TB4, but there are extra benefits such as the ability to better daisy-chain devices. With TB3 a device chain could be disrupted with the removal of any but the final device in the chain.
Many hub and dock manufacturers advise Windows users that their device needs to be certified for Thunderbolt 4 or USB4 due to previous connectivity-standard inconsistency. Mac users will be fine with older USB-C (12in MacBook) and Thunderbolt 3 systems.
You can still use Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C docking stations, but you’ll miss out on Thunderbolt 4’s advancements.
TB4/USB4 also offers faster PCIe (peripheral component interconnect express) at 32Gbps for storage speeds up to 3,000MBps—double the minimum requirements of Thunderbolt 3, although more recent MacBooks have this already. Some of the early TB3 MacBooks had less bandwidth available on the right-hand-side Thunderbolt ports.
After our roundup of the best Thunderbolt 4 hubs and docks, we go into more detail about each type of port or connection that you need.
Caldigit Thunderbolt Station 4 – Best Thunderbolt 4 dock
- 18 top-end ports
- 2.5Gb Ethernet
- 230W power
- DisplayPort 1.4 handles high 4K refresh rates
- Flexible design
One upstream Thunderbolt 4 port (40Gbps, 98W) Two downstream Thunderbolt 4 ports (40Gbps, 15W) One DisplayPort 1.4 video port Five USB-A ports (10Gbps, 7.5W) One USB-C port (10Gbps, 20W) Two USB-C ports (10Gbps, 7.5W) 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet UHS-II SD and microSD card readers (320MBps) 3.5mm combo audio jack (front) 3.5mm Audio In and Audio Out ports (back) 230W power supply
For years, Caldigit ruled the Thunderbolt 3 roost with its compact but powerful Thunderbolt Station 3 Plus (TS3 Plus). Its Thunderbolt 4 successor, the Thunderbolt Station 4 (TS4) is physically and stylistically similar but boasts even more ports at even faster speeds.
All the USB (5x USB-A, 3x USB-C) and Thunderbolt ports (3x TB4) are super fast and offer impressive device charging—at the front, there’s a USB-C port with 20W power.
Caldigit has sacrificed one of the TB4 ports for a dedicated DisplayPort, which is fine if you need that video port but not as flexible as leaving three downstream TB4 ports with which you can add adapters for external displays.
Windows users with a TB4 or USB4 computer can connect a single 8K display at 60Hz; Mac users, a single 6K display at 60Hz. Older Intel Macs and newer M1 Pro and M1 Max MacBooks can connect two 4K displays at 60Hz, although plain M1 MacBooks are sadly limited to just the one external display. Boasting version 1.4 of DisplayPort, this dock can support very high refresh rates on a single monitor: 144Hz on 4K, and 240Hz at 2560×1440-pixel resolution.
Wired Internet is 2.5 times faster than you’ll find on any other dock or hub tested here, if you have 2.5GbE (or above) compatible devices.
The 230W power supply is the most powerful of any dock we’ve tested, and the dock can charge a laptop at 98W.
The Caldigit TS4 has the most ports at the fastest speeds and the greatest power, making it our number one choice if you want the very best.
Caldigit Thunderbolt 4 Element Hub – Best Thunderbolt 4 hub
- Four Thunderbolt 4 ports
- Four fast USB-A ports with 7.5W charging
- 150W power supply
One upstream Thunderbolt 4 port (40Gbps, 60W) Three downstream Thunderbolt 4 ports (40Gbps, 15W) Four USB-A ports (10Gbps, 7.5W) 150W power supply
You won’t find any more modern USB ports on a hub or docking station than you get with Caldigit’s compact and well-priced Thunderbolt 4 / USB4 Element Hub, and they are all rated at top speeds.
It boasts four Thunderbolt 4 (all at 40Gbps bandwidth and 15W charging) and four USB-A 3.2 Gen.2 (10Gbps and 7.5W) ports. That’s more than any other Thunderbolt 4 hub we have seen or tested.
One of the TB4 ports is Upstream, for connection to your computer. The other three are Downstream, for connecting other devices.
Caldigit’s Thunderbolt 4 Element Hub is not a docking station by strict definition but it has so many USB ports (both Type A and Type C) that it can certainly be used as a dock if you have the right external device ports or adapters for adding external displays.
If used as a dock, the Element Hub is one of the smallest you’ll find with its own power supply
At 150W, the power supply should accommodate most of your needs, with up to 60W reserved for powering the laptop or tablet—enough for all but the biggest, meanest laptops.
Kensington SD5700T Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station – Best Thunderbolt 4 hub for TB4 ports
One upstream Thunderbolt 4 port (40Gbps, 90W) Three Thunderbolt 4 ports (40Gbps, 15W) Three USB-A ports (10Gbps, 4.5W) One USB-A port (480MBps, 7.5W) Gigabit Ethernet UHS-II SD Card reader (320MBps) 3.5mm audio jack 180W power supply
As you’d expect from Kensington, the SD5700T Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station is a quality build with everything a dock should have: four TB4 ports, three fast USB-A and one slow one (that at least boasts 7.5W charging power compared to the faster USB-A 3.2 Gen 2 ports’ 4.5W), Gigabit Ethernet, SD Card reader, and audio jack.
At 180W, the power supply is the best we’ve seen in all our hub and dock tests—great if you are powering multiple devices connected to the dock.
There are useful lights telling you when the dock is powered and when it’s connected, and we like the On/Off button, too.
We think paying a little extra for this dock is worthwhile, especially when you factor in the three-year warranty.
In the US there is another variant model, the Kensington SD5780T dock, that drops one of the three downstream Thunderbolt 4 ports in favor of an HDMI 2.1 port—so is maybe aimed more at the PC market where Thunderbolt is less prevalent a feature as it is for Macs. Power via the host Thunderbolt 4 port also slightly increases, from 90W to 96W, but it’s also 50 more expensive.
Plugable Thunderbolt 4 USB4 Quad Display Docking Station – Best Thunderbolt 4 dock for multiple displays
- One upstream Thunderbolt 4 port (40Gbps, 98W)
- Two DisplayPort 1.2 video ports
- Two HDMI 2.0 video ports
- Three USB-A ports (10Gbps, 4.5W)
- Two USB-A ports (5Gbps, 4.5W)
- One USB-A ports (480MBbps, 7.5W)
- One USB-C port (10Gbps, 7.5W)
- 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet
- UHS-II SD and microSD card readers (320MBps)
- 3.5mm combo audio jack (front)
- 135W power supply
This Thunderbolt 4 docking station differs from other reviewed here in one very specific way: it lacks any downstream Thunderbolt ports. This may strike you as crazy, but there’s a very good reason for the missing TB4 ports—it’s built for multiple-screen setups using both HDMI and DisplayPort rather than Thunderbolt/USB-C monitor connections, and can handle up to four external displays.
Windows users with Thunderbolt 4 and many USB4 laptops can connect up to four 4K (3840×2160) 60Hz displays using this dock, mixing the display connectors as they see fit.
MacBook Pro (M1/M2 Pro and M1/M2 Max) users and owners of less advanced Windows laptops, on the other hand, are limited to at most two 4K 60Hz displays. And plain M1 and M2 Macs are limited to just one external display, so this is not the dock you are looking for if you own a Mac.
The TBT4-UDZ’s DisplayPorts are 1.2 rather than 1.4, so can’t connect a single display at 5K, 6K or 8K (unlike the TS4 that does). This dock is for multiple high-resolution displays rather than fewer super-resolution screens.
The other 11 ports include super-fast 2.5Gb Ethernet, fast SD, audio and seven USB connectors, so it is specced out at the top end, although we would have preferred more USB-C ports than USB-A.
OWC Thunderbolt Hub – Best budget Thunderbolt 4 hub
One upstream Thunderbolt 4 port (40Gbps, 60W) Three Thunderbolt 4 ports (40Gbps, 15W) One USB-A port (10Gbps, 7.5W) 110W power supply
The OWC Thunderbolt Hub delivers with an upstream Thunderbolt 4 port, three downstream Thunderbolt 4 ports, and an extra USB-A port thrown in for good measure.
The price is the lowest we’ve seen for one of these latest Thunderbolt 4 or USB4 hubs.
All four Thunderbolt 4 are rated at 40Gbps bandwidth and 15W charging, and one USB-A 3.2 Gen.2 (10Gbps and 7.5W) port. The TB4 ports can be used for adding SSDs and other USB-C, TB3 or TB4 devices or external displays, depending on your needs.
It has a 110W power supply, which is all you should need for the number of ports on offer, and it can charge a laptop at up to 60W.
OWC Thunderbolt Go Dock – Best full-size portable Thunderbolt 4 dock
- 11 fast ports
- 120W built-in power supply
- Upstream port at side
- 2.5Gb Ethernet
- One upstream Thunderbolt 4 port (40Gbps, 90W)
- Two downstream Thunderbolt 4 ports (40Gbps, 15W)
- HDMI 2.1 video port
- Two USB-A ports (10Gbps, 10W)
- One USB-A port (480MBps, 7.5W)
- One USB-C port (10Gbps, 15W)
- 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet
- UHS-II SD and microSD card readers (320MBps)
- 3.5mm combo audio jack (front)
- 120W power supply
A Thunderbolt hub supplies as many Thunderbolt ports as the connection technology allows, but only a full docking station comes with dedicated video ports, wired Internet access, card readers and more USB ports—although the Calldigit Thunderbolt Element Hub packs four TB4 and four fast USB-A ports. With the right adapters and a decent power connection, that might be all you need.
The “Go” in OWC’s Thunderbolt Go Dock signifies that this fully equipped dock is more portable than other docking stations, as it doesn’t require a cumbersome external power brick to be carried with it. Instead, it has its own 120W power supply built into its case.
This does make it reasonably hefty but still much easier to travel with, and is perfect for laptop professionals often on the move and working on location.
It’s range of ports is impressive, including super-speedy 2.5Gb Ethernet.
Anker 568 USB-C Docking Station – Best USB4 dock for charging and displays
- Supports three external 4K displays
- Two 10Gbps USB-C ports with 30W
- 180W power supply
- No downstream 40Gbps ports
- No card reader
- No audio port
- Not for Macs
- One upstream USB4 port (40Gbps, 100W)
- HDMI 2.0 video port (4K at 60Hz)
- Two DisplayPort 1.4 video ports (8K at 30Hz)
- Two USB-C ports (10Gbps, 30W)
- Two USB-A ports (5Gbps)
- Two USB-A ports (480MBps)
- Gigabit Ethernet
- 180W power supply
This 11-port USB4 dock is compatible with Thunderbolt computers, and is built for multiple-display solutions rather than Thunderbolt expansion as it has three video ports (two DisplayPort 1.4 ports, and a single HDMI 2.0 video port) but no downstream 40Gbps ports.
Either of the DisplayPort connections supports 8K resolutions at 30Hz. You’re probably considering this dock for a 4K display, however, and you can connect two 4K displays at 60Hz resolution to any two of the dock’s video ports. You can even connect a 4K display to each of the three ports, though only less comfortable 30Hz refresh rates are available under that scenario.
There are two front-mounted USB-C ports but at 10Gbps rather than 40Gbps. Each can power a connected device at up to 30W, enough for a large tablet and any phone. With its 180W power supply, this dock can power a laptop at 100W and two 30W devices using all its Type-C connectors.
We like the side-mounting of the upstream USB4 port, compared to some docks that insist on the upstream port being messily positioned at the front.
This is not the dock for you if you are using a Mac or want the fastest downstream data connections, but it works well for multiple displays and accessible 10GBps 30W USB-C ports.
Anker PowerExpand 5-in-1 Thunderbolt 4 Mini Dock – Best Thunderbolt 4 Hub for laptop charging
- Four Thunderbolt 4 ports
- 85W laptop charging
- 10Gbps USB-A port
- Power button
One upstream Thunderbolt 4 port (40Gbps, 85W) Three downstream Thunderbolt 4 ports (40Gbps, 15W) One USB-A port (10Gbps) 100W power supply
The Anker PowerExpand 5-in-1 Thunderbolt 4 Mini Dock is similar to the other Thunderbolt 4 hubs but calls itself a “mini dock”, which is fine as all the hubs can act as docks if you have the right adapters for Ethernet and external displays.
It beats most similar Thunderbolt 4 hubs with its 85W laptop-charging power (compared to 60W elsewhere). That said, its total 100W external power supply feels a little light given the potential 67.5W power drain if all the ports required charging simultaneously.
Plugable USB4 and Thunderbolt 4 Hub (USB4-HUB3A) – Slimmest TB4 hub
- Four Thunderbolt 4 ports
- 10Gbps USB-A port
- USB-C-to-HDMI adapter included
- 60W laptop charging could be light for larger laptops
- No device charging on the USB-A port
- Low overall 100W power supply
One upstream Thunderbolt 4 port (40Gbps, 60W) Three Thunderbolt 4 ports (40Gbps, 15W) One USB-A port (10Gbps) 100W power supply
Plugable’s USB4-HUB3A calls itself a USB4 hub but, as the branding on the front suggests, is also a fully certified Thunderbolt 4 hub that is competitively priced and boasts a fast USB-A port as well as the one upstream and three downstream Thunderbolt 4 ports. in that respect, it is a better solution than the company’s more expensive TBT4-HUB3C, reviewed later on.
It costs around the same as the OWC Thunderbolt Hub, reviewed above, and matches that hub on ports, with the only difference being that the OWC’s 10Gbps USB-A port can charge a device at 7.5W, while Plugable’s USB-A port is equally fast but doesn’t offer device charging. For that, OWC’s hub wins our best budget recommendation.
The USB4-HUB3A is still a fine Thunderbolt 4 hub, though, and is one of our favorites tested here. It’s noticeably slimmer than the OWC so if portability is high on your list of requirements, then this might appeal to you—although like the others it comes with a fairly hefty power supply.
Belkin Pro Thunderbolt 4 Dock
- Just one downstream TB4 port
- Macs can’t use both HDMI ports
- Low-charge USB-A ports
One upstream Thunderbolt 4 port (40Gbps, 90W) One downstream Thunderbolt 4 port (40Gbps, 15W) Two HDMI 2.0 video ports (4K at 60Hz) Two USB-A ports (10Gbps, 4.5W) Two USB-A ports (480MBps, 2.5W) One USB-C port (10Gbps, 18W) Gigabit Ethernet UHS-II SD card reader (320MBps) 3.5mm combo audio jack (front) 120W power supply
The Belkin Pro Thunderbolt 4 Dock is a gorgeous-looking but pricey laptop docking station, boasting 12 ports including two HDMI for Windows users to quickly add up to three external displays. Mac users, however, should stay away.
It sullies its Pro title, however, with a couple of the ports being rather average, and the power supply could do with being higher, but it is otherwise well equipped.
Belkin has included two HDMI ports as most users want to connect a couple of external displays to get past the limitations of their laptop screen space. However, that means that there is just one downstream Thunderbolt 4 port. If you want more flexibility, look for a dock with less dedicated display connections and more TB4 ports.
Windows users can add up to three displays, using the two HDMI and one Thunderbolt 4 port. The TB4 port can attach directly to a USB-C monitor or you can buy a USB-C adapter to connect to a DisplayPort or HDMI display. One 8K display can run at 30Hz, or you can have two 4K at 60Hz. Video resolution for up to three displays is dependent on your laptop’s capabilities.
The lack of port flexibility is worse for Mac users, as they can’t use both HDMI due to the way Macs handle video.
Anker Apex Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station – Best Thunderbolt 4 dock for HDMI displays
One upstream Thunderbolt 4 port (40Gbps, 90W) One downstream Thunderbolt 4 port (40Gbps, 15W) One USB-C port (10Gbps, 20W) Two USB-A ports (10Gbps, 4.5W) Two USB-A ports (480MBps, 4.5W) Two HDMI 2.0 ports (4K at 60Hz) Gigabit Ethernet UHS-II SD Card reader (320MBps) 3.5mm audio jack 120W power supply
The Anker Apex Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station is a great choice if you need to connect more than one external display to a Windows laptop—less so for Mac users.
Other Thunderbolt 4 docks we’ve tested rely solely on the TB4 ports for display connections. This means that if you want two external screens, you lose two of the three downstream TB4 ports, plus you will need HDMI or DisplayPort adapters unless the displays have a USB-C connection.
Anker’s inclusion of two HDMI ports means you don’t need any adapters to connect displays. There’s just one downstream TB4 port, but that’s all you’d have left if you connected two displays to one of the other docks or hubs.
There’s a snag for Mac users, however. They can use only one of the HDMI ports, so having two on the dock rather than another TB4 port is just a waste of space. Windows users can use both, and, indeed, the spare TB4 port to connect up to three displays.
If you aren’t planning on adding two screens, this dock is less flexible than other hubs and docks where the TB4 ports can be used for display or whatever else you desire.
The sole downstream TB4 port can also be used to connect an external monitor, so it’s possible for owners of Thunderbolt 4 Windows laptops to have as many as three displays running out of the dock: two HDMI and one TB4. Mac owners will need to add third-party DisplayLink software to achieve three displays.
If you need to power devices via the USB-A ports, look for a dock with superior charging specs as these ports are really for data only, and even then two of them are slow USB 2.0.
An extra mark for adding a power button on the front so that your laptop isn’t receiving a potential charge when it’s not needed, and keeping the dock’s temperature down at night.
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Anker chargers are up to 45% off for a post-Christmas sale — stock up and save!
Get ready to juice up all your shiny new devices (and your not-so-shiny ones too): Amazon just marked down a treasure trove of Anker chargers at its after-Christmas sale. While this might not sound super-exciting at first, it’s an opportunity to make your everyday existence smoother and easier — and that’s the kind of thing we get really happy about later.
Anker chargers are great to have around the house, in your purse or in a suitcase — and today’s sale almost feel like highway robbery.
Anker USB C Outlet Extender
Never fight over outlet space again! This brick has three AC outlets, two USB-A ports and one USB-C port — plenty of room for tablets, phones, and whatever else needs a bit of juice.
It charges your devices 1.5 times as fast as an average charger, plus it has plenty of safety measures in place, including short circuit and overcurrent protection, fire resistance and more.
This little power cube is so versatile, shared one happy shopper. You can plug so many things in at once. It’s so good, I got one for my wife too. And it looks so cool!
Anker Foldable 3-in-1 Wireless Charging Station with Adapter
Have an Apple Watch or Airpods? This charger can juice up all three simultaneously, without the messy wires.
This charger folds up for travel, plus it’s totally adjustable — you can even use the phone charger as a stand.
I know you might be like, ‘Do I really wanna bring a whole a setup with me everywhere?’ and the answer is YES. DO IT, shared an enthusiastic shopper. You pack one charger and you’ll never forget any. Plus a weird added bonus is that since you just plug it in and set it up, you don’t lose track of where you put your charger as easily as you would with a cord.
Anker USB C Power Strip
Say goodbye to desk clutter and hello to plenty of ports, fast charging, and even a warranty up to 25,000 for any connected devices.
Anker includes a nifty little feature called ActiveShield that monitors your devices and automatically shuts off power to any connected devices to protect against overheating. Plus, you get six different ports all in one device.
I’m using this for international travel with a single outlet adapter. Although the device says only 110v, their website and customer service says that it’s good for 220v as well but for regulatory purposes, the writing on the adapter doesn’t include this, said one grateful traveler. I have used it daily in Europe and the Middle East for over a month with 220v power and have had no problems at all. Please note, this doesn’t change any input/output voltage, whatever you plug in will come out so make sure your devices are also 110-220v.
Anker USB C Charger 40W
This powerhouse charger can put out 40W of power — enough to bring a MacBook Air at normal speeds, to charge your iPhone and iPad at the same time, and much more.
This charger is compatible with a wide range of different products and devices and allows simultaneous charging of your phone, computer, tablet, and more.
One happy customer called this the perfect brick, adding that the best solution for me was this charger. I travel a lot and this allows me to charge my devices faster two at a time without carrying two p bricks. Would buy again.
Anker 733 Power Bank
This handy unit is not only a 65W wall charger but also a 10,000mAh portable charger. It can charge up to three devices at once and uses Anker’s patented technology for more efficient and secure power.
This power bank has two USB-C ports and a single USB-A port, but the true utility lies in its versatility. It’s both a wall charger and a power bank in one, and it’s small enough that you can take it most anywhere without it hogging the space in your bag.
I normally have three devices to charge while traveling: phone, watch and headphones, one five-star customer explained. Many other chargers only have three ports, so adding a battery means changing ports around at night — this charges the battery and all three devices at once and it’s quick when you’re topping off a phone during the day through USB-C. It can also stand in for my laptop charge when needed!
Anker 737 Power Bank
Big genie, little bottle. This charger can output 140W of power or charge itself quickly, depending on what you need. It also has an easy-to-read display to see exactly how much time is needed to charge your devices.
This power bank includes a 24,000mAh battery capacity. What’s that mean? Basically, it’s enough juice to fully recharge an iPhone about five times before it needs a recharge itself.
This is the best power bank I’ve owned. It isn’t the largest. But between having support up 100 watt PD charging to having a very useful and detailed display this power bank is by far the best I’ve owned either from Anker or other companies, one happy buyer said. The battery health, discharge and recharge rates are great features to have. I’m waiting to see what else in this series Anker might add but they hit a home run with this one.
Anker USB C Charger
This powerful charger can fast-charge a MacBook Pro from zero to full in just 1.5 hours. That’s with 140W of power output, plus a 24-month warranty.
The Anker 717 can take the place of your MacBook charger. In fact, it can replace it entirely, because it is worlds better. The fast-charging capability alone makes it worth investing in.
One customer said, This charger is amazing, it’s slighter than the Apple option and works great with both USB-C and MagSafe charging on my MacBook Pro. Anker is always my go-to!
Anker USB C Hub
This USB hub not only lets you connect a huge number of devices but also allows for HDMI video output at 4K resolution. Sweet.
This USB hub includes power passthrough, so you can connect a 65W charger to power any connected devices. It also includes an HDMI port, Ethernet port, USB-C port and two USB-A ports.
One customer said this is perfect for laptop connectivity. My new MacBook Pro for work did not have the connectors I needed for my USB devices, extra monitors, or ethernet. Purchased Anker products in the past, so picked up a couple different adapters to try out. This one works great and has all the connections I need. Ethernet has been steady and strong. USB devices work as expected, and external monitor works exactly as if it was plugged directly in. Great value for money. No complaints so far!
Anker Portable Charger
This is a speedy charger that only needs 3.5 hours to fully power the bank, which is about twice as fast as most chargers.
The Anker Portable Charger can handle almost five full recharges of an iPhone thanks to its 24,000mAh capacity. It also supports charging two devices simultaneously.
Very impressed with this power bank. A great buy. I love it, one five-star customer said.
Anker USB C Charger
With this USB-C charger, you can power two laptops at once or up to four other devices. If you want an all-in-one charging station, this is the way to go.
In addition to the powerful charging this device offers, it also reduces energy usage and can help reduce your power bill year over year.
Anker USB-C 735 Charger
This charger can power three devices with equal power distribution, or it can power up to a 13-inch MacBook Air. It’s a versatile, foldable charger that’s great for business trips.
This is the best power brick ever, said a thrilled customer. Way smaller than a standard laptop charger, but it charges my Dell Latitude work laptop at full speed — none of those “slow charger” pop-up warnings from the computer. It’s perfect for travel because I can charge my tablet, phone, and Smart watch at the same time. It’s also super handy if you only have a few minutes at an airport to sit down and charge, because it’s fast. I originally bought this for my Steam Deck and have had zero issues or slow charger notifications, so it’s been great on that front as well.
Anker 621 Magnetic Battery (MagGo)
Not only is this a handy little charger, but it connects to your phone through magnets. You can keep it connected and still use your phone, though it might just a bit wider.
I’ve been eyeballing this one to have in my travel bag for a while now but didn’t like the idea of a stand (I’d never use it). The fact this one is strictly the battery was an instant purchase! Charged fast (both in and to the phone). Does what it says! one customer said.
Anker Docking Station
This Thunderbolt charger has a high price tag, but it more than makes up for it with its 8K support, multiple ports, and ability to work with both Windows and Mac computers (within certain constraints).
Works great with my new Dell XPS 15 (9510), two external monitors, and wireless keyboard and mouse. It has all the ports I need and I’ve had no issues. I use my original power cord to charge my laptop, though. My Dell has two USB-C ports so this plugs into one and my power cord into the other. I liked the set up so much that I purchased a second one to completely duplicate my set up in both my home and work offices, said a five-star reviewer who bought two.
The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.
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