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Belkin Professional Thunderbolt Four Dock evaluation



Belkin’s Professional Thunderbolt Four Dock provides 12 helpful ports to your laptop computer and appears beautiful.

A docking station helps you to create a busy desktop setup with only a single USB-C or Thunderbolt connection between your laptop computer and the dock.

Join just about what you prefer to the dock: from exterior shows to quick SSD drives, printer, webcam, reminiscence sticks and playing cards, keyboard and mouse. Escape weak Wi-Fi with a wired Ethernet Web connection on the dock that ought to super-power your connectivity.

Thunderbolt 4 (TB4) works with the most recent Thunderbolt Four and USB4 computer systems and can also be backwards appropriate with Thunderbolt 3 (TB3) and USB-C. Even when your laptop computer doesn’t have TB4, it’s a smart funding to purchase a dock with the most recent connectivity tech.

It really works with computer systems which have a video-enabled USB-C or Thunderbolt port, Home windows 10 RS3 or newer, MacOS (Large Sur Model 11) or newer, and iPadOS (Sort-C iPads solely).

Specs and options

We’ve seen docking stations with extra ports, however the Belkin TB4 dock boasts a formidable 12, together with two show connections.

• One upstream Thunderbolt Four port (40Gbps, 90W)

• One downstream Thunderbolt Four port (40Gbps, 15W)

• Two HDMI 2.Zero 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 (entrance)

• 120W energy provide

Belkin has included two HDMI ports as most customers wish to join a few exterior shows to get previous the constraints of their laptop computer display screen area.

Having the built-in video ports saves you having to purchase a USB-C adapter.

Home windows customers can add as much as three shows, utilizing the 2 HDMI and one Thunderbolt Four port. The TB4 port can connect on to a USB-C monitor or you should buy a USB-C adapter to connect with a DisplayPort or HDMI show.

One 8K show can run at 30Hz, or you possibly can have two 4K at 60Hz. Video decision for as much as three shows relies in your laptop computer’s capabilities.  

Thunderbolt Four can embrace as much as 4 TB4 ports, however Belkin’s dock comes with simply two: one upstream to the pc and one downstream to gadgets.

That’s a compromise for having the 2 HDMI ports. If you would like extra flexibility, search for a dock with much less devoted show connections and extra TB4 ports.

The shortage of port flexibility is worse for Mac customers, as they’ll’t use each HDMI because of the approach Macs deal with video.

Mac customers can join two exterior shows however solely utilizing one of many HDMI and the spare TB4 port. They can not use each HDMI ports.

That leaves one redundant HDMI port and no spare TB4 ports for quick 40Gbps machine connections, though the USB-C port does run at 10Gbps.

That’s why we don’t suggest the Belkin Professional Thunderbolt Four Dock for Macs. It’s not Belkin’s fault, it’s an Apple factor, however there are many different docks that don’t depart ports empty.

Whereas 4 USB-A ports is loads, two are fairly puny, being USB 2.Zero that has a weedy 480MBps bandwidth—it’s an odd alternative when most docks have a 5Gbps minimal. In the event you name a product “Professional” it shouldn’t skimp on its capabilities. 

The opposite two, nonetheless, are fairly racy at 10Gbps.

Not one of the USB-A ports affords a lot in the best way of machine charging, maxing out at 4.5W however the USB-C port can cost at a formidable 18W.

The upstream TB4 port can provide as much as 90W, which ought to be sufficient for even a big laptop computer.

Total energy, although, is kind of low at 120W, which could clarify the weakly charging USB-A ports.

The SD card reader is quick, however you’ll want an adapter for those who use microSD playing cards. Reminiscence playing cards aren’t only for digicam fans. You should buy a high quality 512GB card for round $60/£50, they usually provide a reasonable and transportable approach of upping the storage in your laptop computer.

Design

House Grey with a shiny black back and front, the Professional Thunderbolt Four Dock is a magnificence.

One private niggle is the upstream TB4 port being positioned on the entrance, so there’s at all times a cable protruding and spoiling the dock’s in any other case beautiful appears.

Belkin isn’t alone on this follow however hats off to rival Caldigit that hides the laptop computer connection behind its docks alongside the ability enter and Gigabit Ethernet.

In Belkin’s favor, it does make plugging out and in that little bit faster and simpler.

The dock comes with a 0.8m (2.8ft) Thunderbolt Four cable. In the event you want extras, try our roundup of one of the best Thunderbolt Four cables.

Value

The Belkin Professional Thunderbolt Four Dock prices $399.99 or £399.99.

This places it on the high-end of the value vary for Thunderbolt Four docks. The much less flashy Caldigit TS4 has extra (and higher) ports at a decrease value. If two HDMI ports is a should then the Anker 777 Apex Thunderbolt Four Dock has the identical port lineup at a extra inexpensive worth.

See our roundup of all one of the best Thunderbolt Four docks and hubs.

Verdict

The Belkin Professional Thunderbolt Four Dock is a gorgeous-looking however dear laptop computer docking station, boasting 12 ports together with two HDMI for Home windows customers to shortly add as much as three exterior shows. Mac customers, nonetheless, ought to keep away.

It sullies its Professional title, nonetheless, with a few the ports being fairly common, and the ability provide may do with being increased, however it’s in any other case nicely geared up.

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