I Scream, You Scream! “Ports, Where are the Ports?” So, which is it going to be? Lighter and thinner, with no room for ports, or a bit heavier and thicker, and more built-in ports? Personally, I like the idea of not needing adapters, but hey, I’m probably a Luddite. Still, most new laptops never have enough ports, and many newer drives, like the USB drives listed above, have single ports, so don’t permit daisy-chaining. What to to? Docks are the answer! In this review we look at two portable docks, the OWC USB-C Travel Dock and the EZQuest USB-C Multimedia Hub Adapter.
Two sweet docks for portable use are the OWC USB-C Travel Dock and the EZQuest USB-C Multimedia Hub Adapter 8 Ports with Power Delivery 3.0. As you might reasonably imagine, both are docks, which mean they plug into your computer's Type-C port, and distribute the signal to a variety of outputs. Both are beautifully designed and finished, and made of aluminum for durability. They are different devices, but share many features.
OWC USB-C TRAVEL DOCK
Five essential ports, up to 100W pass-through power, and one cable.
(2) USB-A 3.1 Gen 1
(1) SD card
(1) USB-C power pass through Power options: bus powered or use existing USB-C power adapter – Charge while working: up to 100W pass-through power for a notebook or other devices.
1) OWC Dock Ejector software. This nifty bit of code allows you to disconnect from all attached devices with one click. We found that this prevented errors where we thought we had unmounted all devices, only to learn that wasn’t true. So, a nice addition to using a dock.
EZQuest USB-C Multimedia Hub Adapter 8 Ports with Power Delivery 3.0
(2) 5Gbs USB 3.0 ports with one BC 1.2 capable
(1) 5Gbs USB 3.0 port with BC 1.2 capable
(1) High speed Gigabit Ethernet network connection with LED indicator
(1) SDHC card reader
(1) Micro SDHC card reader
(1) 4K HDMI at 30Hz – Mirror your MacBook display to your HDMI display in up to 1080p at 30Hz or UHD (3840×2160) at 30Hz
USB PD 3.0 Fast Role Swap helps to prevent data loss and keeps the secondary monitor on if the USB-C power cable is disconnected from the hub while your notebook display is open. USB-C Power Delivery version 3.0 with pass-thru charging up to 100 watts and 5Gbs for data.
So, now that you’ve seen the options, which dock is right for you? It depends, first of all, on your needs. To be honest, both are great products. As for the difference between the number of ports, it’s not as big a difference as you might imagine. For example, the OWC dock has a single SD card reader. Not really a problem, since you can always use the SD Micro SD card adapter that is included with most memory card packages, so an effective and popular work around. Both docks take advantage of current power handing protocols. Plug your charger into the dock, and you can charge your computer at the same time. Both have the all important Gigabit Ethernet port, both have a 4K HDMI output for external displays or projectors, and both are easily portable. The OWC unit is slightly smaller than the EZQuest unit, although you lose an extra USB port, so you give a little, you take a little. We recommend without reservation, both the OWC USB-C Travel Dock, and the EZQuest USB-C Multimedia Hub as wonderful gifts for the road warrior in your life.
Harris Fogel with editorial assistance from Nancy Burlan, Frank Schramm, and Ken Kramar, posted 12/9/2021
For more information on the EZQuest USB-C Multimedia Hub visit: https://ezq.com/usb-c-multimedia-hub-adapter-8-ports.html
For more information on the OWC USB-C Travel Dock visit: https://www.owcdigital.com/products/usb-c-travel-dock