Best docking stations for Dell XPS laptops
The best docking stations to give your Dell XPS laptop or Ultrabook some extra ports
Best Thunderbolt 4 docking station
Best thunderbolt 4 connectivity, most versatile docking station, best premium docking station.
Best overall design
- Best for 4K monitors
Best charging station
Best port variety.
Best for multiple displays
Why trust Laptop Mag
1. The list in brief 2. Best overall 3. Best Thunderbolt 4 4. Best connectivity 5. Most versatile 6. Best premium pick 7. Best overall design 8. Best for 4K monitors 9. Best charging station 10. Best port variety 11. Best for multiple displays 12. Most compact 13. Why trust Laptop Mag
The best docking stations for Dell XPS laptops complement some of the best laptops on the market today — which often suffer from limited port selection. Thankfully, the best docking stations can resolve this issue (and then some), unleashing the true potential of your XPS laptop while keeping your workspace neat and tidy to boot.
No matter which flavor of XPS you're using, paltry port selection is a headache for anyone with legacy peripherals in need of a USB Type-A connection. However, throw a docking station into the mix and you'll be elated as you gain all of the functionality you need while truly making the most of your device.
If you're a MacBook owner facing a similar struggle, check out our rundown of the best docking stations for MacBooks . Looking for a port expansion solution that's more travel-friendly, compact, and a little easier on the pocketbook? Check out our selection of the best USB-C hubs . However, if you're a Dell XPS owner who's in a peripheral predicament, read on for our selection of the best docking stations for Dell XPS laptops.
The Quick List
CalDigit's docking station is an incredible companion to any laptop thanks to 18 ports, a guaranteed 98W of host device charge, and lightning-like 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet connectivity.
Read more below
Best Thunderbolt 4
If you’re after a versatile dock with a focus on Thunderbolt 4 connections, the Satechi Thunderbolt 4 Dock won’t disappoint.
Thunderbolt 4 connectivity is here to stay, and the SD5700T makes for a fantastic portable companion that will future-proof your setup for years to come.
Anker's Thunderbolt 4 ports are convenient and speedy, while this 12-in-1 hub’s other ports allow you to charge and connect plenty of PC accessories and monitors.
Best premium pick
The Corsair TBT100 Thunderbolt 3 Dock can accommodate a lot of different equipment. Its premium design screams office-ready, but it’ll look just as good manning a gaming station.
The new Plugable USB-C Triple 4K Docking Station is better than ever before with extra HDMI and DisplayPort inputs, a 100W Power Delivery (PD) boost, an essential SD Card Reader, and an extra USB-C port with 20W PD and up to 10Gbps transfer rates.
Load the next docking stations
Best for 4K
Look no further than Dell's very own D6000 universal dock for your Dell XPS, which has a built-in adapter to easily switch between the standards, so you can connect it to just about any monitor (and most importantly a Dell XPS laptop).
For those who require a hub with more than enough USB-A ports to charge multiple accessories at once, all while transferring files between different devices, the Plugable 7-in-1 USB Charging Hub is a great choice.
With a whopping 15 ports, including five USB-A 3.1, two USB-C 3.1, two Thunderbolt 3 ports, and virtually every other port you’d need for your Dell XPS, the TS3 Plus Thunderbolt 3 Dock is a beast.
This display-friendly docking station comes with a mix of noteworthy USB-A 3.2 and USB-C 3.2 ports to connect all the peripherals any laptop user would need and charge other devices such as a smartphone or tablet.
The unassuming design easily blends into any work or personal setup, and its port placement allows for a relatively clean, wire-tidy desk.
Best docking station overall
1. caldigit thunderbolt station 4.
Our expert review:
Reasons to buy, reasons to avoid.
The CalDigit Thunderbolt Station 4 is a do-it-all device that can turn just about any USB-C laptop into a fully-fledged workstation with a plethora of ports. However, connect it to your Thunderbolt 4 enabled XPS laptop and you now have lightning fast access to external storage, extended displays, and phenomenal power delivery.
It costs a pretty penny – that much can't be argued, however CalDigit's docking station is an incredible companion to any workstation, offering a guaranteed 98W of host device charge, 18 additional ports (of which many include Power Delivery), and a lightning-like 2.5 Gigabit Ethernet port. All that before we even touch upon the dock’s support for multiple external monitors at 4K (60Hz) or a single external monitor at 8K (60Hz).
CalDigit's offering is one of the finest Thunderbolt 4 options available, and it rightfully tops our list of the best Dell XPS docking stations.
Read our full CalDigit Thunderbolt Station 4 review .
2. Satechi Thunderbolt 4 Dock
If you’re after a versatile dock with a focus on Thunderbolt 4 connections, then the Satechi Thunderbolt 4 Dock won’t disappoint. Its unassuming design easily blends into any work or personal setup, and its port placement allows for a relatively clean, wire-tidy desk. Sure, it’s a bit late to the game, but that doesn’t make it any less powerful. Connecting to two 4K displays while having your laptop charge with 96W Power Delivery, having multiple PC peripherals ready to use without taking up laptop ports, and recharging your smartphone or tablet on the fly makes for a versatile setup, and this Thunderbolt 4 Dock gives you access to that. See our full Satechi Thunderbolt 4 Dock review
3. Kensington SD5700T Thunderbolt 4 Dock
The Kensington SD5700T Thunderbolt 4 Dock is made for ultrabooks like the Dell XPS 13 9310. Not only does it vastly expand the number of ports and slots on one of the best laptops on the market, but it gives it the 90W power for charging and additional perks the notebook requires.
No docking station is perfect, but the SD5700T dock does a stellar job of turning a laptop into a desktop powerhouse. Thunderbolt 4 connectivity is here to stay, and the SD5700T makes for a fantastic portable companion that will future-proof your setup for years to come.
See our full Kensington SD5700T Thunderbolt 4 docking station review
4. Anker Apex Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station
Is the Anker Apex Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station too ahead of the curve? Yes, but it’s also a versatile hub that can improve your current work setup while helping you prepare for the next generation of laptops set to become the norm. Its Thunderbolt 4 ports are convenient and speedy, while the 12-in-1 hub’s other ports allow you to charge and connect plenty of PC accessories and monitors. Anker’s dock is let down by an expensive $300 price point for a device that can’t be fully utilized without a Thunderbolt 4-supported laptop. However, give this suitcase imposter some time and it’s sure to shine. See our full Anker Apex Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station review
5. Corsair TBT100 Thunderbolt 3 Dock
The Corsair TBT100 Thunderbolt 3 Dock can accommodate a lot of different equipment. Its premium design screams office-ready, but it’ll look just as good manning a gaming station. Plus, it’s got a plethora of ports just waiting to connect to several monitors, a couple of headsets, and a laptop.
However, at $259, the TBT100 has a steep entry price which might give many home office workers and gamers pause. But if you can look past the cost, the Corsair TBT100 Thunderbolt 3 Dock is an essential piece of tech. See our full Corsair TBT100 Thunderbolt 3 Dock review
Best overall docking station design
6. plugable usb-c triple 4k display docking station.
Plugable’s last USB-C Triple 4K Docking Station was a hit, so much so that stock has completely run out. With its latest UD-ULTC4K docking station, I can imagine it being a hot commodity thanks to its fair price and nifty upgrades. Now with a host of upgrades to turn any USB-C supported laptop into a powerhouse, the new Plugable USB-C Triple 4K Docking Station is better than ever before with extra HDMI and DisplayPort inputs, a 100W Power Delivery (PD) boost, an essential SD Card Reader, and an extra USB-C port with 20W PD and up to 10Gbps transfer rates. Oh, and four USB-A 3.0 ports for good measure. Plugable listened to customer demands and greatly expanded the capabilities of its most popular docking station, and the result is the most well-rounded docking station I’ve reviewed. See our full Plugable USB-C Triple 4K Display Docking Station review
Best docking station for 4K monitors
7. dell d6000 universal dock.
Look no further than Dell's very own D6000 universal dock for a Dell XPS, which has a built-in adapter to easily switch between the standards, so you can connect it to just about any laptop (most importantly a Dell XPS laptop). It can go up to 5K on a single screen or handle up to three 4K screens over USB Type-C. Better yet, it has four USB-A ports that are more than enough for USB-A devices such as a mouse, keyboard, or USB stick. See our full Dell D6000 Universal Dock review
8. Plugable 7-in-1 USB Charging Hub
Plugable’s 7-in-1 USB Charging Hub (USBC-HUB7BC) acts as a fantastic docking station to free up ports on your laptop and adds even more PC peripherals such as keyboards and mice. It also acts as a standalone charging hub to juice up devices such as your smartphone . It stands out for bringing dual functionality to each of its seven ports, an enviable feature a majority of USB-C hubs and other docking stations don’t completely provide. For those who require a hub with more than enough USB-A ports to charge multiple accessories at once, all while transferring files between different devices, the Plugable 7-in-1 USB Charging Hub is a great choice.
See our full Plugable 7-in-1 USB Charging Hub review .
9. CalDigit TS3 Plus Thunderbolt 3 Dock
With a whopping 15 ports, including five USB-A 3.1, two USB-C 3.1, two Thunderbolt 3 ports, and virtually every other port you’d need for your Dell XPS, the TS3 Plus Thunderbolt 3 Dock is a beast. While its design is on the bulky side and there is no HDMI output, its plentiful selection of ports more than make up for that. It also delivers 87W power delivery, which will sufficiently power all devices connected to it.
Best docking station for multiple displays
10. targus usb-c universal quad 4k docking station.
The Targus USB-C Universal Quad 4K Docking Station, also known as the Four Head 4K Dock, doesn’t just offer the standard two or three video outputs to transform your laptop into a multi-screen setup, but eight different ports. With four DisplayPort 1.2 on top of another four HDMI 2.0 outputs, the docking station can support a single 5K and four 4K displays — plus your laptop screen. Targus’ screen hoarder also comes with a mix of noteworthy USB-A 3.2 and USB-C 3.2 ports to connect all the peripherals any laptop user would need and charge other devices such as a smartphone or tablet. Oh, and there’s a 3.5mm audio jack and Ethernet slot for good measure. What it doesn’t offer is the latest generation of connectivity, Thunderbolt 4 , along with a worthwhile price tag. Regardless, if you’re after maximum screen real estate, Targus’s docking station delivers the plots of visual land. See our full Targus USB-C Universal Quad 4K Docking Station review
Most compact USB-C docking station
11. targus usb-c dual hdmi 4k docking station.
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Best laptop docking stations for Dell XPS 13 in 2023
Transform Dell's 13-inch Ultrabooks into a workstation with these docks.
Both the Dell XPS 13 and Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 are remarkably flexible laptops. They'll perform excellently since they have top-of-the-line specs and killer displays, but if you want to use them with a monitor like a desktop PC, you'll want to get yourself a laptop dock. These docks give you the additional ports you might need, as well as more options for connecting your laptop to monitors. Here are some of the best laptop docking stations for the Dell XPS 13 and Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 that money can buy.
The CalDigit TS4 is an absolute beast of a laptop dock that offers 98W host charging for your laptop, as well as support for dual 6K 60Hz displays and an incredible 18 ports. These include four Thunderbolt 4 slots, plenty of USB-A, dual 3.5mm audio, Ethernet, SD card readers, and more. It's pricey, but it's also the most impressive dock available by a wide margin.
The Kensington SD5700T features 10 ports, including four USB-A and three Thunderbolt 4 slots. Ports for Ethernet, an SD card reader, and a 3.5mm audio jack are included as well. The dock also features 90W charging and supports a single 8K display or dual 4K ones. It even comes with Kensington's beloved lock slot for maximum security, too.
Small and powerful
If CalDigit's TS4 dock is too big for you, check the CalDigit Element Hub out. With four Thunderbolt 4 ports, four USB-A ones, support for up to an 8K display or dual 4K ones, and 60W charging, this compact dock brings the heat.
For triple-monitor setups
Dell's D6000 dock offers support for three 4K displays simultaneously, making it one of the few docks that supports a triple-monitor setup well. It also has four USB-A ports and one USB-C one, which is plenty for most people.
This docking station offers the power for dual 4K monitors and has six USB 3.0 ports, all while being slim and compact, making it a great option. It's also not terribly expensive, making it a good value choice.
The StarTech Mini Dock packs a single USB 3.0 port and the ability to connect to dual 4K monitors in the palm of your hand. All this makes it an outstanding choice in terms of size-to-capability performance.
Tall and slim
Plugable's vertical dock makes the most out of a razor-thin design by offering support for two HD displays and two USB 3.0 ports. If you want a solid dock that takes up vertical space instead of desk space, this is the one for you.
Essentially a flute-shaped stand, this nifty dock gives you two USB 3.0 ports and lets you connect to a single HD display. If you want something basic, minimal, and incredibly compact, this will be right up your alley.
Folks looking for an affordable dock with great value should check out the Plugable UD-3900H. It supports a single 1440p display or dual 1080p HD monitors, and it also comes with six USB-A ports. The dock is nice and small, too, so it won't take up much space.
If we had to choose ...
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All of these different laptop docks are great, and one of them is bound to offer whatever you're looking for in a dock to go with your Dell XPS 13 or Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 . However, if we had to choose, we would go with the CalDigit TS4, as even though it's expensive, its offerings are unmatched by any other dock on the market. Between its support for dual 6K 60Hz displays, its 98W host charging capabilities, and its 18 ports, it's simply the most impressive laptop dock available today.
If you're looking for something that can support a triple-monitor setup, you should go with the Dell D6000 dock. Not only does it work with up to three 4K displays at 60Hz, but it also comes with four USB-A ports and a single USB-C one, too.
People looking for something on the smaller side size-wise, though, should go with the j5create Ultra Station. At its low price, its miniscule form factor, dual USB-A ports, and ability to connect to an HD monitor make it an absolute steal. The CalDigit Element Hub, StarTech Mini Dock, and Plugable UD-3900H are great compact options, too.
For more awesome options, check out our roundup of the best laptop docking stations as well as the best Thunderbolt 4 docks .
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The best docking stations for laptops in 2023
Plug in everything your command center demands..
Chances are your new laptop has fewer ports than you’d like. For years, companies have been prioritizing thinness and lightness to the detriment of connectivity options. Docking stations give you back some of that versatility — and then some — by combining monitor, Ethernet, USB and other ports into one package. Unlike simple USB hubs, docking stations tend to have more slots and usually incorporate a DC power supply, making them bigger and far less portable than small hubs. But that also means they can be the connective matrix of sorts that powers your home office setup. Ultimately, which dock works best for you depends on what you need to connect, but it’s safe to say the vast sea of choices out there can be overwhelming. We tested out 12 options from brands we trust to see which are worth your money.
Satechi Dual Dock Stand
Best for macbook, kensington ad2010t4 thunderbolt 4 docking station, best thunderbolt 4 dock, caldigit ts4 thunderbolt 4 dock, best premium dock, kensington sd4780p thunderbolt docking station, best for chromebooks, what to look for in a docking station.
First and foremost, consider what you need to plug in. This will likely be the deciding factor when you go to actually buy a docking station. Do you need three screens for an expanded work view? A quick way to upload photos from an SD card? Are you looking to plug in a webcam, mic and streaming light, while simultaneously taking advantage of faster Ethernet connections? Once you’ve settled on the type of ports you need, you may also want to consider the generation of those ports as well; even ports with the same shape can have different capabilities. Here’s a brief overview of the connectivity different docking stations offer.
External monitors typically need one of three ports to connect to a PC: HDMI, DisplayPort or USB-C. HDMI connections are more common than DisplayPort and the cables and devices that use them are sometimes more affordable. The most popular version of the DisplayPort interface (v1.4) can handle higher resolutions and refresh rates than the most common HDMI version (2.0). All of the docking stations with HDMI sockets that we recommend here use version 2.0, which can handle 4K resolution at 60Hz or 1080p up to 240Hz. The DisplayPort-enabled docks support either version 1.2, which allows for 4K resolution at 60Hz, or version 1.4, which can handle 8K at 60Hz or 4K at 120Hz.
You can also use your dock’s downstream (non-host) Thunderbolt ports to hook up your monitors. If your external display has a USB-C socket, you can connect directly. If you have an HDMI or DisplayPort-only monitor, you can use an adapter or a conversion cable that has one of each type of connector.
Of course, the number of monitors you can connect and the resolutions/rates they’ll achieve depend on both your computer’s GPU and your monitors — and the more monitors you plug in can bring down those numbers as well. Be sure to also use cables that support the bandwidth you’re hoping for. MacOS users should keep in mind that the MacBook Air with the standard M1 chip supports just one external monitor. M2 MacBooks (the newer Airs and 13-inch Pro) can handle two external monitors, but each monitor needs its own onboard port (i.e., a dock plugged into a single port can’t power two monitors). M2 Pro and M2 Max Macs can run multiple displays from a single port.
Most docking stations offer a few USB Type-A ports, which are great for peripherals like wired mice and keyboards, bus-powered ring lights and flash drives. For faster data transfer speeds to your flash drive, go for USB-A sockets labeled 3.1 or 3.2 — or better yet, use a USB-C Thunderbolt port.
Type-C USB ports come in many different flavors. The Thunderbolt 3, 4 and USB4 protocols are newer, more capable specifications that support power delivery of up to 100W, multiple 4K displays and data transfer speeds of up to 40Gbps. Other USB-C ports come in a range of versions, with some supporting video, data and power and some only able to manage data and power. Transfer rates and wattages can vary from port to port, but most docks list the wattage or GB/s on either the dock itself or on the product page. And again, achieving the fastest speeds will depend on factors like the cables you use and the devices you’re transferring data to.
Nearly every dock available today connects to a computer via USB-C, often Thunderbolt, and those host ports are nearly always labeled with a laptop icon. They also allow power delivery to your laptop: available wattage varies, but most docks are rated between 85 and 100 watts. That should be enough to keep most computers powered — and it also means you won’t have to take up an extra laptop connector for charging.
None of our currently recommended laptops include an Ethernet jack; a docking station is a great way to get that connection back. We all know objectively that wired internet is faster than Wi-Fi, but it might take running a basic speed comparison test to really get it on a gut level. For reference, on Wi-Fi I get about a 45 megabit-per-second download speed. Over Ethernet, it’s 925 Mbps. If you pay for a high-speed plan, but only ever connect wirelessly, you’re probably leaving a lot of bandwidth on the table. Every docking station I tested includes an Ethernet port, and it could be the connector you end up getting the most use out of.
Just two of our favorite laptops have SD card readers, and if you need a quick way to upload files from cameras or audio recorders, you may want to get a dock with one of those slots. Of the docks we tested, about half had SD readers. For now, most (but not all) laptops still include a 3.5mm audio jack, but if you prefer wired headphones and want a more accessible place to plug them in, many docking stations will provide.
When you’re counting up the ports for your new dock, remember that most companies include the host port (the one that connects to your computer) in the total number. So if you’re looking for a dock with three Thunderbolt connections, be sure to check whether one of them will be used to plug in your laptop.
Most docking stations have either a lay-flat or upright design. Most docks put the more “permanent” connections in back — such as Ethernet, DC power, monitor connections and a few USBs. Up-front USB ports can be used for flash drive transfers, or even plugging in your phone for a charge (just make sure the port can deliver the power you need). USBs in the rear are best for keyboards, mice, webcams and other things you’re likely to always use. Some docks position the host port up front, which might make it easier to plug in your laptop when you return to your desk, but a host port in back may look neater overall.
How we tested
We started out by looking at online reviews, spec sheets from various brands and docking stations that our fellow tech sites have covered. We considered brands we’ve tested before and have liked, and weeded out anything that didn’t have what we consider a modern suite of connections (such as a dock with no downstream USB-C ports). We narrowed it down to 12 contenders and I tested each dock on an M1 MacBook Pro, a Dell XPS 13 Plus and an Acer Chromebook Spin 514 . I plugged in and evaluated the quality of the connections for 12 different peripherals including a 4K and an HD monitor, a 4K and an HD webcam, plus USB devices like a mouse, keyboard, streaming light and mic. I plugged in wired earbuds, and transferred data to a USB-C flash drive and an external SSD. I ran basic speed tests on the Ethernet connections as well as the file transfers. I judged how easy the docks were to use as well as the various design factors I described earlier. I made spreadsheets and had enough wires snaking around my work area that my cat stayed off my desk for three weeks (a new record).
Best for MacBook: Satechi Dual Dock Stand
The Satechi Dual Dock Stand sits neatly beneath a MacBook and allows for dual monitors, even for non-Pro M2 MacBooks.
- Unique design complements MacBooks
- Can power two monitors on M2 Macs
- Good variety of ports
- Just two USB-A ports
- No Thunderbolt ports
The Satechi Dual Dock Stand is different from all the other docks we tested in two respects: it doesn’t require a power source and it goes beneath your MacBook instead of beside it. You could almost classify it as a hub, but I think the high number of ports earns it docking-station status. It also gets around the single-monitor limitation some Macs present by plugging into two USB-C ports at once. That means if you have a MacBook with a standard M2 chip (the 13-inch MacBook Pro or either size MacBook Air), you’ll be able to plug two external monitors into the back of the dock and enjoy an extended view, instead of just a mirrored third display.
Since the Dual Dock works without power, it’s a lot easier to set up than other docks with transformer boxes and DC cables. I found it made the most sense to just use the MagSafe connector on the laptop, but you can also supply power to the dock using the non-data USB-C port and it will pass 75 watts to your machine.
Both the 4K and HD monitors I tested looked great and worked well in extended mode. There are two USB-Cs for a webcam and mic, plus two USB-As which could be used for a dongle mouse and a streaming light — that’s likely enough ports for conferencing or even a basic video creator setup. The dock is ultimately limited by the fact that none of the USB-C connections are Thunderbolt and there are only two USB-A sockets to work with. But it’s a great choice for extending productivity in a way that tucks beneath a MacBook, neatly moving the cords to the back of the machine and out of the way.
Satechi Dual Dock Stand specs
Host connection: 2 x USB-C
Power delivery to host: 75W (USB-C)
USB-C: 1 x USB 3.0, 1 x 3.1
Monitor: 2 x HDMI 2.0, 1 x DisplayPort 1.4
Aux 3.5mm: No
SD Card: No
Best Thunderbolt 4 dock: Kensington AD2010T4
The AD2010T4 had the best combination of ports, speed and design among the Thunderbolt 4 docks we tried.
- Competitively priced
- Powerful downstream TB4 port
- Plenty of USB-A connections
- Most ports are up front
- Lay-flat design can be a space hog without a mount
For those who want the extra speed and connectivity of the latest Thunderbolt interface, I recommend Kensington’s AD2010T4 Thunderbolt 4 Dual 4K Docking Station . Of all the TB4 docking stations tested, the AD2010 is the only one under $300, yet it performed on par with and even offered a better selection of ports than some of the others I tested. It gives you two Thunderbolt 4 connections, one for the host and one for accessories, plus an additional 3.2 USB-C. Dual HDMI 2.0 sockets can handle two external screens with up to 4K resolution (at 60Hz). But if you need three additional monitors or have an 8K screen, you can tap into the Thunderbolt port.
There’s a total of four USB-As, which is enough for a wired mouse or keyboard and a couple other peripherals. It has an SD and a microSD card slot, a 3.5mm audio combo jack and an Ethernet jack. There are even two Kensington lock slots that let you physically secure your dock with a cable.
The device itself has a solid feel and an attractive metal design. My only gripe is with the lay-flat orientation and that nearly half of the ports are on the front edge — I think upright docks that keep most connections around back have an overall neater look on a desk. However, I should point out that Kensington sells mounts for its docks, which could help with aesthetics.
Kensington AD2010T4 specs
Host connection: Thunderbolt 4
Max power delivery to host: 96W (DC)
USB-C: 1 x TB4, 1 x 3.2
Monitor: 2 x HDMI 2.0
Aux 3.5mm: Yes
SD Card: SD and microSD
Best premium dock: CalDigit TS4
CalDigit's TS4 is a Thunderbolt 4 dock with plenty of ports, including five total USB-C ports and a practical, upright design.
- An abundance of ports
- Compact, upright design
- 2.5Gbps Ethernet port
There’s a lot to appreciate about CalDigit’s TS4 docking station: It has a sturdy, upright design with a host connection at the rear and a whopping five downstream USB-C ports, two of which are Thunderbolt 4. Up front, you get an SD and a microSD card slot along with a headphone jack, two USB-C and a USB-A connector. In back, there’s room for four more USB-A devices and two 3.5mm jacks, one for audio in and one for audio out. One area where the dock may feel lacking is in display inputs. It only has one DisplayPort 1.4, but it has plenty of TB4 ports, which you can easily use to outfit a full command center (if you don’t have a USB-C monitor, there are plenty of adapters ).
The multi-gig Ethernet jack can handle up to 2.5Gbps, so if you’re paying for a screaming-fast internet plan, this dock can help you take advantage of it. The TS4 can deliver up to 98W of power to your laptop, though like any docking station, the wattage goes down when other items are also drawing power.
The TS4 worked equally well with my MacBook Pro and the Dell XPS13 Plus and was even compatible with a Chromebook. I tested read/write speeds on a Samsung T7 SSD via a Thunderbolt port and got 734 MB/s read and 655 MB/s write speeds on the Mac and 1048/994 on the Dell. Compared to the other docks, that was in the lower-middle range for the Mac and the fastest overall for the PC. On PC, it also handled a 1GB folder transfer to a flash drive faster than any other dock and delivered the fastest connection speeds over the Ethernet. It’s the only unit that let me plug in every single peripheral I had on hand at once. If you’ve got lots of tech you want to use simultaneously (and money isn’t a concern), this is the one to get.
Power delivery to host: 98W (DC)
USB-C: 2 x TB4, 3 x 3.2
Monitor: 1 x DisplayPort 1.4
Aux 3.5mm: 1 x audio combo, 1 x audio in, 1 x audio out
Best for Chromebooks: Kensington SD4780P
Current-model Chromebooks should already have the required driver installed, making this a reliable, plug and play dock for Chromebooks.
- Works well with Chromebooks
- Five USB-A ports
- Requires a driver for non Chromebooks
- Just one downstream USB-C
The Kensington SD4780P Dual 4K typically requires a DisplayLink driver , but any Chromebook made after 2017 supports the connection from the jump. Finding a docking station that works with ChromeOS is tough; of the 12 units I tested, only four connected at all with the Acer Chromebook Spin 514, and one of those four couldn’t run two monitors. The SD4780P uses a USB-C host connection, through which it offers a maximum power delivery of 100W and was able to run both the 4K and HD screens cleanly.
It allows for a wide range of USB-A peripherals through five such ports, but there’s only a single downstream USB-C, so I wasn’t able to use both a webcam and mic at the same time. That means you’ll need to use your Chromebook’s built-in ports if you want more than one of those types of devices set up. The plastic build makes it look a little cheap and I’m not crazy about the lay-flat design, but the host port is in the back, which will make your setup neater. If all you’re looking for is a way to get a few extra monitors and use your wired USB accessories, this is a good pick for Chromebooks.
Kensington SD4780P specs
Host connection: USB-C
Power delivery to host: 100W (DC)
USB-C: 1 x 3.1
Monitor: 2 x HDMI 2.0, 2 x DisplayPort 1.2
Aux 3.5mm: 1 x audio combo
Other docking stations we tested
When I pulled the Plugable TBT4-UDZ Thunderbolt 4 out of the box, I was convinced it would make the cut: It has a practical upright design, an attractive metal finish, and the host connection is TB4. While there are plenty of USB-A and monitor ports, there’s just one downstream USB-C. A modern dock, particularly one that costs $300, should let you run, say, a USB-C cam and mic at the same time. Otherwise, it’s pretty limiting.
Anker 575 USB-C
At $250 (and more often $235), the Anker 575 USB-C could make for a good budget pick for Windows. It performed well with the Dell XPS 13 Plus, but had trouble with the third screen, the 4K webcam and headphone jack when connected to the MacBook Pro. It’s quite compact, which means it can get wobbly when a bunch of cables are plugged in, but it has a good selection of ports and was able to handle my basic setup well.
Belkin Connect Pro Thunderbolt 4
Belkin’s Connect Pro Thunderbolt 4 Dock is a contender for a Thunderbolt 4 alternative. It has nearly the same ports as the AD2010 (minus the microSD slot) and an attractive rounded design — but it’s $90 more, so I’d only recommend getting it if you find it on sale.
Acer USB Type-C Dock
Acer’s USB Type-C Dock D501 costs $10 more than our Kensington pick for Chromebooks, but it performs similarly and is worth a mention. It has nearly the same ports (including the rather limiting single downstream USB-C) but both the Ethernet and data transfer speeds were faster.
Are docking stations worth it?
Docking stations are worth it if you have more accessories to plug in than your laptop permits. Say you have a USB-C camera and mic, plus a USB-A mouse, keyboard and streaming light; very few modern laptops have enough connections to support all of that at once. A docking station can make that setup feasible while also giving you extra ports like an Ethernet connection, and supplying power to your laptop. However, if you just need a few extra USB sockets, you might be better off going with a hub, as those tend to be cheaper.
How much does a laptop dock cost?
Laptop docks range in price from around $150 to $450. Higher priced units tend to have more ports and more powerful connections, such as Thunderbolt 4.
Does a laptop charge on a docking station?
Nearly all docking stations allow you to charge your laptop through the host connection (the cable running from the dock to your computer). That capability, plus the higher number of ports is what separates a docking station from a hub. Docks can pass on between 65W and 100W of power to laptops, and nearly all include a DC adapter.
Are all docking stations compatible with all laptops?
No, not all docking stations are compatible with every laptop. In our tests, the Chromebook had the biggest compatibility issues, the Dell PC had the least, and the MacBook fell somewhere in between. All docks will list which brands and models they work with on the online product page — be sure to also check the generation of your laptop as some docks can’t support certain chips.
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Dell Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station, With 180W Power Delivery, 4K-60 Hz Quad Display Resolution, HDMI 2.0, Displayport 1.4, USB-C, USB-A, Gigabit Ethernet LAN Port, Black | WD22TB4
- Warranty: 1 Year Effortless warranty claims with global coverage; shipping costs are on us*. Learn more
- Condition: New
- Deliver To Moscow Change Delivered by Nov 22 If you order within 21 Hours, 35 Minutes
Description for Dell Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station, With 180W Power Delivery, 4K-60 Hz Quad Display Resolution, HDMI 2.0, Displayport 1.4, USB-C, USB-A, Gigabit Ethernet LAN Port, Black | WD22TB4
Expresscharge technology you'll experience power delivery of up to 180w on dell devices with expresscharge technology that enables: 80% charge in one hour 35% charge in just 20 minutes future-made design.
- Swappable module lets you upgrade with ease to meet the needs of your IT environment.
- Upgrade to get the latest in connectivity with not one but two Thunderbolt™ 4 ports for even more flexibility.
Intelligent and simple management.
Industry standard compatibility
6-8 Days Delivery in Russia We offer express delivery to Russia, Moscow, Sant Petersburg for Dell Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station, With 180W Power Delivery, 4K-60 Hz Quad Display Resolution, HDMI 2.0, Displayport 1.4, USB-C, USB-A, Gigabit Ethernet LAN Port, Black | WD22TB4. Best Price Guarantee We offer the best price for Dell Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station, With 180W Power Delivery, 4K-60 Hz Quad Display Resolution, HDMI 2.0, Displayport 1.4, USB-C, USB-A, Gigabit Ethernet LAN Port, Black | WD22TB4 in Russia, Moscow, Saint Petersburg. Buy now with the best price!
Specifications for Dell Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station, With 180W Power Delivery, 4K-60 Hz Quad Display Resolution, HDMI 2.0, Displayport 1.4, USB-C, USB-A, Gigabit Ethernet LAN Port, Black | WD22TB4
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- 6.00 cm x 30.00 cm x 29.01 cm
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Crashed, harassed, and shot down: It's been a rough year for the MQ-9 Reaper, America's workhorse combat drone
- It's been a tough year for US military's MQ-9 Reaper workhorse combat and surveillance drone.
- The aircraft has been crashed into, harassed, and shot down by US adversaries around the world.
- Most of these incidents have drawn public frustration and condemnation from American officials.
It's been an annoying year for the US military's go-to drone for combat and reconnaissance: the MQ-9 Reaper. Over the course of the year, America's adversaries have run into and crashed, harassed, and now — as of this week — shot down the aircraft.
In 2023, in hot spots in Europe and the Middle East, the Reaper drone has been used to carry out high-level strikes and collect valuable intelligence for the US military. The drone — which can be well-armed with missiles and precision bombs — is capable of operating at high altitudes for up to 24 hours and carries a price tag of around $30 million.
The US Air Force says "given its significant loiter time, wide-range sensors, multi-mode communications suite, and precision weapons, it provides a unique capability to perform strike, coordination, and reconnaissance against high-value, fleeting, and time-sensitive targets." An effective platform for strike and surveillance, the unmanned aircraft is widely used, often in areas where rivals and adversaries may opt to mess with it knowing that doing so is less likely to start a fight than actions against a manned asset.
The Reaper's troubles this year began in mid-March, when a Russian Su-27 fighter jet, after repeatedly harassing it, clipped the propeller of an MQ-9 while it was operating in international airspace above the Black Sea. The US military said the collision forced it to crash the drone into international waters below, worsening the already strained relations between Washington and Moscow over the latter's war in Ukraine.
July saw several different instances where Russian fighter jets harassed the American drones while they were operating above Syria, engaging in behaviors such as dropping parachute flares, engaging afterburners , and flying in close proximity to the US military aircraft. In one case, a Russian Su-35 jet dropped flares on a drone and broke its propeller as it was carrying out a counterterrorism mission against the Islamic State. That aircraft, however, survived the encounter.
US officials voiced frustration in all of these cases, slamming Russia and its pilots for performing what they say are irresponsible, reckless, and unsafe actions.
"The Russian fighter's blatant disregard for flight safety detracts from our mission to ensure the enduring defeat of ISIS. We call upon the Russian forces in Syria to put an immediate end to this reckless, unprovoked, and unprofessional behavior," Lt. Gen. Alex Grynkewich, the commander of US Air Forces Central Command, known as AFCENT, said after Moscow's pilot broke the propeller of the Reaper in late July.
In the most recent troubling incident involving an MQ-9, Houthi rebels on Wednesday shot down a Reaper drone off the coast of Yemen, a US official told Insider following claims from the militant group . The Iran-backed group claimed that it used an unspecified air-defense system to take down the aircraft, which was reportedly flying through international airspace and over international waters.
It's not the first time the Houthis have shot down an American MQ-9. The militants fired a surface-to-air missile at one of the drones in June 2019, US Central Command (CENTCOM) said at the time. Several days later, they attempted to shoot down another Reaper, but the surface-to-air missile missed wildly by one kilometer.
The Wednesday incident reflects Houthi aggression amid the month-long Israel-Hamas war, during which the militants have fired multiple drones and missiles toward Israel. To counter these threats, the country deployed its high-profile Arrow air-defense system, dispatched fighter jets, and retasked missile ships. A US Navy destroyer in the area shot down several Houthi missiles and drones believed to be headed toward Israel last month.
Throughout the conflict between Israel and Hamas, the US military has maintained a significant force presence nearby, with carrier strike groups in the Mediterranean and now the Middle East and additional combat aircraft on station in the area.
Since the war began, the Reaper has been conducting surveillance flights in the region. The Pentagon confirmed unarmed drones have flown over Gaza to assist in the recovery efforts of the hostages who were abducted by Hamas during its October 7 terror attacks in southern Israel, attacks which killed at least 1,400 people and injured many more, igniting a conflict that has led to further bloodshed in Gaza and heightened tensions in the wider region.