The ATEN USB-C Multiport Dock with 60W power pass-through is a great dock for those with USB-C devices (MacBook, iPad, Windows, Android and Chrome) that want something semi-permanent that sits under your laptop on the desk.
It won’t break the bank either. The ATEN USB-C Multiport Dock is $199 – about half the cost of a Thunderbolt dock, so if your needs are a little less demanding then this is what you want.
Le’ts put the ATEN USB-C Multiport Dock through its paces.
USB-C (in on rear) with PD 2.0 5,9,12,20/3A 60W
power passthrough – it is only used for charging
USB-C host connector (OUT on left side) to
laptop supports Alt DP mode 1.2 – cable is short!
1 x USB-A 3.1 Gen 1 (5Gbps) port with 5V/1.5A
(7.5W) BC 1.2 (more
here) but fine for iPhone charging and more)
2 x USB-A 3.1 Gen 1 (5Gbps) with 5V/.5A rating
(total power draw on 3 USB-A not to exceed 5V/2A 10W) – more for mouse/keyboard
Micro SD or SD slot up to 128GB
3.5mm combo audio
Power supply – Pass, but it is really only 45W passthrough
It draws 5V/3A (15W) from your passthrough power source – if
any less it may affect functionality. It appears not to work with Qualcomm QC chargers
unless they also support PD 2.0.
But while it will passthrough 60W, in reality, it only provides
a maximum of 45W to the computer so you may need to power the laptop independently
if it needs more.
Sorry – we were not game to test with an 80W USB-C charger
in case it or the charger blew up!
Build – Exceed
Aluminium – it is solid. 280 x 750 x 145mm x 320g. It sits under the back of a laptop and has non-slip feet to keep it in place. And the 5° angle is just perfect.
Dual monitors – Pass at 30Hz
First Mac does not support Dual Monitor MST (Multi-Stream Transport), so dual monitors are for Windows only – a shame as it’s a perfect Mac companion.
It supports 2 x 1080p@60Hz via DisplayPort,
HDMI or VGA. It is plug and go as Windows supports this.
Single monitors – Pass
We tested 1 x 4K@30Hz or less. It supports 1920×1080@60Hz.
You can push it to 2560 x 1080 at 60Hz, but it depends on the monitor and cable
iPad – Failable
It supports one external monitor and one
keyboard. Caveat – the typical 12W charger USB-A to Lightning charger must be
at least 30W to work correctly. It appears to support USB-A devices like flash
drives. Support is dependent on iPadOS.
Chromebook – Pass
It is fully functional for Intel-based
Chromebooks but again test before you commit.
Android – Failable
Depending on your smartphone or tablet, this may accept one external
HDMI monitor, keyboard and USB devices supported by Android. Test first.
We tested with late-model Samsung Galaxy S10, Note10 and Tab
S6 but these are optimised for DeX and did not work.
Port speeds – Pass
Given that port, one is a USB-C 3.1 Gen 1 is 5Gbps full-duplex
we did not notice any speed reduction in using external USB-A SATA 6 (6Gbps half-duplex)
or USB-C devices.
We also gained a full gigabit Ethernet connection.
GadgetGuy’s take – ATEN USB-C Multiport Dock does what is says
It is perfect for most 13” Windows laptops (dual screen support)
or 13” MacBooks (single screen support) as a relatively lower-cost way to add
lots of ports. And you can use it with Thunderbolt 3 devices as well.
It is more reliable than a cheap dongle – better quality build
for starters, but the fact that it is a desktop device means less pulling
cables in and out.
Remember this is not a Thunderbolt 3 device like ATEN’s UH7230 Multiport 85W dock but that costs $359 and needs Thunderbolt 3 to function.
We are rating it as a USB-C dock for single/dual screen operation in a desktop format it does everything it promises.