Thunderbolt 4

Get up to $100 off connectivity-boosting Thunderbolt docks

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OWC Thunderbolt Go Dock
OWC's Thunderbolt Go Dock is a mobile powerhouse.
Photo: OWC

Known for docks, hubs and other Mac-friendly accessories, OWC has put together a big sale on Amazon. You can get up to $100 off Thunderbolt docks!

We’re focusing on Thunderbolt docks that can help you broaden your computer setup’s connectivity. But you can also find external hard drives, memory kits, keyboards, cables and more in the sale.

X-rays show crazy complexity of Apple’s Thunderbolt 4 cable

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X-rays reveal the differences between high-quality Thunderbolt and USB-C cables versus cheaper options.
X-rays reveal the differences between high-quality Thunderbolt and USB-C cables versus cheaper options.
Photo: Lumafield

Thunderbolt cables cost far more than standard USB-C ones, and a series of X-ray scans of various options reveals why. The virtual teardown shows that the Apple Thunderbolt 4 (USB‑C) Pro cable has far more features than one might expect for such a simple accessory. Cheaper ones are as bare-bones as could be expected.

The scans are both beautiful and informative.

OWC’s new high-speed Thunderbolt dock takes 11 useful ports on the road [Review] ★★★★

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OWC Thunderbolt Go Dock review★★★★
OWC's latest dock includes Thunderbolt 4 ports plus USB-A, HDMI and more.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

The OWC Thunderbolt Go Dock was designed to be taken on trips, which is unusual for a hub that uses this extremely fast connection standard. While portable, it still has room for eleven ports in a range useful types, including Thunderbolt 4 (of course), USB-A, HDMI, USB-C and more.

I put the dock through a series of real-world tests to see how well it performs.

Take Thunderbolt speed on the road with new Hyper hub

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Sanho HyperDrive Thunderbolt 4 Power Hub review: You can never have too many high-speed data ports, and the HyperDrive Thunderbolt 4 Power Hub adds three more to your Mac or iPad Pro.
You can never have too many high-speed data ports, and the HyperDrive Thunderbolt 4 Power Hub adds three more to your Mac or iPad Pro.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

The most important feature of the new Hyper Thunderbolt 4 Power Hub is something it doesn’t have: a giant power brick. The three-port hub offers 40Gbps data transfers as its rivals do, but in a more compact form.

The device was unveiled in summer 2022 and went through crowdfunding but is only now available for all to buy.

Trio of new Kensington docks pack in the ports

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Kensington SD5780T Thunderbolt 4 Dual 4K Docking Station
Add very high-speed ports to your Mac with Kensington's latest Thunderbolt 4 dock.
Photo: Kensington

Kensington used CES 2023 to take the wraps off a Thunderbolt 4 docking station that adds eleven ports to Mac or PC.

The accessory-maker also announced at the trade show a smaller, portable USB4 hub with six ports, plus a portable USB-C hub with six ports and a built-in wireless charger.

Kensington’s new 11-port dock offers Macs super-fast Thunderbolt 4 connections

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Kensington's new 11-port dock offers Macs super-fast Thunderbolt 4 connections
Connect a wide array of accessories to a Mac with the Kensington SD5780T Thunderbolt 4 dock.
Photo: Kensington

The Kensington SD5780T is a desktop dock that connects to a Mac over Thunderbolt 4 at up to 40 Gbps. And it includes almost a dozen ports of various types to enable to everything from a mouse to a high-speed external drive.

The dock can also fast charge a MacBook.

Developer’s M1 MacBook Pro rig is all there in black and white [Setups]

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The M1 MacBook Pro is hidden in a drawer.
The M1 MacBook Pro is hidden in a drawer.
Photo: alexandersandberg@Reddit.com

Some computer setups go for splashy color while others like to be monochromatic — often black and white, or one or the other. In today’s featured setup, an iOS and macOS software developer sets a Studio Display in a black-and-white scheme that hides an M1 MacBook Pro.

And they go for quality sound in the mix, too, with one of the world’s most popular USB microphones and an exceptional pair of open-back headphones.

HP debuts first monitor with ‘IPS Black’ contrast and Thunderbolt 4

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HP's new display, coming soon, offers IPS Black contrast and speedy Thunderbolt 4 connections.
HP's new display, coming soon, offers IPS Black contrast and speedy Thunderbolt 4 connections.
Photo: HP

HP rolled out a new 4K monitor at its Amplify Executive Forum Thursday, calling it “the world’s first IPS Black display with Thunderbolt 4 technology.”

The HP Z32k G3 4K USB-C Display, “coming soon” at an unspecified price, should appeal to creators and product developers, the company said.

That’s because it will offer strong color accuracy and high contrast in addition to the speed and versatility of Thunderbolt 4 connectivity.

Why $159 isn’t a totally crazy price for Apple’s 3-meter Thunderbolt 4 cable

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Apple’s 3-meter Thunderbolt 4 cable
Apple now offers almost 10-feet of high-speed Thunderbolt 4 connectivity.
Photo: Apple

A 3-meter version of the Apple’s Thunderbolt 4 cable can now be ordered. The extra-long cable connects Macs to peripherals at up to 40Gbps and 100W of power.

It’s $159, or two or three times the cost of a high-quality 2-meter Thunderbolt 4 cable from rival companies. Trouble is, the 3-meter cable doesn’t have any direct competition.

Apple just can’t resist BS like its $129 Thunderbolt cable

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Apple just can’t resist BS like its $129 Thunderbolt cable. This Apple cord costs about twice what it ought to. But there are good alternatives at reasonable prices.
This Apple cord costs about twice what it ought to. But there are good alternatives at reasonable prices.
Image: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

The Apple Tax is real. Apple really does overcharge for some of its products. Nowhere is that clearer than with Apple’s 1.8-meter Thunderbolt 4 cable that costs double what it should.

But you don’t have to pay the tax. Not for high-quality cables, anyway. I tested 2-meter Thunderbolt cables from OWC and Plugable to show they do the job for a lot less money.

Belkin’s Thunderbolt hub packs a whopping 12 ports

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Belkin’s Thunderbolt hub packs a whopping 12 ports
The Belkin Connect Pro Thunderbolt 4 Dock can be the center of your home office.
Photo: Belkin

With a dozen ports, the Belkin Connect Pro Thunderbolt 4 Dock lets users connect a Mac to multiple accessories for data, video, Ethernet and power. All through a single high-speed cable connection.

Belkin also introduced a Thunderbolt 4 cable capable of handling data transfers at 40 Gbps.

Connect your Mac to 3 monitors with Plugable’s new dock

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Connect your Mac to 3 monitors with Plugable’s new dock
The Plugable UD-6950PDZ Docking Station lets you connect a Mac to up to three monitors.
Photo: Plugable

Plugable used CES 2022 to unveil a dock that can handle up to three 4K external monitors using either HDMI or DisplayPort. The UD-6950PDZ also has ports for Ethernet, USB-A, audio and more.

In addition, Plugable also announced the USB4-HUB3A, a small hub with three Thunderbolt ports and more.

HyperDrive Turntable Dock for iMac will get your head spinning

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HyperDrive Turntable Dock for iMac will have your head spinning
Take your iMac for a spin with the HyperDrive Turntable Dock
Photo: Hyper

The HyperDrive Turntable Dock for iMac includes a 360-degree swivel mechanism that makes turning the computer a breeze. Plus, it has room for an SSD and 10 useful ports.

Hyper also unveiled on Monday the HyperDrive Thunderbolt 4 Power Hub, which combines a docking station and 100W computer charger.

Both are nominated for CES Innovation Awards.

New Satechi Mac dock adds multiple Thunderbolt and USB-A ports, plus more

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New Satechi Mac dock adds multiple Thunderbolt and USB-A ports, plus more
The Satechi Thunderbolt 4 Dock adds almost a dozen ports. And it enables high-speed data transfers over most of them.
Photo: Satechi

Satechi’s just-launched Thunderbolt 4 Dock includes a whopping eleven ports, including three Thunderbolt 4 and four USB-A ports. And there’s also a range of other ports for connecting additional peripherals.

Plus, Satechi launched a pair of USB-C hubs on Wednesday.

Accell’s new Thunderbolt 4 dock offers high-speed data transfers, plenty of ports

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Accell’s new Thunderbolt 4 dock offers high-speed data transfers, plenty of ports
The Accell Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station is ready for professional workloads.
Photo: Accell

The Accell Thunderbolt 4 Docking Station allows multiple peripheral connections to Mac through a single Thunderbolt 4 cable. It turns a single Thunderbolt port into two, while also offering DisplayPort, USB-A, Ethernet and more.

The professional-grade hub is available for purchase starting Monday.

Alogic’s new Thunderbolt 4 docks deliver max speed and connections

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Unlock the potential of your MacBook Pro with a blazing-fast Thunderbolt 4 dock.
Unlock the potential of your MacBook Pro with a blazing-fast Thunderbolt 4 dock.
Image: Alogic

This post on USB-C docks is brought to you by Alogic.

Not all USB-C hubs and docks are created equal. While all Type-C ports look virtually identical, the fact is that some are faster and more capable than others. If you want the best possible throughput, you need to seek out ones that support the latest standards — Thunderbolt 4/USB 4.

Buying the right USB-C dock or hub will let you get the most out of living the “one cable for everything” dream. And it will future-proof your setup (at least as much as is possible in the fast-paced computing world).

Brydge’s new Stone Pro Thunderbolt 4 hub expands your connectivity

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The new Brydge Stone Pro TB4 Docking Station has 12 ports.
The new Brydge Stone Pro TB4 Docking Station has 12 ports.
Photo: Brydge

Brydge has unveiled what looks to be a formidable, 12-port Thunderbolt 4 hub to expand your laptop’s connectivity. It’s the Stone Pro TB4 docking station. The only catch is you can’t get it just yet.

You may know Brydge more for its iPad keyboards than its docking stations. Recently Cult of Mac‘s Ed Hardy said the Brydge 12.9+ iPad Pro keyboard beats out Apple Magic Keyboard. But the new Stone Pro TB4 is one of several docks the company makes.