The best USB-C hubs

Satechi
  • If you have a laptop with only one or two USB-C ports, you need a USB-C hub with lots of ports to expand your connectivity options.
  • The Satechi Aluminium Multi-Port Adaptor V2 is our top pick because it has all the ports you need to make your laptop more versatile.

If you have a laptop that only has only one or two USB-C ports – whether it’s a Mac, PC, or Chromebook, as well as newer iPad Pros and even select Android smartphones – a USB Type-C hub or dock is a great way to add more ports.

Before you purchase a USB-C hub, you’ll want to consider exactly how many more ports you need and what kind of ports you’ll use most. For example, you might simply want more USB-A ports. Or, you might want a combination of an HDMI port, SD card reader, Ethernet port, USB-A ports, and USB-C port with power pass-through (to charge a laptop).

You’ll also want to think about the size and style of the hub since it will be plugged into your laptop quite often. The more ports a USB-C hub offers, the more expensive it will be, but whichever you choose, make sure it has the ports you need and that it works seamlessly with your computer.

Here are the best USB-C hubs you can buy:


The best USB-C hub overall

Satechi

The Satechi Aluminium Multi-Port Adaptor V2 (A$159.95) is well-designed, supports pass-through charging, and has a large variety of ports.

If you’re looking for a versatile USB-C hub and want one of the best out there, then the Satechi Aluminium Multi-Port Adaptor V2 is the way to go. It may be a little bulky, but the trade-off is that it features a ton of ports.

You’ll get three USB-A 3.0 ports, as well as one HDMI port, one USB-C port, and one Ethernet port. You’ll also get an SD card slot and a microSD card slot, so those of you who are looking for something to easily transfer data from your camera or phone will appreciate this hub. The HDMI port supports 4K monitors and the Gigabit Ethernet port can handle speeds of 10/100/1000Mbps.

For those with only a single USB-C port on their laptop, this hub supports pass-through charging, so you can plug your computer’s charger into the hub’s USB-C port to charge your computer. It may not charge quite as quick as it does when you plug the charger directly into your computer, but rest assured that you can still charge your laptop with this hub.

We tested it out on a MacBook Pro so we could transfer photos from an SD card and it worked like a charm. However, it won’t support SD card speeds faster than UHS-I.

The downsides are that it’s a little pricey and it only has one USB-C port, so if you’re looking for additional USB-C ports specifically, this may not be the way to go (although there aren’t many USB-C-only hubs to recommend at this time).

Pros: Lots of ports, variety of port, nice design

Cons: Only one USB-C port

Grab from Catch of the Day for A$159.95 here.


The best budget USB-C hub

Amazon

The HooToo 6-in-1 USB-C adaptor is a great way to add more ports and a card reader to your computer at an inexpensive price (A$55.95).

Not everyone wants to spend a ton of cash on a USB hub for their computer. That, however, is where the HooToo USB-C Adaptor hub comes in. It increases the number of ports on your laptop without a super high price tag.

The hub has three USB-A 3.0 ports, is lightweight, and works natively with Macs and PCs. In addition, there is one SD card reader, one HDMI port that supports 4K monitors, and a USB-C port for power up to 100 watts, which is pretty remarkable considering the price.

HooToo upgraded this hub with heat-reduction tech to prevent overheating, while the use of copper wiring and other metals helps to create more efficient data transfers, according to the company.

Another option to consider is this 5-in-1 adaptor from Anker, which provides three USB-A ports, an HDMI port, and an Ethernet jack. You don’t get a card reader, but it’s ideal for those who need Ethernet connectivity. This is the device that’s used by most Business Insider staffers.

Pros: Three USB ports, card reader, HDMI port, inexpensive, lightweight and pocket-friendly design

Cons: USB ports on both sides of hub would have been nice, no Ethernet port

Grab from Amazon for A$55.95 here.


The best with cable management

OWC

The OWC USB-C Travel Dock (A$95.40) is a portable hub with a cable that tucks away neatly and a USB-C port that delivers up to 100 watts of power.

The problem with living in the dongle life is, well, the dongle that sticks out like a sore thumb. Other World Computing’s second-generation USB-C Travel Dock neatly tucks beneath the device.

The OWC USB-C Travel Dock gives you two standard USB 3.1 Type-A ports, an HDMI port to connect to an external monitor or projector, and an SD Card reader. There’s also a USB-C port that delivers power up to 100 watts, which means you can charge a laptop or tablet that the dock is connected to; it can also charge laptops faster than other hubs with power pass-through, thanks to the higher wattage. The square-block design sits neatly on any desk, making it suitable as a desktop companion as well as for travel. It’s an improvement over the first-generation model, which doesn’t have the cable storage system and its USB-C port’s power passthrough supports only up to 60 watts.

As the name suggests, it’s designed for portability primarily, although most of our recommendations allow for that. We have been testing it for several months and found it to be well-made and its performance to be solid. Power is delivered consistently to a MacBook Pro, and it has no problems connecting to a 32-inch external display. It tucks nicely into our bag’s interior pocket.

We wish the hub was a bit lighter and that is had at least one more USB-C and USB-A ports. We also found the cable to be too short; because our test computer is usually elevated, the hub dangles, but this hasn’t affected performance. A microSD card slot would have been useful, but we worked around this by using an SD Card adaptor. At times, we also wished it had an Ethernet port during stays in hotels with inconsistent Wi-Fi.

The OWC USB-C Travel Dock is relatively inexpensive, however, if you don’t need the cable management, consider our budget option. We like that OWC offers a two-year warranty on the product.

Pros: Cable storage system, solid performance and reliability, 100-watt power passthrough

Cons: Short cable, only two USB-A ports and one USB-C port, no Ethernet port

Grab from Amazon for A$95.40 here.


The best basic USB-C hub

Anker

The affordable Anker 4-port USB-C to USB 3.0 hub (A$34.68) brings back some of the USB-A ports your laptop might be missing.

If you’re looking to add some USB-A ports to your computer, then the Anker 4-port USB-C to USB 3.0 hub is the way to go. The simple hub only offers four USB 3.0 Type-A ports – the ubiquitous ones you’ll find everywhere – and nothing else, but for some people, that might be all they need.

With this hub, you’ll be able to connect peripherals like mice, keyboards, hard drives, and so on. This way, you can reuse your existing gear without needing to buy USB-C accessories.

Another great thing about this hub is that it’s affordable. Anker makes a lot of different types of USB-C hubs, and many Business Insider employees use them with our MacBook Pros. They work well, but there are reports of failure from time to time. Anker offers an 18-month warranty period as well as a 30-day money-back guarantee if you’re unhappy.

Pros: Nice design, inexpensive

Cons: Only one type of port

Grab from Amazon for A$34.68 here.


The best USB-C hub for MacBook Pro

Hyper

The HyperDrive 7-Port USB Type-C Hub (A$109) has plenty of ports to expand on your computer’s connectivity, plus it fits the design of recent MacBook Pro laptops.

Perhaps you’re looking for something to nicely complement your MacBook Pro without doing away with the computer’s sleek form-factor. If that’s the case, then the HyperDrive 7-Port USB-C Hub is a great way to go.

The hub slots into a USB-C port on the side of your MacBook or MacBook Pro, giving you one USB-C port, an HDMI port, an SD card slot, a MicroSD card slot, headphone port, and two USB-A ports. The HDMI port can connect to a 4K monitor, while the USB-C port also delivers power.

Perhaps the best thing about the HyperDrive 7-Port USB-C Hub is that it’s sleek and stylish, and it sits flushed with the laptop (the colour and material even match some MacBook Pros). While it’s designed to be plugged into the left side of the computer, it can easily be plugged into the right side instead (select higher-end MacBook Pro models), if that’s what you prefer. However, to keep the design sleek, it can’t offer an Ethernet jack.

This particular version of the HyperDrive also works with PCs, Chromebooks, and Android phones.

Pros: Nice design, lots of ports, blends in with MacBook laptops

Cons: No Ethernet port

Grab from Catch of the Day for A$109 here.


The best USB-C hub for iMac

Satechi

The Satechi Type-C Aluminium Monitor Stand Hub (A$149.95) for iMac is well-designed and offers a good selection of ports.

The iMac is a great computer, but it can be a little tricky to access all the ports on the computer because they’re located on the back. The Satechi Type-C Aluminium Monitor Stand Hub for iMac solves that problem by putting the ports front-and-centre.

The monitor stand is the perfect size for the iMac, so you can place your iMac on top of it and gain access to ports without needing to swivel the computer around. The hub also fits perfectly with Apple’s design sensibilities, and you can choose between silver and space grey.

When it comes to ports, the hub offers three USB 3.0 ports, USB-C port, SD and microSD card slots, and a headphone jack. It’s a solid lineup and should make day-to-day access to your computer’s ports a lot more convenient.

The hub isn’t perfect. For example, a few more USB-C ports would have been nice, and it is a little expensive. Still, we’ve been using the hub with a Mac Mini for some time and find it to be well worth the price. It’s not strictly for the iMac, either.

Pros: Well-designed, good port selection

Cons: More USB-C ports would be nice

Grab from Catch of the Day for A$149.95 here.


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