USB 3.0 docking stations can be a valuable addition to your business for many reasons. Thanks to multiple super-fast ports, docking stations can help transform your working area from an ordinary station to a high productivity powerhouse. There are a wide variety of docking stations out there. Some laptop and desktop PC makers offer official branded docks for their computers, but there is also a whole world of third-party docks that are available in a variety of unique designs, prices, and features.
Here is our breakdown of some of the best USB 3.0 docking stations.
Best USB 3.0 Docking Stations
- Top Pick: WAVLINK Enterprise-Level Universal Docking Station
- Runner Up: Plugable 14-in-1 USB-C and Thunderbolt 3 Dock
- Best Value: Plugable USB 3.0 Universal Laptop Docking Station
WAVLINK Enterprise-Level Universal Docking Station
Top Pick: Thanks to its 20 ports, the WAVLINK is an ideal choice for designers and businesses at large. The dock is equipped with 4 HDMI and 4 DP Ports that support quadruple 4K displays. A built-in heat sink allows for stable operation even after extensive use. Enjoy blazing fast surfing speeds with the 2.5G ethernet port which is 2.5x faster than 1Gbps Gigabit Ethernet. This universal dock is compatible with a variety of Windows, Chrome OS, Mac OS, Ubuntu, and Android operating systems.
Plugable 14-in-1 USB-C and Thunderbolt 3 Dock
Runner Up: The TBT3-UDZ is among the most powerful, accessible, and versatile docking stations. Its unique design provides users with the ability to connect to two 4K displays using either DisplayPort or HDMI. This dock also contains a detachable base that you can mount to keep the dock in a vertical position or detach to keep the mount in a horizontal position. It is compatible with a variety of laptops that use Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C removing the frustration of finding a docking station that is compatible with your laptop.
Plugable USB 3.0 Universal Laptop Docking Station
Best Value: If you are looking for a versatile dock, the Plugable USB 3.0 Universal Laptop Docking station is certainly a good option. Designed for flexible expandability, this dock allows you to connect your peripherals and add dual monitors using a single cable that connects back to your laptop. The single connection also gives you 11 extra connectivity ports for your microphone, headphones, Gigabit Ethernet, HDMI connections, and so much more. The vertical design also reduces the station’s footprint, giving you more space for things that matter most.
WAVLINK USB 3.0 Universal Laptop Docking Station
This is a truly universal docking station as it seamlessly connects to any standard type A or type C connectors. With just a single USB cable the WAVLINK allows you to connect to up to two additional monitors and 11 accessories. This dock is compatible with both Apple Mac OS and Windows 10, 8.1, and 7. It comes with a Gigabit Ethernet port, six USB 3.0 ports, audio input and output ports, and HDMI outputs for mirroring/extending your Windows desktop to external monitors.
Anker 575 USB-C Docking Station
If you need a docking station that can allow you to fast charge your laptop or phone while still connecting you to multiple other devices, you need to check out the Anker 575. This 13-in-1 USB-C dock is equipped with a DisplayPort, an Ethernet port, a USB-C data port, 3 USB-A ports, an 18W Power Delivery USB-C port, 2 HDMI ports, SD/microSD card slots, a 3.5 mm AUX port, a DC input, and an 85W laptop-charging USB-C port. The DisplayPort and dual HDMI ports give you the ability to simultaneously stream media to up to 3 monitors in 1080p. Anker also provides an an18-month warranty.
Elecife USB C Docking Station
Connect every imaginable thing using the Elecife 16-in-1 docking station. This state-of-the-art docking station features all the important features that you would need in a great docking station. With this docking station, you can now simultaneously stream media to up to 3 monitors in UHD. You also get a 100W laptop charging USB-C port, 7 USB-A ports, a USB-C data port, an SSD Enclosure, DC input, an Ethernet port, and a 3.5 mm AUX port. Included in the box is a power adapter, a USB-C to USB-C Cable and you also get an 18-month warranty.
StarTech USB 3.0 Laptop Docking Station
Add triple-monitor support to your workstation using this USB 3.0 docking station. To support all your USB peripherals, this dock provides five USB 3.0 ports. It also has a headset jack and separate audio and mic ports, ensuring you have all the connections you need to stay productive. It is available in black and silver colors.
What to Look for When Buying USB 3.0 Docking Stations
Docking stations are powerful tools that can help transform your work experience, adding significant efficiency and fun to your workday. Here are a few things to consider before buying a docking station.
- Compatibility: This is certainly among the most important things to consider when looking for a docking station. Docking stations are largely available in two options – custom docking stations from the manufacturers and third-party universal docking stations that are compatible with a variety of computers. This is certainly an excellent option if you have multiple devices from a variety of brands.
- Video Output: Think about the video quality that you need. Many stations will support dual 4K panels, while others might support one 4K display and one or two monitors at lower resolutions. Think about your work environment and choose the video output that would be most ideal.
- Audio Output: Closely related to video is audio output. If you run a podcast, webinar, or broadcast media, it is important to choose a docking station that supports a 3.5 jack for your microphone and dedicated external speakers.
- Size and Design: The docking stations come in a variety of sizes, and they can be either vertical or horizontal. You need to think critically about your available space and your workstation setup to choose the right size and design.
- Number of Ports: This is probably the most important factor of them all. You are probably looking for a docking station to gain additional ports. Most capable docks will include HDMI ports, USB-A ports at fast USB 3.0 speeds, USB-C ports, Ethernet connectivity, and specific ports for microphones and headphones. Consider all the ports that you need for your docking station.
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