Belkin Thunderbolt Dock--opinions?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by Agent-J, Oct 23, 2014.

  1. Agent-J macrumors regular

    Sep 20, 2014
    Hello--I'd like to eke a couple more years out of my mid-2011 Mini, and was looking into the Belkin F4U055WW dock as a way to add USB3 support. There are several on eBay at very good prices. Does anybody have experiences with these? I'm especially wondering if they work with hubs, and if USB devices stay connected when resuming from sleep, or if they have to be reconnected.

    There are alternatives, like the Kanex eSATA+USB3 Thunderbolt adapter and the Caldigit Thunderbolt station. Are these any better?

  2. ColdCase, Oct 23, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2014

    ColdCase macrumors 68030

    Feb 10, 2008
    I've had Belkin Hub issues and their tech support is abysmal, so my opinion may be tainted.

    I have been using a StarTech Thunderbolt Laptop Docking Station TBDOCKHDPBC for several months without issue, seems to be as good as it gets. I have a pluggable brand USB3 hub hanging off it with two drives plus a printer and a DVD drive. I have not had one problem with sleep, wakeup, or performance. It just works. It has TB pass through so you don't lose a TB port but it also likes to be the first device in a TB daisy chain. I have two other USB3 drives connected to the other dock USB ports.

    The only issue I have, which seems to be common with docks, is the audio out will pop on system sleep and wake.

    There is some discussion over in the peripherals section
  3. Agent-J thread starter macrumors regular

    Sep 20, 2014
    Thank you! I'll go look.
  4. MacModMachine macrumors 68020


    Apr 3, 2009
    does it work with yosemite?

    i hear there are a lot of driver issues with it and that ethernet doesn't work.

    have those been solveD?

  5. Fishrrman macrumors P6


    Feb 20, 2009
    Be aware that there is at least one thunderbolt dock out there (sorry, I don't know which one) that -doesn't- support UASP with USB3. UASP is "USB attached SCSI protocol", which is necessary in order to get the "full speed" of 5gbps that USB3 is capable of.

    A dock without UASP support will only give you "half-speed" USB3 -- not full speed.

    You should check ALL the thunderbolt dock offerings, and investigate them ALL, before you make a decision.

    I believe has a good review of the Akitio dock...

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4 October 23, 2014