Dell WD15 USB-C Dock compatibility?

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by rywen, Mar 10, 2016.

  1. rywen macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2014
    #1
    Is anyone using the Dell WD15 USB-C dock with the new Macbook? It was just released in January, and I see a Slashgear post from the time of announcement that claims compatibility with the new usb-c Macbook however the official specs don't mention this. I'm tempted to buy it because most of the other docking stations like the Caldigit are still "coming soon" where the Dell appears to be available (and I have a Dell gift card to use).

    However, between google and searching the forums I can't seem to find any reviews or comments on how it works with the macbook, so I'm wondering if it either isn't compatible or isn't actually shipping.
     
  2. lumos macrumors newbie

    lumos

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2016
    #2
    Hi, I'm interested to buy this dock. Have you received some feedback about the MacBook compatibility?

    Thank you
     
  3. rywen thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2014
    #3
    After posting this, I wasn't able to get a good answer from dell sales as to if it was compatible with the new macbook. So I decided to place an order and experiment for myself. The dock just showed up today, but I've played around with it and haven't had much success. The macbook seems to recognize all the ports in the docking station, and upon checking display properties, it was even able to identify the monitor I had attached to it, but I couldn't get any display output with any resolution or refresh rate I tried from either the displayport or hdmi connections.

    My experience with Dell support was horrible for this product. I tried calling support just to see if they could give me an 'official' answer on macbook compatibility. Even though I don't expect them to support the macbook, I figure I can't have been the first person to try this and there has to be someone at dell that knows if the two products are compatible or not. Getting to the right department was impossible. No one could find the service tag in their database. I kept getting tossed back and forth between departments from sales to customer support to tech support. Apparently there's no tech support department that deals specifically with docking stations... everyone I talked to wanted to know what computer I was using it with so they could transfer me to that support department. Any of these computer-specific departments didn't want to answer dock questions until they knew what computer i was using, and immediately upon hearing I wasn't using one of their computers they wanted to pass the buck to another department. I could have pretended I was a Latitude user and asked about mac compatibility "for a friend" but I don't feel this should be necessary to get someone to answer general questions about a product. It's clear that Dell support doesn't treat this product as anything beyond an accessory for specific machines of theirs (even though at CES they promoted it otherwise).

    I've initiated a return... I guess I'll just wait for the Caldigit dock to become available.
     
  4. SSD-GUY macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 20, 2012
    Location:
    London, UK
    #4
  5. lumos macrumors newbie

    lumos

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2016
    #5
    If you are in time, try to install the new OS X 10.11.4 that solve some usb-c compatibility issues.
     
  6. deeddawg macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2010
    Location:
    US
    #6
    Intriguing for a portable dock, too bad about the "Estimated Release Date: May 2016" part though...
     
  7. drkrab macrumors newbie

    drkrab

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2016
    #7
    I have a WD15 and a 2016 MacBook12, and a Dell P2715Q monitor. With this combination, I can run 1920x1080 @ 60Hz; but only on the DisplayPort. The monitor is native 3840x2160 so it's somewhat disappointing of course.

    For some reason the HDMI output does not talk nicely. The Mac recognises the screen, but the screen stays black.

    The WD15 powers the macbook12, and is nicely equipped with USB ports etc.

    So this is acceptable, but I'm used to 1440 vertical; so it's a bit more blurry. I'll try also with some other monitors around the office.

    The USB-C/HDMI adapter from Apple does not work with the Dell monitor; I also tried some other monitors and the USB-C/HDMI adapter didn't work.

    Using the WD15 Dock w/DP, I can only get to 720 vertical on my Apple 27inch Cinema Display (1/2 resolution of native).

    Conclusion: WD15 is an ok buy. I think you have to live with 1080p for external monitor to the MacBook12. But I hope I can manage to get something working with 1440 vertical... I'll be back if the situation improves.
     
  8. Picapau21 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2015
    #8
    Can i just double check something...the apple HDMI adapter did not work with the Dell and other monitors? Thats quite worrying for an apple product? HDMI is HDMI....isn't it?!
     
  9. drkrab macrumors newbie

    drkrab

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2016
    #9
    Could be that the Dell 4K monitor is somewhat picky with the feed; I've heard about that being the case some times.

    Yes, you understood it right. I checked with two different HDMI cables, but you never know what went wrong. I'll make sure to double check and write back here.
     
  10. Idarzoid macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2013
    #10
    Does the dock charge the rMB? I'm assuming it does, but I've yet to find a confirmation on this.

    If the issues are resolved and the dock charges, could be a nice option for me.
     
  11. drkrab macrumors newbie

    drkrab

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2016
    #11
    Yes, it does charge (the charging icon on the MacBook comes on). I have not verified how fast. I've seen some reviews of other docks that charge very slowly. But I just got it today, and I left the dock at the office.
     
  12. Idarzoid macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2013
    #12
    Ah, great.

    It doesn't bother me that it charges slowly, as long as there's no battery drain when the machine's under heavy load.
     
  13. drkrab, May 3, 2016
    Last edited: May 3, 2016

    drkrab macrumors newbie

    drkrab

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2016
    #13
    A follow up...

    Now I got myself a Dell U2715H, which is native 2560x1440. I managed to get this to work with the rMB12 in native resolution @ 40Hz. This is entirely usable as long as you don't want to use it for playing high fps games or watch a ton of video.

    Using SwitchResX, I simply created a series of custom configurations for 2560x1440; and 40Hz was as far as I could push it.

    So - MacBook12 + WD15 + U2715H is very usable combination.

    As a side note - I wasn't able to do the same trick with my LCD Cinema Display 27. It insist on only doing 720p.
     
  14. ///M5 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 14, 2009
    #14
    well, I just got the WD15 but nothing is recognized by the Macbook, except for the charger. How can I fix this?
    --- Post Merged, May 9, 2016 ---
    Did you have to do anything to "make it work"? MacBook 2016 doesn't see anything connected but power.
     
  15. diggy33 macrumors 6502

    diggy33

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2011
    #15
    I have the Dell TB15 dock for my Precisin 5510. I will connect it tonight and see if it works. Just got the OWC dock sent to my job, so I will get this hooked up tonight as well. 20160510_142824.jpg
     
  16. deeddawg macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2010
    Location:
    US
    #16
    I'm eager to hear how you like the OWC dock. Seems a nice unit, albeit they're certainly proud of it.
     
  17. rywen thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2014
    #17
    I'd love to hear how the OWC dock is working. They seem to be the first real 'dock' to the market although I didn't buy because early reviews seemed less than stellar. I'm hoping they have any issues fixed.

    I've been watching the caldigit usb c docks but the delivery date has slipped from january to june now.

    I have a hootoo ht-uc001 that I'm using essentially as a dock. It works well although in retrospect I'm not sure i'd buy it again. it costs about $5 more than the apple multiport adapter, and for the money you get two more usb ports and a SD slot which are nice. However, I didn't realize how short the cord was before i ordered, and I generally have greater trust in Apple to provide updates to their adapter to maintain future compatibility. Maybe that won't prove to be a concern.
     
  18. diggy33 macrumors 6502

    diggy33

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2011
    #18
    I'm hoping I can sit down with it this weekend and get everything hooked up. I've been so busy at work the past week and a half I've been too tired to do anything when I get home
     
  19. diggy33 macrumors 6502

    diggy33

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2011
    #19
    So I've finally had a bit of time to hook things up and give it a test. Here's what I have:

    2016 rMB 1.3GHz M7
    Samsung U28D590 28-inch 4K monitor (used with default Mac settings, no 3rd party software like SwitchResX)
    OWC USB-C dock

    What works flawlessly:
    Gigabit Ethernet - the Mac recognized the port and established an IP almost immediately
    USB ports - connected USB 3.0 thumbdrives to both High Powered Charging ports and USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports. All recognized the drives attached in about 2 - 3 seconds. Not tested: data transfer rates from the laptop to the drive

    Not Tested:
    SD Card reader
    Microphone jack

    Monitor findings:
    The default for the display when connected was 1920x1080 at 30 Hertz. I was able to change to 2560c1440 (low resolution), with refresh rate of 60 Hertz. There was no lag or delay in moving windows around the screen. Youtube videos played well in the player, but going full screen on 2560x1440 resulted in some slight distortion when there were quick movements in the video. Played a few movie trailers on iTunes, both in the player window and full screen, and no distortion noticed.

    Thats all I've had time to do for now. I did also connect my Dell TB15 USB-C docking station used for my Precision 5510 up to the Mac, but it didnt recognize it at all
     
  20. ahendarman, Dec 7, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2016

    ahendarman macrumors member

    ahendarman

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2013
    #20
    I just picked up a 12" M5 2016 Macbook during the last BF. I also have the WD15 that I am using with my Dell XPS 15 9550.
    With fully up-to-date firmware, the dock works very well for my setup.
    Connected to the WD15 dock are
    - One Dell U2412M (1920x1200) through Display Port
    - Logitech unifying receiver for keyboard and mouse
    - Gigabit Ethernet Cable
    - External USB drive (WD Passport 3TB)
    - Headphone
    As far as I know, everything works, the dock charges the Macbook (Approx 20W).
    It also works in a clamshell mode.
    Seems to be an ideal docking solution.

    -- Update --
    Dual monitor sort of working. The two display can only mirror each other. It does extend from the Macbook built-in LCD but the two external monitors can only display the same thing.
     
  21. jpjk macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2016
    #21

    I'm using it with my macbook now but it's not reading my harddrives or my mouse/keyboard receiver - is this your experience? If it does work... did you have to update the firmware with a windows?
     
  22. Quddy macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2016
    Location:
    Japan
    #22
    FYI, Dell specs say that this dock does not support HDCP so no watching legal video content that is copyrighted. Keep that in mind before buying it if this may affect your usage. Personally I would give it a miss.

    Marble DCS2 looks interesting to me but it's another startup project although they seem to be responsive. Not available yet.
    http://www.marbledcs.com/
     
  23. ahendarman, Dec 8, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2016

    ahendarman macrumors member

    ahendarman

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2013
    #23
    hi,

    I updated the bios/firmware/driver from Windows side with the XPS 15 using this guide
    http://www.dell.com/support/article/us/en/19/SLN301970

    I can confirm that the WD15 is seeing the Logitech unifying receiver and the WD My Passport 3TB.

    Dual monitor sort of working. The two display can only mirror each other. It does extend from the Macbook built-in LCD but the two external monitors can only display the same thing.

    I am on a 2016 M5 with Sierra 10.12.1

    3tb.jpg
    MacBook.jpg
     
  24. rockethouse macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2013
    #24
    Thought I would chime in as I've had similar issues with this but I am up and running perfectly fine now on my 2016 Macbook Pro and Dell U2715H via HDMI.

    The secret - don't use DisplayPort, as said it can only do 1920x1080 at 60hz or native at 30hz (which is totally unusable, you'll get a headache sooner or later).

    HDMI works perfectly fine (well at least for me). The only issue I had was a pink/purple hue at first but I just had to change the monitor colour output from RGB to YPbPr and its perfect now at full native resolution 2560x1440 at 60hz, even sound from my Dell monitor passes through perfectly.

    USB ports tested and working fine... the only thing left is to see how it goes with an Audio Interface.

    TLDR; It works fine on a 2016 Macbook Pro via HDMI and is MUCH cheaper and looks better then the other alternatives. I picked this up for $170AUD for a refurbished model on eBay.
     
  25. jpjk macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2016
    #25
    I must just have an old version or something - the display is the only thing working well. It mirrors or extends, too.

    Did you do anything differently? Install new drivers etc?
     

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