MBP 16 (2019) - USBC HUB QUESTIONS

Miscellaneous

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 30, 2014
129
8
London, UK
Hi Peeps!

Just got a new MacBook Pro 16 and a USBC HUB/DONGLE for connecting devices. I intend to use the laptop mostly as a desktop with some portable use.

When booting up from a complete shut down/power off stage the MBP will not boot with the USBC hub connected. It displays a black screen with a white Apple logo with no progress bar.

Booting up without the USBC hub connected seems to be working flawlessly and so is the USBC hub when plugged in after the MBP has booted.

Is there any way of getting the MBP to boot up with the USBC hub already connected?

Thanks.
 

smirking

macrumors 68030
Aug 31, 2003
2,626
2,288
Silicon Valley
Do you see anything else besides the white Apple logo? Is there a password field? Does it just stay on the logo or does anythiing happen at all? Did you get this machine new from Apple? Did you migrate a previous MacOS system to this 16"?
 

Miscellaneous

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 30, 2014
129
8
London, UK
Hi @smirking

Nothing else when booting up with the USBC hub connected other than the Apple logo, no password field, just stays on the logo, brand new not directly from Apple, no migration set up as a new computer.

Any ideas?

Would it be worth contacting Apple support?
- - Post merged: - -

This is a link to the USBC adapter...


Purchased brand new also.

Thanks.
 

smirking

macrumors 68030
Aug 31, 2003
2,626
2,288
Silicon Valley
Well, maybe someone else will have something useful for you, but yeah I'd say this would be something to take up with Apple Support. A hub shouldn't block you from starting up.

I don't have a 16" so I can't speak from direct experience, but I've had Macs for many years and own or have owned 3 different variants of the TB3 laptops. I've never had a hub or a connected device block a boot-up like this. Is there any chance you have a remote volume selected for the Startup Disk in your preferences?
 

Miscellaneous

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 30, 2014
129
8
London, UK
Thanks @smirking

Cheers, yes I just spoke with Apple support who suggested the usual SMC/PRAM/SAFE MODE troubleshooting stuff.

I think it may be a faulty adapter, but then it works once the Mac has booted so I'm not sure what's causing the conflict at startup.

I hope I can get this sorted out soon, thinking of returning the dongle for another brand.

Can you recommend any USBC Hub/Adapter with a similar spec/price?

Thanks.
 

smirking

macrumors 68030
Aug 31, 2003
2,626
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Silicon Valley
I think it may be a faulty adapter, but then it works once the Mac has booted so I'm not sure what's causing the conflict at startup.
I don't really know of any that I can recommend as I don't own any of these all-in-one hubs. I'm a bit spoiled. I have an LG 5K with 3 extra TB3 ports to act as my hub for dongles that I need to use. While I haven't made much use of mega hubs, I have plugged in just about every kind of device imaginable into my MBP and they've all worked just fine.

The only bit of advice I can give about hubs is if you find a hub you like and it's more expensive than most other options, shop around for ones that look just like it on other sites. If you found it on Amazon, see if something just like it exists on eBay because there's a chance that someone is simply selling you a device that they'll order for your shipping address and pocketing the difference.

Othertimes, it's more innocent and you can simply find the same hub under different brand names with different pricing strategies.

However for that hub you referenced above, I don't know if it'll get much cheaper than that so at that price you're probably buying from an actual reseller who keeps those in stock, but for other TB3 accessories, be on the lookout for rebranded lookalikes that might be half the price.
 

Miscellaneous

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 30, 2014
129
8
London, UK
Quick update...

I have decided to return the FitFort USBC adapter and try a different brand. I have placed an order for the following...


Just a quick question...

The replacement UGREEN USBC hub offers 100W Power Delivery. Does that mean that if my MBP 16 is fully charged...I would be able to operate it through the power adapter via connection through the UGREEN hub/adapter?

Thanks.
 
Last edited:

smirking

macrumors 68030
Aug 31, 2003
2,626
2,288
Silicon Valley
The replacement UGREEN USBC hub offers 100W Power Delivery. Does that mean that if my MBP 16 is fully charged...I would be able to operate it through the power adapter via connection through the UGREEN hub/adapter?
It means that it can handle up to 100W of pass through power, which means you can plug in the 96W power adapter that came with the 16" MBP and supply full power to your MBP with the power line plugged into the hub. It'd basically be no different than plugging the power directly into your MBP.

I'm not sure why you mentioned a fully charged state, but it doesn't matter if your laptop is fully charged or not. You can always use your laptop while it's plugged into a charger regardless of the battery level. It's just that if the power is below what your MBP needs to stay fully charged, it will slowly lose battery power as the power line isn't able to supply all the power you need to run.

Underpowered chargers will still charge your MBP, even while it's in use. They just won't be able to keep pace with battery drainage.
 

Miscellaneous

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 30, 2014
129
8
London, UK
Thanks @smirking

That's a lot of helpful information, much appreciated!

The reason I mentioned that the MBP is fully charged as I believe that it is not a good practice to charge and use a device at the same time?!? So I would usually first fully charge the battery and then use the laptop with the mains connected. That's what I've always thought anyway, I'm probably wrong, do you know if that's true in this case?

In the past I had an older generation MBP which I had used in a similar way. Of course that had all the relevant ports built in to the unibody enclosure.

I will let you know how I get on with the replacement adapter. I'm very grateful for all of your help with this.

Thanks.
 

dwig

macrumors 6502a
Jan 4, 2015
695
280
Key West FL
It means that it can handle up to 100W of pass through power, which means you can plug in the 96W power adapter that came with the 16" MBP and supply full power to your MBP with the power line plugged into the hub. It'd basically be no different than plugging the power directly into your MBP.
...
Well, not quite, but close. The hub will consume a bit of power itself and will need to provide power to devices connected to it's USB-A ports. The hub and attached devices could consume 5-20w, depending on the number and type of connected devices.

Still, it's quite likely that using the hub with a 96w power adapter will provide enough power to the MBP/16 to maintain its charge state and likely be able to charge the battery further at a decent rate, depending on the attached devices and the power demands currently running software imposes.
 

smirking

macrumors 68030
Aug 31, 2003
2,626
2,288
Silicon Valley
Well, not quite, but close. The hub will consume a bit of power itself and will need to provide power to devices connected to it's USB-A ports.
Oh yeah. This. I always forget that other things consume power too because it's not an issue I ever have to deal with given that my hub (a 5K monitor) is powered.
 
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Miscellaneous

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 30, 2014
129
8
London, UK
Thanks @dwig @smirking

No luck with the replacement. I’m up and running now, a different approach but working flawlessly.

The UGREEN USBC adapter wasn’t working as expected either so I’ve bought the following to connect the devices I need...



The ANKER adapter is currently being used to connect a previous generation Apple Wired Keyboard/Mouse and a 1080P HDMI external monitor.

I am using two of the above Cable Matters cables to connect a USB 2.0 Audio Interface and a USB 2.0 MIDI Keyboard Controller to two separate ports on the MBP 16. Both of these devices are bus powered so it’s probably best practice to allocate a TB3 port for each.

Thanks again for your help.
 
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