Satechi Launches Type-C Pro Hub for 2016 MacBook Pro With Ports for Thunderbolt 3, HDMI, SD, and More

Defthand

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Sep 1, 2010
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Is it that hard to imagine someone wanting to benefit both from the portability of a laptop and the versatility of connecting devices at a desk?
Be real. It’s one thing to connect a single device like a monitor or external hard drive for a temporary benefit. But to have a laptop do double duty as a desktop workstation is more inefficient than it is versatile.
 

chucker23n1

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Dec 7, 2014
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Be real. It’s one thing to connect a single device like a monitor or external hard drive for a temporary benefit. But to have a laptop do double duty as a desktop workstation is more inefficient than it is versatile.
A laptop doubling as a workstation saves money because you don't have to buy two devices. And it saves energy (and thus more money) because it uses low-power components.

Desktops are on the way out except for niches, and have been for a decade.
 
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Defthand

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...Because some people are traveling consultants...
Enlighten me. What kind of consultants perform work on site that would require the makings of a workstation?
[doublepost=1494622349][/doublepost]
Desktops are on the way out except for niches, and have been for a decade.
Which makes the illustrated scenario all the more bizarre. Why simulate/re-create a desktop setup if it’s unpopular? No profession that requires multiple monitors, external hard drives and accessories, and ports for every possible type of media, is going to pinch pennies and compromise on performance.

True, desktop PCs aren’t as popular as they once were, but their demise is based mostly on consumer trends. Such users are even less likely to connect anything to their laptop.
 

emm386

macrumors 6502
Feb 5, 2016
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Four USB - Ports, microSD, HDMI and a charging port? A "real" laptop can do that without a single dongle attached. At a fraction of the price. Granted you don't look as cool, showing off in a Starbucks though.

The sad truth though is, that this product actually has a valid use case, for Apple crippled the MacBook's peripheral options...
 
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Val-kyrie

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Was looking through that product page and I saw two display ports, I was sold. Then I came across this: "For Mac customers looking to use dual monitors with an extended desktop this is not currently possible, as MST (Multi Stream Transport) is not supported within the Mac OS."

Freaking Apple having to make everything such a PITA. This explains why there are dozens of adapters and docks out there that still don't have the sole function I'm looking for. All I want is a single adapter for multiple displays. I already spent $2500 on this bloody machine I just want the ability to have more than a single screen through a single device.
The lack of support for MST is ridiculous on a machine this expensive. Moreover, Apple has an obligation to its customers to divulge the complete specs of its computers, including details like bandwidth and MST support (or lack thereof) for its ports. Perhaps we need to spam Apple with requests for MST support in MacOS.

Is this why Apple's introduction to and demonstration of the tbMBP's connectivity was CGI and not IRL?
 
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dyn

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Be real. It’s one thing to connect a single device like a monitor or external hard drive for a temporary benefit. But to have a laptop do double duty as a desktop workstation is more inefficient than it is versatile.
That's because your definition of what is a notebook is very outdated now. It used to be a portable machine that could not come anywhere near the power of a workstation. With the advancements made in CPU and GPU development and inventions such as Thunderbolt things have changed considerably. This has lead to something like Windows Continuum where you use a dock to connect all kinds of peripherals to your smartphone which then doubles as a normal computer. That's where all this is going: you get small portable units you can do a lot with out of the box and that you can give more power by connecting compute boxes such as an eGPU to it.

Using a notebook as a workstation used to be inefficient but that is no longer the case (and it hasn't been for a few years already!). Most people, even those doing 3D CAD and/or modelling, are using notebooks because the hardware that was only seen in desktops now has a mobile version (there are notebooks with a mobile version of the Xeon processor for example; the same can be said about the GPU) so they can be mobile when they need/want to. It makes working at various locations so much easier (we now know something called "digital nomad") and it also has changed the way we think and design offices, campuses, or simply put: buildings.

Why simulate/re-create a desktop setup if it’s unpopular? No profession that requires multiple monitors, external hard drives and accessories, and ports for every possible type of media, is going to pinch pennies and compromise on performance.
That's the wrong question and you are asking it because you fail to understand why desktops have been used. In the past we didn't have the technology to create notebooks. They were always very weak and thus unsuited for many things. Over the course of years this has changed completely. We are now at a point where most people use a notebook instead of desktop because it does the same job just as well.

Desktops in essence have never been popular because you were tied to a very very specific location. Years ago you had to go to your computer room and stay there if you wanted to use the computer. You couldn't sit with your family and chat as well. With devices like a notebook and tablet you can. They're also small which make them easy to store. All those things have made notebooks/tablets far more popular than desktops.

So the real question here is not why you'd want a notebook to also be a desktop but why you'd want a device that greatly limits you in your flexibility (it is a big clunky setup that you can't easily take elsewhere). A notebook is mobile or like a desktop when you need/want it to be.
 

Defthand

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Sep 1, 2010
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That's because your definition of what is a notebook is very outdated now. It used to be a portable machine that could not come anywhere near the power of a workstation. With the advancements made in CPU and GPU development and inventions such as Thunderbolt things have changed considerably. This has lead to something like Windows Continuum where you use a dock to connect all kinds of peripherals to your smartphone which then doubles as a normal computer. That's where all this is going: you get small portable units you can do a lot with out of the box and that you can give more power by connecting compute boxes such as an eGPU to it.

Using a notebook as a workstation used to be inefficient but that is no longer the case (and it hasn't been for a few years already!). Most people, even those doing 3D CAD and/or modelling, are using notebooks because the hardware that was only seen in desktops now has a mobile version (there are notebooks with a mobile version of the Xeon processor for example; the same can be said about the GPU) so they can be mobile when they need/want to. It makes working at various locations so much easier (we now know something called "digital nomad") and it also has changed the way we think and design offices, campuses, or simply put: buildings.


That's the wrong question and you are asking it because you fail to understand why desktops have been used. In the past we didn't have the technology to create notebooks. They were always very weak and thus unsuited for many things. Over the course of years this has changed completely. We are now at a point where most people use a notebook instead of desktop because it does the same job just as well.

Desktops in essence have never been popular because you were tied to a very very specific location. Years ago you had to go to your computer room and stay there if you wanted to use the computer. You couldn't sit with your family and chat as well. With devices like a notebook and tablet you can. They're also small which make them easy to store. All those things have made notebooks/tablets far more popular than desktops.

So the real question here is not why you'd want a notebook to also be a desktop but why you'd want a device that greatly limits you in your flexibility (it is a big clunky setup that you can't easily take elsewhere). A notebook is mobile or like a desktop when you need/want it to be.
With all due respect, you fail to see the irony.

Sure, mobile devices like laptops have improved in processor performance. Even the humble iPad has a 64-bit processor. And the convenience of using a laptop anywhere, is not lost on me. But at the end of the day, none of the mobile solutions are adequate substitutes for tasks that require workstations or large screens. Otherwise, users wouldn’t be lamenting the lack of ports to connect peripherals. If you’re ultimately going to tether to peripherals or a monitor to perform a task, your laptop’s portability becomes irrelevant.

Laptops are suitable for small-screen tasks. Designers and engineers will use them in a pinch, but we mostly use them to present our work—rarely to create it.
 

Naraxus

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Oct 13, 2016
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So this is what Apple proposes as a solution to their asinine decision to eliminate common ports?
 

MH01

Suspended
Feb 11, 2008
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Is it that hard to imagine someone wanting to benefit both from the portability of a laptop and the versatility of connecting devices at a desk?
In which case you did not understand my comment.

Nothing wrong with using docs etc, though do you think that pic is a little over the top ? If no , that's fine.
 

dyn

macrumors 68030
Aug 8, 2009
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With all due respect, you fail to see the irony.
That would be because there is absolutely no irony. Just someone on the internet who seems to be stuck in the early 2000s. It's 2017, we've got tablets that fully replace desktops for many! Things have changed considerable and the old desktop-notebook situation no longer applies (as can be seen in slaes figures).

But at the end of the day, none of the mobile solutions are adequate substitutes for tasks that require workstations or large screens.
At the end of the day this is just flawed logic. You are comparing a device where you have to connect peripherals in order to even use it with a device that already comes with all those built in. The only real reasons why people connect all the peripherals to the notebook are:
  1. because they can (they have the option and they'll use it if it makes life comfortable)
  2. because its ergonomic (which means that it is not always a choice, it is mandatory due to law)

Connecting peripherals due to the task is something they'd do with any device so there isn't any device that is better suited here. It's also mostly done at the office which comes at no surprise if you look at the law of various countries.

Otherwise, users wouldn’t be lamenting the lack of ports to connect peripherals.
Only the potential and highly theoretical MacRumors users do that. The real world ones don't (the only thing they connect are power and perhaps an external disk).

If you’re ultimately going to tether to peripherals or a monitor to perform a task, your laptop’s portability becomes irrelevant.
A desktop has never been portable and never will be portable. Notebooks have gone from being portable to also being able to function as a desktop, meaning that you can connect loads to it if you want to and use more power when you want to.

The keyword is flexibility, not portability. Notebooks can replace desktops but desktops can never ever replace notebooks.

Laptops are suitable for small-screen tasks. Designers and engineers will use them in a pinch, but we mostly use them to present our work—rarely to create it.
One word of advice: you are not the rest of the world so stop behaving that way. It is extremely rude and disrespectful towards others. In this case it also makes you look extremely silly since there are an enormous amount of people (both amateur and professional) that have shown that notebooks are very suited for many things that are not presenting, designing and engineering. Too many photographers, videographers, DJs, audio engineers, vloggers, etc. only use a notebook. No external display, no peripherals, just a notebook. You really need to look at what a digital nomad is.

You are seriously underestimating what notebooks have been able to do in the past decade as well as how many tasks are suited for small screens. You are also seriously overestimating the amount of external devices people are using. Very little people connect more than power and an external drive to their notebooks. Hence why this multiport adapter is more like a niche product (there are cheaper alternatives for those wanting HDMI and USB-A plus there are alternatives that come with ethernet).
 
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Defthand

macrumors 65816
Sep 1, 2010
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One word of advice: you are not the rest of the world so stop behaving that way. It is extremely rude and disrespectful towards others.
Obviously, you don't understand irony or hypocrisy, or you would not have made this statement. I stated an opinion. I also demonstrated how illogical and inefficient it is to substitute a laptop for a workstation — not a home or office PC. It's you who are accusing me of not embracing your preferences.

Frankly, kid, you lost credibility when you claimed that 3D modeling is routinely done on laptops—something I'm intimate with. Worse, you spoke of workstations and iPads as if they are related. You're confusing their purposes and their abilities. Try to stay on topic next time.
 

Kajje

macrumors 6502a
Dec 6, 2012
718
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Asia
These large dongles take away the space where my left wrist knuckle would balance/rest.
If you use the keyboard a lot - like I do - this might not be the thing you're looking for.
 

Pbrutto

macrumors 6502a
Apr 21, 2015
607
1,255
Eastern PA
You're both welcome! I'm so glad to help. It was a really frustrating experience for me...I imagine I'm not the only one. :\
You wanna add some frustration? I have the lg ultrafine 4k, I also built a current pc a few months ago. All I wanna do is use the same monitor for both. Try figuring out what supports DisplayPort alternate mode, what cable will support it, and wether or not a nvida card can output it is a nightmare. I tried my hdmi 2.0 to USB-C cord (did indeed output 4k 60hz to a 4k tv, plugged it into pc and then lg ultrafine....nothing, not a flicker...
 

fel10

macrumors 68000
Feb 2, 2010
1,620
956
Woodstock, GA USA
Or you know, Apple could've just added all this **** to those overpriced MacBook pros instead of making their consumers spend more for dongles and ********. But hey, as long as their fan base keeping eating this **** up, who cares right? It's just all about courage, am I right?
 

MBrandonLee

Suspended
Jul 5, 2012
41
0
You wanna add some frustration? I have the lg ultrafine 4k, I also built a current pc a few months ago. All I wanna do is use the same monitor for both. Try figuring out what supports DisplayPort alternate mode, what cable will support it, and wether or not a nvida card can output it is a nightmare. I tried my hdmi 2.0 to USB-C cord (did indeed output 4k 60hz to a 4k tv, plugged it into pc and then lg ultrafine....nothing, not a flicker...
Barf. No thank you :(
 

johnmacward

macrumors regular
Jul 12, 2011
183
23
Never been a fan of these all in one hubs that snug right up against the side of the MacBook body.

Not only is it being attached via one flimsy USB port, but visually it looks really bulky and unbalanced.

It almost seems more appropriate to have a single cable coming out of the USB-C and have the hub attached to that.


Correction: connection is via 2 USB ports.
I'm also glad to see it's connected by two ports, but still it feels a little on the flimsy side for me. I would love to see a strong magnet added on the MacBook side to keep it physically well attached to the MBP.
 

ForkHandles

macrumors regular
Jun 8, 2012
174
349
If you need to buy one of these then the truth is 'You bought the wrong laptop!'

I am sure that they will sell well but cant get over why anyone would choose a machine that didn't bundle with the technology that they needed to get their job done.
 

chucker23n1

macrumors 68030
Dec 7, 2014
2,902
3,751
With all due respect, you fail to see the irony.
The "irony" you're talking about is called flexibility.

Laptops are suitable for small-screen tasks. Designers and engineers will use them in a pinch, but we mostly use them to present our work—rarely to create it.
Fewer and fewer software developers use desktops.
[doublepost=1494668711][/doublepost]
If you need to buy one of these then the truth is 'You bought the wrong laptop!'
Utter nonsense.

I am sure that they will sell well but cant get over why anyone would choose a machine that didn't bundle with the technology that they needed to get their job done.
They did. The MBP has four frigging Thunderbolt 3 ports. That's massive amounts of bandwidth that can be used. And I can use it to connect multiple screens, Ethernet, hard drives, power, and more.
 

MMPascal

macrumors member
Oct 14, 2008
51
15
Germany
To the guy that is asking about why using a laptop and then create a full on workstation at homeans not using a desktop computer.

I work as a photographer, I have a big monitor at home, a bunch of hard drives, a Wacom tablet, a mouse and a keyboard. So I really only have to put the computer on the side and it works like a desktop. I do all my editing there.

when I do shoots, I grab the MacBook, go out and shoot everything on the go. Sometimes we create a workstation there with rented monitors (if we shoot in studio) and sometimes not if we outside. Sometimes I shoot in a whole different country. Coming home I connect again and do all the work. Having two computers and shifting files from computer to computer then back to the other one when I am going to see clients is way to complicated and interrupt my workflow.

Im actually about to built another workspace since I am getting a office so I will have my main workspace there, then a smaller version at home if I feel like working at home and just the computer when I'm on the run.
 

theluggage

macrumors 601
Jul 29, 2011
4,369
3,089
As I suspected, you get 4K HDMI at 30hz, which is awful to work with.
The 4K @ 60hz issue is still a big one with these. You have to have a dedicated dongle for it.
The problem is, current USB-C hardware can't support 4k@60Hz and USB 3 speeds over a single cable.

The USB-C cable has 4 high-speed wire pairs (lanes) capable of carrying USB 3.1 data, plus a spare low-speed pair that can carry "legacy" USB 2.0 data.

In DisplayPort mode, either one, two or four of those lanes are physically allocated to DisplayPort data. For low-res displays or 4k@30Hz, one or two lanes are sufficient, leaving two or three lanes free for USB 3.1. Unfortunately, 4k@60Hz requires all 4 lanes for DisplayPort, which just leaves the spare USB 2.0 wires for other peripherals.

This is because current devices only support DisplayPort 1.2a. DisplayPort 1.3/1.4 supports higher data rates and can drive a 4k@60Hz display with just two lanes, leaving space for USB 3.1 data to share the same cable. Unfortunately, although the USB-C/DisplayPort Alt Mode spec supports DisplayPort 1.3, most of the USB-C controllers currently in use don't, especially the Intel USB-C/TB3 controllers in Macs - bear in mind that Intel's on-chip graphics doesn't do DP1.3 either. Of course, the display would also have to support it...

(AFAIK all USB-C to HDMI adapters use a DisplayPort-to-HDMI converter - there is a native "HDMI alt mode" in the pipeline which takes DisplayPort out of the equation, but I don't think that's currently in play).

Thunderbolt 3 is still limited to DP1.2a (insane!) but rather than physically allocating some lanes to DP (DP 1.2a actually wastes almost half the bandwidth of each wire pair), it moshes the DP and PCIe data together so that they can co-exist on the same physical wires and not "waste" bandwidth. This is much more efficient and - combined with the fact that TB3 runs the cable twice as fast as USB-C anyway - means it can easily support 4k@60Hz, and even 5k - although 5k actually uses two 'virtual' DisplayPort cables. The downside is that while DisplayPort-over-USB-C is basically DisplayPort and only needs a simple adapter at the display end, TB3 relies on a full-blown TB3 controller (or dock) at the display end.

See: https://www.vesa.org/news/vesa-brings-displayport-to-new-usb-type-c-connector/

Still - 4k/5k displays are still bandwidth hogs and if you want to run them alongside a performance-critical high-speed TB3 or USB 3.1 device, I'd strongly advise subjecting yourself to the indignity of plugging two cables into your computer.
 

satchmo

macrumors 68020
Aug 6, 2008
2,272
2,084
Canada
If you need to buy one of these then the truth is 'You bought the wrong laptop!'

I am sure that they will sell well but cant get over why anyone would choose a machine that didn't bundle with the technology that they needed to get their job done.
Yes, but Apple didn't leave many options for those looking for a pro laptop with legacy ports.
We just happen to be in a transitionary period where dongles/hubs are necessary to tie us over.
 
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