Satechi Review: Type-C USB Hub is Hit-or-Miss, Smaller Adapter is Reliable

Discussion in 'Guides, How Tos and Reviews' started by MacRumors, Nov 23, 2015.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    When Apple launched the new 12-inch MacBook earlier this year, some of the first accessories for the laptop -- which uses USB Type-C exclusively -- were various adapters and dongles that allowed customers to expand the initially limiting capabilities of the hardware with access to traditional USB, HDMI, and SD card ports. Apple itself launched a line of expansion cables for USB Type-C devices, and now third-party accessory company Satechi has its own Type-C line of USB hubs and adapters for customers to choose from.

    Satechi's Type-C USB 3.0 3-in-1 Combo Hub​

    Satechi sent me two of the company's new accessories focusing on the connectivity between USB-C devices and more traditional inputs, mainly USB 3.0. One of the accessories is a complex "Hub" ($39.99, on sale for $34.99) with three USB 3.0 ports along with one SD and one microSD card slot, while the other is a simple dongle ($14.99) with a USB-C connector and a traditional USB-A 3.0 port. Each product comes in three different colors to match the shades of the new line of Retina MacBooks: Gunmetal (Space Gray), Gold, and Silver. Because neither dongle offers an additional USB-C port, there's no passthrough charging feature.

    Satechi's Type-C USB Adapter​

    Overall, Satechi successfully mirrors Apple's visual aesthetic with the two accessories, and although I was sent Gold accessories that didn't exactly mesh well with my Space Gray MacBook, it seems when color-matched the new USB hubs would blend right in with their respective MacBooks.

    Click here to

    Article Link: Satechi Review: Type-C USB Hub is Hit-or-Miss, Smaller Adapter is Reliable
  2. Soccertess macrumors 65816

    Oct 19, 2005
    hmm... Hopefully that is an early production model and those issues will be fixed. Seems like the killer feature missing is a C-USB port to charge at the same time you have all those new ports.

    Personally, I don't agree with Apple that everything is wireless now. HDMI and USBs are quite common. Airplay is ok and limited to the Apple TV, and if I didn't have the App Beamer, it would be basically useless.

    Also, Air Drop utility drops significantly as there is no App that works with window machines. So until these are addressed, the new Macbook is not ready for many consumers. But Adapters like these are a good way to fix these problems.

    Crossing my figure for wireless charging!
  3. knemonic macrumors 6502a

    Jan 14, 2009
    Why can't any manufacturers find a chipset that does pass through charging? It's mind boggling how long the MacBook has been out and Apple really only has the only pass through charging dongle.
  4. freepomme Suspended

    Oct 30, 2015
    Boston, MA
    You know what? I don't even know how to use USB-C! ¯\(°_O)/¯

    The Geniuses even had a hard time explaining it. It's kinda complicated.
  5. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
  6. 0098386 Suspended


    Jan 18, 2005
    Really? Implying they're marked down because they sent you a different coloured model to your MacBook? Seems like an odd thing to point out.
  7. Gudi, Nov 23, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2015

    Gudi macrumors 68030


    May 3, 2013
    Berlin, Berlin
    I hate it. So ugly in both color and form factor. Apples white plastic adapter already looks much nicer.


    I'd rather buy a big stationary docking station for the MacBook than this fancy USB hub.

  8. jmh600cbr macrumors 6502a


    Feb 14, 2012
    Exactly my thoughts
  9. jimthing macrumors 65816


    Apr 6, 2011
    London, UK (Europe, Earth, Space)
    Roll-on Tbolt 3 over USBC. Put two gen 2 ports on the next macbook Apple, and then can you finally then introduce THAT port across your whole product line, so we can all move on to the new thing.
    Thank you and goodnight.

    It's obvious to me the first edition new macbook is not there yet, it's a second gen device for sure, as the first one doesn't even do gen 2 10gbit speed.
  10. Gudi macrumors 68030


    May 3, 2013
    Berlin, Berlin
    It could be smaller if all four ports would be USB-C. And than even smaller if all four ports were vertical. No stupid printing on it. That's the USB hub I would buy.
  11. BMcCoy macrumors 68000


    Jun 24, 2010
    Jeez.. talk about serious workarounds..
    The need for such an adapter surely proves that Apple is wrong about customers wanting a laptop with no useful ports on it.
  12. Jonny1989 macrumors member

    Apr 20, 2010
    The need for eyelashes on womens cars does not prove car manufactures are wrong about customers wanting a car without headlight eye lashes. I've had a macbook for 5 years and it's not had a disk or usb in either of them. This will be for people who need this for whatever reason, may it be they bought the macbook that doesn't suit them or they only need it rarely.
  13. DennisD7 macrumors member

    Jul 17, 2012
    London, UK
    Just give me a USB-C hub/dongle with a long cable so I can hide it all under my desk. This is an extremely neat solution just waiting to happen, I don't know why it's so hard to figure out. Clean desk, one cable, I plug in my laptop and bam, I have keyboard/screen/mouse/charging/etc
  14. RightMACatU macrumors 65816


    Jul 12, 2012
    Perfect example of "Let's be the first to market something".
    No usb-c, no buy'ee
  15. BornAgainMac macrumors 603


    Feb 4, 2004
    Florida Resident
    If you need all those adapters and ports, you were the wrong buyer for that laptop. The Macbook shoud be used like a iPad as a device that isn't wired to anything but with Mac OS X capabilities instead of iOS capabilities. With a bonus you can hook up a to a portable USB-C drive when they are available.
  16. nick42983 macrumors 6502


    May 18, 2009
    LOL like there is any comparison between eyelashes on cars and USB ports on computers. "may it be" said that you're on the radical fringe pretending like it's normal.
  17. ignatius345 macrumors 68020

    Aug 20, 2015
    What are you even talking about? You're making a comparison between a purely ornamental add-on for "womens" (lol) cars and use of a port that's been standard on computers for -- I don't know -- 15 years or so? Just because you're on some other level from everyone else and don't use USB devices doesn't mean you're anything but an edge case at this point.
  18. lowendlinux Contributor


    Sep 24, 2014
    North Country (way upstate NY)
    I think this is more for on the go.
  19. MacFan23 macrumors 6502

    Feb 17, 2010
    Isn't this the point.
    Right now we need things like this because not everything has USB-C, and we're restricted to one port on the current MacBook. In future macs and devices we likely won't need accessories like this. I know the first thing I did when I got the MacBook was buy USB-C cables for anything I might need (micro USB, lighting, etc) and just swapped them out for my USB cables.

    Having only one port is a problem for me, but often with my MBP I need more than 2 USB ports (say I'm charging my watch, phone and a pair of headphones and a spare battery overnight when traveling) and I have carry a USB hub with me. It's pretty much the same thing.
  20. toke lahti macrumors 68020

    Apr 23, 2007
    Helsinki, Finland
    Pretty simple corrections to basic design flaws:
    1. Put card readers to the right end; they produce less torque.
    2. Put c-male plug one usb port step to the middle. Hub sticking out of mb's corner, if carried around attached to closed mb, is less likely to break mb's socket than when devices are attached to current design.

    Satechi, feel free to use these tips free of charge. You can also contact me for rewards...
  21. ignatius345 macrumors 68020

    Aug 20, 2015
    I'm totally in agreement with you -- I was addressing the previous poster who was generalizing that nobody needed multiple ports because he didn't.
  22. burgman macrumors 68000


    Sep 24, 2013
    Just because the two of you don't get his pretty funny comparison. Or get the progression to USB-C By several big named companies, well I feel kinda sorry for you, actually not really. I look at adapters as an interim solution until rest of the industry catches up.
  23. ignatius345 macrumors 68020

    Aug 20, 2015
    Good for you! Enjoy your adapters. I'm glad you're out there driving the market for this stuff but I'll be milking some more use out of the considerable arsenal of USB-A devices I already have while the rest of the world "catches up" to you.
  24. nick42983 macrumors 6502


    May 18, 2009
    Yes it's a hilarious comparison. Actually good humor should have an element of truth to it, this does not.

    As for the "rest of the industry catches up" do you mean until they create USB-C peripherals that we're forced to buy to replace our perfectly functional USB-A tech? Great idea to have to buy a $79 adapter to connect to a VGA projector, who does presentations anymore anyway? Thinness over functionality isn't innovation.
  25. SvenSvenson macrumors regular

    Jul 17, 2007
    It's a port. Just like USB, Firewire, Thunderbolt, serial, parallel, PS/2 etc etc. It's a different shape, it can receive power. It's not complicated.

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