Defining Docking Stations with Anker’s PowerExpand Elite 13-in-1 Thunderbolt 3 Dock
Our friends at Anker have had a busy year already with a host of new releases under their belt. With people working remotely extensively amidst the pandemic, computing peripherals undoubtedly remain in high demand and we’ve watched with admiration as Anker has remained at the top of their game even in such trying times. In particular with a large percentage of people currently working off of their work laptops from home it’s no surprise that they’ve found themselves limited for ports for additional computing tech.
So we’ve been extremely interested to watch the release of Anker’s PowerExpand Elite 13-in-1 Thunderbolt 3 Dock. This impressive-looking docking station offers Thunderbolt 3 connectivity for USB-C Laptops, alongside a host of other capabilities under its sleek exterior. So when the team asked if we’d like to try it out ourselves how could we refuse?
Like Anker’s previous products the packaging carries that same high level of quality. Packed within the neatly presented box you’ll find everything you need to get started. Accompanying the dock unit is an Anker Power Adaptor, a quick welcome guide and a Thunderbolt 3 Cable which runs up to 2.3ft, more than enough space to get yourself connected. Compatibility-wise we’re using an iMac which perfectly integrates with the dock, however, we’re told the Anker Docking Station also easily connects with MacBook Air 2020/2019/2018, MacBook Pro 2020/2019/2018/2017/2016; XPS, Inspiron 7000, Latitude 7000/5000; EliteBook; Yoga X1/C900/C700, ThinkPad X390/T490/T590; Swift 7/5/3, Spin 7/5/3; ZenBook Pro Duo; NoteBook 9 Pro, NoteBook 9 Pen, NoteBook 9. On top of which there’s compatibility for a host of other systems.
The dock itself is impressively demure considering the number of capabilities under its sleek silver shell. With a footprint of just 88.5mm x 41.9mm and standing at just 125.8mm high it seamlessly integrates within a desktop environment without looking at all obstructive or ‘clunky’. Also with the unit being fitted with rubbery padding there’s little risk of any marking on your desktop from prolonged use of the Anker Dock.
Put to the test getting set up was quick and simple and we were blown away by the sheer array of possibilities that the PowerExpand opens up to users. It’s incredible to think that one stand-alone unit offers dual Thunderbolt 3 ports, a 3.5 mm AUX port, 2 x USB ports, a HDMI port, an Ethernet port, 4 USB-A ports and SD/microSD card slots. With connect-ability so limited on modern laptops, most notably on the MacBook these really are a lifesaver for those working with multiple storage devices such as photographers, editors, videographers and workforces working within the media. Relating to users, again the fact you can also connect your display via the Thunderbolt 3 port which actively supports 5k at 60hz is a real bonus. Accompanied with the fact that the HDMI port supports a resolution of 4k at 60hz. We tried this across two displays and were really impressed with the crystal-clear streaming capabilities the dock offers between 2 displays. We’re also told that with the addition of a usb-c to dual HDMI splitter you can connect up to 3 displays simultaneously which really makes this a game changer compared to other docks out on the market.
A key component to the dock has to be how quickly files transfer and with this being a Thunderbolt dock it’s no surprise that transfer speeds are blisteringly fast. With a 40Gbps Thunderbolt 3 connection, we found transfer times for a file of approx 20gb came in at just over 6 seconds for Thunderbolt 3. Something which is hugely important for those quickly transferring media files between projects and need video files moved fast from SD cards to servers.
On top of this charging options are equally effective with 85W and 15W Thunderbolt 3 ports plus an 18W USB-C Power Delivery port. What really makes this docking station stand apart is the fact that PowerExpand really does offer the end-user a wide variety of ways to quickly and effectively charge anything from smartphones, tablets, laptops and much more! We were really taken aback by the fact that the Anker Dock was able to charge a MacBook Pro in less than 2 hours with the same pretty much being said for a new iPhone 11 Pro. Again both hugely important if you’ve got places to be and you need to get your hardware charged fast to allow you to be on the move.
It’s features like these which really make the dock stand apart by allowing the user to quickly charge their tech, whilst simultaneously transferring files from SD card / usb stick to laptop, whilst exporting video to external monitors!
It’s easy to say we were simply blown away by the Anker PowerExpand Elite Dock, but that would be an understatement. The tech stashed under this sleek, minimalist casing is incredible and quite frankly mindblowing. At a time when people are reliant on their laptops and seeking a means of multitasking without compromising on port space, it’s an absolutely essential purchase. Get yours today from ww.anker.com