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Plugable 7-in-1 USB-C Hub - 4k 60hz, 1000Mbps Ethernet, USB 3.0, SD Card - $49.95 Delivered @ Plugable Amazon AU

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Following up from the previous deal I posted here, this holy grail USB-C hub is now back in stock after many months of not being available. It's not the best ever price (has been as low as $42), but I definitely think nothing else in the price range compares if you need 1000mbps Ethernet, 4K60HZ HDMI and USB3.0 (there is usually a compromise on at least one of these elements on most models that have all of these, either 100mbps Ethernet, 4K30HZ HDMI or USB 2.0.)

I personally own this model and use it with my M1 MacBook Air, and it works great. Literally the only negative point I have to share (and is prevalent in reviews) is the bright white light on the Ethernet port, but this isn't an issue for me, especially after putting a bit of tape over the offending LED.

Enjoy!

Price History at C CamelCamelCamel.

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closed Comments

  • +2

    Excellent price…
    More like a Swiss Army knife than holy grail!
    Waiting for a dual display one that doesn’t suck or cost $500.
    Maybe I’ll just Macgyver together my two with a 3d print and pretend it’s a single dock.

    • Legend. Name checks out

    • I'm assuming one of those USB-C ports doesn't support DP?

  • i'm looking for a dock that is also compatible with the Nintendo Switch. This suggests it won't work with it. Can someone confirm otherwise or suggest a similar hub that definitely does.
    https://gstylemag.com/2021/01/28/plugable-usbc-7in1e-review/

  • OP, doesn't the product description has:

    4K HDMI DISPLAY - The 4K USB-C to HDMI adapter can push your creativity to the next screen with resolutions up to 4K 30Hz.

    4K/30Hz, so DP 1.2 based chipset?

    • Just below that, it says "For laptops that support DisplayPort 1.4, this hub supports HDMI displays at up to 4K 60Hz."

  • For those M1 owners raving about these "hubs/docks", I need you to check something for me. Are you able to reach 4K @60Hz with HDR turned on on your M1 / M1 Pro / M1 Max? On the Displays Preferences, choose the external monitor, choose Scaled, is there an HDR checkbox. If there is an HDR checkbox, please let me know which hub you have. Please also make sure the display is running at 60Hz. The adaptive refresh option is okay too as long as it shows up to 60Hz (i.e. 40-60Hz).

    • Can confirm this works with 4K 60hz HDR on my M1 Air.

    • Yep 4K/60/HDR works. I uploaded a screen cap of my system profile a few months ago for another thread and it’s still online here:
      https://imgur.com/pwg9i3u

      • Thanks. I tested a similar product from a competitor and got the same result. What apple does with HDMI 2.0 appears to be 4K/60Hz 8-bit HDR. However, if you opted for a 4K USB-C/alt-mode monitor (note: USB-C/alt-mode, NOT Thunderbolt 3 based monitor), then it gets weird. If you opted to let it operate in the same way these hub work (prioritise data), it appears to do 4K/60Hz DP 1.4 (DSC 2) at 10-bit without HDR. If you permit it to go and take the full bandwidth (dropping USB-A ports to USB 2.0), it does support 4K/60Hz 10-bit HDR. Unlike Windows, I don't think you get to choose whether you want 8-bit HDR or 10-bit HDR.

  • Does this hub need to be powered externally for all the ports to work? I've bought and returned 2 different hubs now that only partially work until I plug in external power to the hub.
    If this one works fine with just the power from my PCs usb-c port then I'll be buying it.

    • Which PC? If it is a desktop PC, does it actually implement PD? It could be your PC. I tried another hub (from a competitor) on both Mac Mini and Macbook Pro. Work without having a power adapter. My only PC type device which supports USB-C with PD is a NUC, I reckon that would also work.

      • Great question, it's an HP elitbook workstation with thunderbolt 3 and usb-C PD, and a MacBook Pro, which gave the same result. Without power plugged into the hubs type-c, all that worked was the USB ports. Once power was plugged into the hub, then the display and other ports started working fine.
        If anyone has seen otherwise when using this, then I'm more than happy to buy one.
        The need is for a hub to conveniently slot into my work bag, where I can take it to customer on-sites and not have to be tethered to a power cord, while patch into networking equipment/devices.

        • Which Macbook Pro (13 inch or 15 inch and model (i.e. year))? I tested an Old 2017 13 inch Macbook Pro with a UGreen hub (cheap DP1.4 hub, kinda like this one). Running on battery only, HDMI, Gigabit Ethernet, USB A ports worked. However, I only connected a keyboard and a mouse to the USB A ports. Maybe those used very little power.

          No, I am not recommending that given that you tried a number of them and are having issues.

          • @netsurfer: It's a 2016 13inch with touchbar/4 thunderbolt 3 ports. Fundamentally the same as the 2017 model with 6th gen Intel instead of 7th Gen.
            If you had all of those ports running on battery, then it's already a step up on the hubs I've tried.

            • @Hepklep: I'm not sure whether you have the same issue I have with MPB 13 inch 2017, USB-C/Alt-mode DP 1.2 based dongles work okay. These newer USB-C/Alt-more DP 1.4 based dongles don't work so well with the 2017 13 inch MBP.

              The 2017 and 2016 MBPs have the older Intel Thunderbolt 3 chipset. Getting HDMI output to work on newer DP 1.4 based chipset hubs, displays can be a pain (massive compatibility issue and unreliable). I happened to have an Intel 8th gen Coffee Lake based device with Thunderbolt 3, while it is also DP 1.2 based (frustrating), at least compatibility wise, the HDMI out on these hubs / dongles work more consistently with the newer Thunderbolt 3 chipset included in the 8th gen device. If I didn't, I would blame all those dongles.

              You would think with M1 / Thunderbolt 3 / USB 4, the mess would be over. No. There is still some pain. OP's comments made me check a few things. M1, through these dongles, would do 4K/60Hz HDR 4:2:2 8-bit. However, if you opted for an USB-C monitor (DP 1.4) in high data mode, Apple somehow elected to go 4K/60Hz 10-bit, which knocks out HDR (due to limited bandwidth allocated to the video output). Switching to high resolution mode on the monitor would allow HDR to operate in 10-bit mode BUT all USB-A ports on that monitor drops to USB 2.0.

              Thunderbolt based monitors are better for Macs BUT with our 2016/2017 MBPs, the DP 1.2 limit restricts our choices. The reality is that we are the courageous ones going with first gen Thunderbolt 3/USB-C MBPs. It's such a mess with USB-C / Thunderbolt.

  • Can anyone comment on how hot this gets running PD charging? (Warm to touch or burning hot?)

    • +1

      This looks exactly same as the one I have got CableCreation 7-in-1 USB-C Hub https://www.amazon.com.au/CableCreation-Adapter-Reader-MacBo..., which has 100W PD charging. It never got hot when charging 65W laptop.

      • +2

        Pluggable is more honest when quoting specs. It is max 100W input, and passthrough (with input of 100W) is 87W.

        CableCreation is quoting 100W PD charging, which is simply input. One thing that we tend not to realise is that if we were to use just original charger (or charger with the wattage sufficient for laptop but not factoring the wattage the hub consumes), after the passthrough (which isn't 100%), the laptop charges at a slightly slower rate. All these hubs are like that. They don't magically generate electricity.

        • Agree regarding the PD rating. I am aware of the available power (subtracting the power lost with hub), hence I use 100W GaN charger with the hub, which provides heaps of juice (more than the original 65W charger in my case)

          • @EssendonUser: I get the appeal, but I just don't trust 3rd party chargers when it comes to power.

            • @netsurfer: Read my comment below. I was somewhat tempted to get the CableCreation one previously, just to test it and muck around with it. However, if that 5V mode support is indeed down to 0.5A, then it is a bit of concern. Hoping someone could re-test it with Apple, Samsung or Lenovo power adapters. Anyway, all these hubs are like that. I just don't trust them when it comes to power delivery. With most of them simply try to go down the no e-marking route (which is dodgy because anything above 60W really should have it), and with all these odd current settings, you are counting on your laptops to do the safe guard.

              Personally, while I think Anker power supplies are acceptable, I stick with originals (and not through one of these hubs). Ones worse than Anker, I wouldn't use them for Power.

        • +1

          Not sure if CableCreation updated their listing since you looked at it but it does give the breakdown at output now. The text below can be found right at the bottom of the description (above the model comparison table)

          USB-C 100W PD Charging
          Support PD 3.0 charging at max 20V / 5A, use the hub while keeping your laptop charged.

          (We recommend using a 100W PD charger: 92W for charging the connected laptop and 8W for powering the hub).

          • @bfg100k: Okay, I read the Japanese review for the CableCreation hub again (because that review indicated 8W measured). I cannot read Japanese so I had to use Google translate. From the photos and my test (albeit on a competitor product), this is what I can gathered.

            • The reviewer used PD trigger tests, probably because the hub doesn't have e-marking.
            • I have a meter which supports PD trigger testing. When we test that mode, we generally do not connect ANY device to the USB-A ports, Gigabit ethernet or card reader.
            • Problem is, the PD trigger on the 5V mode, according to that Japanese reviewer, shows 5V @ 0.5A. That's a big drop from 5V @ 3A as per USB-C standard (12.5W reduction). Also, he DID show the PD trigger data for the Anker power supply (the input power supply) directly, it shows 5V @ 3A - as expected; a standard compliant USB-C power adapter.
            • So he ignored the 5V mode issue and chose to look at the higher voltage ones and concluded 8W drop. I understand you generally want to look at the drop on the highest voltage supported, but eventually, as the charging gets closer to 100%, the charging voltage would tend to drop down (to protect the batteries).
            • I tested my USB-C power adapters (Apple) and the hub I have. It has a somewhat similar behaviour, 5V @ 3A support is gone (when doing passthrough). However, mine shows 5V @ 2A.
            • The main issue with PD trigger based tests is you get different results depending on the input power adapter. Furthermore, it is inaccurate (because it is reporting the best case from a USB-C meter, NOT the amount your laptop will allow once negotiated). I tried two Apple power adapters, one is reporting only 5W power drop (across all voltages). So, do I just assume the hub I have uses only 5W? No, I cannot because once I switched to a different adapter, I get totally different results.

            Honestly, you cannot tell unless you really run it through a meter in a full end to end setup. That reviewer was unable to do that because he has a Lenovo laptop, which, as soon as you put most of these meters in between, would stop charging, so you cannot measure it in a real life setup. It's possible to measure it with an Apple laptop (as Apple doesn't seem enforce PD very strictly so probing in the middle is doable).

            • @netsurfer: my dell latitude and lenovo yoga do complain about slow chargers, e.g. if I put yoga's 65W charger into the hub's PD, laptop immediately warns about slow charger due to the power eaten by hub. But when I put 100w, it charges without any issues and charging time looks identical or even better.

              • @EssendonUser: Is that a good thing though? Needing to get a more powerful charger. So, basically, if I have a 61W Macbook Pro, when using one of these hubs, I should try to get at least the next power supply up (i.e. 87W power supply) if I want to stick with original. Also, no mater which power supply you pick, 5V @ 3A is not possible (unless you get a power supply that's against USB-C specs for 5V).

                Our laptops are quite willing to tolerate non standard charging. Anyway, when you check these accessories, cables, chargers through a meter, you would understand why it's better to stick with original, at least with power. Even USB-IF certified doesn't mean anything. Some of the cheapo USB-IF certified cables for example are unreliable.

                This needing to get a more powerful charger is something people should be aware of. The fact that the original charger doesn't work (honestly, it is due to cost of these hubs, let's face it, if these are $100, we wouldn't buy them) for some laptops isn's something most people are aware of prior to purchasing these. Also, there is no easy way to tell whether the hubs work with Google TV. Is the issue chipset compatibility, or power related?

  • I had this https://www.amazon.com.au/gp/product/B0957DFS8V/ref=ppx_yo_d... but cannot use it to charge my iPad or iPhone. Also, should these not work without connecting to a laptop when USB-C power is connected? Do the USB ports draw power from the laptop only?

    Could somebody recommend a hub which is also able to charge USB devices (iPhone, iPad, others) reliably?

    • You need to provide as much information as possible. iPhone and iPad exact models. Cables used (USB-C to USB-C cable, USB-A to lightning cables), are they Apple originals or 3rd party ones? Power adapter (again, model, type).

      No, USB-C isn't just plug and play. On the power side, there is more to it. It's not 100% passthrough, there is no such thing, these hubs don't have self generating fusion reactor inside, they consumes power. Also, most consumers don't know USB-C/PD well so to keep the cost down, they would use the cheapest possible way to wire it up (rather than going for the highest USB-C/PD standard).

      • Apple original USB-A to lightning cable.

        iPhone 12 Pro
        iPad mini 2
        Macbook Air 13” stock 30W power adaptor

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