I’m planning to purchase a new iMac this year and trying to decide which of the many docks to get along with it. I do have several external hard drives that have USB A 3.0 connectors so I need 3 of these ports at a minimum. I’m considering the OWC Thunderbolt Dock https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/owc-thunderbolt-dock. Anyone have any experience with that one or alternative suggestions? (I don’t necessarily need to be able to charge a laptop via the dock.)
I am using the CalDigit Element TB4 hub with my MBP 14" and am very satisfied with it. It has one input TB4, three downstream TB4 and four USB-A. The USB-A ports are all capable of 10Gb/s. It is able to power and run a SuperDrive with a utility installed, and can charge connected devices while the Mac is not connected.
Also, CalDigit just released the TS4 (successor to the TS3 Plus), you may want to check it out too. It is possible to daisy chain the Element hub to the TS3 Plus/TS4 hub.
Thank you, #chengenguan; The Element TB4 looks like a very promising option.
When I received my mbp14 last December, I bought the OWC Thunderbolt 4 dock referred to. After initial problems of not reading the manual properly, I followed my old advice from my mainframe days of RTFM, plugged the cable in the right hole. It has worked a treat ever since.
The OWC dock connects to ethernet LAN, one of the usb ports is used to connect to another powered D-Link usb hub for running additional usb3 devices. And it powers my laptop.
The better half also has a much older 2015 owc thunderbolt 2 dock that she uses for a one plug connects all mode for her 2015 mbp which has worked flawlessly for the last 6 years.
I got the Saitech hub that clamps to the bottom of the iMac. 3 A ports and 1 C port alongs with SD and micro-SD. Comes in two colors, blue and silver. The blue matches my wife’s blue iMac but the silver isn’t as nice for my red iMac.
If I needed something more I would seriously consider the CalDigit Element hub.
I would also second the CalDigit TB4 Elements Hub. It’s an awesome TB accessory.
But if all you need though is a couple of USB-A ports, there are substantially cheaper options. The real question is how much power those ports need to deliver. If your external HDDs all have their own power supplies (which they usually do, and they should!), then all you care about is 5/10Gbps data throughout and even very inexpensive USB hubs work great for that.