10 Best Docking Stations in 2021
The best way to expand your laptop’s functionality in a simple way is through the use of a docking station. The best docking station will make it easier to work from home if need be. Have you always liked the features of a desktop but didn’t appreciate the bulk? Now you have the freedom to turn your laptop into a proper work station complete with dual monitors, speakers, mouse and keyboard. In fact, you can connect any device as long as it has a USB port.
Docking stations come in handy especially if you have a laptop that has few ports, like a MacBook. If it is your first time shopping for the best docking station, you may become overwhelmed by the sheer number of options available. We want to make your shopping experience a bit easier by providing you with a list of the top docking stations on the market.
List of The Best Docking Stations in 2021
10. WAVLINK Docking Station
This versatile docking station is a kit that is compatible with both Windows and Mac operating systems. It has dual display outputs through 1080P HDMI and DVI ports. We like that you get DVI to VGA adapters which increases the docking station’s flexibility. What this essentially means is that you can have two display monitors from one laptop. This means that you can surf the internet while also watching a movie. No need to constantly switch between tabs which is annoying.
The docking station comes with six USB ports, and two of them offer supers SuperSpeed 3.0 for faster connections. This is on our list of the best docking station because of how it enables you to connect your laptop to several screens, speakers, printers, mouse, keyboard and other USB devices.
- Provides SuperSpeed USB 3.0
- A built-in dual screen support
- Supports both Windows and Mac OS
9. UtechSmart Hub Station
UtechSmart takes pride in being the first docking station on the market that offers a triple USB type C display connection. The hub itself is made from aluminum which makes it both sturdy yet lightweight. Not many companies have been able to offer multi-display using type C connectors. UtechSmart overcame this challenge to provide you with a docking station offering a triple monitor display.
This docking station features an ultra-slim design making it both powerful and portable. Thanks to the USB connectors, you don’t have to carry multiple cable types. Instantly plug and play with the fast USB ports. If you are a gamer or a power user then you will appreciate the ultra-fast data transfers that enable you to transfer files and download movies quicker.
- Triple display for USB Type C
- Three display mode options
- Durable and lightweight with slim and portable design
- Fast data transfer speeds
8. TOTU Docking Station
This is the best docking station to use if your laptop supports Type C Thunderbolt 3.0. You need to note that even though this station supports both Windows and Mac operating systems, you will see different content on the extend mode on Mac OS. However, when in mirror mode, all the content displayed on the screens is the same.
The station offers a triple display for Windows OS only. Mac OS is not supported. You can also extend or mirror your display using a USB C adapter. For a true cinema-like experience, you can stream 4K FHD and UHD. However, if you extend multiple displays, you will be limited to 1080p for each display. The device is compatible with the latest tablets, laptops and smart devices on the market.
- 12-in-1 connectivity
- Triple display for Windows system only
- Ultra-high-speed data syncing and transmission
- Compatible with the latest laptops and smart devices with USB Type C
7. Targus Universal Station
If you are short on space and need a device that will function as a desktop but without the bulkiness, then the best docking station from Targus will fulfill your needs. Its sleek and compact design makes it ideal to use in small spaces. The angled top provides a good space for you to play your laptop on as you work. The non-slip cover also ensures that your laptop will not accidentally slip and slide.
This docking station also supports dual display port that allows you to set up two different monitors. You can multitask by using one for work and the other for play. Or perhaps you want to keep surfacing the internet and you keep up with your favorite TV show. Lastly, the station has a USB 3.0 port that offers blazing-fast data transfer speeds.
- Sleek innovative design
- Supports dual display ports
- USB 3.0 for faster connections
6. CalDigit TS3 Station
If you are looking for a solidly made docking station with enough connectivity options then look no further than the TS3 form CalDigit. It has a solid aluminum frame which is both sturdy and lightweight, and measures in at slightly over one pound. It offers up to 15 ports that you can use to connect to other devices such as keyboards, SD card, ethernet cable, monitors and more.
The dock has a small enough footprint and you can place the station vertically or horizontally depending on the space available. We like that you get a lifetime of customer care support in case of any issues that may arise. You also get a one-year warranty with the device. The docking station is also capable of charging your laptop with up to 85W of power.
- 15 port connectivity options
- Small footprint
- Delivers up to 85W of power
- Sturdy yet lightweight aluminum frame
5. Dell D6000 Dock
If crystal clear entertainment is your thing, then you can enjoy ultra HD 5K resolution on one screen or 4K resolution on three displays. Why have a mediocre gaming or movie experience with low resolutions when you can have the best? This is one of the best docking station from Dell and offers the means to connect your laptop with other devices through USB Type C and 3.0 ports. It doesn’t matter which type of laptop or operating system you have; this docking station supports them.
This is ideal if you need to share workspace, share content or are on the move and need the ability to connect to various devices without the bulk of a desktop computer.
- Enjoy single Ultra HD 5K resolution or three Ultra HD 4K
- Compatible with multiple operating systems and devices
- Plug and play feature that allows fast and instant connection
4. Sabrent Docking Station
This docking station from Sabrent offers a variety of connectivity options to enable you to expand your laptop’s capabilities. Whether you need to improve your workstation or enhance your entertainment experience, this is the docking station to choose from. It is compatible with both Windows and Mac OS.
The two USB 3.0 ports provide superspeed connectivity allowing you to make data transfers at a fast rate. The station also has a microphone jack, two USB 2.0 ports, gigabit ethernet port for lightning-fast speeds, and a speaker port. It also supports HDMI and DVI displays.
You can also charge your laptop or other smart devices using this station thanks to the two fast-charging 2.4A ports. These can come in handy when your smart devices are running low and need a quick battery boost.
- Superspeed USB 3.0 connection
- Multiple display monitor
- Compatible with both Windows and Mac OS
- Two USB 2.0 ports
3. Plugable Docking Station
This the best docking station if you are looking for a simple yet effective way to expand your workstation. Geared towards Windows users, this device offers dual video outputs, USB 3.0 ports, microphone jacks, and a 2-year warranty.
In addition to being compatible with only Windows operating system, you also cannot connect it to non-Display link USB graphic adapters. These include SMSC, j5, and MCT. If this connection is important to you, we suggest looking for an alternative docking station. You are also limited when it comes to playing some protected Blu-ray disks. The device does not offer HDCP either. If you are a gamer then we would suggest you look elsewhere for a docking station that is compatible with your needs. However, despite that, it is still a useful docking station.
- Compatible with Windows operating system
- Dual HD monitors
- Flexible expandability options
- Best used for web and productivity software
2. Microsoft Docking Station
This is the right docking station to use if you are looking for a simple device that transforms your laptop into a desktop PC. The Surface connect from Microsoft is capable of providing a variety of connectivity options as well as charging your laptop. Connect your monitors, mouse, keyboard, speakers and more, and utilize the full capabilities of this docking station.
The docking station comes with all the ports you could need including four USB 3.0 high-speed ports, gigabit Ethernet port, HD video ports and audio output. If you are a fan of the minimalist concept then you will love how sleek and simple this station looks. All the ports are designed to offer lightning-fast connectivity. You can easily plug and play in a matter of seconds. It is designed to be easy to set up so that anyone can use it.
- Windows and Mac compatibility
- Magnetic surface connect cable
- Fast connectivity
- Easy setup
1. Dell D3100 Station
With just one cable, the Dell D3100 docking station enables you to connect to the internet, various external devices, and an extra three display monitors. The docking station offers a simple yet effective way of expanding your laptop’s capabilities. If you are looking for an enhanced work and entertainment environment then this station should be your first choice. In addition to supporting Ultra HD 4K displays, you also get high-speed connectivity thanks to the three USB 3.0 ports. You also get two USB 2.0 ports which enable you to connect with a variety of different devices such as speakers, scanners and printers.
We like that you no longer have to feel constrained with the limited connectivity your laptop may have. With a docking station, you can include everything you need.
- Connects to three additional monitors
- Supports one Ultra HD 4K display and 2 FHD displays
- USB 3.0 high-speed data transfer
- Suitable for gaming
Buying Guide – Docking Stations
As you shop for the best docking station, there are various factors you need to have in mind.
Type and laptop model
Despite there being hundreds of different types of docking stations available on the market, not all of them work with all laptop models and types. If you have a Windows laptop, you may want to look for docking stations that cater to Windows operating system. The same goes for if you have a Mac OS. Better yet, for flexibility, you may want to choose a docking station that is universal and compatible with all laptops. This way, if you ever change your laptop you can still use the same docking station.
Type of the main connector
Which port on your laptop are you going to use to connect the dock to your machine? The connector you intend to use should be the same as the connector on the dock, otherwise, you will not be able to use the docking station. USB Type C ports tend to offer more flexibility in terms of connectivity. Which a Type C port you will be able to connect to multiple devices like monitors, keyboards, flash drives and more.
The type of docking station you choose will depend on what you need it for. Does your work require you to have multiple screens at a time? Or is just one extra screen enough? Also, if you are always on the move you may need a docking station that is capable of charging your laptop. This minimizes the need to have an extra power bank.
The right cables
You also need to ask yourself whether you have the right cables to connect the various devices to your docking station. For example, an HDMI port needs an HDMI cable, without which you will not be able to utilize that port.
Docking stations are ideal to have if you want the benefits of a desktop without the actual bulk of one. Our reviews have made it easier for you to choose the best docking station that will suit your needs. Now you can enjoy working from home without compromising on additional tech features.