Review: Anker PowerExpand Elite 13-1 Thunderbolt 3 Dock
Looking for an All-in-One Powerhouse Thunderbolt 3 Docking Station for your computer? The Anker PowerExpand Elite 13-1 Thunderbolt 3 Dock is a beautiful, solid, well made and fast device. It’s a little taller than a basic can of soup and the thickness of a paperback novel, making it the perfect size for any desktop.
The Anker PowerExpand Elite 13-1 Thunderbolt 3 Docking Station will enhance anyones desk in 13 ways, plus add some organizational style. It has an elegant, yet rugged, design and feels ultra premium to the touch. The all metal/aluminum frame surrounding the ports stabilize the dock very well and the extra weight keeps it solidly planted on the desk, not easily pushed over.
The transfer speeds for each of the individual ports are extremely high, and when it comes to charging, this little beast gets the job done faster than most docking stations. Anyones desk would look fantastic with fewer wires and clutter taking up space. Anker did an outstanding job by keeping it simple with just a clean, sturdy frame and great connectivity that’s easily accessible on both ends no matter how it sits on your desk. They’ve also made sure the power adapter cable is long enough to sit on the floor away from your desk. The rubber bottom also protects your desktop from any scratches.
Depending on how you place it on your desk (standing upright or laying flat) you’ll have six ports facing you and the power button. One of the two USB Type C ports has the letters PD near it. This stands for “Power Delivery” which means not only can it be used for transferring files quickly, it also produces 18W of power for charging a smaller device, like a phone.
- SD Card Slot
- Micro SD Card Slot
- USB-C Port
- USB-C Port (PD) – (Power Delivery for Phone Charging)
- USB-5GHZ Port
- Headphones Jack
When turning the unit around, you’ll notice on the back side another set of expansion ports. These seven include two Thunderbolt 3 ports for the fastest transfer speeds available on the market. One of these two Thunderbolt 3 ports has a symbol of a laptop above it and 85W below it. This port should be used to connect directly to your laptop for the much needed benefit of charging your Macbook a little faster than the default 60W charger that comes from Apple.
- 4K HDMI Port
- Thunderbolt 3 Port (85W – Macbook Charging)
- Thunderbolt 3 Port
- USB-A Port
- USB-A Port
- USB-A Port
- Gigabit Ethernet Port
Finding the perfect docking station for your lifestyle can be quite a task, but the Anker PowerExpand Elite 13-1 Thunderbolt 3 Dock is definitely one to be considered. The sheer amount of plug freedom is really helpful, and it will adapt smoothly to whatever combination that is needed. However, you should be aware that it can get uncomfortably hot, especially as you try to use more and more of its features at once. Take heed and make sure you have some sort of cooling method if you plan on using this docking station to do some heavy lifting for you, so to speak.
But compared to its wonderful features, any flaws are fairly minor. It’s unbelievably helpful to be able to charge many different Apple products simultaneously, and the power adaptor is strong enough to keep the lights on in Chicago for a week! (This may be a slight exaggeration upon further reflection.) But either way, after a great deal of use over time for an assortment of different tasks, it’s definitely a recommended product for anyone needing a small and complete docking station for your computer needs.
The Anker PowerExpand Elite 13-1 Thunderbolt 3 Docking Station can be purchased directly from Anker as well as on Amazon for US $249.99