Satechi just launched its new Pro Hub Max earlier in the year, delivering one of the first USB-C adapters made for Apple’s latest M1 Pro MacBooks. Now after putting it to the test with one of the new Apple Silicon machines, our latest Tested with 9to5Toys review reports on whether the Apple-friendly design is worth the cash.
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Hands-on with the Satechi Pro Hub Max
Complementing all of Apple’s latest MacBooks, M1 Pro models included, Satechi recently launched a pair of USB-C hubs to add even more ports into the mix. We previously took a hands-on look at what the more miniature offering of the two brought to the table, and we are now back to see what its larger counterpart has to offer.
Arriving with a 8-in-1 design at $99.99, the new Satechi Pro Hub Max adapter plugs right into the side of your machine. Unlike other USB-C hubs on the market, this one ditches a cable to streamline the setup even further. Within that compact build are eight notable ports, headlined by a USB-C 4 slot capable of 96W charging passthrough. Then there is 4K60 HDMI, Gigabit Ethernet, SD card readers, a single USB-A slot, and a USB-C 5Gb/s data port. Oh, and don’t forget the 3.5mm audio jack.
Here’s a closer look at the spec sheet:
- 1 x USB 4 – up to 96W charging, up to 6K 60Hz display output
- 1 x HDMI port – up to 4K 60Hz
- 1 x USB-A 3.0 data ports – up to 5 Gbps, does not support charging or CD drives
- 1 x micro/SD card readers
- 1 x Gigabit Ethernet port
- 1 x USB-C data port – up to 5 Gbps
- 1 x Audio jack port
I’ve been using Satechi’s new Pro Hub Max adapter for the past few weeks and have to say that I am quite a big fan of the overall package. Right off the bat, it’s worth calling out that this isn’t going to be able to fully replace the likes of a Thunderbolt hub for more demanding use cases, but I do have to say it’s quite ideal for some more everyday.
Everything this time around arrives in true Satechi style, which is to say that you can expect the usual aluminum design. It’s always a nice touch for blending in with your Apple setup, and in this case, the Pro Hub Max actually comes in one of two different colorways. There are both Silver and Space Gray styles, further doubling down on the made for M1 Pro design cues.
As far as the actual connection goes, the 8-in-2 design is quite stable and feels very sturdy when plugged into my machine. I’ve used the Satechi Pro Hub Max with my 14-inch M1 Pro MacBook Pro both at and away from the desk, and haven’t had any issues with it resting on my lap or any other uneven surface for that matter. I also really enjoy that the design still lets you take full advantage of the MagSafe features on Apple’s latest. Even if there is the 96W passthrough, Satechi shows that it has gone the extra mile to make sure the hub plays nicely with your kit.
The most apparent use case for me is going to be throwing in your everyday carry so that you’re always covered on-the-go. The eight different ports pretty much give you everything you’ll need in any situation, be it hooking up to an external display with a 4K 60Hz output or plugging in SD cards from your camera, an old school USB flash drive, or hardwired internet.
Then there’s the more permanent fixture application, which Satechi has certainly prepared the Pro Hub Max to excel at. Alongside just throwing it in a bag, keeping several of the ports occupied is a great way to keep your workstation streamlined. It won’t be convenient as a 1-cable setup, but being able to just attach the hub onto my machine at the desk and bring HDMI, Ethernet, power, and connected storage all at once worth writing home about nonetheless.
Clocking in with a $100 price tag, there is definitely a lot to like about the Satechi Pro Hub Max. Build quality is right on par with the machines you’ll be pairing it with, and the array of ports is pretty solid, too. If you’re in the market for one of these direct connect hubs, I can easily recommend the adapter, especially if being able to take advantage of USB 4 is a must. Most other options out there will mean you’re giving up the faster USB-C spec with these kinds of form-factors, but Satechi manages to deliver while still packing in all of the other ports you could want.
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