Take back control of your Mac’s ports with the Elago Multi Hub USB-C that allows you to once again use every peripheral in your house.
When the new MacBook came out everybody was surprised of the switch to USB-C ports only and felt that it just made everything else you own obsolete. Apple does offer dongles that give back that practicality but they are limited in offerings and expensive. If you can’t let go of the “old” technology than you need to get an Elago Multi Hub USB-C. It uses only one port and expands it to include charging, SD cards, Micro SD cards, and two “old” USB 3 connectivity.
Elago started in 2002 as a professional design company with one objective in mind: Simple Sophistication. They live to create accessories for your devices. Starting with cases, stands, headphones and ending with mousepads cable management and travel adapters. You name it! They have it in more than one color to match your needs.
Being someone who owns the 2016 MacBook, the lack of regular USB’s is felt every day. Sure most of the peripherals work on Bluetooth these days but what about the rest of the essentials like USB keys, and HDMI for the TV, or your existing Apple Cinema Display. Might as well sell all that or get an adaptor for each one.
Seeing that there is a better, more compact solution to this problem, we wanted to improve the experience by using the Multi Hub. We teamed up with the guys at Elago to bring you a review of their Aluminum Charging Multi Hub USB-C in Silver where we will take a look at the design, the performance, and the practicality.
We are also organizing a Giveaway with this product so make sure you enter for a chance to win and finally be able to use your old devices with you MacBook. The more you share, the more you increase your chances of winning. Good luck!
When designing something specifically for MacBook, the best material to go with is aluminum in order to have the same aesthetics. The Multi Hub is compact and precision made to fit all the ports that you used to have on your old laptop. Minimal printed information gives this hub and elegant look. For visual feedback that everything is working, they also included a blue LED light in the middle of the hub but not quite. Maybe moving it up next to the USB-C port would make more sense.
We like the fact that it uses aluminum and everything look and feels precision cut but it doesn’t follow the Apple design to the end. They included a micro SD slot that sits above the regular SD slot causing them to be out of alignment and quite difficult to insert or eject. If you look closely all the ports are aligned to the top which throws off the balance.
The Hub is pretty thin, making it sit flush with the laptop and not feel a bump when moving your hand over it. Unfortunately, because the device connects to your laptop through only one USB-C port, that create a little strain on the device and you will notice it going down a bit at the other end as there is nothing supporting it. Check out the video above to see the little issues we found in the design although you may not even notice them.
Elago Multi Hub is very compact at just 84 x 27 mm and weighs just 25g so you got to be careful not to loose it. This hub can handle 5 things at once like power your mac through the USB-C port, read both SD and MicroSD cards as well as handle two USB 3 connections at the same time.
Staying true to the Apple design, the packaging is simple and concise with enough information about the product and a transparent cutout that reveals the actual product. Opening the box reveals a simple plastic mold that holds the Multi Hub. This means that from the start, the consumers gets what he sees and because the intended use of the product is so easy to understand, it doesn’t need any instructions.
The need for this type of device is real and many users should benefit from it. Wanting to see how it performs we put this little hub through its paces. We tested it through several scenarios and found some interesting results. Starting with the benefits that the Elago Multi Hub provides we have to agree that its a life savior.
It only takes up one of your USB-C ports and it gives you five other ports in return. You can’t beat the cool feel of the aluminum enclosure and the fact that you can match it to the color of your laptop. The ability to charge and transfer files at the same time is definitely a plus. This can help you continue to use your existing peripherals and storage solutions.
But as with everything, there has to be some drawbacks like the port alignment and LED placement decisions that could’ve been improved. Another thing is the fragility of the USB-C connector wich forces you to be careful not to move it or bend it as to put stress on the metal and cause damage not only to the hub but to the laptop itself. This also means you can’t use it with a laptop case as the hub can’t be attached properly. We would love to trade one of the USB 3.0 ports for an HDMI port for our Cinema Display which in turn can act as a USB hub.
Although they state on the product page that the hub can handle all the ports and charge at the same time, in our tests we found out that the transfer rate drops when using both USB 3.0 ports causing our mouse to lag a bit and external drives to take longer to transfer files. So you do have some setback when plugging everything you own in this hub.
So, in short, the Elago Multi Hub is a great buy at just $43.49 and for the time being, it does provide you with the essentials to get you through the slow transition to USB-C. For more information about the Multi Hub and the rest of the awesome products from Elago, check out their online shop and stay tuned for more awesome reviews coming soon.