Laptops are becoming slimmer, smarter, and lighter. But, the number of ports is being compromised. Earlier, desktops and laptops used to have 4 ports but these days, they just have two. The recent Apple Macbook has only one!
So, how do you plug in your mouse, keyboard, webcam, printer, pendrive, SD card reader, and your phone’s charger?
That’s where USB hubs can help. These are pretty inexpensive laptop/computer accessories and yet, they can help you add as many as 13 USB devices (the number would have increased by the time you read the article).
In this blog, we will brief you about one such product, the Sabrent 4-port USB 3.0 hub. As obvious from its name, it has 4 ports and can support almost all types of devices.
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Name: Sabrent 4-port USB 3.0 hub
Features: has 4 3.0 ports, backward compatible, doesn’t support charging
Pros: Lightweight, portable, inexpensive, has separate switch for each of its port
Cons: short cable, can move or flip easily
Our rating: 4/5
Full Written Review:
Design and build
It is a pretty simple device. You don’t need to download or install an app. Just plug it and it will be ready to use.
The 2 ft cable is decent for most of us for creating a convenient setup but some buyers found it very short (especially if you are using a desktop), leaving you with limited space to place the unit.
Some buyers have also complained that this product is lightweight and pretty much trips or falls over or slips away when you try to plug in the cables. You can add a piece of double-sided tape at the base to keep it stable.
What we love the most about the Sabrent 4-port USB 3.0 hub is that it has a compact profile, so you can easily carry it in your handbag or laptop bag. There are individual switches for each port, so you can turn them on/off as and when needed. The push buttons feel flimsy but they aren’t a dealbreaker. The LED indicators help you figure out the active/working ports.
This USB hub is suitable only for data transfer. It doesn’t support charging. If you need something that lets you charge your devices too, you can go for Sabrent 60W 10-Port USB 3.0 Hub which comes with 3 charging ports. Equipped with smart charging technology, this USB hub lets you charge your phone, tablet, and other devices.
All the Sabrent USB hubs are backward compatible with USB 2.0 and USB 1.1 devices, so you will be able to use it with almost all types of hardware for data transfer with minimum issues. The transfer speed for this specific product is up to 5Gbps (USB 3.0), 480Mbps (USB 2.0), and 12Mbps (USB 1.1).
Please note that unlike other Sabrent USB hubs many other hubs, you can’t add external power to it. This means, your laptop/desktop will be powering all the devices that you will be plugging in. If you are using basic input devices such as wireless mouse or keyboard, you need not worry about battery consumption. But, power-hungry devices such as hard drives and speakers can quickly drain your laptop’s battery.
If you are into a profession that requires you to use too many multimedia devices or high power consuming devices, we would recommend Atolla 7-Port USB Data Hub Splitter with One Smart Charging Port. It comes with external power supply, so you don’t have to worry about battery issues.
- Its low price is its biggest selling point.
- Portable and lightweight.
- The individual switches of the ports help minimize battery drainage or disconnect devices without physically removing them.
- Being a plug and play device, Sabrent 4-port USB 3.0 hub is pretty easy to use.
- The ports are placed rather too closely. You have to literally squeeze in all four devices. They might sit a bit oddly but they will work.
- Being lightweight, it moves far too easily. You will have to hold it while adding or removing the devices.
- Some buyers have stated that the cable is shorter than 2’. That’s true, ours measure around 19”. Well, the Sabrent 4-port USB 3.0 hub is basically a grab and go port hub, so 2’ cable is decent but if you intend to use it for creating a fully-functional workspace by attaching your printer, webcam, and numerous other devices, you might want to consider the 10-port hub which comes with 6.5 ft cable.
Our Rating: 4 out of 5
We have been using it for weeks now. There are a few flaws but none of them are deal-breakers. Overall, a good quality product available at such a low price range. Highly recommended for on-the-go people.