Satechi's Thunderbolt 4 Dock provides a multitude of ports, including three Thunderbolt 4 ports, four USB-A ports, Gigabit Ethernet, a UHS-II card reader, and a 3.5mm audio jack, to increase your Mac setup's versatility for a price of $299.

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Thunderbolt allows data transfer from all of the ports to take place through a single cable connected to your host device. While not all Macs have a Thunderbolt 4 port, Thunderbolt 4 is backwards compatible, meaning that most Mac models since 2016 should work with Satechi's Thunderbolt 4 Dock, as well as the latest iPad Pro models. The dock comes with a U.S. power adapter and a short Thunderbolt 4 cable. Many competitors are still using Thunderbolt 3, so Satechi's Thunderbolt 4 dock is a great way to get the latest specification.

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The dock features a compact, premium look with a sleek aluminum enclosure. It has a tapered design, with recesses on either side housing glossy black plastic with cutouts for the various ports. Though it's a minor concern, I did find the protective film on the glossy plastic difficult to remove since it is recessed so deeply inside the enclosure.

Rubber feet on the underside of the dock stop it from sliding around on surfaces and the overall design feels solid and sturdy. The anodized aluminum finish closely matches Apple's Space Gray, which is perfect for having a consistent-looking setup providing that is your Apple device color of choice, but I wish Satechi would offer a silver option too.

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The Thunderbolt 4 Dock is a "plug and play" device, not requiring any additional software or drivers. It features a single Thunderbolt 4 host port that should be connected directly to your Mac or ‌iPad Pro‌. Simply connect the dock to power and hook a Thunderbolt cable up from the host device Thunderbolt port to a port on your Mac, and you're ready to go.

In my experience, the dock is easiest to set up with a single, all-in-one Mac like a MacBook Pro or an iMac. When you want to use an external display, things have to be thought through a little more carefully. My LG UltraFine Thunderbolt display did not seem to work when connected to one of the three non-host Thunderbolt 4 ports, meaning I had to connect any displays I wanted to use directly to my Mac. Satechi claims that the dock supports dual 4K HDMI output up to 60Hz, so I believe this is just an issue with my LG UltraFine display, rather than a reflection on Satechi's dock.

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You can connect up to three USB-C devices to the dock's Thunderbolt 4 ports, with support for 40 Gbps data transfer and 15W charging on each port. The three USB-A 3.2 data ports are ideal for fast data transfers and backups with transfer speeds up to 10 Gbps. When I maxed out the ports with devices like external hard drives, some accessories seemed to be drawing too much power and triggering a warning in macOS, but generally the dock seems to handle lots of devices very well. The single USB-A charging port can be used to power or charge a device with up to 7.5W of power, and there is also a Gigabit Ethernet port and a UHS-II card reader slot, all of which seem to work perfectly.

Overall, Satechi's Thunderbolt 4 Dock provides a great way to simplify cable management, particularly for MacBooks, and expand your Mac's selection of ports in more demanding setups and with a single, fast, reliable connection.

How to Buy

The Satechi Thunderbolt 4 Dock is available from Satechi's website. Note that it only comes with a U.S. power adapter.

Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner of Satechi. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. Satechi provided MacRumors with a Thunderbolt 4 Dock for the purpose of this review. No other compensation was received.

Top Rated Comments

ProfessionalFan Avatar
22 months ago

Most of the pathetic US ISP can barely hit 300 (even that’s a big stretch to say). What’s the point of 2.5?

I don’t see the need as of this point. Maybe if all the ISP actually manage to offer 2Gbits internet then it might be useful.

Unless you are taking about a
Local networking can take advantage of it even if your ISP can’t. Internal file transfers are important as well.
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
danieldk Avatar
22 months ago

First of all Gigabit Ethernet doesn’t cut it these days for a desktop hub.
Even worse, looking at the vendor ID, this appears to be a Realtek RTL8153 ethernet NIC. Often these only reach 750MBit/s to 900MBit/s in practice and put a lot of load on a CPU core, because they use the ancient USB CDC-ECM class ('https://gist.github.com/MadLittleMods/3005bb13f7e7178e1eaa9f054cc547b0?permalink_comment_id=4029149').

To add to the fun, docks with RTL8153 are known to take down routers/switches when they are attached to the network without a computer attached.

Unfortunately, many reviews of docks fail to mention such issues, since they do not test the docks for prolonged times under different circumstances (e.g. CDC-ECM CPU load is not going to be an issue if you are on 50MBit/s upstream).

At any rate, always buy a Thunderbolt Dock with e.g. an Intel I210/I225 attached to the PCIe express bus (which is tunneled through Thunderbolt). Not only will you have a proper NIC with offloading that doesn't peg a CPU core and will reach 1Gbit without issues. If the vendor was too cheap to use a proper PCIe NIC, then usually the other functionality of the dock also uses subpar components.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jlc1978 Avatar
22 months ago

I clearly don’t see the value of these things.
It depends on your use case. I find one useful because I can:
1. Connect to my router via ethernet
2 Have my Time Machine drive connected
3. Attach a second monitor
4. Charge my iPhone
5. Charge my MBP

all via 1 cable attachment to the MBP.
YMMV
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jck1634 Avatar
22 months ago
This dock, the one from Razor, OWC, Kensington, are all essentially the same dock. They're all equally bad
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ikir Avatar
22 months ago
It would be better to have 2,5/5/10 Gbit ethernet than so much USB at 10GB's speed that can be already achieved by Thunderbolt ports.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Trey M Avatar
22 months ago
I had this Satechi TB4 dock and recently returned it primarily due to 2 issues:

1) The dock lacked consistency waking my 14” MBP and connected accessories. Sometimes it’d work fine, other times the MacBook would not be able to be woken without physically disconnecting and reconnecting the TB4 port. The only workaround for this was to change settings when connected to a power adapter to disallow the computer sleeping, which is a big waste of power and an ugly workaround. One of the big theoretical improvements from TB3 > TB4 was supposed to be around this sleep/wake behavior inconsistency, but it seems it remains unresolved with this Satechi unit and possibly others using the same reference design.

2) The front facing host TB4 port. I obviously knew about this going in but it bothered me more than I imagined when it was deployed on my desk

I instead opted for the pricier Caldigit TS4 and I’m VERY pleased with my decision to go with Caldigit. More ports, 2.5GB Ethernet for future proofing, dedicated DisplayPort, rear host TB4 and sleeker design all highlight the experience. For full disclosure, early units of the TS4 suffered from similar sleep/wake issues similar to the the Satechi issues mentioned above, however the Caldigit unit I received was released in the latest batch and includes a firmware update which did rectify this errant behavior. I never personally experienced this issue since it was resolved in firmware by the time I received the unit.

In several weeks working from home, I haven’t encountered any sleep or other related issues with the TS4. It just works and I have the unit fairly maxed out (all 3 TB ports utilized, Ethernet connected, etc). I’ve tested the dock via SpeedTest app and it consistently clocks around 850-950mbps download on a 1G Att fiber subscription. Many other docks seem to cap around 700-800 even though it’s a 1G port. There is some truth to the post above about the Realtek RTL8153 NIC; it and similar NICs have a ton of complaints online.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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