The Mini DisplayPort shares the Thunderbolt 3 bus and allows a second display to be connected, while the 3.5mm audio in/out port allows external speakers, mics, and other audio equipment to be connected. Pro-grade digital audio output for a lossless signal transfer is accomplished using the S/PDIF output, network connectivity is achieved using the Gigabit Ethernet port, and the integrated SD card reader lets you download photos and videos from your digital camera or other device.
That’s a lot of flexibility and speeds from something as unassuming as this. I’m especially surprised by the inclusion of the S/PDIF optical audio port. I doubt I’ll make use of it but including it in the dock makes clear that OWC is targeting this dock to consumers and professionals alike. Here’s a video of it in action.
When I heard I had one of the docks on the way for review, I was excited. I knew it would go a long way toward helping to turn my 13” MacBook Pro into a powerful desktop.
Before it arrived, however, I received a monitor with a built-in dock that I am also reviewing. That eliminated the need for this dock at home.
Instead, I brought it to my office at the synagogue and hooked it up to my 27” iMac.
The iMac has a decent amount of ports but adding this dock gave me a level of flexibility that is great. I am using it to connect speakers, a scanner, an external drive and more. And, thanks to its clean lines, it gives a neat, professional appearance with power to spare. At $299 this dock is a bit pricey, but it is incredibly powerful and delivers everything it promises and more. Check it out here.
Source: Company Supplied Review Sample of the OWC Thunderbolt 3 Dock
What I Like: Clean lines; Easy setup; Plenty of ports; Super-fast speeds balanced by legacy connectivity; Powers a MacBook
What Needs Improvement: Pricey but worth it if you want to turn your MacBook Pro into a desktop with little to no compromise