After spending 20 hours testing 22 USB-C hubs and five USB-C docks, we think Vava’s VA-UC006 USB-C Hub is the best option for connecting older peripherals and external storage devices to a new laptop or MacBook. It has an ideal range of ports that all transfer data at full speed, it’s sturdily built, it’s small and light enough to throw in a bag, and it’s reasonably priced.
A portable hub with every port you’re likely to need: three USB 3.0, HDMI, Ethernet, USB-C power passthrough, and both SD and microSD card readers.$60 from Amazon
With three USB-A ports plus HDMI (with 4K support), Ethernet, SD, microSD, and power passthrough, the Vava VA-UC006 offers the connectors most people need most of the time. It’s powerful enough to leave at your desk full-time as a docking station but small enough to slip in your laptop bag and use on the go. The only downside is that the Ethernet port hinges open, a design that saves space but is more likely to break than a standard Ethernet port.
A little longer than our main pick but about two-thirds the price, this hub has three USB 3.0 ports, HDMI, an SD card slot, and USB-C power passthrough, but no Ethernet port or microSD card reader.$40 from Amazon
HooToo’s USB-C Hub HT-UC001 offers similar performance to the Vava for about two-thirds the price, but it lacks a microSD card reader and an Ethernet port. We think the Vava’s more versatile port selection and slightly smaller size are worth paying for, but the HooToo is a good option if you need something less expensive.
This model offers four USB-A ports in a compact design, at an affordable price.$15 from Amazon
If you just need more USB 3.0 ports for flash drives, keyboards, mice, and other low-power accessories, Aukey’s USB C to 4-Port USB 3.1 Gen 1 Hub (CB-C64) is the best option we tested, and the least expensive. It’s a straightforward plastic adapter with four full-speed USB 3.0 ports. But its lack of passthrough power makes it a poor choice if your computer has only one or two USB-C ports, as the MacBook does.
Every Ethernet adapter we’ve tested works just as well, but this one is the least expensive option, and it’s from a reputable company.$16* from Amazon
*At the time of publishing, the price was $15.
If you need only an Ethernet connection, we like the Cable Matters USB Type-C to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter. It delivers full Gigabit speed, it comes from a reputable company, and it’s inexpensive. It did get warm when we used it, which is to be expected with USB-C Ethernet adapters, but it reached the same temperature as a more expensive model we tested.
*At the time of publishing, the price was $140.
Docks are larger and usually equipped with more ports than hubs, and they can provide power on their own, making them a better fit if you’re looking for something to set on your desk permanently. Among the five USB-C docks we tested, Dell’s D6000 Universal Dock is the best, with four USB-A ports, a USB-C port, HDMI and two DisplayPort video ports, Gigabit Ethernet, and a 3.5 mm audio connector. It worked equally well with a PC and a Mac in our testing. It also delivers 65 watts—the most charging power of any dock we measured—and it’s the least expensive dock option (though it’s still more than twice as expensive as the Vava hub).
Our picks’ ports compared
|Name||USB ports||Video ports||Card reader||Ethernet||Audio||Charging|
|Vava VA-UC006||USB-A (three), USB-C (one, charge only)||HDMI (one)||SD, microSD||Gigabit||–||Yes (requires laptop’s charger)|
|HooToo HT-UC001||USB-A (three)||HDMI (one)||SD||Gigabit||–||Yes (requires laptop’s charger)|
|Aukey CB-C64||USB-A (four)||–||–||–||–||–|
|Dell D6000||USB-A (four), USB-C (one)||HDMI (one), DisplayPort (two)||–||Gigabit||3.5 mm in/out (one), 3.5 mm out (one)||Yes (charger included)|
|Cable Matters USB Type-C to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter||–||–||–||Gigabit||–|