Brydge ProDock evaluation: A vertical Thunderbolt 4 docking station for contemporary Macs

Brydge ProDock evaluation: A vertical Thunderbolt 4 docking station for contemporary Macs

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The brand new ProDock is Brydge’s tackle a vertical docking station that delivers the facility of Thunderbolt 4 to each MacBook Professional and MacBook Air.

After buying Henge, Brydge has continued to supply minor upgrades to its well-regarded vertical docks. With the brand new ProDock, Brydge has delivered its first significant redesign bringing new options and connectivity requirements.

The headlining options embrace Thunderbolt 4, a MagSafe-compatible charger, and help for 3 totally different Macs with a single design. Whereas vertical docks could not go well with everybody’s wants, people who want them will seemingly be pleased with what Brydge presents.

A straightforward setup

There’s some minor setup that comes with the ProDock, you possibly can’t simply open the field and immediately begin utilizing it. Certainly one of its distinguishing components is that it might help the 2021 16-inch MacBook Professional, the 2021 14-inch MacBook Professional, or the M2 MacBook Air.

Dock inserts
Dock inserts

To help these totally different machines, it ships with three plastic guides — one for every measurement of Mac. Every insert information is denoted by the identify of the machine it suits within the lower-right nook.

Choose the information you want and set the others apart, simply in case you get one other mannequin. Brydge additionally offers two small hex screws and a miniature screwdriver to finish the setup.

Size switch
Dimension swap

Earlier than screwing the information into place, it is advisable set the highest swap to correspond to the proper Mac. This adjusts the place the male Thunderbolt 4 Kind-C connector aligns so it might correctly hook up with your particular Mac.

Installing the screws
Putting in the screws

Lastly, you place the information on high and tighten the 2 screws into place. It takes solely 2 to three minutes to assemble and to get began utilizing the dock together with your {hardware}.

This setup solely must be completed as soon as, however itdoes depart the chance open for Brydge to broaden compatibility sooner or later.

Relying on how the MacBook line modifications within the coming years, we will see Brydge providing extra guides to suit new machines, with out customers needing to purchase an entire new vertical docking station.

Loads of ports

The ProDock has 10 whole output ports, dispersed on three totally different sides of the gadget. There are some wins right here in addition to a couple of misses.

Left side ports
Left facet ports

On the left, we have now a USB 3.2 Gen 1 Kind-C port that’s able to 5.5W of energy and 5Gbps of knowledge. It is partnered with a full-sized SD card reader on its proper.

Right side ports
Proper facet ports

Flipping the dock round, there is a single 3.5mm audio jack. The facet placement of the cardboard reader, USB port, and headphone jack helps to maintain them available with out transferring the dock round.

Relying in your desk placement, you should still find yourself with one of many sides going through away from you and the ports nonetheless out of attain. Putting them straight on the entrance would have made them extra accessible, however the newfound wi-fi charger guidelines out that possibility.

Rear ports
Rear ports

It has three Thunderbolt 4 downstream ports and three USB 3.2 Gen 2 Kind-A ports that may ship as much as 5.5W of energy. The final port is a gigabit Ethernet port.

Brydge offers a 135W energy adapter within the field that plugs in on the again of the unit by way of a typical barrel connector. At most energy draw, the ProDock can ship 98W of energy to your Mac.

General, this can be a serviceable port choice although the pace on the facet USB-C port is disappointing. We might like to have seen a Kind-C port that would ship not less than 18W of juice reasonably than a measly 5W.

There may be additionally no MicroSD card reader, that means it is advisable hold an adapter helpful in case you use the smaller media format.

These aren’t insurmountable points because the rear-facing Thunderbolt 4 ports ship extra energy if wanted, and an adapter could be merely left in place semi-permanently. It is simply barely much less handy.

Must you purchase the Brydge ProDock?

The Brydge ProDock is a good, if area of interest, gadget. Not everybody wants a vertical docking station. They as an alternative would make the most of the display on their laptop computer alongside a secondary show.

Typically, it is extra handy to make use of simply the exterior displays. Our at present prevailing setup has our Mac closed in clamshell mode whereas utilizing a pair of exterior shows, together with Apple’s Studio Show.

Charging pad
Charging pad

The brand new charging pad is a welcome addition right here too in comparison with earlier variations. That house was largely already occupied by the bottom of the stand, and reasonably than leaving it to go unused, Brydge has made it a helpful function.

The charging puck is raised within the middle and is roofed in comfortable silicone. Elevating it permits newer telephones to sit down flat, such because the iPhone 14 Professional and its large digicam bump.

Placing phone on charger
Putting cellphone on charger

Brydge put magnets within the wi-fi charger, serving to keep correct alignment when used with an iPhone that helps MagSafe. The magnet feels a bit of weak, although it is sufficient that will help you know the place to place the cellphone.

It outputs as much as 15W of energy, although iPhones will likely be restricted to 7.5W as it is a Qi charger, not a MagSafe charger.


Brydge appears to have considered all the main points with this dock, together with small adhesive covers for the facet of your Mac to stop any scratches as you place the machine in.

Thunderbolt 4 is a strong alternative right here as nicely. The important thing distinction from Thunderbolt 3 is that it permits for a number of downstream Thunderbolt ports.

For video manufacturing, this may be essential. Thunderbolt units could be daisy chained collectively but it surely is not a good suggestion to daisy chain storage units, which video editors could want.

MacBook Air supports one external display
M2 MacBook Air helps one exterior show

We have been in a position to join a CFExpress card reader, two exterior SSDs, a big laborious drive array, and two shows throughout Thunderbolt, in addition to a couple of ancillary units when testing the Brydge ProDock.

ProDock closeup

There could also be a couple of minor grievances with the ProDock but it surely’s a well-designed accent that may assist enhance productiveness and connectivity all whereas saving house.

You may pay for the privilege although. Thunderbolt 4 equipment are nonetheless fairly costly and most strong Thunderbolt 4 docks are equally priced, coming in close to $400.


  • Compact, spacing-saving design
  • Anodized aluminum physique
  • 10 versatile ports
  • Thunderbolt 4 with a number of downstream Thunderbolt ports
  • Suits all latest moveable Macs
  • Chance to help future Macs
  • Simply-accessible wi-fi charger with magnetic alignment
  • Simple insertion and elimination


  • Gradual charging speeds on facet USB port
  • Rising tech is not the most cost effective
  • Not actual MagSafe charger

Score: 4 out of 5

The place to purchase

You possibly can preorder the Brydge ProDock Thunderbolt 4 docking station straight from Brydge for $399 with transport starting in late January.

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