Road Test: Henge­docks

Finweek English Edition - - NEWS - Si­mon mon Din­gle si­mond@fin­

Lap­top com­put­ers are so much more than just a work sta­tion. It’s now where many peo­ple con­sume tele­vi­sion, speak to dis­tant rel­a­tives, record mem­o­ries and play games. And yes, some of us even work on our lap­tops. Given the cen­tral role th­ese de­vices play in so many peo­ple’s lives, they need a place on the desk, in the lounge and just about every­where else. Henge­docks is an un­usual prod­uct that gives you some­where to pop your lap­top in the places where it hangs out reg­u­larly. So long as it’s a Mac.

The premise is sim­ple – you have a mon­i­tor, net­work ca­ble, key­board, mouse, power adapter and maybe even sound and ex­ter­nal stor­age leads that you have to con­nect to your lap­top when you ar­rive at work, or a sim­i­lar oc­to­pus of ca­bles that it con­nects to in your lounge or home of­fice. Henge­docks gets all the ca­bles sorted out neatly so that you can plonk down your lap­top and get to work, much like with the dock­ing sta­tions that have been com­mon in the PC lap­top mar­ket for years.

The lap­top it­self is mounted closed and on its side, stick­ing up in the air. This is one down­side of the Henge­dock as it de­prives you of us­ing the screen on your lap­top as a sec­ondary dis­play, as I do at work. It makes per­fect sense in the lounge, how­ever, if you’re con­nect­ing the lap­top to a tele­vi­sion or other big mon­i­tor and don’t re­quire the ad­di­tional ddi­tional screen.

The Henge­dock gedock we were sent for test­ing is for my 13” MacBook Pro. Set­ting it up re­lies on gath­er­ing to­gether ether all the ca­bles you need con­nected to o your com­puter, most of which you’ll find ind in­cluded in the box, and insert­ing them hem through holes in the dock and then plug­ging ug­ging them into your com­puter. With ev­ery­thing very­thing in place, you then use in­cluded screws to se­cure the jacks.

Once all this is done you sim­ply in­sert or yank out the lap­top as needed ded – but you do need to be care­ful not to do o so at an an­gle, which could dam­age your r con­nec­tors. It also re­quires you to hold down own the dock with one hand, which makes es ex­tract­ing your lap­top some­thing that needs get­ting used to.

The Henge­dock didn’t quite uite work for me as a so­lu­tion on my desk at work, but I love hav­ing it con­nected to my home theatre sys­tem for con­nect­ing g my Mac in the lounge. There is a bracket, et, sold sep­a­rately, that al­lows you to clip in a wire­less Ap­ple key­board and Magic c Track­pad, mak­ing them more lounge-friendly riendly too.

In the right spot, the Henge­dock gedock is a de­light – es­pe­cially if you have ex­ter­nal hard drives and other bits that need plug­ging in be­fore you u can get on with things on your Mac.

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