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> Ugreen X-Kit Laptop Stand Docking Station, Foldable 5-in-1 USB-C Hub | 4K@30Hz HDMI (Review)

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TSvoncrane
post Nov 7 2021, 11:31 PM, updated 8 months ago

Noir et fier!
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Senior Member
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From: Wakanda


Hi all, I hope we are all staying safe out there in these times...Apologies for the break. I've just been doing a lot of adulting IRL and was unwell for a bit. But I'm back and will resume pumping out my reviews. To those who have waited....Thanks... and for those first discovering me? Welcome...Welcome to my corner. Hope you leave more informed than you arrived. sweat.gif This time I review the Ugreen X-Kit Laptop Stand Docking Station with the model number CM359. A device that is being marketed primarily as a laptop stand. But as you’ll see….It is actually a high-performance 5-in-1 USB-C hub for multiple devices….that just happens to also be an ultra-lightweight adjustable laptop stand.

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Ugreen ran a hugely successful Indiegogo campaign for this device around December last year, claiming this to be the world’s first ergonomic foldable hub-stand. I made an exploratory post about it back then. Now I’m fairly certain that some of you may have rolleyes.gif then or currently are, reading the words “World’s First”… I mean, surely there have been laptop stands before the X-Kit, and some of them were even foldable to some extent. However, what most of em didn't have and the keywords to take note of regarding the X-Kit are “ergonomic, foldable, & hub-stand”.

Specifications
SKU: 80551
Input: 1 x USB-C data (5Gb/s), DP1.2a, HDCP2.2 with a 50cm C to C cable
*Output:
***2x USB-A 3.0 Gen1 (5Gb/s), downward compatible with USB 2.0/1.1
***4K*2K@30Hz HDMI supporting 3D
***SD (UHS-1 104MB/s), SD 3.0 protocol
***TF (UHS-1 104MB/s), SD 3.0 protocol
Dimension: 254mm x 56mm x 18.6mm
Weight: 282.9g / 9.98 oz / 0.62 lb.
Weight Capacity: 5kg
Enclosure: Aluminum alloy / PC+ABS / Silicone
Color: Obsidian
Operating Temperature: Surface lower than 42℃ under 25℃ environment
Working Temperature: ~10~+60℃
Supportive Systems: Windows 10/8.1/8/7/Vista/XP; MAC OS; linux; IOS; Android
Short-circuit Protection: Supported
Over-current Protection: Supported
Standby Current: 196mA
Operating Current: HDMI:332mA;
USB 3.0 flash disk:430mA;
SD:270mA;
Maximum current with above all connected: 566mA
*Box Contents:
***1x User Manual
***1X Carry Flannel Bag
***1x X-kit laptop stand docking station
***1x 50cm USB-c to Usb type-c charging cable

Actual Product Images
» Click to show Spoiler - click again to hide... «

To those already nodding off to this "unbelievable" wall of text...Here lies my full video review and demo of this Ugreen X-Kit Hub-Stand. I show off the build designs & the various differences in angles better...Plus, there is a bunch of stuff I try to describe in this text review that is simply so much easier to follow & or comprehend with a video. Got an easter egg inside also... Still a noob, so be gentle.. sweat.gif


For text lovers who just want a "less in-depth analysis"? Let's chug on smile.gif ...

Right off the bat, I'd like to point out that this is Ugreen’s first foray into this particular market and as such I expect there to be some cons which I’ll point out as we go on, but then, there are also some really strong pros that could very well make this the best buy for you at the moment. Especially with the much-awaited 11.11 sales right around the corner. Let's begin with the box, it is well made and the chosen fonts & colors allow for easy reading. I also like how there’s a magnetic latch and the clear “Open” labeling on the front. This intuitively shows how to open it up the right way. Unboxing reveals the X-Kit itself, a flannel bag, the multilingual user manual, and a 50cm USB-C to USB-C cable. I’m unsure what color this flannel bag is, but it’s definitely not black or just grey. I appreciate the inclusion of a carry bag that fits the X-Kit and allows for easy portability and for storage later. You can check out my review video for how well the bag fits and or how it looks like. Perhaps, share your thoughts on what color it is?..Thanks.

Moving on to the Build Quality…. The X-Kit is made from three primary materials...
1. PC-ABS - which stands for Polycarbonate/acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene. Basically, PC-ABS plastic blends the best features of polycarbonate and ABS material, combining the heat resistance of PC and the flexural strength of ABS. As a result, PC-ABS advantages include one of the highest impact strengths of any FDM thermoplastic. It’s perfect for functional prototyping, rugged tooling, and production parts in devices such as the X-Kit.
2. Aircraft-grade 6063 T5 aluminum alloy - This shell provides durability, high corrosion resistance, and because Ugreen employed a sandblasting-oxidation process, the X-Kit has this smooth & fine finish with a metallic tint that does not collect fingerprints.
3. Silicone - Ugreen generously used this along the placing shelves on the top, the protective hooks below, and at four points underneath the “Base Bar”. All working together to keep your laptop and or the X-Kit from sliding around when bumped, and also prevent the aluminum arms at the bottom from scratching your precious device.
» Click to show Spoiler - click again to hide... «

At this point, I’d like to also point out that the X-Kit in its entirety is made out of recyclable materials, making it environmentally friendly, and in keeping with Ugreen’s promise to promote green sustainable living. I give them major props for this.
» Click to show Spoiler - click again to hide... «

Design Impressions
The minimal X-shaped skeleton design makes this a breeze to whip out of its pouch, extend, and fold back. It’s portable and can go anywhere your laptop goes. Allowing you the flexibility to work either sitting or standing. This is a good thing, seeing as some of us have been forced to or are willingly working from home due to the current pandemic. My heart continues to go out to everyone dealing with this and or have lost someone. Stay safe everyone... The X-Kit can also be adjusted between four different angles. The shallowest is 15 degrees, which is nearly flat. This is useful for situations where you’re sitting or standing and typing on a low surface like a table. It allows for more comfortable notetaking or drawing especially with tablets. I showcase this in my review video. Bonus for you, you get to see lowyat.net's very own Picasso at work.. blush.gif

At 25 degrees, the keyboard is noticeably steeper. This is ideal for an ergonomic typing angle on an ordinary desk. At 30 and 33 degrees, you’ll have more comfortable angles for reading, or for working with an external monitor. You’ll be able to lean your laptop screen sometimes all the way back for a better view. Unless your screen weighs a ton in comparison to the base and or hinges are shot, your laptop should not tip over while using the X-Kit. The protective hooks at the end here do help with that. Although, I have read of some users complaining about it being too extended. Mainly because it digs into their wrists during usage. I can see that happening for some people even though I didn’t experience it myself. Guess I’ll just chalk it up to the positioning of one’s hands and the device being used. Just something to take note of though.

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All the ports are located on the left side, so hopefully, your laptop has a compatible USB-C port on the left side too for the cleanest look. Ports include full-sized SD & TF slots, an HDMI port that supports 3D video, and maxes out at proper 4K UHD@30hz. It also sports two USB-A 3.0 Gen1 ports capable of up to 5gbps transfer speeds. But of course, your mileage will vary, as attaining such speeds also depend on your connected device's specs & the type of USB hard drives used. "Theoretically", you could transmit a 1GB file in just 3 seconds!! Lastly, we have a single USB-C data port. This is the port you must use to connect your device, before attaching other peripherals such as hard drives, keyboards, mice, HDMI displays, drawing pads, USB fans, printers, your micro-SD using an SD adapter, and TF cards....etc..

While it may not be a big deal if your Laptop’s only USB-C port is on the right side. It is a kind of a big deal when your laptop has only one USB-C port. Because this is Ugreen’s first-gen product and this was designed purely with portability in mind and to be used as a standalone hub-stand. So there’s no PD fast charging support and all power to drive the port and its connected devices MUST come from your connected laptop or compatible device. Yeah, that’s a bummer and something I’ve already pointed out to Ugreen. They replied that they’ll take this into consideration for future product planning. On the plus side, the X-Kit has very good power management. It saves energy by consuming less power than a 1W LED lamp even with a working HDMI port. You can use it with a MacBook Pro for about 11 hours, even with a wireless mouse and keyboard connected. So, okay la.. quite good for a non-PD laptop hub-stand.

Safety & Security
The X-Kit is one of the safer stands on the market. With its lightweight design, it only touches the bare minimum of your laptop’s surface. In other words, even under a full load, you don’t have to worry about your device overheating, as there is plenty of airflow on all sides. As for sturdiness, once it’s locked into place, it will support pretty much any laptop in the market. Provided you don’t exceed that 5kg weight capacity limit.

» Click to show Spoiler - click again to hide... «

I tested the X-Kit’s sturdiness & stability with the 13” MacBook Air & a 15.6” Acer V-Nitro laptop. The V-Nitro is the heaviest…weighing about 2.2kg or 79oz. While the MacBook Air with its protective casing weighs around 1.6kg or about 56oz. I found it had no issues supporting either weight at full screen reclines and also with or without protective casings on. The X-Kit is equally safe for your laptop as well as connected peripherals. It has built-in short-circuit and overcurrent protection. This will shut down a connection if there’s a faulty wire or a power surge. Since it’s a non-PD charging hub, the latter shouldn’t be much of a concern. But if anything does go haywire with say your laptop battery, the X-Kit will prevent it from damaging connected peripherals. The lab temperature rise test shows that after 2 hours of full-load working, the maximum product surface temperature is about 41.9℃ (107.42℉) and 10℃ (50℉)..which is lower than the average hubs on the market.

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So that’s basically the rundown on what the X-Kit is mostly about and how you can use it to make your laptop usage life easier. The way the X-Kit is being marketed; one would be right in thinking it can only be used with laptops that have a compatible USB-C port. However, you can still use it with laptops that only possess USB-A ports and no Type-C ports. Nevertheless, do expect a drop in performance, transfer speeds, and features. Most notably is the video out feature won’t work. But everything else does work. So, it can still be used as a hub-stand for non-USB-C equipped laptops. Another pleasant surprise was finding out that the X-Kit does indeed support mobile phones and Samsung DeX running off the Samsung Galaxy Note 9….and that everything works!! I wanted to test if it’ll still work under a full load. Primarily because the phone has to supply all the power needed. So I plugged in a memory card, HDMI out to a 4K monitor, the unifying USB receiver to my Logitech MK850 Performance keyboard and mouse combo, and lastly, connected my game controller of choice. Right off the bat, all connected peripherals were instantly recognized and worked great. Feel free to check out the video review to see all these in action.

Conclusion
To wrap things up, let's talk about those pros and cons I spoke of earlier, and why this might be the Laptop Hub-Stand for you. Basically, the top three things I love & dislike the most about this Ugreen X-Kit. Much thanks for reading & sticking with me till this point. If you haven’t yet subscribed to my Youtube channel, please do so.. notworthy.gif . I do thank you and really appreciate your support. And don’t forget to tap/click the bell icon if you’d like to get notified when I drop new videos.

Let’s begin with the cons,
1. No PD Fast Charging Support - As I mentioned earlier, this is Ugreen’s first-gen product and this was designed purely with portability in mind and to be used as a standalone hub-stand. So there’s no PD fast charging support and all power to drive the port and its connected devices MUST come from your connected laptop or compatible device.
2. Nay to Monster-Sized Laptops - This might not offer the best support for extra-large & heavy laptops. Typically the really heavy 17”++ (above 5KG) laptops. Such as the Acer Predator 21 X. How do I say this pleasantly enough, your 18.6 pound or 8.5kg laptop is heavier than 6 MacBook Pros!!...Anything between the typical 10 – 16” laptops should be fine, and this includes the latest Apple MacBook Pro 16".
3. No RJ-45 Port/Hub Registering as a USB 2.0 Device - The last con is also port-related and is in 2 parts. One is the absence of an RJ-45 or Ethernet port, which should come in handy for those with laptops without such. You know for that really no other hub or adapter needed vibe. Take the latest Apple Macbook Pros, although shame on Apple for "forgetting" to include one too.. Oh well....smile.gif.. Alternatively, you could just use the UGREEN Premium 7-in-1 USB-C Hub, USB-C Multifunctional Adapter, or something more dedicated just for that. The second part to this con is.. I connected my Acer laptop via a USB 3.0 type A port and on screen, it shows the entire hub-stand as a USB 2.0 device. I initially chalked it up to not using a compatible USB-C port. However, I checked around online and found that the reviewers at Notebook Check.net also experienced the same issue while connected to the USB-C port on the Razer Blade Stealth gaming ultrabook. Leading me to wonder….why???….Thankfully, this doesn’t seriously hamper the transfer speeds as one can still achieve real-world transfer speeds of around 150MB/s.

» Click to show Spoiler - click again to hide... «

Moving on to the Pros,
1. Form Factor - The minimal X-shaped skeleton design makes this a breeze to whip out of its pouch, extend, and fold back. It’s portable and can go anywhere your laptop goes. Allowing you the flexibility to work either sitting or standing.
2. Build Quality - Build Quality is quite decent for an inexpensive first-gen product. I particularly love that the materials are environmentally friendly without losing the durability and heat-resistance properties expected by us consumers.
3. Ergonomic Design - With four adjustable angles, one is able to find the best ergonomic posture, reducing or eliminating fatigue of your neck, arms, wrists, and or eyes.

I'd like to thank UGREEN for supplying a review unit to make this possible... cool.gif Lastly, I welcome comments, be it encouragement and or questions about the UGREEN X-Kit Laptop Stand Docking Station. Remember to stay safe during this period. Thanks once again & have a great day or evening..

Purchase Links
Official Website
Shopee Malaysia
Lazada Malaysia

UGREEN SocMed URLs
Twitter
Facebook (Malaysia)
Instagram

This post has been edited by voncrane: Nov 9 2021, 09:25 AM
blurjoey
post Nov 8 2021, 09:41 AM

Sumo Hammy!
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Joined: Jan 2003
From: Cheras, Kuala Lumpur


Welcome back laugh.gif

I bought mine during Kickstarter but yours looks like black in color?

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TSvoncrane
post Nov 9 2021, 09:29 AM

Noir et fier!
*******
Senior Member
7,058 posts

Joined: Oct 2011
From: Wakanda


QUOTE(blurjoey @ Nov 8 2021, 09:41 AM)
Welcome back  laugh.gif

I bought mine during Kickstarter but yours looks like black in color?

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*
Yasss... Thanks for holding the fort while I was away.. tongue.gif

Interesting, yours is definitely browner than mine. Even the color ascents along the vertical holes where the hinges rolls up and down isn't as dark as mine. Guess, your color is a perk of being an early adopter. now all mass-produced in obsidian. Did some light reading about the color "obsidian" and found this that might explain why yours looks like that and mine as is.

"Though obsidian is typically jet-black in color, the presence of hematite (iron oxide) produces red and brown varieties, and the inclusion of tiny gas bubbles may create a golden sheen. Other types with dark bands or mottling in gray, green, or yellow are also known."

 

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