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Targus Tuesday made its universal docking station even more universal. The laptop luggage pioneer has unveiled a new version of the Targus USB 3.0 SuperSpeed Dual Video Docking Station, adding support for Apple MacBooks as well as Windows 7 and Windows 8 Pro laptops and tablets, physically connecting any USB 3.0-capable computing device to nearly a dozen I/O ports with a single cable.
In an exclusive opportunity, the CRN Test Center looked at the Targus USB 3.0 SuperSpeed Dual Video Docking Station with Power ahead of its general release. What we found was a solid, sturdy solution that was easy to set up and for the most part worked as advertised. The solution we tested also charges Windows mobile devices and lists for $219.99. Targus also offers a non-charging version for $169.99. Both are covered by a three-year warranty.
Aside from the utility of USB 3.0's blazing speed to move large files around, we've seen few applications of SuperSpeed's near-5 Gbps bandwidth as creative and useful as the Targus docking solution. With help from semiconductor maker DisplayLink, Targus has developed a one-cable, multimonitor answer for today's port-shy ultra-portables and tablets and gives well-connected power users a quick and easy way to hit the road and return to productivity once they return.
The Targus Docking Station provides DVI and HDMI video output ports, and both can be used simultaneously at resolutions up to 2,048 x 1,152. Also included are DVI-to-VGA and HDMI-to-DVI cable adapters, which cover most situations. There's a USB 3.0 host port and cable for connecting the laptop to the dock, plus two USB 3.0 ports for high-speed peripherals. The dock also delivers four USB 2.0 ports. Why all those legacy USB ports? Well, two can be for mouse and keyboard, and the remaining two -- which comply with the USB battery charging 1.1 spec -- are good for charging battery-operated devices such as tablets and cellphones. The dock also provides mic and headphone ports plus a Kensington lock slot. It's all powered by a 6-amp AC power adapter.