Previous 1 2 3 4 5 Next 132 Replies Latest reply: May 25, 2015 6:52 AM by Angel of D4rkness Go to original post Branched to a new discussion.
  • Doug Lerner2 Level 4 Level 4 (1,030 points)

    Where do you see January 30? I am in Tokyo, and it is currently January 29 at 5:45 PM (UTC+9 hours).

     

    I see that Plugable USB 3.0 7 port hub at Amazon here in Japan. In fact, Plugable's Japan store is Amazon. It is ¥5,300 yen which is about $51, just a couple of dollars more than the Anker hub I returned is.

     

    But the Anker hub also had one dedicated charging port. I was sort of interested in the Plugable 4 port + one charging port, but that doesn't seem to be available here.

     

    I was able to get a return number for the Anker hub, which was very unstable, and mailed it back already. I guess I could get the 7 port Plugable and use regular outlets for charging. That would be faster anyway. I could always return it I guess if it doesn't work.

     

    Thanks,

     

    doug

  • Doug Lerner2 Level 4 Level 4 (1,030 points)

    Oh, since you seem quite knowledgable in all this, do you know if attaching USB 2.0 devices (e.g. my printer and headset) to the Plugable USB 3 hub will have the effect of slowing down the whole bus to USB 2.0 speeds? I know that used to be an issue with USB 2 hubs and USB 1 devices. Is that just an old, resolved problem now?

     

    Thanks,

     

    doug

  • AWMarine Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Doug, sorry I missed your question,

     

    Regarding the Belkin Hub. I tried one last March and returned it. At the time I wrote the following review on Amazon. It's likely they've upgraded their chipset and firmware since, but I wouldn't bet on it. Regardless, the Micro-B connector; the updside down orientation of the ports; and the illogical arrangement of indicator lights would turn me off - unless they've had a major design chance. Besides, it's pricey for what you get. I definitely wouldn't buy it at Apple. It's my understanding that they only have a 14 day return policy, compared to 30 at Amazon..

     

    Amazon review:

    I have a 15" MacBook Pro with Retina Display and, like other new Mac owners with USB 3.0 ports, have had a devil of a time finding a reliable hub. I think I've tried 15 hubs now, and the Belkin was one of the worst. It was bought on the recommendation of an Apple engineer to an AppleCare senior advisor that it should be reliable. I've spent many hours with Genius' and with AppleCare with no success, or confidence that they have a solution.


    I returned the Belkin for credit based on: "Micro-B receptacle is intermittent. Drives fail to mount at times; and they spontaneously undock/ eject without provocation. Hub lights often do not indicate drive status. Hub is erratic & unreliable." The problems with the intermittent Micro-B receptacle and the lights were killers for me.


    In my experience and opinion for those Mac owners with USB 3.0, there's evidence of a major problem with Apple engineering largely ignoring the USB 3.0 problem, or at least not coming up with an effective "fix". I bought my MacBook Pro Retina last June, expecting a solid MacBook Pro. It wasn't. After 9 months one would expect Apple to be on top of this problem, or to address it with their customers.


    Many, if not all, of the USB 3.0 hubs out there will work fine with the Windows OS, but fail at a surprisingly high rate with the new Macs. Browse the Amazon reviews, and the discussions on the Apple Discussion Boards and you'll find that Apple has a problem in this area. My guess is that they're putting their resources into iPhones and iPads and letting Mac owners drift. Check the reviews - from Mac owners - and you'll see what's happening.

     

    ~

  • Doug Lerner2 Level 4 Level 4 (1,030 points)

    Thanks for your reply. Well, that's all disappointing. This is a brand new late 2013 MacBook Pro retina 13-inch. I myself would have been happy without the Thunderbolt ports and 2 extra USB 3 ports myself. It has an HDMI connector already for my external monitor. Anyway, this is what I'm stuck with. But I have 2 WD USB 3 drives for two backups (Time Machine and CCC) and need a hub. The WD drives work great when directly connected, but the WD drive was unstable when connected via the Anker hub, so I returned it. Since connected it back directly to the MBP the drive has run flawlessly.

     

    I guess I could try the Plugable...

     

    Thanks,

     

    doug

  • AWMarine Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Doug,

     

    The 30th was at the top of the message that was displayed for me to respond to. It stuck out. Since I'm responding to the "original" message from dsanc89 it's shown below mine and it has the Jan 30 date, but it's 2013. Sorry, It's late here.

     

    I have plenty of power adapters so it’s not an issue to not have one on the hub, although it could be handy. I presume that your reference to “regular outlets”  means “wall warts” and not the hub ports. The regular hub ports don’t have the current rating to be used regularly for charging.

     

    Both Anker and Plugable have strong tech support. I don’t know if the groups are international or based in the separate countries. It seems to me that I talked to an Anker tech in California, but his chain of command was Asia (China?). An email should get results, possibly an exchange from Anker. They work hard to keep Amazon happy, seriously. Sunnie assured me that they had up to date firmware, but failed to provide any data. They should make it good.

     

    There’s much USB 2.0 equipment that’s incompatible with USB 3.0 hubs. Logitech is reknowned. To solve this, I plug a USB 2.0 hub into the USB 3.0 port. That serves to isolate the two and has worked well. I’d keep them apart. I don’t think it’ll slow the USB 3.0 hub down. If that was the case, the USB 2.0 hub would have that effect.

     

    ~

  • Doug Lerner2 Level 4 Level 4 (1,030 points)

    Anker was very pleasant about it when I wrote them. But I had already sent it back to Amazon. It might have been a defective hub and not representative of the line in general, but I already had to pay the post office to send back one, and so I didn't feel like experimenting with another Anker. I did provide my Amazon order number, and they said they wanted to check it out when it was returned to them from Amazon.

     

    My headset is a Logitech. I have a USB 2.0 hub also, that I had been using with my older iMac. But if I plug it into one of the MBP's two USB 3 ports then where am I going to connect my 2nd WD drive to? The USB 2 port? That would be a waste. On the other hand, it only runs once a night, at 3:30 am to do my CCC incremental clone backup. The other WD drive - connected to the right side USB port is for Time Machine, so runs all the time.

     

    Decisions, decisions. The Canon printer is, I believe, just USB 2. So it will not be possible to separate out if I have a USB 3 port. Right now I'm connected to that via print sharing on my older iMac.

     

    doug

  • Doug Lerner2 Level 4 Level 4 (1,030 points)

    So to clarify, you have two USB 3 ports, and you've connected a USB 2 hub to one and a USB 3 hub to the other? Do you have multiple USB 3 drives connected to the USB 3 hub?

     

    doug

  • AWMarine Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Ports on the Mac always have worked fine. It's with the Mac talking to the hub, and vice versa, that things get fouled. Apple used to deny that the hub was their problem. I spent over 60 hours on the phone with them, and I'd expect others did as well, to get them to take responsibility for this mess. Eventually, they got the message and had engineers work with the manufacturers. That's where we are now. Right now I have a $300 Belkin Thunderbolt Dock on my desk with a Plugable $40 hub. The Plugable is carrying the load and that's good enough for me. The firmware version is key!


    ~

  • Doug Lerner2 Level 4 Level 4 (1,030 points)

    Why do you have a $300 Thunderbolt dock? That's a rather expensive accessory!

     

    doug

  • AWMarine Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    You're getting ahead of me Doug.

     

    I have 2 USB 3.0 ports on my MacBook Pro Retina , one on each side. I use one for the hub, and everything (usually) gets plugged into the hub. That includes the USB 2.0 hub. If I need more, I daisy chain. That leaves the other port open for the receiver for my Logitech mouse, the Bluetooth dongle/adapter for my headset used with Dragon Dictate (A bad product  from Nuance for the Mac. The PC version works fine in Windows on my Mac. Another case where PC software doesn't work well with Apples.

     

    ~

  • Doug Lerner2 Level 4 Level 4 (1,030 points)

    Right now I have two WD USB 3 drives connected to the two USB 3 ports. I suppose I could connect both to a USB 3 port on the right side - those are my only USB 3 devices. If the Plugable works better than the Anker did that is.

     

    And then I could connect my existing USB 2 hub to the left side for USB 2 devices, like the printer and headset and for connecting iDevices for iTunes direct backups.

     

    That would avoid daisy-chaining - and leave USB 2 and USB 3 devices isolated, right?

     

    It sounds like you have many more devices than I do!

     

    doug

  • BlueFrog69 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    There is a page on Apple's own website that owns up to Macbooks having trouble with USB peripherals. Apple recommends that when a Macbook goes idle, it needs to be woken by the Macbook itself (such as the power button) and not by a USB peripheral such as a mouse etc. I have to admit that since trying this personally, I have had things running reliably ... seems crazy, but try it.

  • AWMarine Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Doug,

     

    Plugging a USB 2.0 hub into a USB 3.0 hub’s port has not been a problem for me. I favor that approach as it keeps the 2nd port on the Mac conveniently available. One of my earlier postings on this thread mentioned this.

     

    The Belkin Thunderbolt Dock has a variety of ports that make it interesting. I’ve recently seen it priced at $200, still expensive. I’ve had it on loan for a couple months to test for a certified  Apple consultant. As it is apparently isolated from Apple’s USB Bus it’s given me no problems.

     

    The Dock was being considered until I found learned from Plugable that the firmware upgrade mentioned previously would solve most, if not all, of my problems with USB 3.0 on my MacBook Pro Retina.

     

    Regarding your question about my USB 3.0 inventory: I have 5 desktop and 3 portable USB 3.0 drives, plus a Buffalo portable drive with both Thunderbolt and USB 3.0 ports. Also flash drives. I've tried 20 hubs from 4 to 10 ports, and the Dock. (The Dock, if it continues to work, isn't so expensive in comparison to the time spent testing, recordkeeping, phone calls, trips to the Genius Bar, discussions with support and Apple technical staff, the files and drives that have been corrupted and had to be restored, and more. $200, or even $300, looks like a bargain to me now.)

     

    ~

  • Doug Lerner2 Level 4 Level 4 (1,030 points)

    Well, I definitely don't want to spend $200-$300 on a Thunderbolt docking solution at the moment. For one thing, I don't have nearly as many peripherals as you do. Just:

     

    1. Two USB 3 WD portable drives.
    2. One old desktop HD with its own power. USB 2 I believe.
    3. My Canon printer.
    4. My Logitech USB headset.

     

    Other than that I like to connect my iDevices directly every once in a while for a complete, encypted iTunes backup.

     

    I'm thinking that maybe I can even just get away with my old USB 2 hub for now. I have one WD drive connected directory to a USB port for Time Machine. The other one, while a USB 3 drive, only runs once a day at 3:30 am for the CCC backup. It probably doesn't matter if it runs slowly.

     

    Or I could get a USB 3 hub for the two drives and use the USB 2 hub for the USB 2 devices.

     

    doug

  • AWMarine Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    BlueFrog69 brings up an interesting reference. I think I found the article and provided the link below. It was last modified in July 2013 and it is relevant to this discussion on hubs and their power capacity and capability for charging.

     

     

    Apple Computers and Displays: Powering peripherals through USB


    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT4049?viewlocale=en_US&locale=en_US

     

     

    Of interest is that USB 3.0 ports have a max current output of 900 ma. Apple boosts this to 1,100 ma on the Mac or Apple display ports, but only for charging Apple peripherals. If you need to charge an Android device, you have to settle for the lower current.

     

     

    Doug,

     

    This may be a good reason to keep that 2nd port available for charging an iPhone or iPad with higher curent requirements. It could serve as the charging port you were seeking.

     

     

    ✯✯✯✯✯✯✯✯✯✯✯✯✯✯✯✯✯

     

     

    As far as waking the peripherals after they’re asleep, that’s not been a problem I’ve encountered.

     

    My problem was mostly drives that disconnect/ dismount while I’m working and possibly transferring data. That's a serious problem, and one that Apple should have addressed before now, and really before June 2012. Adopting the USB 3.0 standard on new Macs without the hubs to support it is unconscionable, and not what is expected of Apple.

     

     

    ~

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