AKiTiO has announced its new Thunderbolt 3 dock for high-end mobile workstations. AKiTiO’s Thunderbolt 3 Dock Pro features a 10 GbE port enabled by an Aquantia chip, along with multiple USB Type-A ports, card readers, eSATA, and other connectors.

The Thunderbolt 3 Dock Pro from AKiTiO is aimed at creative professionals who happen to use 10 GbE Ethernet (or other multi-Gig options), so the vast majority of its owners right now will be from corporate space. In terms of connectors, the Thunderbolt 3 Dock Pro has three USB 3.1 Type-A ports (one on the front, two on the back), one eSATA header, a DisplayPort, a 10 GbE RJ45 port enabled by Aquantia’s AQtion AQC-107 silicon, a 6-pin power input, and two TB3 connectors with 15 W and 60 W power delivery.

The complexity of AKiTiO’s Thunderbolt 3 dock should be rather formidable as AQtion AQC-107 silicon connects using a PCIe interface, whereas eSATA requires a separate controller. To cool down the device, AKiTiO uses a fan that can still be turned off in a bid to make the dock whisper quiet.

AKiTiO has not announced details about pricing of its Thunderbolt 3 Dock Pro, but keeping in mind that this is the only TB3 docking solution for Apple’s MacBook Pro and other high-end laptops, we expect the device to carry a premium price tag.

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  • felixneo - Wednesday, October 17, 2018 - link

    What do you mean by “the only TB3 docking solution”? There are a lot of TB3 docks on the market, just without 10 GbE.
  • zepi - Wednesday, October 17, 2018 - link

    Looks nice, but wth is that power connector doing there?!

    And I'd prefer additional display outputs, either hdmi or second DP. Though I guess 10GbE requires some real bandwidth as well, so maybe there just isn't enough BW to do it all?
  • Kevin G - Wednesday, October 17, 2018 - link

    Off hand, the power connector looks like PCIe graphics card power header. This could work out well if you are use the eSATA port for some SATA drives and power them via an ordinary ATX power supply.
  • Lord of the Bored - Wednesday, October 17, 2018 - link

    Given it has a cooling fan, probably supplying a significant amount of current.
  • timecop1818 - Wednesday, October 17, 2018 - link

    One of the USB-C/TB3 ports actually does have DisplayPort alt mode - so you have 2 DP outputs on this thing.
  • unixfg - Wednesday, October 24, 2018 - link

    I've seen some Cisco hardware that used 6-pin (and some that used 22-pin) connectors like that for external power supplies. It is a bit weird, but at least it's not gonna fall out v0v
  • cacnoff - Wednesday, October 17, 2018 - link

    Already on Amazon - $350
  • mhwwdman - Wednesday, October 17, 2018 - link

    All Thunderbolt 3 and USB Type C docks nowadays should have at least 85W power delivery...
  • Kevin G - Wednesday, October 17, 2018 - link

    If this is like other AQN-107 NICs in a Mac system, the Ethernet port will also function as an AVB audio-over-network solution. With 10 Gbit of bandwidth to play around with, conceptually you could hit 1152 audio channels out of it (though 1024 is the more realistic limit due to other factors like maximum 802.3Qav streams through a switch).

    I do wish that docks like this could optionally be PoE+ powered with the option to provide some host charging for low power laptops with Thunderbolt 3. Even just self powering the dock via PoE could be beneficial. A bit of a niche feature but there have been a couple of times on the road this would have been wonderful in other USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 NICs.
  • wr3zzz - Wednesday, October 17, 2018 - link

    Anandtech should do an article about the interoperability of all the TB3 docks on the market. I am about to purchase a Spectre Folio and all the stories of compatibility issues are scaring me. TB3 docks are not cheap and what is the point of having a standard if it's device locked.

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