At a Glance
- Flexible cable choices
- HDMI 4K at 30Hz rather than 60Hz
It calls itself just a hub but this portable box of ports has enough to go to battle with bigger, more expensive laptop docking stations.
Price When Reviewed
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The Twelve South StayGo is an unobtrusive portable USB-C Hub that gives you most of the extra ports you need, while also passing power through to you laptop.
There are plenty of
USB-C hubs on offer and also more powerful
laptop docking stations.
The StayGo is something in between – it has a bunch of different ports but is also lightweight and small enough to fit in your pocket for portability.
Some USB-C hubs that give your laptop additional ports think they are full laptop docking stations, but skip essentials such as full power delivery.
The StayGo USB-C Hub, from Twelve South, maybe undersells itself by calling itself a ‘hub’ – it’s really a very portable dock.
It’s our favourite portable USB-C dock.
If your laptop has faster Thunderbolt 3 rather than USB-C ports. you might prefer
CalDigit’s Thunderbolt 3 Mini Dock, which can run two external 4K displays at 60Hz. The StayGo features one more USB-A port, and attaches to the laptop by a longer cable so is neater, and also cheaper!
(The Caldigit Mini Dock works only with T3 laptops, not plain USB-C. The StayGo works with both, although T3 laptops will lose their 40Gbps bandwidth advantage with this 5Gbps dock.)
The aluminium StayGo measures 15mm-x-127mm-x- 62mm (0.59in-x-5in-x-2.44in), and weighs 133g (4.7 ounces).
Like most docks and hubs, it’s also plug and play, so doesn’t require tricky drivers.
StayGo USB-C Hub features
- Two USB-C ports (5Gbps) – one for host laptop connection with 85W USB-C PD charging, and one for external power (100W maximum)
- Three USB-A 3.0 (5Gbps) ports – one with 7.5W BC 1.2 charging, two powered to 900mA
- HDMI – 4K at 30Hz or full HD
- Gigabit Ethernet for wired Internet access
- SD Card reader
- Micro SD Card reader
I appreciate the HDMI port rather than DisplayPort that so many docks stick with. HDMi is so much easier to use for external PC displays, and is the main choice for TVs if you want to hook your laptop to your home-entertainment screen.
Gamers wanting 4K screens at full 60Hz will need to look for a USB-C dock that features DisplayLink technology. Most Thunderbolt 3 laptop docks can handle 4K at 60Hz and often with more than one display.
But 4K displays at 30Hz or full 1080 HD will be fine for most users.
With its maximum 100W power, the StayGo can charge a laptop up to 85W with 15W over for the hub itself and other connected bus-powered devices.
A power adapter is not included, as you are expected to use your laptop’s charger – or you can choose from our recommended list of
best USB-C PD wall chargers.
This is especially true if you are using the StayGo with the iPad Pro, which ships with a puny 18W charger.
This should be enough for most people. If you want to add more than one external display, look at our other
recommended USB-C laptop docking stations.
It has four small feet for stability, but most helpful is the detachable 6in travel USB-C cable that handily stores inside the hub rather than hanging outside like you get on many hubs. This will save you carrying around a tangly snake of a cable in your travel bag.
It also comes with a 1m USB-C cable for when you need that extra length and to potentially hide the hub further away from your laptop.
Both cables are well made, and appear durable.
Its Gigabit Ethernet port – to connect to faster-than-Wi-Fi wired networks – is much more robust than the flimsy connectors on some hubs.
The SD and Micro SD card readers can connect and download simultaneously – handy for creatives with high-resolution photos or 4K video for editing. Note that the slots are UHS-I ready, but won’t work with faster UHS-II SD cards.
We love these card readers for other reasons, though. You can pick up a 250GB SD or Micro SD Card for around £50 / $50, and this makes an excellent, tiny backup or archive solution that’s much cheaper and faster than a portable hard drive or adding a larger SSD drive to your laptop. See our list of
recommended Micro SD Cards.
Its aluminium case ensures its light weight and also helps to dissipate heat from the charging.
It works with USB-C and Thunderbolt 3 laptops, including Apple MacBooks and Windows notebooks.
The Twelve South StayGo USB-C Hub costs £99.99 / $99.99 / €10.9.99 / A$165.
While this is more than many USB-C hubs, we think it’s a reasonable price for what is in effect a USB-C docking station, and a portable one at that.
It comes with cables, but does require the charger that came with your laptop or another wall PD charger.
Twelve South StayGo USB-C Hub: Specs
- 4K HDMI Port, 2x USB A 3.0 Ports, (1) Dual functionality USB A port w/ BC 1.2 for up to 7.5 Watts for faster charging, Gigabit Ethernet Port, SD Port / Micro SD Port, and USB C 3.1 Port 85W PD.