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Home / Tips and Tricks / Kensington's LD4650P is a decent dock and lock, but an expensive station wagon – Review Geek

Kensington's LD4650P is a decent dock and lock, but an expensive station wagon – Review Geek



Rating:
5/10
?

  • 1 – Absolute hot garbage
  • 2 – Sorta lukewarm garbage
  • 3 – Heavily defective design
  • 4 – Some advantages, many disadvantages
  • 5 – Acceptable imperfectly
  • 6 – Good enough for that Sale
  • 7 – Great, but not best in class
  • 8 – Fantastic, with a few footnotes
  • 9 – Shut up and take my money [19659004] 10 – Absolute Design Nirvana

Price: $ 230

  The Kensington LD4650P Laptop Docking Station connects to a laptop with various cables attached to it.
Michael Crider

A sophisticated desktop configuration that can be switched to portable devices requires a powerful desktop dock. Kensington's LD4650P is one such dock that incorporates some impressive locking features. But his flourishes and whistles do not justify the sky-high price for most.

What we like

  • Impressive RFID locking mechanism
  • Duty construction
  • Audio via DisplayPort

And what we do not

  • High price
  • Limited video options
  • Lock only works with Standard laptops

Using the LD4650P with a single USB-C port Allows your Windows laptop access to two DisplayPort screens, four USB 3.0 ports, Ethernet data, and a standard headphone jack. Everything works as advertised, with the added benefit of being able to tie your laptop to a heavy base. You can attach the base to a desk or table with the included chain. However, at a cost of $ 250, you'll need to take advantage of every single feature and face some major ergonomic and functional drawbacks to consider using this dock.

Lock It Down

The LD4650P looks strange and has a heavy metal base slips up under the hinge of a laptop. Two "wings" on both sides clamp on the hinge to fix the dock. How can you release the wings from the laptop when you are done with the work? The LED on the right hand side gives you a hint. If you pass the supplied "key" (a plastic tag with an RFID chip inside) over the right side, the wings are released. The green LED flashes blue and both sides click outwards thanks to a small internal motor.

  The key next to the Kensington LD4650P dock lights green.
An RFID keychain releases the locking mechanism. Michael Crider

It is remarkably safe when the wings are attached and the dock is secured with a Kensington laptop lock. However, this design has some serious disadvantages. Most obviously, it does not work with something like a tablet. It is not possible to back up a Surface Pro or my HP Chromebook X2 in this dock. This does not mean that the electronic components stop working. But anything but a standard laptop – and even a fairly thin one without a protruding battery – can not use this security feature.

  One HP Chromebook and LD4650P Dock (not connected).
The dock does not work with tablets or surface-style 2-in-1 laptops. Michael Crider

The locking mechanism of the dock does not work even if the power supply is not present, which is not a problem for a conventional lock. That's probably not a problem for most people. Why should you have a USB C dock when it stops working? However, this makes this gadget unsuitable for larger deployments that do not exploit full capacity every time.

In your particular scenario, the unique RFID key may be an advantage or disadvantage over the more general Kensington lock key.

Using the Dock

Using the dock was a more enjoyable and flexible experience. This position allows you to easily connect up to two monitors (plus a laptop screen) as well as any USB-based accessories you may require. I was disappointed that I found only two video output options and no selection for the much more common HDMI with a resolution limited to 1920×1200. The dock was able to handle my main monitor, but only if there was not a second monitor connected at the same time.

  The connectors on the back of the Kensington LD4650P.
The rear ports include Ethernet, four USB ports. A, two DisplayPorts and a combined headphone / microphone jack. Michael Crider

I was also disappointed that the dock supports only USB-A connections, even though they are 3.1 high-speed links. This meant that I could not connect any of my USB-C devices directly to the docking station – I had to use a secondary port on the laptop.

The USB-C-PD connection on the docking station works well and transmits video and data without major problems or errors. (It did not work on my HP Chromebook, but that's not the only problem I had with this computer – it worked just as expected on Windows.)

I was pleased to see that it was broadcasting audio through DisplayPort – a This feature is not self-evident and is often ruled out by laptops, docks, and splinters. The output power of the C-cable is 60 watts, which is enough to fill even the thirstiest batteries.

For whom?

The LD4650P costs $ 230 at the time of writing, a high price, even for a USB-C dock with two video outputs. With a bit of hunting you can find something with the same (or more) connections for a lot less.

However, something less expensive does not have the robust, built-in locking mechanism. Even if it works only with traditional laptop designs, the one or other minutes you will save by not having to lock your laptop at your desk will be of use.

If you want to take advantage of the dock's electronic features and the disappointing resolution and DisplayPort limitation, do not mind, it might be worth the premium price.

  A laptop docked and locked to the Kensington LD4650P.
A laptop is properly docked and locked. Michael Crider

I can not imagine that there are a large number of people with standard laptops who work in offices where theft is a problem and have so little time to be prepared to invest more for a faster lockout option. And would accept the limitations of resolution and a lack of additional USB-C ports. This is a very small intersection of the Venn diagram.

For these few people, however, the LD4650P is ideal. Everyone else will probably be fine with a cheaper, more flexible dock and a non-electronic lock.

What we like

  • Impressive RFID locking mechanism
  • High performance construction
  • Audio via DisplayPort

And what we do not

  • High price
  • Limited video options
  • Lock only works with standard Laptops


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