Kool Toolz: BookEndz
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Kool Toolz: BookEndz


Laptops are great, but those who use them as their primary computer probably connect them to an external monitor, printer and other devices when they're at home or at the office. That can mean lots of peripheral connecting and disconnecting, as well as cable clutter. The BookEndz Docks (http://www.bookendzdocks.com/) are designed to deal with this problem. In fact, BookEndz' product line includes docking stations for Apple laptops dating back to 2000.


Volume Number: 25
Issue Number: 10
Column Tag: Kool Toolz

Kool Toolz: BookEndz

by Dennis Sellers

Laptops are great, but those who use them as their primary computer probably connect them to an external monitor, printer and other devices when they're at home or at the office. That can mean lots of peripheral connecting and disconnecting, as well as cable clutter. The BookEndz Docks (http://www.bookendzdocks.com/) are designed to deal with this problem. In fact, BookEndz' product line includes docking stations for Apple laptops dating back to 2000.

As this article was being written, BookEndz was accepting pre-orders for docking stations for Apple's "unibody" MacBooks and MacBook Pros. The station for the 17-inch Unibody MacBook Pro will ship later this year. Pricing is US$159 for 13-inch docking stations, $299.95 for 15-inch docking stations, and $319.95 for 17-inch docking stations.

The docking stations are designed to eliminate cable confusion and damage to connectors. Once the peripheral devices are plugged into the BookEndz Dock, they can remain in and the portable can be connected or disconnected as needed. An "ejection system" ejects the laptop.

For example, the 17-inch docking station replicates all of the connectors and ports from the sides of the 17-inch MacBook Pro and routes the connectors to the back of the dock and manages the new MacSafe Power Connector. The dock allows for all of the peripheral devices normally connected to the sides of the MacBook - Power, Ethernet, Modem, Video, FireWire 400 and 800, USB, Audio In, Audio Out - to be plugged into the back of the dock, and remain plugged in, independent of the computer. Additionally, the dock includes a powered USB hub for a total of five USB ports rather than the standard 2-3 found on Apple's laptops. There are also full-size VGA and DVI ports.

This means that taking the computer from the office or the home, or moving it from one room to another, doesn't require disconnecting and reconnecting several devices. However, you must use your MagSafe power supply to power up your MacBook Pro. The dock doesn't supply power (Apple doesn't license the MagSafe technology to other companies), but it does have a feed-through slot to house the MagSafe Connector.

Using a BookEndz Dock with your laptop involves a few simple steps. First, place the BookEndz Dock on the flat surface on which you'll be using it. Plug all of your external devices into the? station (video monitor, network, printer, etc.).

Shut down your laptop and close the LCD screen.

Move the release handle on the BookEndz Dock to the vertical position. Place the laptop on to the BookEndz Dock. Make sure that the ports of the MacBook Pro align with the connectors of the BookEndz Dock. The connectors mate with those on your laptop and allow you to dock and undock with your external devices. Once those ports are lined up push the left hand side of Docking Station into the ports on the laptop.

Restart your laptop and allow your peripheral devices to boot-up.

When you're ready to travel with your MacBook or MacBook Pro, shut down your laptop and all external devices and close the LCD screen. It's not necessary to unplug them from the dock.

Move the release handle to the vertical position. The BookEndz Dock will undock from your laptop.

The BookEndz's male connectors have a noticeable bit of flexibility, which concerns some folks about their durability. This looseness is designed to allow the connectors to align with their respective female notebook sockets, even sockets that might be slightly off. However, you should certainly dock and undock your laptop with care. Don't go yanking it loose from the BookEndz. Also, the first few times you use the BookEndz, make sure everything is lined up perfectly. After that, it's a little smoother to use.

There have also been comments that the design of the BookEndz is a bit unwieldy. However, considering the very purpose of the docking station, that's probably unavoidable.

After all, the BookEndz' purpose is to "transform" your laptop into a desktop computer. For those who carry a laptop between home and office, two of the docking stations might be a convenience worth paying for. It's a matter of how often you connect and disconnect your Apple laptop from several peripherals and accessories. If you'll be docking and un-docking your laptops several times a day, the price tag will be worth it.


Dennis Sellers is a long time journalist. He started in the newspaper
business, but has been in the online journalism business for the past
15 years. He's the editor/publisher of Macsimum News
(http://www.macsimumnews.com)

 
AAPL
$99.76
Apple Inc.
-0.65
GOOG
$729.50
Alphabet Inc.
+5.38
MSFT
$51.92
Microsoft Corporation
+0.03
MacNews Search:
Community Search:
view counter

view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter
view counter

Grab it now: Game Craft’s Legend of War...
The real time strategy game is now available for you to sink your teeth into, through the App Store and Google Play. Combining elements of skill, strategy and empire building, Legend of War is a real gamers’ game. [Read more] | Read more »
Skateboard Party 3 ft. Greg Lutzka (Gam...
Skateboard Party 3 ft. Greg Lutzka 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Skateboard Party is back! This third edition of the popular sports franchise features professional skater Greg Lutzka. Skateboard Party 3 brings the thrill of skateboarding to your mobile device! Hop on your... | Read more »
Cubious (Games)
Cubious 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Cubious – How smart are you? How high is your IQube?Solve the impossible puzzles to find out, and help a lost little cube find his family. | Read more »
Goat Simulator Waste of Space (Games)
Goat Simulator Waste of Space 1.1 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.1 (iTunes) Description: ** IMPORTANT - SUPPORTED DEVICESiPhone 4S, iPad 2, iPod Touch 5 or better.** | Read more »
Wildfulness - Unwind in nature and calm...
Wildfulness - Unwind in nature and calm your mind with nature sounds and illustrations 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Healthcare & Fitness Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Spending time in nature helps you to reduce stress, increases your energy level and improves your mood. | Read more »
Dr. Panda Racers (Education)
Dr. Panda Racers 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Education Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: STEP ON THE GAS, RACE AND WIN!Fasten your seat belts and get ready to race! Speed your way to the finish line while doing cool tricks and jumps. Challenge your favorite Dr. Panda characters to win special prizes, unlock... | Read more »
ROMANCING SAGA 2 (Games)
ROMANCING SAGA 2 1.0.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $17.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: Romancing SaGa 2, originally released only in Japan in 1993, has been completely remastered and now receives its first ever official English translation!■No two players will experience the story in the same way■ | Read more »
WRIO Keyboard (Utilities)
WRIO Keyboard 1.0 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Utilities Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: 40% OFF DURING LIMITED INTRODUCTORY OFFER | Read more »
Hatoful Boyfriend (Games)
Hatoful Boyfriend 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: The hit PC game that everybirdie loves has now migrated to your mobile device! Now you are free to explore the wonders of St. PigeoNation’s Institute wherever you may be, which birdie will you meet while on your travels? | Read more »
Warp Shift (Games)
Warp Shift 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: [ CHECK YOUR HARDWARE: Warp Shift does NOT run on iPhone 4, iPad 1 and iPod touch 4G or older devices! It requires at least iOS8 and runs on iPhone 4S to iPhone 6+, iPad mini 1 and 2, iPad Pro, iPad 2 (or newer) and iPod touch 5G... | Read more »
All contents are Copyright 1984-2010 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.