[Step 4.5] Donald Dock final specs


*** This post is part of the Donald Dock project development.
*** Please check the master topic for an overview of the project

Purpose : Announce the final specs

Dear community,

Thank you all for the discussion in the previous step! We got many great ideas to shape the perfect Donald Dock.

Now below is the proposed final specs of Donald Dock (the updates/changes are bold): a product that provides more ports to V and other notebooks/laptops/tablets to work better with peripherals.

Port No. Ports Type Technology/description
1 USB-C Thunderbolt 3, USB PowerDelivery (up to 85w), connected to the host device
2 USB-C Thunderbolt 3 (supports DP Alt Mode), for daisy chain device, monitor, or other USB device
3 USB-C USB 3.1/3.2, with power delivery (up to 18w)
4 USB-C USB 3.1
5 USB-A USB 3.1, with power delivery (up to 10w)
6 USB-A USB 3.1
7 USB-A USB 3.1
8 HDMI HDMI 2.0/2.1
9 SD card port UHS-I/UHS-II
10 3.5mm audio jack Audio out/in combined
11 Ethernet port Gigabit
12 DC-IN About 150W power
13 DisplayPort DP 1.4
14 (optional) MicroSD card port UHS-I/UHS-II
15 (optional) m.2. port for SSD
16 (optional) Wireless charging Qi, 7.5w - 10w
  • Port 1 should be placed on the side that is easy for connecting (not the back side)
  • DD supports both Windows and MacOS
  • A 0.5m to 0.8m long Thunderbolt 3 cable is included
  • Dust cover or dummy plugs are included to protect the unused ports
  • Donald Dock will be a stand-alone product to work universally with different notebooks/laptops/tablets.

Do these updated specs make sense ?

  • Yes, I like it
  • It makes sense, but still need some updates
  • No, we need to re-design it

0 voters

Next Step

We will begin to contact suppliers and ID design agents, and will update their feedback/comments in the community for further discussion/decision making.

We also need your help to look at the market:

What’s the best similar product in the market now? How is it compared to the proposed Donald Dock? And what’s the price of that product?


Wireless charging should be finalized as a spec, and labeling of ports should be proper on the final product so as to have a proper distinction between differences in same port types, as in case of power delivery.


Is this going to be designed as a stand-alone gadget?
Or as a module? Designed parallel with the mini pc and all?
Is there going to be a wireless charging surface on it?


I still really prefer a 10gb port for ethernet over a 1gb. Especially if the device is to be future proof and work proof.

And I would still prefer the combined headphone jack to be separated, or a separate mic jack and a combined jack.


It has been mentioned in the post clearly that this will be a standalone product, and inclusion of wireless charging is not fixed for now, also mentioned in the post.:neutral_face::no_mouth:


I think 2 tb3 ports are not that future proof, when one is already occupied by the laptop and another one for example by an egpu.

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I think for now the key is simplicity. What I mean here is that products will work with each other and will look like they are from one product family. But for starters we will make them work as standalone products first to avoid complexity but if we have some cool ideas on combining them we are all for it! So don’t hesitate to suggest. I do like that idea of Vesa mountable dock or mini pc behind monitor!


Someone showed an example of some kind of mountable bracket which the dock and mini pc could be separately be mounted.

I would also like to see an accessoire to hang the dock underneath the desk. Would pay extra for something simple like that tbh.


Thank You, I know.
I was hoping for some parallel development.


Going to agree on this one. It shouldn’t be hard to implement, either; just have a separate jack, and have the wiring for the mics linked together so there’s no additional electronics needed (other than a relay, to make sure only one jack at a time allows input).

Same with Ethernet. We’re nearing 1gbps WiFi speeds. 10gbps should be standard.


I really like the Surface dock’s simple and sleek design. But we should change the colour to a darker graphite with matte finish, to match the ⛛


This would be my suggestion for a simple way of providing VESA capabilities to DD. I like the idea in general to make DD and the MiniPC quadratic with the same dimensions in length and width (not in hight). those holes in the miniPC can make it easily compatible with DD. you just need longer screws and some rubber between the devices… Connection should stay as simple as possible (no proprietary port or magnetic shit) just connect those with a short cable… (if its behind a screen facing the wall, you can’t see the cable…)

This would be the perfect place for DD!!!

If you decide to design DD with rubber plugs for keeping the ports save, you can easily design some more plugs to have some “feet” for table placement inside the VESA holes (you even can place DD upside down to change the sides of the ports if you are left-handed) and some “connectors” with a hole in it to fit the VESA holes and provide some rubber between the screws and the device…


I think that both DD and mini PC will be a bit to much in height/weight. Especially if we choose to use something of the apple mini format.

Though I still like the idea of the bracket holding them both. But have to watch out we don’t overplay most VESA arms. Especially the spring/gas mounts usually have a max weight of 6 - 6.5 KG

I always read your post with the voice of Jonathan Banks


you’re right, to increase the distance leads to a leverage effect. So a 6kg arm can maybe just hold a 1kg monitor in the end.
But I wanted to point out the advantages of the “4 holes through the whole device” concept which makes it so versatile, you can even screw it directly to a wall…, turn it around…, mount it to a bracket…, stack it stable…, or just use the holes to stick the V pen inside…
MacMini from 2005 is 20cmx20cm, I’m sure we can reduce this size to 16cmx16cm and VESA compatible holes lying 3cm from the edge. To compensate this we could increase the height about double the height of a MacMini (3,6cm) to 7cm…


The main “issue” i see is that we’d need custom PCB to accommodate the holes

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I thougt that a miniPC always needs a custom PCB… but I can be wrong about this…

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Not necessary, could still be a multi-purpose pcb/mobo. But don’t forget that the dock also needs an PCB, and custom solutions drive up the costs. By how much depends on what customization of course. And we know that PCB’s can have holes in them (just look at a mobo). Just not sure how much it’ll add costs. Maybe @Konstantinos could shed some light on that.


Nearest seems to be the Dell Business Thunderbolt Dock - TB16 with 180W Adapter (240w also available) which is currently £261 from Dell and £199 USD 250 from Amazon for 240w



If the holes don’t pass all the way thru that could be avoided. Threaded holes on both sides of the housing would achieve the same goals.


I believe for the design should be like standard docking with just not only ports outside it needs cables connection ports like 1 or 2 inches to connect to what ever devices and should supply a fan or blowing option for the heat . the center of the docking must be channel to leave the device standing for the use