Horizontal Dock Progress Update Part 2

This is the second post in our series of blog updates on the development progress for the Horizontal Dock (click here to read the first post). It still won’t make your Horizontal Dock appear any faster, but hopefully there will be some comfort in knowing why we’re taking extra time to bring them to market.   Thunderbolt – With help from Intel and Apple, Henge Docks’ timeline for Thunderbolt development relative to the Horizontal Dock production timeline has been sped up substantially. Every Horizontal Dock model will now support Thunderbolt at launch.   Horizontal Dock PortsPort Layout – Showing the prototypes for the Horizontal Dock at CES, MacWorld and SXSW earlier this year gave us a unique opportunity to talk with users face to face very early in the development process. One thing we got a lot of feedback on, was the type of ports and port locations on the rear of the dock.   As in the prototype, the Horizontal Dock for the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display will allow the use of up to three external displays. There are now two Mini Display/Thunderbolt ports and the third video out has been changed to HDMI to reduce confusion over the port types and increase the dock’s versatility.   The six USB 3.0 ports have been split across the two sides and flipped from a vertical to a horizontal orientation, improving accessibility. Due to a lack of demand, the FireWire 800 port has been removed, which frees up more space on the rear bezel for the other ports. FireWire 800 may still be integrated with a Thunderbolt dongle. The SD card reader was moved closer to the side of the dock for easier access.   Twin headset-compatible audio jacks on the right and left side of the dock run through digital audio controllers inside the dock. This means that a user can have an iPhone headset and an external speaker system plugged into the dock at the same time, switching between them at will, without plugging or unplugging anything.   

Dock-Only-Front-LeftDriveline - While the outside of the dock looks the same as the prototypes we showed at CES and MacWorld, the entire driveline was redesigned for space and reliability concerns. When we started working with Intel, we discovered that the components and boards to support Thunderbolt would need more room than was originally anticipated. Our factory and mechanical engineer worked together to develop a new driveline that is more compact and robust.   Stay tuned for our next round of updates tomorrow…   

Matthew Vroom

CEO, Henge Docks

  • Henge Docks says...

    @Kevan – To be released in January of 2015!

    On December 09, 2014

  • Kevan Pratt says...

    Is this product ever going to leave the R&D room? I’ve been reading about it for years now, and still no release date. Beautifully functional piece of theoretical equipment that would enable my sales team to switch to MacBooks… In theory.

    On November 19, 2014

  • Alan says...

    What is the status of new vertical dock? Is it going to be delivered anytime soon?

    On March 17, 2014

  • Mark says...

    Just wanted to mention that I’m disappointed about the Firewire port being left out. It’s the only reason I was waiting for this dock: my two Thunderbolt ports are already taken on my laptop (so they will be on the dock as well), which means I can’t use FW devices (like my sound card). This was the main problem I was looking to solve by getting this dock.

    (FWIW, I have TB->DVI adapters plugged into the two TB ports, and they do not provide daisy-chaining so I can’t just plug the TB->FW adapter “down the chain”.)

    On March 17, 2014

  • Terry says...

    I reckon you guys should get rid of that extra audio port and put back the firewire port :)

    To me, that extra audio port is useless.

    On March 17, 2014

  • Nick says...

    Thank you for the updates. Like Mark, I still very much need the FW port and this shuffle (though understandable and looking like an overall improvement), makes the Horizontal Dock much less useful to me.

    On March 17, 2014

  • Steve H says...

    I’d like to second the comment about the loss of the FireWire port. There are a lot so us with legacy FireWire drives that would really benifit from the inclusion of the one thing that Apple has deemed as ‘non essential’. I’m no Luddite and accept that we should move with the times, but not by throwing out ‘everything’ just because it could increase the size if the chassis by 1 or 2 mm!

    On March 17, 2014

  • Alan says...

    By “delivered” I meant finished and put out for sell.

    On March 17, 2014

  • Junior says...

    I am a little disappointed to see the extra thunderbolt disappear. I wonder if this was actually done to increase flexibility. The HDMI port can only be used as a display.

    Frankly, I don’t see the point. I suspect this was a technical issue or perhaps one of cost. Has nothing to do with flexibility. If you did genuinely choose an HDMI rather than thunderbolt, you just made yourself like all the other docks.

    On March 17, 2014

  • Jon Kinney says...

    Seems to me that forgoing the SD card reader to bring back FW800 would be a good move. You can easily add an SD card reader via USB 3.0. Where as to get FW, you have to cannibalize a TB port :/ The trade off there is very very significant.

    With the removal of FW800 this dock is more of a port replicator and less of a “add functionality” type device. The only added thing we’re getting is the gigabit ethernet port. Which is definitely one of the other reasons I want this! But FW was huge too. For that matter leave off one or two USB 3.0 ports to bring back the FW800. Users can again add a USB 3.0 hub if they need more ports but we can’t get FW800 back without larger sacrifices in the TB department.

    On March 17, 2014

  • Jon Kinney says...

    I also would appreciate the firewire 800 port returning. I’m an audio professional and several of my (quite expensive) external Glyph professional raid drives work best with Pro Tools as a Firewire external device. I also have all my TB ports used up by other external gear/displays.

    On March 17, 2014

  • Paul says...

    Will the ethernet port be a gigabit ethernet port?

    On March 17, 2014

  • Kristin Junk says...

    We are hoping to have an availability date for the vertical docking stations for the MacBook Pros with Retina Display within the next few weeks! Stay tuned for updates.

    On March 17, 2014

  • Kristin Junk says...

    Yes, it will be a gigabit ethernet port.

    On March 17, 2014

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