USB Adapters for your MacBook Pro or Air

USB-C adapters for your Mac

The Ultimate Guide

We get asked on a daily basis, do I need an adapter for this MacBook Pro? Apple's newer models feature Thunderbolt 3 ports that carry power, USB, DisplayPort, HDMI, and VGA over a single cable. Thunderbolt 3 (and Thunderbolt 4) uses the same connector type as USB-C.

This means that you may need an adapter to connect your other devices, for example an external display, hard drive, camera, printer, iPhone, iPad. It also means that if you have a newer USB-C (or Thunderbolt 3) device you can plug it in directly.

This guide is to help you work out what ports you have and our recommendations for the best adapters for the job.

Ports cheatsheet

USB-A (USB)

Thunderbolt 3 / USB-C

HDMI / HDMI 2.0

Thunderbolt 1 and 2

Mini DisplayPort

Ethernet


⚠️ A word of warning ⚠️

TLDR: We'd advise against cheap third party adapters or hubs, stick to the ones approved by Apple 👍

Since the introduction of the USC-C port many users have experienced issues with non-compliant or third party docks, hubs and adapters causing their USB-C ports to break and in some cases completely brick their devices.

The cheaper adapters, for example those found on Amazon can be tempting, but to avoid issues down the line we'd recommend spending a little more for those approved by Apple.

 

Apple USB-C to USB Adapter, £19
Connections: USB port

Apple USB-C Digital AV Multiport Adapter, £75
Connections: USB, HDMI, USB-C
Good if you want to connect a display and/or charge your Mac at the same.

Belkin USB 3.0 4-Port Hub + USB-C Cable, £59.95
Connections: 4 x USB, USB-C and adapter power supply

 

Satechi Aluminium USB-C Multiport Pro Adapter, £64.95
Connections: HDMI, USB-A, USB-C, micro and SD card access
Great if you're looking for one adapter gives you a range of functionality including SD card readers

CalDigit Thunderbolt 3 Mini Dock, £119.95
Connections: 2 x HDMI, 2 x USB, Ethernet
Great if you're looking for one adapter gives you a range of functionality including ethernet and two HDMIs.

Apple USB-C Digital AV Multiport Adapter, £75
Connections: USB, HDMI, USB-C
Good if you want to connect a HDMI display and USB device at the same time.

Belkin USB-C to HDMI Adapter, £49.95
Connections: HDMI
Good if you want to connect a HDMI display.

Belkin USB-C to VGA Adapter, £27.95
Connections: VGA
Good if you have an old display that connects using VGA.

Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) to Thunderbolt 2 Adapter, £49
Connections: Thunderbolt 2. also compatible with Thunderbolt 1
Good if you want to connect an Apple Thunderbolt Display. This does not support DisplayPort's like the Apple LED Cinema Display.

Apple USB-C to SD Card Reader, £39
Connections: SD Card Reader

Satechi Aluminium USB-C Multiport Pro Adapter, £64.95
Connections: HDMI, USB-A, USB-C, micro and SD card access
Great if you're looking for one adapter gives you a range of functionality including SD card readers.

Belkin USB-C to Gigabit Ethernet Adapter, £27.95
Connections: Ethernet ( RJ-45 Port Female Ports)

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