Belkin Cable-Free USB Hub: The Review.

Design, Gadgets, Useful Things by Richard

I’ve been using the Belkin Cable-Free USB Hub for a couple of weeks now, and it’s a pretty useful device, although it does have its quirks. Recently I upgraded to a much larger desk and decided to rearrange the office at the same time… less stuff on my desk, more shelves… just eliminating clutter in general. I ended up putting the shelving and filing cabinet on the other side of the room, so I’d have a lot more space to move around on the desk side of the room. I’ve got a 24 inch LCD, a 17 inch LCD, Audioengines (a rather large pair of excellent-sounding speakers), a lamp, 2 keyboards, 2 mice, a wireless audio transmitter for some speakers I have in the living room, a weather watcher, my MacBook Pro, and a couple of other gadgets. I decided I didn’t want to have my iPod, my girlfriend’s Zen W, my Blackjack and our printer on my desk. Even though this is a large desk, it’s packed pretty full, as you can see above, and there’s just no room for everything to fit and still leave me space to work with. I decided it’d be a great task for the Cable-Free hub, so I set up the transmitter on top of one of my speakers (Belkin recommends that you use the included stand for this) and then connected all of our device cables to the Cable-Free hub, which I placed on top of a bookshelf on the other side of the room.

So far it’s worked out well. The data transfer speed seems to be a bit slower than directly connected USB, but it hasn’t really affected me, as I generally just plug in my devices and let them sync overnight. Every now and then it’ll lose connection for no apparent reason, but it’s quick to reestablish it. I don’t think that’s a problem with the hub, it’s just the nature of a wireless system to lose connection from time to time.

In conclusion, the Cable-Free hub is a pretty awesome solution for getting your USB peripherals/devices off of your desk and out of the way. It’d also be useful in a more mobile situation where you like to drag your laptop around your home but want to still be able to access devices such as hard drives or printers from wherever you are in the house.


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