New Plugable USB 3.0 Universal Docking Station (with Dual Monitor Support)

We’re excited to announce the launch of our newest UD-3900 USB 3.0 Universal Laptop / Tablet docking station, adding an additional HDMI port to our UD-3000 docking station, currently the #1 selling Laptop Docking Station on Amazon.com.

Using DisplayLink’s top-of-the-line DL-3900 chipset, this unit offers all the functionality the DisplayLink chip has to offer, plus the latest VL812 USB 3.0 hub chipset from Via Labs for extra available USB ports.

Here are the two models side-by-side

Plugable UD-3000Plugable UD-3900
$99.99$129
New!

We’re excited to add this integrated, more cost-effective option for getting two extra displays (plus lots of other functions), all via a single USB 3.0 cable.

For both of these models, support is currently for Windows only. DisplayLink has new Mac drivers version 2.1 coming in future weeks which will allow us to update our recommendation for Mac.

And if you have any questions at all, please feel free to comment below or email us at support@plugable.com – we’re happy to help. Thanks!

Where to Buy

46 comments on “New Plugable USB 3.0 Universal Docking Station (with Dual Monitor Support)”

    • Bernie Thompson Bernie Thompson Reply

      Thanks for asking! We don’t have any more specific information about DisplayLink and Apple’s schedule. What we’d recommend for Mac users is waiting until the driver is actually out before buying the unit for Mac. The driver version will be DisplayLink’s Mac 2.1 driver. Apple needs to approve and sign it before it can be released. And Mavericks / 10.9 has some fixes that are required for essential functions (e.g. USB 3.0 audio). So there are a lot of pieces – we’ll announce when we see that they’ve all come together!

      • Dax Reply

        Hello Bernie – does this dock now support Mac OS X Mavericks since display link driver 2.2 is available?

        • Bernie Thompson Bernie Thompson Reply

          Hi Dax – Unfortunately, we still can’t recommend it beyond 10.8.5. In 10.9, if using HDMI monitor in the mix, OS X will revert to mirror. And if using > 1 USB display, monitor configurations will be lost on reboot. These are OS X issues that affect all software using OS X’s secondary monitor APIs. Sorry for the bad news!

  1. Richard Reply

    Does the UD-3900 work with the latest VMware ESXi 5.1?

    Specifically, I’d like to pass the UD-3900 from ESXi host to a Windows 7 64-bit guest virtual machine. This would allow me to use a guest vm without a 2nd computer for remote access when I’m in front of the server.

    If it works reliably with ESXi 5.1 (or upcoming ESXi 5.5), I’m sure the UD-3900 would sell like hotcakes. Just search the VMware forums for all the posts regarding the pitfalls of PCI passthrough with graphics cards and you’ll see why something like UD-3900 would be a perfect fit.

    • Bernie Thompson Bernie Thompson Reply

      Hi Richard,

      Thanks for asking! Unfortunately, no it won’t work. The reason is the DisplayLink driver (which in this case, would be running inside the VMware guest OS) must be able to tie in tightly with the primary graphics driver / GPU on the system. And that only works with Intel, nVidia, and ATI graphics drivers — not the “virtual” graphics driver in the VMware guest OS. DisplayLink’s driver won’t install.

      We’ve thought about ways to solve this problem, and do believe a new type of product based on similar hardware could do it. But we haven’t embarked on this engineering effort yet. If you have pointers to particular forums that are indicative of the demand, that will give us more to think about!

      Best wishes and thanks!
      Bernie

      • bchoor Reply

        Bernie, quick follow-up on this. I have an X10SLM-F motherboard and looking to upgrade to an E3-1265V3 processor which has the Intel HD. In esxi 5.5, if I am able to passthrough (vt-d) the gpu, would this work? Any thoughts are appreciated. Just a quick note, that the motherboard does have a VGA but I don’t believe is linked to the Intel HD gpu.

        • Joshua Henry Joshua Henry Reply

          Unfortunately this is not a scenario we have test but it is going to depend on how VT-D pass-through is handled. Most likely the Windows VM client virtual GPU driver will not be compatible with DisplayLink.

  2. tmar Reply

    Promotion code 63P25IGM did not work at Amazon. Wanted to buy UD-3900 USB 3.0… Did it expire? No expiration dates were given. Is there a different code?

    • Bernie Thompson Bernie Thompson Reply

      Thanks for asking all! The promotion code expired on 8/31. We’re working hard to stay in stock, so unfortunately it’s not likely to come back.

      • tmar Reply

        Yes, I originally was told of the promotion last week (on 9/3) by PLUGABLE support via email. I would have purchased last week, but was pressed for time and with no pending expiration date, I waited till this week. I think you guys should honor promotion your support said was “current” last week and without an expiration date.

  3. ppeters Reply

    Hi, if we bought the UD-3900 and took it back overseas, will it work in say Australia (Australia uses 220V 50 Hz). Thanks in advance.

    • Bernie Thompson Bernie Thompson Reply

      Yes, no problem – the power adapter itself will handle that. You’ll just need plug converters as usual. Thanks for asking!

  4. rob Reply

    Hi there, someone else asked my question but I see it has gone unanswered – does the device actually incorporate an external video card or does it rely upon the laptop’s (in my case) GPU to do the heavy lifting ?

    • Bernie Thompson Bernie Thompson Reply

      Hi Rob – Thanks for asking! All USB graphics adapters and docks on the market today use the main GPU and CPU for heavy lifting. If you’re interested, there are a couple of reasons: staying under USB’s available power for adapters, and because it’s higher performance to send final pixels over a bus like USB than it is to send all the vertices and textures that compose a typical 3D desktop or scene (which then get rendered down to a smaller amount of data as final pixels). Either way, though, there are compromises — which is why we don’t recommend USB adapters or docks for 3D gaming or full-length video — it’s best for normal application and web use where multiple monitors are a big productivity benefit.

  5. John Deidiker Reply

    Good morning. I have a Toshiba Encore 8 inch windows 8.1 tablet on preorder. Looked at your video embedded in the UMPCportal article. In it the UD 3000 was connected to a Dell Venue. Please provide the list of adapters and items needed to replicate what you were doing on the video. You mentioned the UD 300, a graphics adapter, the stand for the tablet and the micro usb adapter. Not sure if I missed something.

    • Joshua Henry Joshua Henry Reply

      Hello John,

      The adapters shown in our video are as follows:

      1) Our Plugable UD-3000 Universal Docking Station: http://plugable.com/products/ud-3000/

      If you want dual displays, our UD-3900 is the same but with one more built in USB graphics output:

      http://plugable.com/products/ud-3900/

      If you want to save some money since the Dell Venue 8 Pro’s USB port is USB 2.0, you can go with our USB 2.0 docking station for similar functionality as the UD-3000 at less cost:

      http://plugable.com/products/ud-160-a/

      2) We showed our USB3-VGA adapter. We used 3 of these to connect the additional 3 displays: http://plugable.com/products/usb3-vga

      But again, you can use any of our USB 2.0 graphics adapters (since the Venue doesn’t have USB 3.0), like the UGA-165:

      http://plugable.com/products/uga-165

      Note that you’ll need to connect all your USB devices off a powered hub or dock, or you’ll drain your Venue 8’s battery quickly. Another hub that will handle this well is our USB2-HUB-AG7:

      http://plugable.com/products/usb2-hub-ag7

      Note that none of the products in the video or above will charge the Venue 8 Pro — charging is on the same USB Micro-B port, but can’t be done while using standard USB hubs or docks.

      Lastly you’ll need to separately buy a USB OTG cable as shown in the video. You will also need to confirm your Toshiba tablet supports OTG.

      Please don’t hesitate to let us know of other questions.

      Thanks again for contacting Plugable support and best wishes!

      Joshua Henry
      Plugable Technologies

      • Russ Reply

        Hi Joshua,

        I would like to run three displays off the Dell Venue 8 Pro and I would like this to be my main setup for work.

        If I were to go with the following setup:

        Dell Venue 8 Pro
        Plugable UD-3900 USB 3.0 Universal Docking Station
        Plugable UGA-165 USB to VGA/DVI/HDMI

        Are you recommending that I get a powered USB hub in addition to the USB ports on the docking station in order to save the Dell’s battery life?

        Also, once I have the optimal setup, are you able to say from experience how long I can expect to get out of the Dell before a charge is needed? I intend to use this for browsing, general productivity (excel, word processing, powerpoint etc) and web based applications. I am concerned that the tablet won’t last the working day….

        Finally, what would be the max resolution you would recommend for the three displays to get the most out of this?

        Thanks
        Russ

        • Joshua Henry Joshua Henry Reply

          Hello Russ,

          I would not recommend running more than two monitors with a maximum resolution of 1920×1080. If you need three monitors I would recommend instead of the UGA-165 to go with the UGA-3000. Even though the Venue cannot take advantage of USB 3.0 speed, the USB 3.0 based DisplayLink adapters are more efficient even over USB 2.0.

          With three monitors and the kind of use you are planning, I honestly would not expect to achieve more than about 3-4 hours from the Venue and that is being generous. The more monitors you add, the harder the CPU/GPU in the Venue has to work to render images on them which will cut into battery life.

          If you are going to be using one of our docks, you will not need a powered hub as the dock contains a powered hub. Of course you will need an OTG cable as well to connect the dock (I didn’t see it in your list so I want to make sure you are aware).

          Thank you,

          Joshua Henry
          Plugable Technologies

          • Russ

            Joshua,

            Thanks so much for your reply.

            Do you see any scenario where I could use the Dell Venue 8 Pro as my main work desktop device? Is there anyway to power this without detaching it from the dock?

            If not, do you know of another small form Windows 8.1 tablet that can be powered in this way and is compatible with Plugable technologies?

            Thanks again
            Russ

  6. John Deidiker Reply

    Thanks for your reply. Based on your reply, I am now thinking of switching to the Dell Venue 8. My current monitor has a VGA connection. Will the VGA connect directly to the UD3900 or will I need an adapter? Another question as well. I currently have a Fujistsu LH531 Lifebook laptop running Windows 7. Can I switch between which computer is connected to the UD3900 without issues?

  7. John Deidiker Reply

    Disregard the first question about the vga connection. I looked further, but still need the question about the laptop.

  8. Luke Reply

    Will the Plugable UD-3900 work with the Surface Pro 2 & two Dell 2405FPWs? The Dell monitors have a max res of 1920×1200. Can I use 1 DVI connector with one monitor and a HDMI to DVI cable on the UD-3900 for the other monitor port?

    • Bernie Thompson Bernie Thompson Reply

      Hi Luke – With that extra HDMI to DVI cable (so both the HDMI and DVI ports of the UD-3900 are in use), that should be no problem. If you do hit any problems at all (1920×1080 is much more common than 1920×1200), just let us know – we’ll be happy to help. Thanks!

  9. Arthur De Santis Reply

    Hi there!
    I have just bought one of this dock station (UD-3900), which will still arrive only on friday (november 15). I am planning to use this with a Dell Venue Pro 8, in order to have a “work station” with a flat display, wifi keyboard and mouse and a external hard drive, all powered by the Dell Venue Pro 8.

    But now, reading some reviews around I have noted that using this dock with a USB 2.0 device (which is the case for Dell Venue Pro 8), the display performance is not exactly great (some people are saying that it is not even acceptable at all).

    Could you please confirm this, and maybe provide some kind of “workaround”? There is a video on youtube where a Venue Pro 8 is handling 4 displays, but it is not possible to see what is the resolution used at that demo. With you have any video where I can see the performance for video output using a USB 2.0 I will definitely appreciate.

    Thank you so much and greatings from Brazil!

    • Bernie Thompson Bernie Thompson Reply

      Hi Arthur – What you see in the video is all performance over USB 2.0 (because the Venue 8 Pro itself is USB 2.0 only, so all USB 3.0 devices fall back to USB 2.0). Each of the 4 monitors in the video is 1280×1024. But generally, the performance would be lower but still good for normal application use up to higher modes like 1920×1080.

      The bigger limitation for real-world use is that the Venue 8 Pro won’t be charging while the dock is in use.

      I know it’s tricky buying from Brazil – customs taxes are expensive and not it’s possible to return. So I understand the concern. Hope that background helps!

  10. Thulsi Reply

    I plan to buy a Lenovo Thinkpad Yoga 2 Pro which has a high resolution of 3200×1800, but very few ports. Will this UD-3900 USB 3.0 Universal Laptop / Tablet docking station work with the Thinkpad Yoga 2 Pro. I am particularly keen to have a dual monitor and Ethernet connectivity in addition to be able to connect a Keyboard, mouse and USB speaker/microphone.

    • Bernie Thompson Bernie Thompson Reply

      Thanks for asking! We expect no problems with the Yoga 2 Pro: It has a great GPU, and Intel HD4400 GPU. Is a good match for USB graphics for multiple monitors. If any problems do come up, please just email us at support@plugable.com. We’ll be happy to help. Thanks!

  11. John Deidiker Reply

    I currently have a Fujistsu LH531 Lifebook laptop running Windows 7. Can I switch between connecting the Fujitsu running Windows 7 and the Dell Venue 8 Pro with running windows 8.1 to the UD3900 without issues?

  12. smbdybydm Reply

    Will this work with a Lenovo Yoga Pro 2 and the 2560×1440 Yamakasi Catleap 27″ DVI only monitor that does not upscale? I would have to use a HDMI to DVI adapter, but will that do 2560×1440? Also, since the Catleap does not upscale, will this scale for me?

  13. JP Reply

    Hi, and thanks for the Q&A! I’m trying to connect 2 brand-new Dell M3800 laptops, with nVidia Quadro K1100M (v.333.25), using a UD-3000 w/up-to-date drivers. No luck on video or LAN so far. I am also expecting a UD-3900 to arrive for testing.

    Do you know whether either or both Plugables can support the M3800, or or we out of luck here with this particular Plugable-Dell mashup?

    Thanks for all insight.

    • Bob Boerner Bob Boerner Reply

      Hi JP,

      Thanks for posting. At first glance it sounds like the video driver for your Quadro card may be the latest from Dell, but not the latest from Nvidia. The network issue can be more complicated. I would recommend contacting us via support@plugable.com so we can work with you directly. If you can also include the output from our diagnostic program –> http://plugable.com/support/plugdebug with your email that will let us know more details about the system.

      Thank you,

      Bob

  14. Bill Flynn Reply

    What are the odds I can plug two of these things into my laptop to get 4 monitors?

    • Bernie Thompson Bernie Thompson Reply

      Yes, absolutely, you can use the UD-3900 dock along with two UGA-3000 adapters to add 4 additional monitors over USB. This video shows doing it with a USB hub, but works exactly the same with a Dock (which is an integrated hub and graphics chip): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ncaCRHJvR8 Thanks for asking!

  15. Paolo Reply

    I have a Surface Pro 4 and a Plugable UD3900
    I am trying to connect two monitors a regular full HD over the DVI and a Ultra Wide (2560×1080) through the HDMI
    But, I am having problem with the Ultra Wide, which is not allowed me to set it over Full HD resolution.

    Thanks…

    • Bob Boerner Bob Boerner Reply

      Hi Paolo,

      Based on your description the dock is working as expected, and we do our best to call this out in our FAQ -> http://plugable.com/products/ud-3900#faq The dock can only support the 2560×1080 resolution over the HDMI output only when a single display is connected. If you attach a second display the resolution on both the HDMI and DVI output will be limited to 1920×1200. If you disconnect the monitor from the DVI port temporarily you should be able to verify this is the case.

      If this limitation negates your need for the dock we certainly don’t want you stuck with a product that doesn’t meet your needs, and we offer a 30-day no-hassle return policy via the automated system at http://amazon.com/returns

      If you have any additional questions please reach out to us directly at support@plugable.com and mention ticket 132676 and we will be happy to help.

      Thank you,

      Bob
      Plugable Technologies
      http://www.plugable.com/support

Leave a Reply