Plugable UD-6950Z Dual 4K Display HDMI or DisplayPort Universal Docking Station For Windows

Features

  • FLEXIBLE EXPANDABILITY – The Plugable UD-6950Z provides dual HDMI and DisplayPort (DP++) outputs, Gigabit Ethernet, audio input/output & six USB 3.0 ports. Dual DisplayPort and HDMI ports support two displays up to 4K@60Hz when using DisplayPort 1.2 or HDMI 2.0 displays and cables. Also supports popular lower resolution modes such as 3440×1440, 2560×1440, 1920×1080 (1080P) and more
  • DUAL 4K MONITORS – Equipped with dual HDMI and DisplayPort ports, each supporting resolutions up to 3840×2160. Lower resolutions such 1920×1080 (1080p) are also supported
  • COMPATIBILITY – Docking station compatible with Windows 10, 8.x, and 7 systems. Plug and play driver installation via Windows Update. Not supported are Surface RT, macOS, and Linux. Wired Ethernet supports Gigabit speed. Dock does not charge host PC
  • RECOMMENDED USE – For use with web and productivity software; not recommended for gaming. Cannot be mixed with non-DisplayLink USB adapters. DisplayPort connections not supported. Does not support HDCP, will not playback encrypted or copy-protected content
  • 2 YEAR WARRANTY – We love our Plugable products, and hope you will too. All of our products are backed with a 2 year limited parts and labor warranty as well as Seattle-based email support
  • Description

    The Plugable USB Dual 4K HDMI or DisplayPort Display Universal Laptop Docking Station (UD-6950Z) is a one-stop upgrade that multiplies the productivity, performance, and power of your Windows tablet, laptop, or desktop.

    The UD-6950Z docking station is based on technology from DisplayLink that provides the ability to connect up to two additional monitors and up to nine additional accessories to a supported Windows system, all through a single USB 3.0 cable. The docking station provides the following features:

  • 2x HDMI 2.0 video output ports and 2x DisplayPort 1.2 video output ports for flexibility in connecting up to 2x external monitors. Support for resolutions up to 3840×2160 @ 60Hz
  • A Gigabit Ethernet (10/100/1000) network port that also supports 10/100 Ethernet
  • 1x 3.5 mm combination audio jack for headphones, headsets or external speakers
  • 2x front-mounted USB 3.0 ports for SuperSpeed USB devices (such as an external storage drive)
  • 4x rear-mounted USB 3.0 ports for SuperSpeed USB devices (such as keyboards, mice and printers)
  • System Compatibility

  • Windows 10, 8.x, 7 drivers can be automatically installed via Windows Update (with an existing Internet connection) or can be downloaded from Plugable
  • CPU: Intel SkyLake i3 or Intel Core i7, AMD A10 at 2.0GHz or better
    Graphics Processor: Intel HD 4000, AMD Radeon HD 8650, NVidia GeForce 7xxM or better
    Memory: 8GB RAM
  • Ethernet port requires full-duplex network infrastructure
  • Updated USB 3.0 host controller drivers and graphics drivers suggested for best performance and compatibility
  • Cannot be mixed with non-DisplayLink USB graphics adapters and drivers (e.g. MCT, j5, Fresco or SMSC)
  • macOS, ARM-based versions of Windows (Surface RT), and Linux/Unix are not supported
  • Monitor & Application Compatibility

  • Supports dual 4K monitors up to 3840×2160 @ 60Hz
  • To achieve 4K@60Hz each connected monitor and cable must support the desired resolution and refresh rate.
  • Does not support local applications or network services that require High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection (HDCP), and will not allow for playback of encrypted DVD, Blu-ray disks or other copy-protected content.
  • Suggested for use with basic office productivity software and web browsers.
  • Not recommended for gaming use due to potential performance and/or compatibility issues.
  • Power Information & Items included in the box

  • Functions as a USB hub only; may not provide sufficient power for some tablets and smartphone devices
  • Does not provide power to attached host laptop or tablet; the host system will still require its own separate power cable
  • 40W (20V, 2A) power adapter (US AC Wall Outlet Plug, 100-240V 50/60Hz)
  • 1x USB 3.0 Type-A male to Type-B male cable and 1x USB 3.1 Type-C to Type-B cable (both three feet in length)
  • Quick-installation guide
  • Required driver is available by download, drivers CD is not included
  • Support

    Feel free to contact us directly at support@plugable.com if you have any questions. Whether you’ve purchased the UD-6950Z and need support or you’re considering a purchase and would like help understanding the docking station’s features, we’re here to help.

    Operating System and Driver Details


    WINDOWS VERSION COMPATIBILITY:
    Drivers can be installed automatically via Windows Update with support for Windows 10, 8.1, 7, and XP. Not compatible with ARM-based Windows RT/Surface RT. Note that Microsoft limits multiple display support in Windows 7 “Starter” Edition to mirroring screens. Even though drivers are provided automatically, we recommend visiting the Plugable driver webpage for the most recent drivers and other information.

    DisplayLink's Windows drivers make use of the main GPU for rendering, and require an Intel, nVidia, ATI/AMD primary graphics driver supporting WDDM to be installed. Most systems since Windows 7 satisfy this requirement.

    Please note that USB graphics adapters or docking stations not powered by DisplayLink technology, such as Magic Control Technology (MCT), Samsung Central Station (SMSC), and Fresco Logic cannot be used on your system simultaneously with our DisplayLink-based products. Drivers for non-DisplayLink USB graphics adapters must be uninstalled from the host system before using our products The above list of 3rd-party technologies covers most known incompatibilities, but the same potential for incompatibility exists with any type of USB video device or screen mirroring/extension software. While it is impossible to create an exhaustive list of such software or devices, the following have also been found to be incompatible:

    1. Samsung SideSync
    2. Kramer VIA ConnectPro

    MAC COMPATIBILITY:
    Mac systems are not currently supported. However, significant progress has been made by both Apple and DisplayLink resolving interoperability issues. We will continue to evaluate compatibility and and update this section as things evolve.

    LINUX COMPATIBILITY:
    Linux is not supported for this device.

    TOUCHSCREEN COMPATIBILITY:
    Some touchscreens are compatible, it is dependent upon whether the touchscreen monitor software supports multiple monitor setups. Please contact your monitor manufacturer to determine if multiple monitor setups are supported.

    HDMI TV Compatibility

    Our DisplayLink-based USB video adapters and docking stations that offer a HDMI output are compatible with most HDMI TVs. To use a TV as a monitor via our products, the TV must support EDID, the extended display identification standard for communicating monitor capabilities to a PC.

    Plugable DisplayLink-based USB video adapters and docking stations do not support High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection (also known as HDCP). HDCP is a protection mechanism employed to prevent perfect digital copies of protected media. The details of how the system works at a low level are complex but put simply, in order to play back protected content from physical media (such as a Blu-Ray disc) or a digital service (such as Netflix, Amazon Instant Video, etc.) all devices connected in the ‘chain’ must support the HDCP protection mechanism. Since our devices do not support HDCP, the playback of these types of media will not work.

    Performance Tuning

    If you’re experiencing slowness or latency on your UD-6950Z connected display:

    • Make sure the dock is connected to a USB 3.0 port within your computer.
    • If USB 3.0 is not available, play 3D games and videos on a display that isn’t connected via USB.
    • When all else fails, reduce your USB-connected monitor’s screen resolution via the Windows display control panel.

    By reducing the amount of data that needs to be compressed and sent over USB, you’ll increase responsiveness.

    Gaming

    Our DisplayLink-based USB graphics adapters and docking stations are "virtual" devices where much of the heavy lifting is done by the host system's CPU, by hooking into the graphics stack. The DirectX and OpenGL APIs used by many games assume direct hardware access (a PCIe graphics card).  DisplayLink's drivers attempt to emulate as much of the functionality as possible, which is why some 3D functionality (like that needed for desktop and apps) works.

    We don't recommend running games with DisplayLink-based USB graphics products, because this emulation cannot be perfect, and often APIs used by games (DirectX and OpenGL) prevent DisplayLink devices from functioning properly. Even without specific compatibility problems, performance will always be a challenge - the extra CPU work required for USB graphics will be a source of reduced frame rates and problems. Normal desktop and application use are fine because they don't push the system as hard as a 3D games will.

    Common problems experienced when trying to run a game on a USB graphics adapter include:

    • Games not launching
    • Games crashing
    • Screen flickering
    • Screen going black

    Docking Station Comparison

    FAQ

    Where can I download the user manual/quick start guide included in the box with the dock?
    The most current documentation is available here

    Can the UD-6950Z charge the host computer battery?
    The UD-6950Z is unable to provide charging capability to the host system.

    I am only getting 4K@30Hz on my display when connected to the dock. How can I get 4K@60Hz?
    There are several different reasons why a 4K display would be limited to 4K@30Hz. We would recommend first checking:

  • Monitor specifications to ensure that it can support 4K@60Hz from the desired input port. DisplayPort input ports must meet the DP 1.2 specification, and HDMI inputs must meet the HDMI 2.0 specification.
  • Ensure that the DisplayPort video cable is DP 1.2 compliant or the HDMI video cable is HDMI 2.0 compliant.
  • If both the system’s GPU and the monitor claim support for 4K@60Hz, please check the Windows Advanced display adapter settings to ensure that 60Hz is available and selected from the drop down list. If 30Hz is not listed and you are connected to our adapter with a DP cable, please ensure that the monitor has DP 1.2 ports. Some 4K monitors do not automatically enable DP 1.2 automatically and it must be enabled within the menu settings. Please consult the monitor’s manual and check the monitor’s menu settings to see if there is an applicable DP 1.2 setting.

    I have never used a laptop or desktop with more than one monitor before. Now that my Windows system has more than one display I am not sure how things are supposed to work or how to change them. Do you have any videos that can help?
    We have a produced a series of short videos that introduce the concepts of multi-monitor setups, how to make changes to the way things behave and how to solve common problems. The direct links to the videos are:

    I installed the dock on my laptop and everything works well with the laptop lid open. However, when I close the laptop lid the monitors connected to the dock turn off and the laptop shuts down. How do I fix this?

    Windows has special power management settings that control what happens when the laptop lid is closed. If this happening, these settings need to be changed. Please right-click on the Start button and select ‘Power Options’ from the menu.

    From the choices present on the left-hand side of the Power Options window, please click on ‘Choose what closing the lid does’. ** Important note – if you are running the Creators Update (or newer) to Windows 10, you will have click on the ‘Additional power settings’ option to access this window **

    Make sure the setting for ‘When I close the lid’ under the ‘Plugged In’ column is set to ‘Do Nothing’. Click the ‘Save Changes’ button and restart the system, making sure that the laptop’s power adapter is also connected, and test the behavior again.

    If I add the dock to my system to add additional monitors, does that prevent any of my system’s built-in video outputs from working? For example, if I connect the unit to my Surface Pro 4 tablet, does that prevent the built-in mini-DisplayPort output from working?
    No, the docking station’s presence on your system will not preclude the use of any of your system’s built-in video outputs.

    Does the docking station support audio pass through to my display with built-in speaker?
    Yes, if your display has built in speakers and are connected to our dock via DisplayPort or HDMI, audio should be sent to the display when the Plugable Audio device is set as the Default Playback Device within Windows’ Sound settings.

    When I have two displays with built-in speakers connected to the dock audio is sent to both displays. Is this expected and how do I resolve this?
    This is expected because DisplayLink has enabled this functionality to send audio to both connected displays. As a workaround, we recommend muting the display from which you do not want audio to be playing.

    I have headphones or speakers connected to the analog audio output jack on the front of the dock, but no sound is coming out. How do I fix this?
    The first thing to check when this happens is that the default Playback device is set correctly within Windows. We have a short video that shows how to do this here

    What does the blue LED on the Plugable UD-6950Z indicate?
    The blue LED indicates that the Plugable UD-6950Z is receiving power from the adapter.

    The blue power LED is flashing and my dock doesn’t work, what is wrong?
    That the blue power light blinks indicates the unit is not getting the power it needs to function properly. The first things to check in that case are as follows:

    • That the wall power outlet (or power strip) is working properly. Switching to another outlet or power strip can sometimes help
    • That the ‘prong’ that attaches to the power adapter and provides the blades that insert into the power outlet is securely attached
    • The power adapter is securely connected to the back of the docking station and to the wall power outlet
    • That the correct power adapter model for the dock is in use, as on rare occasions a different power adapter may be used accidentally. A picture of the correct power adapter for the UD-6950Z is shown below (click to enlarge)
    • What do the green and amber LEDs on the Ethernet port on the Plugable UD-6950Z indicate?
      The green link LED on the Ethernet port on the Plugable UD-6950Z is an indication that the Ethernet cable plugged into the port is live and it stays steady as long as the live cable is plugged in. The blinking amber activity LED is an indication that data is transferring through the port.  Both these LEDs will not light up when:

      • The DisplayLink driver for the dock has not installed properly or is corrupted
      • The Ethernet Cable plugged in is not live or is faulty
      • The network device to which the dock is connected only supports half-duplex communication (see next FAQ question below)
      • The port has failed

      When I plug an Ethernet cable into the dock, none of the LEDs light up, and I do not get assigned a valid IP address. What could be causing this?
      The Ethernet controller in the docking station requires a full duplex connection. Half duplex connections are not supported.

      Often, the issue is caused by older Ethernet hubs and/or cabling that do not support full duplex connections.

      Why does the “Display Color Calibration” tool in Windows seems to have no effect on the display(s) attached to my dock?
      The DisplayLink GPU does not support color calibration functionality. Most monitors have built-in controls that can be used to adjust the characteristics of the display, though we realize this approach may not be ideal in all cases. For environments that necessitate near-perfect color reproduction and display calibration capabilities via software, a dedicated graphics card is recommended.

      I use an application to change the color of my display to make it easier to see (like the f.lux application) but it doesn’t seem to affect the display I have connected to the dock. Why is this?
      As mentioned above, the DisplayLink driver does not currently support this type of color adjustment so applications like f.lux will not affect displays connected to the dock. DisplayLink (the maker of the chip in the dock and author of the driver) is working to add this functionality in the future. Please see this post on the DisplayLink website for more information and the current state of the project.

      While I can adjust the brightness of my internal laptop display or directly connected external display using the Windows Display Settings application, this option is grayed out and not available for the displays attached to the dock. Is something wrong?
      Windows does not have the ability to adjust the brightness of a USB-attached display, so the behavior is expected. We recommend making use of the display’s internal on-screen menu options to adjust the brightness.

      I cannot use my Intel, Nvidia, or AMD/ATI graphics utility to manage the monitors connected to the dock. Why is this?
      The utilities provided by Intel, Nvidia and AMD/ATI are designed to only recognize and work with graphics adapters made by their respective manufacturers and they will not recognize USB-attached displays connected to the dock. It is recommended to use the facilities built-in to Windows to manage the displays connected to the dock (‘Display Settings’ on Windows 10 and ‘Screen Resolution’ on Windows 8.1 and 7).

      Are Plugable USB video adapters or docking stations compatible with Touchscreens?
      Touchscreens that do not require drivers and use the host’s operating system’s built-in USB Human Interface drivers (HID) to record touch inputs can be made to work with our products, but Plugable does not provide support for doing so due the complexity of multi-monitor touch screen setups.

      Why does my wireless mouse or keyboard appear sluggish or not work properly when used with the dock?
      Most USB receivers for wireless mice and keyboards operate in the 2.4Ghz band. When connecting the receiver to any USB 3.0 port there is potential for interference that can affect the devices performance. The most effective method is to add a short USB 2.0 extension cable between the dock and the receiver to mitigate the effect, and many wireless keyboards and mice come with such a cable for this reason.

      Intel has a technical whitepaper on the behavior for those interested here:
      http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/io/universal-serial-bus/usb3-frequency-interference-paper.html

      We have written about this in more detail in our blog post on the subject here. For even more information please see Intel’s whitepaper here.

      When I connect the dock to my system, my internal Wi-Fi adapter stops working or suffers from poor performance. Why is this happening?
      There are several factors that can cause this to happen, along with several potential fixes. Please see our blog post on the topic for more information.

      Can I use the dock in conjunction with a KVM switch?
      No, Plugable does not recommend or support using our dock with a traditional KVM switch. If you simply need to share the dock between two systems, the dock can be manually disconnected from the first system and then manually connected to the second system. For those that would like a more permanent solution that does not require disconnecting the unit, our USB 3.0 Sharing Switch can be used to share the dock between two systems (the dock can only be used by one system at a time).

      After the Windows Anniversary or Creators Update, applications that make use of OpenGL (like SketchUp for example) are not working properly and/or produce an error message when launched while the dock is connected to my system. Why is this happening and how do I fix this?

      Microsoft and DisplayLink (the maker of the chip in our dock and author of the driver) have identified a bug within the Windows 10 Anniversary and Creators Update. With the Anniversary or Creators Update to Windows 10, Microsoft has now integrated support for the DisplayLink technology used in our docking station into Windows itself, and in certain cases applications which make use of OpenGL may not work as expected.

      For example, the SketchUp application requires the use of graphics adapter that supports a standard known as OpenGL -> http://help.sketchup.com/en/article/114278

      In some instances, Windows mistakenly directs the tasks intended for the system’s internal graphics adapter (which does support OpenGL) to the DisplayLink-based docking station. Our docking station is not a traditional graphics adapter in and of itself (it relies on the CPU and internal graphics adapter to work), and this results in the incorrect behavior or error message. DisplayLink speaks to this issue directly here -> http://support.displaylink.com/knowledgebase/articles/942862-my-device-is-not-working-properly-on-windows-10-an (under the section ‘OPENGL 1.1 REPORTED INSTEAD OF 4.X’)

      Pending Microsoft fixing the issue within Windows itself, there are two possible workarounds. The first is to configure Windows to have the ‘Main’ display set to a display directly connected to your internal graphics adapter, whether that is an internal laptop display or another external display connected to one of the systems built-in video outputs (a quick guide to doing so is here -> https://youtu.be/7nnKztRZXsw).

      If that doesn’t prove a suitable workaround, booting the system without the dock connected, launching SketchUp (or any other OpenGL application), and then connecting the dock may also help.

      Where to Buy