Back in December there was this Kickstarter campaign from a company called Sanho – they’ve presented a USB-C hub which will fit the new iPad Pro perfectly and offered a 50% discount for early backers (was about 60€ with taxes). Not having a new iPad back then I already knew that I’ll need a proper hub for my work.
I finally received my unit now and want to give a feedback of my first impressions. As a general note, I use the 12.9″ iPad Pro 2018 with 512GB. The hub comes in a case with different adapter plates for the different options of iPad cases. I am using a third party smart folio case which is like the Apple one but without the ridiculous pricing…
The build quality of the hub is very high, it feels like it comes from Apple itself. The space gray finish matches the iPad perfectly, once it is plugged in, it almost melts with the iPad to one unit. Most of the hubs I’ve found have a short USB-C cable before the hub itself. This isn’t nice on iPad, the hub dangles around while plugged in and I am not sure how long this works without breaking the USB-C port. I also use a different hub since day one which has one of the cables and it always feels kind of “naaah” when plugged in. The HyperDrive on the other side fits perfectly on the iPad and feels safe. On the hub itself are plenty of ports:
- 1x HDMI for video output up to 4K30Hz
- 1x Micro SD
- 1x SD
- 1x USB-A
- 1x 3.5mm headphone jack
- 1x USB-C for charging
The headphone jack is one of the most important ports for me. Apple chose to remove it on the iPad itself (I really don’t understand this decision) so if you want to plug in your high quality headphones so either need a 3.5mm jack to USB-C adapter or a hub which comes with a jack. Hubs with a headphone jack are kind of rare, I did not find any without making a big compromise. I make a lot of music with iPad, so the flawless use of high quality audio gear is very important for me.
I’ve used the hub for about a week now for photo editing (SD file import) and music production (headphone jack and USB-A for my audio interface and MIDI controller) and don’t have any complaints. Even at the full price this hub is highly recommended if you are looking for a high quality accessory that matches your iPad Pro. I don’t call it a minus but when I am using an audio interface and MIDI controller at the same time I could need a second USB-A port. For this scenario I use my other hub (the one with this annoying short cable). Another USB-A port on the HyperDrive would make it bigger so it would cover the speakers, so it is completely reasonable why Sanho went with one.