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My thoughts on using the ICY BOX Universal Laptop Docking Station Dual HDMI (2024)

My thoughts on using the ICY BOX Dual HDMI Docking Station with Windows and Mac for work and some gaming.
Tommy Slater

Cartesian Mathematics Foundation


January 7, 2024


The ICY BOX Docking Station is quite easy to use, even for someone like me who isn’t always confident with new technology. The setup was quick and didn’t involve any complicated steps. It has quite been useful in my home office, as it allows me to connect all my devices in one place. I have used it with both a Windows laptop and a Mac. There were a few issues, but overall the experience has been smooth - more on this below.


Property Value Property Value
Brand ICY BOX Color black
Hardware Interface USB Compatible Devices USB C, Windows XP, HDMI, Chrome, Windows, Mac
Total USB Ports 6 Product Dimensions 3.07”L x 7.17”W x 1.18”H
Number of Ports 4 Item Weight 0.22 Kilograms
Total HDMI Ports 2 Wattage 35 watts


Setup Simplicity and Compatibility

A sleek black docking station with multiple cables connected

Setting up the ICY BOX Docking Station was surprisingly straightforward. I anticipated a complex process, and I’m someone who usually hesitates when it comes to tech setups – but this experience has altered my perspective. Here’s a quick rundown of my setup experience:

  • Installation: The driver installation is the critical first step. I ensured that the latest DisplayLink drivers were in place before connecting, which paved the way for a smooth setup.

  • Connectivity: With support for both Windows and Mac operating systems, versatility is a strong point.

  • Plug and Play: After driver setup, it was as easy as plugging in the docking station and watching my devices sync up without a hitch.

However, there were a few caveats that I came across. For example, Windows users seem to fare better in terms of maximized compatibility and number of monitors supported. Mac users, on the other hand, should take note of the version limitations and the need to install additional software.

Here’s a more detailed look at the pros and cons:


  • Windows and Mac Compatible: The docking station works with a broad spectrum of operating systems, including older ones like Windows XP, up to the latest versions.

  • Multiple Monitors: You can connect up to 6 monitors on Windows, which is a productivity dream.

  • Ease of Use: Literally, plug in the USB cable, and you’re set. The USB 3.0 connection simplifies what could have been a headache.

  • Versatile Port Selection: The 6 USB ports alongside other inputs like HDMI and Ethernet provide extensive connectivity options.


  • Display Issues on Mac: I ran into trouble with my MacBook—particularly with macOS 10.13.4. Always check for updates or patches if you’re a Mac user.

  • Intermittent Mouse Freezes: Though rare, I noticed occasional mouse lags, which can be distracting.

Despite the potential drawbacks like reduced USB data transfer rates and certain compatibility issues with newer Apple M1 hardware, the benefits have largely outweighed the negatives in my use. The physical setup is almost non-existent – I just chose my spot, connected the devices, and was up and running in no time.

The ICY BOX Docking Station has earned a place in my home office setup. Its ability to streamline connectivity and make my workspace more manageable is undeniable. It allows me to tie in all my peripherals into one central hub, making the transition between my Mac and Windows laptops seamless. It’s not perfect—no piece of tech is—but when it comes to an easy-to-use, versatile docking solution, this certainly fits the bill.

Design and Build Quality

The docking station in a minimalist office setup

When I first came across the ICY BOX Docking Station, its design and build quality immediately caught my eye. The sleek all-black construction has a versatile and modern appearance that blends nicely into my home office setup. Structurally, it’s robust without being too bulky, which is a plus for those of us who prefer a more minimalistic desk environment.

Here are some notable physical attributes:

  • Upright Design: Takes up less desk space and offers easy access to all ports.

  • Slim Profile: Makes it an unobtrusive addition to any setup.

  • Weight: At 0.22 kilograms, it’s lightweight yet feels sturdy.

  • Dimensions: The compact size of 3.07”L x 7.17”W x 1.18”H ensures it doesn’t dominate my workspace.

Despite being impressed by its form factor, I did have some reservations. Initially, the thought of such a slim device supporting numerous ports and handling multiple monitors seemed overly ambitious. However, after putting it to use, the device held up well, offering six USB ports, two HDMI ports for my dual monitor setup, and additional ports for networking and audio.

The 6 USB ports proved sufficient for my peripherals, though I did find the mix of USB 3.0 and 2.0 slots a bit outdated, especially in an era where many devices favor USB-C connections. Nonetheless, for the majority of my devices, the connections were more than enough. In terms of video, the HDMI ports’ ability to handle resolutions up to 2048x1152 and even 2560x1440 on a single display was a pleasant surprise. This certainly caters to my need for clarity and a wide working canvas when dealing with intricate projects.

Regarding the Wattage, the listed 35 watts felt on point, ensuring that all connected devices operated smoothly without any hiccups. One slight drawback might be that the total HDMI ports are limited to two, but for my situation, this worked just perfectly.

A point worth mentioning is the undetachable USB cable, which is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it simplifies the setup, reducing the number of cables running across my desk. On the other, it also means that if the cable fails, it could lead to potential issues, especially since the use of a third-party cable is not recommended.

On a side note, while the overall build quality is impressive, I was initially worried about the durability of such a compact device. Yet after several months of daily use, the ICY BOX Docking Station has shown no signs of wear or diminished performance.

In short, considering its form factor, multitude of ports, and the elegance it brings to the table, I am content with its design and construction. It’s not without its minor drawbacks, but for anyone who appreciates a well-built and aesthetically pleasing docking station, the ICY BOX USB 3.0 Universal Docking Station delivers where it counts.

Performance in Multitasking

A busy desk with dual monitors displaying graphs and coding software

In the quest for a seamless multitasking experience, the ICY BOX Docking Station offers a myriad of features for productivity enthusiasts. My firsthand experience with this docking station reveals both its strengths and shortcomings when it comes to enhancing a workstation’s capabilities. Here’s a quick rundown in a Markdown list:


  • Dual HDMI ports provide the flexibility to connect up to two additional monitors.

  • Six total USB ports support a wide array of peripherals, facilitating an efficient multitasking environment.

  • A versatile design that accommodates both horizontal and vertical orientations to save desk space.

  • 5 Gbit/s USB 3.0 data transfer rates ensure rapid file operations.


  • Occasional mouse and keyboard lags on Windows might disrupt workflow.

  • Charging limitations as it cannot charge a laptop through the docking station.

  • Mixed compatibility with macOS, especially post 10.13.4, which can be inconvenient for some Mac users.

The ICY BOX proved to be a reliable companion when I connected my laptop and two external monitors. The crisp 2K resolution on a single monitor setup at 2560x1440 is a game-changer for video editing and detailed spreadsheet work. When using both HDMI ports, the resolution caps at 1080p, which still provides an adequate dual-monitor experience.

One of the standout features is the data transfer rate. With up to 5 Gbit/s on the USB 3.0 ports, I could move large files to an external drive in what felt like no time at all. This is crucial when juggling between complex projects that require the frequent transfer of data.

Despite these positives, there are some areas where the performance didn’t quite meet my expectations. While handling graphics-intensive applications, I noticed minor mouse and keyboard interruptions. Although not a frequent issue, it’s notable when precision is critical during peak multitasking.

Furthermore, the lack of laptop charging capability is a mild inconvenience, as I have to maintain a separate charger on my already crowded desk. For users who are accustomed to single-cable docking solutions that handle power and connectivity, this may be disappointing.

Mac users should be aware that while the device works wonders with Windows, the macOS experience can be hit or miss. Following the instruction perfectly, installing the needed DisplayLink drivers, is crucial to avoid unnecessary frustrations.

Despite the drawbacks, the ICY BOX Docking Station has proven to be a formidable tool for enhancing multitasking efforts. It allows for a substantial expansion of a laptop’s connectivity, even if it means you’ll need to keep your laptop’s power adapter close at hand. If you can navigate the initial setup and occasional quirks, the benefits of expanded display real estate and USB connectivity could significantly boost your productivity.

Tech Support and Reliability

Zoomed in view of the customer support webpage for the product

When it comes to tech support and the overall reliability of the ICY BOX Docking Station, my experience is a mixed bag—though it leans more toward the positive. The solid construction and broad compatibility with Windows and Mac systems make it an attractive choice for those looking to enhance their workspace. With that said, I have encountered a few hiccups along the way, which are important to consider.

Here’s a quick rundown of what stood out to me:

  • Reliability: Day-to-day performance is consistent, with issues being rare.

  • Tech Support: While the idea of a 2-year warranty is reassuring, actual support can be hit or miss, especially with email issues I’ve faced.

  • Compatibility: It supports a wide range of operating systems, but some, like Linux, are excluded.

  • Drivers: The need to install DisplayLink drivers can be a bit daunting for less tech-savvy users.

The Docking Station has been quite dependable for tasks like connecting multiple monitors and using various USB peripherals. On most days, it’s a seamless experience that has unquestionably boosted my efficiency. The range of USB ports and the simple setup are particularly great features that cater to both my work and personal laptops.

However, it’s not all perfect. I’ve had some trouble with tech support, notably an undeliverable email when trying to reach out for assistance. This isn’t to say that support is always problematic, but it is a potential obstacle if you’re in urgent need of help.

Additionally, while the station’s capabilities are extensive, it’s worth mentioning that it isn’t suitable for Linux users, which can be a sizable drawback for some. I also ran into issues while using it with a MacBook, which logged me out whenever connected—though this seems more like a software compatibility problem rather than a fault with the docking station itself.

To be precise, here are my thoughts mapped out:


  • A robust build ensures longevity.

  • Multi-system compatibility increases its versatility.

  • Variety of ports caters to almost all connection needs.

  • Enhances productivity by allowing the connection of multiple displays.


  • Inconsistent tech support can leave users in the lurch.

  • Does not support charging the laptop through the dock, a slight inconvenience.

  • Some users may encounter driver-related issues or system incompatibilities.

In conclusion, the ICY BOX Docking Station is a solid investment for those in need of a versatile, performance-oriented solution for connecting multiple devices and monitors. Although there are potential challenges in tech support responsiveness and software hiccups—commonplace in the realm of tech gadgets—the benefits it brings to the table make it a worthy contender for your workspace arsenal. If you’re comfortable with installing drivers and possibly troubleshooting, you’ll likely find this docking station to be a valuable addition to your setup.