Review: Dell HD22Q Dual Charge Dock
Docking stations are generally boring, functional products. But what if a docking station also had a built-in Qi wireless charger?
As an office drone for the past two decades, two statements about me are true. My soul has been slowly sucked from my body by fluorescent lighting, and I’ve always had a company laptop.
With that laptop comes a complicated mess of accessories, all brought together with a docking station.
Generally, the docking station is its own mess, but not the Dell HD22Q Dual Charge Dock. This is probably the cleanest, most compact docking station I’ve ever put my hands on.
The Dell HD22Q Dual Charge docking station changes the flatline expectation of what a docking station should be. This compact, multi-ported docking station comes with a twist: it’s also a wireless Qi charging station. If you are looking for a docking station under $300 that isn’t an unwieldy mess of cables and plugs, the Dell HD22Q fits the bill.
It calls itself a dual charge dock rather than a docking station because it’s a laptop docking station with a wireless charging station.
If you have a Qi-enabled smartphone or earbuds, you can charge it on this dock. Honestly, the form factor of the Dell HD22Q is no bulkier than most charging stands.
Remember those docking stations that were the size of a cookbook with more ethernet and VGA ports than anyone could need? This is not that.
What do you need from a docking station? You need ports. Tons of ports. The more ports, the merrier. With the Dell HD22Q, you can plug in two 4K monitors simultaneously.
You’ll have to use both the DisplayPort 4.1 connection and the HDMI 2.1 port simultaneously, but most monitors have multiple input selections.
The HDMI port can support up to a 4K HDR 120Hz monitor. That’s nice, but the one your office gave you was outmoded in 1998, so you’ll have to get a VGA to HDMI converter.
Aside from the display ports, you get four USB-A 3.2 Gen 1 ports and a USB-C 3.2 Gen 2 with PowerDelivery 3.0 port. That means that along with having a USB-C port, you can use it to charge things.
There’s also an RJ45 ethernet port. If you are working in an office (gross, go remote, it’s so much better), then there is probably a yellow ethernet cable dangling somewhere for you to plug in.
Your desk, whether you work at home or the office, is likely a cluttered mess. Paperclips everywhere, Post-it notes hanging from your monitors.
There’s a maze of cables and piles of vapes, dip cans, loose change, and Sharpies. Or is that just my desk? There’s also a fidget spinner, two vapes, more binder clips, a KVM switch, multiple phones and empty Monster cans.
Regardless, a compact docking station fits right in. Literally. It literally fits right in. Well, I had to shove my speakers around and move one of the multiple USB hubs, but that’s beside the point.
The point is that the Dell HD22Q is not the bulky docking station of yesteryear. When I opened the box, I didn’t even realize it was a docking station.
It’s got the form factor of a simple charging stand
The in-line ports are designed to keep cables organized. The compact form factor matters as docking stations are generally used for on-the-go work.
There’s even a power button on the dock to wake up your laptop. Its small footprint means that you have more space for coffee cups and perhaps even an external keyboard.
If you are using external monitors, you may as well go full PC.
The Dell HD22Q allows for that by minimizing the amount of desk space it needs to operate. Dell knows your Formica desk has limited real estate.
One thing you might not expect from a docking station is the ability to be something else. Most docking stations are clunky pieces of metal and plastic that barely fit in your laptop bag.
This one has a built-in Qi charger. While Dell recommends its own products for optimal use, any Qi-enabled device can be charged up on the docking station.
If your phone has fast charge capability, the Qi charger can kick out about 12W. It’s not like regular speed charging is an issue, you aren’t going anywhere after plugging in all your accessories.
There are three charging coils inside the charging stand. This allows for variable device sizes. You might have to stand your AirPods on an eraser or something, but it’s not a deal breaker.
It’s a surprise that no manufacturer has thought to make a docking station with a built-in Qi charger. That technology has been around for a while.
I suppose with our multitude of cables and expectation of just plugging stuff in, we didn’t demand it either. Since our phones are the center of our lives, it’s nice to see a docking station embrace that.
Clear the ports
It says right on the product page that the Dell Dual Charge Docking Station works best with Dell laptops via its ExpressCharge feature.
This is a small detail, but many office-issued laptops are Dell products. That’s not to say this won’t work fine with a non-Dell laptop.
I used it with an HP and, frankly, didn’t notice anything that didn’t meet expectations. So keep that in mind if you are on the fence.
Alternative options to consider
CalDigit TS4 Thunderbolt 4 DockPremium Pick
Plugable UD-3900HBest Runner Up
Kensington LD5400TBudget Pick
The Kensington LD5400T is a solid, old-school docking station. That one is also very cheap. But none of them have wireless Qi charging. That feature only exists on the Dell Dual Charge Dock.
While there are differences, wireless charging makes up for the lack of SD card slots.
More and more traditional laptop/PC accessories will be produced with our phones in mind. This dual charging dock is just the start.
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