Entertainment and a 4-port hub rolled into one. (November 8th, 2007)
Product Manufacturer: saitek industries Ltd.
Price: $9.95 US, £9.99
- Lightweight. Built-in USB cord. Extension USB cord included. Available in many colors. Color-coordinated mouse available. Windows and Mac compatible. Good price.
- Built-in cord is very short. The manual link on the site is for a different product. You may find the lights annoying.
If small and cute is on your gift radar, you want to add the Saitek Mini UFO Hub to your holiday list for your traveling Geek this season. The bright colored tiny 4-port USB 2.0 hub is just the right size to tuck into any computer bag, no matter how little peripheral room you have.
an other worldly hubThe Mini UFO Hub definitely has that saucer-shaped UFO appearance, complete with lights. It is only 2-inches long and less than an inch tall. While you may find the red to green to yellow to red to blue pulsating light a bit distracting when connected directly to your portable, you certainly won't forget to unplug it when packing up. I often find I've forgotten to disconnect flash drives and small hubs when rushing to slide my machine into a bag, but the lights remind you to disconnect it and any other connected USB peripherals.
The built-in USB cord is about half an inch long, so you can't use the hub on a desktop without an extension USB cord. The attached cord folds right into a slot in the bottom of the hub. Thankfully, Saitek includes a 33-inch extension USB cord that also extends the hub's usability. The cord allows you to connect the UFO Hub to a desktop machine or to hide the pulsing display behind your notebook.
While the bus-powered hub may not look robust, it handles flash drives, card readers, and other bus-powered USB devices without a hitch. I had no trouble using the hub with one to four devices connected, on my G4 PowerBook and an Intel-iMac.
A color for all seasonsIf fashion sense plays into coordinating your peripherals, you will be pleased to see the UFO Hub comes in eleven different colors, although the order pop-up menu only lists seven of them. The great price means you can order one for every outfit.
My test model is lemon yellow, which makes it easy to find in any loaded bag of peripherals. I'm partial to yellow and orange accessories, so no groans please. A silver model complements the MacBook nicely. You can also purchase a color coordinated Notebook Optical Mouse to complete your peripheral outfit.
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