Apacer AP520 USB 2.0 4-Port Hub
A brainwavez.org Hardware Review

South Africa By: Mandy J Watson on 25 May 2011
Category: Tech > Hardware > Reviews
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This compact hub from Apacer is designed to be portable and to take up as little space as possible in your bag and on your desk, while still making four ports available to you so that you can plug in and access multiple USB devices at once.

I've tested two other hubs from Apacer that, while aesthetically more pleasant, have manufacturing, technical, or build/material faults (in my testing experience). Although this hub isn't made from particularly tactilely pleasant plastic (it feels plasticky) it has, so far, been quite robust. However, I've only been testing it for a few months, whereas the other two hubs I've had on long-term testing for 18 months and three years, respectively.

The choice of plastic also means that the hub is susceptible to minor scuff marks and scratches, especially on top along the ridge. Underneath there are three very tiny feet that keep it elevated about a millimetre off whatever surface it's standing on (should it be resting on a tabletop and not dangling from your computer) and this is enough to keep the base free of scuff marks.

Apacer AP520 USB 2.0 4-Port Hub

The Apacer AP520 hub is especially designed to be used with a notebook, which may only have one USB port or, if multiple ports, they may be too close together (the MacBook Pro being a prime example). For this reason the hub doesn't have a separate cable - instead a Type A USB plug with a short cord is built right into the device. Because the hub is round the ports are quite widely spaced around the unit, which means it can accommodate devices that are too wide or thick and would ordinarily block a second USB port positioned right next to it. The short cable curls around part of the curve of the hub and the plug clips into a special slot, keeping it safe and tidy when not in use.

Though I understand the reason for the short cable I'm not completely happy with it. If you're using your notebook on your lap or the USB ports on your desktop machine are quite high up the hub will be forced to hang from the port via the short cable. If you have heavy devices, such as a bulky portable USB flash-storage device or a portable USB modem, connected to the hub it's possible that over time gravity will cause strain on the cable. So far I haven't had any problems but this is an error that may take months or years to develop.

The hub has a green LED that indicates power, as well as a power port for an optional power adapter (not supplied). It doesn't become warm while operating and I haven't experienced any reading or writing errors while using it. It's available in two colours - Rose Pink and Stylish Grey - and a version of the pink hub also comes with self-adhesive rhinestones so it can be decorated.

The Apacer AP520 USB 2.0 4-Port Hub review unit was provided by Apacer.

brainwavez.org Opinion
Rating: 7/10

Key Facts: Apacer AP520 USB 2.0 4-Port Hub
Manufacturer: Apacer
Options: Rose Pink, Stylish Grey, Pink with self-adhesive rhinestones (so you can Bedazzle it)
Weight: 32g
Dimensions: 64.1mm (diameter), 15.3mm (height)
Interface: USB 1.1 and USB 2.0 compliant
Extended Ports: 4 downstream ports, USB Type A
Power Source:
Bus power (without power adapter)
Self power (with power adapter: 5V/2.5A)
Indicators: Green LED (power)
Operating System Support:
Windows: Windows 98 SE, Windows ME, Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7
Mac OS: Mac OS X 10.3 and above
In The Box: Hub, user manual
EAN: 4712389895165
Warranty: Two years

On The Internet
Apacer Asia Pacific: Official Site
Apacer EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa): Official Site | Facebook | Linked In | Twitter | YouTube
Apacer Europe: Official Site
Apacer USA: Official Site
Apacer AP520 USB 2.0 4-Port Hub: Apacer Asia Pacific | Apacer EMEA | Apacer EU | Apacer USA

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