The Apricorn Aegis NetDock is a USB docking station for netbooks and notebooks that offers three things that mini-laptops are often short on: extra hard drive space, an optical disc drive, and extra USB ports. The company first introduced the NetDock in March, but it’s now shipping, and the folks at Apricorn were kind enough to send me a demo unit to review.
The NetDock comes in two configurations. For about $189, you get a model with a 500GB, 5400RPM hard drive, while $89 gets you a version with an empty 2.5″ hard drive bay so that you can add your own.
Both models have an 8X DVD burner and a 4 port USB 2.0 hub with 2 “always on” ports.
Because of the 3-in-1 nature of the NetDock, you can’t draw enough power to run the docking station from the USB ports on your computer, so you will need to plug the NetDock into a wall jack, which makes it a little less portable than many USB hard drives or disc drives. But at 6.25″ x 5.75″ x 2.13″ it’s really not much larger than many of those single purpose devices.
One thing I did notice is that the Apricorn Aegis NetDock is a little noisy at times. When I inserted a DVD to watch a video, the sounds coming from the disc drive were pretty noticeable for a few seconds before it quieted down.
You can check out some unboxing photos and more hands-on photos after the break.