Port Replicator Series 3 vs Series 3 Docking station. What's the difference?
I've just received a port replicator for my T410, and I find that I can't lock the Thinkpad to the unit. Is this the difference between a replicator and a dock.... ?
However, looking at the description of the port replicator, it says that it has "a cable lock slot to secure both your port replicator and your notebook".
I see that the Kensington Lock on the Port Replicator does lock the laptop to the unit. Thus the only differences I can see is that a D/Station has some extra ports (Parallel printer, couple more displays, headphone & microphone). Is that all?
Thinpad Port replicator series 3 (433610W) just replicates the port choices on the laptop, while the docks offer more port choices that are not available on the laptop itself.
The port replicator have the following port choices:
Left corner alignment for easy system attachment
Convenient eject button for one-step system removal
4 USB 2.0 ports
VGA analog monitor port
RJ-45 Ethernet port
Cable lock slot physically secures the ThinkPad notebook and ThinkPad Port Replicator Series 3.
Have more port options than the port replicator, namely it have 2 more usb ports, 3 video port choicies (displayport, vga, dvi). If you are using a Thinpad T4x0 or T5x0 or T4x0s with Optimus graphics technology, you can use 2 of the 3 video ports on the dock and at the same time the internal thinkpad LCD, for 3 LCD simultaneous support (note if you have the intel only or the nvidia only model, then you can only use 1 internal LCD + 1 of the port option or NO internal LCD + 2 video ports = 2 display support).
There are other versions of dock with more advanced features, such as the Thinkpad Mini Dock 3 Plus Series 3 (with 90 watt adapter), a version with 135 watt adapter (for W510 + other models listed in the compatible list), and there is a new 170 watt adapter version (for W510/W520 + other models listed in the compatible list).
This dock adds extra video display support (VGA + 2 displayport/2 DVI) and eSATA support that the Dock Series 3 does not have. This gives 4 display support with the optimus equipped version of the following Thinkpads:
For the version shipped with 135 watt adapter, it is compatible with all the laptop above + W510, while the version equipped with the 170 watt adapter is compatible with all the above laptops listed + W510 & W520.
The 170 Watts adapter and 135 Watts adapter are different, therefore you can't use the 170 watts adapter in the dock that is designed or the 135 Watts adapter.