iPad (USB-C) USB Hub setup and recommendations

I’ve got a new iPad Air (2020 model with USB-C) and would like to connect an audio interface (usb 3) and midi keyboard (via USB, it doesn’t have a midi interface). Both devices need power and can be powered through USB. The iPad needs power too. Or at least that would be ideal.

Wondering how to connect all this. My first thought was using a powered USB hub. But I’m not sure if that also powers the iPad. So can that be connected via an Apple USB-C Digital AV Multiport Adapter? Then I would need 2 power adapters (I think): one to power the iPad through the Multiport adapter and one for the powered USB hub? Or will the Multiport adapter also provide power to the USB output, thus removing the need for a powered USB hub? Ideally I’d like to keep it as simple as possible. Less is more.

Does anyone have a comparable setup? Or any recommendations how to connect all this in an efficient manner?

Some do, some don’t.

Note that USB hubs will usually not power the iPad through Apple USB-C Digital AV adapter (maybe vice versa, for low-powered devices. Probably not hub and audio interface). Also, the Apple adapter does have only one USB port, though you’ll need two. Adding another powered hub seems cumbersome.

I would look into something like this:

  • 1x USB-C connector (male) to plug into iPad Air (2020)
  • 1x USB-C port (female) to connect a power adapter (should power iPad & USB-A devices)
  • 2x USB-A ports to connect audio interface and midi keyboard
  • 1x HDMI output, just in case you want to work on a bigger screen

Note that the USB-A ports will only provide 5W output, not the non-standard 12W to charges devices like iPads. 5W should be enough though for standard-conforming devices.

No personal experiences with this particular product. Audio interfaces can be a bit finicky when you have to make sure there’s no noise or interference. Also, USB 3 hubs sometimes produce interference with wireless mice, Wi-Fi, etc.

In any case, I would avoid a chained adapter/hub setup as you described with the Apple adapter - and I’d definitely try to avoid working with more than one power adapter in the whole system.


Thank you for the advice.

I really like Satechi products and have a USB-C hub much like this one. However, I am still not finding a hub that ALSO has one or two USB-C connectors. Esp for the iPad Pro, this would be quite useful at times. The standard seems to be a single Power Delivery port that does not support data transfer.