MST is a DisplayPort (DP) 1.2 and newer feature that allows multiple displays to be connected to a single video output. This can be done using a MST hub or by daisy-chaining multiple MST-enabled displays. This technology is driverless, and can be used for seamlessly setting up hotdesking or work from home setups. However, there are some common problems that can occur with these devices.
While our MST devices can support up to two 4K 60Hz external displays, users of older Intel CPU versions such as the 10th generation Icelake and 11th generation Tigerlake may find that their CPU only supports dual 4K 30Hz, or dual 1080p 60Hz external displays when connected to an MST-based docking station.
Based on internal testing, Plugable expects laptops that support DP 1.4 (Intel 12th gen CPUs or newer) to support up to two 4K 60Hz external displays. Older DP 1.2 hosts typically only support dual 1080p 60Hz external displays.
ARM-based systems also do not universally support MST. Whether or not a particular ARM system supports MST depends on the specific SoC (System on a Chip) that is used in the system. Some SoCs such as the Texas Instruments DRA829J do support MST, while others such as the MediaTek MT8127 do not.
If you are unsure whether or not your ARM-based system supports MST, you can check the specifications of your system processor to see if it mentions MST support.
Chart of external display performance for various hosts
Connection issues: (USB-C/Video Cables)
Another potential source of issues are the cables used to connect your dock to your laptop, and your monitors to the dock.
To connect your dock to your laptop, make sure that you are using a USB-C cable that supports DisplayPort Alt Mode. Plugable recommends using the cable that was provided with your device.
When choosing a video cable for MST, it is important to make sure that the cable supports the desired resolution and refresh rate. To be fully compatible with our MST products, you will want a cable that supports DP 1.4 with a maximum total bandwidth of 32.4Gbps. That gives it enough bandwidth to handle two 4K UHD streams at up to 60Hz. Plugable recommends using the cables that were included with your monitor.
If there are still connection or resolution issues despite using the correct cables, Plugable also recommends swapping out the cables to help determine if the original ones were faulty.
Driver/OS issues: (Staying up to date)
The last major source of compatibility issues with MST-based docks is the operating system your laptop is running. While modern laptops with MST compatible processors that are running operating systems such as Windows 11,10, 8, 7, and ChromeOS do support MST displays and devices, MST is currently not supported by macOS hosts.
You will also want to make sure that all system and graphics driver updates are applied to avoid any problems with outdated drivers or OS versions.
However, if you have confirmed that all your hardware is compatible and you are still not seeing the expected display results, please feel free to to reach out to our support team as email@example.com