Although it’s certainly showing its age and the Nintendo Switch 2 could be right around the corner, I still adore my Switch and it’s my go-to console for traveling.
Back in 2017 before the launch of the Steam Deck, the Asus ROG Ally or the Lenovo Legion Go, the Nintendo Switch showed us once and for all that you could have a home console-like experience on the go. Unlike with the PlayStation Vita or the Nintendo 3DS, the Switch allowed you to play big, epic games from anywhere with minimal limitations.
While I’ve always loved the portability of the Switch and being able to play in handheld mode, as someone who grew up at a time when handheld consoles weren’t nearly as advanced as they are today, I still prefer playing on a bigger screen with one of the best Nintendo Switch controllers. Finding a place for your Switch and its dock in your entertainment center isn’t hard — though it is with the original PS5 — but the same can’t be said for when you want to play Nintendo’s hybrid console on a TV while traveling.
To do that, you need to find a place in your bag for the Switch's dock along with the bulky AC adapter the Switch needs to output video to a TV. Fortunately, though, I recently came across the perfect mini Switch dock that’s so small, I could literally bring it with me in my pocket.
If you like playing your Switch on the big screen when visiting family or even when staying at a hotel, this mini dock could be the perfect Switch accessory for you. While I do bring it with me when traveling, I also use it to have an even cleaner desk setup at home.
Now don’t get me wrong, the dock the original Nintendo Switch shipped with and the one that came with the Switch OLED are well designed and do serve the purpose of protecting the console while it’s docked. However, if you’ve taken one apart like I have, you quickly realize that the Switch dock has a lot of wasted space. In the picture above, the Switch dock in the middle is actually an original dock that I took apart and reshelled to make it more compact.
If you don’t want to invest in another dock for your Switch, you could do something similar with your existing dock with a replacement shell ($12, Amazon). Trust me, this project is a thousand times easier than trying to reshell Joy-Cons which I have done and wouldn’t recommend just because of how tedious the process is.
In fact, all three of my original Switch docks have been reshelled using this same kit and I now have them spread throughout my house for when I want to play on a different TV. On the far right side of the above picture, though, you can see the Genki Covert Dock Mini ($50, Amazon).
While my reshelled Switch docks are more than compact enough to travel with, I actually picked up the Genki Covert Dock Mini back when I added a second screen to my Peloton Bike just for playing video games during my rides. For that project, I needed a way to dock my Switch so that it would take up as little space as possible without the risk of it falling down. The Genki Covert Dock Mini worked perfectly for this but I recently picked up a second one just for traveling over Black Friday.
Dreaming of a dockless setup
If you’re in the market for a new monitor for your own desk setup, I can’t recommend picking up one of the best monitors with a USB-C connection enough. This way, you can use a single USB-C cable to charge your laptop and to connect it to your monitor. Earlier this year, I picked up the Samsung M7 Smart Monitor for this very reason.
Although I can’t connect my Switch directly to my monitor like you can with the Steam Deck or with a Windows handheld, the Genki Covert Dock Mini is the closest I can get for now.
The tiny dock is plugged into the power strip underneath my standing desk with an HDMI cable that runs up from it plugged into my monitor. From there, the braided USB-C cable that comes with the Genki Covert Dock Mini runs up from the dock to the base of my monitor stand. It’s a clean-looking setup, and I don’t have to worry about my Switch getting knocked over on my desk since it lies flat.
As of now, we really know very little about the capabilities of the Nintendo Switch 2. It’s highly likely though that it will also be a hybrid console that builds on the success of its predecessor. I’m almost certain that the Switch 2 will launch alongside a new dock but if you’re reading this, Nintendo, I would absolutely love for your next console to be dockless.
I wouldn’t mind another dock, especially if it added more USB ports or included image upscaling like the Marseille mClassic does. Still though, I would really like it if the Switch 2 could be dockless when connected to a USB-C monitor.
The perfect travel accessory for your Switch
My dream of a dockless Switch may never come to be but in the meantime, the Genki Covert Dock Mini is the perfect little Switch accessory for traveling as well as for downsizing your setup. If you’re going somewhere you know will have a TV with easy-to-reach HDMI ports, then you can toss the Covert Dock Mini in your bag alongside a USB-C cable and an HDMI cable and know that you’ll easily be able to play in TV mode wherever you go.
For those times when you won’t have a free TV close by, the Genki Covert Dock Mini also pairs well with a portable monitor. Putting together the setup pictured above took me less than 5 minutes and with a portable power station, you can play your Switch on a big screen from anywhere.
I know I’m a bit late to the party highlighting a gadget that came out last year but I’m just so impressed with the Genki Covert Dock Mini that I just had to share my thoughts on it. Like many other early Switch owners, I was mortified that I might fry my console with a third-party dock. Fortunately though, Genki’s engineers worked alongside Nintendo to create a portable dock with the right voltage to avoid any of the issues we saw with the first batch of third-party switch docks.
At just 1.35 x 1.66 x 1.3 inches, the Genki Covert Dock Mini is absolutely tiny and small enough to be one of the best stocking stuffers for that Nintendo Switch gamer on your holiday shopping list.
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Anthony Spadafora is the security and networking editor at Tom’s Guide where he covers everything from data breaches and ransomware gangs to password managers and the best way to cover your whole home or business with Wi-Fi. Before joining the team, he wrote for ITProPortal while living in Korea and later for TechRadar Pro after moving back to the US. Based in Houston, Texas, when he’s not writing Anthony can be found tinkering with PCs and game consoles, managing cables and upgrading his smart home.
Well I'd like to read about this thingamajig. But this space is just an ad infested hellhole.Reply
I've been to more sketchy places that have less ads than this.