Samsung emphasized its goal of a streamlined user experience with the unveiling of the Galaxy Note 9, highlighting the flagship's capabilities of seamlessly connecting with other devices. The Note 9's new and improved DeX mode makes it easier than ever to interface with a slew of devices like the Galaxy Tab S4 and a wide array of displays and monitors.
From the Galaxy S8 onwards, Samsung has obsessed over developing a way to turn their handsets into miniature desktops and came up with DeX as a way to bridge the gap. This method proved be cumbersome, however, as it relied on a dock that had to be purchased separately, which kept it from gaining widespread use.
Thankfully, Samsung has revamped and simplified the entire DeX experience with the arrival of the Note 9. Now, all you need to do to get into DeX mode is plug your device into a monitor using a USB-C to HDMI adapter (DisplayPort). From there, you simply launch an app to use your device as a trackpad and virtual keyboard, effectively creating a simplified desktop experience.
There are some minor caveats here, however. If you go with a USB Type-C to HDMI cable instead of the official DeX dock (or the Bixby cable that should be coming soon), you'll be limited to 720p resolution as opposed to the 1080p resolution offered by Samsung's own products. You'll only be able to run up to 5 apps this way, whereas you could run 20 with a first-party DeX adapter. Overall, these limitations are minor compared to the monetary savings you'd get from going this route.
For the reasons stated above, Samsung will naturally advertise its own USB-C to HDMI cable as the best way to connect to a monitor or display, but any adapter of the same type will work. Nonetheless, you can buy one of the official DeX connectors from Samsung below:
- Buy Samsung's official DeX cable ($49.99)
- Buy Samsung's official DeX Pad (with charging) ($68.88)
- Buy Samsung's official DeX Station (with charging and ethernet) ($149.99)
Now for the more cost-effective options. Below, we've rounded up some of the best USB-C to HDMI adapters you can purchase right now. All the cables listed are rated to support resolutions of up to 4K @ 60 Hz (well above DeX max numbers), and have at least 4-star reviews on Amazon.
- Buy Anker USB-C to HDMI Cable, 6 ft from Amazon (5 stars, $19.99)
- Buy MSLAN USB-C to HDMI Cable 6 ft from Amazon (4.9 stars, $16.99)
- Buy Cable Matters USB-C to HDMI Cable, 6 ft from Amazon (4.7 stars, $17.99)
- Buy CHOETECH USB-C to HDMI Cable, 3.9ft from Amazon (4.5 stars, $18.99)
- Buy CableCreation USB-C to HDMI, 6 ft Cable from Amazon (4.4 stars, $14.99)
- Buy Kimwood USB-C to HDMI Cable from Amazon (4.3 stars, $19.99)
- Buy uni USB-C to HDMI Cable, 6 ft from Amazon (4.3 stars, $14.44)
- Buy KINGONE USB-C to HDMI Cable, 6ft from Amazon (4.2 stars, $18.99)