Sonnet's Solo5G Ethernet adapter brings better-than-1Gbps connections to Apple's portables

Sonnet Solo5g Ethernet Adapter
Sonnet Solo5g Ethernet Adapter (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • The Solo5G is a USB-C to Ethernet adapter.
  • But it's capable of speeds up to 400% that of gigabit Ethernet.
  • You'll need a compatible switch, though.

Sonnet has announced the Solo5G Ethernet adapter and it's designed to add Ethernet capabilities to notebooks that only have USB-C ports. So, all of Apple's portables, then.

What makes this Ethernet adapter different to most, as spotted by Apple Insider, is its use of NBASE-T, a standard that sits somewhere between gigabit Ethernet and 10-gigabit Ethernet. In reality it can offer speeds of between 250% and 400% of a standard gigabit connection, but you'll need to have a multigigabit or 10-gigabit switch for that to work.

Featuring NBASE-T technology (also known as multi-Gigabit Ethernet) the Solo5G adapter supports 5 Gb/s and 2.5 Gb/s link speeds (5GBASE-T and 2.5 GBASE-T, respectively) over common Cat 5e cabling when used with a compatible multi-Gigabit Ethernet switch or 10 Gigabit Ethernet switch with NBASE-T support. Models from Buffalo, Cisco, Netgear, QNAP, TRENDnet and others are available now.

In the box you'll find the adapter as well as a 0.5m USB-C to USB-C cable. There's a USB-C to USB-A cable for those using computers without the latest connections, too.

None of this fancy tech comes cheap, though. You can order Sonnet's Solo5G directly from the company's website now for a cool $79.99. If you want the fastest of the fast though, this is the adapter to get.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.