AcomData Multiflash USB Flash Card Reader/Writer
The $100 Multiflash USB Digital Media Reader/Writer solves the problem of not having the right flash memory card reader, it's compatible with six of the most popular media formats. The Multiflash reads or writes data from CompactFlash Type I and II cards including IBM Microdrives, SmartMedia cards, MMC and Secure Digital cards and Sony Memory Sticks -- without the need of additional adapters.
No matter what digital camera or MP3 player you might own, you will be able to easily transfer its data to your computer. This is the perfect answer for today's digital photo labs that have to deal with all types of flash memory cards brought in by their customers. It's also perfect for people like me that have multiple cameras using different types of media.
The Multiflash Reader is available from MicroWarehouse (www.microwarehouse.com) and Fry's (www.frys.com) for about $100. It should also be available soon at Best Buys.
Drivers are included for Windows 98, 98SE, ME and 2000 as well as Mac OS 8.6+. The Multiflash reader needs no external AC adapter, it's powered directly from the USB port.
When the Multiflash reader is connected to the computer its four flash memory card slots appear as individual removeable drives. You can copy or read files to or from them using the utilities you're familiar with, no special programs are needed.
To keep you from getting confused over which drive letter applies to which card slot the drive icons contain the abbreviations for the various media types (CF for CompactFlash, SM for SmartMedia and etc).
|Data Transfer Tests (62.5MB of mixed JPG, TIFF, MPG)|
|SanDisk 256MB CF||1:53|
|Sony 64MB Memory Stick||2:42|
|SanDisk 128MB SmartMedia||1:49|
This chart shows the results of testing the Multiflash reader with four of the most common media types. It quickly becomes obvious just how slow the data transfer rate is for Sony's Memory Sticks, this is not the fault of the reader, it's due to the Memory Sticks' slower data controller.
In actual use the drivers installed with no problems on my Windows 98SE machine and within a minute or so I was looking at a lot of new drives in My Computer. I have used other multi-format card readers but this is the first one that lets you read and write between the card slots, all the others allowed access to only one card slot at a time.
I had no problems whatsoever with any of the devices that I tested, unfortunately I have no Secure Digital or MultiMediaCard cards here so I could not try them but I have no doubts that it would read and write them as well as it did all the other cards.
If you need to be able to handle multiple formats of digital media this is an ideal device for that task. It's much less expensive than buying individual card readers or PCMCIA adapters for CF, SM, MMC and Memory Sticks.