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It seems like memory cards have become a ubiquitous part of everyday life – pretty much everything from mobile phones, to handheld consoles, to digital cameras use memory cards now. The annoying thing is that the chances are that all of your devices will use different memory card formats. Take me for instance; my digital SLR uses CompactFlash, my digital compact camera uses SD, my PSP uses MemoryStick Duo, my PDA uses SD and CompactFlash and my phone uses micro-SD (or TransFlash as it used to be known).
Of course the obvious answer is to use a multi-format memory card reader and luckily that’s exactly what I’ve got in front of me right now. This card reader from Crucial utilises the high-speed USB 2.0 interface, so you shouldn’t be waiting around too long for your data to transfer. It also has a removable USB cable which plugs into a standard mini-USB port on the back of the device – this is always good to see, since if you do lose the cable it will be easy to replace. The reader itself is also finished in aluminium, giving it a quality feel and making sure that it’s durable enough to withstand a fair few knocks.
Now you may have seen card readers advertised that allegedly support 20 or 25 different formats, but that is, quite frankly nonsense. This is just manufacturers playing a numbers game – most of the types are actually just different manufacturers’ marketing names for the same format. Crucial is far more honest about the specification of its card reader, some might say too honest. Crucial calls this an 8-in-1 card reader citing support for MemoryStick, MemoryStick Pro, SD, MMC, SmartMedia, MicroDrive, CompactFlash Type I & Type II.