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Old May 30th, 2008, 02:25 PM   #1
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Recommended CF Card Readers

After considerable research into Compact Flash card readers, we have concluded that the Lexar UDMA Firewire 800 Reader (around US $60) is still the very best overall choice. This reader is very small and portable and you can daisy chain up to 4 readers on a single Firewire-800 bus (and stack the readers on top of each other) and see all the files on all four cards. All four readers can be powered directly off the Firewire 800 bus (no external power required!)

We have clocked the Lexar reader at over 40 Mbytes/sec reads using the Transcend 32 GB CF card, which means you can easily edit directly from the card without the need to copy to your hard drive. The 40 Mbyte/sec performance would support 4 streams of 50 Mbps or 2 streams of 100 Mbps directly from the cards. So, if you need to turn around an edit very quickly, this would be the best solution.

Yes, you can use USB based readers (we plan to include one in the Flash XDR box), but don't expect much performance. You might be able to edit a single 50 Mbps stream directly from the reader, but that's about the limit.

If you don't have a MAC with built-in Firwire-800, you can get an Express Card 34 to Firewire 800 adapter. Belkin makes one for around US $70, but I am sure there are plenty of other good choices on the market.

Another possible option is the Express Card 34 Compact Flash readers, available from Delkin and Synchrotech (around US $60). We have received good reports on these products, but they both have very short guide rails to support the Compact Flash cards, so it's easy to get the card twisted. This, of course, results in bent pins and a non-functional card. The other big drawback of this approach is that you are limited to reading one CF card at a time, as opposed to the stackable Lexar reader, which supports access to four cards.
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Old May 30th, 2008, 06:51 PM   #2
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Thanks for the posting Mike... some of us took advantage of the rebate that was available a couple of months ago at Newegg... great price on these readers, they are nice as Mike has posted..

In my case I purchased the readers and I use an older Dell laptop that I normally utilize the card buss for firewire 400, USB 2.0 transfers.

So I was interested in the firewire 800 implementation on my older Dell laptop going thru the card buss.

I found the SIIG firewire 800 3-port cardbus card and purchased it for the card reader interface...

Initially it didn't work as the card readers weren't getting the proper power on the card buss... so I purchased the SIIG power adaptor and the card readers work fantastic, fast and no issues now on my older dell laptop...

and its hard to beat the 32gb card price...

just thought I'd post for those of us using older equipment... :-)
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Old May 30th, 2008, 09:56 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray Bell View Post
In my case I purchased the readers and I use an older Dell laptop that I normally utilize the card buss for firewire 400, USB 2.0 transfers.

So I was interested in the firewire 800 implementation on my older Dell laptop going thru the card buss.

I found the SIIG firewire 800 3-port cardbus card and purchased it for the card reader interface...

Initially it didn't work as the card readers weren't getting the proper power on the card buss... so I purchased the SIIG power adaptor and the card readers work fantastic, fast and no issues now on my older dell laptop...

and its hard to beat the 32gb card price...

just thought I'd post for those of us using older equipment... :-)
Hi Ray-
Thanks for the post, glad you could make it work in your Dell laptop. I'll report next week on my results using the Belkin Express Card to Firewire 800 adapter in my Dell Laptop (which is about one year old). I suspect it will work well.

We might have a line on some high speed (300x) 32 GB cards, which could be great for 160 Mbps I-Frame or uncompressed work. I should have more info in the next few weeks.
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Old June 16th, 2008, 08:27 PM   #4
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32 GB Transcend CF Cards now at US $133

Just found a great website for 32 GB Transcend CF cards, now at $133 each: http://www.theupgradeplace.com/produ...ckage=Flash#34

The 300X 16 GB Transcend cards at now $216 at newegg.com

Based on prices of NAND Flash memory, the prices of both cards will llikely fall another 10-20% by the end of this year.
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