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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
Sony PMW-300, PXW-X200, PXW-X180 (back to EX3 & EX1) recording to SxS flash memory.


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Old October 23rd, 2012, 04:19 PM   #1
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Expresscard to usb 3 reader

Any such thing?

Sorry if this is the wrong forum (maybe a Card Corral forum?) but this does involve an EX1 :-)

The plan is to shoot UHS-1/Expresscards and achieve decent off-load speed via usb 3.0. Decent meaning much faster than off-loading usb 2 straight from the camera.

Anyone use this little device?

EC03 (ExpressCard 2.0 to USB 3.0)

Am I nuts thinking it could be that easy and cheap?

Last edited by Bill Heslip; October 23rd, 2012 at 04:20 PM. Reason: typo
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 04:24 PM   #2
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

From the description:

"Notice:
This adapter only works with USB-based ExpressCard devices. PCI Express-based ExpressCard devices will not be detected. Please check with your device’s manufacturer if you are not certain."

Which means it will not download at the rate of the native express card.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 06:32 PM   #3
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

Currently, the only future tech that can read SxS at native speeds is Thunderbolt. This is already starting to appear in some PC motherboards and laptops.

If you're shooting SDXC or SDHC, a dedicated USB 3.0 reader is better for that purpose.

The reason why these are so cheap is because these adapters in some cases just take the USB based leads in the Expresscard spec and just physically translate it to a USB cable. There is no active chip on the board.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 11:31 PM   #4
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

Sony will be introducing a USB3 sxs reader very soon:

Sony | Micro Site XDCAM

However at that price I would go for a thunderbolt reader from Sonnet - much cheaper and much faster!
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 11:55 PM   #5
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

I suspected the devil was in the details with that device. Thanks for the education.

If you can humor me a while longer, would something like the Kingston FCR-HS3 15-in-1 USB 3.0 Media Reader get me there? It accepts SDHC/SDXC cards (that's the plan) but will it at least see my PCI ExpressCards?

I suppose genuine SxS cards are still an option if that would significantly speed up my workflow (PC based) compared to the above. Then there's the reader...

Last edited by Bill Heslip; October 24th, 2012 at 12:00 AM. Reason: clarification
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Old October 24th, 2012, 03:17 AM   #6
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

Genuine SxS is leaps and bounds faster than SDHC. The only other card format that comes remotely close is XQD. (for which the EX1 and EX1R support via the Expresscard adapter with firmware 1.30)

For SDHC, try to find a dedicated (and not 15-in-1) card reader for USB 3.0. The fastest speeds will come most likely from the UHS cards rated at 90MB/s read.
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Old October 24th, 2012, 05:10 PM   #7
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

Isn't it possible to use the camera itself as the express card reader and run a usb cable from it to the pc? I've been using the nanoflash so long that I forgot the current pc I'm using no longer came equipped with an express slot.
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Old October 25th, 2012, 12:55 AM   #8
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

It is, but that is limited to USB 2.0 speeds in the case of all the current cameras. Bill is asking for full bandwidth transfer of SxS footage via USB 3.0 or Thunderbolt. (Thunderbolt seems to be the best bet at the moment)
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Old October 25th, 2012, 12:17 PM   #9
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

Thanks for everyone's informative posts.

Concerning Thunderbolt, is it not a Mac-only protocol at the moment?

Jack, if I'm determined to go USB 3.0 (my computer already has the ports), would this device offer any substantial speed increases over simply using the camera USB interface?

Sonnet DiO Pro CompactFlash and SDXC USB 3.0 Media Reader

Unfortunately, I sent in my EX1 for a firmware update (1.26) right before 1.3 was released, so no QXD option for me. The above device is UHS-1 compliant if that helps.
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Old October 25th, 2012, 03:42 PM   #10
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

MxM will also have a USB3 reader out soon as well

Express34/54 USB 2.0 READER - Silver - (MXM046) - MXM Express
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Old October 25th, 2012, 05:17 PM   #11
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

The TB solution from Sonnet works very well on macs and I see it is compatible with PC's as well, at least in the near future.

TB is a great protocol for RAIDs as well.
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Old October 25th, 2012, 07:57 PM   #12
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

[QUOTE=David Dwyer;1760622]MxM will also have a USB3 reader out soon as well

I had my eye on that one but their ship date has drifted so far that I've run out of time.
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Old October 26th, 2012, 02:39 AM   #13
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

The only issue with the Sonnet thunderbolt adapter is that if your mac only has a single TB port you have to figure out an alternative way to connect any external drives or a monitor while using the Express Card reader. Some drives have a TB loop through, but not all and even if you have a single loop through you can't have the drive, Sonnet adapter and an external monitor at the same time :-(

The new Macbook pros just launched have 2 thunderbolt ports and USB3 and this would be your best all be it rather expensive option.

I use a firewire 800 drives which is a significant improvement over USB, but you don't get the full speed benefits that of the high speed TB transfer due to the FW800 bottleneck.
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Old October 26th, 2012, 04:02 AM   #14
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Heslip View Post
Unfortunately, I sent in my EX1 for a firmware update (1.26) right before 1.3 was released, so no QXD option for me. The above device is UHS-1 compliant if that helps.
No, you can still get XQD by doing the 1.30 update yourself after 1.26. Only if you have a firmware lower than 1.15 is where you can't upgrade firmware yourself. My other thread where I performed the update on a SDHC card has links. (Titled "Before I upgrade my EX1R to 1.30")

Certainly go for UHS compliant USB 3.0 SDXC readers as it will speed up your workflow.
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Old October 27th, 2012, 10:57 PM   #15
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Re: Expresscard to usb 3 reader

In the meantime, using a pc notebook with expresscard slot and USB3 port, going to external bus powered USB3 hard drives, I've been getting consistent transfer speeds of about 110+ MB/sec from SxS-G1A cards. That's a bit under 5 minutes for a full 32GB card. It's a bit better than transfer speeds from the SxS-Pro cards, though they're still pretty good. I suspect that I might get better speeds going to a raid drive, but the small drives are really convenient.
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