Which has fastest data transfer rate? USB 2.0 CF card reader/writer OR CF PCMCIA adapter?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Renee, May 19, 2004.

  1. Renee

    Renee Guest

    I've been trying to research this question but haven't come up with an
    answer . . .

    Which will transfer photos faster from a CompactFlash card to my laptop?

    1) Using an external USB 2.0 Compact Flash card reader/writer, or

    2) Using CompactFlash PCMCIA card adapter

    The PQI Model 893C CompactFlash card reader my husband brought home is a
    small gadget that plugs directly into my laptops USB 2.0 port and sticks out
    from the laptop about 2 1/2 inches. I'd rather have one that slides all the
    way into the PCMCIA card slot. But I can live with it if it's faster than an
    adapter. The package says the USB 2.0 transfers at speeds up to 480Mbit/s
    (60MB/s). I can't seem to find information on the web about the CF PCMCIA
    adapter transfer speed.

    I haven't received my new camera yet; should get it Friday. It's a Canon
    PowerShot S1 IS and since it takes movies up to 1 GB in length, I'll
    probably be getting a MicroDrive some time in the future. Don't know if
    that's a factor in determining the type of reader to use. For now I'll be
    using my old 256 MB CFs, one is a Type I and the other Type II.

    Thank you in advance for your feedback everyone. Have a great day!

    Renee
     
    Renee, May 19, 2004
    #1
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  2. Renee

    Bill Hilton Guest

    >From: "Renee"

    >I've been trying to research this question but haven't come up with an
    >answer . . .
    >
    >Which will transfer photos faster from a CompactFlash card to my laptop?
    >
    >1) Using an external USB 2.0 Compact Flash card reader/writer, or
    >
    >2) Using CompactFlash PCMCIA card adapter


    PCMCIA is slightly faster than USB 1 but several times slower than the max
    rated speed of USB 2.0.

    If you want the fastest speed look at Firewire too. Even though the max data
    transfer rate is 400 Mbits/sec compared to USB 2.0 at 480 MBits/sec, with flash
    cards Firewire is actually faster.

    >The package says the USB 2.0 transfers at speeds up to 480Mbit/s
    >(60MB/s).


    This is for short bursts, not for sustained data transfers, unfortunately, and
    you'll never get 60 MB/s because most serial transfers require 11 bits to
    transfer 8 bits of data, adding a start bit at the beginning of the frame, a
    parity bit at the end, and a stop bit. USB also has a fair amount of protocol
    overhead so it's actually slower than Firewire with most fast devices.

    >I haven't received my new camera yet; should get it Friday. It's a Canon
    >PowerShot S1 IS and since it takes movies up to 1 GB in length, I'll
    >probably be getting a MicroDrive some time in the future. Don't know if
    >that's a factor in determining the type of reader to use. For now I'll be
    >using my old 256 MB CFs, one is a Type I and the other Type II.


    The actual transfer rate from card to computer depends on the speed of the card
    and on the type of reader. I ran some tests on a 1 GB Lexar 40x card recently
    with different readers and times varied from 18 min 33 sec with a USB 1.1
    reader to 3:27 with a USB 2 reader. If you need even faster times try a
    Firewire reader but 3:27 is pretty good for 919 MBytes (around 30x).

    This site has some good info on the speed of different CF devices with
    different cameras.

    http://www.robgalbraith.com/bins/multi_page.asp?cid=6007 (click on the drop
    down menu for "Compact Flash Performance Database").

    Bill
     
    Bill Hilton, May 19, 2004
    #2
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  3. Renee

    Ian Stirling Guest

    Bill Hilton <> wrote:
    >>From: "Renee"

    >
    >>I've been trying to research this question but haven't come up with an
    >>answer . . .
    >>
    >>Which will transfer photos faster from a CompactFlash card to my laptop?
    >>
    >>1) Using an external USB 2.0 Compact Flash card reader/writer, or
    >>
    >>2) Using CompactFlash PCMCIA card adapter

    >
    > PCMCIA is slightly faster than USB 1 but several times slower than the max
    > rated speed of USB 2.0.


    PCMCIA has both 16, and 32 bit versions.
    A cardbus (32 bit) adaptor has a bandwidth similar to PCI, 32 bits at
    33Mhz, or 133Mb/sec.
    Comfortably exceeding any compactflash card.
     
    Ian Stirling, May 20, 2004
    #3
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