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Review: USB Card Reader for microSD Cards

Several weeks ago I picked up a 1 penny (yes 0.01) card reader for microSD cards from USB Fever. Today, I set aside some time to see how well the little bugger performs…and to my surprise, very well.

Introduction:

The microSD USB Card Reader is very compact and comes with mini lanyard and plastic case. The device is unique in that all components for the card reader sit inside the USB Type-A connector. It makes for an extremely small and portable reader, and can be, at times, difficult to pull out from a stubborn USB port. However, given the idea of what this product is all about – compact, portable performer – it didn’t bother me too much.

microsd in usb port

I compared the performance of a direct connect of the microSD card through the USB card reader to the microSD adapter provided to me from SanDisk when I purchased the flash memory. When using the SanDisk adapter, I did need a USB card reader which could contribute to the slower SanDisk performance; however, the card reader handles transfer rates extremely well from previous benchmark tests so diminished performance is minimal.

Compare:

Below are the results from USB benchmark software for File-Benchmark. This is the typical transfer rate experience one will encounter when doing read/write copies.

You can see the write speed taps out near 4309KB/s for the USB card reader and read speeds higher at 9717 KB/s.

usb card reader performance

The results from the SanDisk adapter are lower with 3826KB/s on write speed and 3685KB/s on read speed.

card reader usb test

The next screen shot displays the results of Low-Level Benchmarks. The Low-Level test determines the theoretical maximum transfer rate for the device given the environment.

Here you see the write speed using the USB card reader is better, in addition, the read speed greatly out-performs the SanDisk adapter.

file benchmark usb card reader

Conclusion:

The size is small – which I like. It would be easy to tether the USB card reader to your PDA or cell phone without it being annoying. Further, given a card reader is mostly used to read data off the flash memory to the computer, I would spend the [very] little money on the USB Fever card reader than settle for the included adapter you’ll most likely get with microSD card purchases.

usb card reader microsd

USB Fever product page. All USB Benchmark testing was performed by USB Performance Software.

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