SanDisk Cruzer (16 GB) USB 2.0 Flash Drive (SDCZ36-016G-A11)

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SANDISK CRUZER 16GB USB 2.0 FLASH DRIVE

Sep 13, 2009
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:This is a very easy way to back up valuable files.

Cons:U3 software is preloaded.

The Bottom Line: This is a safe and easy way to back up and transport your valuable files.


SANDISK  CRUZER 16GB USB 2.0  FLASH  DRIVE

            There are good and bad points to any product, and that includes the SanDisk Cruzer 16GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive.  I want to start off by openly admitting that I am not a techie or computer geek, and I am not a computer expert by any stretch of the imagination. I actually wish I was more computer literate than I am, and I am striving to do so.  That being said, I shall do my best to share my experiences with the reader, not as an expert, but from a layman's standpoint.  In this review, I shall try to address both the pros and the cons, and let the reader be the judge as to whether the good points outweigh the bad.

            One of the obvious pros is that the SanDisk 16GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive has such a large data storage capacity.  As many of you who are reading this may already know, GB stands for Gigabytes, which means 1 billion bytes of information, and 16GB stands for 16 billions bytes.  With such a large storage capacity, one can easily store even large data files, video clips, music, pictures, and the like, and take them along anywhere. 

           O.K. so we know that the storage capacity of the SanDisk Cruzer 16GB 2.0 Flash Drive is very impressive.  However, there are a few problems here worth mentioning that might be annoying to some, and less so for others.  A complaint that I have heard a number of times is that the write and read speed is slow.  Well the write speed is listed in the specs as being 18MB/s and the read speed is listed as being 25MB/s when plugged into a high speed port.  Personally, the write speed I noted was between 6MB/s to about 12MB/s, depending on what I was copying.  To some that may seem slow, but actually I was not put off by it.  After all, we are talking about a small data storage device, not a main frame computer.  I found the read and write speeds to be completely acceptable for my purposes.  However, one of my sons, whom I bought one of these for, found that in his opinion, the SanDisk Cruzer was frustratingly slow when it came to copying large files, especially video.  He did not have a complaint regarding playback speed for his music however.  I have no complaints, as it my opinion, the SanDisk Cruzer performed as I expected it to.

           The dimensions of the SanDisk Cruzer 16GB USB Flash Drive  are 0.8 inches wide, 2.3 inches long, and 0.4 inches deep, and the weight is just 0.35 ounces.  This can be a good thing and a bad thing.  I found that on my laptop, the USB ports were close, and that the SanDisk Cruzer made it very hard to have two devices plugged in to adjacent ports at the same time.  Well is this a problem with the design of the SanDisk or with the computer?  My answer is that it is a problem for both.  It would have been wiser in my opinion the make the SanDisk Cruzer 16GB Flash Drive a bit longer and thinner, and thus there would have been no issue. 

            The SanDisk Cruzer 16GB has a retractable USB connector, which both eliminates the need for a separate cap, as well as being able to protect the USB connector.  I think this is a very good thing, but others apparently have a different view.  I have experienced absolutely no problem with inserting the USB connector.  However, I have read that others are very dissatisfied with this design, and that when they attempt to push the USB connector into a computer port, that the connector retracts and it is a struggle to make the connection.  I have two of these 16GB SanDisk Cruzer's, as well as a 2GB and two 4GB versions, and have not encountered the slightest of problems with this feature.

            An issue that I was worried about was whether the SanDisk Cruzer 16GB Flash Drive, which is made of plastic, would be a safe way to store or back up my valuable files.  I got my answer sooner than I expected.  One of my sons forgot to take his SanDisk Cruzer 16GB Flash Drive out of his pocket when he did the laundry, and he not only subjected it to going through the washer, he also dried his pants in the clothes drier.  I discovered this fact, when I heard a loud exclamation (not a joyous one either) coming from the laundry room when my son discovered what he had done.  Shockingly, about 3 minutes later, I heard another loud exclamation coming from his room.  My son plugged in his SanDisk Cruzer and discovered that his precious data was still there.  I was more than surprised, I was shocked.  The plastic had not melted when it went through the clothes drier, and all of the data was intact.  Somehow, the data on the SanDisk survived the washer and drier.  That put my mind at ease as regards whether the SanDisk Cruzer was a safe storage device for my materials.

            The SanDisk Cruzer 16GB Flash Drive can be carried on a keychain, which is a good thing.  The bad thing is that the ring on the SanDisk is so flimsy that is can easily bend, and one can potentially lose it.  My solution was to attach a more solid ring on it.  However, why should I have had to do that?  Couldn't the engineers who designed this device have realized that we do not live in a perfect world, and that in the real world, things are a bit tougher.  This device should have a stronger and more solid ring on it.

            The SanDisk Cruzer 16GB Flash Drive has many extra features, such as password protected control and U3 Smart Technology.  SanDisk Developed the U3 technology to allow users to run Flash Drive on another computer and be able to launch a variety of personal applications, including games such as Mahjong and Sudoku.  Personally, I don't like this feature.  For one thing, it takes up a lot of space, and I do not need all of these applications, especially the games, and more importantly, I don't want to have extra things on my Flash Drive that I did not put there.  Another problem, is that to remove the U3 Smart Technology and related materials from the SanDisk Cruzer is more difficult than the SanDisk web page makes it out to be.  Why couldn't SanDisk simply provide instructions on how to down load the U3 technology from their website for those who want to do so, instead of having it built into the SanDisk Cruzer?  I for one would have been happier if I had the option to download it, instead of having to erase it.  A word of caution.  If you plan to remove the U3 software, do it before you place any data on your SanDisk Cruzer.  You may lose data if you try to remove the U3 software.  If you already have put data on your SanDisk Cruzer, be sure to back it up in a secure spot, such as on your computer, before you try to remove the U3 software.  It is always better to be safe than sorry.

            How compatible is the SanDisk Cruzer with different computer operating systems?  Well I have personally used it with Windows XP and Vista, and I have had no problems.  My son's girlfriend uses it on a Mac and she reports no complaints.  I have read that older versions of the SanDisk Cruzer 16GB Flash Drive and U3 software had some compatibility problems with certain operating systems, but I have a couple of new version of the Cruzer, and all seems fine to me.

            The SanDisk Cruzer 16GB Flash Drive has a glowing orange light when it is engaged.  This light blinks when the Flash Drive is being used. However, I have been told by others, that the flashing light is highly annoying to them, and the fact that it is always on annoys them even more.  Personally, I like that the SanDisk Cruzer has this light.  It lets me know that the Flash Drive has properly connected to the computer, and I am not turned off in the least by it.

            After using the SanDisk Cruzer 16GB Flash Drive, and having other family members using the same model without complaints, I must say that I am pleased with it.  Every product has good and bad points, but in my opinion, the strengths of the SanDisk 16GB USB Flash Drive greatly outweigh the weakness.

            Well I would like to thank you for taking the time to read my review, but now if you will excuse me, I must get back to practicing my guitar.       


Recommend this product? Yes

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