Belkin (F5U249) Card Reader  (PP141AA#ABA) Reviews
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Belkin (F5U249) Card Reader (PP141AA#ABA)

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Think of it as Your Personal Translator that Speaks Eight Different Languages

Aug 3, 2005
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:A modest price for a capable and flexible media reader.

Cons:None worth mentioning.

The Bottom Line: Of the many media readers I've tried, the Belkin was best in its class in terms of price and the number of formats it supports.


It seems that most people have computers and are connected to the Internet these days. (At least the readers of this review are, so that generalization will work just fine for my purposes). People also seem to be buying digital cameras in droves as prices come down and the allure of sharing photos with family and friends via the Internet becomes more attractive and less technically challenging. Further easing the difficulty are devices like Belkin's 8-in-1 USB 2.0 Flash Card Reader, which I purchased for $29.99 at CompUSA.

Often times the interfaces between digital cameras and computer can be somewhat clunky. Software designed for this purpose can sometimes be counter-intuitive and the transfer speed of files from the camera to the computer painfully slow - especially so with cameras that have a larger resolution, and therefore file size for each picture taken.

Belkin&'s media reader poses a nice little solution to these difficulties in terms of size, cost, speed and compatibility. It uses the widely-recognized USB 2.0 interface which supports file transfer speeds of up to 480Mbps - which is 40 times faster than USB 1.1 media readers. In real-life terms, I can download over 150 photos from my 6.4 Megapixil Canon Digital Rebel in a little over five minutes.

The reader supports the following media:

-CompactFlash I
-CompactFlash II
-SmartMedia
-Secure Digital (SD)
-MultiMedia
-IBM Microdrive
-Memory Stick (as well as MagicGate)

Although it comes with software, I've found that it is plug-and-play compatible. On a Windows-based computer (running XP for example) all that is required is to plug it into an open USB port. Then, simply drag-and-drop the desired files from one of the card reader's four separate drives (which appear under "My Computer") into a folder of your choice. On a MAC, the drive mounts as a removable volume and can be ejected when finished.

It is not, however, limited only to usage with digital cameras. It can be used as an interface to transfer and copy files to flash cards for any device, like palm computers, cell phones, and MP3 players, making it an even more attractive, and capable tool.

The Belkin reader is surprising in its simplicity. A single USB cable connects it to your hub or computer, and a solitary green light indicates file transfers in progress. Yet, the reader is fully functional and small and unobtrusive with its matte gray finish.

It is also backed by a lifetime warranty. It has been completely reliable in the two years I've been using it. I would highly recommend this reader for anyone who takes a lot of pictures or just wants an easier-to-use interface when transferring files to their computer.


Recommend this product? Yes


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