Top & Best Card Reader: Which is the best in 2021?
We live in an era in which increasing volumes of information are stored on virtual media, while devices get smaller and thinner. So it is necessary to have a card reader!
A good reader allows you to access data from memory cards even on electronics that do not have inputs for them. In addition, they support different formats and can connect with different operating systems.
In this article, we’ll discuss everything you need to know to get your card reader right. We will talk about technical specifications and other features that are essential so that data transfer is never a problem again!
First, the most important
- Nowadays, many notebooks and electronic devices do not have memory card slots. In order to transfer data, the card reader is a good option.
- Readers can be either compatible with only a few of the most commonly used types of memory cards, or universal. If you use formats other than traditional SD, choosing the second option should be the solution.
- The most modern models are already compatible with USB 3.0, which greatly increases the data transfer speed.
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Ranking: The 4 best card reader models
To help you choose, we have selected card reader models that have a lot of quality. Below, we tell you a little more about each one. This way, you will know what is so special about them!
Now that you know some of the major card reader models, it’s time to find out more about the devices themselves.
Why should you have one? What are the advantages and disadvantages? How to choose yours? Let’s talk about all these aspects!
What is a card reader and what is it for?
Have you ever had the unpleasant experience of needing to insert a memory card into a notebook or tablet and realize that there is no entry?
Or, worse, have a camera with a memory card that doesn’t look like any you’ve seen, and have no idea how to insert it into any other electronic device?
It is to solve these situations that the card reader exists! It is a device with several inputs, normally compatible with dozens of memory card formats, and capable of connecting to any other device via USB or micro USB cable .
Usually small, making it easy to transport anywhere, the card reader helps you transfer files between cameras , cell phones, notebooks , tablets , MP3 players and the like.
With it, you will know that whenever you need to transfer data from memory cards, you can do it quickly and safely!
The memory card is a relatively new invention. Its development took place in the 1990s, when floppy disks became obsolete and needed to be replaced.
SanDisk was responsible for launching, in 1994, the first memory card in history. It was a Compact Flash (CF) type and had a very limited transfer speed and capacity compared to what we have today.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of a card reader?
The reader allows data contained on the memory card to be accessed even on devices that do not have input for these media. This is important in an era with smaller and thinner devices.
Because they are very versatile and support several types of cards, they also help to access data from formats that have already been discontinued and are little used today. Without a card reader, it may be impossible to access some media.
As a negative point, we can highlight that it is already common for data to be stored in the cloud, as well as transferred via wifi or bluetooth. This makes the use of the card reader quite specific.
You can use the reader to transfer data from an old photo camera to a notebook without a card slot, for example. As the model does not have current technologies, this is the only possible way of transfer.
But if the two devices are new, they will probably have more modern and faster ways of transferring, which makes the card reader a bit obsolete.
See the table below for the main advantages and disadvantages of the card reader:
What formats does the card reader support?
When we read the technical specifications of a card reader, we are faced with information supporting various types of media. “8 in 1”, “15 in 1” and even “40 in 1” are some of the numbers we found.
But what does it mean? Basically, there are several different types of memory card.
We have already got used to the acronyms SD card, Micro SD and Mini SD. Because they are almost always present on our cell phones, they are the most famous. We also know the Memory Stick, used in Sony devices.
To better understand the differences between SD, CF, Mini SD and other cards, in addition to their technical specifications, we recommend the following video from Canal Claquete:
You must be wondering how to know if a reader supports the types of cards you need. There is no magic formula. You must read the technical specifications of the chosen models!
However, we can make an estimate. We read the specifications of several cards that say “8 in 1”, “15 in 1” or universal and set up a table showing what they normally support:
But don’t forget that this table contains only what each category usually supports. For each reader model, there may be a slight variation. Check out the technical specifications!
The price of a card reader can vary widely according to the number of formats supported, the multifunctionality and the technology used for transfer. USB 3.0 models, for example, tend to have a higher value.
There are some very cheap models, even below R $ 10, but they are very simple. Most good readers are between R $ 30 and R $ 60, while the most complete, universal or professional, go over R $ 100.
Where to buy?
Trades specializing in computers and photography tend to have the widest variety of card reader models. As they are not widely used items by the general public, they should be found only in large or niche stores.
Fortunately, you can buy your card reader over the internet. And the Amazon is the best option, with several high quality models. We also recommend Amazon.
Purchasing criteria: What to consider when buying your card reader
Let’s talk now about technical specifications. We have selected some important criteria that you need to pay attention to at the time of your purchase:
- Transfer speed
Below, we explain a little about each of these criteria!
The more advanced a card reader technology is, the faster its transfer speed will be. A model compatible with USB 3.0, for example, will be faster than one that supports only USB 2.0.
But be sure to check the speed numbers on the packaging. Many of the card readers work at 480 mb / s, which is already satisfactory. Avoid models that are below that!
Which electronic operating system will you be transferring to? Windows, Mac, Linux, any other? See if there is compatibility of the chosen reader for the given system!
Also pay attention to the version. It is difficult to find readers compatible with older systems, such as Windows 98. And be sure to see if the model chosen is up to date and combines, for example, with Windows 10.
Will you use the card reader only in your home or provide services that may need it? Do you also want to use it in a work environment or in the homes of friends?
Most card readers are small in size and easy to carry even in your pocket. But some, especially universal and multifunctional ones, may be larger. Pay attention to the ease of transport of the chosen model.
Some card readers also have other functions, such as a USB hub or hard disk drive. For most people, this does not matter, but especially for those working in the computer sector, this multifunctionality can be useful.
So, if the price is worth it, in some situations buying a multifunctional device can be interesting. Evaluate the possibility!