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Card reader or connect to camera via USB?
I recently bought a Sony A350. The USB connector is in the same place as the CF card, so it's about the same effort to plug the cable or take the CF off and put it on the computer's reader. It seems to me that using the CF reader is much more convenient, since (1) I can keep the cable in the camera case and don't risk forgetting it, and (2) I don't need to keep the camera on draining the battery with the possibility of accidentally hitting the cable and dropping the camera..

Is there any reason I shouldn't just take the CF out everytime? Is there such thing as a risk of damaging the CF card connector by switching cards too much (since it uses pins instead of contacts)? Or is the cable included "just for people who don't have readers"?..

Comments (7)

Qvantamon wrote:.

Is there any reason I shouldn't just take the CF out everytime? Isthere such thing as a risk of damaging the CF card connector byswitching cards too much (since it uses pins instead of contacts)?.

I bought my Canon G2 in 2002 ... it has CF cards. And the two other cameras I've bought since then, CF cards too..

I used to worry, and vaguely, I still do..

But my experience, after 6 years, is that if you are at least vaguely careful, there's no issue. Never force the card, and if you avoid that entirely, you'll never have any problem... I think...

Comment #1

Qvantamon wrote:.

Is there any reason I shouldn't just take the CF out everytime? Isthere such thing as a risk of damaging the CF card connector byswitching cards too much (since it uses pins instead of contacts)? Oris the cable included "just for people who don't have readers"?.

If you don't force the card in when you insert it into the carmera, you probably won't have to worry about bent pins. I use a CF reader since it is simple and fast (and you don't have to install crappy drivers from the camera OEM). You will generally be able to download photos much faster with a card reader than with a USB cable directly to the camera...

Comment #2

I recommend getting the fastest card you can plus a fast card reader. The Sandisk Extreme III plus Sandisk Extreme Firewire card reader is what I use on my Mac, I presume they do a USB version for the PC as well. If you download from the camera directly you might get 5 - 7 mb / s, if you use the aforementioned card reader you'll get up to 20 mb/s with an Extreme III, and about 40mb/s with a Extreme IV..

Once you experience those sort of speeds going back to direct camera connection feels totally primitive!!!.

Qvantamon wrote:.

I recently bought a Sony A350. The USB connector is in the same placeas the CF card, so it's about the same effort to plug the cable ortake the CF off and put it on the computer's reader. It seems to methat using the CF reader is much more convenient, since (1) I cankeep the cable in the camera case and don't risk forgetting it, and(2) I don't need to keep the camera on draining the battery with thepossibility of accidentally hitting the cable and dropping the camera..

Is there any reason I shouldn't just take the CF out everytime? Isthere such thing as a risk of damaging the CF card connector byswitching cards too much (since it uses pins instead of contacts)? Oris the cable included "just for people who don't have readers"?..

Comment #3

Hi,.

No real risk that you should worry about, just take it easy and don't force the thing. There should be grooves the cards slides along to line it up correctly. I've a lot of CF cards going back to 64MB and no problems..

Regards, David..

Comment #4

There was a post last week from a fella who fried his camera connecting it via USBmto download photos. While downloading photos there was a very brief power outage lasting miliseconds followed by a surge and now he needs a new camera..

I use USB only in emergencies..

Chris Elliott.

*Nikon* D Eighty + Fifty - Other equipment in Profile.

Http://PlacidoD.Zenfolio.com/..

Comment #5

Hi,My first DSLR a 300D suffered from a bent pin and I have used the USB connector.

Ever since.It takes a little bit longer but my peace of mind is absolute.Trust me you dont want to bend one of the pins !! If I had never suffered the problem I am sure that I would be an advocate of cardreaders but even now whenever I need to change a card my heart is in my mouth.PJT..

Comment #6

Qvantamon wrote:.

I recently bought a Sony A350. The USB connector is in the same placeas the CF card, so it's about the same effort to plug the cable ortake the CF off and put it on the computer's reader. It seems to methat using the CF reader is much more convenient, since (1) I cankeep the cable in the camera case and don't risk forgetting it, and(2) I don't need to keep the camera on draining the battery with thepossibility of accidentally hitting the cable and dropping the camera..

Is there any reason I shouldn't just take the CF out everytime? Isthere such thing as a risk of damaging the CF card connector byswitching cards too much (since it uses pins instead of contacts)? Oris the cable included "just for people who don't have readers"?.

No doubt some are going to tell you not to risk damaging the connectors and d/l from the camera. I've been using readers for about 8 years now (almost exclusively with CF), and never damaged the pins. If you have a tendency to be clumsy, then maybe it's not for you. But the honest truth is it's not that easy to damage the pins if you're even slightly careful when inserting the card..

Downloading from the reader will be faster, and as you mentioned you don't have to worry about the camera batteries dying in the middle of a d/l. My main concern with tethering the camera to the computer is having someone or something get caught on the cord and yanking the camera to the floor. Yeah, I know, that goes back to being careful - but my dogs don't understand that .

Mark..

Comment #7

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This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.

 

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