Once we started using the Kingston 15-in-1 reader we noticed that is was easier to use with CF and SD cards than the previous version. Before all the media slots were directly on top of each other and if you had both an SD and CF card installed you couldn’t even see the SD card. With the new wider media reader you have better access to the cards for easy removal and installation. One other huge new feature on this reader is that it actually reads SD cards with no major problems. With the old reader I often found myself putting tape over the “lock” lever on the side of the card, since without it the reader would think the card was locked and wouldn’t write data to it.
When it comes to testing the new Kingston Flash memory reader we had to use the latest memory cards on the market and for that we picked the Kingston Ultimate Compact Flash and Secure Digital memory cards. The Kingston Ultimate SD card is rated at 133x, while the Kingston Ultimate CF card is rated at 100x. Both of these cards are perfect to test out the Kingston 15-in-1 reader with it’s high speed claims. The first card I tested was the 1GB Kingston Ultimate SD card that I use mostly in conjunction with my Treo 650. To test the new reader I benchmarked it against the old Kingston reader and found some amazing differences in transfer speeds. The SISoft Sandra 2005 chart below shows the old reader in red and the new reader in blue. The new reader proved to be FOUR TIMES faster when moving large files, such as the 64MB file size shown below.
For the 2MB file test the 1GB Ultimate SD card was able to read data at 18,671KB/sec (106x), which is much more than the old reader could do at 5,461kB/sec (29x). For detailed testing results on the old versus new readers on three different types of flash memory please download our Microsoft Excel spreadsheet to view the data. The old Kingston flash media reader was USB 1.1 compliant and featured a memory controller that was unable to read/write over 50MB/sec.
Nathan Kirsch’s Final Thoughts & Conclusions:
It is good to see that Kingston has come out with a media reader that is better than the old one in every way possible. It fixes the flaws found in the old reader, is faster, lighter, and reads more cards. To make things even better the MSRP on the reader is only $19, which leaves no excuse not to own one of these. After looking at our pricing site we found them on the market for under $18 + shipping. When it comes to flash media you can have the best camera in the world and the fastest memory cards to get every shot recorded instantly, so why not have a high speed media reader that quickly transfers all the data from the digital device to the PC for editing or storage? Here is a great stocking stuffer that will be used for sure by any student, enthusiast, or professional user.
Legit Bottom Line: The Kingston FCR-HS215/1 is the fastest flash media reader that we have seen to date and it comes at an MSRP of under $19. If you don’t have a high speed memory reader give your old one away like we did and order the Kingston 15-in-1 Flash memory reader, it won’t disappoint!