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Archive for July, 2008

Surplus of NAND Flash Memory To Continue

DRAMeXchange published a market research paper stating that NAND flash memory will continue to flood the market at lower prices. NAND flash memory is primarily used for storing songs, photos and other data on gadget type devices like digital cameras, MP3 players and iPods. The biggest contributing factor on why the market will continue to see cheap NAND is lack of sales.

sandisk flash memory

Since production forecasts run months ahead, the market has sitting inventory. To move this inventory prices are continueing to drop. For example, DRAMeXchange reported a drop of 20% in June for NAND memory related devices.
The NAND flash market has been so bad that the creator of the chips, SanDisk, on Monday reported a surprise loss of US$68 million for the second quarter. The company blamed the supply glut for its problems, pointing out that it sold a record amount of flash, 120 percent more than the same time last year, but that prices are down 55 percent compared to then.
SanDisk also reported the flash memory pricing might get worse [better for us] in the third quarter. So, it might be a good idea to start picking out your Christmas items now and make sure it’s some type of flash gadget. On the flip side, with today’s surplus means these companies are cutting back production as well, so once this flood dries up, we could see a shortage for NAND and prices jumping up…and the cycle goes on. Source: Network World. Continue Reading

USB Duplicator is 20 Target Time Saver

We’ve heard of a USB port replicator which is a fancy word for dock station, but now we have USB Duplicator from Nexcopy. The USB duplicator is the largest PC based copier on the market which quickly and easily copies data to flash drives. The average user wouldn’t need this, but this product would be a great fit for many corporations today. Since USB flash memory is such a popular medium for data distribution the USB duplicator seems like a good investment that would save an IT guy a bunch of time.

usb duplicator

The Nexcopy USB Duplicator has several different functions like file copy, which copies files and folders from a PC onto the flash drive with the same file structure. Another feature is USB device copy. This is a low-level USB duplicator with a bit-for-bit copy function. The USB200PC also comes with a Copy Job function so you can set a string of activity…like Format, Copy, Verify and Volume Name. It appears the USB duplicator uses Windows .NET frameworks for it’s multi-threading technology. This means your 20 devices will copy a little slower than a 1-to-1 copy, but the end result yields 20 USB drives, not 1. Big time saver by anyone’s standards. The Nexcopy duplicator has a list price of $1,299 which makes it the most economical solution for the number of targets it provides; 20. Continue Reading

SD Memory Cards Should Use Specific Formatting Software

computer userDid you know that SD (Secure Digital) memory cards should use a specific type of formatting software? I didn’t. I’ve been using the typical Windows formatting utility for years now – never seen a problem. However, I found out today that Panasonic has such a software utility. A utility that complies with the SD Memory Card Specification. The SD formatting software is specifically design for this media type and should not be used with other media types such as Compact Flash, USB or Memory Stick. However, the SD formatting software is ideal for SD, SDHC and all the sub sizes including miniSD and microSD. It is difficult to determine exactly what the difference is from the Panasonic website but from our investigation it appears you get two benefits. 1) the card size is formatted correctly to maximize size. The Windows version will make your card slightly smaller and 2) with optimized format the flash memory will perform slightly better. Of the two benefits, it’s difficult to determine how much of a difference a user would really see. Marginal at best. However, if you are anything like me, grab the utility package and give her a try. Panasonic’s webpage for SD Memory Card Formatting Utility. Continue Reading

Flash Memory Lady Bug

Here is a twist on the traditional flash memory card reader.  The flash memoy Lady Bug is a creatively designed card reader with some additional features.

lady bug usb

The little Lady Bug is a microSD card reader, includes a min 5pin data cable and of all things, includes a micro UV money detector light.  Hmmm. Topping it all off, the Lady Bug includes 4GBs of memory so she can be used as a USB drive. Simply click the black “head” button on the front and the wings pop open giving you access to all her parts and features.  All this for just $10. Continue Reading

Solid State Drives Slurp Power Not Save It

As Gizmodo says, “swindled“  That’s what we are all feeling when Tom’s Hardware determined solid state drives don’t save power, they slurp it up like a 64oz soda from 7-11.

solid state drive power

The theory behind SSD (Solid State Drives) would be no moving parts, thus a big power savings.  This thought process seemed particularely promessing for portable laptops.  However, it seems the “moving parts” cousin – our traditional disk drives – do a better job at power management. Tom’s Hardware is drawing some conclusions from their experiment.  Since SSD has an “On or Off” mode this means when your laptop is on, that Solid State Drive is always drawing power; whereas, the old fashion disk drive only draws power when it’s searching for data and thus doesn’t always draw a certain level of power…in fact, these drives are optomized to only pull power at peak search times. Not sure how much water this theory holds, as the disk drives always need power just to know when a request is being made, but hey, Tom’s Hardware has more resources [for both testing and experience] so I’ll take their word at face value for the moment. Continue Reading
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