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Why use a card reader?


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  1. Speed. Card Readers are often A LOT faster than any camera, unless you have a fancy $6000+ Pro Grade Body and has an Ethernet Port built in.
  2. Possible Battery Failure during transfer. I know, this is rare, but it's plausible. Even though you may not be doing anything, if your camera is hooked up to the computer, it's using the battery. If that dies during transfer, you could have a scrambled card.
  3. Bent Pins in a CF slot. One of my famous quotes applies here, "...The First Law of Human Ingenuity: At first it doesn't fit...shove it in harder." Bent pins suck. I know, as time goes on and we move away from CF (Pin-Style Media) this type of failure will eventually go away. While we wait for another 10+ years for that to happen across the board, I will reiterate...BENT PINS SUCK. They cause all sorts of damage to CF cards. You know what's worse? Bent Pins in the CF Slot on the camera! I personally know of one photographer who blew up three cameras due to a bent pin in a slot during a Wedding. Card didn't work in Camera One. Took the CF card from Camera One and put it into Camera Two, which was the backup. Card was shorted from Camera One and blew up Camera Two. Photographer Grabbed 2nd shooter's backup camera and blew that one up. Again, bent pins suck. I hate wasting money, so which would you rather have, a $30 Card Reader Replacement or a $300 repair bill from your camera manufacturer?

Now, I understand that lots of folks in here are just "Hobbyists" and only do this for "Fun" and have "...NEVER had a problem..." so I shouldn't be so "Serious" about this topic. I get it. After all, it's just photographs...we aren't curing cancer, or ending world hunger,  right? I mean, it's not like photographs are important or anything like that in the grand scheme of things, right? RIGHT? ;)

Until they are.

Until your luck runs out.

Oh, give this article a read. Thom Hogan interviewed the ORIGINAL PROGRAMMER that came up with the idea for data recovery on CF Media. His software is the one that Sandisk uses and he has great insights on how to treat your cards. (Hint: NEVER DELETE IN-CAMERA.) Please read the whole thing. The Data Recovery Interview by Thom Hogan.

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Finally, if you own a Mac, the Mac OS is based on a old operating system from the 1970's, called Unix. (Pronounced You-Nicks). The Mac OS treats devices like EHD, CD-ROM/DVD-ROM, CF/SD Readers as physical hard-wired devices to the computer. It's like they are all hard drives. Transferring Photos on a Mac almost REQUIRES some sort of reader, unless you enjoy hating life and making things difficult for yourself. If that's the case, have at it. LOL!!

But seriously, if you have a Mac, please use a Card Reader.

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