Why does it take so long to download my images?
You have probably found yourself waiting forever to download images, especially movies, from your digital camera to your computer. If you find yourself with enough time to have a cup of coffee or maybe even a 3 course dinner while you're waiting for your camera to download, there are a couple of simple things you can do.
The simplest way to speed up the process is to disconnect the camera from the computer completely. No kidding! The connection through the camera is probably the slowest way to download images to the computer. It also requires that the battery be fully charged and it's just not efficient. The most efficient way to move images from your camera to your computer is to use a good quality card reader. They can be purchased for as little as $15.00 or as much as $70.00. These little wonders will increase the speed of transfer by as much as 10 times! One customer I dealt with recently was trying to download 6 video files from her brand new camera to her MacBook. The entire process took 24 minutes and there was only 10 minutes worth of video. The customer thought that her iPhoto program was hanging and we all know that MAC's don't do that! When we took the memory card out of the camera and connected it via the card reader the entire import to iPhoto completed in about 2 minutes.
When looking for a card reader make certain that you are purchasing the most current technology. There have been recent changes in the electronic architecture of some memory cards that may cause certain card readers not to work with some of the newer cards. Check with your knowledgable retailer before making your purchase. (That would be us....)
Another thing to watch for is memory card speed. This is usually shown on the package as 60x or 133x and refers to the number of times faster than the base "standard" read and write speed of 150 kilobytes per second. So a 233x card will read and write at 35000 kilobytes per second or 35 megabytes per second! That will really juice up your downloads!
You can spend a little or a lot on a memory card but the more you spend, the faster and more reliable the card will be. Some very inexpensive memory cards can be particularly slow and are only good for a few thousand read or write cycles. Better quality cards are usually much faster and will remain reliable much longer because of the way the electronic circuits are constructed inside the little plastic case.
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