PDA, Notebook and Phone Reviews and buyers guide

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Flash Memory Card Reviews:

SD Cards
ATP Mini SD and SD cards High Speed 60x
Kingston Elite Pro 50x
Kingston Ultimate SD Cards 120x
PQI SD & mini SD High Speed
Ridata PRO 66x
SanDisk (Standard Speed)
SanDisk Extreme III High Speed

CF Cards
Butterfly Media
Delkin eFilm
Kingston Elite Pro High Speed
Ridata PRO 80x

Memory Stick / Memory Stick Pro

MMC Cards

RS-MMC Cards

PC Card Hard Drives
Toshiba 2 & 5 gig

Multifunction Drives
Ridata QuattroDrive

USB Flash Drives
Kingston DataTraveler Elite
Crucial Gizmo

Card Readers
Asante Gini 6 in 1
Crucial 6 in 1 Reader

Dazzle 6-in1 Reader
Proporta 7-in-1 Reader
Sandisk ImageMate Memory Stick Pro Reader

Card Cases

Handspring Springboard
MemPlug CF & MemPlug Smart Media

PQI SD and Mini SD Memory Cards
Posted June, 2005 by Lisa Gade, Editor in Chief

PQI has been in the computer memory business for quite some time and in recent years they've made flash memory as well. PQI makes all kinds of flash media: SD, mini SD, MMC, RS-MMC and CF cards. Their SD and CF cards are available in a variety of speed ratings, and they sent us their fastest SD card, the 60x model with a 9MB/sec transfer rate. Their 256 meg mini SD card benchmarked nearly as fast as their 60x SD card. Not all flash memory is created equal in terms of speed: high speed cards sport both faster read and write times, making them the perfect selection for video playback and use in digital cameras. PQI cards are available at stores such as Fry's Electronics and at reasonable prices.

PQI's 60x SD card is available in capacities ranging from 256 meg to 2 gigs. We tested the 256 meg 60x card and found it to be both fast and reliable in a variety of PDAs and smartphones from the Treo 650 to the i-mate JAM to the Dell Axim X30 to the Palm Tungsten T3 and LifeDrive. The benchmark numbers below show that the card performs well and holds its own against very fast cards such as ATP's 60x SD card reviewed here and beating out the SanDisk Extreme III card reviewed here. While ATP's 60x card boasts faster write speeds, the PQI card is faster on read speeds. For PDA use, read speeds are the most important to ensure smooth video and MP3 playback, while digital camera users are concerned with write speeds (how fast the camera can write and image to the card).


Mini SD cards aren't usually sold in variety of speeds yet since they're used in mobile phones which don't have the fastest processors or speed requirements. That doesn't mean these cards are slow; they tend to be the same speed as standard SD cards. And PQI's card is downright fast: it's nearly as fast as their 60x SD card and a bit faster than the impressive ATP mini SD card.

Mini SD cards are the same width as standard SD cards but are only half as long. They use the same connector as standard SD cards, but you'll use the included adapter to use them in devices that take standard SD cards such as card readers and PDAs.

Of course, you're buying this card because you have a mobile phone with a mini SD slot and the card works perfectly in those. We tested the card in the Audiovox SMT5600 and it worked flawlessly. The card's fast write times are ideal for devices like the Motorola MPx220, whose 1.23MP camera creates relatively larger files which take longer to write than VGA images. Don't confuse Mini SD cards with Nokia's new RS-MMC cards which are used in recent phones like the Nokia 7610. They look the same but these Nokias can only use RS-MMC cards, which PQI also sells.

PQI's cards are very fast, beating SanDisk's SD and Mini SD card in our tests. Their cards are available in a variety of capacities, including large capacities. Speed and high capacity usually mean high prices, but PQI cards are reasonably priced at most retailers.

Price varies by capacity and card type

web site:


Benchmarks Using VFSMark on the Palm Tungsten T3



card packaging


Deals and Shopping!




PQI 256 meg SD Card

File Create: 469%
File Delete: 456%
File Write: 35%
File Read: 703%
File Seek: 1311%
DB Export: 133%
DB Import: 1156%
Record Access: 1064%
Resource Access: 984%

VFSMark: 701

PQI Mini SD Card

File Create: 1106%
File Delete: 931%
File Write: 57%
File Read: 760%
File Seek: 1072%
DB Export: 159%
DB Import: 930%
Record Access: 1034%
Resource Access: 984%

VFSMark: 781




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