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Corsair Flash Voyager USB 2.0 Flash Drive


Product
Flash Memory Device
Date
23rd December 2004
Manufacured By
Supplied By
Price
Author

 

Introduction:::...

The declining prices and increasing capacities of nonvolatile memory has revolutionized the PC storage arena. From MP3 players and digital cameras to motherboard BIOS chips and Flash drives, it has never been easier to cram so much data into such small spaces and carry it with you wherever you go.

We've been singing the praises of the Flash drive for quite a few years here at 3DV, but back when a 16MB unit could easily cast £100+, it wasn't quite so easy to sell the idea of everyone rushing out to buy one as a no-brainer. Things today however are very different and there's really no excuse to not own one of these invaluable little devices.

As capacities climbed, so a problem began to emerge, and that was the length of time it could take to pipe large amounts of data down a USB1.1 connection. Then, just in the nick of time, along came USB2.0 to save the day.

Low prices, high transfer rates and large capacities, all that's left is a robust build quality and a name you can trust. Roll on our next review candidate!

Today I'm reviewing a Flash drive from a company whose reputation in the memory market, and more importantly in the demanding and unforgiving enthusiast memory market, is quite simply second to none...Corsair.

When Corsair announced their expansion into the Flash memory market on the 8th of December, my first though was to wonder what took them so long. As a major player in the SDRAM market for some time now they must surely have considered expanding their portfolio in the past, and they're clearly not afraid of dabbling in challenging areas like water cooling, successfully marketing their innovative and very popular HydroCool kit. Perhaps the market just wasn't right for a move into Flash.

With their announcement came news of two new product families, a range of 40X rated Secure Digital (SD) cards in four capacities up to 1 Gigabyte and a quartet of USB2.0 Flash drive in 128MB, 256MB, 512MB and 1GB capacities.

Corsair have christened their Flash drives "Voyager", and I have a 512MB version here to review today. First, the obligatory specs:

FEATURES

  • Plug & Play functionality in Windows® XP, 2000, ME, Linux 2.4 and later, Mac OS 9, X and later
  • Drivers on CD for Windows® 98
  • Lanyard, USB cable and driver CD included
  • Supports sustained read spead of 19MB/sec
  • Supports sustained write speed of 13MB/sec
  • Ten year warranty

The ten year warranty may seem a little mean for a solid state device, particularly when their SDRAM carries a lifetime warranty, but what people don't always realise is that Flash memory can actually wear out. Well, not wear out in the traditional sense, but the insulating oxide layer around the charge storage mechanism begins to break down as the number of erase processes increases.

Before you run out and buy a Flash drive, step one is to decide what capacity you need. Here's a quick guide courtesy of Corsair:

Let's take a look at the Corsair Voyager and see if it offers anything more than the myriad of Flash drives already on the market:

 

 
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