Novatech USB Flash Memory
I've just taken delivery of one of the new USB flash memory sticks from Novatech (http://www.novatech.co.uk). I chose the 128 Mb flash memory just to fill an order - it was cheap and I needed something to store documents on.
Note: The Novatech USB Flash Memory stick is a branded A-DATA PD2 (http://www.adata.com.tw/en/products-f-usb-pd2.htm) USB memory stick.
|Read speed||Approx 4.3 Mb/s|
|Write speed||900 Kb/s|
|Compatibility||Windows Me/2000/XP (Windows 98 requires separate drivers available for download from Novatech)|
Don't expect any fancy packaging or instructions - all you get is the memory stick in a small padded envelope, but for £10 what did I expect. In the bag along with the memory stick you get a long lanyard and end cap to cover the USB connector.
I plugged it into my PC and the system picked up on it immediately and after a few seconds Windows XP had detected it as new hardware and it was ready to use.
Copying files to the devices was speedy and the read speed was acceptable. The cool blue LED at the end of the memory stick is really handy for knowing when the key is in use.
The stick is small (pretty much thumb sized) and light and has a thin profile so it fits into all USB posts, even those with other cables and devices connected either side (something that other USB flash memory devices, such as the Disgo, could find problematic because of their size). I've read reports that these devices are quite robust, even surviving trips through the washing machine.
There are some niggling downsides. I don't like the end cap because it's small, poorly clipped on and I can't see myself having it in 3 months. Also, the lanyard (long enough to wear around the neck) has a really poor plastic clip. When the clip breaks, it would be easy to lose the memory stick and any data on it. To avoid losing the memory stick I'd suggest giving the lanyard a wide berth and if you want to protect the data from prying eyes I'd suggest a commercial encryption package, such as PGP.
Downsides aside though, it's a great bit of kit for the price that should last you years.