OCZ 8GB Mega-Kart USB2 Drive
Author: Zahn Funk
Editor: Shawn Knight
Date: 11-18-2006
Provided by: OCZ Technology
Pages:
Conclusion

If I had to sum up my opinion of the OCZ 8GB Mega-Kart in one phrase it would be, "bigger is not always better". I applaud OCZ for the design of the Mega-Kart. When most other manufacturers only offer more traditional "thumb" shaped drives, OCZ is the first I've seen to come out with one sized to fit in your wallet. In fact I did carry it there, back and forth to work, in and out of the car, sitting at my desk, etc. and the Mega-Kart handled it well. It did thicken my wallet a noticeable amount though, at least my butt noticed, so I started slipping it into my shirt pocket or the front pocket of my jeans for better comfort. If I didn't already have my door security key card in my wallet the Mega-Kart probably wouldn't have bothered me there. Even so, it's slim enough not to create a noticeable bulge in my pants like many other thumb drives would... "is that a USB drive in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?".

I haven't decided yet how I feel about the USB connector cable. On one hand it's beneficial to have the plug on a flexible cable for those hard-to-reach or awkwardly-positioned USB ports, but on the other it seems more fragile and kinda unwieldy when you're trying to plug or unplug the connector with the card dangling around in the way. When it comes to capacity, 8GB is quite a lot of space for a flash drive, and kudos to OCZ for making a 16GB version as well. I thought the Mega-Kart would come in real handy for me. I've been using a DVD+RW disc to hold my data backups and I'm close to the point where my stuff soon won't fit on one blank disc. It'd be nice to be able to carry it all around with me when I'm on the go, without fear of cracking or scratching a DVD.

But frankly, I found the Mega-Kart to be too darn slow. When copying lots of files in my tests, the write speed slowed down to a turtle's pace, only 0.3MB/s. It fared no better when I ran my weekly backup (which normally takes ~45min to copy and verify on DVD+RW) and that 4˝GB of data of mine took over 4 hours to copy, never mind running a verify afterwards. Forget about downloading those files quickly on your way out the door or performing a speedy file and settings transfer from one computer to another. You better plan on starting your save way beforehand unless you've got a lot of time to kill. Once you've got your data on the Mega-Kart, if most of it is fairly static you could probably get by okay with just doing an incremental backup, or only copying over those files that have changed recently.

Price-wise I found the OCZ Mega-Kart comparable to other manufacturer's 8GB drives available on the market, if not slightly cheaper, especially with the rebates OCZ is currently offering on many of their flash drives. It came to only $130 at one popular online retailer, when other brands are going for $20 to $30 more. The 16GB version is more than double the price, well over the $300 mark, however from what I could tell it's one of only a handful of 16GB flash drives out right now. Unless you absolutely need the space however I suggest you check out OCZ's Rally or Rally 2 line of performance flash drives, I guarantee you'll be much more pleased with the speed.

Pros

Large Capacity
Slim Wallet-sized Card

Cons

Extremely Poor Write Performance


Thanks to OCZ for providing the 8GB Mega-Kart for review.


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