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Thread: Why do I need a card reader?

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    BPN Member gail bisson's Avatar
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    Default Why do I need a card reader?

    I wonder if and why I should get a card reader. I am not a pro, shoot on weekends and on workshops and trips. I have never been a machine gun type of photographer eg. on my 4 week trip to Botswana and SA last year I took about 4000 pics.
    I just hook my camera straight to the computer and am happy to do chores or paperwork or talk on the phone while the pics download. So, do i need a card reader? Does it harm the camera to download pics directly?
    Thanks for your advice,
    Gail

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    BPN Member Joel Eade's Avatar
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    I would doubt that it will harm anything but what if you have multiple cards to download and you want to keep using your camera or not risk running down the camera battery? Also you may want to keep full cards from a trip and look at them later before re-formatting and a small card reader is easier to deal with than getting out your camera just to look at the cards.

    Anyway it's a pretty cheap, small, light weight accessory that comes in handy....I always use a card reader and have never downloaded from the camera!

    I actually don't download all my images....I review them in Adobe Bridge and only keep (download) the RAW images of the ones I decide to process.

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    Astrogeek Chris Ober's Avatar
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    It's nice to have a cheap alternative in case the gremlins show up and the computer won't recognize the camera due to corrupt drivers or some other malfunction.
    Chris

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    BPN Member Ian Cassell's Avatar
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    An advantage of the card reader is that it avoids strain on the camera connector jack. My cat decided to walk across the tether wire and pulled my old 30D off the table -- fortunately I caught it in mid-air. I think pulling out the card and putting the camera aside is a safer alternative. My images also seem to download faster through the reader (I use a USB 3.0) than they do through the tether.

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    BPN Member dankearl's Avatar
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    Gail, they are cheap and easy to use.
    Also, I think you have an Ipad, I use a reader to load photos onto my Ipad if I am traveling, A nice safe storage and
    Use it to view photos after a day outside shooting just for fun and to look at them to see if I want to bother to keep them.
    Dan Kearl

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    Hi gail,,,,I just hook up the camera just like you.nice easy,,I have one large card in the camera and try and never take it out.,,,Of course i change cards on big shoots but otherwise try not to take it out ...The reason behind this is( Bent Pins) in camera,, or pins breaking of in the card,,and yes i have seen this a few times.

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    Forum Participant ericbowles's Avatar
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    Gail

    With a small number of images using the camera connector is just fine. But a USB3 card reader is much faster than the camera connection - probably resulting in a 50-75% decrease in the time required.

    The wear and tear factors - and user error with bent pins - are potential issues, but for me a card reader is enough faster to save 5-10 minutes of downloading time. Since after downloading, I rate images and then back everything up to another device, the time savings is important.

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    Forum Participant Jim Neely's Avatar
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    Gail, I got off without a card reader on a trip several years ago. I downloaded from the camera and was shocked at how slow it was.

    As several have said, the card readers are cheap and easy to use, not to mention much faster.

    Good luck.

    jn

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