Lexar Media Inc. fired several shots of its own in the digital camera memory cards war at PMA in Las Vegas by announcing several new cards on Thursday. As MacCentral went to press with this article, pages for these products were not available on the company’s Web site yet.
New Professional Series CompactFlash cards
The first of the new releases was the 8GB Professional Series CompactFlash card, which features a 40x speed rating and a sustained write speed of 6MB per second. It also incorporate Lexar’s new Write Acceleration technology, which gives an in-camera speed boost to the card.
The new 8GB card is a Type II card and requires a camera with a FAT32 file system. It comes with a copy of Lexar’s Image Rescue 2.0 software, which recovers accidentally deleted or damaged files, tests cards for errors, reformats cards, securely erases files, and displays a card’s technical information. Image Rescue 2.0 runs on Mac OS X v.10.1 or higher. You’ll be able to find the 8GB card this May; Lexar will announce pricing at that time.
The company also enhanced the rest of its line of Professional CompactFlash cards by doubling their speed rating to 80x, or a sustained write speed of 12MB per second. The cards in the line feature Write Acceleration technology as well as Image Rescue 2.0 software.
The new 80x cards will be available in stores this May and pricing for the 256MB, 512MB, 1GB, 2GB, and 4GB versions will be US$99.99, $199.99, $399.99, $699.99, and $1,499.99, respectively.
SD memory card enhancements
Lexar’s line of Secure Digital (SD) memory cards have also now doubled capacity on the high end to 1GB; the low end remains 32MB. The new 1GB card will be able to store over 500 high-resolution JPEG pictures, 16 CDs of music, or almost 6 hours of MPEG-4 digital video when it ships this spring. The estimated retail price is $499.99.
This spring, you’ll also be able to find Lexar SD memory cards with speed ratings of 60x, or 9MB per second of sustained write speed. They’ll be available in 256MB and 512MB capacities for $109.99 and $269.99, respectively.
New Memory Stick media
Lexar’s line of Memory Stick cards was also refreshed with data read speeds that are up to four times faster than what’s currently available. Ready for distribution this spring, the new Memory Stick cards will come in 64MB, 128MB, and 256MB capacities, with prices of $39.99, $59.99, and $99.99, respectively.
The new Memory Stick cards will also sport compatibility with serial interface Memory Stick-enabled products and will include MagicGate copy protection technology, which secures such copyrighted material as digital music and images.
32-bit CardBus CompactFlash card reader
Finally, Lexar introduced a new 32-bit CardBus CompactFlash card reader aimed at mobile photographers. It plugs into the PCMCIA slot on your laptop, and the company claims that it offers data transfer speeds similar to FireWire and USB 2.0 card readers, or 16MB per second.
Expect to see the new card reader on store shelves this month, with an expected retail price of $49.99.