You know the story - you are out and about with the digital camera snapping away and suddenly you realise that you’ve run out of shots. At this point you’ve got two options: the first is to find a quiet spot and start deleting images you don’t want, the second is to hope that you’ve packed an additional memory card to load up for the next reel.
In steps Delkin with an ingenious idea - the USB Bridge. It’s a device that allows to you to link two USB devices together to transfer data without the need of a computer. Powered by two AA batteries, the small unit is about the size of a pack of cards. Both sides offer USB1.1 connectors and on the top there are three buttons; power, transfer and verify.
The unit works by plugging into one side a digital camera or MP3 player for example and then a USB memory stick, card reader, external hard drive or even a USB powered CD-RW drive in to the other. Once both units are connected it’s simply a case of pressing the transfer button and away it goes. At the end of the transfer you can press the verify button to see that the data has been transferred correctly. This is a nice touch as most of the units you are going to transfer to are unlikely to have digital displays to see any images that have been transferred. Once complete you are free to delete away on your camera, MP3 player, USB memory stick etc and start again.
On the whole the unit is a good idea and in our tests performed as it said it would. The unit isn’t without its downsides however, mainly that apart from two LEDs that flash green, red and orange to try and illustrate progress there is no feedback as to what is actually going on. It would have been nice to see a transfer meter so you could see how much you’ve transferred and how far you’ve got to go to complete the task. Alongside this you can’t set what you want to transfer - it’s an all or nothing affair.
It would have also been nice to see a battery meter on the unit somewhere, again so you could judge whether or not you’ve got enough juice to carry out a transfer or whether new batteries would be needed. Our final gripe is that it relies on the USB1.1 standard, understandable due to the backwards compatibility of the all the units it has to work with, but it would have been nice to make it USB2.0 for those improved transfer times.
That said, it’s certainly a unit that will get you out of trouble if you’re in the field and don’t want to have to invest in a multitude of extra memory cards for your digital camera.