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Using SmartMedia on the Sharp Zaurus.

I have a personal dislike of multiple media formats, I just don't want to have a CF card for this, a stick for that unless there is a clear reason for doing so. My digital camera (Olympus C3040) was the first device I had with removal media (Palm III didn't have such a concept), I therefore have a range of SmartMedia cards kicking around. When I bought my Z I thought I might have to give in and buy a CF card however I stumbled across the Pretec Compact-SSFDC, a CF caddy for your smart media. A quick call to the local stockist ( and one was on its way to me.

What can I say about it, I've used it without any problems with my 64Mb and my 128Mb SmartMedia cards. Not knowing how fast or slow CF is I can't comment on the performance but I don't really notice any problems. I don't install apps on it, mainly because I mostly use it for music. You can see the spec on the Jactron website

The drawback of the device is that it stands proud of the top of the Z by around 1cm, this makes it dead easy to remove but stops it fitting in to some cases.

Combine this with my Nixvue device (see seperate Nixvue review) and I have a nice mobile storage unit for music and other media which all came as a bonus really as the Nixvue was bought primarily for storing photos while travelling and diving.

Pretec also have a cuinning 3 in 1 convertor to give you SD/MMC and Sony MemoryStick to CF adaptation. Can't comment on it myself, I'd be interested to hear from anyone who has tried it, especially given the present state of the SD driver (fix is coming soon I hear....)

Oh and if you visit the Pretec site, ignore the fact that their page states that the product only supports upto 32Mb cards, it is woefully out of date. The Jactron page is more up to date.

July 11, 2002

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