Register FAQ / Rules Forum Spy Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Go Back   MacRumors Forums > Apple Hardware > Notebooks > MacBook Air

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old Apr 1, 2013, 12:33 AM   #1
AppleAdam
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Review of the "MiniDrive Air" w/ photos

Bought this for $30 on Amazon. Was initially a bit worried about color/quality and lack of photos, so thought I would share. This is my first post - enjoy;
(Edit: 4/10/13 - by popular demand here are more details :) )

In summary, it works great, blends nicely with the aluminum chassis and shipped super quick. I ordered it on a Tuesday and got it Friday. Unlike the Kickstarter "NiftyDrive", "TheMiniDrive" from Amazon did not have issues (not being able to write to it, needing to put tape on it, having the face plate break off, etc.) The Mini Drive has worked great out of the box - i did have to pull it out and re-inset it to get it to read once, but it has worked flawlessly since.

This is the website of the MiniDrive (different company then the kickstarter one): www.TheMiniDrive.com
This is a link to the one I bought via Amazon: TheMiniDrive Air on Amazon




The "unboxing"



Outside of the packaging



Wrapped around the MiniDrive is red wire. The wire is used to remove it after you insert it into the SD slot. It is bendy.



Half-way stuck into the computer



Fully stuck into the computer It is COMPLETELY flush.



Another angle of it stuck into the computer. Again, it is completely flush and feels nice when you run your finger across it :)



This is a side view with the red wire removed. It completely fills the gap of the slot.



To remove it, you need to stick the wire back into the hole. This took some patients but I got it through the hole on the 3rd try. The trick is to bend the wire into a hook before you try to stick it into the hole.



I got the 64gb Sandisk UHS1 card. I was a bit worried about speed, but it has not been an issue. I watch movies with out a problem and transferring files is pretty fast.





This is the one from this website: www.TheMiniDrive.com

Last edited by AppleAdam; Apr 10, 2013 at 07:06 PM. Reason: Was asked to add more detail
AppleAdam is offline   2 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2013, 12:36 AM   #2
justperry
macrumors 603
 
justperry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: 7 Km South of an active upside down (boat) volcano.
Hmm, didn't they have problems with the first batch.

Edit: Review, Photo's where????
justperry is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2013, 12:39 AM   #3
simsaladimbamba
macrumors Core
 
simsaladimbamba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: located
Where is the review and where are the photos?
__________________
living on the moderately profane edge
simsaladimbamba is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2013, 12:44 AM   #4
AppleAdam
Thread Starter
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Fixed

Quote:
Originally Posted by simsaladimbamba View Post
Where is the review and where are the photos?
Quote:
Originally Posted by justperry View Post
Edit: Review, Photo's where????
Fixed.

Edit: 4/10/13 - Fixed even more!

Last edited by AppleAdam; Apr 10, 2013 at 07:08 PM.
AppleAdam is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2013, 12:55 AM   #5
simsaladimbamba
macrumors Core
 
simsaladimbamba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: located
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleAdam View Post
Fixed.
What is fixed? The problems with the first batch or the photos? And there is still no review, unless the text you wrote counts as review for you.
__________________
living on the moderately profane edge
simsaladimbamba is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2013, 01:34 AM   #6
jkim13
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Looks exactly like what I got except you got better packaging. The colored edge is a little darker than the silver on the MBA but it's close enough that it's not too noticeable at a glance.

Worked as soon as I stuck it in and works just like any SD card. No issues reading or writing.
jkim13 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2013, 01:37 AM   #7
simsaladimbamba
macrumors Core
 
simsaladimbamba's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: located
Quote:
Originally Posted by jkim13 View Post
Looks exactly like what I got except you got better packaging. The colored edge is a little darker than the silver on the MBA but it's close enough that it's not too noticeable at a glance.

Worked as soon as I stuck it in and works just like any SD card. No issues reading or writing.
Have you ever benchmarked the read and write speeds with this thing?
__________________
living on the moderately profane edge
simsaladimbamba is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2013, 01:49 AM   #8
justperry
macrumors 603
 
justperry's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: 7 Km South of an active upside down (boat) volcano.
Good photo's but still no review.
justperry is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2013, 07:41 AM   #9
ColdCase
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: NH
Nice photos. I just installed the same one. It is just a passive adapter, the performance depends entirely on the micro SD card you use with it (purchased separately). I used a SanDisk Ultra 64 GB MicroSDXC Class 10 UHS-1 Memory Card without issue. Read speeds are great, writes a bit slower than the internal SSD, but much faster than a external USB SSD. I have not run benchmarks, but there are quite a few reviews out there.

Physically it does fit flush but the plastic is not quite the same color or have the smooth finish as the MBA case. It could be a better match, but not as bad as some other attempts.
__________________
rMBP15 (2014-SJE1-2.6-16-SM1024), LG27EA83D, SYDS212JK2, LaCie Big5, a few MacBooks, a couple iMacs, AppleTV, Time Capsule, MacPro early 08, G4 Dual gigbit enet, Cube G4, some older stuff.
ColdCase is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2013, 12:19 PM   #10
emartins
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by simsaladimbamba View Post
Have you ever benchmarked the read and write speeds with this thing?

I have ran tests through blackmagic and I get about 10 write and 35 read. I only store my itunes music on it so its fine for what I need it for.

I use the SanDisk 64gb ultra mini sd card.
emartins is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2013, 02:32 PM   #11
Boyd01
macrumors 6502a
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: New Jersey Pine Barrens
Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdCase View Post
Read speeds are great, writes a bit slower than the internal SSD, but much faster than a external USB SSD.
I believe the internal slot is also connected to the USB bus. So (all things being equal), why would it be "much faster than an external SSD"? For example, if you placed that same SanDisk Ultra 64 GB MicroSDXC Class 10 card in an *external* USB reader, wouldn't the performance be exactly the same?
Boyd01 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 1, 2013, 02:54 PM   #12
ColdCase
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: NH
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boyd01 View Post
I believe the internal slot is also connected to the USB bus. So (all things being equal), why would it be "much faster than an external SSD"? For example, if you placed that same SanDisk Ultra 64 GB MicroSDXC Class 10 card in an *external* USB reader, wouldn't the performance be exactly the same?
The internal SD card reader is on the much faster PCI bus, not a USB kludge.
__________________
rMBP15 (2014-SJE1-2.6-16-SM1024), LG27EA83D, SYDS212JK2, LaCie Big5, a few MacBooks, a couple iMacs, AppleTV, Time Capsule, MacPro early 08, G4 Dual gigbit enet, Cube G4, some older stuff.
ColdCase is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 2013, 02:59 AM   #13
Trey M
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleAdam View Post
Bought this for $30 on Amazon. Was initially a bit worried about color/quality and lack of photos, so thought I would share.

This is my first post - enjoy;

Thanks for the pictures- I literally have not yet seen what the actual Minidrive Air looks like inside the Air! Can't believe they sell it as a separate product yet don't even have a picture on their website or Amazon of the adapter in the computer. I'm glad it blends nicely with the computer, it looks very stock.

On a side note, does anyone know if the Minidrive Air will fit into a rMBP 15'' ? As you can see in my signature, I own both of these machines, but I don't really want to spend $30 on a small piece of plastic unless I'll be able to use it with both machines. Appreciate the help! And thanks AppleAdam for the pics!
__________________
(Mid 2012) 15'' Retina Display Macbook Pro | 16GB RAM;
(Mid 2012) 13'' Macbook Air | 8GB RAM, 128GB SSD;
iPad Mini | Black 16GB;
iPhone 5 | Black 32GB
Trey M is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 2013, 05:46 AM   #14
Boyd01
macrumors 6502a
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: New Jersey Pine Barrens
Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdCase View Post
The internal SD card reader is on the much faster PCI bus, not a USB kludge.
What do you base that assertion on? I have a late 2011 MacBook Air, and I just checked this to confirm. The reader is on the USB bus. Perhaps they changed this on the 2012 models? It's easy enough to check for yourself...

So again, I don't see what the advantage is to using the internal slot - aside from convenience. The same card in an external reader should give the same performance.... shouldn't it?
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	sdcard.jpg
Views:	151
Size:	95.9 KB
ID:	405835  
Boyd01 is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 2013, 07:17 AM   #15
edsono
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
I've read a lot of reports, in Amazon reviews, about problems when reformating the SanDisk Ultra 64 GB MicroSDXC. So I want to ask if you did reformatted for MacOs Extended filesystem, or used it on default ExFat format.

Thanks in advance...
Edson
edsono is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 2013, 08:29 AM   #16
ColdCase
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: NH
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boyd01 View Post
What do you base that assertion on? I have a late 2011 MacBook Air, and I just checked this to confirm. The reader is on the USB bus. Perhaps they changed this on the 2012 models? It's easy enough to check for yourself...

So again, I don't see what the advantage is to using the internal slot - aside from convenience. The same card in an external reader should give the same performance.... shouldn't it?
Apple support says:

"Macs that use the USB bus to communicate with the SD card slot have a maximum speed of up to 480 Mbit/s. Newer Macs use the PCIe bus to communicate with the SD card slot and can transfer data at a much faster rate."

However Anandtech says: "Max performance of the MBA reader appears to be capped at 40MB/s" The MBP was shown to have a 80MB/s rate.

I think the MBA may not have been updated yet. Don't have the MBA handy but this is what a rMBP shows:
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	SDSlot.png
Views:	109
Size:	242.7 KB
ID:	405841  
__________________
rMBP15 (2014-SJE1-2.6-16-SM1024), LG27EA83D, SYDS212JK2, LaCie Big5, a few MacBooks, a couple iMacs, AppleTV, Time Capsule, MacPro early 08, G4 Dual gigbit enet, Cube G4, some older stuff.
ColdCase is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 2013, 08:44 AM   #17
Boyd01
macrumors 6502a
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: New Jersey Pine Barrens
Quote:
Originally Posted by ColdCase View Post
Don't have the MBA handy but this is what a rMBP shows:
Well we're in the MBA forum here. Maybe someone with a 2012 MBA can check this?

When I first got my MBA I was excited over the prospect of the card slot. So I tried a 16GB 10x card and it took forever to copy some big files to it. I didn't benchmark it, but it sure wasn't anything like I would expect from a fast hard disk. After that, I never bothered with the slot again.

Last edited by Boyd01; Apr 2, 2013 at 09:28 AM.
Boyd01 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 2013, 09:09 AM   #18
jkim13
macrumors newbie
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trey M View Post
Thanks for the pictures- I literally have not yet seen what the actual Minidrive Air looks like inside the Air! Can't believe they sell it as a separate product yet don't even have a picture on their website or Amazon of the adapter in the computer. I'm glad it blends nicely with the computer, it looks very stock.

On a side note, does anyone know if the Minidrive Air will fit into a rMBP 15'' ? As you can see in my signature, I own both of these machines, but I don't really want to spend $30 on a small piece of plastic unless I'll be able to use it with both machines. Appreciate the help! And thanks AppleAdam for the pics!
You can use it but it wont sit flush as in the MBA. They have a rMBP specific model on Amazon
jkim13 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 2013, 11:49 AM   #19
Seamaster
macrumors 6502a
 
Seamaster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Quote:
Originally Posted by Boyd01 View Post
Well we're in the MBA forum here. Maybe someone with a 2012 MBA can check this?
This is what my 2013 MBA reports:

__________________
MacBook Air 13" 128GB | iPad mini 16GB | iPhone 4S 16GB | Time Capsule 2TB | Apple TV 3
Seamaster is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 2, 2013, 01:39 PM   #20
Boyd01
macrumors 6502a
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: New Jersey Pine Barrens
Quote:
Originally Posted by Seamaster View Post
This is what my 2013 MBA reports
Thanks - that's an "upgrade" that I had not read about anywhere before, good to know.

Is there actually such a thing as a 2013 MBA yet? I got mine in Feb 2012, but it's a 2011 model and the 2012 models came later in the year.
Boyd01 is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 3, 2013, 07:50 PM   #21
Acorn
macrumors 68020
 
Acorn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
at 10 mbs that is worthless for any real usage. yea maybe music would be tolerable but anything else would really suck to use. this is one of those add ons where you put up with waiting 7 hours to load the data on it and never move the data again.
Acorn is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 4, 2013, 03:26 AM   #22
JonLa
macrumors 6502
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
That was Nifty's Minidrive that had problems with the first batch - this is "The MiniDrive" - different company with a clone product, as far as I can tell
JonLa is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 5, 2013, 10:45 AM   #23
Seamaster
macrumors 6502a
 
Seamaster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Be cautious of ordering one of these from Nifty. The discussion on their Kickstarter page suggests they've done a runner.
__________________
MacBook Air 13" 128GB | iPad mini 16GB | iPhone 4S 16GB | Time Capsule 2TB | Apple TV 3
Seamaster is offline   1 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 5, 2013, 04:01 PM   #24
rdunlap
macrumors member
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Quote:
Originally Posted by Seamaster View Post
Be cautious of ordering one of these from Nifty. The discussion on their Kickstarter page suggests they've done a runner.
I have to take a look at this because I was planning on buying one of these too. Do you have a link to the discussions? I'd like to check it out.
rdunlap is offline   0 Reply With Quote
Old Apr 5, 2013, 04:33 PM   #25
ctdonath
macrumors 65816
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Quote:
Originally Posted by emartins View Post
10 write and 35 read
Units? Presumably megasomethings/sec, but bits or bytes?
ctdonath is offline   0 Reply With Quote

Reply
MacRumors Forums > Apple Hardware > Notebooks > MacBook Air

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:06 PM.

Mac Rumors | Mac | iPhone | iPhone Game Reviews | iPhone Apps

Mobile Version | Fixed | Fluid | Fluid HD
Copyright 2002-2013, MacRumors.com, LLC