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Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by ghall, Aug 19, 2006.
I'm getting a MacBook Pro, and I whould like to know what an ExpressCard is. What is it's purpose?
The ExpressCard is the next generation of PC-CARD aka PCMCIA. It is an expansion slot for notebooks. Capabale of PCI-Express bus speeds.
Google is your friend
So is Wikipedia
The gist: it's like a smaller faster PCMCIA card. Useful for the same things. That is... if you can find a Mac compatible one that is actually useful.
That doesnt help me.
What would you like then? You asked what it is, do you want specific examples or devices? If so, have you tried google?
If that doesn't help you, then the odds are good that you wouldn't use the slot.
Help yourself dude...
In some notebooks, there are the "old" PC-card slots (aka PCMCIA). You can use them for many things. It's like an expansion port. You can out in a card that gives ypu extra USB or FireWire ports, a wireless internet card and so on.
The Expresscard/34 is a newer technology, which can do pretty much the same. Since there are really no useful Mac compatible cards for Expresscard/34, it's kinda obsolete on the MBP. However, if they were upgraded to Expresscard/54, they would be very useful.
Thank you, that was very helpful! I think I understand now.
Thats not true!
I can add additional FW/USB ports, or eSATA, or other cool stuff like that
though I would like /54 for memory readers etc.
Why not just get a USB2 memory card reader?
Sure it is "outside" (gasp) of your computer, however USB2 will outperform even the highest end memory cards avaliable today.
I have one. And it depends on your particular card reader and card.
If I had lots of $, I'd have the Sandisk Extreme IV FW800 card reader with Extreme IV CF cards. But I do like to eat.
I found this on pcmag.com: "The ExpressCard is a plug-in module that superseded the PC Card standard for adding functionality to laptops. ExpressCard boosted the data rate from 132 to 342 Mbytes/sec. It supports USB 2.0 and single lane PCI Express and can use both of these channels in the same module at the same time (see USB and PCI Express)"
Smaller than PC Cards:
ExpressCards are PC cards (PC Cards are plug-in modules that contain devices such as a modem, network adapter, sound card, solid state drive or hard disk) 11 mm shorter than PC Cards and come in two widths: 54 mm and 34 mm. ExpressCard 54 mm slots accommodate both sizes.
An Internal USB Solution:
The ExpressCard eliminates the need to carry an external USB storage device and cable. For example, a USB hard drive or flash drive can remain within the laptop when traveling, with, at most, a small protrusion jutting out from the side. See PC Card.
Hope this is useful
You can also add an ExpressCard 3G modem which does not stick out as much as a USB 3G dongle (subject to carrier support).