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X-Micro APEX USB Flash Stick Review - Does It Work?

We've been seeing these pocket drives around for a while now, but do they really work? And even more important, are they easy enough to use to make them convenient? To find out, come join Mike "Darthtanion" Wright as he takes a look at the X-Micro APEX USB Flash Stick. We'll give it a test run and try to answer these very questions!

| USB Drives in Storage | Posted: May 31, 2003 4:00 am

Does It Work?

 

Now that we've taken a peek at what comes in the box, its time to look at the operation of this little thing. After all, we want to make sure that we're getting something that works, don't we?

 

If you'll remember on the last page, I was telling you that the APEX is a simple USB device. But since the USB connector is a bit fatter than most normal cables that you might use in your system, a couple of cable extensions have been added to the package.

 

 

If you happen to have an enclosure that has front mounted USB ports, then you'll find that the small cable should suit your needs nicely. Just plug it into the APEX unit and then to your front mounted USB port.

 

 

If, on the other hand, you happen to have only rear mounted USB ports available to you, then you'll want to make use of the longer cable. It is a full meter in length so should allow you to easily use the APEX device without always having to climb in behind your machine.

 

As far as ease of use, I tried the APEX on several machines that I have access to and every one of them accepted the device with no problems at all. Even systems that have external memory card readers would just add another drive letter and allow you to access it just like a small hard disk. After inserting the APEX, it would load up drivers for a USB Mass Storage Device and then go from there.

 

It should be noted that if you are running a Win98 based machine, there are no native drivers for this type of device. You will have to load the drivers manually BEFORE you install the device into an available USB slot. From there it is smooth sailing.

 

But what about speed?

 

To test this I took a single file of 100MB and started transferring it all over the place. Even better, I tested it on both USB 2.0 capable machines and USB 1.1 capable machines. This will give us an overall picture as to how it performs. Here are the facts and figures that I came up with:

 

 

 

I went ahead and showed both times and rated speeds to give you a full idea as to what we're dealing with here. And as you can see, this little gem works great! And to give you an idea as to selling points, the factory is rating this device at 5MB/sec Read and 4MB/sec Write, so we were able to get an even better data rate than expected.

 

And the uses of an item like this? The possibilities are nearly endless. Whether you're like me and have to occasionally have to bring work home or whether you're wanting a means to easily carry your favorite MP3 files, this APEX unit can handle the load. You could even carry a full movie on the 1GB model, and this being a good quality one as well!

 

Further Reading: Read and find more Storage content at our Storage reviews, guides and articles index page.

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