CFMulti DSLR CompactFlash media card adapter review

CFMulti DSLR CompactFlash media card adapter review

Need to transfer photos from a CompactFlash-equipped camera to a Mac with an SDXC card slot? No problem with the CFMulti

With the exception of the Mac Pro, every Mac that's available these days has a built-in SDXC card slot. That makes it convenient to transfer digital photos and video from cameras that use SD card slots. If you prefer a camera that uses CompactFlash you're not out of luck, fortunately. The solution for that problem is the CFMulti from Synchrotech.

The CFMulti is a CompactFlash-format flash media card reader. It works with SDHC, SD, MMC, MMC+ and even Eye-Fi cards (with some caveats).

My first DSLR is an older Canon model that uses CompactFlash. It shows some wear but it's still going strong years after I first picked it up. I use it regularly. When I got my Retina MacBook Pro last year, I didn't have a good way of moving files between the devices except to use a USB cable or an external USB flash media reader.

Either option was slow and cumbersome. Either way, I ended up with a cable or USB box in the bottom of my backpack or cluttering my desk. I bought the CFMulti after I read about it on the Digital Photography Review forums.

With the CFMulti inserted into the Canon EOS 30D's body, I'm able to take as many pictures as my SDHC cards can hold. When it comes time to transfer the files, I simply pop out the CFMulti from the Canon, pull the SD card, then slide it into the SDXC slot reader on the side of my Mac. I import the photos into my photo cataloging app, eject the card and start over again.

That caveat I mentioned about Eye-Fi cards: It's limited. Read Synchrotech's FAQ to learn more about the limitations.

The good

  • Less bulky and cluttering than cable or USB adapter.
  • Works with several different varieties of Flash media card.
  • Keeps you working with the camera you prefer.

The bad

  • Limited Eye-Fi compatibility

$28 - Buy now

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Peter Cohen

Mac Managing Editor of iMore and weekend Apple Product Professional at a local independent Apple reseller. Follow him on Twitter @flargh

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Reader comments

CFMulti DSLR CompactFlash media card adapter review


Is there a bandwidth overhead? Will it write slower than a native CF card in a DSLR? (Something to consider with a body like a 5dmk2, etc)

UDMA and SDXC transfer rates are pretty comparable. Controller speeds are different and that often favors CompactFlash, so there may be some speed penalty.