A Short Course Book
Curtin's Guide to Digital Cameras
And Other Photographic Equipment

Transferring Images

If a card is smaller than a slot, you can usually find an adapter that mates the two. Some adapters accept a variety of cards Courtesy of SanDisk at www.sandisk.com.
Sandisk makes an SD card that folds to reveal a USB connector so it can be plugged in without using a slot or card or card reader.
The Kodak EasyShare One's WiFi compatibility lets you post images on a Web site or e-mail them using a home network or public hot spot. Photo courtesy of Kodak at www.kodak.com.
A Nikon camera with WiFi connectability.
Storage in the camera is only meant to be temporary. When you want to edit the images or make room for new ones, you transfer them to the computer.

Transferring Photos—Card Readers, Slots and Docks

One of the most common ways to transfer images to a computer is using a card reader or card slot that accepts your card with or without an adapter. Card slots are increasingly being built into computers, printers, and even TV sets. If your system doesn't have one there are readers that will plug into the USB port.
Card readers are often connected to a computer's USB port, or may even be built in. Cards inserted into a slot are treated just as if they were a removable hard drive. Cards vary in size and have different connections so many readers now have a variety of slots. Photo courtesy of PQI at www.pqi1st.com.
Some home printers, kiosks at photo stores, and even TV sets have slots that accept cards directly from your camera so you can view or print images without a computer. Courtesy of Hewlett Packard at www.hp.com.

One thing to be aware of is that newer computers and card readers have a ExpressCard slot instead of the older CardBus PC card slot. If your computer is equipped with one of these newer slots, your old adapter for memory cards won't work and you will have to get a new one. Shown here on the left is an older PC card. To its right are the two ExpressCard module sizes-- 34mm or 54mm wide by 5mm thick by 75mm long.
Another popular way to transfer photos is by way of cables. The most popular connections at the moment are USB 2.0 and Firewire 800 (IEE 1394b).
Almost all cameras come with a USB or Firewire (IEEE 1394) cable you use to connect it to a computer or printer. Courtesy of Canon at www.powershot.com.
Cable connections on the back of Apple's Mac Mini with USB and Firewire (IEEE 1394) logos and connectors to the left of the headphone plug. Courtesy of Apple at www.apple.com.
A dock lets you easily connect a camera to a printer or computer and even charge the camera's batteries. Unfortunately, docks are camera-model specific so if you buy another camera you'll need another way to make your connections. Courtesy of Kodak at www.kodak.com.
USB cables have a standard plug at the computer end but those on the camera end aren't standardized—a source of endless frustration for those with more than one camera. Photo courtesy of Shokai Far East Ltd at www. shokaifareast.com.

Transferring Photos—Wireless Connections

One of the latest trends is to eliminate cable clutter using wireless connections between devices such as cameras and printers and between the camera and networks where you can immediately share your photos using e-mail, photosharing sites, or photo blogs. There are three basic approaches:
  • Infrared connects line-of-sight devices where the infrared beam isn't blocked.
  • WiFi connects to wireless printers, kiosks and WiFi networks like those in home networks and public hot spots. It is built into some cameras and can be purchased separately for others. Camera phones send photos over the operator's network but you are at their mercy when it comes to pricing. Some phones also let you connect to WiFi networks so you can cut your transfer costs.
  • Bluetooth connects to nearby devices such as printers and kiosks. Many camera phones come equipped with Bluetooth so it's easy to print images at kiosks.

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