- Created on 01 September 2009
As flash memory becomes cheaper and the capacities increase, the race is on with manufacturers to produce the fastest and most reliable drives possible. Alongside this, the design of usb key drives are increasingly being evolved to appeal to niche markets or to fulfil vital roles in a variety of workplaces.
With respect to the latter consideration Dane-Elec produce a variety ofUSB key drives in various novel forms and sizes including gel coated drives which we have previously reviewed (Dane-Elec Mini-Mate). The latest iteration in the design process has been the production of two miniature surfboard shaped USB key drives (the KUTA and Maori) in order to give a bit more interest to what are fairly boring devices as far as the aesthetics go.
We were sent a Dane-Elec KUTA 2GB USB memory stick to review and it certainly stands out from the crowd. The drive casing mimics a shortboard surfbaord design with attractive surf style detailing. There is a hole suitable for attaching the surfboard to a keyring at the base of the drive and the overall size is still just right for fitting in a pocket. The USB interface is located in the middle of the board with the top half of the board acting as the cap of the device.
Dane-Elec recommends the memory stick for data storage and the 2GB of storage is capable of storing 800 5MPix images, 500 8Mpix images, 500 MP3/WMA music files or up to 3 hours of MPEG4 video. We tested the read and write speeds of the drive using "Flash Memory toolkit" and the drive averaged write speeds of ~6.0MB/sec and average read speeds of ~18MB/sec which makes the drive suitable for most peoples purposes and we have no doubt that the drive would happily run a pen drive linux OS.
The Dane-Elec Kuta pen drive is available with capacities up to 16GB and are comparable in price to other similar capacity drives and in our opinion provides a novel and fun design that will appeal to anyone sick of the sight of the humble USB "pen drive" and the drives even come with a 5 year warranty.
Amazon: Dane-Elec Kuta