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Read Reviews on USB Gadgets Before Buying

Jul 1, 2008
A portable CD/DVD disposal unit that plugs into the USB port. That's what CD Destroyer from Vubest of Taiwan is. At the touch of a button, the device scratches circular patterns on CD's readable surface rendering its contents useless in six seconds. It's not very clear how the company's claims that this is the eco-friendly and safest way to get rid of your optical media, but if you do not have the knack for physically snapping your CD into half or putting them into the microwave, this is your next best bet. CD Destroyer is light and comes with a USB cable and a leather carrying case.

Piles of slides and negatives can be quite costly to convert through an external service provider. Breathe new life into your old 35mm slides and film negatives by converting them into digital images with the Slide/Film Digital Converter, which connects to your Windows XP computer via USB 2.0 cable. One-touch scanning, three LED for backlighting and a 5MP CMOS sensor ensure that you will get aligned output, exposure control and color balance. The result: quality images up to 1800 dpi that you can edit with the included software. Turn negatives into positives, crop and resize as you wish. Your memories have never looked better.

Are your vinyl LPs and cassette tapes gathering dust on your music room shelf? Here are some USB powered solutions for converting your analog music into digital. ionAudio's USB Cassette Archiver turns your audio tapes into CDs or MP3. It uses Audacity software and EZ Tape Converter, and is PC and Mac compatible. No drivers required. For your vinyl records, ionAudio also has a Vinyl Recording Portable USB Turntable for 11, 45 and 78 rpm records. It utilizes Audacity software and Vinyl Converter by MixMeister, reduces noise for quality sound output, and can be battery-powered on the go. The best part? They're surprisingly affordable for such quality output.

Did you know that the design of the Olympic torch came from the design team at Lenovo, which worked on it for ten months? The winning "Cloud of Promise" design is not only on the torch, but also on Lenovo laptops and USB drives, as the company is a worldwide sponsor of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. The laptops look more impressive than the storage devices, which are only available in China. Souvenir hunters will be happy to pick these up in Beijing during the Games, but the limited distribution points to one thing: the Olympics may not be so hot elsewhere.

They may not look fancy, but IronKey calls its USB drives the world's most secure. And they are certainly the most sophisticated ones out in the market today. Read speeds reach up to 30 MBps and write speeds up to 20 MBps. IronKey employs AES hardware encryption and secure online backup for password recovery. It cannot be hacked, rendering other password manager software program on regular USB drives inferior. The drive is tamper-proof, housed in waterproof metal casing, and will self-destruct in case of physical attack. The interior components are sealed in an epoxy-based potting compound. IronKey works on Windows XP and Windows Vista computers without drivers or software. It is designed with business, military and government use in mind. IronKey comes in 1GB, 2GB, 4GB, or 8GB for Basic, Personal or Enterprise use, with prices starting at $79.
About the Author
Jon Caldwell is a professional content manager. Much of his articles can be found at http://usbgadgetsguide.com
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