Kingston MobileLite G3 Memory Card Reader (FCR-MLG3)
Whether you need to copy photos from your camera’s memory card or put some music on a microSD card for your smartphone or MP3 player, using a memory card reader is easier than getting tangled about with cables. The Kingston MobileLite G3 memory card reader is one of the least expensive and most convenient card readers around. I’ve been using the MobileLite G2 for years and decided to finally upgrade to G3 for USB 3.0 and SDXC compatibility.
- Small and portable
- Sliding covers for protection when not in use
- USB 3.0
- Compatible with SDXC and microSDXC
- Build quality not as good as G2
PACKAGING & CONTENTS
The MobileLite G3 comes in a blister pack with a mini lanyard attached. The only documentation that comes with it lists card and OS compatability. There’s also a simple diagram, displaying how the ends slide in and out and where to insert the cards.
I’ve tried several different types of memory card readers and other than internal card readers, I find the MobileLite G series of card readers to be the most convenient. The G3, like the older G2, has two card slots on one end (SD/SDHC/SDXC and microSD/microSDHC/microSDXC).
The other end of the G3 has the USB plug. Both ends have sliding covers for protection when not in use. It makes traveling with the G3 pretty easy; you can just throw the G3 in your pocket or bag and off you go.
The G3’s design is identical to the G2’s, which is a good thing. The only difference between them, design-wise, is the color scheme. Both card readers also have a faint blue activity light as well.
PERFORMANCE & USAGE
Upgraded from the G2, the G3 now supports microSDXC and SDXC cards. When testing the read/write performance, I compared the G2 and G3 using a Class 10 Transcend SDHC card. The performance increase was negligible, because the card itself only supports speeds of 25MB/s read and 17MB/s write. I got speeds of 22MB/s read and 21MB/s write with the G2 over USB 2.0. The G3 scored 23MB/s read and 21MB/s write. It’s important to note, that just because you’re on USB 3.0, you won’t necessarily see better performance. The speed of the memory card will probably be a bottleneck.
I also want to mention that the build quality of the G3 seems to have gone down a bit from the G2, which might be why the warranty has also decreased from 5 years, to 2 years. The sliding mechanism that covers the card slots was loose in the G3 I tested and made a rattling noise when I shook it. The G2 was not nearly as loose and didn’t rattle nearly as much. Also, for some reason, the G3 didn’t insert into my USB port as smoothly as the G2. It seemed a bit tight. Still, none of these concerns had any impact on performance.
The MobileLite series of memory card readers by Kingston is my favorite, by far. The G3 is very inexpensive and now supports microSDXC/SDXC cards and USB 3.0. It’s important to note, however, that going to USB 3.0 won’t necessarily improve performance, as it will depend on the speed of the memory card. I’m a little disappointed that the build quality of the G3 seems to have gone down from the G2, but it seems to perform well, just the same. If you’re looking for an inexpensive portable memory card reader, the Kingston MobileLite G3 is worth a look.
Available from Amazon.com.