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Old 04-21-2007, 01:27 AM
Grongle Grongle is offline
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It would be nice, but likely Creative figures that quirk belongs to the USB realm. In fact, a lot of slightly older computers have USB 1 slots at the front and USB 2 at the back. Because printers are often quite happy with USB 1, a lot of people have taken their USB slots for granted for years.

Then, with the purchase of a USB stick or an mp3 recorder/player, they run smack into the world of USBs. Best idea is to Google to that world and spend a day or two learning about USB. There are lots of interesting revelations there, such as the slow speed of file transfer—and how it is that your USB 2.0 device actually works SO much more slowly than USB 2.0 itself can deliver.

Right away you discover that a hungry USB stick will not simply "work faster" on USB 2.0. It will work so much faster that USB 1.0 is bordering on the impossible. You don't have to take a jet to get to the other side of the continent; you can always walk. USB 2.0 is "faster" somewhat similarly, even though your USB device will actually transfer files at a smidgen of the high-speed rate potential.

Some of these devices say they'll work with either USB 1.0 or 2.0. Well, printers often do. But then there has to be some other reason for the freeze-outs, which sure look like memory overload freezes. I've seen nothing about these freezes occuring on USB 1 versus USB 2, but I have to wonder. Furthermore, a lot of folk are definitely going to be using 1.0 when they think they're using 2.0, or vice-versa. The lady was correct in suggesting the installation of a card might do the trick. Well, it would do the trick, but only sometimes would it be absolutely necessary.

I say that because likely the USB snag is, er, uh, closely affiliated with the user's, ah, level of familiarity with the USB environment on his machine. It is not exactly what is missing in the machine that is the problem, so much as what is missing to the north of one's eyeballs.

Your hardware device manager in XP will list all your USB ports for you, but it's not quite that easy. The ports themselves are logical devices which are not exactly the same as your USB plug-ins. You may be quite astonished to see what XP claims is available, and it may not make sense to you at first. Also you'll quickly realize that some USB devices have much bigger appetites than others. If you start changing your printers et al around, be forewarned that a few minutes' easy changes can become a few hours of frustration—just speed slowly, and you'll be okay. Don't change anything unless you have a very clear idea of why this change will improve things.

I came within a hair of buying a very nice Creative Zen V+, but I just wanted to read a bit first. After looking through every single post in the long, long thread at the end of Graham Skee's review, I changed my mind.

Creative does not openly discuss "solved issues"—at least I didn't see what I was looking for when I went through their downloadable firmware—did I overlook statements by Creative Zen, explaining just what problems used to occur, and how and why they won't occur again? Even M$ admits its own weaknesses when it offers patches.

That, and the battery being an integral component of the unit, nudged me back to my old microcassette standby. I want a digital recorder, but I'll just keep looking.

Last edited by Grongle; 04-21-2007 at 02:04 AM.
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