The test involved duplicating a folder containing ten 10MB files first on the card itself. I also measured how long it took to copy the folder onto the card and then from the card back to the hard drive. For the card write test, the SanDisk took 22.31s, a rate of 4.48MBps. The read test was completed in almost half the time: 11.56s, yielding a rate of 8.65MBps. The on-card copy speed was 3.00MBps, from a 33.33s timing.
These numbers compare well to SanDisk's Ultra II, which is pitched as a high performance alternative to standard SD cards. The Ultra II's numbers: 3.73MBps for the on-card copy test, 6.97MBps for the copy-to-card run, and 8.47MBps for the copy-to-disk test.
The Peak II Xtreme yielded read and write speeds of 13.99MBps and 10.59MBps, respectively, and an on-card copy throughput of 5.86MBps.
SanDisk's SDHC card, then, offers comparable performance to the company's high-end SD card but with a much higher capacity - and the potential for more further down the line. But until Class 6 SDHCs become commonplace, the format isn't going to challenge good USB Flash drives.
The Peak drive retails in the UK for around £50. The SanDisk SDHC costs approximately £70. Both offer the same capacity, but the USB key is faster. Of course, a USB disk isn't helpful if you want the card for a handheld device or a camera, but then the SDHC card may not be either, if your device doesn't have an SDHC-compatible card slot.
SanDisk's SHDC card isn't the best computer-oriented removable storage offering - though tucked into the bundled MicroMate USB 2.0 card reader it makes for a neat USB Flash drive - and with limited gadget support for SDHC, it's not yet an alternative to regular SD cards. However, as more devices ship that are capable of handling SDHC cards, SanDisk's product will stand out for its speed and capacity. ®