By Craig Lucas

Most people these days have a digital camera of some sort, whether it’s an entry level compact or a big fancy DSLR. But what happens to the photos after they have been taken?

You could leave them on your camera’s memory card.

Unfortunately with memory cards starting at 2GB these days, this can lead to huge quantities of photos to go through if you want to do anything with them, i.e. printing, uploading to facebook etc.

We regularly have customers looking to print 10 photos, waiting for ages while over 1000 pictures load up onto the system.

Maybe you have them all downloaded to your computer’s Hard Drive.

This makes it easy enough to upload to a social network, but these websites often reduce the file sizes in order to save space on their servers, and speed up the downloads. What if somebody wants a printed copy, or even a high resolution copy for their own computer?

Here’s where the USB drive comes in. It’s small and portable. You can copy just those 10 photos your Mum wants onto it, then load them onto her computer or print them, and then delete them off again ready for the next time you want to use it…


I know, you’re thinking “I could save the photos to a CD or DVD,” but a lot of people have trouble burning CD’s. The disk may show photos on your own computer, but if it is not finalised properly they will not show up on another computer. This is especially true if you are trying to transfer files from a newer system (Windows Vista/Windows 7) to an older system (Windows XP or earlier).  Also a recorded CD is a permanent option. That disk cannot be deleted or re-used whereas the USB Drive can be cleared and reused over and over again. In fact that is exactly its purpose.

A word of caution though, USB Drives and memory cards are not intended for long term file storage. For that you will need an external Hard Drive. These units have extra secure software and electronic gizmos that the more portable USB drives lack, but for temporary file transfers the USB Flash Drive is an essential!

Just for some further information, you will be able to store approximately 200 images per gigabyte on any digital device. This equates to the following:

  • 2GB = 400 photos
  • 4GB = 800 photos
  • 8GB = 1600 photos.
  • 16GB = 3200 photos

This assumes a file size of 5MB per photo, every photo is different, and if your camera outputs a smaller file, your device will hold a greater number of images.

Shop online at and see in a  Sam McCauley Chemists near you for all your photo needs & where staff are happy to answer any queries you have!



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