Feeds
90%

SanDisk V-Mate memory-card video recorder

Keep your favourite TV shows on a memory card

High performance access to file storage

Review Video content on mobile phones today is rich and diverse, but the cost is also rich and diverse - with an emphasis on rich. Are there any affordable alternatives to watching a variety of video on mobiles and other portable devices? SanDisk seems to think so...

SanDisk announced the V-Mate at Berlin's IFA 2006: a dinky device that can record video to various types of memory card for playback on mobile devices. Handy that, since SanDisk manufactures a wide array of memory cards. That's its angle, as simple as that.

SanDisk V-Mate

The unit has the appearance of a plain card reader, which it can be, if you want, connecting to a PC via a USB cable. The V-Mate can handle any SD, MMC and Memory Stick PRO cards – only CompactFlash is off the guest list. This isn't a huge loss, but there's still a range of handhelds that will be left incompatible.

The V-Mate takes a composite-video input, converts picture and sound to digital, and writes the resulting video file straight to the memory card without any PC intervention. It sounds straightforward and is pretty much just that. Two cables plugged into the rear, one for the input signal - VCR, DVD, Freeview, Sky or Telewest/NTL box - the other for TV output so you can view the recording or just for set-up and scheduling.

Here’s where we hit a minor problem. Not many video sources have a composite-video output. What’s needed here - and is sadly missing from the box - is a composite-video to SCART adaptor. Realistically this is the only way to get a signal to the unit as no Sky, Telewest or Freeview unit we could find has composite-video output.

After this hurdle is overcome, setting up recording is elementary. The V-Mate boots and requires time and date to be entered via remote control. This is used to name video files, which are just the time and date. No other alternatives are possible. A minor quirk is that every time the power is lost, date and time has to be re-entered, which can be tiresome. For this review we kept the unit on standby when not in use – as it functions as a pass-through for the video signal.

High performance access to file storage

Next page: Verdict

More from The Register

next story
Report: Apple seeking to raise iPhone 6 price by a HUNDRED BUCKS
'Well, that 5c experiment didn't go so well – let's try the other direction'
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Nvidia gamers hit trifecta with driver, optimizer, and mobile upgrades
Li'l Shield moves up to Android 4.4.2 KitKat, GameStream comes to notebooks
AMD unveils Godzilla's graphics card – 'the world's fastest, period'
The Radeon R9 295X2: Water-cooled, 5,632 stream processors, 11.5TFLOPS
FOUR DAYS: That's how long it took to crack Galaxy S5 fingerscanner
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Sony battery recall as VAIO goes out with a bang, not a whimper
The perils of having Panasonic as a partner
NORKS' own smartmobe pegged as Chinese landfill Android
Fake kit in the hermit kingdom? That's just Kim Jong-un-believable!
Gimme a high S5: Samsung Galaxy S5 puts substance over style
Biometrics and kid-friendly mode in back-to-basics blockbuster
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.