Wednesday, April 4, 2012

MicroSD Card Module from EmbeddedMarket - Review

I recently acquired a MicroSD card module from,and heres a product review:
Image credit to

1.Product Page & Ordering:
As of the time of writing this post,the price listed on the website is INR 225,which is on the quite okay for a module like this,and its totally worth it,considering the quality and other details I'll elucidate here.

2.Packaging and Delivery:
The purchase was smooth,and I faced no hitches during payment or such.Within a few hours of placing my order,the product was shipped,and theres also a 'Real Time Order Ticker' that displays the status of various orders.It was shipped via DTDC India,and a tracking code was promptly provided.Shipping from Pune to Goa took a mere 2 days,and I recd. the product in a hard brown cardboard box.Safely within scrap paper, the module was in a small hard plastic box,in sealed antistatic.Really good stuff,I must say.The plastic box is a good touch.They score high on packaging and delivery.

3.The module:
Coming to the actual hardware,the PCB etc was quite good in terms of quality,silkscreen legibility etc.My module did have a solder short between C2 and R7,but it passed the QC because that short was parallel to a track on the board connecting those two.Anyway,an error like that was a little displeasing to see.
I opened a support case with them,and quickly clarified this matter.Only problem is that you receive no email notifications about a reply from their support staff.You need to manually go check.Anyway,Their support is quite prompt,and quite satisfactory,and I was pleasantly surprised about the same.

The module itself has a couple of good points,over any socket-on-pcb type crappy modules.
-It has support for 5V as well as 3.3V interfacing,which in my opinion is a resounding +1 for them.

-A very important power LED is also there on edge,right near the SD card slot.A power LED is always a must in my opinion,however small the module or board is.The placement too is well thought out,since it being on the edge and near the SD card slot, can be made visible through any enclosure etc.

-The 4 important SPI lines are placed consecutively.I mention this specially because on an ENC28J60 Ethernet module I bought from them an year ago,the pins aren't.But here that's not the case,and one may use a 4pin female to female cable to connect the module to the relevant control circuits.

-The silkscreen text is good and helpful too,indicating polarity etc where required.

-2 diagonally opposite PTH type mounting holes,which are not physically connected to any net on the board,or each other.Mounting holes,a +1.

-The board takes 5V DC input from 2 pins near the corner of the board.Heres one thing I'd like to point out..Infact this is the only minus point here according to me.The 2 pins for 5V power,and the remaining 8 pins do not maintain breadboard pitch between them.What I mean is,the distance between the 2 headers should be some multiple of 0.1",so that the entire edge can be inserted into a mini breadboard's edge,or a socket for the same on a PCB you make can be designed easily,but its not.So you have no option but to use wires to interface.Bah.A definite minus point.

-The silkscreen says DI and DO for the SPI datalines,so do note that this DI/DO  convention requires that DO(MOSI) on the master be connected to DI on the slave, and vice-versa.This is mentioned clearly in the module's manual(PDF) too.

-Oh and the module includes the 4 jumpers required for 5V interfacing selection.
-Also I feel they should keep the headers un-soldered,but supplied so that one may solder other wires/female headers if they want,or use the male ones supplied by default.

End Verdict: I have successfully used this without any hitches with a PSoC3 board of mine(post on that soon!),and I am happy(except for that pitch issue.) with this product,and would definitely recommend it.

They keep a useful range of modules,and its worth a browse.Check them out here.

The MicroSD Module Page is linked again,here.

1 comment:

  1. Ok. And any news about how you used the ENC28J60 Ethernet module? I got it from them but still haven't had any chance to use it.