Kingston Mini Fun Flash Drive Review

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Introduction

The ability to always have the files you need on hand and to always have a backup of important files are just a few reasons why USB flash drives have become a common accessory to computer users.  In this review, I will be showing you the ins and outs of the Kingston DataTraveler Mini Fun.  It does what every other flash drive does, plus a little extra.

Design

As the name indicates, the design is both mini and fun.  The Kingston Mini Fun is approximately half the size of my other USB drive (Transcend JetFlash).


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The fun part is highlighted by its Lego-like appearance.  It brings back memories of my childhood when I used to build Lego pirate fortresses with my brother.  Unfortunately, it feels very plasticky just like Legos, but the plastic feels sturdier than on my other USB drive.  The Kingston logo and the name of the flash drive are printed on the yellow plastic.


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You can actually remove the cap of the flash drive and attach it to the other half of the drive.  This is somewhat nice, making it more difficult to lose the cap.  Also, if you do not stick the cap onto the flash drive while it is plugged into your computer, the drive is difficult to remove.  The plastic is quite slippery, so without the extra plastic from the cap to grip onto, your fingers slip right off of the drive.

Drive Content and Performance

What makes the Kingston Mini Fun even more unique is what is inside the drive.  It comes with two installers for games from BigFish.com.

The first game is called Atlantis.  For those of you who play games on Yahoo.com, it is very similar to Zuma.  Basically, there are a string of colored balls that move along a track.  You shoot out colored balls to try to create a string with at least 3 balls of the same color, making them disappear.  If you let the string of balls reach the end of the track, you lose.


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The other game is Magic Vines.  It is synonymous to Rocket Mania on Yahoo.  In this game you rotate different pieces so that they create a straight line.  If you match up 3 to create a line, the tiles underneath those pieces disappear.  You must get rid of all the tiles to win.


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Unfortunately, when you have files preloaded onto your drive, that means less total drive space for you to use.  With the installers, you onl have 896 MB of free space.  Although you can just delete the installer files, the Kingston Mini Fun has even more unusable space than my JetFlash drive.  The Jetflash drive has 983 MB of free space.  The Kingston, on the other hand, has only 954 MB of viable memory. 

Performance wise, the Kingston Mini Fun surprisingly has the edge.  I had assumed that by miniaturizing the drive, they would have to cut back on performance.  However, on the crude benchmarks I have performed seem to indicate just the opposite.  When transferring files via a USB 1.0 port, they both had almost the same performance (12 min. 34 sec. for transferring a 640 MB file).  When transferring an 86.9 MB file via a USB 2.0 port, there was a discernable difference in performance.  The Mini Fun took 26 seconds while the JetFlash took 41 seconds.  According to this data, the Mini Fun is approximately 1.6 times faster than the JetFlash.

Conclusion

The Kingston DataTraveler Mini Fun flash drive comes in a unique package and holds fun goodies inside.  Although it has less free space than other drives, it makes up for it by having faster transfer speeds than other flash drives in the same price range.  One thing worth mentioning is that the Kingston drive has a 5-year warranty, while many other drives, such as my JetFlash drive, have a lifetime warranty.  If you don’t mind the playful design, for under $30, the Kingston DataTraveler is a good buy.

Pros:

  • Fun, unique design
  • Comes with free games
  • Relatively fast transfer speeds

Cons:

  • Without cap attached, flash drive is difficult to remove from port
  • Lower than average usable memory
  • Only 5-year warranty vs. lifetime


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