NZXT Aperture M Card Reader Review

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NZXT have introduced numerous cases, fans, heatsinks and fan controllers over the years which have earned them a lot attention from the PC enthusiast audience.  Today we will look at their new Aperture M card reader.

The Aperture M is a 5.25” mesh style reader that looks to set a new standard by supporting almost every media card in the market along with the perk of dual USB 3.0 ports and compatibility for the newest SDXC cards. The Aperture M blends almost flawlessly into any chassis with a mesh front panel.


Features:

  • Unique design that blends well with any chassis that has a front mesh panel
  • Media hub supports: CF, MD, SM, XD, SD, SDHC, SDXC, MMC, MS, M2, and MicroSD
  • Ante up your ports with dual USB 3.0

Specifications

Model Aperture M
Color Black/Black
Installation 5.25″ ODD
Connection USB 2.0/USB 3.0 Header
Support CF, MD, SM, XD, SDHC, SDXC, MMC, MS, M2, MICRO SD
LED White

The Aperture M ships in a sturdy cardboard package similar to the NZXT Sentry fan controllers.  The front of the package contains a view of the Aperture M media hub which also features 2 USB 3.0 ports.

The opposite side of the box details the specifications and a list of features, along with an image of the Aperture M installed in a system.

Inside the box is the Aperture M card reader, four small screws and a product manual stored in a zip lock bag.

The Aperture M is designed to fit seamlessly into a large number of cases that make use of a mesh front panel design. With all the media devices on the market today that store data, NZXT’s Aperture M Card Reader should meet many of the needs of today’s connected society.

Installing the Aperture M is a simple process.  It just slides into any available 5.25″ drive bay before secured with mounting screws.

There are 2 separate connections used to provide the power for this device.  The dual USB 3.0 ports need to attach to a USB 3.0 header that can be found on many motherboards.

If you don’t have a USB 3.0 header on your motherboard these ports are of no use. In this case we wish NZXT would include an adapter to step down to a USB 2.0 header so the ports could still be utilised.  The card reader gets power from a USB 2.0 header connection which is far more common and can be found on pretty much any motherboard on the market today.

Here are 2 images that show the Aperture M being placed into an open 5.25″ drive bay on a Thermaltake Overseer. We chose this particular chassis because it makes use of the mesh styled front panel and we can see how the card reader blends into the design.

As we can see from the images above, the Aperture M looks great when paired up with this case.  Even though the mesh is a slightly different design, we feel most people would be happy with the appearance.  We also included a picture with the Aperture M in the Phantom 410.  The Phantom 410 did not have a mesh face plate so we used one from the original Phantom for comparison purposes.

We tested with a 32MB SanDisk card and a SanDisk 2.0 GB card. Almost every card available will work with the NZXT Aperture M Card Reader.

If you are one of the many people with multiple media devices, then the NZXT Aperture M card reader will be an ideal ‘all in one’ solution.

The Aperture M supports all the major media cards including the newest SDXC cards.

To make the Aperture M even more versatile, NZXT have added 2 USB 3.0 ports that take power from a USB 3.0 header located on the motherboard.

The installation couldn’t be any easier; the Aperture M simply needs to be secured in any available 5.25″ drive bay. Once secured it gets the power it needs from USB headers on the motherboard.

Pros:

  • simple to install.
  • mesh design suits a large number of cases.
  • 2 x USB 3.0 ports.
  • supports CF, MD, SM, XD, SDHC, SDXC, MMC, MS, M2, MICRO SD media.

Cons:

  • No adapter to allow people without a USB 3.0 motherboard header to use the USB 3.0 ports.

Kitguru says: The NZXT Aperture M is priced at $32.99 USD, and should be available at retailers soon.  After looking at other options the Aperture M is slightly more expensive, but if you can make use of the 2 x  USB 3.0 ports it becomes more attractive.  The steel mesh design will blend with the mesh front panels on a large number of cases available today.  If you want a good looking and versatile card reader, the Aperture M from NZXT is definitely worth considering.

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NZXT Aperture M Card Reader Review, 5.0 out of 5 based on 1 rating
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