Using memory cards with the Nokia N800

The N800 has 256 megabytes of on-board memory, but you can greatly expand this using memory cards. The N800 has two memory card slots, one at the front below the stand and one inside under the back cover, both of which can be used at once with any combination of cards.

If you're going to remove memory cards, try to do so with the N800 switched off. This protects the card from any possible damage. However, you can insert cards whenever you want.

The N800 can use many different types of memory card:

- SD (Secure Digital) up to 2 gigabytes

- SDHC (Secure Digital High Capacity) up to 8 gigabytes

- miniSD up to 2 gigabytes

- microSD (also known as TransFlash) up to 2 gigabytes

- MMC (MultiMedia Card) up to 2 gigabytes

- RS-MMC up to 2 gigabytes

However, only the SD, SDHC and MMC cards can be inserted straight into the N800. The miniSD, microSD and RS-MMC cards require special adapters that make them the same physical size as the larger cards. You can see all these adapters in action in the video above.

The maximum capacity of compatible SDHC cards is 8 gigabytes, the maximum capacity of the other types of compatible card is 2 gigabytes.

By using SDHC 8 gig cards in both card slots, you can have a maximum storage space of 16 gigabytes. This is enough for about 4000 to 8000 music tracks, or absolutely anything else you want to store such as photos, videos, text, applications, games etc.

How to get the memory card out of the N800's external card slot

A surprising number of people think that their memory card is stuck in the card slot under the N800's stand. The card isn't stuck though, the slot just isn't spring-loaded so the card doesn't pop out automatically.

To get the card out, open the slot's door and put your fingernail or thumbnail against the slot, perpendicular to the card. Press your nail down onto the card, and you should feel a ridge that makes it easier to pull the card out. Pull the card towards you with your nail, and it should come out very easily.

A more difficult problem may arise if you use miniSD or microSD cards with SD-sized adaptors in the external card slot. When using the method above to remove such cards, sometimes the actual card may come out of its adaptor and leave the adaptor stranded inside the slot. However, you can easily remove the adaptor using a pair of small tweezers, especially if you use them to get hold of the bottom of the adaptor.

Where to buy memory cards

The N800 can use cards of any brand. You do NOT have to use Nokia-brand cards. In fact the Internet Tablet School recommends the SanDisk brand instead as they're significantly cheaper but just as reliable.

The best place to buy a memory card is at a major electronics chain. Make sure the card is still in its packaging, and if it's a smaller card make sure it comes with an adapter that can make it full-size (watch the video above if you're unsure about this).

Try not to buy cards from online auctions, even if they seem to be a reliable brand. These cards may be fakes which work to begin with but go wrong fairly quickly.