PC Card

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Related to Pc-card: PCMCIA, PCMCIA card

PC Card

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PC Card

(1) (PC card) An expansion card that adds peripheral capability to a PC. Early PCs came with several cards plugged in, but all those circuits are typically on the motherboard today. However, a graphics card is often added for increased gaming performance. See expansion card and PC.

(2) (PC Card) An earlier expansion interface for laptop computers developed by the Personal Computer Memory Card International Association (PCMCIA). Introduced in 1990 and also known as a "PCMCIA Card," a PC Card was a plug-in module that contained a peripheral such as a modem, network adapter, storage drive or cable TV decoder. The PC Card was superseded by CardBus and ExpressCard. See PCMCIA, ExpressCard, CableCARD, CompactFlash and PC Card adapter.
           ----Form Factor---   Data           Thick  Long  Wide    Rate            (millimeters)     (MB/sec)PC Card (16-bit)
    I     3.3  86 54       40
   II     5.0 86 54       40
  III    10.5  86  54       40

  CardBus (32-bit)
    I     3.3  86 54      132
   II     5.0 86 54      132
  III    10.5  86  54      132

  ExpressCard (Serial)
   34          5    75    34      342
   54          5    75    54      342



Adding Functionality
PC Cards added functionality in laptops just like plug-in boards expanded desktop computers. Because a "PC Card" could refer to both the PCMCIA PC Card or any card inside a PC, people would often say "P-C-M-C-I-A Card." (Top image courtesy of Personal Computer Memory Card International Association.)


Adding Functionality
PC Cards added functionality in laptops just like plug-in boards expanded desktop computers. Because a "PC Card" could refer to both the PCMCIA PC Card or any card inside a PC, people would often say "P-C-M-C-I-A Card." (Top image courtesy of Personal Computer Memory Card International Association.)







Very Common Years Ago
Most laptops in the 1990s and early 2000s had at least one Type II PC Card slot. The CardBus card (bottom) added 2GB of disk storage.


Very Common Years Ago
Most laptops in the 1990s and early 2000s had at least one Type II PC Card slot. The CardBus card (bottom) added 2GB of disk storage.







Desktop Readers
PC Card readers were available for desktop machines, either externally (top) or internally (bottom). (Image courtesy of Microtech International, Inc.)







CableCARDs are PC Cards
CableCARDs are Type II PC Cards that plug into TVs and DVRs to decode a cable subscriber's channels. (Image courtesy of Panasonic Consumer Electronics Company.)
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References in periodicals archive ?
"Development of the PCI bus and its large form factor has curtailed much expansion of PC-card products [TABULAR DATA OMITTED] into desktop systems."
Innovative Concepts, Inc.'s PCIDM is an inexpensive PC-Card alternative to the Improved Data Modem (IDM) Avionics device currently in use on all Army Aviation helicopters as well as several hundred NATO and Allied platforms internationally.
"You don't want to pull a portable computer off a table with its PC-card cable."
CMS Peripherals has unveilled Fire & Forget, a Type II PC-Card hard drive (HDD), designed to give PDA users an additional 2GB of storage capacity.
This credit card-sized HDD requires only a single PC-Card slot to operate.