Introduction: Cheapest 6 in 1 Card Reader Ever

Picture of Cheapest 6 in 1 Card Reader Ever

A simple mod of the ECS 6 in 1 internal card reader makes it the cheapest external card reader i have ever found...

Usually this internal card reader only works with ECS motherboards but the hacked drivers (included later in the instructable) let it work with any motherboard...!

Step 1: Aquire Parts

Picture of Aquire Parts

The ECS Internal USB 6 in 1 card reader can be bought for next to nothing, alot of shops almost give them away as they are made to work with only ECS motherboards..

I picked mine up from PB Tech in Hamilton, New Zealand for only NZ$5.60 PBTech in NZ... a quick search on google will find many others from as low as US$0.99 on Ebay...

Also required is a male USB plug on some cable... the $2 shop provided this for me plus i get a spare female USB socket for free (the other end of a 1.5m USB extension cable)

Step 2: Open the Card Reader

Picture of Open the Card Reader

Remove the 2 small phillips head screws on the underside of the card reader.

The case then splits in two, carefully remove the board from the casing with the faceplate still attached. You can now disconnect the USB wires from the board as there is a nice little plug.

Now cut and strip the wires at about 40mm from the plug (card reader end).

Now take your USB extension cable and lop off the male plug (leave at least 200mm or so of cable but its up to you of course)... now strip those wires....

Step 3: Connect Wires

Picture of Connect Wires

Now get out your trusty soldering iron and connect up the wires... basically just match red to red, green to green, black to black and white to white....

You dont have to solder if you dont want want too... twisting wires is much cheaper and nastier..!!

Now wrap the connections up individually with insulation tape and then wrap those all together to make it all as compact as possible.

Now make a knot in the USB cable close to the insulation tape bundle.

Step 4: Reassemble

Picture of Reassemble

Now time to put it all back together... Mount the board back in the plastic case and snake the wire with the knot in the corner as shown.. this tends to jam the cable in which will allow for a robust exiting cable.

Now fit the base back on and reinstall the screws....

Step 5: Finished

Picture of Finished

Thats it... you're done... now plug it into your PC and install the hacked drivers which are provided below...

This reader performs like 4 separate drives in windows explorer... excellent and cheap..!!


The1PublicEnemy (author)2010-08-14

i took mine apart and guess what? it uses a standard mini usb cable haha

diyman (author)2007-12-07

i was trying to do this but th one i have is from an emachines computer, everything was going good until th wire connections part. this on has 2red, 2black, 2green, 2white wires. my usb cable had only 1of each color. so i don't know what to do help me out. thx diyman

divxnz (author)diyman2007-12-07

What was th original connection? the one you cut off? it has to to be USB in the first placed for this hack to work... sounds like it had 2 internal USB connections..

uncle_al_0 (author)divxnz2009-02-21

An internal USB header has provisions for 2 USB ports, usually 9 pins. 2 power, 4 data, 2 negative, and 1 ground. For diyman now, does the card reader you have also have a USB port that you can plug into on the front? If yes then that's why it has the 8 wires, just connect the each pair of wires from the reader to the corresponding color on the USB cable, just dont use the usb port and card reader at the same time as it may cause some problems.

i have one just like diyman and yes it has usb on the front. came out of emachines

any thoughts guys?

Are you wanting to do this and don't know how, or what are you asking?

sorta there is two of every color so just solder them all?

Yes, basically. You solder the 2 wires of each color from the card reader to the same colors on the usb cable your using, that way you don't have to figure out which wire is for either the usb port on the front or for the card reader. Just don't use the card reader and the usb port on the front at the same time or there may be some problems.

k thanx unlce al

i am me (author)2007-09-10

omg 1 made a long comment then and it messed up... any way, i put about getting one and i got 3 differant ones instead and i hacked it to be a 16 in 1 card reader and used that software to make it work.

junits15 (author)i am me2009-04-27

cool where did you get the software?

davidprosser (author)i am me2008-10-20

hacked a 6-in-1 into a 16-in-1???

kyleg001 (author)2009-04-03

Nice Instructable,

Mine could be cheaper if you have a broken PS3 around or know someone who does, and doesn't require drivers on xp/vista

these readers can be purchase off of ebay for <$10 with free shipping as well

This is the best Instructable I have ever seen!

By the way, just search for an internal card reader on Ebay and you can pick up a 7 in 1 card reader for under ten bucks!

diyman (author)2007-12-07

awesome man. i'm gonna do this ASAP. but 1 ? though.
will the medea card reader inside of the emachines work.
mine looks something like this
Emachines Media Card Reader

SacTownSue (author)2007-06-21

Clever! I was just looking at the USB drive encased in Legos. Put the two together.

spiffyrodent (author)2007-03-30
I built one and it works great on my ubuntu pc.
tmadore (author)2007-02-24

Cool this media card reader came with my computer but I could never figure out what brand it was or how to get it to work. thanks

divxnz (author)tmadore2007-02-24

Shot! dogg...

Aeshir (author)2007-01-20


cazmundi (author)2006-11-10

nice job i was thinking about doing this too

divxnz (author)cazmundi2006-11-10

Thanks... :)

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