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SD card reader not working on iMac

198959 Views 176 Replies Latest reply: Mar 23, 2014 7:40 PM by rholmes777 RSS
  • photosbypam Calculating status...
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    May 29, 2011 4:36 AM (in response to Kir4n)

    My old iMac will read my 45mb cards just fine.  The new MacBook Pro will not.  It will read the slower cards I have.


    I spent an hour and a half while on vacation last week with apple care and they could not figure it out.  They had me try many of the things that were suggested here.  I came back from Vacation a day early to try to resolve this. I spent over an hour at the Apple Store yesterday with my MacBook, my camera and two employees.  If you put the card into a regular MacBook or iMac it can read it.  Then after being able to read it on those, when you insert it in a MacBook Pro, it will recognize it.  However, once you take another picture with the card, put it back into the MacBook Pro, it will not be recognized again.


    Totally crazy.  In the end I returned the computer.  I had bought the one in stock with an anti-glare screen but it only had a 5400 speed HD.  Really wanted the 7200 speed anyway.  When they get this fixed, I'll order the one I really want.  Can't bring myself to buy a windows laptop!


    Until then, my iMac and I will be just fine.


    A question for others, do you find that when you use a USB card reader that it will read the 45mb cards fine on the new MBP or do you have the same problem with a card reader?  Does everything work fine with the slower cards?

  • kernowguy Calculating status...
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    Jun 6, 2011 1:01 PM (in response to Kir4n)

    Having gone through all the posts on this discussion, I had no joy.  Then I decided to take my iMac into the Apple store as it is under guarantee.  They discovered there was a fault in the SD card slot so have replaced it so I hope all sorted now.  Fingers crossed!

  • David_GiantsFan Calculating status...
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    Jun 10, 2011 8:11 PM (in response to Kir4n)

    Hello.  I had all the problems discussed here as well, including using Sleep to revive the SD Card reader.  Turns out it was a hardware problem (like kernowguy above).  I had a fault on the system board so they replaced that and the SD Card Reader and cable.  Working fine now.

    iMac, Mac OS X (10.6.7)
  • stoavio Calculating status...
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    Jun 19, 2011 7:08 PM (in response to Kir4n)

    I too am experiencing this issue with the MacBook Pro (13-inch, Early 2011). Resetting the SMC worked once, but I just purchased a new SanDisk Extreme Pro SDHC UHS-I card that my mac's card reader wasn't detecting. So, using my cheapie Dynex USB card reader from Best Buy I mounted it, opened up Disk Utility and formatted it using the MS-DOS (FAT32) format and viola, the card reader detects it each time.


    ....granted, I've only just discovered this as a "solution" and have no idea if it will continue working, but it seems to have solved the issue.


    Good luck all!

  • m2tno Calculating status...
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    Jun 21, 2011 3:21 AM (in response to Andi172)



    How did you figure that out. The toothpick trick worked like a charm. Just gave it a little wiggle and now the SD Cards work fine.


    Thank you!

  • Sparky73dx Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jun 27, 2011 6:24 AM (in response to Kir4n)



    This is a long term problem. PLEASE HELP US.

  • babowa Level 7 Level 7 (22,020 points)
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    Jun 27, 2011 8:10 AM (in response to Sparky73dx)

    Sparky73dx wrote:




    This is a long term problem. PLEASE HELP US.


    These forums are user to user only - have you contacted Apple? Several posters have had hardware replaced and the reader now works fine - rather than shouting (which is what typing in all caps is considered) at other users and volunteers, call Apple or make an appointment at your nearest Genius Bar.

  • genetherapy Calculating status...
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    Jun 29, 2011 10:02 AM (in response to Kir4n)

    I had the same problem, card reader stopped mounting cards. I gave a light tap to the back part of the reader and it started working.

  • patricia613 Calculating status...
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    Jul 23, 2011 3:18 PM (in response to Kir4n)

    OK so I buy the air so I can have a tiny laptop to play with. I told the guy at the store all I do is email and pictures and he sold me this thing. Whats up? I can only get pictures off my card when I first download them to an old PC then onto another thing my husband gave me THEN onto my air from that. WHATEVER! so NOT user friendly. I am reafy to return it!

  • Bernd Maedicke Level 1 Level 1 (30 points)
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    Jul 24, 2011 11:01 PM (in response to Kir4n)



    Is this problem with OS X 10.7 "Lion" too?

  • Wibo Van Rossum Level 1 Level 1 (15 points)
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    Jul 26, 2011 1:58 PM (in response to Bernd Maedicke)

    it sure is. good evening.

  • Julie Sinar Calculating status...
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    Jul 28, 2011 9:08 AM (in response to Kir4n)

    I've just started having this problem with my 18 month old 27" iMac.


    It won't read cards unless i have the card in when I boot up, or if it put it to sleep and wake it up.


    I've tried it with lots of cards, from different cameras, same problem, they work ok using a card reader.


    I am using OS 10.6.8

  • m2tno Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jul 28, 2011 9:15 AM (in response to Julie Sinar)

    Julie... this worked for me, and was originally posted by Andi172;



    I had the same problem with my iMac 21.5" (Mid 2010) which I own since one month.

    At the beginning the SD cards were mounted without problems but suddenly they have only been recognised after reboot.


    After wasting several hours with SMC reset and checking for software problems I remembered that most of the readers have a switch inside the slot which "tells" the OS that a card has been inserted. Seems that it failed to work due to dust or it simply got stuck.

    In my iMac the switch is located in the upmost back corner of the slot. Carefully moving it slightly several times with a toothpick helped. Now the cards are mounted immediately again.

    So this is definitely a hardware problem. I fear you have to call AppleCare to replace the reader if you won't try to fix it like me.

    But be warned: There is a high risk to bend the contacts which makes the reader completely unusable and you may loose the warranty.

    Don't try it if you have no experience with fixing electronic parts.




    Best regards,  Mike

  • genetherapy Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Jul 28, 2011 9:26 AM (in response to m2tno)

    before sticking anything into the slot what I did was give the edge of the computer at the slot a few light taps and that freed up the microswitch. I have had no problems since.

  • Julie Sinar Level 1 Level 1 (25 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 28, 2011 9:33 AM (in response to genetherapy)

    I've given it a few light taps and it still does not work.

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