Panram Cat BAR USB Flash Drive Review


Product Requirements:
Windows ME/2000/XP (98SE with driver), Mac OS 9.0 or
higher, Linux 2.4 or higher

Everyone and their uncle seems to have a USB drive these days. You see them
dangling from key chains, lanyards or popped from pockets when the opportunity
presents itself. Most USB drives on the market tend to be boring looking widgets
typically 2-3 inches long by 1 inch wide. That said, once in awhile you’ll see
these devices available in whimsical designs such as

pocket knives
, rubber duckies,
or even sushi shaped

GeekStuff4U recently sent me a cat
shaped drive. The Cat Bar from
is a 256mb USB 2.0 flash drive that is available in Black, Gold, and
White cat colors. I was sent the Gold cat.

Just in case you’ve been living under a rock and don’t know what a USB drive
is, these handy little gizmos allow you to copy files to and from PCs and Macs
that have USB ports. Just insert them in the port and they magically appear as a
removable drive on your system, ready for drag and drop files operations. Wheee!

Package Contents

256mb Cat BAR
Mini CD with Win 98 SE driver and application software
USB extension cable

The Cat BAR is pretty darned cute. Guys probably won’t like it, but women and
kids will get a kick out of it. The drive is made out of pretty rugged plastic.
The Gadgeteer squeeze test resulted in no noticeable flexing or bending.

A small LED in the ‘body’ blinks amber when read/write activity occurs.

The cat’s head which doubles as the cap can be pulled off (ouch!) to reveal
the USB connector. The only flaw in the design of this drive is the fact that it
is super easy to misplace the cap. Who wants a headless cat? Not I! It would be
nice if the designers had included some method to attach the head/cap to the
body of the drive while the drive is in use.

The Cat BAR is simple to use. It’s Plug and Play for most current PCs that
you come in contact with. That said, the drive does come with a mini CD that
includes a driver for Win 98SE as well as a few extra utilities that get
installed all at once.

The included utilities allow you to use the Cat BAR as a PC Lock so that in
order to use the computer, you need the drive plugged in. It’s not all that
secure as you can log into Safe Mode to get around it. You might fool your kids
with it though… maybe.

There is also a disk partition utility that allows you to setup a protected
partition with a password and resize it as desired.

Last but not least, the CD contains a simple POP email application for
stealth emailing. The thing is, this program gets installed on your computer,
and not the Cat BAR… So I’m a little confused as to the usefulness of it.

The only other bit that gets installed to your PC is a little sound bite
file. Once installed, every time you insert the Cat BAR into that computer, it
meows. Useful? No. Cute? Oh yeah

The Cat BAR is a USB drive that will perform like most other USB drives on
the market, while injecting a little charm into the task at hand. However, it is
pricey when compared to other generic styled 256mb USB drives. I did a little
googling and found a like sized drives for $30 and under. That said, most
novelty drives that I found were around the same price as the Cat BAR. So, the
bottom line is that if you’re a cat lover with a USB drive fetish, here ya go!


Price: $65.17 from

Cute shape

It’s easy to misplace the cat head cap
Included applications on CD are a little lame


Product Information

  • Cute shape
  • Pricey
  • It's easy to misplace the cat head cap
  • Included applications on CD are a little lame
Posted in: Computer Gear, Gear, Laptops and Gear
{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Julie December 8, 2004, 3:34 am

    Post your comments here on the Panram Cat BAR USB Flash Drive review.

    Just click the POST REPLY button on this page.

  • DanZeman December 9, 2004, 8:46 pm

    I’m a “Dead cat” lover myself :p but I liked the extra features that the device has. The PC lock may be version one (Safe mode still works) but it is a technological step in the right direction for personal memory devices. Partition password protection is another nice feature. I can envision, someday everyone will have a PMD (Personal Memory Device) that contains all of our medical history, credit cards, portable device memory storage and car/house/computer keys. Password protection, encryption and privacy will be a necessary feature for this type of device and the Panram Cat BAR USB Flash Drive is a baby step toward this.

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