as I wrote before, the A port has a pointless plastic side lip that serves no useful purpose, except to prevent lots of wide readers fitting, thus making you have to search for a case style that is compatible instead of just having a flush socket that everything can plug into. Undoubtedly one of Archos' more stupid decisions... however you can find readers that fit. I use this: http://www.7dayshop.com/catalog/product ... _id=102820
for SD/SDHC, and a similar one for CF and XD. They are not the fastest on the market, but faster than the 404 host speed, so not a bottleneck on the move, and are very cheap.
Otherwise many "universal" readers are supplied with an A to miniB cable for connection (miniB is on the reader), and there is no problem with a standard usb A plug into the host socket. Or as I mentioned before a short usb extension cable enables any reader to fit.