Memory Cards – Speeds, Sizes, etc.

Memory cards are now coming in absurdly large sizes. Compact flash cards are available up to 64gb capacity and SD cards come as large as 32gb. Unless you’re doing high-def video, a memory card of that size is total overkill. Instead of getting one large memory card, I suggest multiple smaller cards. Don’t bring one 8gb SD card with you on vacation – instead bring either 2 4gb card or 4 2gb cards. The more the merrier. Imagine taking 1000 images during your once-in-a-lifetime Italy vacation and losing or damaging your 8gb card? Doesn’t sound like a good time to me.

When purchasing a new memory card, keep your eyes open for the read/write speed of the memory card itself. Many of the cheaper memory cards are 15 or 20x read/write speed. A memory card of that speed will greatly increase the time between taking photos on a digital camera – a VERY common complaint amongst consumers. Make sure you get a card that’s at least 60x speed. Again, with this one, the more the merrier. Faster cards = more money, but it’s worth the price.

One thought on “Memory Cards – Speeds, Sizes, etc.

  • June 11, 2009 at 8:14 am

    Here are some other things to think about…
    BACKUP: Make copies of your files as soon as possible by either downloading them to your computer’s hard drive or burning them to CD/DVD.
    RE-FORMAT: Once you have safely backed up all your files, reformat your memory card.
    BATTERIES: If your batteries fail during card usage it may result in file corruption and could even permanently damage your card. Keep your rechargeable batteries well charged, and always have a fresh supply ready.
    WAIT: If you remove your card whilst it is still being accessed it will almost certainly result in file corruption and permanent damage to the card. Wait for your host device to finish reading or writing before ejecting the card.
    STATIC: Be extra careful when handling your card in dry, low humidity situations as a static shock could corrupt files.
    MAGNETS: Keep your card away from strong, magnetic fields. Walk through airport x-rays and scanners are usually quite safe, but be careful of the stronger x-ray equipment used to examine checked in baggage.
    TEMPERATURES: Avoid using your card in extremes of temperature. Do not leave your card in direct sunlight or in a damp or humid place.
    CACHE: If you are using a card reader on a Windows 2000 or XP computer, always flush the cache before removing your card. This can be done by right clicking on the green arrow in the system tray at the bottom right hand corner of your screen and ejecting your drive letter.
    EDITING: Always download your files before editing them on your computer. Do not edit the file whilst it is still on the Memory Card, it will shorten the life of your Card.
    PROBLEMS: If an issue with a Memory Card arises, stop using the card immediately. Do not reformat the card or attempt to save or delete more files.
    CAUTION: Be cautious when using any “Delete All” or “Format” options, especially when using SmartMedia or xD Picture cards. These card types have no controller chip, and selecting “Delete All” or “Format” is an irreversible action which no recovery service will be able to recover from.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *