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Minimum write speed CF cards for d800

col4bin

San Francisco, US
119 posts

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col4bin Silver Member Nikonian since 11th Jan 2012
Fri 23-Mar-12 01:08 PM | edited Fri 23-Mar-12 01:21 PM by col4bin

Getting my d800 today and with the 36mp sensor size, I am going to need to get new memory cards. What would you say is the minimum write speed to buy? The Lexar 1000x cards are really expensive. I want to get 2 32gb cards.

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LMMiller9

Potomac, US
1168 posts

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#1. "RE: Minimum write speed CF cards for d800" | In response to Reply # 0

LMMiller9 Silver Member Nikonian since 18th Dec 2005
Fri 23-Mar-12 12:40 PM | edited Fri 23-Mar-12 12:44 PM by LMMiller9

I got mine this morning. One question I had was whether or not I had purchased the right memory cards.

Good news, they both formatted and seem to work fine.

I have the Lexar Pro 1000x 64GB CF card. The D800 says that will hold 800 RAW photos and my experience with the D700 is that these tend be low numbers.

I also have the Lexar Pro 133x SDXC 128 GB card and that seems to work fine as well. It reads that it will hold 1.6k shots.

That is set on RAW lossless compressed. That might be useful info for some.

Now, out to do some shooting.

Larry Miller, Potomac, MD
DF/D810
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col4bin

San Francisco, US
119 posts

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#2. "RE: Minimum write speed CF cards for d800" | In response to Reply # 1

col4bin Silver Member Nikonian since 11th Jan 2012
Fri 23-Mar-12 12:53 PM | edited Fri 23-Mar-12 01:00 PM by col4bin

Thanks.

I was thinking of getting a Sandisk Extreme Pro SD 64 gb which has 90mb/s write speed.

The difference in price between the 1000x cards and 600x cards is quite substantial. I am getting a D4 too which I will want the 1000x for burst shooting.

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Ferguson

Cape Coral, US
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#3. "RE: Minimum write speed CF cards for d800" | In response to Reply # 0

Ferguson Silver Member Fellow Ribbon awarded for the generous sharing of his high level expertise in the spirit of Nikonians Nikonian since 19th Aug 2004
Mon 26-Mar-12 10:12 AM


I now confess to confusion. I did a lot of reading last night, and found that write (not read) speeds seem to be like smoke. Most manufacturers don't quote them. Some are hazy like "read and write speeds up to".

Then I ran across this article at B&H that refers to the newer Lexar cards. Notice the table in the bottom, which lists a 20MB/s write speed for this fastest of cards.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/indepth/photography/hands-reviews/new-lexar-memory-cards-can-keep-any-camera

So I ran off to the Lexar site and all I found there was

"(150MB/s) minimum guaranteed sustained read transfer speed"
followed by a footnote "write speeds lower".

So off to Sandisk, where finally (on the Extreme Pro):

100MB/sec* write speed

But that has a fascinating footnote:

* Up to 100MB/sec write speed, read speed lower

OK, never heard of flash memory that wrote faster than it reads. Typo? So I look up at the top of that page in a video they have, and there it says:

Minimum sustained write speed of 20 MB/Sec

Now that's a big difference. OK, I get it, burst vs. sustained, but any card can stick a bit of fast buffer on the front and get a few microseconds of high speed write. But notice that's the same 20MB/s in the Lexar writeup from B&H.

Here:

http://www.robgalbraith.com/bins/content_page.asp?cid=7-11673-12268

has some actual tests, and shows peaks in the 50MB/s range (and interestingly the Extreme and Extreme Pro not that different on all but the fastest camera in his table).

What I'm trying to do is compare SDXC write speeds with CF write speeds to decide what to put in the D800. Read speeds (to me) are largely irrelevant.

Is 10MB/S really the peak of write speeds for SDXC?

Is there any reliable source (other than the limited tests at Rob Galbraight's site) of WRITE performance?

My current thinking is to get:

- Large, 128G SD card for overflow, backups in more "one time only" events, and if I ever take movies

- One fastest, small ($) CF card if I am shooting action

- Several medium speed CF cards for normal use, as a compromise

But they sure don't make it easy to find out what real speeds are.



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