I hope this isn't viewed as a dumb question -- or maybe I don't care -- but I am getting ready to add a D800 to my camera family and want to be sure the camera will operate properly with just a compact flash card installed if necessary, and nothing in the SD whatever it is, slot. I have never been caught by a full flash card with my D1X, D100, D200 or either of my D700s. I try to have plenty for a day's work or whatever job I am on. Thanks in advance.
I'll have to try it, but I'm pretty certain a second card is not required. I like using the SD card for backup images on paying jobs or RAW on the CF and JPEG on the SD. The reason the later is nice, is to easily upload just the JPEGs since they take way less time, but have the RAW to fall back on, if you need it for post processing reasons.
Scott Chapin Powder Springs, GA, USA Nikonians Team Member
Rob - Thank you! I was hoping that was the case. I am ordering a D800 over the weekend and plan to use it with 32GB 800x Lexar Flash Cards. I commonly shoot 14 bit RAW and a medium jpg on my D700 bodies. I'll probably continue to shoot 14 bit uncompressed RAW, but drop the jpg to basic -- on both camera body types.
BTW - I love your "Suicide Doors Open in the Gulch" photo in your gallery photos. It looks like Bonnie and Clyde's last stop! Aren't rusty things great?
I have shot with both Class 6 and Class 10 SD cards, and have never really noticed a difference in speed/saving. But would be interested in hearing how the 800x Lexar does. I myself have been considering adding that simply for video.
Thanks, I do not have much in this gallery, more of a test a few years ago but did check with a vintage hot rod blog to try and ID the year, 1938 Packard AFAICT. I should really put the bandwidth to better use, but, too easy to lift imagery from galleries, and many folks here load low res for that reason.
>I hope this isn't viewed as a dumb question -- or maybe I >don't care -- but I am getting ready to add a D800 to my >camera family and want to be sure the camera will operate >properly with just a compact flash card installed if >necessary, and nothing in the SD whatever it is, slot.
Works fine with just a SD or CF card. But with that said, depending on the criticality of your images, you might consider using both if you would like to have a complete redundant backup.
The SD cards are much lower cost than CF cards and it looks like you already have the CF card.
Have enjoyed the conversation about the CF and SD card use. Interesting how differently people shoot. I don't like CF cards as I cannot unload them into my iPad or use them in the SD card slot on my MacBook Pro. I would rather have two SD card slots. I use 32GB Extreme Pro SD cards that are rated at 95MB/s, Class 10 or U1. I use the same cards for video. Have never had one fail. I could not afford a CF card with the same performance.
I'm just the opposite, Carol. I hate SD cards. I find the locking slide is too fragile and too easy to lock when inserting into the SD camera slot. I had the slide break off on a Lexar card and my other Lexar card slides to easily. The broken Lexar broke off in the locked position and I can't get it unlocked, it's now useless. My SanDisk cards are better. I only buy SanDisk now.
I only use a CF card in my D800. I wish my newer DX bodies used CF.
Like Len, I am just the opposite but for different reasons. 1. With the exception of my D3000, all of my DSLR bodies have CF card slots so I have built up quite a collection of them along with Card Cases and fast Card Readers. 2. CF cards are faster than SD cards.
Just like everyone is telling you it doesn’t make any difference what you use. Even if you take the card out of the primary slot that you pick and leave it out, your camera will write to the other slot if you have a card in it automatically. Just set the CF slot as your primary slot. But I would get a cheap SD card for overflow just in case, even if you never use it.
Albeit, the cheap SD card could slow writes to the CF card down. The bus speed is limited to the slower of the two, if I understand correctly. In any event, it might not be an issue depending on how you shoot.
Scott Chapin Powder Springs, GA, USA Nikonians Team Member
>Albeit, the cheap SD card could slow writes to the CF card >down. The bus speed is limited to the slower of the two, if I >understand correctly.
That is the way I understand it and the primary reason I don't use SD cards in my D800E. The fastest CF cards are faster than the fastest SD cards, therefore the speed of the SD cards will be the limiting factor.
>In any event, it might not be an issue >depending on how you shoot.
Slightly off topic, but does anyone know if there is a good source of reliability tests on memory cards. I've generally stuck with SanDisk CF and SDs, but have 2 Delkin CF. I had bad lick in the past with some Kingstons and a few of brands. Transcend is another option.
Considering the wide variance in prices, I'm wondering how much is due to real quality and how much is branding. It would be nice if someone had actually run some tests.
How many actually manufacturers are there? I suspect not every brand actually makes their own.
Yes they are right and I should have said to match the speed of your SD card to your CF cards you are going to use if you get one. I guess that you are going to use some of your older CF cards from other cameras. The file size from the D800 are big and I would say to get at least 16 GB cards. The 16 GB card shows 200 pictures in camera and 32 GB shows 400, but I am sure you will get more depending on the scene you are taking. And that is if you are shooting in RAW format compressed. So that means the old 8 GB you only get 100 or so pictures. I bought a fast SD card and use it as my primary slot, it is easy to down load right into my laptop port when I am traveling. I hope this helps you out a little more.
Whether speed is important depends on how one shoots. I never use burst mode so have never had to wait for a transfer to the card. If one really needs burst mode they probably got the wrong camera since burst and the image quality a D800 is optimized for do not mix well. I use anything on sale, CF or SD, both most times but try to keep the size down not only for the cost but primarily because I got into the habit years ago to never put more of a project on a single point of failure than I can afford to lose.
Cards fail, we have all had them fail and it can be an extremely expensive situation to try to reproduce a session or a wedding. I learned the hard way years ago with magnetic tape and a accidentally damaged tape cost me $100k to redo the project. So I find that there are two view of thought on size of cards, those who have not yet lost a project and those who have. That is why a second or third camera is cheap insurance in paid gig.
Since I got back into photography in 2008, I have lost 3 cards in my D90 and D7000, over 120,000 frames. Not bad odds for a single frame but not great for a project. With the D800 in 1 year, 1 card of each type failed in 12,000 frames. One of those, the CF failure was important. Stan St Petersburg Russia
Sat 27-Apr-13 11:14 AM | edited Sat 27-Apr-13 11:14 AM by ajdooley
Stan -- You're a hard man on cards! Either that or the camera demons stay close to you. Or maybe -- I've been lucky! My only failure to date has been the 512kb flash card that I lost in Baghdad when it must have fallen out of my pocket. Unfortunately, it had my photos from a visit to the underground bunker living quarters deep under the Baath Party headquarters there. The visit remains vividly in my memory -- but I can't print or share any pictures! I hope your luck improves -- you deserve a zero percent card failure rate for the rest of your life!
Very odd. I have several 100MB CF cards I used with my first Digital Camera (5MP) and they still have pictures/videos on it:) Several old 1GB SD cards I still use for data transfer. Several I download low resolution files to and use with the digital photograph displays.
Seems I have better luck with SD/CF/USB drives than I do with my hard drives. Now, those I have plenty of discard
This is one of the reasons I have stayed with Nikonians. I asked only if I would have to fill both slots to have an operational camera. I got that answer for sure - I can operate just fine with a single CF card. But the expanded discussion has offered a wealth of thoughts on which cards to use, along with reasons, and absolutely none of the comments about anyone else being stupid that seem to proliferate in other web sites on photography all too often. I want to thank everyone who took part in this discussion and our moderators who keep the train on the tracks.
> . . . and absolutely none of the comments >about anyone else being stupid that seem to proliferate in >other web sites on photography all too often.
Boy! Alan, that was a really dumb question!
Now you've provided a whole bunch of people with a wealth of information and facts.
What a shame! We can no longer swim freely in a soup of rumor, innuendo, BS, and other product specifications, wandering aimlessly in this complicated world of cameras (which is now really a world of computers with attached sensors).
Thanks for the question --- I'm now going to have to examine the speed of my SD card to be sure it's not slowing things down.
>This is one of the reasons I have stayed with Nikonians. I >asked only if I would have to fill both slots to have an >operational camera. I got that answer for sure - I can >operate just fine with a single CF card. But the expanded >discussion has offered a wealth of thoughts on which cards to >use, along with reasons, and absolutely none of the comments >about anyone else being stupid that seem to proliferate in >other web sites on photography all too often. I want to thank >everyone who took part in this discussion and our moderators >who keep the train on the tracks.
That is the reason I am reading this site this early Sunday morning. Agreed!! Agreed!!