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Old 03-20-2007   #1
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Default Memory cards

I currently have a Kingston 1GB CF card for my D70s, but I am going on a few trips this spring and summer, and I am looking to pick up 3 or 4 2gb cards to travel with. I know they are pretty reasonable in prices, but I was wondering if anyone had a brand that they would just stay away from or on the other hand have nothing but luck with. Out of Kingstion, Sandisk Ultra II and III, Transcend, Lexar, and Ridata, are they all pretty comparable? Are there plus or minuses to any of these brands? I know it is kind of a personal choice, but I don't want to buy a piece of junk without knowing it. Thanks in advance.

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Old 03-20-2007   #2
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Default Re: Memory cards

I have been having good luck with Ridata cards. They are not the fastest ones out there, but have worked well for me.
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Old 03-20-2007   #3
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Default Re: Memory cards

You could start here: Rob Galbraith DPI: Nikon D70s This page will show you performance data for each card in your camera, plus he mentions if he really got a rotten card. For example, on the 30D he had one card die after a 2 inch drop to a table surface.

I got a Sandisk Extreme IV 2GB for my 30D and it writes at incredible speeds. I've only put about 250 shots on it so far, but no problems yet.
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Old 03-20-2007   #4
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Default Re: Memory cards

I've only ever used Sandisk Ultra II. I've had one issue with a 1 GB card, but I'm not certain its a card issue. Its been flagged for replacement nonetheless.
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Old 03-20-2007   #5
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Default Re: Memory cards

Memory chips are solid state devices with no moving parts. There is basically nothing that can go wrong, however sometimes they do have problems. I would bet that most of the problems have nothing to do with the card per se, but with the person using the card. If I disconnect my camera from my computer improperly (either while it is still writing data or not going through the proper disconnect routine) the next time I try and use the camera I get an Err 02 message (memory card problem). I then have to remove the card and reinstall it before it will work. The first few times I blamed the card but I eventually figured out the problem was me.

So if anyone tells you such and such brand sucks they are probably wrong. The memory card business is way too competitive for anyone to sell chips that have quality control problems.

The preformance data for the memory cards is not as relevant as you would imagine. Usually the bottleneck is in your camera and not your chip. In other words the data transfer rates are not that much different between the slowest and the fastest chips on the market unless you are using something like the new Canon Mark 111 with the dual processors.
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Old 03-20-2007   #6
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Default Re: Memory cards

Thanks everyone, and I will check out that link that you put in there Klaymon. Most of my trips are going to be out west in the Rockies, so speed is not completely neccessary, but nice to have when I do need it.
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Old 03-20-2007   #7
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Default Re: Memory cards

Quote:
Originally Posted by atomic View Post
Memory chips are solid state devices with no moving parts. There is basically nothing that can go wrong, however sometimes they do have problems. I would bet that most of the problems have nothing to do with the card per se, but with the person using the card. If I disconnect my camera from my computer improperly (either while it is still writing data or not going through the proper disconnect routine) the next time I try and use the camera I get an Err 02 message (memory card problem). I then have to remove the card and reinstall it before it will work. The first few times I blamed the card but I eventually figured out the problem was me.

So if anyone tells you such and such brand sucks they are probably wrong. The memory card business is way too competitive for anyone to sell chips that have quality control problems.

The preformance data for the memory cards is not as relevant as you would imagine. Usually the bottleneck is in your camera and not your chip. In other words the data transfer rates are not that much different between the slowest and the fastest chips on the market unless you are using something like the new Canon Mark 111 with the dual processors.

Not really that simple. CompactFlash consists of a small circuit board with Flash-memory chips and a dedicated controller chip, all encased in a rugged shell. Reliability is based on the components used to manufacture compact flash cards just as with anything else. Problems do exist. Direct from Canon's website.

Disappearance of images when using Lexar Compact Flash Cards
We have received inquiries about the problem of images disappearing when using specific digital SLR cameras. As a result of our investigation, we found that the following two problems may occur. Please be advised of the details and countermeasures.

1. Disappearance of images when using Lexar Compact Flash Cards
Affected Products (D-SLR): EOS-1Ds Mark II, EOS-1D Mark II, EOS 20D, EOS Digital Rebel XT / EOS 350D Digital / EOS Kiss Digital N
Affected Products (CF card):
Lexar Professional 80x-speed Compact Flash cards
Problem:
Captured images on some Lexar CompactFlash cards can be lost when used with the Canon cameras listed above. Working together, Lexar and Canon have investigated the cause and confirmed that the problem occurs in extremely rare instances when the products above are used together.
Countermeasure:
The firmware to correct this problem is now available on the Lexar website.

Lexar customers can contact Lexar Professional Support in US at (+1) 510-413-1233, or in UK at (+44) 1483-522-947 or visit Lexar on-line at Lexar - Customer Support.

We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience these issues have caused for you. We will make every effort in quality control to provide products that our customers can use with confidence. We appreciate your understanding in this matter.

Canon and Lexar are not the only ones to have had problems in this area.

My personal choice has always been Sandisk. They developed CF cards. I use the Ultra II's and Extreeme III cards. Not that my camera can write that fast now, but CF is the most rugged of the removable flash memory cards and will likely remain so in DSLR's My next body just may be able to use the extra write speed that is not being used now. Check the various forums and you will hear a varity of horror stories about using cheap memory. I would suggest you stick with one of the better known makers and stick to the 1 or 2 gig range. That way if you do experience a problem you do not have all your egg or in this case photos all in one basket. If you have a store such as Office Depot, Office Max, Staples or Circut City, watch their adds. You see Sandisk and other popular cards on sale all the time.
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Old 03-20-2007   #8
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Default Re: Memory cards

Quote:
Originally Posted by gryphonslair99 View Post
Not really that simple. CompactFlash consists of a small circuit board with Flash-memory chips and a dedicated controller chip, all encased in a rugged shell. Reliability is based on the components used to manufacture compact flash cards just as with anything else. Problems do exist. Direct from Canon's website.

Disappearance of images when using Lexar Compact Flash Cards
We have received inquiries about the problem of images disappearing when using specific digital SLR cameras. As a result of our investigation, we found that the following two problems may occur. Please be advised of the details and countermeasures.

1. Disappearance of images when using Lexar Compact Flash Cards
Affected Products (D-SLR): EOS-1Ds Mark II, EOS-1D Mark II, EOS 20D, EOS Digital Rebel XT / EOS 350D Digital / EOS Kiss Digital N
Affected Products (CF card):
Lexar Professional 80x-speed Compact Flash cards
Problem:
Captured images on some Lexar CompactFlash cards can be lost when used with the Canon cameras listed above. Working together, Lexar and Canon have investigated the cause and confirmed that the problem occurs in extremely rare instances when the products above are used together.
Countermeasure:
The firmware to correct this problem is now available on the Lexar website.

Lexar customers can contact Lexar Professional Support in US at (+1) 510-413-1233, or in UK at (+44) 1483-522-947 or visit Lexar on-line at Lexar - Customer Support.

We sincerely apologize for the inconvenience these issues have caused for you. We will make every effort in quality control to provide products that our customers can use with confidence. We appreciate your understanding in this matter.

Canon and Lexar are not the only ones to have had problems in this area.

My personal choice has always been Sandisk. They developed CF cards. I use the Ultra II's and Extreeme III cards. Not that my camera can write that fast now, but CF is the most rugged of the removable flash memory cards and will likely remain so in DSLR's My next body just may be able to use the extra write speed that is not being used now. Check the various forums and you will hear a varity of horror stories about using cheap memory. I would suggest you stick with one of the better known makers and stick to the 1 or 2 gig range. That way if you do experience a problem you do not have all your egg or in this case photos all in one basket. If you have a store such as Office Depot, Office Max, Staples or Circut City, watch their adds. You see Sandisk and other popular cards on sale all the time.
Well of course problems do exist. But a product without moving parts is inherintly more stable than those with moving parts.
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Old 03-20-2007   #9
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Default Re: Memory cards

Quote:
Originally Posted by atomic View Post
Memory chips are solid state devices with no moving parts. There is basically nothing that can go wrong, however sometimes they do have problems. I would bet that most of the problems have nothing to do with the card per se, but with the person using the card. If I disconnect my camera from my computer improperly (either while it is still writing data or not going through the proper disconnect routine) the next time I try and use the camera I get an Err 02 message (memory card problem). I then have to remove the card and reinstall it before it will work. The first few times I blamed the card but I eventually figured out the problem was me.

So if anyone tells you such and such brand sucks they are probably wrong. The memory card business is way too competitive for anyone to sell chips that have quality control problems.

The preformance data for the memory cards is not as relevant as you would imagine. Usually the bottleneck is in your camera and not your chip. In other words the data transfer rates are not that much different between the slowest and the fastest chips on the market unless you are using something like the new Canon Mark 111 with the dual processors.
This is an extreme overstatement.
Solid state circuitry does fail.
User error is not always the cause of failure.
Some brands certainly do deserve the "suck" label.
Even my camera (antique Canon 20D) is able to take advantage of higher rated cards. In fact, Sandisk Ultra II cards are faster now than they were when they first came out.
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Old 03-20-2007   #10
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Default Re: Memory cards

Quote:
Originally Posted by atomic View Post
The preformance data for the memory cards is not as relevant as you would imagine. Usually the bottleneck is in your camera and not your chip. In other words the data transfer rates are not that much different between the slowest and the fastest chips on the market unless you are using something like the new Canon Mark 111 with the dual processors.
My Sandisk Extreme IV will outpace my Lexar WA 40X cards by leaps and bounds. The data transfer rate is a difference of night and day. This can keep the camera buffer from filling up quickly and can be a great benefit if shooting sports or other subject matter where multiple shots in a row may be taken, especially if you shoot RAW. Performance data is very relevant.


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