SD Cards Suitable for Digital Camera's and Video

8th Jan 2014

Just thought Iā€™d share a little information about SD cards to help you with choose one for use with your digital camera, when shooting stills or video.

SD stands for Secure Digital Cards. These cards are used in portable devices such as digital cameras, mobile phones and sat navs. There are three main types of cards which typically hold different amounts of data, the cards also come in different speeds for different uses. Both the types and speeds are discussed below.


Types of cards 

There are currently three types of cards, holding different amounts of data. Card logos, seen below, are printed on the cards to identify them:

 SD ā€“ These cards hold from hold between 1MB to 2GB of data. This makes them suitable for digital photography.

SD HC ā€“ SD HC cards hold between 4GB to 32GB of data, which are appropriate for both digital photography and video recording.

SD XC ā€“ Cards named SD XC are designed to hold between 32GB to 2TB of data and are ideal for video recording.


Card Speeds

An SD card speed refers to the quickness that data can be written to and from the card, this is important as different devices require quicker speeds for better results.  Cards come currently in six speeds: Class 2, Class 4, Class 6, Class 10, UHS Class 1, and UHS Class 3. Card speed is printed on the card with in a partial circle or U shape logo as shown below.

A HD video camera may require a card of not less than Class 6, suffering dropouts or corrupted video if a slower card is used.

A digital camera with a slow card may take a noticeable time after taking a photograph, while the camera writes the first picture, before being ready to shoot the next.  This may not be suitable for "Continuous Shooting"/ "Burst Mode" or fast action photography, such as sport shots needing fast shutter speeds.

The table below shows the card speeds, their symbols found on the card, and what they are ideally used for:

 Class 2 Speed 2 MB/s. Suitable for SD video recording

 Class 4 Speed 4 MB/s. Suitable for High-definition video (HD) recording including Full HD (from 720p to 1080p/1080i)

 Class 6 Speed 6 MB/s. Good for High-definition video (HD) recording including Full HD (from 720p to 1080p/1080i)

 Class 10 Speed 10 MB/s. Suitable Full HD (1080p) video recording and consecutive recording of HD stills (high-speed data bus)

 UHS Class 1 (U1) Speed 10 MB/s. Used for Real-time broadcasts and large HD video files (UHS bus)

 UHS Class 3 (U3) Speed 30 MB/s. Used for 4K video files (UHS bus).


Happy Shooting :)



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