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Author Topic: flash cards  (Read 1491 times)

vazuw55

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flash cards
« on: June 15, 2012, 12:58:23 pm »

I am going to be traveling to Alaska, and shooting wildlife, in addition to landscapes.  I am fortunate to have a D800 with me. I am interested in recomendations for fast write, yet economical flash cards to shoot moving wildlife like flying Eagles, etc. Thanks.
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Robcat

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Re: flash cards
« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2012, 01:56:19 pm »

"Fast" and "cheap" do not really go together well in cards. Rob Galbraith has tested numerous camera/card combinations and found marked differences in performance. Look at this page for the Nikon D800 http://www.robgalbraith.com/bins/camera_wb_multi_page.asp?cid=6007-12451 and then look at prices on your favorite buying site and decide where you want to balance out. FWIW, I have a D800 and decided that the Sandisk Extreme 60 MB/s was the best balance for me.
Rob P
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lfeagan

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Re: flash cards
« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2012, 01:57:05 pm »

The SanDisk Extreme Pro at 90MB/sec will give you the stellar performance, at a cost. The D800 can take advantage of this card's performance. However, if you aren't going to be snapping away at high speed the SanDisk Extreme at 60MB/sec is quite acceptable and is approximately 1/2 the cost per GB. For example:

SanDisk Extreme Pro 16GB = $101 at Newegg
SanDisk Extreme 32GB = $95 at Newegg

I use the 32GB Extreme cards with my D800E. The write performance is a non-issue as my technique with this camera includes using the 3 second shutter delay from a tripod. Taking 1.0 seconds/photo to write vs 0.8 seconds/photo really doesn't make a difference to me. Compressed NEF 14-bit are around 40MB. Mine seem to range from 30 to 55 MiB in size.

I went and picked a recent folder of NEFs and it was 4075 MB with 103 files which yields an average of 39.6 MB/NEF. Therefore, a 32GB card will give you around 800 shots.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2012, 02:09:38 pm by lfeagan »
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Lance

Nikon: D700, D800E, PC-E 24mm f/3.5D ED, PC-E 45mm f/2.8D ED, PC-E 85mm f/2.8D, 50mm f/1.4G, 14-24 f/2.8G ED, 24-70 f/2.8G ED, 70-200 f/2.8G ED VR II, 400mm f/2.8G ED VR
Fuji: X-Pro 1, 14mm f/2.8, 18mm f/2.0, 35mm f/1.4

Moreno Polloni

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Re: flash cards
« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2012, 02:35:31 pm »

I've tried a few different cards on the D800, my fastest being a 60mb/s CF card, and just for fun I even tried the 16gb microSD card from my phone. No matter which card you choose, fast or slow, you'll be able to fire off at least 16 shots at max frame rate before the buffer slows down. It's only when you fill the buffer and continue to shoot that write speed becomes important. If you tend to shoot more than 16 shots per burst, or shoot multiple bursts with less than about 30 seconds between them, then get the fastest CF card you can.

For most of my shooting write speed isn't an issue as I rarely fill the buffer. I ended up getting some 32gb 45mb/s Sandisk SD cards, mostly because they were on sale for $34 per 32gb card. At that time a 32gb Extreme Pro was selling for $160+.

That being said, I've since found that write speed is an issue when using Live View as Live View doesn't utilize the buffer and the mirror doesn't return until the image is fully written to the card. The 60mb/s CF card takes about 3.25 seconds to cycle, the 45mb/s SD card takes 3.75 seconds, and a really old mini-sd card via adapter took 15 seconds. I don't have anything faster than 60mb/s. Perhaps someone with one of the fast (90mb/s +) CF cards would be so kind as to measure the Live View cycle time and post it here for comparison.

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vazuw55

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Re: flash cards
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2012, 04:05:29 pm »

Thanks for the help :)
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