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Mar
28
2013

Do you have the right SD card for your gadgets?

SD Card Speeds,SD Card Performance,Choosing Right SD Card

When I was searching the amazon.com for a microSD card for my new tablet I have come across 1000s of choices. Usually I use to go with most economical choice from a decent brand such as Kingston or SanDisk. However this time I have decided to spend some time to research and choose the right SD card to make the most of my new tablet.

Choosing a right storage size is not a tricky thing for most of us. If our gadget supports up to 32GB we would most likely get one with a storage capacity of 16 or 32GB. Well, what about performance?

The cards categorized by their speeds. For example the card shown below is of Class 4 which is capable of writing up to 4MB/s as a minimum standard.

SD Card Class Speed

There are multiple speed classes as per SD card association.

SD Speed Class Table

SD Association recommends that you pair your device’s speed with your SD card. That means if your device is capable of supporting Class 4 memory (i.e. max speed 4 MB/s) then choosing Class 4 SD card would be smart choice. You might ask why I can’t choose Class 10 SD card. If the device is not capable of transferring data beyond 4 MB/s it’s no way going to make use of Class 10 SD card’s capability. The SD card’s price will be inline with its class speed. So you end up paying more than what you need.

For most basic cameras the Class 4 or Class 6 would be good enough. Only for high end Cameras such as DSLR you might consider higher Classes. Similarly MP3 players would not usually require very high read/write speeds. However when it comes to tablets, there are wide varieties of apps and some of them may process huge amount of data depending on their designs. Also when bulk synchronization happens between your tablet and PC the read/write speed definitely matters. So it’s wise to choose high speed such as Class 10 for tablets and similar high power computing devices.

Note the speed classifications we are discussing so far are mostly concentrated on the write speed. What about read speed? The read speed would be higher than the right speed by default. For example, a Class 10 SD card if the minimum write speed is 10 MB/s then the read speed will be in the range of 13-17 MB depending on the brand.

SD Card Device Compatibility

So the next time when your camera takes too much time to store the pictures or if your camcorder struggles while recording HD videos make sure you check your SD card’s class with your gadget’s specification.

 

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