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Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by pdechavez, Apr 23, 2009.
I know Compact flash has higher speeds and high capacities...is that it?
its bigger and more expensive
Not always. I picked up three 4gb Extreme III CFs and three 4gb Extreme III SDs and they were the same price after rebate. $0. Same thing for (albeit slower and older) Lexar 8gb 133x CFs.
Note: This was a black friday '08 purchase, so it's not like an everyday price of free.
Ah, I remember that deal. I nabbed it as well. Although something to take note is that while they're both Extreme III-branded, I believe the CF cards are 300x and the SD cards are 133x.
As some may say...size does matter... for some the larger/smaller size of either card can be appealing.
Not sure how much there really is in it from a technical point of view, but SD seems to be more consumer orientated and CF more pro/prosumer orientated.
SD cards do carry with them little innovations btw. Some are wireless cards and others allow you to plug directly into the USB port without the need for a card reader.
CF has an onboard memory controller, SD uses a controller in the camera. This supposedly makes CF more fault tolerant than SD, but I have never had either one fail.
CF doesn't have higher capacities by default, just that higher capacities are currently being fabricated, there are SD cards with 32 GB available even now.
Why do you ask?
CF equipped cameras are also vulnerable to damage if the card isn't inserted carefully. The pins on the inside can bend quite easily if proper care isn't taken. My friend's rebel XT is decommissioned right now for this exact issue.
All memory cards have on-board controllers, except xD (and the old SmartMedia cards), so that's really not any different. CF has the highest speed transfers by far and that's a BIG difference. CF cards do NOT have a lock switch, and do not support on-board DRM, as many others (MMC,SD) do, which makes the licensing a little cheaper too. The reason CF cards are so much faster. and bigger physically, is that they use what is basically a mini-ATA interface (just like a hard drive). The downside is the size of the connector - but future CF cards will switch from Parallel-ATA to Serial-ATA, making for even faster transfers and much smaller connectors.
SD goes officially upto 2GB. But there are unofficial cards of at least 4GB (this needs FAT32, so there are many cameras that can't use them at all or format themselves).
SDHC goes upto 32GB.
CF goes upto 128GB.
SDXC goes upto 2TB.
Forgive my ignorance, but why would the difference between CF and SD cards matter? Unless you've got a camera that can use both types (ie. a 1D/1Ds Mk2/3 then I envy you.) you're limited to using which ever one works in your camera. Choosing a camera based on the type of memory card it uses? IMHO, that's letting the tail wag the dog.
Inquiring minds want to know??
It seems like a pointless question without some context.
Did you sit through that horrible presentation for the SDXC group at CES this past January? It sucked.