With cheap deals on SD cards, Compact Flash and other flash memory card formats, Misco stocks a wide-range of cards for consumer electronics devices - including tablets, digital cameras & mobile phones. This includes the popular formats of microSD™, SD High Capacity (SDHC™) and SD Extended Capacity (SDXC™), together with CompactFlash and MMC Plus™ cards.
Below you'll find our Buyer's Guide for flash memory products from leading brands such as Transcend, Kingston, Toshiba and Sandisk.
When selecting a memory card for your chosen camera, phone or tablet, it's important to consider not only price, but speed, capacity and compatibility.
As a nonvolatile memory format, flash memory cards do not lose data when removed from a host device. And, being an inherently stable format, flash memory cards are capable of handling hundreds of thousands of write/read/erase cycles. In practice, depending upon the manufacturer, SD / SDHC / SDXC Cards typically ship with 5 year guarantees, while more expensive (higher-capacity) profession Compact Flash cards often carry Lifetime warranties.
The weakest part of their design - both for SD cards and Compact Flash - are the socket connectors. Over time, repeated insertion and removal may reduce a card's lifespan although, in practice, it would need to be performed thousands of times for wear and tear to occur.
As mentioned, for each of the formats listed, price is often not just dependent upon memory capacity but also speed. For SDHC/SDXC cards, each manufacturer will declare a guaranteed speed, measured in MB/s. For example, Class 2 cards have a transfer rate of 2MB/S, while Class 6 cards have a greater rate of 6MB/s.
Below is a guide to each card type, including today's fastest high-capacity SDXC cards.
For original specification SD cards, capacities range from 128MB to 2GB, with FAT16 being the default formatting for this card type. SD cards will work in all host devices supporting SD, SDHC or SDXC standards..
An SD memory card based on the later SDA 2.0 specification, with capacities ranging from 4GB to 32GB. The default partition format is FAT32, with SDHC NOT being backwardly compatible with the original SD format (i.e for devices capable of handling only 128MB - 2GB cards). To ensure compatibility, look for the SDHC logo on your host device or consult the manufacturer's instruction manual.
An SD card based on the more recent SDA 3.0 specification, with capacities ranging from 64GB to 2TB. Adopting Microsoft's exFAT file system, SDXC is NOT backwardly compatible with host devices that only take SD cards (128MB to 2GB) or those only accepting SDHC (4GB to 32GB). Host devices built after 2010 tend to be SDXC compatible, although if in doubt, check the manufacturer's instruction manual.
Note: on some SDHC and SDXC cards, an Ultra High Speed (UHS) bus is available, designated on the card with the Roman numerals 'I' or 'II' next to the SD card logo. Although the numerals indicate the bus mode, speed ratings are identified separately with a 1-rating guaranteeing a transfer rate of 10MB/s (suitable for full HD video) while a 3-rating (30MB/s) is suitable for 4K/2K video applications.
With the continue success of the SD format, equivalent versions for mobile phone use have also been developed. These are:
Now superseeded by MicroSD, the MiniSD card format typically supports up to 512MB of storage. Such cards are often supplied with a miniSD adapter providing compatibility with a standard SD memory card slot.
For micro cards equivalent to the SDHC standard, capacities up to 8GB are avalable (and up to 200GB for microSDXC UHS-I cards). Card adapters can often be purchased with each card to enable backwards compatibility with larger SD slots (with no difference in speed / capacity between a full-size SD card and a microSD placed in an SD adapter). For cameras with only an SD slot, it is still possible to use a microSD card, providing an adapter is used.
CF cards are larger in size than SD cards and are used in flag-ship / high-end cameras from manufacturers such as Nikon. Known for their physical durability, they are available in Type I and Type II formats (the only difference being the thickness of the card i.e. Type I being 3.3mm thick and Type II 5mm thick). Typically Compact Flash cards are available with capacities of up to 512 GB.
Are similar in dimension to SD cards. As such MMC cards can be used in many devices that can use Secure Digital (SD) cards and are typically available in capacities up to 128GB.
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