Yesterday we received two SanDisk 30MB/s 16GB SDHC cards from Amazon UK – £15.99 each, a couple of pounds more than regular Class 10 cards like the Transcends we normally use on all current Alpha and NEX models. You must have faster than 15MB/s for cameras such as the A55, A580 or NEX-5n not because of video issues, or even because you want to shoot raw bursts – you need it to be sure that shooting sweep panoramas or 3D panoramas will not a) fail b) corrupt your card and lock you out of shooting in the process.
This is what happened to us when using a SanDisk Ultra 15MB/s card which had been fine for all other work. Fortunately we had a spare card, the corrupted card was removed and its file contents recovered using SanDisk’s free program.
The SanDisk 30MB/s card labelled for ‘HD video’ is of course not limited to video and is ideal for any similar use which includes sweep pans, multishot noise reduction, HDR and 12fps bursts (etc). It is labelled slightly differently:
At £15.99 in the offer linked to here (click the image of card or this link) it’s a very good value fast reliable card from a premium maker. Admittedly, we are now seeing the Transcend brand falling to £12-13 for Class 10 which despite their info saying Class 6 or faster (etc) is the minimum you should aim for with Alpha and NEX current generation models. SEE COMMENTS – Amazon changed this offer a couple of days later to the less desirable 20MB/s but there was still a good price on 32GB 30MB/s.
We ordered two of the 16GBs and what actually arrived the next day was a pair of these:
These cards – 300X, 45MB/s, UHS-1 Class 10 – are not listed for sale under the Extreme branding but can be found as the last generation of Extreme Pro, priced at £43.50. Clearly SanDisk is repositioning the prices and labelling of the card range. So, we were apparently sent the latest version of something they’ve still got on sale for £43.50 but we paid £15.99.
March 24th update: can’t vouch for the vendor, the above were from Amazon themselves, but there’s one seller with the 45MB/s cards genuinely offered at under £20.
It gets more interesting as the real speed demon – the 95MB/s 16GB Extreme Pro which was selling for £80 or so recently – has dropped in price to be BELOW the price of the 45MB/s version which is now marked as having a ‘newer’ version. You can buy the 95MB/s card for only £38.10. We’ve ordered and received one of these, no errors or substitutions.
There is no guarantee that if you order the bargain HD Video 30MB/s card you will get the same switched product as we did with a March 18th order, delivered March 20th, UK. Even if you don’t it is a great price for a card which should guarantee the correct operation of NEX-7, Alpha 77, Alpha 65. The 95MB/s version is one of the fastest SD cards yet made, and will go beyond correct operation to ensure the fastest clearing of the camera’s buffer, fastest image playback or review, and the highest number of consecutive shots when shooting continuous sequences.
Disclaimer: Amazon prices can change on a daily basis, and Amazon USA or other regions may differ.