Best SD memory card for 1080p HD video? - ClubTread Community
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post #1 of (permalink) Old 08-29-2011, 11:38 PM Thread Starter
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Best SD memory card for 1080p HD video?

I just bought a new camera that can shoot 1080p HD video.

Will any CLASS 6 SD memory card work for 1080p HD video?

Or, will I have to go for a CLASS 10 for 1080p HD video in order for it to work?

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post #2 of (permalink) Old 08-29-2011, 11:40 PM
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I use a class 10 for my 1080p video. Panasonic makes a pretty decent professional level class 10 that's cheaper than the Sandisk or Lexars.
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post #3 of (permalink) Old 08-30-2011, 12:08 AM
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get class 10. class 6 is slow.
I recommend Panasonic as well.
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post #4 of (permalink) Old 08-30-2011, 06:08 AM
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Class 6 and class 10 may not mean much. Class 10 is a fairly new category and memory cards were much faster before the category was created. In fact, there are many that are faster than Class 10 and there is no category for them. The SD Association is unfortunately too slow creating these, but the idea is great. What you need to look for is the "x" rating or the actual MB/s number which is sometimes listed in the spec sheet.

Here's what the classes mean:

Class 6 means the card reads and writes at least 6 megabytes per second
Class 10 means the card reads and writes at least 10 megabytes per second

The "x" number gives you the actual speed. Each x = 150 KB/s. So if you have a card that says 150x that means it reads and writes at 22.5 megabytes per second (150 x 150KB/s = 22,500KB/s or 22.5MB/s), which means it could be both Class 6 and Class 10. It really should be in a category of Class 22, but there is no such category, so they either put it as Class 6 on the market, or if they manufactured it after the new class was created, they would have labelled it Class 10.

Most cards should indicate the "x" number or the actual MB/s. Unfortunately SanDisk started this trend where instead of using actual numbers they started naming their cards "ultra", "extreme" "extreme pro" "ultra extreme pro" "crazy ultra super extreme pro fast" to appeal to the dumb-ass consumer. They were successful, everyone thinks they're the best and they pay a **** of a lot more money to have their fancily named cards. Fortunately the SD Association started regulating the speeds with those class numbers, they're just a bit slow to catch up.
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post #5 of (permalink) Old 09-12-2011, 03:30 PM
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Good description Marco.

Anyway, I've used Class 6 cards without any problems for video. Mainly shooting hockey games I found it was plenty fast enough to write to the card between the whistle and next puck drop with time to spare. Still, when I found a 32 Gb Class 10 card on eBay for less than the (really good) sale price of a 16 Gb Class 6 at Staples, I bought it. Honestly, I didn't notice much difference in write speeds.
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post #6 of (permalink) Old 09-12-2011, 03:43 PM
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Speed varies among cards of a given class.

I have some Class 6 cards that work fine for recording 1080p HD video, and some other brand cards that don't work OK. Basically their buffer fills up at the start of recording sometimes and then it automatically stops and then you have to press record again. Interestingly it always works fine second time around. The problems are always in the first few moments. This is really annoying when shooting a live event though and can lead to missed crucial moments. And it's not just the cheap cards that are a problem here. I have Sandisk and Kingston Class 6 cards that mess up.

Class 10 will guarantee no problems. Hopefully.
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post #7 of (permalink) Old 09-13-2011, 02:52 PM
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Yes, YMMV.

FYI my Class 6 cards are Verbatim Premium. According to their website, minimum Write speed for this brand is (60x) 9MB/sec and Read speed is (133x) 20MB/sec. In a google search I found tests showing actual write speeds of 10.7 MB/sec for medium/large files. Therefore it's virtually class 10. I suppose that's the reason I've never had a problem with them.

And no, I didn't do any research before I bought. They were the best deal (around half price at Staples), I just lucked out on the speed.

Meanwhile, my Transcend class 10 card boasted of 16 MB/sec write and 20 MB read speed, but actual speeds have been tested to be 13.4 and 18.7.
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post #8 of (permalink) Old 09-13-2011, 03:55 PM
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How do you test your cards' speed? Is there an online tool that one can use?
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post #9 of (permalink) Old 09-13-2011, 08:40 PM
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There's also the issue of how fast your camera is able to write to the card. Cheaper cameras write slower and have smaller buffers. If your camera is only capable of writing to the card at a class 6 speed, then a class 10 won't help you.
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post #10 of (permalink) Old 09-13-2011, 08:46 PM
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The 1080p HD video sets the data rate in this case, as this would be constant across camera brands I would imagine, and I think it is around 6-7MB/s for MPEG, higher for AVCHD I think.
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