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Author Topic: SanDisk Advice  (Read 1499 times)
Rob C
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« on: November 27, 2013, 01:18:31 PM »
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Hi,

I've been using a set of three SanDisk Ultra 11 cards with the D700 ever since I bought it. I originally used them with a D200 which, having smaller files, let the cards go a much longer way.

With the D700 I think I'm supposed to get around 77 shots per card.

Now, what I'd like advice on is what might be a better option for the D700. I don't fancy putting too many images onto one card, just in case it goes sour or I lose it, but as it is, each card now is only the equivalent of two 135 cassettes, which seems rather daft in this day and age. Normally, as I shoot very few images a time, it doesn't matter, but the thing is that I may get around to going further afield now and again, and a load the equivalent of six cassettes isn't too brilliant!

The info on the things is this:

SanDisk Ultra 11
CompactFlash
15MB/s
2GB

Any suggestions about what, with greater capacity, might suit the camera and be reliable?

Thanks -

Rob C

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AreBee
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« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2013, 05:23:40 PM »
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Rob,

I don't think you can go wrong to be honest.

From what little I know of you, you don't shoot 'machine gun' style. Therefore, card write speed is irrelevant. In any event, any modern card will be signficiantly faster than the cards you currently own. Card read speed may be of value to you, but I suspect that the reduction in time taken to download images from the card to your computer (perhaps a minute or so?) does not feature high on your list of priorities.

Bear in mind that the number of shots taken to fill up a card depends on the detail of the image content. If the D700 states 77 images when a card is empty then you will find that it will take something of the order of 115 images to fill it fully - the latter being approximately 1.5x the former, which in my experience is how it works out for my circumstances.

You can easily determine the value reported by the D700 for any size of card by proportion. That is, if you use a 4GB card instead of your 2GB card then the D700 will state 77*2 = 154 images, and the actual value will be more like 220 in the event that you fill the card up fully. I apologise if you already know this and it comes across as patronising.

In summary, in my opinion you can't go wrong with Sandisk, and if I were you I would purchase any Sandisk card at a price that you are happy to pay, which has an actual storage capacity not less than the number of images you desire.

Cheers,
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stever
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« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2013, 06:51:51 PM »
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I think the concern for losing information on "bad" cards as a justification of shooting more smaller capacity cards is outdated.  I haven't lost anything on a card in the last 5 years.  I've increased the card size with increased camera file sizes and as card prices come down so that I don't have to change cards in the field - shooting wildlife can fill a 32gb card in a day if there's lots of action (which you don't want to stop in the middle of to change cards).  Keeping track of a bunch of small capacity cards is a big nuisance as well.

I've been very happy with the Transcend cards which have a very good price/capacity/performance ration but I don't think there are problems today with any major brands - it's worthwhile to compare prices.
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Rob C
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« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2013, 02:59:59 AM »
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Thanks for your advice guys, I shall look for something in the SanDisk range (which so far seems good in that it hasn't let me down) that doesn't break the piggy bank!

One thing I noticed - I had run one of my cards down through its indicated 77 shots, and it just stopped recording anything, so on that occasion it was spot-on.

Incidentally, have no fear about sounding 'patronising' insofar as digital theory and my grip on it goes - I slipped off that cliff right at the first attempt to climb! In fact, I've had quite a lot of help offerd me via LuLa over time, and if anything, I find that an assumption of more understanding of something than one has is far more frustrating to the guy without it.

Muchas gracias!

Rob C
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PhotoEcosse
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« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2013, 06:26:17 AM »
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Just as a slightly off-topic aside - I use 32Gb Sandisk Extreme cards in my D800 and D800E and what is interesting is that, in both cameras, the exposure availability count (using lossless compressed NEFs averaging about 45Mb per file) is shown as 399 on a freshly formatted card. However, that count does not decrease by one for every exposure. (e.g. after 100 exposures, the counter might still be showing 325). In practice, I am getting about 600 exposures per card before it reaches a level at which I think I need to switch cards.

Like Stever (above) I have never had a card fail in over 5 years. Probably a silly thing to say - could be eating my words tomorrow!
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AreBee
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« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2013, 06:31:30 AM »
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Rob,

Quote
One thing I noticed - I had run one of my cards down through its indicated 77 shots, and it just stopped recording anything, so on that occasion it was spot-on.

Weird. For each Nikon camera I have owned I have been able to capture significantly more images than the number indicated on the camera for an empty card. I have not owned a D700, but I highly doubt that camera is an exception to other Nikon bodies in the way that it estimates the number of images required to fill a card.
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Colorado David
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« Reply #6 on: November 28, 2013, 08:08:15 AM »
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I used to use smaller cards under the notion that if I dropped a card on a scree slope to be lost forever, I didn't want the previous week's work to be lost.  So I have a bunch of smaller (2, 4, ect.) cards sitting in the office.  It's probably more risk to change cards than it is to use larger ones and now a small card means you change way more often,  I pretty much use 32 g cards all the time now.  I've never lost an image because of a bad card or a card error.
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Rob C
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« Reply #7 on: November 28, 2013, 10:09:30 AM »
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My fear wasn't really so much about the cards failing, it was about physically losing them. I've lost more ballpoint-pens than I can remember, which is probably why I lost the pens in the first place.

Actually, in the years since I got what the wholesaler told me was the first D200 on the island - my first and only other digi body - I very rarely got to the point where I reached anywhere near the 77 shots; I wonder if there's a connection similar to those NicCad batteries that used to have a 'memory' that made them have shorter and shorter lives between charges?

My 'counter' definitely does lower the number of remaining shots each time I click. Haven't used the D200 in a longish while, but I'm pretty sure it lowered the numbers too.

Thanks again for the advice, folks.

Rob C
« Last Edit: November 28, 2013, 10:13:11 AM by Rob C » Logged

Colorado David
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« Reply #8 on: November 28, 2013, 10:25:18 AM »
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Are you formatting the cards in the camera in which you intend to use them?  I believe the manufacturers claim there is something in excess of 100,000 format cycles in a card.  Formatting in the camera rather than deleting images should prevent cards from filling up with clutter I would think.  I was always more afraid of dropping a card in a place where it couldn't be recovered.  Use the Gepe Card Safe cases and follow a routine with your cards and you shouldn't lose them.
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Rob C
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« Reply #9 on: November 28, 2013, 01:14:27 PM »
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Are you formatting the cards in the camera in which you intend to use them?  I believe the manufacturers claim there is something in excess of 100,000 format cycles in a card.  Formatting in the camera rather than deleting images should prevent cards from filling up with clutter I would think.  I was always more afraid of dropping a card in a place where it couldn't be recovered.  Use the Gepe Card Safe cases and follow a routine with your cards and you shouldn't lose them.


I always delete the images in the camera, either one at a time, or simply delete via the formatting buttons. It depends how many images are on the card, and which feels the quicker route for that. I use a SanDisk reader to put the pix into the computer, but never delete via that option because I'm led to believe it can ruin the compatibility between card and camera...

Rob C
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BarbaraArmstrong
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« Reply #10 on: November 29, 2013, 06:02:12 PM »
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By using a larger capacity card -- 16 GB might be a size to consider -- you won't have to change cards in the field, allowing the card to stay in the camera until you get home, almost eliminating the chances of losing it.  You will find that the cost of memory cards has gone down dramatically from earlier days.  --Barbara
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barryfitzgerald
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« Reply #11 on: December 02, 2013, 05:53:32 AM »
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I have a few ultra II's they're about the same speed as the older Extreme III.
For normal use they're just fine speed wise, obviously sports people might want faster..but they're far from slow (use a horrible slow card and you know it!)

Not sure what your settings are but I would use compressed raw files, mostly 12bit..I've yet to see any real world big advantage with 14bit (least in my tests on a D7k)
Maybe an 8Gb card would do the job fine, I use mostly 2/4/8 myself I'm not so keen on very big capacity cards.
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langier
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« Reply #12 on: December 02, 2013, 10:15:30 AM »
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+1 for Barbara. Easier to loose a bunch of smaller cards being changed constantly than to have a large card in the camera that will last a couple of days before changing.

When I travel, I want fewer and larger cards. Harder for me to loose the card when it's in the camera and I don't worry in the heat of battle that I'm out of clicks.

Cards are pretty reliable now and it's been a long, long time since I've had issues. The only problem with this approach is if the camera gets shagged or you drop it off a cliff into the sea…

Faster cards aren't needed for camera speed. However, if you shoot a lot, it's the downloads that are killers. Faster cards and card readers make life on the download much faster.

So, in the last 3 or so years, I've gone to 8 and 16 gig cards for the D700, 16 gig cards for my D3s and 32 gig for the D800. I can go into the field and shoot a wedding all day without changing cards (both cameras are strapped to my body), and on the road, I can shoot 2-3 days without changing cards (those cameras seldom leave my side either). On longer trips, I simply back-up the cards daily to a pair of Hyperdrives and so far have 100% success over months and months of road trip in keeping all my cards and photos.
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Rob C
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« Reply #13 on: December 02, 2013, 11:02:41 AM »
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Thanks again, folks; looks like the 8 or 16 gigs are the way to do it. They will all make a much bigger image pool than my three 2 ones.

Rob C
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Lightsmith
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« Reply #14 on: December 04, 2013, 04:59:40 PM »
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With the D700 and shooting RAW you can expect to get roughly 100 shots/files per GB so a 4GB card will hold about 400 files. With the D700 an 8GB card with 800 files per card is as much as I would want on one card. I seldom shoot more than 800 images in a day and so that is my one card for the day. I like to start out the next day with a new card as I find it easier to deal with them later with one card per day which often works out to one card per location.

I have learned to test any new card before using it. I copy enough JPEG files to the card to fill it completely and then move them to a new folder on the computer and then open them with Bridge and have Bridge set to recreate the thumbnails and not use the ones on the card. If there is a bad segment on the card the image file will either not open at all or it will be visibly missing part of the frame.

Unfortunately cameras write files to the flash card but they do not take the time to verify that it can be read as this is a lot faster and fps is the name of the game. I stick with SanDisk and Lexar depending upon which is priced lower for a given level of write performance. I have an equal number of bad cards from both companies over the past 11 years.
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Colorado David
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« Reply #15 on: December 04, 2013, 10:18:05 PM »
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I was shooting in Denali during the moose rut one year. There was a woman frantically walking around through the photographers asking if anyone had a CF Card they would sell.  I never want to be in that position.  I think I'll lean towards the 32g and above cards and do my best to handle them carefully and back them up at night in the truck.
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