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Thread: memory cards

  1. #1
    GEORDIE's Avatar
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    memory cards

    Having almost filled my first memory card (very new photographer) I now find there are different speeds! quality of cards. The guy in the camera shop gifted me a card generic to their chain which seemed O.K. to me, now you knowledgeable people fill me in on what I should replace it with.

    Cheers Colin.

  2. #2
    Administrator Manfred M's Avatar
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    Re: memory cards

    You might want to check your camera manual as to the types / ratings of cards for the model that you use. Obviously the card that you got with your camera seems to work, so you could use another one just like it.

    If you fill the card up, most photographers download the data onto their computer hard drives and delete the files on the card and reuse ithe card over and over again. A memory card is not like film that can only be used once, but rather can be reused many, many times.

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    Re: memory cards

    Hello there Colin,

    if you would like to tell us the make and type of your camera - e.g. Nikon D3200, Canon 50D, Pentax K-5 - and whether you have USB 2.0 or USB 3.0 available on your PC, we should be able to come up with some specific recommendations for you.

    Christopher

  4. #4
    GEORDIE's Avatar
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    Re: memory cards

    Thanks to Manfred and Christopher for your interest.
    Christopher I have a Canon 1000D and kit lenses, I know for sure I have USB 2.0 available don't know about USB 3.0 as my external hard drive runs on 2.0. I mostly do landscapes and slow shutter speed ocean and waterfall. I have a HP pavilion laptop.Hope that helps.

    Cheers Colin.

  5. #5
    Administrator Manfred M's Avatar
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    Re: memory cards

    If your laptop has a SD card reader built in , you can remove the memory carrd from the camera and downloaded directly to your hard drive. If not a USB 2 cable will work as well. Your camera predates USB 3.

    If you plug in your camera or your SD card, your computer should recognize them and let you download into a directory on your hard drive. Once you have confirmed that the data is on the computer, replace the memory card and with your menu, you can either erase all the images or reformat your memory card. Then you can shoot away again.

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    Re: memory cards

    Colin:

    Be sure you have installed the Canon software that came with your camera - not only is processing software included, but Canon EOS Utility is required to transfer your images to the computer,

    I prefer to format a card after I've downloaded the images to my computer. A formatted card tends to have fewer problems than an erased card.

    Glenn
    Last edited by Glenn NK; 5th October 2012 at 05:12 AM.

  7. #7
    GEORDIE's Avatar
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    Re: memory cards

    Thank you Glenn for your helpful input.
    Cheers Colin

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    Re: memory cards

    Quote Originally Posted by Glenn NK View Post
    Be sure you have installed the Canon software that came with your camera - not only is processing software included, but Canon EOS Utility is required to transfer your images to the computer
    Is this correct for a Canon DSLR, or is this a suggestion to simplify the image transfer process for a newbie?

    Usually, when plugged into a PC, any device that stores files becomes a new drive (e.g. drive D: ) in Windows Explorer. The files can then be transferred without needing any extra software, by dragging and dropping them (or by using Copy and Paste) into into any folder of choice on the PC's hard disk drive (drive C: ).

    Colin, whichever method is used to transfer the images to the PC, before erasing them from the memory card (or formatting the card), the image files should be backed up by copying them to the external hard drive.

    Philip

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    Re: memory cards

    Quote Originally Posted by Glenn NK View Post
    Be sure you have installed the Canon software that came with your camera - not only is processing software included, but Canon EOS Utility is required to transfer your images to the computer
    Nah - you can just browse to it directly (look for a DCIM folder) - or through the transfer picture wizard that may well pop up.

  10. #10
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    Re: memory cards

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    Nah - you can just browse to it directly (look for a DCIM folder) - or through the transfer picture wizard that may well pop up.
    Yes, if you have a Windows computer the transfer wizard should pop up regardless of whether you insert the card in a card reader in your computer or by connecting the camera to the computer through a cable.

    Brand specific software is sometimes helpful in viewing some of the photos on your computer (e.g. my Nikon View software enables me to view NEF directly and also enables me to view focus points used during shooting), but for downloading the wizard is actually very easy to use.

    As for your card: there are a number of brands out there. Sandisk and Lexar are well known, but there are more good brands. You can always look for reviews.
    Look for a speed that is optimal for your camera, a quick card is important when you write a lot of data (e.g. in burst shots) and also when reading to the computer. The differences can be very noticeable.

    After downloading I always reformat my card in camera, to ensure that any errors on there get overwritten and don't hamper me the next time I am shooting.

  11. #11
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    Re: memory cards

    Quote Originally Posted by Letrow View Post
    After downloading I always reformat my card in camera, to ensure that any errors on there get overwritten and don't hamper me the next time I am shooting.
    Colin (Geordie), I repeat - whichever method is used to transfer the images to the PC, before erasing them from the memory card (or formatting the card), the image files should be backed up by copying them to your external hard drive.

    Cheers.
    Philip

  12. #12
    GEORDIE's Avatar
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    Re: memory cards

    Thanks everyone for your help.
    I download from camera to pc by cable and backup to an external hard drive. My problem? was I wasn't aware the card can be reused after it was full by reformatting. The other thing was I found out was cards have various ratings so for a beginner what speed quality should I use if I buy a new card.

    Colin

  13. #13
    Administrator Manfred M's Avatar
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    Re: memory cards

    Colin the speed / quality rating have nothing to do with whether you are a beginner or not, rather it has to do with what your camera has been designed to use. Your current card obviously works, so getting one with the same specs will work. Your camera manual is the place to check as well. I believe it takes SD or SDHC cards, and higher speed ratings are usually not a problem, but the camera may not be able to handle higher capacity cards. For example, the highest capacity my old camera will take is a 32GB card, but my new camera can address up to 128 GB cards.

    If in doubt, check with your camera retailer.

  14. #14
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: memory cards

    Hi Colin,

    Reformatting, which should be done in camera, may be quicker, but personally I don't use it, I always "Delete" the images on my memory card (again; in camera) and I've never, touch wood, had any problems.

    I would say don't be too tempted by massive card capacities, for one thing they are more expensive and for another, in some cameras they can actually be 'slower', even though they have a faster speed rating than a smaller card. I have two Nikon's and one Canon camera, in one of the Nikon's (the bridge camera) writing a block of several pictures (shot in burst mode) to a 32GB Class 10 card takes twice as long as to an 8GB C2 card. I use the bigger cards in the other two cameras now.

    The speed rating probably isn't something you need to worry about too much though, just get C6 or C10 would be my advice.

    In the UK buying memory cards online is much cheaper than buying in a shop, but do buy from a reputable supplier only, and only buy from the supplier themselves, not a "shipped by" reseller for things like this - they are too easily faked (as are spare batteries).

  15. #15
    Mark von Kanel's Avatar
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    Re: memory cards

    Another point to remember about memory cards is that they store the information in little blocks, if you constantly only fill your card part way the blocks that are normally filled first become corrupted over time. The camera will then have to search for un corrupted blocks to fill at the front before going on to the lesser use blocks at the back of the card. This will slow the card down considerably over time.

    So i let may cards fill up before deleting the images, it can be a bit of a pain when downloading but some software packages remember images you have already downloaded and ignore them so its not any trouble to me.

    A little bit OCD i know but all information is worth looking at

  16. #16
    GEORDIE's Avatar
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    Re: memory cards

    Thanks everyone for taking time out to help.
    Colin

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