Light makes photography. Embrace light. Admire it. Love it. But above all, know light. Know it for all you are worth, and you will know the key to photography.

— George Eastman.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

7 Things Photographers Should Know About Memory Cards

  • Do not listen to those who teach that brand does not matter, or that SanDisk and Lexar are the same. The truth is that there many differences between the two. SanDisk has had several exclusives with Nikon in which they worked together to create memory cards that are able to access the full processing power of Nikon D-SLRs.

  • I often hear professional photographers say that photographers only need to get a super-fast memory card for shooting video. While HD video produces large files, digital RAW files produce more data in a shorter time when photographers shoot a quick burst of multiple RAW files. Fast memory cards are even more important to still photographers who shoot bursts than HD video users.

  • Never “Erase All Images” on your card. Always “Format” the card. Some D-SLRs provide both an “Erase All Images” option and a “Format Card” option. Choose the “Format Card” option to prevent a variety of different errors that can arise by simply erasing all images. Formatting the card will re-organize the folder structure and prevent database errors.

  • While discussing how to erase all images, never erase any of the images on your card by using the computer. This will corrupt your database and can cause even more errors than “Erase All Images.” If you persist in erasing images by using the computer, you will corrupt your memory card and you will get errors.

  • You will rarely have errors with memory cards if you properly format your cards and never edit the contents of a card from the computer. However, you can break memory cards by not storing them properly or ripping them out of the card reader. This is especially true with SD cards, which have delicate pieces of plastic underneath which can bend or break off. Treat them gently.

  • Both Lexar and SanDisk professional-level cards come with free software that can help recover images on your memory card if you accidentally delete them. If you delete something accidentally, STOP SHOOTING, bring the card home, run the card through the program, and you will most likely get the image(s) back—even if you formatted the card. Lexar's Image Rescue and SanDisk’s RescuePRO get high marks for image recovery.

  • Lexar’s Image Rescue and SanDisk’s RescuePRO are licensed software. You get a license key for the software in the package your memory card comes in. Be sure to save or record the license key somewhere in case you ever need it. Without it, you will need to buy a license to use the software.

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