Today, almost everybody owns a digital camera. During the last couple of years, digital camera technology has been developing rapidly, and this development is undoubtedly going to continue. Along with digital cameras another new product has entered the market: the memory card. This tiny card is actually analogous to an old fashioned roll of film as this is where your images are stored.
The different types of digital cameras use different types of memory cards. Consequently, memory cards vary with regards to size, shape, storage capacity, what kind of information you can store, and reliability.
Different Types of Memory Cards:
CompactFlash: One of the most widely used types of memory cards on the market. This type allows data to be stored very quickly.
A CompactFlash memory card.
Choose the Right Type of Card
The make is not what is most important when you are choosing the right memory card for your camera. There are, however, other criteria that are important. In the following you will find information on some of the most important criteria.
The capacity of a memory card decides how many images you can store on a card before it needs to be emptied. The capacity of a memory card is usually indicated in megabytes (MB) or gigabytes (GB). 1000 MB = 1 GB. The continual development in digital products has resulted in an increase in the storage capacity of memory cards. When a memory card is full it is emptied by storing the images on a computer and subsequently erasing them from the card, leaving it ready for use once again. This is one of the brilliant advantages of digital photography: there are no additional costs after you have purchased your equipment. Back in "the old days” a photographer would spend staggering sums on film and on developing film.
Once images have been transferred to your computer and the memory card has been erased it is ready for use. Remember to do a backup of your images once they have been stored on your computer.
Very few people realise that memory cards work at different write speeds. Some memory cards are able to "write" data at a very high speed, this means that your images will have been stored on the card split seconds after you have hit the shutter. Other card types will need several seconds to store just one single image. This type of memory card can cause problems if you want to take many photos in rapid succession. It is consequently advisable to choose a memory card that stores images at a suitable speed. If you do not know the write speed of a specific memory card you should consult your photo equipment salesman.
Memory cards have in general become quite efficient and reliable during the past couple of years. Some brands, however, still have a better reputation than others. Generally speaking, quality and consequently reliability corresponds to the price. If you are planning to shoot in extreme environments, for instance, in a very cold, very warm or very humid climate it is worth paying a little extra for a memory card produced by a well renowned maker, e.g. SanDisk or Lexar.