Checking SD Cards Before First Use.

sd-card-copy Checking SD Cards Before First Use.With the new FX6 making use of SD cards to record higher bit rate codecs the number of gigabytes of SD card media that many user will will be getting through is going to be pretty high. The more gigabytes of memory that you use, the more the chance of coming across a duff memory cell somewhere on your media.

Normally solid state media will avoid using any defective memory areas. As a card ages and is used more, more cells will become defective and the card will identify these and it should avoid them next time. This is all normal, until eventually the memory cell failure rate gets too high and the card becomes unusable – typically after hundreds or even thousands of cycles.

However – the card needs to discover where any less than perfect  memory cells are and there is a chance that some of the these duff cells could remain undiscovered in a card that’s never been completely filled before. I very much doubt that every SD card sold is tested to its full capacity, the vast volume of cards made and time involved makes this unlikely.

For this reason I recommend that you consider testing any new SD cards using software such as H2Testw for windows machines or SDSpeed for Mac’s. However be warned to fully test a large card can take a very, very long time.

As an alternative you could simply place the card in the camera and record on it until its full. Use the highest frame rate and largest codec the card will support to fill the card as quickly as possible. I would break the recording up into a few chunks. Once the recording has finished check for corruption by playing the clips back using Catalyst Browse or your chosen edit software.

This may seem like a lot of extra work, but I think it’s worth it for piece of mind before you use your new media on an important job.

2 thoughts on “Checking SD Cards Before First Use.”

  1. Also to add, avoid eBay at all cost for any form of memory and be careful with Amazon as theirs lots of fake cards floating about. They’re usually easy it’s spot as they’re dirt cheap but even the ones that are priced correctly can be fake.

    They come advertised as 256gb but only have as little as 8gb, as the firmware is hacked, the camera still thinks it’s a 256gb card.

  2. I prefer to dual record onto two memory cards that are not bought at the same time / from the same batch.

    But back in the EX3 days with its solo recording filling up those memory cards was my go to solution

    But totally agree about Ebay avoid like the plague and be extra careful on Amazon if it is too good to be true it probably is, don’t cheap out on media!

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