class 2 vs class 4 vs class 6 ?

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by Etdashou, Mar 2, 2009.

  1. Etdashou

    Etdashou TPF Noob!

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    Hi all,

    I have a Canon Rebel XS.

    I was wondering if I should get a class 2 or class 4 or class 6 memory card. Is class 6 really that useful for my cam? or is class 4 is enough? Is Class 6 really good only for video cam where memory access is higher?

    I've been searching google on that, but I don't find anything about comparison for the class 2, 4 and 6...

    thank you for any help on that.
     
  2. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Class 4 is more than enough. Basically the memory card is rarely the limiting factor. Cameras just can't process images fast enough. Even a basic cheap card will be often limited by camera processing speeds. It's when you actually copy the files to the computer (via a card reader, not the camera) that the memory card speed starts making a huge difference.
     
  3. Etdashou

    Etdashou TPF Noob!

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    Thank you for the response on that.
     
  4. NateS

    NateS TPF Noob!

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    I bought a Kingston Class 6 8gb for my D90. Class 4 may be enough but when the class 6 is only 2-3 dollars more then why not go ahead and get it? B&H has the Kingston Class 6 8gb SDHC cards for about 20 bucks. (Although if I'd realized how few of shots the 8gb would hold on a D90 shooting raw I would have gotten 2 of them or a 16gb card.
     
  5. Etdashou

    Etdashou TPF Noob!

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    Yeah, sometime the price difference is 2-3 bucks, or sometimes it is 30-40$.

    Like at Futureshop, I had a HP 8gb class 4 for 25$, and a Lexar Professionnal class 6 8gb for 70$.

    I was wondering why should I choose one from the other...

    But now that you guys say that the limitation is the camera itself and not the memory (most of the time), where can I see the max transfer rate of a camera? So I could choose a memory card that is similar to this speed or higher. Is it something we can see in a camera?

    For the memory speed, Their is a nice website for this: Charts, benchmarks SDHC Memory Card Charts, Avergage Write Transfer Rates

    Is there something similar for Camera?
     
  6. NateS

    NateS TPF Noob!

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    Well, that's not a fair comparison because you are comparing two different brands. Compare a 8gb SDHC card from Panasonic with a SanDisk and you'll see a $100 difference. Compare 2 cards from the same company with a Class 4 vs 6 and the difference in price in pretty minimal.


    I find it hard to believe that the card doesn't limit it at all. I just got my D90 and shooting at 4fps (or is it 4.5??) I can hold the shutter down and only get 5 shots before it slows down from the 4-4.5fps. Now I find it hard to believe that the D90 can only fire off 5 shots at full speed before having to stop or "slow down". I'm guessing that if I had one of the really fast SanDisk cards that I'd get more than 5 shots doing this.
     
  7. Etdashou

    Etdashou TPF Noob!

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    yeah you'r right...

    However, is the processing speed of cameras is something we can see before buying the camera? Or it is something not displayed.
     
  8. NateS

    NateS TPF Noob!

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    I'm pretty sure that most reviews like DPReview show this data. I'll go check.

    Okay, I found it for the D90

    http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/nikond90/page14.asp

    It shows 11 shots in raw format at 4.5fps which is a lot more than the 5 I'm getting with my Class 6.....so apparently a class 6 is much slower than 133x or 30Mbps. I'd like to know what the actual bit rate of a Class 6 card if anybody knows. It was inexpensive and Kingston is a good brand so I'm not too worried about it, but if I start shooting sports then that 11 shot buffer would be helpful.

    Okay I just read that the Class 6 card has a maximum read/write rate of 20Mbps which is 1/3 slower than the Extreme III Sandisk cards. I guess that 1/3 is enough to allow an additional 6 frames at 4.5fps.
     
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2009
  9. itznfb

    itznfb TPF Noob!

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    extreme III are class 6 / 20Mb/sec.
    very few SD cards will reach more than 20Mb/sec. that's why higher end cameras use CF cards that go up to 35MB/sec or maybe higher.

    i've found class 4 cards to be pretty limiting as they only get me about 1 or 2 shots after the camera buffer before significantly slowing the shot rate.
     

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