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CF/SD Performance Database Archive - Continued

October 28, 2002: The DCS 520 section of the database is no longer being updated, as we no longer have access to this camera.

If you shoot sports or other fast-moving action with this old workhorse, or its twin the Canon EOS D2000, our experience has been that a fast CompactFlash card can mean the difference between being able to quickly squeeze off another 1- 2 frames once the 12-13 frame buffer limit has been reached or possibly missing the photo altogether.

CompactFlash Write Speed - Kodak DCS 520 (Firmware Version 3.2.3)

The data in the table below was derived by timing how long it took the Kodak DCS 520 to write out 12 RAW .TIF photos to the card. Timing commenced when the camera's card status light illuminated, and stopped when the light went out. Each test cycle was performed 3 times (if the card's capacity allowed for that) to ensure accurate results.

Card-to-card speed variation within the same brand and model, photographing scenes of varying detail and at different ISO settings - these and other factors may slightly alter write speed performance. As a result, write speed differences of 5% or less from card to card in the table below should be considered insignificant. If one card's write speed is within 5% of another's, the two cards are likely to offer effectively the same performance in the real world. Similarly, it's unlikely that most photographers would notice a difference between the fastest card and one that was up to 10% slower.

The results are arranged in the table from fastest to slowest. The top 10% are marked in blue.

Brand and Model
(Card Identifier)1
Key Components Source2
Card
Type3
Date Added or Updated
Write Speed -
Raw .TIF4
Hitachi Microdrive 1GB
Hitachi
II
2002/3/26
1.334MB/sec
Lexar 512MB 24X
(Edge stamp, first two digits: 38)
Lexar
I
2002/3/26
1.333MB/sec
Microtech 512MB
(Internal: TOSHIBA THNCF512MAA)
Toshiba (SLC)5
I
2002/3/26
1.310MB/sec
Ritek/Ridata 512MB
unknown6
I
2002/3/26
1.299MB/sec
Delkin Devices 512MB
(Edge stamp: THNCF512MAA)
Toshiba (SLC)5
I
2002/3/26
1.293MB/sec
Delkin Devices 256MB
(Edge stamp: THNCF256MAA)
Toshiba (SLC)5
I
2002/3/26
1.284MB/sec
Ritek/Ridata 256MB
unknown6
I
2002/3/26
1.274MB/sec
Transcend 256MB
(25X label on packaging)
unknown6
I
2002/3/26
1.274MB/sec
Microtech 256MB
(Internal: TOSHIBA THNCF256MAA)
Toshiba (SLC)5
I
2002/3/26
1.269MB/sec
SimpleTech 1GB
(Internal: STI/Flash 5.1.0)
Hitachi
II
2002/3/26
1.240MB/sec
SimpleTech 512MB
(Internal: STI/Flash 5.1.0)
Hitachi
I
2002/3/26
1.229MB/sec
SimpleTech 256MB
(Internal: STI/Flash 5.1.0)
Hitachi
I
2002/3/26
1.221MB/sec
Lexar 256MB 12X
(Edge stamp, first two digits: 37)
Lexar
I
2002/3/26
1.212MB/sec
Lexar 160MB 10X
(Edge stamp, first two digits: 35)
Lexar
I
2002/3/26
1.066MB/sec
Sandisk Ultra 512MB
Sandisk
I
2002/3/26
1.004MB/sec
Think Perfect Pix 320MB
(Label: USA DEM LX-FLASH 320MB)
Lexar
I
2002/3/26
1007K/sec
Sandisk Ultra 256MB
Sandisk
I
2002/3/26
1005K/sec
Sandisk "standard" 512MB
Sandisk
I
2002/3/26
764K/sec
(1) To help determine whether the card you purchase is substantially similar to the one tested, the card's description includes an identifier - series number, internal name or other unique value - where possible and applicable. See How can I be sure the card I buy is the same as the one tested in this report? for information on interpreting the card identifier. With CompactFlash cards from companies that source components from other manufacturers, it's particularly important to compare the identifier noted here with the card you might select.
(2) Many companies sell CompactFlash media; relatively few actually design and manufacture the key internal components, including the controller and flash memory. This column lists the manufacturer of the controller.
(3) Type I CompactFlash cards are 3.3mm in thickness; Type II, 5.0mm.
(4) K/sec = Kilobytes per second (1 kilobyte = 1024 bytes); MB/sec = Megabytes per second (1 megabyte = 1024 kilobytes).
(5) Companies that source CompactFlash cards from Toshiba may opt for either the faster single level cell (SLC) or slower (but less expensive to manufacture) multi level cell (MLC) arhictecture. The Kingston cards tested were MLC; the company does, however, offer SLC-based CompactFlash cards on special order. Kingston's SLC-based cards have "-S" appended to the end of their part number, ie CF/512-S. Not all of Kingston's distributors will have the SLC cards listed among the products they can ship to dealers. For more information, contact Kingston..
(6) These cards contain controllers from an unknown manufacturer, likely of Taiwanese origin.
Next Page: Kodak DCS 760
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