Memory cards sit inside your digital camera and store the images you shoot. In the early days of digital photography, SmartMedia cards were considered the state-of-the art memory cards. Today’s memory cards are smaller, yet they store more images and transfer them to your computer faster.
Some points to remember about memory cards:
- Although digital camera memory cards come in several flavors, your choices are limited to cards that are compatible with your particular camera.
- If your image files tend to be large, look for cameras that take memory cards with a capacity of at least 1 GB. Check the manufacturer’s website to get an idea of the number of images you can store on the memory card that comes with your camera.
- When selecting a camera, also consider the operating speed of its memory card. With a high-speed card in the right camera, you can shoot photos faster and download the images more quickly.
SmartMedia cards: the originalsSmartMedia is an ultra-compact flash memory format that Toshiba introduced in 1995. SmartMedia memory cards, which store up to 128 MB of data, used to be among the most popular memory cards for digital cameras, particularly Olympus and Fuji models. Although SmartMedia cards are being phased out, you can still find them.
MemorySuppliers.com and OEMPCWorld.com for SmartMedia memory cards with capacities of 32 MB, 64MB and 128 MB.
Secure digital memory cardsYou might consider secure digital cards the heir apparent to SmartMedia cards. Secure digital cards are smaller and are available in capacities ranging from 128 MB to 2 GB. Secure digital cards are similar to MultiMediaCards, which can be used in some cameras that call for secure digital cards.
secure digital cards from SanDisk and other top manufacturers.
xD-Picture memory cardsWith capacities of 16 MB to 1GB, xD-Picture cards are even smaller than secure digital cards. They're designed for Fujifilm and Olympus cameras.
CompactFlash memory cardsCompactFlash memory cards can store 128 MB to 8 GB of data. These cards are available in two versions: Type I and Type II. Most digital single lens reflex cameras accept both, while many of the smaller digital cameras that call for CompactFlash memory cards accept Type I only.
For Type II cards, visit Nextag.
Need memory sticks instead of memory cards?Memory sticks are used primarily in Sony digital cameras. Memory sticks capacity ranges from 128 MB to 1 GB.
Shop for memory sticks at TigerDirect and Newegg.
- Secure digital cards aren't just for digital cameras. They can serve as memory cards for some PDAs, phones and MP3 players.
- Don't remove your camera memory card until the camera's writing light goes out and you have turned off the camera. If you remove the card while the images are still being written to the card, it will destroy the images.
- If a memory card gets corrupted, you may be able to rescue the images on the card with hard disk repair software.