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Old May 6, 2005, 2:18 PM   #1
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Hey guys, I'm going to be getting my XT in the mail soon and need to purchase some CF cards.

I'm looking at the 1G and 2G CF cards from Sandisk and Lexar, but was wondering if I should cough up the extra bucks for the type II cards. Is the faster read/write speeds on these cards worth it? Would there be a noticeable lag when taking quick shots with a Type I card?

Anyone have any recommendations on which brand/type to buy?

thanks in advance!
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Old May 7, 2005, 3:02 PM   #2
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Chulmo wrote:
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Hey guys, I'm going to be getting my XT in the mail soon and need to purchase some CF cards.

I'm looking at the 1G and 2G CF cards from Sandisk and Lexar, but was wondering if I should cough up the extra bucks for the type II cards. Is the faster read/write speeds on these cards worth it? Would there be a noticeable lag when taking quick shots with a Type I card?
What you're going to find is that most digital SLRs cannot take advantage of the higher write speeds advertised by the latest Compact Flash cards. Many of the review sites out there will indicate the write performance from the camera. The bottleneck is often in the camera's writing ability.

For example, my Canon 10d cannot take full advantage of my 40x or Extreme IIIcards. However, make sure you consider the value of your time when you're transferring the 1 or 2 GB back to your PC at the end of the day (or on the road). These newer cards can save considerable time in the transfer. If you're travelling, this can make a big difference.

That being said, there'salways a point of diminishing returns when it comes to the performance vs cost curve. Unless you really strong value your transfer times, I'd opt for the second-to-last generation in transfer speeds. Ie. Extreme II, 40x, etc. rather than the forefront in performance. Storage capacity follows a similar tradeoff.

As for the Canon Rebel XT, it appears that it can deliver decent transfer rates:
  • Write speed (JPEG): 4.9MB/sec [/*]
  • Write speed (RAW): 6.1MB/sec[/*]
Therefore, it would be strongly recommended that you get a card that is at least as fast as this (so that you don't affect your capture speed). Any more than that and you're simply improving on your downloading times (and potentially investing for future cameras you may upgrade to someday).

The Sandisk Extreme (original) / Ultra II can deliver about 9MB/sec of write speed. The Sandisk Extreme III can deliver up to 20MB/sec. Lexar 40x is right at the cusp of what the Rebel XT supports at 6MB/sec. As the sequential read speed performance of these cards is generally a linear multiple of the write speed, your tradeoff in improved downloading times is similar.

Good luck & enjoy your wonderful newcamera!

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Old May 8, 2005, 3:08 AM   #3
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I have to agree with what Calvin said. I have Kingston Elite Pro 1gb cards and I can't say the camera is particularly fast at flushing a full buffer to them.

Where I really noticed a huge difference in speed was when transferring images to the PC. Initially I was using the supplied PC cable to move them across and it took hours to transfer. I recently bought a Card Reader and I now plug the CF cards straight into that and the time saving is enormous. The reader and card combo has easily halved the waiting time for transferring images across to the PC.

Now my camera is the 10d which is a USB1.1 device and I would be sure the Rebel XT is USB2, so it shouldn't be as slow as the 10d when transferring with a PC cable. All the same I would still recommend having a card reader as it will at the very least save the charge of your batteries a little longer.
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Old May 8, 2005, 5:44 AM   #4
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Chulmo wrote:
Quote:
Hey guys, I'm going to be getting my XT in the mail soon and need to purchase some CF cards.

I'm looking at the 1G and 2G CF cards from Sandisk and Lexar, but was wondering if I should cough up the extra bucks for the type II cards. Is the faster read/write speeds on these cards worth it? Would there be a noticeable lag when taking quick shots with a Type I card?

Anyone have any recommendations on which brand/type to buy?

thanks in advance!
Don't confuse fast with types I or II. You can have a slow CompactFlash Type II Card, or a fast CompactFlash Type I Card. The types have to do with the physical size of the card, not the speed.

Popular fast cards are the Sandisk Ultra II (or the even newer Sandisk Extreme III), and the Lexar 80x. These are type I cards.




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Old May 8, 2005, 5:54 AM   #5
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Also guys

When downloading you're NOT writing to flash!

Flash read speeds are several magnitude faster than their writes (just check the datasheets) - Yes, even for 'slow' cards...

-> The downloading speed is tied to the design of the cardreaders and not the write speed of flash!
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Old May 8, 2005, 2:04 PM   #6
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D'oh! We find ourselves duly corrected

:blah:

So to sum up; The bottleneck in writing to disk is often the camera and not the flash card.

To be quite honest though, I have had my 10d for nearly a year and in that time I have only hit the limit of the buffer twice or three times. And even then it was only on the rare occasions I got a chance to shoot birds in flight close-up. For the vast majority of situations you are not going to need to squeeze every last mb/sec of write speed out of your card. So the question is, do you really need to spend up to 50+ €/$/£ extra to get a minor increase in write performance?
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Old May 8, 2005, 8:36 PM   #7
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calvin wrote:
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Therefore, it would be strongly recommended that you get a card that is at least as fast as this (so that you don't affect your capture speed). Any more than that and you're simply improving on your downloading times (and potentially investing for future cameras you may upgrade to someday).
Whoa… Wait–a-hold-it. Why do you say that?

Since we're in the world of "Steve" I'll quote him directly from the Rebel XT review: Emphasis and underline added by me[/i]

Continuous capture revealed more of the XT's improved performance. Shooting Large/Fine images, the XT captured images at a rate of 3 frames per second (fps) for a depth of 12 to 28 shots (depending on the size of the compressed JPEG file), slowing to ~2 fps for subsequent shots; it took about 6 seconds to clear a buffer full of Large/Fine images. This performance was observed using a fast Lexar 4-gb 80x CF memory card.
A fast CF card brings out the best in the XT;
replacing the 80x card with an older 256-mb 12x yielded a depth of 10 to 15 shots at full capture rate, subsequent shots slowed to about 1 fps, and it took 15 seconds to clear the camera's buffer. But the XT's performance improvement is not limited to capture rate, depth and buffer clearing times. Its DIGIC II processor appears to be capable of multi-tasking, allowing you to access the camera's menu system WHILE it is writing to CF; the original Digital Rebel did not permit this, displaying "Busy" instead of the menu! The XT felt MUCH more responsive than the original Digital Rebel during side-by-side testing.

The whole review can be seen at:
http://www.steves-digicams.com/2005_reviews/rebelxt.html

Other reviewers have said the same thing as "Steve" has, other people who have posted in this forum. The Canon specs are very conservative and the XT and 20D with the DIGIC II processor is built with the new high speed cards in mind.

Not my humble opinion… Just the facts that I've read. When my XT comes in I'll let ya know how fast it is with an Sandisk Extreme III CF card.

dale
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Old May 10, 2005, 7:34 AM   #8
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Chulmo wrote:
Quote:
Hey guys, I'm going to be getting my XT in the mail soon and need to purchase some CF cards.

I'm looking at the 1G and 2G CF cards from Sandisk and Lexar, but was wondering if I should cough up the extra bucks for the type II cards. Is the faster read/write speeds on these cards worth it? Would there be a noticeable lag when taking quick shots with a Type I card?

Anyone have any recommendations on which brand/type to buy?

thanks in advance!
Just looked at Best Buys website and the Sandisk 1 GB Ultra is on sale for $121.49
while the and Extreme Card is $134.99. Not much of a gamble. I'd pop for the extra
$13.50 and know I have current technology.

dale
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Old May 10, 2005, 8:40 AM   #9
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thatsanicepicture2

Check out Costco:
-> Their 'regular' price are $89.99 on theses 1G Sandisk
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Old May 10, 2005, 9:04 AM   #10
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NHL wrote:
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thatsanicepicture2

Check out Costco:
-> Their 'regular' price are $89.99 on theses 1G Sandisk
REALLY!!! Is that the Ultra or Extreme???

dale






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