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Old Sep 28, 2003, 10:44 AM   #1
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Default xD Picture Card

Am looking to buy the Olympus 5050 camera and notice it takes the xD card. What's the skinny on this card? Any advantage as far as end product picture quality over other cards used in this camera? Any place I can get a review of this card? Thank you.
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Old Sep 28, 2003, 11:54 AM   #2
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i also have a 5050z. i advise that if you like to keep your money and maybe advance to another type of Digital camera like a Dslr stick with CF. higher capacity lower price per MB. the major issue is that it is a propriatary form factor which both fuji and olympus devised. a 256 MB xD card is $80 at costco a 256MB CF card is ~$55. you can get an adapter that will allow a xD card to be used in a CF slot. advantages?

your images are just 0's and 1's in a memory cell. don't start equating these products to film.
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Old Sep 28, 2003, 12:00 PM   #3
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one advantage is the small size of the xD card.
I made a picture of one of my xD cards to show you the size:



Another advantage is, that xD cards will be able to have a real big capacity in the future. they're meant to store up to 8 GB in some years.

But they're still too expensive and I'd consider buying a cam with CF Card instead of xD.
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Old Sep 28, 2003, 12:12 PM   #4
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Wow! That is a lot of images. But how about the quality of the final image on photo paper. I was told that the xD equals medium format film. Is this correct?
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Old Sep 28, 2003, 12:22 PM   #5
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actually the type of storage has no effect on the image quality.
The quality on paper is just as good as the quality of the picture the camera can take.
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Old Sep 28, 2003, 1:44 PM   #6
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ah! the promises of the future. 16GB is actually what has beeen thrown about. currently CF is at 4GB. xD is at 512MB and costs 30-40% more.

smartmedia had promise too. remember?

memorysticks also. they've reached 1GB and are also 40-50% more then CF. the new Sony 828 8MP camera now sports a CF slot in addition to their own memorystick hole. maybe they've seen the light. you'll note that all higher end cameras have CF slots as a primary memory device holder.

lets face it the form factor for CF is more adaptable for use then any other format today. small enough to fit a lot of toys and large enough to be a host for more memory or devices. the next open format is SD and is well ahead of xD in useability too. xD is cute but limited in lots a ways.

they make CF adapters that fit either SD or xD memory to work in a CF based camera. it would be real tough to adapt the other way around though.

the Photographer, CMOS/CCD, lens, and the associated hardware and software related to the image creation are the only devices that relate to image quality.

AGAIN DIGITAL MEDIA SUCH AS MEMORY CARDS HAVE NO AFFECT ON IMAGE QUALITY. They are only a device for carrying data like a floppy or CDROM. IT IS NOT FILM in that respect.
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Old Sep 28, 2003, 6:35 PM   #7
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As correctly said above, the card format makes no difference on image quality at all. You're also unlikely to notice any difference between the various formats when it comes to read/write speeds because all modern cards are pretty fast in the camera and certainly faster than USB1.0 speeds when transferring to you PC.

I have an xD camera and really like the little cards because they are tiny, which makes carrying them easy, yet they feel very solid and are unlikely to ever get broken. They are still very expensive though which is dissapointing. Fuji and Oly should really allow other brands to sell them because I'm sure this factor is affecting camera sales now. They started to let 3rd party brands make card reader/writers earlier this year, so maybe card production will follow soon.

Luckily I bought a camera that was made in the SmartMedia -> xD transition period so mine supports both of these formats. That means I can carry on buying dirt cheap 128MB SM cards until xD's become more reasonable. I don't think any new cameras are being made with this kind of support though.

If I were you and the camera I really wanted only supported xD; I'd go for it anyway, getting a 128 or 256MB card to go with it and just live with the extra cost. Card prices are bound to drop sooner or later once Oly and Fuji realise it is hitting camera sales, and then you can buy more cards if you find you ned them. On the other hand, if there are a few cameras you're interested in maybe storage type needs to come into play. As mentioned CompactFlash offers the best value for money at the moment.
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Old Sep 28, 2003, 8:55 PM   #8
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Eddie: Many thanks for your comments. Now let me ask another question about media cards.
Does it make any difference in how a media works as far as speed in cycling is concerned whether you use a small card or a large card. I mean in MB size. In other words does a 32MB card cycle images in your camera faster than, say a 256 MB card? How about when using flash?
What causes one type of card to cycle faster than another. Is it the camera, batteries, the card manufaurer or what?
Thanks.
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Old Sep 28, 2003, 11:26 PM   #9
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I have an Oly c-750uz that came with an oly 16mb xD card. I have also purchased both a 256mb Oly xD card as well as a 512mb Fugi xD card. I have yet to notice any difference in speed at all between any of the three cards when taking pictures even when using the tiff format at full resolution which puts the pictures around 12mb. I wish they all were a little faster especially when shooting as tiff's, but I don't know if its a camera or media speed limitation. Although its still not to bad if you keep the in-camera processing options fairly low like not using noise reduction.
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Old Sep 29, 2003, 9:58 AM   #10
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There is a major speed difference between xD and CF.

On my C-5050z, my new Ridata 1Gb 40X writes a RAW file twice as fast as my 256Mb Fuji xD card. I also have a old Dane-Elec CF card, that is the same speed as xD.

CF is essentially cheaper and faster than xD. Don't let it rule your life, but be aware of this.

If you take RAW or TIF pictures this speed difference is critical, and it can make the difference between getting images and twidling your thumbs. It doesn't really make a difference if you are taking JPG images.
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