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Old Jul 17, 2004, 9:25 AM   #1
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Hi,

just got a D70 (awesome!) and now am looking for some memory. I want a 2GB card. Should I go with the sandisk ultra or lexar 40x or a 2GB microdrive ? I will use this camera climbing, on bike trips and for other travel shots.
I am looking at the flash because I read that its faster than the microdrive when taking bursts of pictures. I dont like waiting for pictures to be written on the card and want the experience to be as close to "film feel" as possible.
Does anybody have positive/negative experience with any of these cards in this camera??

thanks!

charly
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Old Jul 18, 2004, 11:50 AM   #2
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The Microdrive is simply that - a little hard disk drive. And as such it is prone to mechanical failure, so is a solidstate flash card but the odds are that the Microdrive will fail before the flash card. If you can afford it then go with the Ultra II card. The new 80X Lexar cards still haven't shown up yet as far as I know.
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Old Jul 21, 2004, 5:06 PM   #3
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in addition to steves statement on the possible failure. hitachi, the real microdrive maker, warranties the drives for 1 year only. most manufacturers of high end CF cards back them up with lifetime warranties. so you must decide which is the better investment.
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Old Aug 9, 2004, 10:16 AM   #4
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I shoot a D70 with a Microdrive and have had great success. The 2GB is more than adequate for my needs. I got the same 2GB of storage for a lot less. I would say, take that extra cash and buy a lens, tripod, etc. You could buy a 4GB MD and get 2x the storage for a similar price and swap cards 1/2 as much. When climbing, less swapping may be a big benefit.

The camera also has moving parts. The warranty on your camera is only 1 year. Unless you purchased an extended warranty and then you are paying a premium for the added warranty. The D70 + Microdrive combo has worked out well for me and saved some cash.

Good luck and enjoy the cam.
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Old Aug 9, 2004, 10:39 AM   #5
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the only real difference is when the good CF card fails you send it back to some manufacturers and get a new one. after a year you get with a MD its "i'm sorry the warranty is up". you can always buy another with the money you saved though, this is true.

actually the warranty was 2 years on the camera. bought with visa.

as to recovery of images in the case of failure. the memory cells on cf cards have an extremely low failure rate. its the controller that is at issue usually and direct image recovery is possible and much less costly the with a MD and in most cases can be done by you. once you hear the click of death on a MD you either kiss the images goodbye or spend some real money to recover.

if you take more then reasonable care of a MD it will last. if you are hard on gear i don't advize them.

the current price for a sandisk Ultra II 1GB card is ~$170us a 2GB is ~$350us lifetime warranty.short term gain is reasonable but the MD has a higher failure rate then good solid state cards. and the warrantyis considerably shorter too. i like to think long term.


i guess we'll see what seagate has coming don the pike since the just upped their warranty to 5 yrs on their HD products and have a MD type drive coming soon too. see if they give it the same warranty treatment.
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Old Aug 9, 2004, 11:07 AM   #6
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the basic moving parts on a camera. are nothing new in design. they are proven mechanical assemblies that have essentially been around for over 40+ years of refinement. it is the electrical interfaces, AFand imaging systems behind them and around them that are newer and let us say the proven to be less robust at times.

i still own a olympus OM1 also a OM3purchased back in 1976 and 1980. that putsthem at approx 28 and 24 years old. these arestill my preferred tools for winter shooting. this is due to the many limitations of digital at this point in sub freezing conditions.
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Old Aug 13, 2004, 5:52 PM   #7
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The "click of death" is an old issue most likely the result of the read/write head sticking. When the head sticks the platter cannot spin and a click can be heard.

To fix, insert the MD into a card reader, wait for the click and tap lightly the side opposite the connector with the butt of a ball point pen. This will free the head.

This was an issue seen in the older drives (512MB, 1GB and earlier) as a result of user handing. Pinching the drive using your index finger and thumb would press the read/write head into the platter causing the head to stick.

Hitachi recognized this to be the number one issue with the first generation drives and fixed it. They rotated the entire armature of the drive, putting the read/write head out of the handing zone. The read/write assembly is now on the connector side of the drive away from the "pinching area". The head is ramped, parked and latched when not in use.

The Hitachi 2GB and 4GB drives are greatly improved over the previous drives. One of the changes you can see is the shock absorbing bumber that surrounds the drive. These are not the same drives of the past.

With the number 1 issue resolved, the likelyhood of failure is low. The drives are beefed up and the head assembly parked. I have dropped and survived!

If you lost data you could run an off-the-shelf software like ImageReacall or MediaRecover just as you would with flash. In extremes, DriveSavers specializes in HD and Microdrive recovery and they are certified.

I agree, the controller is of most concern with flash, but should the controller go or the firmware get corrupt, you would be hard pressed to get the data back. At least with a Microdrive the recovery process is uniform. A Microdrive is a Microdrive, a flash card can be Sandisk, lexar, etc all with different firmware & controllers. Without the exact same card (FW & Controller) it would be quite a challenge to recover from a good memory cell going around a bad controller. I would imagine that this would be quite costly if possible.


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Old Aug 13, 2004, 6:01 PM   #8
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well they have improved them somewhat but the 1 year warranty still stays vs a 3 yaer on their regular drives. why is that i ask? is it a lack of confidence?

when is a MD not an MD? when it is a chinese copy and dealers offer it at less then $200 but people think ts a MD but its really a magicstore. so be careful on what seems to be a deal.

make your own decision, but be willing to live with it.


"If you lost data you could run an off-the-shelf software like ImageReacall or MediaRecover just as you would with flash. In extremes, DriveSavers specializes in HD and Microdrive recovery and they are certified."

when drivesavers gets involved it will cost you.

you purchase a lexar pro card it fails you cannot recover your images through the normal methods. you call lexar tech. the card will be replaced for free. you will be asked if there are images on there because they if it can be done will save them and burn it on a CD and return them with a new card to you. the cost at most maybe a fedex charge if you're really hot for them.


I would agree that the controller would be of most concern with a flash card, but should the controller go or the firmware get corrupt, you would be hard pressed to get the data back. At least with a Microdrive the recovery process is uniform. A Microdrive is a Microdrive, a flash card can be Sandisk, lexar, Viking, Kingston, etc and all have different firmware & controllers. Without the exact same card (FW & Controller) it would be quite a challenge to recover from a good memory cell going around a bad controller. I would imagine that this would be quite costly if possible.

photoescue is a program for better then the ones mentioned it will recover allimage formatsfrom the card if it is still in the cells. it along with lexars software toobackdoors around the controller and DMAs and recovers the data. don't bother saying it doesn't work because it already has proven to do it.
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