Using the DJ Drive Tool, we and others have tested and compiled real-world media performance data. Having this data makes buying decisions for your media needs easier.
Media Type: SD Card
Capacity: 32.1 GB
Rated Speeds: Read 300 MB/sec, Write N/A, Video Rating: N/A
Test performed by Mark M of Chino, CA on a 'Lexar Professional Workflow SR2 SDHC / SDXC UHS-II' reader on Monday, June 22, 2020 8:17 pm UTC.
Tester note: USB 3.0 Reader LRWSR2TBNA
The Max, Min, and Average numbers represent the peak fastest, absolute slowest, and overall average performance across the entire drive when it was tested.
The percentage numbers indicate what percentage of the time the drive performed at the indicated level. So the 5% number means that 5% of the time, the drive performed slower than the number indicated, or conversely, that it performed faster 95% of the time.
We believe that the 5% numbers give the best marker as to the performance that you can expect from a drive.
Manufacturers of SD, Compact Flash, CFast, and other media don't often advertise the write speeds of their cards. But in the video production world, sustained write speed is the most important metric. We need to know that cards are going to be able to write data as fast as our cameras and other recorders generate it.
Short answer? Get a card as fast as your budget allows, as long as it is fast enough for your production workflow.
Longer answer? Get cards with write speeds in the above table higher than your recorder's or camera's required minimums. You can enter a minimum write speed in the search criteria to limit which cards are shown.
Data rates vary quite a bit, based on the codec, resolution, frame rate, and even image quality of the camera. For example, at DJP we use the Hyperdeck Studio Mini from Blackmagic Design for most of our recording needs, and shoot in formats from 1080p24 up through 2160p30, usually in ProRes. Cards which are capable of writing at rates of 100MB/sec usually work well for this. Our cameras needs are more modest, where 40 MB/sec is plenty for 2160p30 in XAVC-S.
For general use, when you have to copy data from multiple cards at a time, the StarTech 4-Slot SD Card Reader is our preferred device. We use it on every event when we need to copy footage from our master HyperDeck recorders and the isolated camera feeds with the minimum amount of hassle. With USB 3.2 Gen 2 connectivity for both Type A and C, this unit gives the highest standard UHS-I and UHS-II speeds we've seen, at up to 10 Gigabits per second, giving the speed to read four cards at 250 MB/second simultaneously.
For the highest perfomance for SD and microSD, we like this 2-in-1 reader from Lexar. For cards which offer performance boosts above normal UHS-I speeds (speeds greater than 104 MB/sec), this reader has proven to be the best we've tried. It not only accelerates reads from Lexar cards, it also speeds up reads and writes from cards from other manufacturers as well, often more than readers from the same manufacturer. We've had great luck with these readers, and they're quite inexpensive.
Use the DJ Drive Tool to perform disk testing and submit card performance data to this site.
We recommend using the 'Refresh' mode to perform both read and write testing.