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Old October 23rd, 2009, 11:29 AM   #1
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64 GB Compact Flash Card Update

We have been testing the 32 GB and 64 GB PhotoFast 533X cards, available from Photofast Compact Flash* SDHC Class 10 CFAST CF Flash Cards So far all the tests have been very positive. Using our current firmware 1.0.112, both cards work at 160 Mbps. Using our revised write algorithm (to be released in the next firmware update), both cards work fine at 220 Mbps. The cards are reasonably priced: the 32GB card is $149, while the 64GB card sells for $299.

The PhotoFast cards should be fine for usage outside MAC Leopard. We will be testing a number of cards over the next several weeks to determine how well they hold up with MAC Leopard and Snow Leopard. You should always consider backing up your CF cards to another device, such as the Nexto drive, before inserting into a PC/MAC.

Next week we should receive a 64GB card from Pretec, which is also speced to operate at 220 Mbps level. They have also indicated at a 128GB card should be available in about one month.

Two 64GB cards will support 2.6 Hours @100Mbps or 5.3 hours @50 Mbps.

Best-
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 12:01 PM   #2
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128GB "days" away???

I just LOVE this runaway train.

Great news, Mike.
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 12:51 PM   #3
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Just tell us what the cards are and we'll go buy some and take our chances :-)
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 01:56 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aaron Newsome View Post
Just tell us what the cards are and we'll go buy some and take our chances :-)
Hi Aaron-
OK, they are the Photofast 32GB and 64 GB 533X cards ($149/$299) available from dvnation.com

Cheers-
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 02:08 PM   #5
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I just realized the link is posted above!
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 03:11 PM   #6
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Thanks for the update Mike.
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 05:00 PM   #7
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Why does this flash sell for less? Is it "floor sweep" from the production runs of the 600x parts?
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 05:26 PM   #8
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I guessed a few days ago what brand was being tested ("$299 CF 64GB" is easy in Google).

SanDisk is simply the top dog. So how long with these cards last? That's often one the big differences between brands.

Kinda like the new SxS "1" cards that aren't supposed to last as long.
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 07:13 PM   #9
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After a discussion with an ex-San Disk employee, I've learned that companies such as Pretec or Transcend are retail outlets for Toshiba and Samsung flash memories, which sell only to OEMs. All are involved with each other via cross-licensing of intellectual property. While he will not discount the notion of "binning" and reselling lower quality products, he tells me that these retail companies are simply very efficient in contracting for extra capacity at fabs or purchasing excess product that the manufacturers are unable to sell at a desired price. A major concern is the # of levels in their parts. 4 levels have more issues with data than 3 or 2 or even single level parts. He said that the cells in the x3 and x4 parts have only a couple hundred write cycles, and the chip firmware deals with spreading the data around. Thus, the parts will wear out and slow down with time, and this is worse with more levels. Worse yet, data integrity is an issue.

Also, what we are seeing in the CF card space with speed increases is the use of parallel storage with a controller writing to two or more flash chips in parallel. SanDisk Extreme IV was sold as 45 MB/second a short while ago. Today, SanDisk Extreme Pro does 90 MB/Second.

Last edited by Gints Klimanis; October 24th, 2009 at 01:41 PM.
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 07:24 PM   #10
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Dear Gints,

I recommend purchasing lifetime waranteed products.

We are still qualifying the cards. It is easy for us to put quite a bit a wear on the cards by recording to them all night long for weeks.

We could also develop special test routines to attempt to wear out a card.
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 07:48 PM   #11
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Dan, I buy top of the line Sandisk CF for my DSLR work. For my EX1, I've tried Transcend with one unexplained error. Are you recommending Pretec,Transcend, Lexar et al in addition to Sandisk?
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Old October 23rd, 2009, 09:16 PM   #12
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128 GB CF Card Media !

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Schell View Post
They have also indicated at a 128GB card should be available in about one month.

Best-
....A 128 GB CF card ? Yes ! With Four of those babies in my Flash XDR I could shoot full uncompressed with a half a Terrabyte of memmory ;-) Sweet !
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Old October 24th, 2009, 01:03 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gints Klimanis View Post
Dan, I buy top of the line Sandisk CF for my DSLR work. For my EX1, I've tried Transcend with one unexplained error. Are you recommending Pretec,Transcend, Lexar et al in addition to Sandisk?
Dear Gints,

We like Transcend; We just can't recommend them until the issue with Mac Leopard is fully resolved.

Pretec cards have not been qualified.

Lexar 300x UDMA cards have been qualified.

The cards that we have qualified and recommend are always listed in our manual, which is available for download from our website: www.convergent-design.com
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Old October 24th, 2009, 01:05 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Job View Post
....A 128 GB CF card ? Yes ! With Four of those babies in my Flash XDR I could shoot full uncompressed with a half a Terrabyte of memmory ;-) Sweet !
I would not get too excited until we are able to test the 128 GB card, and learn the price and performance.
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Old October 24th, 2009, 05:38 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gints Klimanis View Post
Dan, I buy top of the line Sandisk CF for my DSLR work.
And I bought Sandisk Extreme III 32Gb as recommended for my nano. The initial outlay is high but I have recorded dozens of times to these cards without failure thus far and I certainly do not expect any failures either. Total confidence in both products. Only the best for the best.

By the way, I really like reading your posts Gints.

Best wishes
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