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Sony XDCAM EX Pro Handhelds
Sony PMW-300, PXW-X200, PXW-X180 (back to EX3 & EX1) recording to SxS flash memory.


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Old April 18th, 2009, 08:44 AM   #1
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Simple integrity + speed checker for SxS and SDHC

Hi there,

probably most of you have some professional tools and ways to check their cards prior using them for important shots.

For those who have not this may be helpful:

h2testw - a small tool (just an .exe for Win OS, no install needed) from a renowned German IT magazine, language is German and English.
H2testw 1.4 Deutsch, Download im heise Software-Verzeichnis
The direkt download link is here:
heise Software-Verzeichnis: Download H2testw

Its especially for testing integrity and write/read speed of USB devices with flash memory. Nothing "professional", but it does its job! It fills and reads the flash memory sequentially with 1GB-files. It won't overwrite anything, so one can test parts of a card or the complete size after formatting.

From my 12x 16GB SanDisk Ultra II SDHC cards one had a read error, and one only a writing speed of below 10MB/sec. Normal is 13.5 upto 14.5 writing, reading is almost always 18.7 MB/sec.

The both cards with errors were send back to reseller. I checked each card 3 times. This is not a prove, but a good guess/hint about the quality of the cards.

Somehow "funny" is, that all cards have almost exact capacity 15185 MB after formating with Win XP 15174 after formatting them in the EX1 (BPAV folder), but one has more, 15599 MB. This one has full 15MB/sec writing speed, but 16.8MB/s reading only. I do not know if I should keep it. ;)

All tests were done with the SDHC cards put into a normal USB 2.0 card reader. I did not check till now, but it should work for SDHC in MxR-adapter or even SxS-cards within EX1 connected via USB - if the EX1 allows in/out over its USB port.

Just thought this might me helpful for some...
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Old April 18th, 2009, 09:15 AM   #2
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This has already been discussed in these forums:

http://www.dvinfo.net/conf/sony-xdca...s-cards-8.html

Credit remains with Steven Thomas, Post #111

The common utility 'CrystalCPUID' used by all so that everyone is on the same page with reporting their results:

Crystal Dew World - Download Center

The DVinfo search engine is your friend - Cheers!

Last edited by Barry J. Anwender; April 18th, 2009 at 10:53 AM.
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Old April 18th, 2009, 10:08 AM   #3
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Actually not CrystalCPUID.
CrystalDiskMark
Crystal Dew World - Download Center
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Old April 18th, 2009, 10:09 AM   #4
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Thanks for the hints and links, Barry!

I do not want to bother you, but I would like to understand correctly. I've read those pages around #111 and downloaded the software. Probably the name changed meanwhile and the correct tool is called CrystalDiskMark22 today, am I right?

That software is expecially fine since it tests random reading/writing, what h2testw does not.

But as far as I understand it does this with a maximum of 1GB pieces with max. 9 tries somewhere on the flash memory. It does not test the integrity and speed of the complete memory.

My errors occured somewhere "between" the sequential writing (speed drop) and reading (read error) which I could have overlooked by some "tries" somewhere on the cards...

But I will check the tools and read more, maybe I am wrong.
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Old April 18th, 2009, 10:26 AM   #5
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As you can see, Steven's post refers specifically to CrystalCPUID. As you mention, this now appears to be a CPU utility. Prudence reveals that the website currently calls the disk benchmark utility CrystalDiskMark.

Your test results are indeed interesting. Cheers!
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Old April 19th, 2009, 05:12 AM   #6
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CrystalDiskMark results

What should I be looking for as minimum results with the tests.

Here is one Transcend 16Gb SDHC class 6 card result:

SEQ 16.86 Read 10.10 Write
512K 16.69 Read 2.087 Write
4K 4.308 Read .024 Write

Here is another:

SEQ 20.10 Read 14.17 Write
512K 19.94 Read 2.186 Write
4K 5.208 Read .022 Write


Update: With the slower card, I did not see any problems at 1080p for a 20 minute record. I then went to overcranking and managed to get to 55fps before choking the system. A 50fps shot recorded for 10 seconds no problem.
Both are labeled transcend. The faster set came from Amazon and the slower came from NewEgg. Might I have received knockoffs from Newegg? The NewEgg cards came with a 'transcend' USB adapter. The SDHC labels are identical but the cases of the Amazon SD cards have stickers and the NewEgg SD cases are blank.

Last edited by Ed Kukla; April 19th, 2009 at 09:20 AM.
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