Why do people format devices

SD card: never delete data from the camera!

Each of us has an SD card in our camera without really worrying about it. However, there are a few things to consider when buying and using an SD card. Here are a few tips and tricks.

This post was translated from English with the permission of Jeff Cable from his blog post and supplemented with my experience.

I use these SD cards:

First we clarify briefly again what an SD card is.

Many see it as just a piece of plastic or metal and don't think much about it. But there is a lot of technology and intelligence in the shell. More precisely, a flash memory, a controller and much more. Most of the time, the quality and speed of the SD card depends on these two components.

Every SD card has a so-called file allocation table (FAT). In the broadest sense, an SD card is a book and the FAT is its table of contents. Formatting the SD card does not delete its content, only the table of contents. That means the content of the “chapter” is still there. But there are no more references to it. Yes, the files are all still on the SD card until you continue shooting or taking photos and overwrite them. That is the reason why Lexar’s Image Rescue Pro, SanDisk’s Rescue Pro or other data recovery programs are able to rescue files from the SD card after formatting (but before overwriting).

 

7 TIPS FOR SD CARDS IN THE ORDER OF THEIR IMPORTANCE:

 

1. DELETENO WAY FILES FROM THE SD CARD IN YOUR CAMERA!

Don't go through the files in the camera's Explorer and delete individual recordings. You can see that people (including professional photographers and filmmakers) do this over and over again. This is a VERY bad idea! Your camera can take great photos or videos, but it is not very smart about data management on the memory card. Deleting files with the camera is a surefire way to mess up the File Allocation Table (FAT). YOU DO NOT WANT THAT. In addition, memory cards have become so cheap and large that it is not necessary to save space at any cost. Just insert a new card and keep turning. Once all of the images have been downloaded and saved, format and use the cardafter that further.

 

2. FORMAT THE SD CARD IN YOUR CAMERA AND NOT ON YOUR COMPUTER

Often, websites recommend their readers to format their SD card on their computer. This is misinformation! It is advisable to format the cards in the camera in which they are to be used. I'm currently shooting with the Sony a7s, theSonya7sii and a Panasonic Lumix GH4. Ideally, the memory cards should be formatted in the respective camera. You read that correctly: You shouldn't format the SD card in a Sony camera and insert it into another and continue working there. Each model prefers its own formatting and applies it differently.

 

3. FORMAT YOUR SD CARDTOTHE TURN

Speaking of formatting. It is always a good idea to format your memory cards after the shoot, as soon as you have saved them in more than one place. That keeps the cards tidy.

 

4. USE A GOOD CARD READER!

Too often you see professional cameramen who shoot with a € 10,000 camera and then read their cards with a cheap no name card reader. The readers have intelligent controllers and software in them, just like the cards. More cards are destroyed in readers than in cameras.

I use this SD card reader: Transcend card reader

5. REMOVE THE MEMORY CARD DURING THE WRITE OR READ PROCESSNOT

If the process of writing to or reading from a memory card is abruptly interrupted, there is a good chance that you will lose your data. It's also best not to trust the lights on your computer or reader. After the lamp has gone out, it is better to wait 5 seconds before pulling out and eject it safely.

 

6. REDUNDANT STORAGE

If your camera has two card slots, use these to save your data redundantly on the second card. This means you are on the safe side if a card fails.

 

7. BUY SD CARDS FROM KNOWN BRANDS

There are many brands that offer SD cards (SanDisk, Lexar, Samsung, and many more). Always remember that you trust your memory card with all of the work. Especially when working for customers, you definitely don't want to have to explain why all the data was lost. In addition, you use your memory card again and again and the few euros more for a reliable card definitely pay off. If you use expensive cameras and lenses you shouldn't skimp on accessories!

WIDELY MOST COMMON MISTAKES ABOUT SD CARD

 

1. DATA ON AN SD CARD THAT HAS FALLEN IN THE WATER IS LOST

This is not always true, since the memory consists of a so-called Solid State Drive (SSD), it can theoretically survive a washing and drying process. Should I still use the card afterwards? Probably not. But the data may well be able to be recovered.

 

2. YOU MUST TRANSPORT SD CARDS IN CASES

The white plastic sleeves do not protect the cards much more than their own sleeves. You also don't necessarily need so-called SD card cases for protection. Personally, I still use a memory card cover for around 10 € to keep things tidy and to sort my cards in it. This gives you an overview of which cards are written on or empty. In addition, you don't have to collect all the cards individually when packing.

3. X-RAYS CLEAR DATA

Sometimes at the airport I catch myself having a queasy feeling in my stomach when my camera bag goes through the X-ray machine. However, this is not necessary as it cannot harm the SD cards.

 

CONCLUSION

 

Finally, I hope this post has given you a little more insight into the technology and functionality of memory cards. When I read Jeff Cable's blog post (based on this post, as described above), I realized that I pay very little attention to my memory cards and that I take their reliability for granted. However, there is so much technology and responsibility in these little things that they should be treated a little more sensitively.