D7500 and memory cards

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by tommarcus, Jul 11, 2020.

  1. currently use a 256 gb one, rated for 4k uhd video. At the cheapest quality jpeg setting and small file size, i can get 16,000 images.

    Trying to find a source for low cost, smaller sized memory cards. So many companies slap "high speed" and "extreme" on cards, its a joke trying to figure out what is what speed wise.

    Is there a good part number to hunt down.. or just make sure it says "4k UHD video rated"
  2. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    The D7500 cannot take advantage of the higher speed of UHS-II SD cards. Therefore, there is no point to pay extra for UHS-II.

    If you are after 256G, something like this SanDisk should be fine:
    SanDisk 256GB Extreme PRO UHS-I SDXC Memory Card

    Also check this page on Nikon's web site:

    In case someone is not familiar with UHS-II, those faster cards have a second row of electronic contacts on the back side:


  3. First go to page 346 in the (North American English version) D7500 manual. It tells you exactly what you need. You need a SDXC I card that specifies UHS Speed Class 3. If you look at the image Shun uploaded (above) you will see the SanDisk card has the proper marking - SDXC I, a 3 in the U signifying UHS Speed class 3, and Speed Class 10 signified by the digits 10 encircled in a C. Speed Class and UHS Speed Class are two different specifications; you need both. You may read about them here:

    LINK SD card - Wikipedia

    I would add, purchase a reputable brand, such as SanDisk, from a reputable dealer such as BH or Amazon, but only if sold by Amazon itself.

    Right now 64 GB cards are selling for about $20. I do not consider that very expensive.

    A disadvantage to high capacity cards is that if a card fails, there is the potential of losing a very large number of images. It is safer to you several smaller cards. I, personally, have never come close to filling a 54 GB card in a day's shooting.
  4. UHSII cards are compatible with UHSI cameras, but download to a computer twice as fast if you have a UHSII reader.

    A large SD card (e.g., 128 GB) holds more photos that I typically take in a day. My camera is set to open a new folder each day named with a date. I download the latest folders to my computer daily, which minimizes the risk of loss, but I don't always reformat the card until it is full. On vacation, I might fill two of those cards in a day.
    mag_miksch likes this.
  5. I'm using Kingston "Canvas React" cards in my faster cameras, they about hit the limit for UHS1 performance (80MB/s write speed) without paying the premium for Sandisk, I find them to be a good price/performance ratio.

    They've been discontinued now, the nearest replacement appears to be the "Plus Canvas GO!" or the "Canvas Select Plus" (but only in it's larger capacities), cards that were previously slower in their non-"Plus" forms. The "React" cards are now UHS2 and I'll be getting a couple for my X-T2 one day and moving the current fast UHS1 cards down to my other cameras that can't take advantage of UHS2.

    I buy direct from Kingston,prices are very reasonable, at least here in France (cheaper than Amazon).

    For cameras that don't shoot fast bursts (which tends to be all of them), I use 16GB cards from Sandisk and Kingston, nothing fast, 10MB/s write speed is enough for normal use, I take a bunch with me on holiday and change them daily. I don't often find I need more than 16GB per day, shooting RAW+jpeg.

    Look at the write speed of the card when buying, many only quote the read speed, and appear to be reluctant to mention the write speed at all!
  6. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    If one doesn't shoot video, I think a 64G or 128G SD card is plenty. I prefer to have more capacity around for just in case, but one does not have to fill a card when you don't feel comfortable to have way too many images on one card.

    However, if you shoot video, a 256G or even higher capacity maybe necessary. My rule of thumb for 4K video is about 1G per minute. I have shot over a couple of hours in one morning such that I recently bought a 256G CFexpress card for my Nikon Z6.
  7. Well take RAW then.....;)

    There's no good reason to take a JPEG (compressed) image ONLY. If you need a JPEG for quick sharing, use RAW + JPEG.

    When you do take an image someone wants to buy or make a big poster from, a small JPEG is not your friend....:(
  8. bgelfand said:

    “A disadvantage to high capacity cards is that if a card fails, there is the potential of losing a very large number of images. It is safer to you several smaller cards.”

    Very true. I shoot my 16 mp D7000 with a 32 gb card in slot 1 for raw files and a 16 gb card in slot 2 for basic jpgs. The jpgs are for convenience, mainly when I’m traveling. In that setup, I’ve never needed to put a second card in the camera in a single day’s shooting, even in Yellowstone shooting animals in spring!

    In my 24 mp D610, those same cards sometimes leads to needing a second card in slot 1 for a full day’s shooting, but quite infrequently (in fact, just once).

    mike_halliwell said:

    “There's no good reason to take a JPEG (compressed) image ONLY. If you need a JPEG for quick sharing, use RAW + JPEG.

    When you do take an image someone wants to buy or make a big poster from, a small JPEG is not your friend....”

    Also very true. You can set up your D7500 to save both raw and basic jpg to the card slot, and always have the jpgs available for routine and convenient use, plus the raw file for any image to you want to sell, donate, or print large, including when you want to crop the image and print it. To accomplish that, I suggest a couple of 64 gb cards (each should be large enough to hold a full day of raw+basic jpg), and keep your 256 gb card for when you want to shoot video.

    My routine for quite a few years now is to end each day by copying all of the day’s shooting, both raw and jpg, to the hard drive on my laptop, and then copy the same data from my laptop on to a portable USB drive. I’ve been a bit paranoid about duplicate storage for a long time. Paranoia is a good thing – it has been keeping our species alive for 200,000 years.

    On one trip (50th anniversary cruise Copenhagen to NY) I didn’t take the laptop, so I took enough cards for the entire trip. I stored the cards with raw files in one card case, and cards with the jpg files in a different card case – duplicate storage. Harder to achieve with only one card slot.
  9. I match the card to the resolution of the camera, and definitely prefer dual slots.

    These days, I work a lot with a D800/D810 pair(to avoid switching lenses). Both have 64gb SD cards in them that pretty much only get removed once a month at most unless I go wild on shooting. I direct JPEGs to those.

    My RAWs go to the CF card, and I generally use a 32gb or 64gb, with a lot of that depending on how much I intend to shoot. I always carry spares, and often change those regularly(and consequently have a lot more 32s than 64s). I still can't manage to fill a 32gb card up with RAWs(which are ~80mb from the those cameras) in a typical day, and don't want to put "all my eggs in one basket" so to speak so that a card failure won't wipe out an entire trip. BTW, the worst card failure I've had was a 64gb Sandisk CF that just refused to quit taking new files but I was able to get everything off fine-I didn't trust it after that and Sandisk replaced it free. Still, though, it doesn't hurt to be paranoid.

    Among my other regularly used cameras, my D500 doesn't get used terribly often but is also a camera where I do tend to rack up a lot of frames in one outing. It usually has a high end 64gb SD card riding in it for JPEGs, but I don't cheap out on that as I don't want to have that card bottleneck the camera. My RAWs go to the XQD. So far I only have two of those-a 64gb and a 120gb. There again, even shooting heavy, I can't fill the 64gb in a day. I really like XQDs, but they scare me because they are so expensive.

    I usually run dual 16gb CFs in my D3s, which is plenty given the file size.

    The only odd one out for me is the Df, which I travel with a lot when photography is not the main goal(or of course walking around with old/oddball lenses where it's well suited). It only has a single SD slot, and I do usually run a single 64gb in it. That still holds a ton even with RAW+JPEG from a 16mp camera.
  10. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    It all depends on camera resolution (pixel count) and usage. I too by far prefer dual memory card slots.

    The thing is that on my D500 and D850, there is one XQD slot and one SD slot. Even though I use an expensive UHS-II SD card, it is still the slower card and can slow down the camera's operation for action photography. Therefore, in these days I just use one XQD card on my D500 and leave the SD slot open. The newly introduced Canon R5 (CFx + UHS-II SD) is going to have similar issues. Ideally, it would be nice to have dual XQD/CFx slots, but the camera gets bulky like the Canon 1DxIII and Nikon D5/D6.

    Another issue is camera usage. In the one most extreme case, I have shot 2000 images within one hour with my D5. Somehow like 200 pelicans flew in during that one hour and I was shooting like crazy. The 20MP D5 has a moderately low pixel count in today's standards, but since it is an action cam, it is best to use larger-capacity memory cards in them. Assuming an average of 25MB for lossless compressed NEF files on the D5, 2000 images take up about 50MB. I came pretty close to filling the 64G card inside my D5 all in one hour.

    If the OP is going to use the D7500 for action photography, I would put at least 64G, 128G SD cards inside. You don't have to fill up those card. Do upload at least once a day or rotate a number of cards. If we are talking about 4K video, again, expect about 1G per minute of capture. A one-hour wedding can easily fill your 64G card.

  11. the nikon manual says something about only being able to take 39 minutes of 4k video on a single video card. SO i guess my 256gb card will become my video card. And i do need to get decent small ones.

    Just that alot of companies are mixing the capabilities up between the generations. What i mean is i was at the store and i found alot of sdxc 1 uhs speed class 1 cards with c 10 speed ratings.. do annoying confusing. I think ill just stick to the higher end crds, at least that way i can use them and if and when i upgrade to a higher end camera i wont have to worry about a replacement set of memory cards.

    so far i shoot lossless raw and lossless fine jpeg medium size.
  12. I think you will find ALL "Still" cameras, i.e. DSLR cameras, not classified as Video Cameras are limited to taking videos of under 30 minutes. Most have a maximum of 29 minutes 59 seconds (or less). This is not a technical limitation but a legal limitation. If the camera can take videos of 30 minutes or more, it is classified as a Video Camera and higher import taxes apply. Manufacturers do not like to pay higher taxes, so the camera is limited to 29 min - 59 sec.

    Many Nikon DSLR cameras also have a maximum file length of 4 GB per movie file. A 256 GB card is overkill.

    See Page 188 of the American English version of the Users Manual
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2020
  13. then that m
    eans i should be able to do several movies on the same card
  14. Have not tried it myself, because i am mainly interrested in still's, but there seem to be solutions for some Nikon camera's for the time limitation for vioe length restrictions :

    Finally, there is a video firmware hack for Nikon! by Filmtools - ProVideo Coalition
  15. The main limitation to continuous video shooting time would appear to be battery capacity and temperature - not to mention viewer boredom threshold!

    Shooting HD or 4K video warms up the sensor, battery and camera innards considerably, and extended continuous shooting could cause damage to the camera if firmware or hardware thermal failsafes are defeated.

    My Sony A7Riv manual warns about this, despite the camera not having any firmware limitation to video shooting length. There are thermal trips that cut in and continuous video recording time is limited by ambient temperature.
  16. downloading 1600 photos from the memory card through the nikon cable leaves the area behind the screen very hot. id hate to think what it would be like from shooting video all day
  17. Writing or reading from cards does seem to be one of the big generators of heat.

    My Fujis become noticably warm to touch (metal body) when shooting repeated quick bursts, for example shooting an event where I'll typically fire a burst of two or three shots with flash, kind of a 'poor man's red eye reduction', then move and shoot again.

    When copying from my memory cards to my computer, I use a dedicated Kingston card reader, it has fairly hefty aluminium body which becomes hot, uncomfortable to touch after copying 16GB at 90MB/s. I'm assuming they went with a metal body because they needed to for heat dissipation, rather than just for looks.
  18. When I got my first high resolution DSLR that took CF cards, the D800, I bought a nice little pop-up Lexar USB 3.0 CF/SD card reader. Last year, when I bought the D500, I bought the then current Sony XQD/SD USB 3.0 reader(which I think has now been updated into a newer model). Before that, I'd mostly worked with SD readers built into computers(the one on my MBP is PCIe and is quite fast), and with a mix of USB 2.0 and FW400 CF readers. The other day, I used my FW reader to pull about 500 photos off a card used in either the D800 or D810(doesn't make a ton of difference which it was as far as file size) and it seemed like it would never get done.

    In any case, one of the biggest things I notice is that cards-especially metal CF and XQDs-get HOT when pulling images off. I've noticed the same thing with USB 3.0 flash drives when I'm doing something write-intensive like making a bootable installer. I import images on my laptop to a second 2TB spinning hard drive that doesn't generate a ton of heat even when writing a lot, but when I use to do them onto the primary SSD I could both feel it getting hot(in the old "thick" unibody MacBook pros that take a conventional 2.5" drive, the drive is just under the aluminum left palm rest) and could see the temperature climb.

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