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GH5 and GH5s SD cards.


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Hi I have a documentary coming up and need to travel light for it. I want bring alot of SD cards and record to 2 cards at once instead of bring hard drives along for back up. 

What are the cheapest and most reliable SD cards for the 4k 10bit 150mbps?

I use the SanDisk 128GB Extreme PRO UHS-I SDXC Memory Card 95MB/S flawlessly with that record setting.

But I noticed there is a new generation of the Extreme Pro that is faster and also the lower level cards SanDisk Extreme (non Pro) versions are rated at 150MB/S and $20 cheaper for the 256gb. 

Are people using the lower level non Pro versions with any issues? 

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I've been using 'SanDisk Extreme PLUS 128 GB microSDXC Memory Card + SD Adapter' in a G80 at 100 Mbps &  a G9 at 150 Mbps (4k50p) recently on a long trip. Note that they are only 'V30' video rated - this means they should sustain a minimum of 30 Mbytes/sec write speed (=240 Mbps), so are not suitable for 400 Mbps.

See here for SD card video speed ratings - https://www.sdcard.org/consumers/choices/speed_class/index.htmlhttps://www.sdcard.org/consumers/choices/speed_class/index.html

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SanDisk Extreme Pro have been my choice since the GH2 days (the only ones reliable enough to span; also recommended use for BMPCC by Blackmagic Design).

Had some theories before V60/V90 was mainstream...



The 95MB/s* seems to classify as V30 (so max. sustained 30MB/s, 150Mbit/s should be a little less than 20MB/s, so I imagine that's fine; *read, 90MB/s write). More about speed classes, as you've probably seen, here: https://www.sdcard.org/consumers/choices/speed_class/index.html. Haven't seen any official V60 cards yet (required for GH5 w/ firmware update; 400MBit/s - 50MB/s, so V60), but I have V90 and those would roughly be the ones with spec: R280/W250. The Panasonic and Delkin ones, don't come cheap though. If 90 equals 30 and 250 equals 90, you're looking at about a factor 3x. So, 60x3=180 (also 90+30=120/2=60 and 250+90=340/2=170). That's the exact writespeed of the 'Transcend Ultimate SDXC 64GB, UHS-II U3/Class 10'. With all that said, draw your own conclusions and then check cards available and pricing right here.

Though I've seen one ADATA card with V90 classification that fails to follow this logic, but I would still prefer other cards because it does make me wary (dropped frames and whatnot). I personally will keep getting SanDisk cards, they've been holding up superbly since the GH2 and BMPCC days and I've tried many brands since, but SanDisk are the ones that has that lasting impression of high standard, high quality. Their R95/W90 cards later got classified as V30, so I can imagine the W280 and W300 cards will keep up fine too in the V60+ segment. V60 (or V90 if you feel like it) is basically what you'll need for the FW update (and wanting to use those high bitrate settings). Before 150Mbit/s ~ 20MB/s, V30 or not even, should do, but I'd buy stuff with an eye on the future.


Kinda seems to hold up for the most part though. Weirdly... SanDisk never actually officially rated their R300/W260 cards with a V-classification and in the back of my mind that does somewhat bothers me. So... currently I'm using Toshiba Exceria Pro N502 cards, which are R270/W260 V90 and I consider good value (highest speed card (W200+) at lowest price per GB) and quality. Next to come close is the ADATA Premier ONE R290/W260, but read they're a little iffy. Lexar have been taken over, so kind of questionable... also I generally don't like manufacturers selling cards with like '2000x' ratings for some reason, lol. The R300/W260 ain't officially V-rated either, so: 'no' from me. What else... Delkin... Integral... Goodram, yeah, not so sure about those. In the top league there then is Angelbird AV PRO and Sony SF-G Tough series (and Panasonic Gold), but they're on the pricey end...

So... Toshiba Exceria for me. Also because they stress it to be 8K compatible. Didn't really see anybody else claiming that. Apparently they've just rebranded to Kioxia 2 months ago ('Kioxia is a combination of the Japanese word kioku meaning “memory” and the Greek word axia meaning “value”'). Their market does not seem to include the US.

But back to your situation... the SanDisk Extreme R150/W70 256GB (though V30 rated) is actually a downgrade from your R95/W90 card (as writespeed is always the determining factor here). Though it should work, atleast look to go up from there to say the SanDisk Extreme PRO R170/W90 256GB if you can still find some somewhere.

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The Sandisk 170 ones work fine and are cheaper than the 95s. I was told by my supplier that they are basically just the replacement model. I was also told that prices have been changing almost weekly as they are trying to corner the market. No idea if that's true mind! What is true is that the 170 ones are great value. I bought 2 128gb ones for around 42€ each. Been using them for a couple of months.

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A lot of cards yeild very weird benchmark results for write speeds.

I find some V60 and even V90 cards get fragmented and lose 50% of their performance, making for laggy start/stop in 400Mbit/s ALL-I, slower buffering of stills and premature recording end sometimes too.

This is one of the more weirder benchmarks


Then another test might be totally different (depends if video related or stills)


So take all stuff like this with heavy pinch of salt.

I'd recommend buying a range of cards and sending back the ones that don't perform after 1-2 weeks of intensive testing.

Only then can you be sure you're getting value for money and reliability.

I found the chart at the bottom of this article quite useful though. It also tests sustained random write speeds not just sequential.


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Also, if you're going to test the cards by recording with the camera, make sure to record something with intense movement, not just a still scene.  The bitrates can be a lot lower in reality if nothing much is moving.  Trees blowing in the wind, fountains (zooming into just the water spraying part), or design your own.

I got five still images that were completely different, put them into a 1080p60 timeline and exported them as a prores file.  Then play the video on loop so it just sits and kind of flickers as the video loops.  Then point the camera at it, set a smaller aperture to get everything in focus, and record it at 24/25p for a few minutes.  I analysed the footage I took to confirm that this test works and even if the shutter is open between frames no frame is anything like the previous one.

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