There are different aspects to consider when choosing SD cards. Speed and reliability are some of the most important factors to keep in mind, but you should also think about compatibility to make sure that the card works well with the devices you use. Of course, price will also have an impact on your decision. In this list, we’ll take a look at some of the best SD cards available to help you find options that suit different needs. Before getting started with the list, you can check a comparison of the reading and writing speed of the SD cards in the following graph.
As previously mentioned, price and writing speed are essential when you are buying a new SD card. A card that can write the data of the photos or videos captured from the device, will help you to avoid loss of data as the buffer will not be filled. The speed of SD cards is classified following certain parameters, which are outlined below.
- Class 10 – This means that the card offers writing speed of 10MB/s at least.
- UHS-I U1 – This means that the card supports enough speed to shoot Full HD 1080p. Greater than 10MB/s constant write.
- UHS-I U3 – This indicates that the card can be used to shoot 4K Ultra HD videos with UHS-I enabled devices. This is greater than 30MB/s constant write.
Types of SD Cards
To make things easier when you are trying to decide which card is right for your needs, they have been organized in three categories: Standard, Plus and Pro. In the Pro section, you will find cards that offer read speed between 60 to 90MB/s or 600x speed. The Plus cards support read speed of up to 45MB/s or 300x speed, while the Standard cards provide read speed up to 30MB/s or 200x.
Standard cards will be enough for compact cameras, movies at resolution lower than FullHD and APS-C, but not fullframe.
Plus cards are the right option for most users who don’t require professional performance. They suit fullframe, landscape photography, streets, reflex, portrait and single-shot use. For UHS-I devices, these cards can also support movies up to FullHD.
Pro cards are ideal for full frame cameras, high-end dslr reflex and all cases in which continuous shooting, timelapse are crucial, such as in sports photography. Cards that are UHS-I U3 are suitable for shooting videos in Full HD resolution or higher including 2K and 4K UltraHD.
Pro SD Cards – 90MB/s or more
SanDisk Extreme Pro 32GB UHS-II U3 280MB/s
If you are looking for the highest level of performance regardless of the price, this card from SanDisk may be the best solution as it offers exceptional speed. It is an ideal option for users who work with many continuous shots and who require top speed to make sure that they don’t miss a single frame. This means that it is the perfect card for sports,safari or hunting photography. Since it falls within the UHS-II U3 class, it can also support high resolution video at FullHD and video recording at 4K Ultra HD. This card offers extreme speeds both in read (280MB/s) and write (250MB/s), which ensures that it can be used with 4K devices. It is water proof, X-Rat proof and can resist vibration. Overall this Pro card from SanDisk is the perfect choice for professional photographers and those who want top results.
SanDisk Extreme Pro UHS-I U3 32GB
This is another practical and affordable option for cases in which you need continuous shots and advanced speed. Since it is UHS-I U3 class, it is suitable for high resolution videos in FullHD and videos in 4K Ultra HD resolution. The read speed goes up to 95MB/s, which means that it supports fast file transfers to your computer and the write speed can reach 90MB/s, allowing any kind of task with any camcorders and cameras, even Ultra HD 4K cameras. This card is perfect for SLR cameras and fullframe cameras, as well as APS-C and full frame reflex. The card can resist vibration, X-rays and waterproof. It also comes with a lifetime warranty.
Transcend TS32GSDU3X Scheda SDHC UHS-I U3 32 GB
The fact that this Transcend card falls into UHS-I U3 class means that it can also be used to record video in 4K UltraHD. It works well for FullGD video, continuous shots and photography tasks that require top speeds such as sports, birdwatching or safari. It has a read speed of 95MB/s and write speed of 85MB/s. It is suitable for fullframe cameras, APS-C, UltraHD 4K, 2K or FullHD 3D and any type of Reflex.
Transcend TS32GSDHC10U1 SDHC, Class 10 UHS-I (Ultimate)
While it is not the most advanced card, this card from Transcend is one of the most affordable options available. It is a good option if you don’t need to record Ultra HD 4K videos. It works well for SLR, fullframe, continuous bursts of up to 5-8 photos and can also be used for recording videos in FullHD 60p.
Kingston SDA3/32GB UHS-I U3
For a reasonable price, you can get a remarkably fast card that can record video in 4K UltraHD thanks to its UHS-I U3 class. It is good for continuous shots and users who need to capture every frame of the action. It works well with APS-C, Fullframe, DSLR or mirrorless cameras and to record FullHD videos even at 60p. IT can reach 90MB/s of read speed and up to 80MB/s of write speed. The lifetime warranty ensures that you can get technical support service free of charge.
Lexar Professional 1000x UHS-II U3 32GB
This is one of the first cards in class UHS-II U3 and it can provide read speed of up to 150MB/s and write speed above 75MB/s. It will work well for those who need to use continuous shots, particularly with Fullframe Reflex. If you need to record higher resolution videos at 2K pr 4K Ultra HD, this card will also be a good solution. This Lexar SD card is ideal for Fullframe cameras, SLR cameras and all APS-C, as well as UHS-I and UHS-II devices. The card is suitable for the latest technology devices, but it can also be used with older cameras and readers. The speed and performance will depend on the device used, but in general, the card offer outstanding results. The chance to download Image Rescue software is included, which allows you to retrieve most video and photo files even if they have been erased or if the card was damaged. This card offers great value for money as the price is reasonable and the performance is fantastic, particularly with advanced devices.
Lexar Professional 600x 32GB
With read speed of 90MB/s and 45MB/s write speed, this card falls between the Pro and Plus categories. The price is in line with similar cards and it stands apart for reaching up to 256GB capacity, instead of the standard 128GB that other cards support. Lexar is a reliable brand so you can expect good performance.
Samsung SD Pro+ 32GB MB-SG32D/EU
This card manufactured by Samsung stands out for using MLC NAND-type unlike other cards that use TLC. This offers benefits in terms of durability and performance and thanks to the affordable price, the card has become a favorite option for many users. It supports 90MB/s read speed and 80MB/s write speed. The card speed class is UHS-I U1, which means that it suits Full HD 1080p videos but it is not adequate for U3. It works really well for fullframe and SLR cameras. It is waterproof, shockproof, vibration proof and X-ray resistant.
SanDisk Extreme Plus 32GB Class UHS-I U3
Offering improved performance, this new model of SanDisk Extreme is ideal for recording high resolution videos such as 4K Ultra HD or fullhd 60p thanks to its UHS-I U3 class. The card offers fast performance, supporting over 80MB/s read speed and more than 60MB/s write speed. It can be used with fullframe, SLR cameras and continuous shooting up to 10-15 pictures and more. The card is ideal for APS-C, Reflex and high resolution videocameras. It can resist X-rays, water and vibrations and comes supported by a lifetime warranty.
Sony SF 32UX SDHC UHS-I 32768 MB
The read speed of this card goes above 90MB/s and the write speed can reach up to 45MB/s. It is a good solution for users who need to use fullframe cameras, APS-C and it can also support single shot or continuous shooting of up to 5-6 shots. The card is suitable of recording videos in Full HD at 60fps as well. The UK version can support 4K as it is UHS-I U3. It comes with a 5-year warranty.
SanDisk Extreme SDHC 32GB, Class U3 UHS-I
This card is also within the UHS-I class U3 and it has characteristics that can make it considered as both a Pro and a Plus option. While its read (60MB/s) and write (40MB/s) speeds are lower than what other cards support, you can expect consistent performance and the fact that it is class U3 certified allows you to record videos in 4K UltraHD, FullHD at 60fps, Reflex and also fullframe. The convenient price will also get the attention of many users.
Plus SD Cards – Up to 45MB/s
Samsung EVO 32GB
This popular card from Samsung offers reading speed of over 45MB/s and its writing speed can reach up to 20MB/s. At the moment, you can get it for a very low price in Amazon, which is why many users opt for it. However, affordability is not the only reason to choose it. The card offers great performance and it works well with DSLR cameras, camcorders, fullframe, mobile devices and can record videos in FullHD. It belongs to the Class 10, UHS-I U1 category.
SanDisk Extreme 32GB SDSDX-032G-X46
This Class 10, UHS-I U1 card provides fantastic performance and supports read and write speed of 45MB/s, which means that it is one of the fastest options on the Plus category. It works well for practically any use, including fullframe, Reflex and videos in FullHD quality and 2K. However, it wouldn’t be the best solution for videos in 4K or for users who need to take a lot of pictures in continuous shooting in fullframe cameras.
Standard SD cards – Up to 30MB/s
SanDisk Ultra SDHC
This card combines reasonable price and good performance. However, since it falls in the Standard category, it doesn’t support the high level of reading or writing speed that you can get from other options. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work well for pictures in continuous shooting with DSLR and tasks that require extreme speed such as sports or nature photography. If you need to record videos in 2K, 4K or above FullHD, this card wouldn’t be the right choice. However, it is suitable for individual photos in Raw with entry level SLR cameras and record videos up to FullHD. It belongs to the Class 10, UHS-I U1 and the read speed is 40MB/s, while the write speed is 20MB/s.