A few years after the SD (secure digital) format was created, a couple of new variations have emerged. They are SDHC (high capacity) and SDXC (extended capacity), and they are backwards compatible with SD. This means that a device which supports SDHC or SDXC can use SD, SDHC, and SDXC cards. How different, then, are these new variations? Let’s take a look.
Unlike SD and SDHC cards, which use a different type of memory, SDXC cards use exFAT. While it’s about as cryptic as you can get, it’s still easy to understand. Microsoft created the proprietary exFAT standard to replace the ageing and outdated FAT32. So, what’s the difference? Like FAT32, exFAT uses 32-bit numbers to address data allocation. However, it can also support storage capacities beyond 4GB, which isn’t possible in FAT32. The key difference is the way in which it handles files larger than 4GB. FAT32 is limited to 32-bit numbers and 4GB files, so it can only support files up to 4GB. This is why
Memory card capacities and names are often described by the file systems installed on them. With SD cards becoming increasingly popular on all kinds of devices, choosing the right card can be a tricky task.
In this article, we compare SDHC and SDXC cards to find out which one is better.
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SD cards are what we are all used to. However, their capacity is limited to 2 GB. As the name suggests, SDHC cards, also known as high capacity Secure Digital cards, can store up to 32 GB of data. These cards are also much faster in terms of data transfer speed compared to older SD cards.
SDXC is the next step after SDHC cards. This term stands for Secure Digital Extended Capacity and the capacity of these cards is up to 2 TB. The data transfer speeds are similar to SDHC cards, but the prices are also higher.
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The obvious differences are in card capacity, transfer speed and price. However, there are some things you should consider before making a purchase.
As mentioned above, SDXC cards have a higher capacity than SDHC cards. SDHC cards are available in capacities of 4, 8, 16 and 32 GB, while SDXC cards are available in the same increments, up to 2 TB.
Although the data transfer rate varies greatly depending on the class of the card, in general even a lower class SDXC card will have a slightly higher or even comparable data transfer rate to the corresponding lower class SDHC card.
SDHC cards can read up to 10 MB/s and SDXC cards up to 300 MB/s. Note that these figures are expressed in megabytes per second and should not be confused with megabits per second (represented by Mbps).
Some cards show speed as a number followed by an X. The X symbol is a marketing gimmick. 1x equals 150 kbit/s. So a card with a value of 600X offers a reading speed of 90 MB/s (600 x 150 = 90,000). The speeds indicated on the cards are almost always read speeds, which are usually higher than write speeds.
SDXC cards use the exFAT file system, which is better suited for their large file capacities. SDHC cards, on the other hand, use the traditional FAT32 file system, which works best on small capacity cards that cannot take advantage of exFAT.
Because of their obvious advantages, SDXC cards are priced significantly higher than their SDHC counterparts. Of course, the price of an individual card depends on its size and class (2, 4, 6 or 10), but as a general rule you can expect an SDXC card to cost more on average than an SDHC card.
|Capacity||Up to 32 GB||Up to 2 TB|
|Memorization rate||Read speed up to 10MB/s.||Read speed up to 300MB/s.|
|Price||It’s usually cheaper.||More expensive than SDHC cards.|
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The decision mainly depends on where you want to use the card and how you will use it. If you’re considering buying the best memory card for your DSLR or mirrorless camera, you can probably get away with a good SDHC card unless you have a high-end product.
Well, as long as you take pictures. If you plan to record video, especially at resolutions higher than 1080p, consider an SDXC card. A larger capacity not only gives you more recording time, but also works better with your camera, which needs a higher speed to record properly at higher resolutions.
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