Monday, January 9, 2012

New Flash Memory from Sony

Sony has announced a new flash memory card called  an XQD flash memory card. It is developed with better speed and capacity than its CompactFlash predecessor.
The new card which is supposed to come in two models, the 16GB QD-H16 card and the 32GB QD-H32 goes for $129.99 and for $229.99 respectively. The cards are scheduled to be available in February this year. 
The SD card technology is making the cards smaller and smaller and most devices these days are manufactured to use these smaller SD Card technology. On the contrary high-end SLR cameras from Sony, Canon and Nikon, still use CompactFlash memory cards because of their performance and capacity.
The new XQD format developed by Sony also trys to keep ahead of SD by borrowing the PCI(Peripheral Controller Interface) Express; (PCIe) high-speed serial communications link interface from computers. Users can transfer data off the cards without having to plug their cameras into a USB port, Sony also announced the $44.99 MRW-E80 card reader that plugs in with USB 3.0 and the $44.99 QDA-EX1 adapter that plugs into laptops with ExpressCard slot. 
These cards can read and write data at up to 125MBps. That's not necessarily faster than CompactFlash--Lexar's new 1000X CF cards read at 150MBps and write at 145MBps. But though faster CompactFlash cards helped photographers, cameras can hardly keep pace with the full card speed.
Card speed compared with the XQD memory card(credit Sony)
 XQD will be able to exceed 2 terabytes capacity eventually, according to the  CompactFlash Association, which developed the format. Second-and third-generation versions of PCIe double and quadruple transfer speeds to 250MBps and 500MBps. The initial cards use the first-generation interface, but PCIe provides for backward compatibility so that newer devices will be able to use older XQD cards.
The XQD cards don't fit into CompactFlash slots, and vice versa. The XQD cards are smaller than CompactFlash but larger than SD cards.

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