MicroSD cards are small flash memory units in which any type of file can be stored. They can be used with different types of devices. They can even be used as internal memory in certain smartphones. Their versatility is such that new uses for them are constantly appearing.
- 1 Key Facts
- 2 Ranking: The best microSD cards in the market
- 3 Shopping Guide: Everything you should know about microSD cards
- 3.1 What is a microSD card exactly?
- 3.2 What are the main uses of microSD cards?
- 3.3 What are the advantages and disadvantages of microSD cards?
- 3.4 What types of microSD cards are available out there?
- 3.5 What do the logos on microSD cards represent?
- 3.6 How should I use my microSD card?
- 3.7 What are the new specifications for video and applications?
- 3.8 For whom are microSD cards tailored?
- 3.9 What care does a microSD card require?
- 4 Shopping Criteria
- 5 Summary
- They are very light and versatile, ideal for an ever smaller world.
- Their memory capacity has not stopped growing since the first models appeared.
- They can be used as internal memory in certain smartphones and are specifically designed to withstand extreme conditions.
Ranking: The best microSD cards in the market
You will find below our ranking of the top five microSD cards available on the Australian market. Each one stands out for its characteristics, and all offer great value for your money. Choose the one that best suits your needs!
No. 1: SanDisk Ultra, MicroSDXC UHS-I (200 GB)[amazon box=”B073JY5T7T” description_items=”0″]
SanDisk is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of microSD memory cards, so it’s no wonder this is Amazon’s Choice in the category. This microSDXC card is ideal for smartphones and new-generation Android tablets. It has a capacity of 200 GB and transfer speeds of up to 100 MB/s. Catalogued as a class 10 card, it allows you to record and play back Full HD video.
It is built to work in extreme conditions. It is resistant to water, high temperatures, shocks, X-rays and magnets. With its bang-for-your-buck price also comes an SD adapter included so you can use it virtually anywhere. No wonder this is currently one of the best-selling cards in its category.
No. 2: Samsung EVO Plus, MicroSD (32 GB)[amazon box=”B073S49S8M” description_items=”0″]
This microSD card is ideal if you don’t need a card with high specifications, but don’t want to give up high quality levels. All this comes at a really affordable price with this product. It has a capacity of 32 GB and a reading speed of up to 95MB/s. This card comes with a 12-months warranty and an adapter for use as a standard size SD.
It is compatible with virtually all devices on the market. it is a truly rugged card. It can withstand up to 24 hours immersed in salt water and temperature ranges from -25ºC to 85ºC. If you need more space, you can opt for other models in the series with more storage capacity.
No. 3: SanDisk Ultra, MicroSDXC UHS-I (32 GB)[amazon box=”B073JYVKNX” description_items=”0″]
None other than the little sister of our ranking’s no. 1, this card offers a great value for money that has made it a true Amazon best seller. It allows reading speeds of up to 98 MB/s and has a storage capacity of 32 GB, and its Class 10 means it is fit for Full HD video recording and playback.
It is recommended for smartphones and tablets with Android operating system and MIL cameras. As a category A1, it is optimised for applications, ensuring a much faster startup and higher performance of applications. Like all SanDisk products, it is designed to withstand extreme conditions and comes with an SD adapter.
No. 4: Kingston SDCS, MicroSD Canvas Select (32 GB)[amazon box=”B079GTYCW4″ description_items=”0″]
Catalogued as a UHS-I Class 10 card, it offers reading speeds of up to 80 MB/s. It has a capacity of 32 GB and allows filming and taking photos in high definition. This microSD card was built for tough conditions. This is the perfect card for those on a tight budget.
It is resistant to water immersions of up to 30 minutes, shock, vibration and temperatures of up to 85ºC. It is also X-ray-proof and has a handy write switch. All this also comes with a quality guarantee offered by a prestigious brand in the industry, Kingston. The value for money of this product is exactly what customers have praised.
No. 5: SanDisk Extreme, MicroSDXC (256 GB)[amazon box=”B07FCR3316″ description_items=”0″]
This SanDisk card offers fast transfer speeds with great performance for both applications and videos. With reading speeds of up to 160 MB/s and writing speeds of up to 90 MB/s, it allows you to record 4K UHD or Full HD videos and take high-resolution photos. This card is perfect for your Android device, action camera or drone.
This category A2 card offers maximum performance for applications. It also offers 4K UHD compatibility with UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) and Video Speed Class 30 (V30). It is built to operate in especially difficult conditions. It offers an unbeatable level of quality. Unfortunately, its price is also quite steep.
Shopping Guide: Everything you should know about microSD cards
We recommend you to take into account a number of factors before purchasing your microSD card. Don’t forget that different types of microSD cards exist, each with specific characteristics. This is why we will now address the questions most frequently asked by users so that your new purchase doesn’t turn into a flop.
What is a microSD card exactly?
The microSD format is the smallest flash memory available today. Its dimensions are 15 x 11 x 10 mm. It was developed by SanDisk and later adopted by the SD Association. Due to the advantages its small size offers, it instantly became very popular.
What are the main uses of microSD cards?
Currently, they are mainly used with smartphones. They allow you to save files, make backups and even increase your phone’s internal memory. Similarly, microSD cards are widely used in digital cameras.
Drone cameras also work with microSD cards. Another increasingly popular application is as gaming console memory. Their use is for example very common with Nintendo’s latest console, the Nintendo Switch.
Their applications have certainly continued to develop with their ever-increasing storage capacity.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of microSD cards?
One of the biggest advantages of microSD cards is that they allow a large amount of information to be stored in a very small space. Documents and files can therefore easily be transported. In addition to this, the fairly low prices are still decreasing.
On the contrary, a disadvantage of microSD cards is that they do not offer as much storage capacity as other devices. In recent years, however, this gap has considerably narrowed. Moreover, due to their small size, they can easily be lost. So if you have the tendency of being forgetful, you’d better be more careful with this little piece of hardware.
What types of microSD cards are available out there?
First of all, you will find the original microSD cards, with a maximum memory of 2 GB. However, they are already considered obsolete. The next generation consists of the microSDHC cards, with a capacity of up to 32 GB. Finally, the microSDXC cards can store up to 2 TB.
- MicroSD (maximum capacity: 2 GB)
- MicroSDHC (maximum capacity: 32 GB)
- MicroSDXC (maximum capacity: 2 TB)
MicroSDXC cards are ordered by classes. Each class indicates the writing speed of the card. Class 2 cards have a speed of 2 MB/s, class 4 cards have 4 MB/s of speed, and so on. There is also the UHS (Ultra high Speed) class, which has its own classification. This class is composed of the following subclasses: UHS-I, UHS-II and UHS-III.
What do the logos on microSD cards represent?
The logos present on microSD cards give you information about their characteristics. You can take a look at the product to get an idea. The logos will allow you to know which devices they can work with, what their speed class is and which interface they are compatible with. Their capacity is naturally visible too.
How should I use my microSD card?
Its use is quite simple. Simply insert the card into the dedicated slot, either in a phone or another device. You now have to wait a few seconds until the device recognises the card. It is recommended to insert it with the equipment turned off. You should never try to force entry into any slot.
On the other hand, certain adapters are available to use microSD cards as if they were standard-sized. For computers that don’t feature a card reader, you can also find USB adapters that make it possible to read them.
What are the new specifications for video and applications?
The SD Association recently added two new variables to the specifications of SD cards. They are the following: the Video Speed Class and the Application Performance Class. The first represents the suitability of the card for recording video. The second, on the other hand, indicates how appropriate it is for use with applications.
The symbols used for the Video Speed Class range from V6 to V90. In these cases, the speeds range from 6 MB/s for the V6, to 90 MB/s for the V90, with which 8K video can be recorded.
The Application Performance Class consists of classes A1 and A2, which indicate how suitable it is for storing applications and their data.
For whom are microSD cards tailored?
They are recommended for people who need to expand the memory of their mobile phone or camera, as well as those who want a light and space-saving storage unit. Generally speaking, anyone who wants to take advantage of what they offer should purchase one.
What care does a microSD card require?
Like any electronic product, microSD cards require some looking after. Fortunately, they are very resistant products that could even withstand going through the washing machine. However, it is better not to try your luck and avoid contact with water.
MicroSD cards should be stored in low humidity environments. It is best to remove them with the computer, mobile phone or camera turned off to avoid losing data. Another option is to use the safe extraction function. It is also recommended to store them in their case when not in use to prevent them from bending or breaking.
We will now discuss a number of important aspects you should take into consideration before buying a microSD card. That way, you’ll be more likely to be satisfied with your purchase. We don’t want you to be disappointed with your microSD card after a few months!
- Personal use
- Memory capacity
- Writing and reading speed
- File formats
You may need the microSD card for a mobile phone, tablet, eReader, camera, computer or game console. You might even want one to simply move information between different devices. Whatever it may be, your intended use will clearly determine which card you need.
In general, any type of card is good for taking pictures. If you plan on recording high quality video, your best option is to choose a card that allows it. The same applies if you want to install mobile applications on it.
You will need a class 4 or higher card for HD videos, and a U3 or higher to record in Ultra HD.
A card’s memory is usually measured in gigabytes (GB). As you can imagine, not all microSD cards have the same storage capacity. More memory naturally means more information stored. However, you should also take into account the maximum capacity supported by the device in which you plan on using it.
Writing and reading speed
The speed class of a card is what will indicate the minimum sustained writing speed of a card. This speed is measured in MB/s. However, with the arrival of the SDHC and SDXC models, the SD Association created the new UHS Speed Class. Let’s see the speeds for each class in the table below.
|Class 2||2 MB/s|
|Class 4||4 MB/s|
|Class 6||6 MB/s|
|Class 8||8 MB/s|
|Class 10||10 MB/s|
|UHS-I Class 1 (U1)||10 MB/s|
|UHS-I Class 3 (U3)||30 MB/s|
|Video Speed Class V60||60 MB/s|
This factor is key for a good experience on your smartphone. Nowadays, it is recommended to opt for a class 10 card minimum. For video recordings, you must use higher classes, such as the V60. This will allow you to record videos in 4K and 8K format.
Also called file system, the format is the way in which a memory unit organises stored content or information. This is why it must first be formatted in order to use any type of storage unit. There are several types of formats, and some of the most common are FAT32, NTFS and ExFAT.
It is important that you don’t overlook this factor when buying your microSD card. Unfortunately, not all devices or computers support the same types of formats. For example, the new SDXC cards can only work with the exFAT format, compatible only with Windows XP SP2 and higher.
This is by no means a secondary aspect. The strength of a microSD card is a very important factor to keep in mind. Nothing is more frustrating than losing information stored in a memory device, especially if it is very important and you haven’t done the necessary backup.
Top brands offer very resistant microSD cards. Their cards are designed to withstand shocks, resist the effects of magnetic forces or X-rays. Some can even endure long periods of immersion in water without damage. Accidents do happen, so it’s always better to be safe than sorry!
The choice of brand is one of the most important aspects to consider when making a purchase. The brand of a product is closely related to quality, warranty and price. Some of the main manufacturers of microSD cards are: SanDisk, Panasonic, Toshiba, Samsung and Kingston.
A good manufacturer can guarantee that the specifications are accurate and that the card works properly. Similarly, when purchasing a microSD, make sure it is not a counterfeit. You can find counterfeit cards of some of the most recognised brands on the market.
The use of microSD cards has considerably increased in recent years. This is due to the growing demand for greater storage capacity i mobile phones. Another important factor is the higher image recording quality of today’s digital cameras.
At the same time, their capacity has rapidly improved and new models have appeared following this tendency. So if you’re thinking about buying a microSD card, it is important to take a number of aspects into account. You should consider, amongst others, the use you’ll make of it, its capacity and recording speed. The price is naturally always important.
We hope you found this guide useful. If so, we would appreciate it if you could share it with your friends. We would also love to hear from you, so don’t hesitate to leave a comment!
(Source of featured image: Pontchour: 64068821/ 123rf.com)