Transcend curries 4K favor with faster SD cards

For videographers shooting high-resolution video, the Taiwanese flash-card maker has two new choices with faster write speeds and capacities up to 128GB.

Stephen Shankland principal writer
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Transcend's Extreme model of UHS-1 Class 3 SD card has read speeds of 95MBps, write speeds of 85MBps, and a maximum capacity of 64GB.
The Transcend Extreme UHS-1 Class 3 SD card. Transcend
Memory card maker Transcend announced higher-speed SD cards on Friday that are geared for videographers shooting high-resolution 4K video.

Transcend's new SDHC and SDXC cards are graded UHS-1 Class 3 and come in two varieties. The "Extreme" models have read and write speeds of 95MBps and 85MBps, respectively.

The non-extreme models have read and write speeds of 95MBps and 60MBps, respectively.

The newer UHS-1 (Ultra High Speed) Class 3 specification requires sustained write performance of 30MBps.

Transcend's lower-end UHS-1 Class 3 card. Transcend

Yes, SD card categorization is a bottomless pit of acronyms. And here are two more: SDHC and SDXC, which govern maximum capacity. SDHC models top out at 32GB capacity, but SDXC can go much, much higher.

Transcend's SDXC models reach 128GB, enough for 8 hours of UltraHD video shot at a resolution of 4096x2160, with a 35Mbps bitrate and the H.264 AVC compression standard. The Extreme models top out at 64GB, though.

The SDXC Extreme models cost $59 for 32GB and $119 for 64GB. The somewhat slower models cost $49 for 64GB and $109 for 128GB.

The SD Card Association's attempt to demystify their flash cards' transfer-speed ratings.
The SD Card Association's attempt to demystify the transfer-speed ratings of its flash cards. SD Card Association