It seems that ProGrade Digital really isn’t messing around here. Early last month, they said they were going to skip XQD in favour of its next-generation replacement, CFexpress. Today, ProGrade Digital announces a new 1TB CFexpress card capable of transfer speeds up to a whopping 1.4GB/sec. Also announced today are three new 64GB, 128GB and 256GB UHS-II SDXC cards aimed at video shooters with write speeds up to 200MB/sec.
I was hoping that new memory card company ProGrade Digital would give photographers some good news about XQD at some point. And this simultaneously isn’t good news, but it also sort of is. ProGrade Digital have confirmed that they are not going to be pursuing the XQD memory format, which isn’t going to make some Nikon shooters happy. They are, however, working toward XQD’s successor, CFexpress.
CFexpress is backwards compatible with XQD – if the device manufacturer allows it – but with much faster transfer rates. This means that while there won’t officially be a ProGrade Digital XQD card, there should be XQD compatible storage coming at some point. That is, assuming Nikon updates the firmware in the D500, D850, D4, D4s, D5 and any other XQD bodies they may produce.
A couple of months ago, I asked all of you to email me with ideas for future blog posts. One of the suggestions that came up numerous times was the request for me to explain all the different memory card formats.
I guess that my 12 years in the industry, marketing memory cards for Lexar, makes me slightly more knowledgeable than most photographers about this subject. With that in mind, I am writing this blog post to explain the many different memory card formats, including those from the past, current card formats and what might be the card of the future.