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FORUMS Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon Digital Cameras 
Thread started 16 Feb 2013 (Saturday) 11:55
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POLL: "Have you ever had a memory card fail (don't include physical damage)?"
Yes - CF card
Yes - SD card

187 voters, 187 votes given (1 choice only choices can be voted per member)). VOTING IS FOR MEMBERS ONLY.
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Have you ever had a memory card fail?

Senior Member
417 posts
Joined Jul 2010
Location: Vancouver, BC
Feb 17, 2013 11:05 |  #16

Yes, a brand new Kingston 16GB that failed after the first 100 or so shots and a few videos. Wasnt too impressed with that.

7D - 100-400 L, Sigma 28, Sigma 17-70 2.8-4

Senior Member
279 posts
Gallery: 18 photos
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Joined Dec 2004
Location: Pretoria, South Africa
Feb 17, 2013 11:53 |  #17

Over the last 10 years, and around 1.5 mil images (shot motorsport professionally for a while) I have never had a card (I only use CF) fail while in use. I did have one Kingston Pro fail right out of the packaging (would not even format) but never any CF cards in use.

2,713 posts
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Joined Jul 2007
Feb 17, 2013 12:03 |  #18

No failed memory cards that I can think of but I had a thumb drive fail. Based on the same tech and that was a 256MB, so you can tell that was a while ago. Sandisk replaced it.

http://www.colorblinde​ (external link)
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Cream of the Crop
10,310 posts
Likes: 123
Joined Aug 2007
Location: San Jose, California
Feb 17, 2013 12:20 |  #19

I currently use fourteen 8GB CF (mix of Sandisk & Lexar), a couple 16GB CF (sandisk)... also have several SD (PNY, Sandisk, ?), plus probably a dozen or more older, slower 2GB CF (Sony, Lexar, Sandisk), and a half dozen older 1GB and smaller CF (Lexar, Sandisk)....

Used to use some other mem cards... Some half dozen or so 8MB, 16MB & 32MB SmartMedia (yes, that's MB, not GB) cards with an Oly digicam bought around 1997. Gave the camera and all it's accessories to my sister and brother-in-law years ago... They still use it with the same memory cards. The original SmartMedia card reader crapped out earlier this year and they had some trouble, but eventually found one compatible with their more recent Windows OS. They use the camera for eBay items and inventory photos for their business.

Never had a card fail, in fifteen or more years shooting digital (9 years shooting DSLRs, probably close to a half million images with those).

I have screwed up and removed a CF card too quickly (from a 30D), corrupting files on it. Was able to recover about 2/3 of the images (using Lexar Image Rescue).

I also had some files corrupted during download, transfering via a card reader that was plugged into a USB hub... Plugged the reader directly into the computer and that solved the problem completely.

Alan Myers (external link) "Walk softly and carry a big lens."
5DII, 7DII, 7D, M5 & others. 10-22mm, Meike 12/2.8,Tokina 12-24/4, 20/2.8, EF-M 22/2, TS 24/3.5L, 24-70/2.8L, 28/1.8, 28-135 IS (x2), TS 45/2.8, 50/1.4, Sigma 56/1.4, Tamron 60/2.0, 70-200/4L IS, 70-200/2.8 IS, 85/1.8, Tamron 90/2.5, 100/2.8 USM, 100-400L II, 135/2L, 180/3.5L, 300/4L IS, 300/2.8L IS, 500/4L IS, EF 1.4X II, EF 2X II. Flashes, strobes & various access. - FLICKR (external link)

3,312 posts
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Joined Nov 2003
Location: Woodlands, MB, Canada
Feb 17, 2013 12:24 |  #20

I had a Lexar die on me.. It was a 512 Megabyte CF card (shows how long ago it was) :)

2,806 posts
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Joined Oct 2007
Location: Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
Feb 17, 2013 12:25 |  #21

Only those knockoff-brand microSD cards from eBay. I figure I must have bent them with my sausage fingers - though they're flimsy enough to begin with.

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Senior Member
665 posts
Likes: 2
Joined Feb 2008
Location: The O.C.
Feb 17, 2013 12:29 as a reply to  @ Colorblinded's post |  #22

not yet. about 20 cards over 10 years or so, all off-brands.

Canon EOS M | G7 X | S90

159 posts
Joined Aug 2012
Feb 17, 2013 12:29 |  #23

Its pretty standard practice to not let cards get old as they will fail, its not a question of 'if', its just a matter of time. Camera manufacturers will tell you to use new and fresh cards in the cameras, not just for reliability but for speed. I've had a handful of CF cards fail over the years as they have aged. I have always been able to use image recovery software to get most of the images back, and then the card goes in the trash. I use and abuse my equipment though and shoot well over 100,000 images per year.

Staff Photographer - Hearst Corporation - Newspaper Division

Senior Member
643 posts
Likes: 4
Joined Dec 2011
Location: Western MA
Feb 19, 2013 03:45 |  #24

11 years of digital photography, 5 cameras (1 at a time), all Sandisk cards (15 or so, I'd guess), never a failure. That's why I use nothing but Sandisk. Sandisk for all my USB thumb drives, too!

No, I am not a Sandisk employee/salesman/repr​esentative.

"Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity." General George S Patton, Jr 1885-1945

1,283 posts
Likes: 2
Joined Jul 2007
Location: Edinburgh, Lothian
Feb 19, 2013 04:22 |  #25

I've had a CF card fail right out of the 'box' - a Fujifilm 1Gb x20 card bought in desperation on a distillery photography trip. I ran out of memory (yeah, yeah . . . I know) and bought the only card available in a small Highland pharmacy. I formatted before use but still lost important images. I binned the card.

I have a touching faith in Sandisk; never had a single failure in 10 years.

~ Wallace
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Cream of the Crop
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Joined Nov 2008
Location: "...just south of the 23rd Paralell..."
Feb 19, 2013 04:34 |  #26

I had the weirdest thing happen to a Sandisk 512 card once...
I dropped it and somehow everything changed to MS Dos files.
There wasn't any thing of any consequence on it so I just reformatted the card and it was fine.
I have no idea what happened, how or why.

Regards, Phil
2019 South Australian Country Press Assoc Sports Photo of the Year - Runner Up
2018 South Australian Country Press Assoc Sports Photo of the Year
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Finallist - 2014 NT Media Awards
"A bad day at the race track is better than a good day in the office"

Cream of the Crop
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Joined Dec 2010
Location: Repps cum Bastwick, Gt Yarmouth, Norfolk, UK.
Feb 19, 2013 08:43 |  #27

Every SD card I have had has failed within 6 months. I still have the original CF card I got with my 300D plus 4 or 5 others. I did have one (Fuji 8Gb) CF card fail right out of the box. It formatted OK but had problems writing and then reading. Fortunatly I got the data back off it as I had no choice but to use it at the time. Got a refund for it no problem.

Alan (external link)

Scott ­ M
3,350 posts
Gallery: 100 photos
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Joined May 2008
Location: Michigan / South Carolina
Feb 19, 2013 09:29 |  #28

I had a CF card fail several years ago with a 40D while on a Hawaiian vacation. It was either a Transcend or Kingston (cannot remember that far back), but I was able to cover all the files. I've never had an issue with any other CF card on my numerous dSLR's.

I've never had a dSLR that uses SD cards. My wife's p&s does, but that is not a high use camera.

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Dj ­ R
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Location: Philaburbia
Nov 06, 2013 10:47 |  #29

this is a great thread and hopefully it will help a few people save a TON of stress.
However, the topic isn't going to help enough people, so I may create a thread based on: "dual slot body users", so it gets to the masses.

I shoot events (including weddings) but mostly portrait sessions. I feel that it's very important to assign all images to both cards, using dual slots.

If someone is shooting sporting events and fps is critical, it's up to them, b/c apparently (on the Canon 5DmarkIII at least) shooting to the extra slot (with an SD) could slow down your camera.

For people who are NOT shooting sports:
1. if you're passionate about your photos USE BOTH CARD SLOTS.
2. if you're a professional (and all that really means is, are you getting paid for your work), USE BOTH CARD SLOTS or you're stupid.

#2 sounds harsh but think about it this way....
It's like not locking your car doors. You come out of the restaurant, someone has gone inside your car and stole your laptop.

You have two slots. Even if it's unlikely a card will fail, who cares, use them both. It's unlikely someone is going to try to open your car door, right, so why lock your car doors? Because it's easy. Wouldn't you feel STUPID if your card failed, and you hadn't spend the $50 on a card?

I shot a wedding last month, I was a second shooter for this gig. At the end of the reception, I gave the girl my 64gb extreme sandisk card.
She called me the next day with the horrifying news that the computer told her that my card was corrupt.
I told her that I'd meet her halfway with my backup card - there was 5 seconds of silence, then she told me that she loved me. We've never held hands before.

I met her, gave her my sd card, went home and put the cf in my personal card reader, no issues. It may have been a hiccup with her reader or computer.
But who cares. Imagine if it wasn't a hiccup?

Buy the cheap insurance

BAG Reviews, master list!
Canon shooter

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Joined Apr 2012
Location: Anacortes, WA
Nov 06, 2013 10:58 as a reply to  @ Dj R's post |  #30

I had a Transcend 16 Gb card fail after about 1 year in my 5D2. They replaced the card fast however. Would love to have two memory card slots just in case.

Canon 5D IV|16-35mm f4L| 100 mm f2.8L Macro | 24-70 mm f2.8LII |Yongnuo YN568EX|YN622c|Flickr (external link)

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Have you ever had a memory card fail?
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