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  • hojnikb - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    It's interesting, that they are using MLC across all the range. They could probobly easily use TLC on lower end.

    Also lack of 128GB cards is kinda dissapointing, give competition already has cards so large.
  • Rocket321 - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    On the TLC point, Transcend advertises their "high-end" SDcard models as MLC (a selling point), I'd be surprised if the standard models here are using MLC. Reply
  • Kristian Vättö - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    Samsung told me that all models are using MLC, even the Standard one. Reply
  • dylan522p - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    Because their mobile side is so truthful...... Reply
  • Kristian Vättö - Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - link

    I just got a correction from Samsung and as you guys suspected, the Standard and EVO do indeed use TLC NAND. Sorry for the confusion, the initial information we received from Samsung was incorrect but it's corrected now. Reply
  • Morawka - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    is TLC support common on eMMC Storage controllers? If it's only on a few controllers then its not practical. Reply
  • Guspaz - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    A strange limitation, that the full-sized EVO card is limited to 32GB, while the micro-sized card is 64GB. Reply
  • hojnikb - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    Could be a typo or just a sneaky way of forcing users to buy the PRO version :) Reply
  • fluxtatic - Thursday, April 10, 2014 - link

    Or just that micro SD is more flexible. Toss in a $.05 adapter and lo and behold, a standard SD card. Reply
  • jgstew - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    I like to have all the performance I can get for my DSLR. I'd love to see the Samsung PRO SD cards benchmarked against the Sandisk Extreme Pro SD cards: Reply
  • jgstew - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    The SD Card market and the USB Flash drive market might not be that interesting from a typical consumer position, but when you are wanting to buy the fastest option available, it is very hard to find reliable benchmarks and reviews of these devices. It is also very hard to find IOPS figures for these devices and not just maximum throughput. Reply
  • uhuznaa - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    An ideal environment to make a brand work. Samsung has a great reputation when it comes to hardware, and for good reasons. This is a good strategy.

    It's software and design they utterly suck at (at least for western tastes) but both don't apply to SD cards. Good move.
  • Pix2Go - Thursday, April 10, 2014 - link

    Agreed on the need for speed. I find the write speed of cards to be of far more importance in a DSLR than the read speed. Careful scrutiny of the specs of the camera will show that the buffer-to-card transfer rate has a maximum value, regardless of how fast the memory card can write. As long as the write speed of the card exceeds the write speed of the camera, you'll get maximum performance.

    I shoot RAW, with a Nikon D7000, and I'll invariably fill the (notoriously small, about 10 frame) in- camera buffer no matter the speed of memory I use. The D7000 has a max write-to-memory speed of about 26-28 MB/s. (Proof here: ) Boy how I wish that Sandisk card could cure my buffer woes - I've missed shots waiting on the camera to write to memory. Regrettably, the only real sure cure is a new camera body.
  • kyuu - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    Your perspective on SD cards seems a bit skewed, Mr. Vatto. Besides the fact that most DSLR users (or even those who use point-'n-shoots somewhat seriously) with any sort of knowledge on the subject are hardly going to go with the cheapest one or the one the sales rep recommends, cameras aren't the only use for SD cards.

    In my case, I'm specifically looking at SD cards to expand the capacity of my Dell Venue 8 Pro (and any future Windows tab). Since these aren't just going to hold media, but also run applications, performance is rather important -- random IO more than sequential, but no manufacturer rates their SD cards for random performance, it seems.

    So while you may be right that the SD card market is uninteresting for the general mass market customer, it's a little different for more knowledgable and specialized buyers (like, say, the readers of this site?).

    I also wonder why we don't see tablets with full-sized SD card slots instead of microSD; it seems like there should be room for it, and full-sized SD cards get you more space and better performance for less money.
  • hojnikb - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    Considering how "simple" eMMC controllers usually are, IOPS speeds almost always sux (especially write). Because vast majority of users only need fast sequential speeds, its kinda pointless making a controller, that will perform good with random data or even finetuning existing ones for better random speeds at a cost of sequential. Reply
  • kyuu - Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - link

    I would argue that it makes a lot of sense when you're talking about a controller for anything but a camera. Reply
  • hojnikb - Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - link

    There is a driver floating around (altough not developed anymore, so i'm not sure about win8 compatability) that pretty much solves the random write issue with sd cards or any flash media for that matter.
    It's called flashfire and was developed at the time, when EeePCs were popular (the ones with small ssds). Being very slow at random speeds (no dram and really crappy controllers) flashfire really helped with stuttering and whatnot.
  • diud - Monday, April 14, 2014 - link

    The eMMC storage in the Bay Trail Windows 8 tablets I've seen have decent random I/O: 10-20 MB/s 4K writes/reads. Better than most HDDs. Sequential speeds I've seen go as high as 170 MB/s. Reply
  • popej - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    I fully support your point of view. What really differentiate SD cards is maximum IOPS. It can be as low as 10 for a otherwise very fast card.

    I think Samsung can make good cards, I have noticed up to 600-800 write IOPS for their micro-SD.
  • micksh - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    XDA-developers users measured random IO performance. It matters because they run Android OS from SD card.
    Basically, only Sandisk class 4 and class 2 cards show good random IO speed. Note that they tested microSD cards, but I think it's likely that full SD cards will be similar.

    And for my camera I buy Sandisk Extreme Pro 95MB/s SD cards. They allow 80MB/s write speed in 16GB version. Samsung 16GB cards in this article seem to be limited to 50MB/s write speed. 32GB would be too big for me as I prefer not to hold all eggs in one basket; I have several 8 and 16GB cards.
  • kyuu - Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - link

    Geez, according to that all the fastest random IO cards have the slowest sequential. I'm not sure I want to trade one for the other -- at least not in *that* lopsided a way. Also, all the fast random cards are abysmally tiny, making them poor choices for expanding my tablet's storage space.

    Gah, you'd think there'd be enough of a market for *someone* to focus on their cards' random performance...
  • diud - Monday, April 14, 2014 - link

    I have a 32 GB Sandisk Extreme and Extreme Plus cards. The Extreme gets ~4.5/~2 MB/s random 4 K reads/writes. The Extreme Plus gets ~9.0/~2.5 MB/s random 4 K reads/writes. Sequential read speeds are close to the advertised ones on both. Sequential write speeds are about 1/2 to 2/3 the speed of reads. Reply
  • diud - Monday, April 14, 2014 - link

    Also, note that many (all?) of the current Bay Trail Windows 8 tablets are limited to max of 25 MB/s speed due to the internal bus. Here's a link to the Dell Venue 8 Pro:
  • SDR104 - Thursday, November 27, 2014 - link

    Class 6 cards perform better in Raspberry Pi than Class 4 or Class 10. There's a wiki chart around here somewhere. Reply
  • nerd1 - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    At least for serial read/write, recent SD cards are quite good (sometimes as good or even better than internal eMMC storages) Reply
  • kyuu - Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - link

    Oh certainly. The problem is that serial read/write is only fine for media. When you want to install and run applications (or, god forbid, the OS), though, the random performance becomes hugely important. Reply
  • hojnikb - Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - link

    Thats way we have ssds with proper controllers. Reply
  • hojnikb - Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - link

    Dammit not edit option
  • kpxgq - Sunday, April 13, 2014 - link

    The microSD slot in your dell venue 8 runs on a shared USB 2.0 bus. So you would be bottlenecked to about 20MB/s anyways.. Even the eMMC SSD on the venue is limited to under 20MB/s cause its also on the same bus and not on a SATA lane.. Check the benches Reply
  • diud - Monday, April 14, 2014 - link

    He has the Venue 8 Pro. The eMMC storage has sequential speeds of 160 MB/s reads and 70 MB/s writes. The SD slot is limited to 25 MB/s though. Reply
  • SDR104 - Thursday, November 27, 2014 - link

    " random IO more than sequential, but no manufacturer rates their SD cards for random performance, it seems."

    Class 6 favors random over sequential
  • kadajawi - Tuesday, July 28, 2015 - link

    I have made the experience that microSD cards are just as cheap, often times cheaper than SD cards. They are also more reliable/longer lasting. In most cases microSD cards perform really well. They are really fast. Maybe on the highest end there are faster, bigger SD cards, but I doubt many buy those. I'd rather have 2 or 3 microSD slots than one SD slot. Reply
  • scook9 - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    In the X-Ray picture above they clearly show an iPhone which is a) an Apple product in a Samsung marketing picture and b) infamous for not having expandable storage such as an SD card slot Reply
  • nerd1 - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    I bet the non-pro cards are TLC (as their last-gen cards). Some application like constant video recording still requires MLC I think. Reply
  • MrMaestro - Monday, April 07, 2014 - link

    The speed ratings Samsung have provided are, unsurprisingly, optimistic. I bought a 32GB PRO MicroSD yesterday and write speed while connected to my PC through a hub was about 15MB/sec. Not terrible by any means but nowhere near the 80MB/sec quoted in the slide above.

    Thing is, I think Samsung aren't telling the whole truth with this PR, because the package I bought gives a write speed as a much more realistic 20MB/sec. Maybe the SD are different to the Micros, and if that's the case then it should be made clear in the slide.
  • hojnikb - Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - link

    I bet you're limited by the card reader or usb hub (usb2 ?) and not the card itself. Reply
  • diud - Monday, April 14, 2014 - link

    Sounds like a reader issue. The higher speeds make use of newer communication protocols. Reply
  • ET - Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - link

    Previously Samsung had a 70MB/s read 20MB/s write card at a good price point, and that IMO was a good compromise. Now the 90MB/s will probably be quite expensive, while the 48MB/s will be significantly slower than 70MB/s. Reply
  • Anders CT - Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - link

    The SD-card needs to die. The standard mandates a horrible, unreliable, insecure and slow file-format while not specifying any kind of wear-levelling or reliabillity expectations.

    Extensible flash-storage is highly useful and much needed, but the prevalence of a shoddy standard makes stands in the way of full industry support.
  • SDR104 - Thursday, November 27, 2014 - link

    Lightning-UFD? :) death to SD Reply
  • shadowjk - Tuesday, April 08, 2014 - link

    Generally speaking, older cards around 2008-2009 era were faster in terms of IOPS thanks to their smaller erase block size, and slower in sequential due to having slower nand. The class2 cards had better IOPS than class 6, because in the class 6 they striped multiple nand dies together for sequential write speed boost, but at the same time effective trippled the erase block size.

    Today, there are a few cards that are "quick", compared to the typical 1 IOPS of most cards. Yes, that's 1, one, without the k expected from ssd.

    Personally I've found Sandisk Extreme MicroSDHC, the 45M/s version (the 90M/s is again a magnitude slower at random) fast, Samsung Pro MicroSDHC (the old one before this announcement), and A-data ultra high speed microsdhc. The latter is actually advertised as having higher iops and will benefit apps-on-sd usecase. A-data card is the fastest in terms of iops that I've found so far, however it's pretty fragile, things like an unexpected powerloss, reboot, or card eject will completely and utterly throw your data into a random disarray, though the card itself continues working as before if you give it new filesystem.

    Sandisk Ultra Android edition deserves a special mention, while it's not in the same magnitude class as the above 3, it's a less expensive option that doesn't entirely fall flat on its face if you do any kind of non-sequential access.

    Be careful with benchmarking too, any of the aboive (and most likely also other cards based on the same platform) have a tendency to reach their steady-state performance approximately after 1.2 crystalbenchmark runs with default settings.
    They also effectively fix their perfirmance if you throw a few gigs of sequential writes at them, which is handy, as benchmark software tend to do that at the very start. After heavy random i/o the cards also run slower in sequential mode until they get themselves sorted internally.
    The difference between burst mode and steady state performance varies, but somewhere around factor 10-1000 difference. But hey, if a regular card does 1 iops, a fancy card does 300 iops "fresh" and 15 iops steady-state, that's still 1500% improvement!

    Kingston got bad rep for switch-and-bait with their SSD, and comments on here appeared shocked and surprised that kingston didn't learn from OCZ. I was not at all surprised at this, as it's something they do consistently and repeatedly with their SD cards. They can be tosh nand with kingston controller (which is utter garbage), samsung nand with toshiba controller, or any other combination of known and unknown controllers and nand.. They will also buy ghost shift SDs, complete with incorrect reproduction of their own logo on the card, put them in real kingston retail packaging, and push it through their retail channels.

    It's hard to review cards, as even reputable companies like Sandisk will use the same branding for different products. Luckily they do change SKUs when the product changes, however they also have different SKU/product number for the same product sold in a different packaging, through different channels, or in different countries. The "Sandisk Ultra MicroSDHC" has gone through about 9 generations of technology by now, and a few hundred SKUs. The previous gen has performance properties nothing like the current one, but it's easy to buy either, as they are still both being sold, though under different sku.

    Kingston as mentioned before, is a pure lottery. Not saying you can't buy a good kingston card, just that you have absolutely no idea what you'll get.

    Transcend and Integral have some limited marketing material available for "Industrial" cards. One major selling point is "BOM Control", I take it to mean that you can pay them extra and they promise that every card of your order made on that day, will be made from the same components.

    When "It's not made out of random crap collected from street vendors in Shenzen" has become a marketable selling point, you know the SD card market is a total chaotic wild wild west.

    SD Boring? Hardly. Almost impossible to sanely review? Yes. You'd probably have to more or less ignore the vendors without their own fab, I guess that leaves you samsung and sandisk/toshiba. Maybe this is why so few sites attempt it, and even fewer sites do it in a manner anywhere near approaching a proper review.
  • mthink - Wednesday, April 09, 2014 - link

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  • mthink - Wednesday, April 09, 2014 - link


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  • mthink - Wednesday, April 09, 2014 - link

    good Reply
  • Morawka - Wednesday, April 16, 2014 - link

    Where can we buy ? these still arent on 3 weeks later after release Reply
  • rtraister - Friday, January 01, 2016 - link

    i purchased a samsung 32 EVO card in Singapore a few months ago. It has gone bad and I am unable to reformat it or do anoythng with it. I am not in Thailand so obviousliy I can not return the card to singaport. I am not impressed with the quality of samsung prodiucts these days they seem to be slipping compared to quality in past years. I am thinking of changing from Samsun Note 4 to the Apple. seems like a good move given all the problems with Samsung and the Android/ Google system. Reply

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