42 First tests
Photography News | Issue 36 | absolutephoto.com
Accessories First tests We get our hands on the
latest kit and share our first impressions – so you know whether or not to add it to your wish list
Reviews by Will Cheung and Kingsley Singleton
SamsungEVOPlus 256GBMicroSDcard £174.99
Speed Class 10, UHS-1 Features
Waterproof, temperature proof, X-ray proof and magnet proof Read time Up to 95MB/s Write times Up to 90MB/s Operating temperature -25°C to 85°C Durability 10,000 mating cycles Capacity 256GB Dimensions 15x11x1mm Weight 0.5g Contact samsung.com
With high-resolution still cameras, 4K-capable products including drones and action cameras, as well as memory-hungry portable devices, the need for large capacity memory cards is greater than ever before. The latest Samsung EVO Plus MicroSD boasts a capacity of 256GB making it the biggest card in its class. Its price of £174.99 includes an SD card adapter. The 256GB card joins the EVO range already comprising 16, 32, 64 and 128GB sizes. To cram such a huge capacity into a MicroSD card is a considerable technological feat but Samsung is at the cutting edge of memory card technology. This card features the latest 48-cell layer three-bit MLC V-NAND technology to maximise read and write speeds, which are claimed to be 95MB/s and 90MB/s respectively, and they match the performance of Samsung’s PRO plus cards. As always, claimed speed and what you see in practice depends on the kit used. This MicroSD card also boasts four-proof protection too so should
deliver reliable performance even in adverse situations. So it is waterproof to IPX7 standard which means it will survive water immersion for 30 minutes at one-metre depth and temperature proof working within the range of -25°C to 85°C. The other two proofs are X-ray and magnetic so will be fine through airport X-ray machines and should you manage to have an MRI scan with the card stashed on your person, your data will survive that too. I tried the card in various devices including a Nikon D810, a Fujifilm X-T2 and a Canon EOS80D (all via the supplied SD adapter). To assess its full potential I tested the card using the Blackmagic Disk Speed Test app on my Mac Mini. Here, I got a write speed of 65MB/s and a read speed of 87.3MB/s, both good figures. For a practical test, I transferred 1GB of data to and from the computer. This gave read and write times of 14.2 seconds and 17.8 seconds respectively which translates to around 70MB/s and 56MB/s, which is good.
The card also emerged unscathed having spent 1.5 hours – accidentally – in my washing machine (40°C, synthetics cycle, no fab con). In the D810 with its 36-megapixel resolution, the 256GB has capacity for 3100 Raw shots so plenty enough for the family barbecue or even a big
wedding. Shooting continuously with this camera got me 25 Raws before the camera/card even had to pause for breath. I tried the same tests with a random selection of SD cards and the Samsung card matched or bettered all the others that I tried. WC
To cram such a huge capacity into a MicroSD card is a considerable technological feat
True, at £174.99 this Samsung EVO 256GB card is a considerable investment. But then you do get a huge capacity, whether you are shooting stills or 4K video. It performs well too and during this test I had no issues at all with card failure or lost files – even after 1.5 hours in the washing machine.
Pros Huge capacity, performance, impressive reliability Cons No cons, but not everyone needs such high capacity
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