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What speed and/or Class card do you use for your memory card?

What speed and/or Class card do you use in your mobile device?

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  • Total voters
    35
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riahc3

Senior Member
Oct 28, 2009
1,810
234
Hey

Im sorta "hell bent" on getting a 32GB microSD Class 10 card ( http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=1031312 ) but they are very limited to find. I want a Class 10 because of data transfer and the snapping of pictures/video taking is alot quicker.

I just want to know what class did you get, for what purpose, and what do you use your mobile device most (taking pictures, internet, calling, etc).

Just so everyone knows (just in case):
The Speed Class Rating is the official unit of speed measurement for SD Cards, defined by the SD Association. The Class number represents a multiple of 8 Mbits/s (1 MB/s), and meets the least sustained write speeds for a card in a fragmented state.
 
Last edited:

Seiphr

Member
Apr 20, 2010
8
0
London
Hey,

I was really keen on getting a class 10 32Gb too, but they are very expensive. In then end I opted for a 16Gb class 10 as Play.com had them on offer a month or so ago. I got a sandisk one. Just had a look for a link, but I don't think they have them now.

Guess you could get it anywhere though. I paid £15 including delivery.

I've done a couple of measurements and it's definitely performing at class 10 speeds. I have an HD2 running an Android Gingerbread SD build and the speed has been more than adequate.

My use is mostly internet, texts and calls. I have done some video/photo stuff since getting the card and it's definitely fast enough.

I used to have a class 6 PNY 8Gb one in there and it's a hell of an improvement, especially now I'm on an SD build. The only thing I would say is android takes a fair while to do it's 'preparing SD card' business when I turn the phone on, but no other issues to report. the new card seems to have helped with the hang issues on installing market apps too, which is nice.

Also - did a defrag on it with Mydefrag (beautiful tool!), which seems to have helped too.

Hope that helps!
 

zarathustrax

Senior Member
Aug 29, 2007
1,517
190
SouthSide of Chicago
I'm currently using 2 32GB Sandisk cards... one is marked class 2, one is marked class 4, but both their average write speeds are pretty similar. They could accurately be marked as class 6.

But really, the class is not important to me. When it comes to choosing a card to use in my phone, I look for cards with quick access times and fast random read and write speeds. Class ratings are really only important when the cards are going to be used in a digital camera or be used as a flash storage drive where you will be transferring large files back and forth.

When it comes to cell phones, a card that can quickly access files and can read/write to many different parts of the card quickly is much more important than a card that can write sequentially fast. You may be able to take large pictures with the camera more quickly with a higher class card, but many cards sacrifice their random access speeds to get that high sequential write speed. This can cause lags and performance loss when running apps or system files off the higher class cards.

The best cards to generally use in cell phones is a class 2 or 4. Many class 6 may perform well, too. There may even be class 10 cards that don't sacrifice that random access speeds. Quality and brand are generally much more important than class to get good access speeds and random read/write speeds.

I really think there needs to be a new rating system for access speeds and random speeds. In general, the lower class cards have better random access speeds, but that's not always the case. There are plenty of class 2 and 4 cards that have terrible random access times, and many class 6 and even 10 that still have great random access. Unfortunately, there's no way to know how a card rates in these areas until you actually test it.

I've always had good results from Sandisk cards... and terrible results from Kingston.

Hopefully, since WP7 requires cards used with it to have good random access speeds, we might start seeing some lines of microSD cards that rate these speeds.

But for now, if you're using the card with wp7, or running android off the card, or running apps or other system files off the card, you will generally have better results with high-quality lower-class cards. I have only been using Class 2 and 4 Sandisk recently. Hopefully a new class and rating system is created for using these cards with smartphones. We are using them more and more for the purpose of internal phone memory... especially windows phone 7, and even with android you see more people making partitions on their cards to use as internal memory to run app and system files. We need a better rating system for cards, cause the current class rating is pretty much meaningless for smartphone purposes.
 

riahc3

Senior Member
Oct 28, 2009
1,810
234
I still use my stock 8GB card I got with my phone. My main use is pictures and apps. Its a class 2.

Sent from my HTC Inspire 4G
XDA Developers Premium App

Thanks but vote :)

Also - did a defrag on it with Mydefrag (beautiful tool!), which seems to have helped too.

Defraging a flash based storage device does nothing and actually makes its lifetime smaller.

I'm currently using 2 32GB Sandisk cards... one is marked class 2, one is marked class 4, but both their average write speeds are pretty similar. They could accurately be marked as class 6.

But really, the class is not important to me. When it comes to choosing a card to use in my phone, I look for cards with quick access times and fast random read and write speeds. Class ratings are really only important when the cards are going to be used in a digital camera or be used as a flash storage drive where you will be transferring large files back and forth.

When it comes to cell phones, a card that can quickly access files and can read/write to many different parts of the card quickly is much more important than a card that can write sequentially fast. You may be able to take large pictures with the camera more quickly with a higher class card, but many cards sacrifice their random access speeds to get that high sequential write speed. This can cause lags and performance loss when running apps or system files off the higher class cards.

The best cards to generally use in cell phones is a class 2 or 4. Many class 6 may perform well, too. There may even be class 10 cards that don't sacrifice that random access speeds. Quality and brand are generally much more important than class to get good access speeds and random read/write speeds.

I really think there needs to be a new rating system for access speeds and random speeds. In general, the lower class cards have better random access speeds, but that's not always the case. There are plenty of class 2 and 4 cards that have terrible random access times, and many class 6 and even 10 that still have great random access. Unfortunately, there's no way to know how a card rates in these areas until you actually test it.

I've always had good results from Sandisk cards... and terrible results from Kingston.

Hopefully, since WP7 requires cards used with it to have good random access speeds, we might start seeing some lines of microSD cards that rate these speeds.

But for now, if you're using the card with wp7, or running android off the card, or running apps or other system files off the card, you will generally have better results with high-quality lower-class cards. I have only been using Class 2 and 4 Sandisk recently. Hopefully a new class and rating system is created for using these cards with smartphones. We are using them more and more for the purpose of internal phone memory... especially windows phone 7, and even with android you see more people making partitions on their cards to use as internal memory to run app and system files. We need a better rating system for cards, cause the current class rating is pretty much meaningless for smartphone purposes.

Great post as in the other thread :) I may have to go with a Class 4 (as there are even less Class 6) card as it will also lower the price in my budget. Cant have everything...
 

ganns1980

Senior Member
Nov 30, 2009
228
2
I got a good deal on a Samsung 16 gb class 2, figured I'd go for it because I don't really use my phone for too much HD recording :). However, it consistently benchmarks at class 6 speeds.

Yes, I did vote :p
 

riahc3

Senior Member
Oct 28, 2009
1,810
234
Thanks for all the votes :)

It seems since Im on a budget, Im going to have to go with a Class 4 even though it hurts as I (thought) a Class 10 was needed. I just hope I dont notice it when taking pictures.

SanDisk without a doubt right?
 

zarathustrax

Senior Member
Aug 29, 2007
1,517
190
SouthSide of Chicago
Im tempted to make a thread about this as well :p

I just like to make sure what I buy before I do it. Makes me more sure about what Im buying.


Thanks to everyone who has helped me in these 2 (well problably soon 3) threads. I appreciate it :)

Definitely Sandisk....if getting 32GB, look for model # ending in B35A or B35N. I think that's the one I got. I'll double check tonight and let you know. It was listed as class 2 when I ordered it, but it was marked class 4 when I got it, and it had sequential write speeds equal to class 6 (6MB/Sec). I also have a 32GB with model # ending in A11M... this one was mark class 2, but I think newer ones are also marked class 4. Not sure if the newer ones marked class 4 have better performance than the ones marked class 2, but mine which is marked class 2 could also easily be marked class 6 and be as fast in sequential write speeds as most class 6 of other brands... but the class 2 A11M is not quite as fast as the class 4 B36A that I have in both sequential write/read and random read/write & access times. But like I said, the newer A11Ms marked as class 4 may have better performance than the ones marked class 2, and the performance difference between my 2 32GB Sandisks is not very big.... both are VERY good cards in overall performance.
I got both my cards from provantage, I believe.
 

stumo5

Member
Jan 19, 2010
19
1
The best cards to generally use in cell phones is a class 2 or 4. Many class 6 may perform well, too. There may even be class 10 cards that don't sacrifice that random access speeds. Quality and brand are generally much more important than class to get good access speeds and random read/write speeds.
Hey zarathustrax, I'm maintaining a microSD benchmark results thread and we have quite a few results now, and it backs up everything you are saying. The 32GB Class2 Sandisk (when it was available) owns everything on random writes. Followed by the 32 Class4 Sandisk.

By comparison, a 32GB Class10 Lexar is benching 350 times slower for random writes than the Sandisk. And yet only offers a doubling of sequential write speed.

Additionally, I maintain an in-phone microSD benchmark thread too. But the results are pretty much cached out by whatever ROM you are running on your phone. So slow cards become much faster, and fast cards become much slower. In the end we found that all cards were performing at around the same speeds. Its only when you changed ROMs would you see a change in in-phone card speed.

Out of phone benchmark link...
http://forums.whirlpool.net.au/forum-replies.cfm?t=1582172

In-phone benchmark link...
http://forums.whirlpool.net.au/forum-replies.cfm?t=1468705
 
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riahc3

Senior Member
Oct 28, 2009
1,810
234
Thanks. Im going to read your links now and see if there are model numbers and get some cards (I should have already bought the card before yesterday)

Thanks again stumo5
 

riahc3

Senior Member
Oct 28, 2009
1,810
234
Holy ****!

I have found one that has a Sandisk; The only problem is that on the webpage it says that it is a SDSDQM-032G-B35 but the picture shows a 2 written on the card, meaning Class 2. I pretty much refuse going from a Class 10 to a Class 2 and besides the price is 95....

Im going to call and get the model number anyhow....
 

riahc3

Senior Member
Oct 28, 2009
1,810
234
Kingston 60 bucks
Sandisk 95 bucks

Man how they like to **** consumers in the ass :( Anyways, he said that what was shown to him was divided by categories and he couldnt tell me the exact model number as it just showed him prices and who supplied it but I rather pay on eBay a Lexar Class 10 at 96 rather than a Sandisk Class 2/4 at 95.

More comparisons: A Sandisk Class 2 32GB at 89 bucks on eBay.

I mean I really have to juggle and ask my self: Is it really worth it? Being on a slight budget, Im not sure.

stumo5 - Has anyone done tests in your microsd exam on TopRAM? I might get them at the end as the prices are just rapist ( :p ). zarathustrax, the price doesnt justify to me at the end, unless I will notice it.

My main dilema was how pictures were going to be taken as I imagine there will be a lag in picture when I press it and when it is actually taken. Also file transfers and installing/running applications from the SD card. Your explanation was great zarathustrax but Im not sure if its going to be worth the price.

My first smartphone (Nokia E70) I went with Kingston but it surprises me in a way that people talk so bad about Kingston in the flash memory card area.
 

MacaronyMax

Senior Member
Aug 27, 2008
13,722
581
Oxford
I'm currently using the 8gb one that came with my Desire Z although I have a class 6 8Gb somewhere that I bought but I haven't felt the need to swap yet for some reason I can't tell a difference :cool:
 

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    The best cards to generally use in cell phones is a class 2 or 4. Many class 6 may perform well, too. There may even be class 10 cards that don't sacrifice that random access speeds. Quality and brand are generally much more important than class to get good access speeds and random read/write speeds.
    Hey zarathustrax, I'm maintaining a microSD benchmark results thread and we have quite a few results now, and it backs up everything you are saying. The 32GB Class2 Sandisk (when it was available) owns everything on random writes. Followed by the 32 Class4 Sandisk.

    By comparison, a 32GB Class10 Lexar is benching 350 times slower for random writes than the Sandisk. And yet only offers a doubling of sequential write speed.

    Additionally, I maintain an in-phone microSD benchmark thread too. But the results are pretty much cached out by whatever ROM you are running on your phone. So slow cards become much faster, and fast cards become much slower. In the end we found that all cards were performing at around the same speeds. Its only when you changed ROMs would you see a change in in-phone card speed.

    Out of phone benchmark link...
    http://forums.whirlpool.net.au/forum-replies.cfm?t=1582172

    In-phone benchmark link...
    http://forums.whirlpool.net.au/forum-replies.cfm?t=1468705