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Memory card format proposed

Bigger and faster
Tue Nov 30 2010, 10:56

STORAGE MEDIA MAKERS Sandisk, Sony, and Nikon are prepping a high-speed memory card format with up to 2TB capacities.

The companies are working together on the format, running their proposals past the Compactflash Association (CFA) and the international standards organisation to get the format signed off.

Sandisk, Sony, and Nikon are putting the specifications for the new format together to meet the demands of professional photographers. However, with memory cards getting used in nearly everything these days, the format has the potential to be used in a wide range of electronic gadgets including smartphones, tablets and computers.

At the moment, the Compactflash Association's CF6.0 has a maximum transfer rate of only 167MB/sec. That speed bump was released just this month so Sandisk, Sony, and Nikon's proposed transfer rate of 500MB/sec per second is a huge jump. If it does get signed off by the CFA and international standards organisation, the format will have the jump on much slower and smaller competitors, including Sony's own proprietary memory stock format, which ties users in to buying Sony branded hardware.

The proposed specifications will reach up to 500MB/sec by using a PCI Express interface rather than Compactflash's current PATA interface. Some of Sony's own memory formats have the same theoretical maximum capacity of 2TB but not at the speeds proposed by this format.

"This ultra high-speed media format will enable further evolution of hardware and imaging applications, and widen the memory card options available to CompactFlash users such as professional photographers," said the chairman of the CFA board, Shigeto Kanda.

"This next generation format is expected to be widely adapted to various products, including those other than high-end DSLRs." µ


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