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Best CF Memory Cards For Cameras – Full Buying Guide


What’s a camera without a good memory card? Buying a proper storage system is just as important as any other piece of gear you’ll ever own, because that’s where all of your photographs will be stored at!

You definitely do not want to see your memory card fail on you at an important shooting (better yet, never). Buying from cheap, unknown brands will only hurt you in the long run! Invest in a good card and you are good for many years to come.

Here’s a list of the best CF memory cards on the market (price/performance), but first, let’s take a look at all the important stuff.

Memory Storage – How Many Photographs/Videos

The main advantage of digital cameras over film is that the amount of shots we can take is abnormally larger. You can have thousands of shots on one card, delete them all and shoot all over again, while you can only take 36 shots with a film camera (not such a bad thing for learning though).

Let’s use a 12 megapixel cameras as a way to determine how much storage you will need.

4GB – Save up to 1,000 photographs. Great for those who don’t shoot/record videos that often.

8GB – This is the perfect choice for most of the cameras today! Up to 2,000 shots and over 1 hour of videos.

16GB – If you shoot almost every day and never know how much you will need, it’s always good to buy a little bit more than “recommended”.

32GB – Budget wise, these aren’t the best if you’re a hobby photographer. Buy only if you are serious about video recording.

If you are going to shoot in RAW, forget about 4GB and just get the most you can afford.

Speed and Writing Performance

A lot of people make the mistake of buying a camera that can take plenty of pictures in one second, and then a memory card that can’t even keep up with such speed. This is also important for videos!

  • 266x – 40MB/s
  • 400x – 60MB/s
  • 600x – 90MB/s

Simply put, if you often find yourself shooting in the continuous mode you will need a camera with fast writing speeds. 266x is great for cameras with ~5fps and HD video, but go with faster ones if you do more than that. A SanDisk 8GB card with 400x speed is perfect for almost everyone!

Best Brands

Sandisk, Lexar, Kingston and Trascend are the only ones you should consider buying from. I learned my lesson buying a super cheap card that died only a couple of weeks later. Luckily it was during my first few weeks of owning a DSLR, so I didn’t lose any good photographs.

Stick to Sandisk and Lexar if you want nothing but the best.

Best CF Memory Cards



As I wrote above, this is great for cameras with less than 12 megapixels.

Buy SanDisk Extreme 4 GB – 266x


lexar-cfI own a couple of 8GB memory cards, and recommend the same to you! Start with one if you know that’s all you need, but it’s great to have a back up. Maybe one will fail, and you can at least keep some of the files.

Buy SanDisk Extreme 8 GB – 400x

Buy Lexar Professional 8GB – 800x


sandisk-16gbIf all you do is take pictures, then a 16GB card might be what you’re looking for. You also save a little money compared to buying 2 x 8GB!

Buy SanDisk Extreme 16 GB – 400x

Buy Lexar Professional 16GB – 800x


lexar-32gbWe’re getting closer to prices of cheap lenses! Buy only if you use a camera with 24+ megapixels, and can’t risk not having enough storage.

Buy SanDisk Extreme 32 GB – 400x

Buy Lexar Professional 32GB – 800x

All of the links above are from Amazon, which also happens to be the most popular store online! Purchasing through our links allows us to maintain the blog and keep publishing new content, and you get the exact same low prices!

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