Memory - going cheap!

Shooting in both RAW and jpeg format consumes a LOT of space of my memory cards, particularly when the combined file size for each image is about 35MG. When I first bought my 5D Mark II, I started with a couple of 8GB cards, which would fit about 230 images. Shoot a wedding from beginning to end, a morning of portraits or a day out in a new city, and those cards fill up pretty quickly!

I had read articles about using larger compact flash cards - the 16GB, 32GB and larger cards all kinda made me nervous about "putting all of my eggs in the one basket" and risking a card failure. An old 4GB card had failed on me a couple of years ago, and while I didn't lose any photos, I chose to stay with 8GB cards.

Speaking with other photographers is always a good thing, and it's interesting to learn where others source the mundane but necessary accessories associated with digital photography. I use only Sandisk cards - and even though it was a Sandisk card that failed, I still believe it's a good brand.

I was referred to Cheap Cheaps, which as the name suggests, pretty much specialises in storage devices of all shapes and sizes. Several months ago, I decided to give a 16GB compact flash card a go, and so far it's been fine - all images present and accounted for. An empty card will fit about 445 images (including the RAW and jpeg variations). I paid about $115 for a 16GB 60MB/s CompactFlash card, and another $10 or so for shipping. Cheap Chips turns around orders really quicky - in fact my order arrived the very next day.

This week, I received my weekly newsletter from B&H Photo in the US, which said their prices on memory cards had plummetted!

I'm SO glad I checked it out, because I found the Extreme Pro version of the 16GB card for USD$65.99, which is nearly half price (and faster) than what I can get from Cheap Chips. With the Australian dollar still being so strong against the Greenback, it was worth it to stock up and pay the $30 in shipping costs.

My new collection of 16GB cards will no doubt get a thrashing during my 3.5 week trip to Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam in a couple of months. I'll have about 80GB's worth of card capacity plus my 64GB iPad, which I'm intending to use as a backup.

If you need to stock up on memory cards, check out B&H!

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