You can use a microSD card with an adapter as a memory card for your camera instead of a traditional SD card. However, it’s not usually recommended, as MicroSD cards are normally slower, and the adapter can lead to performance loss.
My name is Caleb, and I have years of experience using SD cards regularly as a photographer. They’ve been an essential item for me as the main way of getting my pictures from camera to computer.
In this article, I’ll talk about using MicroSD cards with cameras. I’ll go over how viable it is, some reasons you might want to reconsider, and the specs to look for if you decide to use one of these cards for photography.
If you’ve got a MicroSD card lying around, and you’re wondering just how good it would be for photography, read on for the complete breakdown.
The Cons of Using a MicroSD Card with an Adapter in a Camera
Yes, you can use a MicroSD card with an adapter in a camera. You usually won’t notice any immediate differences compared to using a normal SD card.
With that being said, there are also some downsides that might be less obvious at first glance. Like all types of tech, SD cards have different performance levels. MicroSD cards lag behind their full-sized counterparts in this area.
Slower Write Speed
Write speed refers to how fast your SD card can read and write data. Assuming you want to shoot pictures quickly, one after the other, this is a pretty crucial spec. Let’s say that, for example, each picture is about 20MB in size.
If it takes your card seconds to write files that large, you probably won’t have much luck at rapid-fire shooting.
Many MicroSD cards are designed with a slower write speed, which is one of the reasons they trend cheaper. But even if your card isn’t slow, you must consider the adapter.
An adapter adds an extra step between the photo being created on your camera and saved on the card, which can reduce speed compared to one that doesn’t require an adapter.
What SD Card to Buy for Photography
If you’re looking for a memory card for photography, the best option is a full-sized one with the right class. SD cards are divided into classes to measure their performance, and which class you need depends on your preferences as a photographer.
For most casual photographers who aren’t shooting in especially high quality, a Class 10 SD card will do just fine. These cards are named as such because they can write data at 10MB per second.
On the other hand, more serious photographers with large image sizes may want to go for a UHS Class 3 SD card, which can write up to 30MB per second.
Photographers using the highest level gear, or those shooting high-resolution videos, should take it a step further and use V60 or V90 class SD cards, which can write 60MB and 90MB per second, respectively.
Watch this video to learn more about SD card specifications:
Here are some of the most asked questions about SD card performance.
Do SD Card Adapters Affect Speed?
To put it simply, it depends on the exact model. While high-performance SD card adapters do exist, the consensus is that they should be avoided if you care about speed. After all, an adapter adds another step between your camera and your memory card.
What is the Difference Between an SD Card Reader and an Adapter?
An SD card reader is a device that lets you view and interact with the contents of an SD card without needing an SD card slot. An adapter, on the other hand, adds further compatibility to a MicroSD card, making it usable with the same devices as a normal-sized card.
Will a Faster SD Card Speed Up My Camera?
Upgrading your SD card can help the speed of your camera, assuming it has a faster write speed than your previous card. If you have a high-performance camera, you may need a fast SD card to maximize shooting speed.
You can use a MicroSD card with an adapter in your camera, but I don’t recommend it if you’re looking for speed. Even if you have a fast MicroSD card, the adapter adds an unnecessary step between your camera and memory card, which can lead to worse performance.
What class of memory card do you use for photography? Let us know in the comments!