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on October 20, 2003
[Note: This review was originally posted on 20-Oct-2003 and contains an important update made on 29-Oct-2003! Be sure to read the entire review for details!]
SanDisk's 512MB SD card is by far the cheapest available. In most cases, the other cards are at least 50% more than this one.
I was curious about speed since SanDisk is known for being a bit on the slow side. This card was relatively newly released when I wanted it, so I was unable to find any good speed figures online. Therefore, I bought it anyway -- and ran the speed tests myself.
Testing on a Toshiba/AudioVox Genio e550G with Kai's Speed Test application, I ran the Write Test 5 times with the following results:
Trial #1: 263KB/Sec
Trial #2: 263KB/Sec
Trial #3: 181KB/Sec
Trial #4: 171KB/Sec
Trial #5: 196KB/Sec
Not very consistent, for some reason. I was not running any other applications at the time, so I am not sure why the fluctuation.
For comparison, here are the results using a Lexar 256MB SD card:
Trial #1: 263KB/Sec
Trial #2: 271KB/Sec
Trial #3: 279KB/Sec
Trial #4: 256KB/Sec
Trial #5: 256KB/Sec
So, at their best, the two cards seem quite comparable. It is just that the Lexar card is clearly more stable as far as speed fluctuations go.
In any case, I'm happy with it -- especially for the huge difference in price in most cases. Works for me. Plus, 5-year warranty -- just in case.
- John...
The fact that the card always performed well for the first two tests but then slowed and stayed slow until the device was reset was really bothering me, so I contacted SanDisk about it and gave them the same results that I shared here. SanDisk said that they thought the card was defective! I therefore had this card replaced (very quickly and easily by Amazon, I will add) and have just repeated my tests with the new card. Good news! The replacement card is usually faster and much more consistent than the original! It no longer slows down after the first two tests -- the results are repeatable at any time.
For comparison, here are the new figures for the 512MB SanDisk card:
Trial #1: 329KB/Sec
Trial #2: 263KB/Sec
Trial #3: 341KB/Sec
Trial #4: 279KB/Sec
Trial #5: 318KB/Sec
As you can see, the card is now performing at or above the speed of the 256MB Lexar that I had previously tested. I am now quite satisfied with this card -- it appears to be giving the same speeds or better than other cards well above this price range.
- John...
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on March 8, 2006
This is a basic SD card which is not expensive since it is not 1 gig or made by Sony and other companies with a lot of hype. Still holds more than 500 photos at the best resolution in a 5.1 Megapixel camera.

I have the Canon SD450 and the highest resolution I take pictures is 1600x1200 which turn out as outstanding prints on photo paper.

I take close to 200 photos every month. but since I download then to my computer (or IPod if I am on the road) I do not run out of memory space ever.

I weighed out my options with 1gig cards but ultimately it only means that I can take more pictures at a stretch. Look at it this way if you buy 2 512 Mb cards you have the simple flexibility of keeping your photos separate, have a backup memory card rather than buying one 1 gig card which if it fails you are stuck with no memory at all.

You can get this product for under $30 if you search well enough and find good deals. I have three of these at an avg cost of $32 each.
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on November 5, 2004
How many pictures will it store? It is the most commonly asked question from digital camera enthusiast but usually the question that is the most difficult to get a straight answer about. Well, considering I worked in the memory industry for over 7 years I can help clarify this perplexing question and do so unbiased as I have since changed industries.

The SanDisk SDSDB-512-A10 512MB Secure Digital Card, like most 512MB cards, will store on average 568 pictures when used with a 2 megapixel camera, 426 images when used with a 3 megapixel camera, 256 pictures when used with a 4 megapixel camera, 204 images when used with a 5 megapixel camera, and 160 pictures when used with a 6 megapixel camera. These numbers are based off the assumption that you are going to shoot your images at the highest quality JPEG setting available for the camera and understand that they are estimates and may be off by as much as 10 percent due to numerous factors including the complexity of the scene being shot and the compression algorithm used by your specific camera.

I truly hope this review was helpful to you in determining whether this 512MB card is the right capacity for your specific needs.
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on December 30, 2004
the people who wrote this is a "fast" card have no expertise. this is now one of the slowest cards out there, this makes a huge difference with cameras over 2 megapixels. if you are shooting with a three or four megapixel camera it will be unbearably slow.

price. please! the page shows a list price of two fifty. wow so for fifty five it must be a great deal right? no! memory prices fall like a riock and the list price is from two years ago. the listed "sale price" of fifty five is the going rate across all the competition.

Indeed sandisks own "utra II" version of their 512 sd card is sixty five dollars everywhere. the ultra II reads and writes on average seven times faster.
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on October 8, 2005
It's easy to recommend this 512MB SanDisk SD card because I've owned one for close to a year now, using it with my Treo 650 smartphone. I keep it in the phone at all times and have never experienced a problem with it. Ever.

I use it to store MP3s, short videos, eBooks, photos, even MS Word, Excel and PowerPoint files, along with a few Palm applications. It's easy to transfer files using an inexpensive Bonzai USB flash drive that I also would recommend.

Of course, this card is versatile enough to use for portable flash storage when paired with a USB reader as well as to transfer files between desktops and laptops, or between digitial cameras and computers.

I value SanDisk products for their quality and relatively low price. With larger capacity cards entering the market the 512MB (and even 1GB) models are getting less and less expensive.

SanDisk offers rebates every few months so even if you don't need a card right now, put this on your wishlist and check Amazon frequently to take advantage of even greater savings.
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on January 25, 2006
I purchased the SanDisk 512 SD card for my Kodak 7590 (5 MegaPixel) digital camera in October 2004. I've used it now for 16 months, and have never had a problem with reading or writing data to it. I've taken about 800 photos in that time, and have successfully used the card to transfer images from computer to computer and to the photolab for printing.

My only complaint is that it can be a little slow when shooting photos at larger resolutions. On the Kodak 7590, the 5 megapixel images are about 1.5-2 megabytes as high-quality JPEGs, and I find myself waiting about 3-4 seconds when taking pictures of that size. These times are, of course, much faster if I reduce the megapixels. I also like that you can easily lock this card with the little switch when taking it to a digital photo printer--no chance that they accidentally overwrite your photos.

So if you use your camera mainly for casual photos at family events, on vacation, etc., this card should be just fine. If you take a lot of quick action shots where you might need to shoot several photos in a short period of time, you may want to opt for the faster cards that are now available. But for the price, this is a great card.

IMPORTANT NOTE FOR KODAK CAMERA OWNERS: In July 2006, I purchased a SanDisk Ultra II card for my Kodak 7590, because I was hoping that it would be faster than the original SanDisk 512MB. But to my surprise, it timed exactly the same. So I emailed Kodak, and this was their response: "We appreciate your interest in high speed memory for your digital camera. Our cameras are designed to operate, write and read SD cards at set voltage speeds. Therefore, there is no advantage to using faster memory in Kodak cameras."

So if you use a Kodak dock or USB cable to transfer images to your computer, there's no advantage to paying extra for an Ultra II, so stick with the standard SanDisk. If you use a card reader to get images to your computer, then it might be worthwhile to pay a little more for the Ultra II since read and write speeds through the reader will be much faster.
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on November 15, 2005
This is an awesome card, you cant really say much it holds a nice ammount of pictures, and has a lock feature that keeps your data from being deleted. I would say use the lock feature when going on trips, i lost all my data when i accidently had my camera in my pocket and some how pressed a button by accident and delted everything. Also ive used this card to transfer data from computer to computer very good use as well. Really worth the money.
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on March 2, 2005
Hiya. I know that some people have been giving Sandisk products a hard time since they joined the market. I've never had a problem with Sandisk products since I started purchasing them a few years ago. If you own a Sony digital camera or camcorder and wanna save some cash on memory cards sandisk is where you go. I just purchased a Sandisk 512 mb sd card on ebay for forty bucks. Its perfect for the 3.2 mp Casio Exilim EX-S100 that its mated to. This card will hold 276 pics at the cameras finest resolution and 2 weeks and 1000 pics later I have no complanints. The camera writes quickly to the card and the card can transfer 500 mb of pic data to my pc in less then 8 mins (using usb 2.0 cradle connection). It hasent failed yet. I think the problem with a lot of consumers is they don't format the card in camera. Please try this as it improves the write speed greatly. Sandisk is a fine company and very reliable .
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on November 4, 2003
John gave a great review on this item, and I based my buying decision on his review. Read it if you have not yet done that, I will only add the following:
I purchased this SD card along with the Casio Exilim EX-Z4 digital camera. I had the EX-S1 with a the famous and expensive SimpleTech SD card previously, and you know what? you will practically find that both cards are functioning at the same speed and performance levels, only that you have saved US$ 100 difference between SanDisk and other branded cards including SimpleTech ... I would say that it was a good deal, and SanDisk definately sent a strong message to other manufacturers to reconsider their price points.
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on July 2, 2006
As the title suggest, this is not as much about the card. For what I used it (GPS receiver) when a card (any card) works, it works. So this review is about what happens when the card stops working like mine. It died most likely not because there was something at fault with the card but because of a power surge on my ancient Win98 machine I have connected to.

Just in case, I sent an email to Sandisk customer support. Just in case, cause I wasn't very hopeful. I knew it couldn't be repaired and I didn't even remember when and where I purchased it from. I got a prompt reply asking me to do couple of simple operations just to verify that the card is indeed dead. I did this and got another reply giving me RMA and instructions how to ship the dead card back to them at their cost. Within two weeks I got a new card back.

I am really very impressed. All my past experience in dealing with various customer support companies left me with quite negative feelings. I think one should reward companies that treat customers in fair and respectable manner. So from now on, if anything I shop for, is made by Sandisk I will get the Sandisk brand rather than any other brand.
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