Dash Cam 101 – Guide to SD Cards

Hey it’s Andrew with Car Cam Central Did you know your SD card wears out faster in a dash camera? Picking the right SD card can improve durability for not much more money We tell you what to look for and why Sandisk Ultra cards should be avoided [Intro] Starting with the storage space I think the sweet spot for value is 32GB It provides 3-7 hours of 1080P recording time which is more than enough for the average
driver If you purchase a smaller card you pay more
money per gigabyte and only save a few dollars Professional drivers may benefit from larger
cards to respond to complaints about their driving with video evidence These are significantly more expensive and aren’t worth it for the typical driver Next, you want the right speed rating Too slow and your camera can stop recording You want to look for either a Class 10 or UHS U1 Speed Class markings Both mean a minimum performance of 10 megabytes of data per second written to
the SD card There are faster speeds but it won’t improve the performance of your dash camera You’ll also want the right NAND type which is how the memory chip inside your SD Card was constructed Most consumer SD cards use TLC NAND which is cheaper but less reliable More expensive cards are MLC which cost more but have better durability and are the best choice for dash cameras Durability is important as dash cameras constantly write videos to the SD card which permanently damages the memory cells Cheaper cards have much less capacity to absorb damage and can fail earlier leaving you without protection One of my recommended cards is the Transcend Endurance It uses MLC memory which Transcend rates for 6,000 hours of 1080P recording on the 32GB card If we do the math that means it can overwrite
itself with videos over 2,000 times before failing Let’s compare that against the Sandisk Ultra It uses TLC memory which on average only has 500 write cycles Comparing the two cards the Transcend Endurance has 2 ½ times more durability per dollar spent But that’s not all many premium cards have better wear leveling technology controllers, and error correction codes which all help to improve reliability under
heavy use The Sandisk Ultra card is speculated to have an especially poor controller which has compatibility problems with dash
cameras Many users have reported problems and several manufacturers warn people away from the Ultra series Your warranty is also void if the Ultra is used in a dash cam Sandisk isn’t a bad brand If the Transcend isn’t available Sandisk’s High Endurance card is a great
pick It’s just not our top recommendation because it’s less durable for the same size They also don’t talk about their error correction codes which is found in their pricier products and on Transcend’s Endurance If you’re looking for a 128GB card the Lexar 633X is a great option It has a lifetime warranty valid for dash
cameras and is made from MLC NAND When purchasing your SD card make sure it’s from a reputable source Counterfeit cards are everywhere they look like the original, but they’re
slower they’re smaller, or less reliable than the original Now, don’t buy off of eBay don’t buy off of Aliexpress don’t buy used If you purchase from Amazon you want to make sure your cards are sold directly and not fulfilled through Amazon by an unknown third party vendor Amazon’s marketplace makes it easy for companies to set a lower price and become the default seller We went through a lot of information so here’s our recommendations on one page I personally prefer Transcend’s high endurance as it has optimizations for dash camera use But this could all be marketing talk as it’s difficult to verify claims which is why Lexar’s 633X is a great option it’s cheaper and has a better lifetime warranty and speed Sandisk’s High Endurance has good reviews but on paper it’s not as good as Transcend If you’re a fan of Sandisk, this is a good purchase I would avoid their Ultra series because of it’s history of early failures and the loss of your warranty when used in a dash camera We have more details on the article we wrote on SD cards such as how Samsung may deny your warranty if their SD cards are used in a dash camera So that’s the end of this guide hope you found it useful If you liked it please give me a thumbs up if you want more please subscribe and – thanks for watching

  1. thanks for the info. i had a micro badly fail me on an incident as card was not up to the job when i reviewed contents. great advice. new card bought with better performance the the last card. all the best.

  2. What file system should I choose when formatting my dashcam memory card? I am using a Lexar 32GB 633x on a mini0609 dashcam. Thanks.

  3. I have a XiaoMi Yi action camera and they recommend SanDisk 32-64gb class 10 SD card. It is not a dash cam but I am having issues with the cards as they want it formatted in FAT32 and not exFAT32. How can I straighten this out?

  4. I have a Lexar High-speed class 10 microsdxc 64gb, is this ideal for a dash cam card? I can't tell if it's MLC or TLC. Thanks!

  5. Hello, good video 🙂 I have Sandisk Ultra microSDXC 64GB UHS-I for my SJCAM SJ5000X Elite and I am going to buy camera Xiaomi Yi DashCam and card Samsung EVO Plus microSDHC 32GB UHS-I

  6. I have R300 dash camera
    Why its says after you turn off camera
    Its says
    Format sd card two option show format sd card YES. No
    If i do not format
    Its dose not work
    What should i have to do in this case

  7. I've got a Mobius that's been running as my dash cam with the same 16GB Kingston Class 4 micro SD card for 5 years doing 5min loop recordings at 1080p 6 days a week. I've never even formatted it once and I look at the status every time I drive and it always blinks red to show its recording and it does it daily without failure. I had my car broken into recently and I had to send the dashcam footage into police and all content was there. The only thing I can see for a reason this works still is that those older Kingston cards might be SLC memory and SLC is 30'000 write cycles. Too bad I can't use the old Class 4 to record in 2k with the A119! You can search in Kingtson's document for SLC and see what they say here: https://media.kingston.com/pdfs/MKF_283.1_Flash_Memory_Guide_EN.pdf

  8. Samsung Evo Select U3 has great performance and price. ($14 for 64Gb) Micro SD cards fail the most when they can't sustain the write speeds that the video output requires. The capacity is also very important. A good 64gb TLC card will have double the life span of 32Gb TLC and equal or better than 32Gb MLC in a dash cam.

  9. This morning I went to ;JB HI FI, OFFICEWORKS, JAYCAR & CAMERA WORLD. Not one single sales person knew about MLC, not a clue.. All they know and care to know is what GB you want & HD or 4K. I drive a truck all day long and the sandisk is giving me grief.. I STILL can't get an MLC friggin card!!? IT's just bullshit!!??

  10. Thanks so much for this amazing video 💐💐💐💐, I’m looking for 128gb microSD Card MLC for blackvue dr900s-2ch 4k / please give me advice or recommend, thanks a lot

  11. Hey I just purchased two Aukey dual dash cams. I hooked the cam through my laptop and it was recording fine and I was able to access the recorded vid and pic files from my laptop. However, after installing the cam in my car, once recording reaches 3 mins of the 10 min loop, it displays “memory error” and continues to pop the error message on the screen. I formatted the sd card from my lepton and from the camera itself but didn’t help. Can you give me some help as to what could be wrong ?

  12. Just got my think ware F800 pro from Blackbox My Car today… it was shipped with a SanDisk ultra 128GB… interesting eh?

  13. i just bought the 2018 sandisk ultra A1 64gb…oh my gosh…but never mind, i give it a test to check its lifespan first, next card will be sandisk high endurance…transcend high endurance is so much more expensive thus i will avoid it

  14. Car Cam Central I will take your advice , I have one more question please, what do you think about ( TS128GUSD500S microSDXC I, C10, U3, V30 ) MLC , I waiting your comment before I buy.. thanks bro again…

  15. can you help me? i have a trekpow dashcam and when i play my recordings they play like in FFW speed. can't view in noemal speed. what's wrong here? thanks james

  16. Need help here, what's your recommendation on preferred Micro SD Card for BlackVue DR750S-2CH as of Dec 2018. Any help on this is appreciated, Thanks.

  17. I'm sure you get this question a lot but could you link those clear speakers you have on the desk behind you? Those look amazing and I am seriously interested in getting them. Thanks for the really informative video. I very much appreciate it!!

  18. How do you know if a SDXC Card has this TLC or the preferred MLC for higher rewrite endurance?!!!! Is there something written on the SD Card?

  19. I've had a Sandisk Ultra 64GB in my AS200V helmet cam for the last 3 years and it's still fine. The camera records at 6.5mb/s and has recorded 18 days of footage and still works (the estimated lifetime is 60 days based on you saying it only has ~500 write cycles though). It also benchmarked at 13mb/s sequential writes which is enough for most cameras. It's failing to record for more than a couple of minutes with my Hero 7 Black recording at 8mb/s though so I'm swapping it for something faster. Edit – Can confirm that swapping to a Samsung Evo 128GB fixed the GoPro issues.

  20. whats there to wear out ? its solid state , it has no moving parts and i would think the engineers made the "resistors, transistor films" inside to take the power dissapation , micro amps and statics .🔬🎓

  21. Hi their great review… what’s your recommendation. I have three cars that I want to hook up a camera with. I would like front and rear capabilities along with looped recording, hard wire, no screen or active Lange change warns systems and capably of recording while in car parked . What would u recommend?

  22. What about the samsung evo plus? I know it's warranty is still void if used in a dash camera but has it been known to fail? Is it better than a sandisk high endurance sd card

  23. This is very informative, although lacking in some detail I'd like to see – hope you have (or will do) a more comprehensive review of card TYPES (the Class #, TLC vs MLC, etc. – this was new to me!), with more emphasis on things like reminding people to check their dashcam's settings or options for hi/low resolutions & what the CAMERA's recording time will be. Also to consider what's the use – in case of accident, you want high-res, but for regular daily driving just-in-case-i-saw-what-i-think-i-saw recording, mid-range is fine.

  24. im sure you guys are right, but i have used a san disk 32gb ultra for a year in my dash and rear cams and they both still work fine so I have to take as I find.
    Although i do wipe them once a month which IMHO helps with over writing problems

  25. Could not find info if SanDisk High Endurance is MLC nand. May have missed answer in comments. Lexar high endurance is 2.5 times the price in Singapore vs sandisk endurance.

  26. Hi ! I need help ..in buying a card for 70mai dashcam..
    Can "stronium " cards work ?
    Here's the link

  27. I have had 4 sandisk cards blow out on my cell phone so i will only buy Samsung, so far no trouble with them. Samsung 32GB 95MB/s (U1) MicroSD EVO Select Memory Card with Adapter (MB-ME32GA/AM)

  28. Andrew WOW!! great detailed review!!!! Just found this tonight, but to my surprise, I purchased a micro sd card that didn't make your list. Considering your facts are archived since 2016 I found a PNY brand 32GB class 10 U1 micro sd card for my dash cam. Thanks for revealing the information on the life span of a card, this is not the main card I'll be using. I wanted to see how the camera recorded. Good thing I can get my money back with receipt 14 days after purchase. But now I need to find out how to tell if a micro sd card is a TLC or MLC? Definitely using your recommendation of the transcend brand.

  29. I got the balckVue DR900S dashcam and the Micro Sd isnt working anymore and i just bought Transcend MLC 128 gb (XC) ..you think its a good choice?

  30. Thank you for the updated article on SD cards. I was worried as I got the SanDisk Utra A1 as a gift wih my new dash cam and thought it was the same as the SanDisk Ultra. Turns out the A1 is more reliable.

  31. Hey andrew, am I okay with a SanDisk 64GB Extreme microSD UHS- (U3 A2 V30)? https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07FCMBLV6/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

  32. The Lexar 633x is rated for ~ 90 MB/s read and 20 MB/s write. This is gonna be good enough for 1080p dash cam recording? (Blackvue DR650s-IR 2CH)

  33. UPDATE: MAY 2019
    See our update to this video on our latest microSD card recommendations! https://youtu.be/ccd0Oo5uBek

  34. dont buy dont buy buy this buy that 😀 hate this new world where ''humans'' focus only on profit. sell sell sell…. stupid world

  35. Sandisk ultra as I use one in my dashcam is currently running for 4 years, I believe its to do with excluding a parking mode function in the dashcam.

    My mum was using the blackvue 750s – 2ch and as I experimented the card aka the original Blackvue sd card it had lost 10 days of recording, I couldn't suspect the problem as my mum was the owner and couldn't suspect the exact issue.

    Watching the video now I realize the sd cards we're using is at risk so I'll definitely be checking into the MLC cards.👍

  36. The SanDisk High Endurance 64GB is on sale right now for $16.40 USD, and the 32GB is $10.99 USD before taxes on Amazon, definitely going to be picking up a high endurance card. Thank you for making such a well informed video about these cards, I had no idea there was a difference between these and the regular cards.

  37. The Sandisk ultra sucks because I format it and it doesn’t work to record. And 633x is now 19 dollars is not 54

  38. I pulled out my dashcam card today (July 19, 2019) only to realize it had stopped recording in December of 2017!!!! I put a new card in it, micro sd from Lexar, and now it's recording again.
    I guess the card burns out from loop recording over and over?

  39. I was wondering if/when you'd mention Samsung Pro Endurance, or Samsung at all. The 128GB is just under $60, the 64GB is about $30.
    I checked the Lexar 633x you showed (by the way, there seems to be a "professional" version too..? Black and gold.) and the prices are $15 for a 64GB and $23 for a 128GB ! I can't believe how cheap – it makes me think they're junk just based off of the price, that's how cheap that is.
    But now I don't know what to buy, dammit. Haha.

  40. I got a 128gb Kingston u1 whats your thoughts on it?
    Maybe you can help me, i put in this sd card and it wont read in my dash cam, it fits properly and used my 12gb sd card into it and it worked no problem, what format do these come in

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