SanDisk was the first creator of the CompactFlash device format. The format dates back to 1994 and it is still used to date. The format is flash memory and it was one of the main forms of memory card formats in the early years of these products. The CompactFlash card was more popular than the alternatives which included SmartMedia, Miniature Card, and more.
Following the CompactFlash card, SD/MMC cards and other types of memory sticks were introduced. Today, some people still use CompactFlash cards but many are moving onto the newer formats as they have more to offer. For one, the CompactFlash card is considerably large in comparison to the newer memory sticks. As a buyer can get the same specifications out of the more compact cards it would likely be a wiser investment. If you purchased a P2 or SxS memory card it would be larger and more expensive but it would be faster as well.
Types of CompactFlash Cards
There are two different forms of CompactFlash memory cards, Type I and Type II. The CompactFlash Type I card has a thickness of 3.3mm while the Type II has a thickness of 5mm. The second type of CompactFlash memory card is usually used with Microdrives. The card speed will vary by card but the type of card will not factor into this at all. CF 4.0 is one of the faster cards available.
How the CompactFlash Card Works
The CompactFlash card is inserted in the PC Card slot with the use of an adapter. CompactFlash cards use flash memory to store files for later use. They can be transferred to your computer and the card can be cleared and reused. The memory card can be reused as just mentioned but there is a limited amount of rewrites that can be done with the card before the card is not writeable. This is a result of the card wearing out but it is partially prevented with the internal controller that provides wear leveling which occurs when all the information is spread evenly within the card.
Uses of the CompactFlash Card
The CompactFlash card is most commonly used with digital cameras. It is a way for you to store images and videos so you do not have to transfer the files to your computer as often. You will be able to store a lot more between the camera memory and memory card so you can take a lot of pictures and record video as well. The memory in a digital camera is relatively low so you could end up having to delete pictures after a while as there is no space left to save any files.
The main benefit of purchasing the CompactFlash card is that it is an extremely affordable memory storage device. You can purchase a CompactFlash card with a lot of memory for a low price in comparison to the alternative formats of memory cards. Also, CompactFlash cards range in size from 2MB to 128GB.
Buying a CompactFlash Card
Most of the CompactFlash memory cards that are available now are between 64MB and 100GB. Most models of CompactFlash memory cards currently available are no more than 64GB but the larger ones can still be found. Most people prefer the CompactFlash cards that range between 1GB and 16GB in size. These are all affordable and have a sufficient amount of storage on the card. Smaller memory cards, usually lower than 512MB are becoming increasingly inexistent as cards greater than 1GB are extremely affordable.
The CompactFlash card has been around for many years but it still remains popular to this date. It is not used as commonly as before but due to the low price for the device it is still used by many people. There are alternatives that are superior as they are faster and offer larger storage but they are usually larger and more expensive as well. A CompactFlash card can be very beneficial when used with your digital camera and similar devices. The CompactFlash card is dependable, affordable, and still a great investment.