SanDisk Extreme PLUS Review SD Cards

In this post we discuss the technical characteristics of the SanDisk Extreme PLUS 32GB SD cards, the performance tests we have performed and our personal opinion / recommendations.

Models we have tested:

SanDisk SD Extreme PLUS 32GB (90MB / s)
SanDisk microSD Extreme PLUS 32GB (95MB / s)

Technical characteristics:

  • Compatible SD / SDHC / SDXC (compatible with all SD devices)
  • UH Speed ​​Class U3  (guarantees a minimum write speed of 30MB / s). They are cards that perfectly record Full HD and 4K video. They also enable high-speed burst mode recording (photography)
  • UHS-I bus . Currently most cameras and devices currently use this bus. Devices using the UHS-II bus can use these cards without any problem, although for these devices a UHS-II card is recommended to take advantage of their full potential.
  • Read speed according to manufacturer: 90MB / s (SD version) and 95MB / s (microSD version)
  • Storage capacity: 32GB
  • High strength / durability . Water resistant and the operating temperature range according to the manufacturer is between -25ºC and 85ºC. The cards do not include moving or mechanical components, there are no problems with vibrations or shocks. They are also resistant to X-rays, for example when passing through airport controls, etc.

Test of performance

Methodology:

  • Speed ​​tests are performed from a Linux environment, using the gnome-disk-utility tool 
  • Cards are measured via Kingston MobileLite G4 reader connected to a USB 3.0 port
  • A file size of 25MB is chosen (representative of the RAW file size of a current camera) and a sequence of 100 repetitions is executed to obtain the average speed and the behavior graph.

SanDisk SD Extreme PLUS 32GB (90MB / s)

Average read speed : 88.2 MB / s
Maximum read speed: 92 MB / s

Average write speed : 69.9 MB / s
Maximum write speed: 73 MB / s

SanDisk microSD Extreme PLUS 32GB (95MB / s)

Average read speed : 87.5 MB / s
Maximum read speed: 91 MB / s

Average write speed : 79.6 MB / s
Maximum write speed: 84 MB / s

Conclusions

The two cards are very fast. Both the reading and writing speeds are stable and consistent throughout all the tests we have carried out, with different file sizes.

In the case of the microSD version, the writing speed is of the order of 80 MB / s , really impressive.

For the SD version the writing speed is around 70 MB / s

The two cards are perfect for Full HD and 4K video recording . In the case of 4K, the maximum speed of the standard is about 30 MB / s, so these cards give a very wide margin.

The SanDisk Extreme Plus are recommended by  GoPro for their sports cameras.

For photography, where the writing speed is especially noticeable is in burst mode , especially if the camera generates very large RAW files or you work with RAW + JPG. Mirrorless cameras usually have a higher burst capacity (more photos per second), so these cards are interesting to take full advantage of that shooting speed.

The reading speed is also noted when downloading photos or video files from the card to the computer . But keep in mind that if your computer has an integrated card reader, it will surely limit your working speed. Some of these readers work with maximum speeds of 20MB / s so you will not take advantage of the advantages of the card. In that case it is preferable to use an external reader via USB 3.0 (blue USB connector)

There are pretty good card readers for very little money. You can look for one with these characteristics:

  • Connection via USB 3.0
  • SD and microSD formats
  • Compatible with SD, SDHC, SDXC
  • UHS-I and UHS-II bus compatible

SD or microSD?

The external format  does not influence either the capacity (GB) or the speed (MB / s) , that is, each model will have its own characteristics. A microSD card can have as much capacity and speed as a traditional SD card.

The microSD cards can be used in all cameras (SD) through an adapter, which in many cases comes with the card itself (as with the SanDisk Extreme Plus microSD).

If you are only going to use the card with the camera you can buy an SD directly. If you also have a sports camera (most use microSD) or you want to use the card in more devices (tablet, smartphone …) then the microSD gives you more flexibility.