Even though digital storage is as cheap, we all want to save money wherever we can. What is actually the difference between those super cheap SD cards you see in various internet ads and the expensive ones?
The vast majority of experienced camera users know that you should not buy and use cheap SD cards. For various reasons. However, many newcomers to the photography world just does not know what is real or what is fake before the mistake is done.
In the hilarious video above, Linus Tech Tips looks into those super cheap “big” micro SD cards. Imagine it, 1 Terabyte for only $32.99. Those greedy tech corporations are defrauding us when we can just order it cheap from China! Thank God for the internet!
On the serious side though. There are many frauds on the internet and this is just another one. What surprised me the most was how ingenious it actually is. When they plug in the SD card, it actually does show 976 Gigabytes, a little less than the advertised one Tera byte. They are even able to keep adding files and the first files they add works perfectly. The reviews on the eBay site are even positive. What is going on? Maybe the clue is in one of the negative reviews, where one reviewer thinks some of his data has been overwritten. Nevertheless, how does that add up with the computer showing 976 Gigabytes?
Check out the video, stay aware and remember to use some common sense when buying stuff on the internet. Do not do like I did. I bought a $2 64 Gigabyte micro SD card on Wish.
In my own experience, buying cheap SD cards can be catastrophic for your footage. Back in 2016, I went to Iceland and for some rookie reason I put a cheap 64 Gigabyte micro SD card into my GoPro Hero 3 Black. I just needed something, which were “good enough” for timelapses. After all the GoPro only photographs in 12 megapixels. Those files are relatively small. What could possibly go wrong?
As you can see on the screenshot above 18 out of 63 files are either corrupted or unreadable. This is only a small segment of the time-lapse footage. A problem I have never had using a proper good quality micro SD card. Personally, I go with Sandisk most of the time, but there are other acknowledged brands out there such as Samsung and Sony. Safe to say I never used this footage and lesson was learned. I hope that you can benefit from it too.