Memory Cards for Digital Cameras

Another key consideration with any digital camera is the type and amount of memory that you’ll require. Most digital cameras use Compact Flash (CF) memory, but everything from Smart Media to Memory Sticks to miniature hard drives are supported by various manufacturers. In general, the particular camera that you’ve purchased with dictate the type of memory you’ll need, although some models do support multiple types. One advantage of Compact Flash and Smart Media is that they tend to be readily available and relatively inexpensive compared to more proprietary memory types like Sony’s Memory Sticks. This is an important consideration, especially if you memory needs increase.

The amount of memory that you’ll require largely depends upon the number of pictures you intend to take, and the resolution or file format that you’ll be using. For example, if you’re saving picture in JPG format at a lower resolution, you can store many time more pictures than if you use TIFF format at a higher resolution. For casual users, a 256 MB memory card is usually sufficient, keeping in mind that you should have at least one spare memory card (perhaps a smaller one included with your camera) for “overflow” or backup situations, just like a spare roll of film. However, just like with a PC, you can never have too much memory for your digital camera. If you plan on taking lots of high-quality and high-resolution photos, a 1-2GB memory card (or better) is a great investment.

Author: Dan DiNicolo

Dan DiNicolo is a freelance author, consultant, trainer, and the managing editor of He is the author of the CCNA Study Guide found on this site, as well as many books including the PC Magazine titles Windows XP Security Solutions and Windows Vista Security Solutions. Click here to contact Dan.