The new Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) flash card has been added to expand the current storage capacity of the SD lineup of flash memory cards that are limited to 2GB of storage capacity. SDHC is a new standard for Secure Digital flash cards one of the most popular flash card formats in the world. The new SDHC format was developed by the Secure Digital Association (SDA) and allows the new cards to eventually reach capacities of up to 32 GB.

The new card is now available in 4GB and 8GB capacity sizes with larger sizes coming within the next few years. The new SDHC cards also feature three Speed Class ratings of Class 2, Class 4 and Class 6.

Standard SD cards perform at SDA 1.0 specifications or via a FAT 12/16-file system. Microsoft created the Fat12 (12-bit) file system in 1977 for storing data on floppy disks and the file system was upgraded to FAT 16 in 1987 to provide more storage capacity. Fat 32 was developed in 1996 and is a much more current technology that can accommodate the storage of more files.

SDHC technology is based on SDA 2.0 specifications that update the file system to a FAT32 system for SDHC flash cards and devices. Because the SDHC file system works differently than previous SD cards, it is not backwards compatible with standard SD-format host devices. SDHC cards only work with SDHC compatible host devices. The RIDATA SDHC card is compatible with most every SDHC portable device in the market.

Accompanying this new specification are three levels of speed classes to help identify the speed and performance of SDHC cards. These Speed Class Ratings specify a minimum sustained write speed of 2MB/s for Class 2 4MB/s for Class 4 6MB/s for Class 6.

While the SDHC card is the same physical size as standard SD cards, its storage capacity sizes begin where the SD’s end. The 4GB SDHC card can store approximately 1240 1880 x 2160 JPEG images; or roughly one-hour and 40-minutes of 704 x 480 MPEG2 full-motion video; or about 19 hours of 320 x 240 MPEG4 15fps video; or around 68 hours/1000 songs of 128kbps audio.

The new SDHC cards were developed to serve the demand for capturing, storing and sharing high volumes of digital video, music, and images, as the files related to this content are growing larger and larger.

Due to the influx of larger megapixel cameras on the market, amateur and professional photographers alike prefer to have larger-capacity memory cards so they do not have to change cards as often. SDHC cards give photographers the ability to capture more images (whether still or video), at higher resolutions.

SDHC host devices are backwards compatible with standard SD cards. Users can continue to use standard SD cards as they have in the past. For high-capacity removable storage, users will need to start using SDHC cards in SDHC-enabled devices. Using an SDHC card in a standard SD host device or camera may cause the card to work improperly or not be recognized by the device.

To find an SDHC card at your local retailer, look for the SDHC logo and Speed Class appearing on both the card packaging and the label. Unless you see the SDHC logo, it’s best to assume that the card is a standard SD format card and has 2GB or less of storage.

For example the RIDATA SDHC flash memory card also features CPRM copyright protection for optimal security and reliability, ECC auto-correction to correct data errors, and a firmware-update function that provides the latest firmware and flawless compatibility with future advanced equipment. Advanced Media backs the card with a 2-year warranty for lightning series and 5 years warranty for supreme series to ensuring problem-free usage.

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