Buyer’s guide: the best SD memory cards in 2021

Nintendo Switch, smartphones, tablets, cameras … Our electronic devices are multiplying but often share the same fault: too limited storage. Increasing this is apparently simple, since it is often enough to get an SD memory card. But how do you choose the right SD memory card in 2021? What are the best models? To find out, take a look at our buying guide.

Best SD memory cards
Best SD memory cards. Image from Unsplash

While you have just bought yourself your brand new smartphone – after reading our review of the best smartphones available for purchase in 2021 – it is already saturated. Horror: you are already out of storage space. Tired of having to free up space on your smartphone every day, you told yourself it was time to buy yourself an SD card to earn a few dozen GB. Head to the store near you to buy a memory card. But, then you discover that there are dozens of models with different characteristics and standards. MicroSD card, microSDHC, class 10, writing speed… To understand everything and not make mistakes, follow our selection.

Storage space, interface, writing and reading speed, class, certification: how to choose a micro SD card?

Several criteria are to be taken into account in the choice of an SD memory card. We will go through them all here.

The first criterion to take into account in your choice is of course storage space that the SD card offers. And of course, storage space has a huge influence on the purchase price. Choice will vary according to your uses : 16 GB may be sufficient, but it may be more interesting to invest in 32 or 64 GB for a Nintendo Switch, for example. See more for professional photographers. We thus find three standards distinct:

  • Standard microSD SD cards (2 Go max)
  • SDHC High Capacity SD cards (32 Go max)
  • SD cards Extended Capacity SDXC (2 To max)

The other important criterion to take into account is that of the interface. There are three main interfaces. They mainly define the maximum theoretical throughput of the interface de la carte (25 Mo / s, 104 Mo / s or 312 Mo / s):

  • High Speed (25 Mo / s)
  • UHS-I (104 Mo / s)
  • UHS-II (312 Mo / s)

Then the manufacturers always specify the theoretical read and write speeds. Be careful, however, since the write speed is often forgotten by manufacturers. If this is not specified, keep in mind that the bitrate displayed will be that of the default reading. You will notice that there are several types of classes (the most common being Class 10, and UHS-1). Here is what the speeds correspond to.

Class Minimum write speed Maximum write speed
UHS-II (U3) 30 Mo / s 312 Mo / s
UHS- II (U1) 10 Mo / s 156 Mo / s
UHS-I (U3) 30 Mo / s 104 Mo / s
UHS-I (U1) 10 Mo / s 50 Mo / s
Class 10 10 Mo / s 25 Mo / s
Class 6 6 Mo / s
Class 4 4 Mo / s
Class 2 2 Mo / s

Another element to take into account: the classes. You will notice, on the images of micro SD cards, that a logo with a C or a U is often specified. Next to it is always a number, between 1 and 10. This is the speed class that gives an idea of ​​the minimum guaranteed write throughput, ranging from 2 to 10 MB / s for C and 10 or 30 Mo / s for U (U1 / U3).

Finally, the last element to take into account is certifications : A1, or A2. There are no others. They guarantee minimum speeds in data transfers: 1500 read IOPS and 500 write IOPS for the A1, and 4000 read IOPS and 2000 write IOPS for the A2.

Finally, remember to see if the SD card is impact resistant, water resistant, etc. Some models of this selection are. We also systematically specify whether the SD card is delivered with an adapter or not, which can be very practical on a daily basis.

The best microSD or microSDHC card models of 2021

Here are several SD memory cards that should suit you whatever your use. All are sorted by price, from the cheapest to the most expensive. The top of our selection is at the top of the list.

⭐️ Editorial selection: SanDisk Extreme PRO 64 GB SDXC memory card

SDXC SanDisk Extreme PRO 64 Go
SDXC SanDisk Extreme PRO 64 Go

Here is the editorial selection, the SanDisk Extreme PRO 64 GB SDXC memory card. It’s all there: the storage space is ideal for most uses and the value for money – around 30 euros, sometimes even less – is unbeatable. In addition, this memory card offers a write speed of up to 90 MB / s, a transfer speed of up to 170 MB / s. There is also a UHS speed class 3 (U3) and a speed class video 30 (V30). Resistant to shocks, extreme temperatures and X-rays. It is also waterproof. Available in UHS-II for € 125.

  • Cut : 64 Go
  • Standards : SDXC
  • Interface : UHS-I
  • Reading speed theoretical : 170 Mo / s
  • Theoretical write speed : 90 Mo / s
  • Class : U3
  • Certification : not specified
  • Guarantee : for life
  • With adapter : Yes
  • Price : 25 €

Kingston SDC10 memory card

Kingston SDC10
Kingston SDC10

Here is the top of the entry level in terms of SD memory cards, the Kingston SDC10 in 16 GB. Its interest is rather limited but its price is unbeatable. In this category, the Kingston SDC10 is a very interesting alternative since it is sold for less than 5 € on Amazon. Its class 10, however, guarantees you correct read and write speeds for HD videos.

  • Cut : 16 Go
  • Standards : SDHC
  • Interface : UHS-I
  • Reading speed theoretical : 10 Mo / s
  • Theoretical write speed : not specified
  • Class : C10
  • Certification : not specified
  • Guarantee : for life
  • With adapter : Yes
  • Price : 5 €

SanDisk Ultra 32GB microSDHC Memory Card

SanDisk Ultra 32GB microSDHC Memory Card
SanDisk Ultra 32GB microSDHC Memory Card

This is “the” SD memory card, the one you’ve probably seen at work or at a friend’s house. This is one of the biggest references in the field. It is offered in storage capacities up to 256 GB. It offers
Transfer speeds of up to 100MB / s, for performance class A1, UHS-I speed class and Class 10 for Full HD video recording and playback. A memory card that has widely proven itself with its consumers and that will be suitable for all types of use.

  • Cut : 32 Go
  • Standards : SDHC
  • Interface : UHS-I
  • Reading speed theoretical : 100 Mo / s
  • Theoretical write speed : 12 Mo / s
  • Class : C10
  • Certification : not specified
  • Guarantee : for life
  • With adapter : Yes
  • Price : 11,99 €

Samsung EVO Plus 256 GB memory card

Samsung EVO Plus 256 Go
Samsung EVO Plus 256 Go

Be careful, it will be difficult to find so much storage for such a low price. Samsung offers the Evo Plus in 256 GB for around 35 € on Amazon, a price hard to beat. Sold with an adapter, it is UHS-I (Class 10) and offers a read speed of 95 MB / s and a write speed of 90 MB / s. It is just guaranteed for less time than the other models presented here. A must-have despite this.

  • Cut : 256 Go
  • Standards : SDXC
  • Interface : UHS-I
  • Reading speed theoretical : 95 Mo / s
  • Theoretical write speed : 10 Mo / s
  • Class : U3
  • Certification : not specified
  • Guarantee : 2 years
  • With adapter : Yes
  • Price : 35 €

Samsung SDXC UHS-I EVO Micro SD Class 10 64 GB memory card

Samsung SDXC UHS-I EVO Micro SD Class 10 64 GB memory card
Samsung SDXC UHS-I EVO Micro SD Class 10 64 GB memory card

We go to a higher range with the Micro SD Evo SDXC UHS-I 64 GB memory card with adapter from Samsung. There is a write speed of up to 48 MB / s (Class 10), a 10-year warranty. It is waterproof and withstands more than 24 hours of immersion in seawater. Also shock-proof (up to 1.5 tonnes of pressure, a car) and withstands temperatures ranging from – 25 ° C to + 85 ° C. In short, this small SD card will find its audience among those who travel regularly.

  • Cut : 64 Go
  • Standards : SDXC
  • Interface : UHS-I
  • Reading speed theoretical : 48 Mo / s
  • Theoretical write speed : unspecified
  • Class : U3
  • Certification : not specified
  • Guarantee : 10 years
  • With adapter : Yes
  • Price : 74,90 €

SanDisk Extreme PRO 1 To

SanDisk Extreme PRO 1 To
SanDisk Extreme PRO 1 To

Do you need a lot of storage space? Introducing the SanDisk Extreme PRO in 1TB edition. Like the model we selected above, it offers excellent read and write speeds. It is UHD 4K compatible, resistant to extreme temperatures, water, shocks and X-rays. It is above all the best value for money for its storage space. A compact and durable microSD card reader comes with it.

  • Cut : 1 To
  • Standards : SDXC
  • Interface : UHS-I
  • Reading speed theoretical : 170 Mo / s
  • Theoretical write speed : 90 Mo / s
  • Class : U3
  • Certification : A2
  • Guarantee : for life
  • With adapter : Yes
  • Price : 349 €

That’s it: that’s it for this selection of the best SD memory cards. Obviously, this list is not exhaustive: you are free to search the Internet to find the one that best meets your budget and your needs.

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