Best SD Memory Card For The Sony A7II

Sony A7II Memory Card

The Sony a7II was the first full frame mirrorless camera by Sony to take on a new design and a more serious construction. With its in-body stabilization system, the camera also makes a great tool for 1080p video, but the new codec that is offered also now requres a special kind of memory card.

With regards to memory card speeds, Sony has yet to join the rest of the world with USB 3.0 bus speeds. The Sony A7II still features slow 33MB/s memory card write speed caps which means you won’t really see any huge advantage to buy a really fast memory card for your camera.

 

Best Memory Card For The Sony A7II

I’ll list what cards work great for this camera but I also want to put in a few recommendations. If you’re thinking about adding on a Sony 4k camera in the future, (such as maybe the A7SII or even the A7rII) you might want to plan ahead and buy a memory card that will also work with 4k video. This means you should buy a XAVC memory card that is also U3 capable. More on this later.

 

Sony A7r II Memory Card Speed Tests

The USB speed tests were done using a MacBook Pro and the camera tests were done in camera. UHS-II USB 3.0 memory cards were done on PC since the current Macbook Pro USB slot is not compatible with UHS-II

*I’ve listed what cards are 4K capable even though the Sony A7II does not shoot internal 4k. I’m doing this just because you might want to consider buying a card that will work on future generation 4K cameras, since this seems to be the direction Sony is going with all their cameras.

SD Memory Cards USB 3.0 Read USB 3.0 Write *4K Video 100M Sony A7 II Write Speeds See Price
UHS-II          
Lexar 64GB SDXC 2000x 280.9 MB/s 181.4 MB/s Yes 32.17 MB/s Amazon, Adorama
Toshiba 64GB SDXC 238.5 MB/s 199.7 MB/s Yes 32.99 MB/s Amazon
Sandisk Extreme Pro SDXC 64GB 257.3 MB/s 109.9 MB/s Yes 32.07 MB/s AmazonAdorama
Lexar 64GB 1000x SDXC 145.0 MB/s 60.7 MB/s Yes 32.17 MB/s Amazon, Adorama
UHS-I          
Sandisk Extreme Pro 64GB U3 89.0 MB/s 84.7 MB/s Yes 33.51 MB/s Amazon, Adorama
Kingston 64GB Class U3 88.1 MB/s 74.3 MB/s Yes 33.44 MB/s Amazon, Adorama
Sandisk Extreme Plus 64GB U3 88.9 MB/s 62.0 MB/s Yes 33.10 MB/s Amazon, Adorama
Sandisk Extreme 64GB U3 71.3 MB/s 52.1 MB/s Yes 33.02 MB/s Amazon, Adorama
Samsung Pro 64GB U1 86.8 MB/s 77.2 MB/s No 32.54 MB/s Amazon, Adorama
PNY 64GB U1 86.1 MB/s 54.5 MB/s No 32.32 MB/s Amazon
PNY 64GB U3 87.9 MB/s 61.6 MB/s Sometimes 32.20 MB/s Amazon
Transcend 64GB U3 87.7 MB/s 64.1 MB/s Yes 31.86 MB/s Amazon, Adorama
Lexar 600x 64GB U1 85.6 MB/s 60.1 MB/s No 31.70 MB/s Amazon, Adorama
Sony 64GB U3 87.2 MB/s 71.9 MB/s Yes 31.29 MB/s Amazon
Samsung 64GB EVO U1 43.9 MB/s 22.7 MB/s No 22.70 MB/s Amazon, Adorama

 

Speed Chart Overview

The UHS-II memory cards are the fastest, but only marginally. I wouldn’t recommend you spend the extra money on a UHS-II card unless you want faster transfer speeds from your card to your computer. In that case, you’ll want to make sure you have the Best UHS-II USB 3.0 Card Reader.

 

Why So Slow?

 

The reason the Sony A7II writes to memory cards so slow is because they are still using USB 2.0 bus speeds in their camera. However, because Sony includes such a large buffer, you won’t really notice it when you’re shooting in real world situations.

 

Best SD Card For The Sony A7rII

Based on how each card performs, the UHS-I Sandisk cards the best all around card for this camera.

For a less expensive card, I would choose Sony or Transcend.

 

Best Sony A7II SD Cards

 

Sandisk Extreme Pro 64GB SDXC U3 UHS-I – (Amazon) (Adorama)

Transcend 64Gb SDXC U3 UHS-I – (Amazon) (Adorama)

Sony 64GB SDXC U3 UHS-I – (Amazon)

While I usually recommend PNY cards, many people on the Sony A7rII page have been reporting issues with that card. So I’m going to recommend people avoid it for now. And it’s not because PNY doesn’t make great cards, they do, it’s just Sony 4k video recording is still extremely fickle.

 

Sony A7II SD Card For Video

You need to use SDXC U1 memory card to shoot XAVC video on the Sony A7II.

A U1 card should let you shoot XAVC S HD, but I would recommend buying a U3 card just to be a little future proof.

If you’re not at all interested in shooting XAVC video, then here are some memory card specs that you’ll need for the other video codecs.

XAVC S HD – UHS-I SDXC U1 or U3

AVCHD – UHS-I SDHC U1 or better

MP4 – UHS-I SDHC U1 or better

 

Best SD Memory Card For The Sony A7rII Conclusions

Sandisk seems to always make the best SD cards. Hopefully that continues to be the trend now that they are owned by Western Digital. For less expensive cards, I’ve had great success with Sony, and Transcend as well as Lexar.

I haven’t found any Samsung U3 SD cards yet, but they do make Micro U3 cards that will work with an SD card adapter.

While the UHS-II memory cards are a tiny bit faster, it’s really not going to give you any benefit when shooting. The benefit comes from transfering files to your computer. If you shoot on huge cards 128GB and so on, it might take awhile to transfer that data from your card to your computer. In that case a UHS-II card will benefit you as long as you have a faster UHS-II card reader.

I also keep these pages updated when information I get from readers. If your experiencing any problems with any particular brand, let me know and I’ll make a note of it.

 

Need Accessories For You Sony A7II?

Check out the Sony A7II accessories and gear page!

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