Professional cameras rely on SD Cards for storage. This extends the camera’s lifespan as it gives you the option to upgrade storage at anytime. Having an SD Card for storage on cameras also makes repairs cheaper. It is more practical to replace external storage compared to internal storage.

If a camera’s internal storage eventually fails, it would make the camera itself unusable! However, most modern cameras now use external storage, so once the memory card fails you can just replace it with another card. However, SD Cards also affect the camera’s performance. In fact, if you use a terrible card expect that the performance of the camera would be the same.

Today, we are going to compare two of SanDisk’s top-selling SD cards: SanDisk Extreme Pro and the SanDisk Extreme.

SanDisk has always been ahead of the competition when it comes to their SD Cards. But, not all Sandisk models work well on every cameras.

The Extreme line from SanDisk has been known to perform great on DSLRs, Mirrorless and action cameras. This includes the SanDisk Extreme and Extreme Pro.

Now, let’s have a look at their specifications to identify how these two SD cards differentiate.

 

Sandisk Extreme vs Extreme Pro: Specifications


We are going to use SanDisk Extreme and Sandisk Extreme Pro‘s 128 GB storage variant. The 128 GB storage options for most card brands are quite expensive but more practical to buy. In this review, we compared their max read and write speed, minimum write speed, speed class, bus type, durability, and price.

Write Speed

When you take a picture, the data collected from that shot is not stored instantly on your SD Card. It is temporarily stored on the camera’s buffer then transferred to the SD Card. The camera buffer is like the RAM (Random Access Memory) on your computer where running applications are stored temporarily.

This is why you should have an SD Card that has a fast maximum write speed. Having fast write speeds on your card would speed up the transfer on the camera’s buffer to your storage making your camera available for the next shot quicker.

SanDisk Extreme Pro has a max write speed of 90 MB per second, while the SanDisk Extreme has a maximum write speed of 40 MB per second. If you are going to use your camera mostly for taking pictures during outdoor activities or capturing wildlife photos it is advisable to get the card with higher max write speeds.

However, this is not the case when it comes to videos. Recording videos need consistent write speeds that don’t go up and down. If you are to use the camera mostly for video recording getting a card that has a higher minimum write speed is more practical.

In this case, both the SanDisk Extreme and SanDisk Extreme Pro have the same minimum write speed at 30 MB per second.

Read Speed

Most SD Card buyers pay attention to write speeds and don’t usually check the read speed. SD Card read speed is also important especially if you are going to store large files on your card. The read speed determines how long a certain file transfer would take.

If you don’t want to waste your time on slow file transfer speed, consider getting an SD Card that also has a high read speed.

The SanDisk Extreme model has a read speed of up to 90 MB per second which is 5 MB per second slower compared to SanDisk Extreme Pro’s 95 MB per second read speed.

SD Card Sizes

SanDisk Extreme is available on the following storage options:

  • 32 GB
  • 64 GB
  • 128 GB
  • 256 GB
  • 400 GB
  • 512 GB
  • 1 TB

On the other hand, SanDisk Extreme Pro model is available on the following storage variants:

  • 64 GB
  • 128 GB
  • 256 GB
  • 512 GB
  • 1 TB

SanDisk also offers a 128 + 64 GB bundle on both models which can be useful as a backup card in case you run out of space.

 

Extreme vs Extreme Pro: What’s Better?


Sandisk Extreme

 – Best Entry Level SD Card – 

The SanDisk Extreme has 39,000 plus reviews on Amazon with more than 80% five stars rating. It is advertised to be compatible with most handheld devices, smartphones, and professional cameras. The SanDisk Extreme model also supports 4k video recording performance.

If you are looking for a card that is affordable but offers decent performance, the SanDisk Extreme is a great entry-level card to use on your GoPro, DSLRs, and smartphones.

SanDisk 128GB Extreme SDXC UHS-I...
15,740 Reviews
SanDisk 128GB Extreme SDXC UHS-I...
  • Shot speeds up to 70MB/s*, transfer speeds up to 150MB/s* requires compatible devices...
  • Perfect for shooting 4K UHD video(1) and sequential burst mode photography | (1)Full...
  • Capture uninterrupted video with UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) and Video Speed Class 30...

Sandisk Extreme Pro

 – Best for 4k Video & Burst Photo Shooting – 

With over 5,000 customer reviews on Amazon and five star rating, the SanDisk Extreme Pro speaks for itself. It is advertised to be compatible with most smartphones, handheld devices, professional cameras, and action cameras. It is great for 4k video performance thanks to its 95 MB per second maximum write speed.

This card will definitely meet your expectations as a photographer or videographer if you are looking to upgrade your camera’s memory.

SALE
SanDisk 128GB Extreme PRO SDXC...
40,127 Reviews
SanDisk 128GB Extreme PRO SDXC...
  • Shot speeds up to 90MB/s, transfer speeds up to 170MB/s [requires a compatible device...
  • Perfect for shooting 4K UHD video(1) and sequential burst mode photography, (1)Full...
  • Capture uninterrupted video with UHS Speed Class 3 (U3) and video Speed Class 30...

 

What Sandisk SD Card Should You Buy for Photo & Video Cameras?


Both cards are great, no doubt. But if budget was not an issue, I would personally go for the SanDisk Extreme Pro model as it’s a higher end product than the Extreme model. However, it could get a little expensive especially for large size cards like 128 GB and up.

In the end, it all comes down to application and budget.

👉 The Extreme Pro with faster writing speeds, it would perform better on high-speed video cameras that shoot in 4k or 8k or if you do a lot of burst photos. This card will allow faster data transfer from the camera’s buffer to the SD card compared to the Extreme model.

The Extreme Pro model has also got a higher reading speed which is beneficial when you are transferring files to your computer.

Videos recorded on a professional camera tend to have larger file sizes and having a card that has slow read speeds would take you hours just for transferring videos to your computer.

SALE
SanDisk Extreme Pro SDXC UHS-I U3...
9,949 Reviews
SanDisk Extreme Pro SDXC UHS-I U3...
  • Built for extreme conditions Temperature proof, water proof, shock proof, and X-Ray...
  • Delivers 4K Ultra HD and full HD video recording and Playback
  • Meets the new UHS speed Class 3 (U3) and UHS video Speed Class 30 (V30) for 4K UHD

👉 For smartphones and low end cameras that do not need super fast reading/writing speeds, then the Sandisk Extreme would work perfectly.

If you want to learn more about these two card models, check out their full reviews here: