Having an SD card reader for MacBook Pro at your disposal is practically indispensable for a broad spectrum of users – photographers, videographers, musicians, and graphic designers, to name a few.

The need for an SD card reader for MacBook Pro becomes even more apparent when you consider that Apple, in its newer models, has phased out the built-in SD card slot.

This means that to get your data from an SD card onto your MacBook, an external reader is necessary.

This guide will help you identify the best SD card reader to suit your needs.

How Do I Read My SD Card on My Mac Pro?

Reading an SD card on your Mac Pro is quite simple. Firstly, you’ll need an SD card reader, as newer Mac models do not come with a built-in slot. Insert the SD card into the reader, then plug the reader into one of the USB ports on your Mac Pro. The SD card should appear on your desktop or in your Finder window. You can open it by double-clicking its icon, allowing you to browse and manipulate the files stored within.

Keep in mind that the speed and efficiency of the data transfer depend on both the quality of the SD card reader and the SD card itself. For large, high-resolution files, you would ideally want an SD card reader that supports UHS-II or UHS-III cards, as they offer faster read and write speeds.

By the way, check out 12 Top SD Cards for Macbook Pro (M1 and M2)

If you have CAC card, learn how to open it on your computer: Top 7 CAC Card Reader for Mac [Buying Guide].

SD Card Reader

7 Best SD Card Readers for MacBook Pro

Without further delays, here are the best SD card readers that you can get on the market today.

1. Anker 2-in-1 USB 3.0 Portable Card Reader

Anker 2-in-1 USB 3.0 SD Card Reader...
39,072 Reviews
Anker 2-in-1 USB 3.0 SD Card Reader...
  • Simultaneously read and write on two cards to save yourself the effort of constant...
  • USB 3.0 enables data transfer rates of up to 5Gbps for faster Sync times, backward...
  • Fully powered via your USB port — no additional power supply required.

The Anker 2-in-1 USB 3.0 Portable Card Reader is an excellent choice for MacBook Pro users. This SD card reader stands out for its compact design and remarkable data transfer speed. Equipped with a USB 3.0 interface, it ensures quick file transfers, reaching up to 5Gbps. It is compatible with SDXC, SDHC, SD, Micro SDXC, Micro SDHC, and Micro SD cards.

Furthermore, it doesn’t require any additional drivers or software installation – you just plug it in, and it’s ready to use. Additionally, Anker’s outstanding customer service and 18-month warranty add peace of mind to your purchase.

 2. UGREEN SD Card Reader USB Type C

UGREEN USB C SD Card Reader 3 in 1...
1,473 Reviews
UGREEN USB C SD Card Reader 3 in 1...
  • USB C SD Card Reader: This SD Card Reader features the newest USB Type C plug, easy...
  • Dual Slots Supported: The USB C card reader 2-in-1 gives you the flexibility and...
  • USB Port Extend: The USB C card reader also features with USB A female port,...

UGREEN SD Card Reader with a USB Type-C interface is designed for newer MacBook Pros. It offers a simultaneous reading and writing of two cards, eliminating the hassle of constant unplugging and re-plugging. It supports SD, SDHC, SDXC, Micro SD, Micro SDHC, and Micro SDXC cards, handling the large volumes of data prevalent in 4K video files and high-resolution images.

The UGREEN SD card reader is robust and portable, with a premium aluminium alloy cover for better heat dissipation. It also comes with a flexible cable to reduce stress on the USB port on your MacBook Pro, further ensuring longevity.

3. SanDisk MobileMate USB 3.0 microSD Card Reader

SanDisk MobileMate USB 3.0 microSD...
27,471 Reviews
SanDisk MobileMate USB 3.0 microSD...
  • Compact and durable microSD card reader
  • Fast UHS-I transfer speeds of up to 170 MB/s*
  • With USB 3.0, move content up to 10x faster than USB 2.0 readers(2)

SanDisk is a trusted name in the world of digital storage, and their MobileMate USB 3.0 microSD Card Reader is a top-tier product. This reader is compact, durable, and fast, with support for microSD cards including microSDHC and microSDXC. It’s USB 3.0 compatible, guaranteeing high-speed transfers.

This tiny device doesn’t have a cover or cap, meaning there are no small parts to lose. Moreover, it comes with a two-year warranty, demonstrating SanDisk’s confidence in their product.

4. USB C Dock 7-IN-1 Card Reader

USB C Hub 4K 60Hz, Dockteck 7-in-1...
2,428 Reviews
USB C Hub 4K 60Hz, Dockteck 7-in-1...
  • USB C Dock 7-IN-1: Equipped with 4K @ 60Hz HDMI output, 100W PD charging, 1Gbps RJ45...
  • Crystal-Clear Visual Enjoyment: Mirror or extend your screens and directly stream...
  • Super-Fast Charging & Stable Internet: The 100W PD port offers continuous power...

The Dockteck 7-IN-1 USB C Dock is a multi-functional tool, equipped with a 4K @ 60Hz HDMI output, 100W PD charging, a 1Gbps RJ45 Ethernet connection, an SD/TF card reader, and two USB-A ports. This compact unit can transform your device into a versatile workstation, delivering high-quality visuals, super-fast charging, seamless data transfer, and a secure internet connection.

Designed for broad compatibility, it works with various Type-C devices and operating systems. Prior to purchasing, ensure your device’s USB-C port supports DP Alt Mode, data transfer, and charging. With its plug-and-play functionality, ultra-slim design, and 24-month warranty, it offers a combination of convenience and peace of mind.

5. 5-in-1 ZIYUETEK USB C CF Card Reader

Anker 2-in-1 USB 3.0 SD Card Reader...
39,072 Reviews
Anker 2-in-1 USB 3.0 SD Card Reader...
  • Simultaneously read and write on two cards to save yourself the effort of constant...
  • USB 3.0 enables data transfer rates of up to 5Gbps for faster Sync times, backward...
  • Fully powered via your USB port — no additional power supply required.

The USB C Compact Flash Card Reader offers seamless data transfer between your memory card and USB Type-C or Thunderbolt 3 Port devices, such as MacBook Pro, iPad Pro, Surface Book 2, Samsung Galaxy, Pixelbook, and Dell XPS. Note that while Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C utilize the same port type, Thunderbolt 1 & 2 do not.

This device stands out for its ability to read five cards simultaneously, transferring data among SD, CF, Micro SD cards, and MS/M2 cards. It supports SDHC, SDXC, Micro SD, Micro SDHC (UHS-I), Micro SDXC (UHS-I), CF Type I/MD/MMC formats, making it perfect for transferring high-resolution images and video recordings, with capacity up to 3 TB. An LED on the reader confirms USB bus power and active data file transfer, while its plug & play installation requires no external drivers. Included with the device are a 15CM (1 feet) cable and a user manual.

6. USB C Hub Adapters for MacBook Pro/MacBook Air M1 M2

USB C Hub Adapters for MacBook...
4,681 Reviews
USB C Hub Adapters for MacBook...
  • 【6 IN 2 Multiport Macbook Air/Pro Adapter 】 This Macbook Air/Pro adapter is...
  • 【High Speed USB 3.0 Data Transfer】This MacBook Air adapter allows you to connect...
  • 【Super-Fast Power Delivery】The Mac Adapter for MacBook Pro/Air comes with...

The 6-IN-2 Multiport MacBook Air/Pro Adapter is a tailor-made accessory for MacBook users, specially designed for MacBook Pro 14/16 inch 2021 and MacBook Air 13.6 inch 2022 models. It also supports other MacBook Pro and Air models from 2016 onwards with Dual Type C ports. The adapter expertly extends two USB C ports into a Thunderbolt 3 port, three USB 3.0 ports, and an SD/TF card reader without blocking the MagSafe port for charging. The high-speed USB 3.0 ports offer up to 5Gbps data transmission, enhancing your work efficiency, but note, they won’t support Apple’s USB super drive.

The adapter also includes a 100W power-delivery port for fast pass-through charging and supports up to 5K or 4K @ 60Hz video display. However, it can’t work with MacBook Pro Case. The integrated SD/TF card reader supports virtually all SD card formats and allows for simultaneous reading of both types of cards at speeds up to 104 MB/s. Enclosed in a sleek aluminum exterior, this compact adapter keeps wires organized and travels easily, making it a perfect companion for MacBook users on the go.

7. RayCue USB C to Micro SD TF Memory Card Reader

USB C to Micro SD TF Memory Card...
2,937 Reviews
USB C to Micro SD TF Memory Card...
  • 【Plug and Play】 This USB C SD card reader no need to download Apps, plug and...
  • 【Wide Compatibility】 Micro sd card reader Compatible with SD, SDHC, SDXC, Micro...
  • 【Super Utility Ports】 With this micro SD card adapter, you can connect USB...

The Plug and Play USB C SD Card Reader offers a hassle-free, app-less setup, enabling easy and fast photo and video transfers from your SD/TF Card or other USB 2.0 devices to your USB C device at speeds of 14MB~16MB/S. It is widely compatible with SD, SDHC, SDXC, Micro SD, Micro SDHC, Micro SDXC cards and USB 2.0 devices, as well as USB C devices such as new MacBooks (2016-2019), iPad Pro, Samsung Galaxy S10 / S9 / S8, Google Pixel, and others. Additionally, this adapter allows the connection of various USB peripherals like a flash disk, mouse, keyboard, card reader, camera, printer, hard drive, and more to your USB C smartphone, promoting faster typing and chatting experiences.

Crafted from upgraded fireproof material, the reader offers safety, wear and impact resistance, and portability with its lightweight, compact design. Note, ensure your USB C smartphone supports OTG function, and that the USB port, SD port, and Micro SD port cannot be used simultaneously. All smartphones CANNOT recognize NTFS format; only FAT32 format is supported. The product comes with 24 hours after-sale service for any queries or concerns.

Why is My MacBook Pro Not Recognizing My SD Card?

When your MacBook Pro fails to recognize an SD card, it can be due to various factors. Here, we delve deeper into these reasons and suggest potential remedies.

1. SD Card Format

Firstly, the issue might arise if your SD card is formatted in a file system that is not compatible with macOS. While macOS supports a variety of file systems such as APFS, Mac OS Extended, MS-DOS (FAT), and exFAT, it may struggle with others like NTFS without additional software. For maximum compatibility across various systems, it is often recommended to format SD cards in exFAT, as this format works with both Windows and macOS, and it supports files larger than 4GB.

FAT32 is another file system that is widely supported, including by macOS. This file system is older than exFAT and has a few limitations in comparison. Most notably, it cannot handle single files that are larger than 4GB, which could be an issue for high-resolution videos or large backup files. If your files are all smaller than 4GB each, and you want broad compatibility with a wide range of devices (including older ones), FAT32 could be a good choice.

Find the information on  How to Format Any SD Card to FAT32 on Mac (Ultimate Guide)>>>

mac won't read sd card

If you suspect that the file system might be the issue, you can reformat the SD card. However, keep in mind that reformatting will erase all data on the card, so make sure to back up any important files first.

To reformat an SD card on your MacBook Pro, follow these steps:

1. Insert your SD card into the SD card reader and connect it to your MacBook Pro.
2. Open ‘Disk Utility’ (you can find it in the ‘Utilities’ folder within ‘Applications’).
3. In the Disk Utility sidebar, select the SD card you want to format.
4. Click ‘Erase’ at the top of the Disk Utility window.
5. Enter a name for the SD card, choose ‘exFAT’ for the format, and ‘GUID Partition Map’ for the scheme.
6. Click ‘Erase’, then after the card is formatted, click ‘Done’.

2. Physical Damages

Secondly, the SD card might be physically damaged. Look for visible signs of damage on the card, such as scratches or dents. If the SD card is damaged, it will likely need to be replaced.

3. Issues With the SD Card Reader

Thirdly, there might be an issue with the SD card reader. Ensure that the reader is properly connected and the SD card is correctly inserted. If possible, test the reader with another SD card to see if it’s functioning as expected. You could also try connecting the reader to another USB port on your MacBook Pro or use it with a different device. If the reader is found to be faulty, it will need to be replaced.

4. Problem With the USB Port

Lastly, there might be a problem with the USB port on your MacBook Pro. Try connecting other devices to the port to see if they work. If the port is the issue, you may need to seek professional help to get it fixed.

In any case, before you start troubleshooting, it’s a good idea to try the SD card on another device. This will help you determine whether the problem lies with the card itself or if it’s related to your MacBook Pro or the SD card reader. If the card works on another device, the problem likely resides with your MacBook Pro or the reader. Conversely, if it doesn’t work on another device, the SD card might be the culprit.

Also read: Easily Remove Write Protection from SD Card [Windows/Mac]


Is SD Card Adapter and Reader The Same?

No, an SD card adapter and an SD card reader are not the same thing. An SD card adapter is a device that allows a smaller SD card, like a microSD card, to fit into larger SD card slots.

On the other hand, an SD card reader is a device that allows you to read the data on an SD card when connected to a computer or another device.

Find Top 7 SD Card Adapters for Mac>>>



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