XQD Card

Once Henry “Bill” Gates once said 64 MB of RAM speed is enough for a well-deserved PC user. However, today the technology has come a long distance, which increased the data storage space and reduced the physical size of the devices. In those days, physical size is the challenging phenomenon but not now. The predecessor of XQD card was memory sticks and compact flash cards.

Definition and Functionality:

The XQD card is none other than a memory card format like others. It is used in digital cameras that make use of HD recording mode. This HD videos or snapshots require quick transfer of data from the imaging device to the memory card. In addition, the storage space required to store HD videos is high. The XQD card provides good data storage size and relatively high-speed transfer for those media files.

Sony first introduced the XQD card. The Compact Flash Association developed and released it in 2011. However, Nikon D4 is first camera device with the XQD card slot.  It uses two different technologies CompactFlash Technology and the PCI express interface technology.
CompactFlash is another mass storage device format implemented for portable electronic devices. The first and foremost technology stores data even without a power supply. Now a new generation has just arrived called CFlast.

The Peripheral Component Interconnect Express (PCI Express) is the interface technology used in XQD card. The PCI Express interfaces have an increased throughput, a lesser pin count and one of the best performance scaling for Bus devices. Because of its high-qualified features the XQD memory card types has a high data transfer rate ranging from 125 Mbps to 500 Mbps.

Regarding the internal design, it is same as the compact Flash type cards. This internal structure uses solid-state technology, NAND and NOR technologies. These technologies uses cell arrays in a group of layers with a device controller. These cells are highly capable of storing data in absence of power source. That is the XQD card will utilize the power when connected with a media device or PC. Because of its high performance and less robustness the lifetime of XQD card is considerably low. Hence, the layered architecture helps to store large volume of data storage at a very low cost. This is why the XQD type cards do not have a fixed data storage range.


Though the XQD type memory cards are excellent in all areas, it bows to SD cards and CFast type memory cards. When the XQD card is compared with SD cards, the SD cards also provides all the chief advantages like size and speed. The physical size and the cost of SD card are negligibly lower than XQD card. So ultimately, the user will prefer the SD card.

The memory cards of CFast technology use SATA and more advanced interfaces for data transfer. In XQD card there is no notable update in the interface so far.

Most of all the XQD type cards are not backward compatible. That means the user using yester years old CF cards cannot update their data and slots for this XQD cards. Incase if anyone try to force update the XQD card with old memories it will fail.

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