The best memory cards for the Nikon D800

Nikon D800
Nikon D800

The Nikon D800 / D800e can use both a CompactFlash and an SD card at the same time (Photo: Nikon).

The Nikon D800, with its full format sensor and a resolution of 36 megapixels, is still one of the best DSLR cameras on the market. The D800 has two memory card compartments on the body, one of which can hold the CF cards and the other compartment the SD cards. Thanks to the DualSlot, the D800 can either record on both cards at the same time or use one card as an overflow when the first card is full.

High-speed CF cards (UDMA 7) and SD cards (SD/SDHC/SDXC and UHS-1) can be used as storage media. which memory Cards and which manufacturers are particularly recommendable, I have researched for you:

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CF cards (CompactFlash)

With the CompactFlash cards, the speed is clearly a factor that makes them ideal for fast series recordings and video recording. For example, anyone who shoots series photos for sports photography and likes to record the data in RAW format will know that it depends on the writing speed of the card. The CF memory cards are a good choice in any case, but they are also priced significantly higher than good SD cards and they are not available in the high capacity in which you can get SanDisk SD cards, for example.

The 32 GB, 64 GB and 128 GB CF cards from the manufacturers SanDisk and Lexar, all of which have received top ratings from customers, are nevertheless recommended here. Memory cards from other manufacturers seem to cause problems with the D800. For this reason, you should limit yourself to the manufacturers SanDisk and Lexar with the D800, which are definitely compatible. Personally, I always use SanDisk cards because I haven't had a single failure in many years.

SD cards for the Nikon D800

With SD cards, of course, the following also applies: If you want to record fast image sequences, you should use SDXC cards, as these offer the fastest writing speed. I have filtered for the U3 cards here, as these will not have any problems in future camera models with 4K videos. In terms of memory size, I recommend the 128 GB, because especially with 4K video you come across relatively quickly with the smaller cards as the memory limit.

SDXC cards with U3 classification

If you want to be on the safe side and shy away from the prices of CF cards, you should at least use SDXC cards with Class 10 / U3. That would be the most important cards for the Nikon D800 / D800e from my point of view.

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8 comments

  1. Bjoern Rauhut says:

    Great listing, very helpful. Thanks :-)

  2. Darius says:

    Consider adding a cam for a long time, let's see. Good article!

  3. Karl Berg says:

    Thanks for the helpful listing. If only CF cards weren't so expensive, stick with SD for the first time with the 800E ...

    Greetings KB

  4. Alfred Casett says:

    But it is always worthwhile to buy a Profi D800 or the new D810, it has always been extremely important to buy the right lenses. Anyone who joins professionally or was able to do an apprenticeship as a photographer will stay with Nikon. This also means that it doesn't always have to be the latest camera, BUT depending on the task, you take an older model with you, it's like with analog recordings, because the film had to bring the result.

  5. Hi, great, insightful contribution! Thanks for that! Then I bought a SanDisk Extreme 64 GB SDXC for my Nikon D800E. But now I have the problem that NikonTransfer does not recognize the images on the SD card and thus does not transfer them. Do you have any idea why this could be? PS: The map is set to "unlocked" using the slider. It's definitely not that. When I insert the card into my Fujifilm X-T20, the images can be easily recognized and transferred. Could it be due to Nikon Transfer? I am using the 1.5.2 version ... Thanks and regards! Ralf

  6. Alfred Casett says:

    My suspicion "could" be that you buy a memory card from SaDisk Extreme and make the mistake of using it right away.
    First every new memory card HAS to be formatted, i.e. inserted and formatted. Only then use this card for real photos.

    If you are clever, you can simply take a few test shots and then transfer them to the computer, only then are deleted and reformatted, so you can immediately see whether something is wrong.

    Another note: never simply put memory cards in your pocket, not even in your wallet. I did and there can be dents and then the card can be over. My software: Nikon ViewNX2 / CE +/- DL

    • sir appleot says:

      Hello Alfred! Thanks for your advice. I would have thought the camera would say it can't read the memory card and ask you to format it. At least that has always been the case with my old cameras. But how you do it, it sure is the "safer" way. ;-) LG! Jens

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