Best Nikon D3X SD Memory Cards

The Nikon D3X uses Compact Flash memory cards. 64GB is the max card storage capacity that is compatible with the camera.

A card bigger than 64GB will not be recognized or the D3X will display an error message.

SanDisk Extreme Pro CF 64GB
SanDisk Extreme Pro CF 64GB
  • Records and captures cinema quality 4K and Full HD video.
  • Transfer speed of up to 160MB/s (1067X) read speeds.
  • Industry leading shot speed performance of up to 150MB/s (1000X) write speeds.
  • Designed for professional photographers and videographers

See current price and more information on:

Amazon KEH

SanDisk Extreme 64GB CompactFlash Card
SanDisk Extreme 64GB CompactFlash Card
  • Write speeds of up to 85 MB/s for faster shot-to-shot performance.
  • Transfer speeds of up to 120 MB/s for increased efficiency.
  • Video Performance (VPG-20) for Full HD video recording.
  • RTV silicone coating protects card from shock and vibration.

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Amazon KEH

Lexar Professional CF Card 64GB
Lexar Professional CF Card 64GB
  • High speed performance—leverages UDMA 7 technology to deliver a read speed up to 1066x (160MB/s).
  • Supports the VPG-65 specification for professional-quality video.
  • Captures high-quality images and extended lengths of stunning 1080p Full-HD, 3D, and 4K video.
  • High-speed file transfer to dramatically accelerate workflow.

See current price and more information on:

Amazon KEH

No, you can use the camera with just one card. Using two cards gives you more options.

  • Mirror the Cards. Both memory cards will have the same files written to them.
  • Overflow. Once the first card is full, files will be written to the second card.
  • RAW+JPEG. Raw files will be written to one card and JPEGs of the same images will be written to the second card.

No, memory cards can be different. You can use cards that have different sizes.

Having both CF cards be identical helps to prevent potential compatibility concerns. As an example, one slow Compact Flash can bottleneck the camera’s buffer.

CF cards come in two sizes. The CF cards are known as Type I or Type II.

The difference between the types is the thickness of the cards. The length and width of the cards are identical.

  • Type I - 3.3mm thick
  • Type II - 5mm thick

The Type II spec was thicker to allow Microdrives to be used in the Nikon D3X. A Microdrive was a tiny mechanical harddrive, the size of a compact flash card.

When Compact Flash cards were first introduced they had high prices and very limited storage capacities. Microdrives were the only solution to have large storage sizes.

Microdrives are no longer manufactured. Because they were mechanical, they often failed. So they are almost impossible to find used.

SD to Compact Flash card adapters also take advantage of Type II sized slots. The adapters allow you to use SD or Micro SD cards in a Compact Flash slot.

UGreen Memory Card Reader
UGreen Memory Card Reader

The UGREEN 4-in-1 card reader is what I use with my CF cards.

The UGREEN card reader is USB 3.0 compatible. Using the card reader will provide transfer rates that are much faster than what the Nikon D3X is capable of.

The reader can read these memory card types:

  • CompactFlash Cards
  • SD, SDHC, & SDXC Cards
  • Memory Stick (MS), MS Pro, MS PRO-HG, & MS XC DUO
  • MicroSD, Micro SDHC, & Micro SDXC Cards

A common errors with cameras that use CF memory cards are bent card slot pins. When a pin is bent, you could see a ‘unable to use card’ error.

To avoid damaged pins, do not force a Compact Flash memory card into the Nikon D3X. The extra space for a Type II card makes it possible for a Compact Flash card to be out of alignment.

If the CF card will not effortlessly slide into the camera slot, take it out and check the alignment of the memory card. Also, check to see if these is any damage to the memory card.

If it looks undamaged, carefully align the compact flash card and try again.