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The Best Memory Cards for the Sony A100

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The best Sony A100 CF memory cards

´╗┐The largest CF Card that is fully compatible with the Sony A100 is 32GB. There will likely be compatiblity issues if you use a larger card.

The memory limit is due to the use of the FAT32 file system. The A100 can not format a card to greater than 32GB.

If you are in a rush, my recommended Compact Flash memory card is:

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SanDisk Extreme 32GB CF card
SanDisk Extreme 32GB CF Card
  • Read speeds up to 120MB/s.
  • Write speeds up to 85MB/s.
  • Water, x-ray, & shock proof.
Check prices on: Amazon, Adorama

Best CF Cards

The best value Compact Flash memory card is going to be either 32GB or 16GB. Larger or smaller cards are going to have a worse value per GB.

A pro card is not going to add a large amount to the price. Having a high-speed card will remove the need to replace the card with a camera upgrade.

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SanDisk Extreme 32GB CF card
SanDisk Extreme 32GB Compact Flash Card
  • Read speeds up to 120MB/s.
  • Write speeds up to 85MB/s.
  • Sustained data recording of 20MB/s.
  • Water, x-ray, & shockproof.
Check prices on: Amazon, Adorama

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Transcend 32GB CF Card
Transcend 32GB Compact Flash Card
  • Fast enough write speeds for burst photography and video.
  • Upto 60MB/s write and 120MB/s red speeds.
  • Supports UDMA7 transfer mode.
Check prices on: Amazon, Adorama

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Lexar Professional 1066x 32GB Compact Flash Card
Lexar Professional 1066x 32GB CompactFlash Card
  • Transfer speeds up to 160MB/s.
  • Video Performance Guarantee sepc VPG 65.
  • Limited lifetime warranty.
Check prices on: Amazon, Adorama

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SanDisk Extreme Pro 32GB CompactFlash Card
SanDisk Extreme Pro 32GB CompactFlash Card
  • Transfer speeds up to 160MB/s.
  • Can record 4k Ultra HD and Full HD video.
  • Video Performance Guarantee sepc VPG 65.
  • Limited lifetime warranty.
Check prices on: Amazon, Adorama

Compact Flash Card Types

Compact Flash memory cards come in two physical sizes. The cards are known as Type I or Type II.

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

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

The Type II spec were thicker to allow the use of Microdrives in the Sony A100. A Microdrive was a small mechanical harddrive.

When CF cards were first launched they had high prices and very limited capacities. Microdrives made it possible to have large amounts of storage.

Microdrives are no longer made. Because they were mechanical, failure was a matter of time. So they are nearly impossible to find used.

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

Card Reader

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UGreen Memory Card Reader

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

The UGREEN reader is compatible with USB 3.0. Using the card reader will provide transfer rates that are much faster than what the Sony A100 can achieve.

The reader can read the following 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

Avoiding Card Read Errors

A frequent problems with cameras that use Compact Flash memory cards are damaged card slot pins. If a pin is bent, you could see a ‘unable to use card’ error.

To avoid bending pins, don’t force a CF memory card into the Sony A100. The extra space for a Type II card makes it possible for a CF memory card to be misaligned.

If the CF card will not easily slide into the camera slot, remove it and check the alignment of the memory card. Also, check to see if there is any damage to the card or slot.

If it looks undamaged, carefully align the CF card and make another attempt.