Nikon D3000 Memory Card Compatibility & Recommendations

By Nathaniel Stephan
Last Updated: July 26, 2019
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Nikon D3000 Memory Cards

Here you'll find out which SD cards will work with the Nikon D3000. For more info on the D3000, check out the Nikon D3000 Resources page.

If you're in a hurry my here's my recommendation:

SanDisk Extreme Pro 32GB SDHC Memory Card

The absolute best card you can buy for the camera.

64GB or larger cards are not compatible with the camera.

Once you've got your camera working, you might want another lens. Here are the Best Nikon D3000 Lenses.

Best SD Cards

High-quality SD cards are manufactured by SanDisk, Lexar, and PNY. My favorite SD cards are SanDisk Extreme Pro.

I have never had problems such as a card failure or corrupt data when using a SanDisk card. Lexar Professional and PNY Elite Performance cards have also worked well for me.

The few problems I've had with SD cards, was when they were generic cards. Being cheap with a memory card invites future problems that could ruin all the data on the card.

Don't buy cheap cards to save money. Instead, just buy a smaller capacity high-quality card.

Recommended SD Cards

SanDisk Extreme Pro 32GB SDHC Memory Card

  • Best value for the money.
  • Read speeds of up to 95MB/s; write speeds of up to 90MB/s.
  • Shock-proof, temperature-proof, waterproof, and x-ray proof.

SanDisk Ultra 32GB SDHC Memory Card

  • Quick transfer speeds up to 80MB/s.
  • Class 10 rating for Full HD video (1080p).
  • Waterproof, temperature proof, X-ray Proof, magnet-Proof, and shockproof.

Lexar Professional 633X 32GB SDHC UHS-I Memory Card

  • High-speed, Class 10 performance.
  • UHS-I technology for a read transfer speed up to 633x (95MB/s).
  • High-speed file transfer from card to computer to dramatically accelerate workflow.

Nikon D3000 SD Card Compatibility

The D3000 uses SD memory cards. Secure Digital (SD) cards come in 3 different specifications. Each new memory card specification increased the maximum storage capacity of the cards.

All of the cards are compatible with newer cameras and devices. Newer cards can be larger than an older camera, like the D3000, can use.

  • Secure Digital (SD) - Up to 2GB cards will work.
  • Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) - Up to 32GB cards will work.
  • Secure Digital eXtended Capacity (SDXC) - The D3000 cannot use these cards as they are 64GB or larger.

Nikon D3000 Memory Card Full Error

Using a memory card that is larger than 32GB in the D3000 will cause an error. The camera will show that the card is full.

To fix the problem, you need to use an SD card with a capacity of 32GB or smaller.

If you are having issues with a card that is 32GB or smaller, try formatting the card in the camera.

Image Capacity

Below is an estimation of how many large JPEGs can expect to fit on each card capacity.

  • 4GB - 1,160 images
  • 8GB - 2,320 images
  • 16GB - 4,640 images
  • 32GB - 9,280 images

Speed, Class, & UHS Ratings

Card Speed

Speed ratings for SD cards are determined by sequential read and/or write speeds. The speed of the card is important when many images need to be written or read from the card.

Speed Class Rating

Example of where to find SD Card Speed Class
The 10 inside of the C means the card is Class 10.

Sustained write speeds of 2MB, 4MB, 6MB, or 8MB per second means the card has a speed class of 2, 4, 6, or 8. Cards that have write speeds of 10MB/s or faster are rated as Class 10.

Every brand name SD card that you can find for sale today will have a Class 10 rating. You can double-check by looking for a number inside of a C on the label of the card.

Ultra High Speed (UHS)

Example of an SD memory card with a UHS-I rating.
The UHS rating of a card can be determined by a Roman numeral I, II, or III on the label of the card.

The Ultra High Speed (UHS) bus allows for faster data transfer. Like the speed rating, there are different standards. Ratings of UHS-I, UHS-II, and UHS-III, can be found on SDHC and SDXC cards.

To figure out the rating of a card, look at the label. If there is a Roman numeral I, II, or III, that is the UHS rating of your card. The Roman numerals should be close to the SD logo on the label.

Maximum transfer rates are:

  • UHS-I - 104 MB/s
  • UHS-II - 312 MB/s
  • UHS-III - 624 MB/s

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