Pentax *ist DS Memory Card Compatibility

Pentax *ist DS SD Memory Card Compatibility

The Pentax *ist DS uses SD memory cards. 32GB is the maximum capacity SD card that will work in the *ist DS.

SD memory cards labeled as SDUC or SDXC are not going to work in the *ist DS. These cards will be At least 64GB or larger, so they are simple to avoid.

The SDHC format was announced in 2006. All 32GB cards that are currently being produced will have almost identical performance. You cannot go wrong buying the cheapest class 10 name brand card. At the time of writing this, the PNY Elite 32GB SD memory card has the best price.

Listed below are some options to select from that will work correctly in the *ist DS. With all of the cards listed below, you won’t have to be worried about sluggish capabilities or SD memory card failure.

PNY Elite 32GB SD Card
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  • Sequential read speed of up to 100MB/s
  • Class 10, U1 rating delivers speed and performance for full HD photography and HD videography.
  • V10 video speed rating to capture uninterrupted HD video at 1920x1080 format
  • Compatible with point & shoot cameras, DSLR cameras, standard & advanced HD-enabled video cameras, and more
  • Reliable & Durable: Magnet Proof, Shock Proof, Temperature Proof, Waterproof

SanDisk Ultra 32GB SD Card
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  • Quick transfer read speeds up to 90MB/s.
  • Write speeds are not capable of recording 4k video.
  • Class 10 rating for Full HD video (1080p).
  • Waterproof, temperature proof, X-ray Proof, magnet-Proof, and shockproof.

Samsung EVO Plus 32GB SD Card
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  • UHS Speed Class 1 (U1) supports Full HD video and burst shots. 130MB/s transfer speeds1 let you upload footage to your PC in an instant.
  • Built to survive tough conditions and heavy usage, whether you’re at home, outside, or on the go. Backed by 10-year limited warranty.
  • Highly durable with comprehensive 7-proof protection.
  • Backed by a 10 year warranty.

Best SD Cards

SanDisk, PNY, Samsung, and Lexar both make first-class memory cards. Inexpensive third party brand names ought to be avoided.

Memory card failures, for example a loss of all your shots due to data corruption, is more probable to take place with cheap cards. An insignificant amount of cost savings is not worth the reduction in build quality.

In a situation where you want to save a little bit of money, get a memory card with a reduced capacity. They may be a little more affordable and you won’t need to be concerned about the SD card losing your images.

Even then, SD card problems are uncommon. In my time, I have only experienced a couple of cards fail. Age may have played a role, as the SD cards were included with previously owned digital point & shoots.

Pentax *ist DS SD Card Compatibility

Currently, 4 different technical specs of Secure Digital (SD) cards are currently being made. The Pentax *ist DS is limited to using SD memory cards. The benefit is that there is a boost in the max capacity and read/write speeds with the introduction of every updated specification.

Secure Digital memory card readers are backward compatible. A card reader built into a digital camera that can use SDXC cards will also be able to use SDHC and SD memory cards.

The Pentax *ist DS’s card reader can only read the original two SD card standards. SDXC or SDUC SD memory cards are not going to work.

  • Secure Digital (SD) - These memory cards have a maximum capacity of 2GB and are compatible with the *ist DS.
  • Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) - The capacity of these memory cards range from 4GB to 32GB and are also compatible with the *ist DS.
  • Secure Digital eXtended Capacity (SDXC) - The capacity of these memory cards range from 64GB to 2TiB.
  • Secure Digital Ultra Capacity (SDUC) - The capacity of these memory cards range from 4TiB to 128TiB.

Pentax *ist DS Memory Card Full Error

SD Card Contacts

Trying to use a memory card that is 64GB or larger in the *ist DS results in the point and shoot camera to show an error.

Use an SD memory card which has a capacity of 32GB or smaller to resolve the problem.

If you have an SD memory card that is 32GB or a smaller capacity, and the card is not working, try to format the card in the camera.

Speed, Class, & Capacity

SD Card Image Capacity

Here is an estimation of how many large JPEGs you can expect to keep on an SD memory card.

  • 4GB - 1920 images
  • 8GB - 3840 images
  • 16GB - 7680 images
  • 32GB - 15360 images

Memory Card Speed

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

SD Card Speed Class Rating

SD Card Speed Class

The Class speed rating of an SD memory card is dependant on the sustained write speed of the memory card. A Class speed rating of 2 means that the SD card can sustain a write speed of at least 2MB per second.

  • Class 2 - 2MB/s
  • Class 4 - 4MB/s
  • Class 6 - 6MB/s
  • Class 8 - 8MB/s
  • Class 10 - 10MB/s

The maximum rating an SD memory card can attain is Class 10. There are memory cards that are a good deal faster than 10MB/s. Those SD memory cards use other solutions, such as UHS (Ultra Highspeed Bus), that have a separate rating criteria.

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.


Buy an SD memory card for the Pentax *ist DS based on price. An expensive card isn’t going to improve performance. As long as it is a speed class 10 card, you will be fine. My recommendation is the PNY Elite 32GB SD memory card.