Which cards can you use?
Here are all Nikon D-SLRs launched since 2005 – and the memory card formats and types they use
You can find more information about your specific camera’s requirements in your manual, but here we’ve listed a relatively limited number of brands and card sizes as a guide. Don’t worry if you’ve got something different. There may be rare incompatibilities, but in general one brand works just as well as another. It’s hard to offer concrete advice about memory card sizes. The manual will list sizes available at the time the camera was released, but higher-capacity cards released later should work too. The manual only lists cards which have been tested by Nikon.
Compact Flash Type I cards are 3.5mm thick and are still used today. Newer cards and cameras use the faster UDMA interface for higher transfer speeds. Compact Flash cards come in many capacities – in 2013, SanDisk launched a 256GB card.
Compact Flash Type II cards were 5mm thick and are no longer supported by modern Nikon D-SLRs – the last model to support them was the D3x, which was released in 2008. Most Type II CF cards were ‘MicroDrives’ – tiny spinning hard disk drives in a CF-sized case.
SD cards are the oldest and least powerful SD card type, with a maximum capacity of 2Gb. You can still use SD cards in modern digital cameras, but their low capacity limits their usefulness. As a result, standard SD cards are rarely seen now – SDHC is the new norm.
SD HC cards are a faster, highercapacity replacement for the SD format. Card sizes go up to 32Gb, with card speeds up to Class 10 and UHS-I. You can only use SDHC cards in cameras that support them – and happily, all Nikon D-SLRs released since 2006 support SDHC.
SDXC cards offer higher capacities even than SDHC, starting at 64GB and going up to a theoretical maximum of 2TB. SDXC cards typically come with a UHS-1 speed rating. You can only use SDXC cards in cameras that support them. This includes cameras from 2010 on.
The new XQD format is designed for high capacities and high data transfer speeds. So far, the professionalstandard D4 and D4s are the only cameras to use this new card format. It offers capacities in excess of 2Tb and potential transfer speeds of 125-500GB per second.