View Full Version : Memory Cards

Marsh Vegas
10-09-2009, 03:04 PM
Is it possible that a card can wear out? I've overwritten many pictures on my card and never really filled it up. I usually take about 20 -25 pictures and then take them from the camera and delete the pictures from the card. So what I'm doing is continually overwriting in the same spot on the card. The reason I ask is that the picture quality seems to have diminished. Could the camera just be getting old?

Canon A85 ( I know, I need to upgrade):)

David Metsky
10-11-2009, 04:00 PM
Memory cards can't have any impact on image quality. If your images are degrading it's because of your camera. What are you seeing different? Can you post some images to compare.

10-11-2009, 05:44 PM
Apparently degraded images may also be the result of viewing them on a better monitor or even using a better video card. You may just be seeing flaws that were always there but you never noticed.

10-12-2009, 04:39 AM
Memory cards do wear out, but with modern cards, it takes over a million writes to do so. In all except the SmartMedia type, clever control circuits include wear levelling functions that ensure you aren't always writing to the same memory cells. You can help by clearing a card by using the Format function in the camera, which clears the card all in one write (over the directory / FAT area), rather than Delete or Delete All functions, which are likely to cause several writes for each file (using Format is also less likely to give you a corrupted card). A worn out card will probably just show "card error" or similar, it's unlikely to allow you to continue to take pictures but give you degraded results.

The problems with image quality you're seeing are likely to be due to wear in the camera, possibly in the focussing drive, though K1w1's suggestion is possible if you've upgraded your computer. It could also be something as simple as a dirty lens.

Marsh Vegas
10-12-2009, 09:41 AM
Thanks for your thoughts. I really need to upgrade especially after viewing some of the exquisite pictures on this forum. I'll try the reformatting anyway.

David Metsky
10-12-2009, 05:04 PM
Reformatting the card is a good idea, but it will have absolutely no impact on your image quality.

James DeRuvo DHQ
10-14-2009, 12:14 AM
Yes, memory cards can wear out. Sooner or later they will go bad. Some sooner than others. I agree though that formatting the card from time to time (every 4th time or so) is a good way to keep it fit. But I'd always have a backup anyway. That way if it goes bad, you can swap one out lickety split and not lose the moment.