by Lyle Smith

Kingston Canvas Go! SD & microSD Card Review

The Kingston Canvas Go! is the mid-range model of their Canvas Class 10 UHS-I U3 SD card line, targeting the needs of professional photographers and those looking to film in 1080P and 4K using devices such as a DSLR, drone, or other SD card action cameras. The Kingston card also offers a huge 512GB capacity model, which is rare among cards in this class.

Performance-wise, Kingston quotes the Canvas Go! SD cards with average speeds that certainly won’t turn any heads (90MB/s read and 45MB/s write). The Samsung PRO lines from a few years back boasted these speeds and are less expensive. However, one thing that sets it apart from the rest is its bundled lifetime warranty, which is pretty rare in the storage, let alone SD, market. The Canvas Go! line also boasts the usual waterproof, shock and vibration, and Temperature and airport X-ray protection.

The Canvas Go! line is available in a range of capacities that include 32GB, 64GB, 128GB, and 512GB with prices ranging from $19.99 to $273 for the SD and $25 to $113 for the microSD. We will be looking at the 64GB (both SD and microSD versions) for this review.

Kingston Canvas Go! Specifications

Capacities 32GB, 64GB, 128GB, 512GB
Performance

90MB/s read and 45MB/s write, UHS-I Speed Class 3 (U3)

Dimensions  24mm x 32mm x 2.1mm
Format FAT32 (SDHC 32GB), exFAT (SDXC 64GB-512GB)
Operating Temperatures -25°C to 85°C
Storage Temperatures -40°C to 85°C
Voltage

3.3V

Warranty Lifetime

Design and Build

Kingston Canvas Go! line features a black case with a sticker that features a blue paint stoke/splash across the capacity size, which fits the target demographic of creative professionals. Also on the sticker are Kingston branding, SD class, and product line name.

On the back side is the standard row of 8 metallic contacts as well as information such as its product number and country of manufacture.

Performance

In this review, we will compare the Kingston Canvas Go! SD and microSD cards to the following other recent SD cards:

We used a HP Z2 mini Workstation for our testing. In 2MB sequential read and write, the Kingston Go! recorded 92.0MB/s and 85.2MB/s, respectively, which was better than the quoted numbers. The microSD version pulled in virtually identical numbers at 92.0MB/s read and 85.6MB/s write. The other Kingston lines posted 93.1MB/s read and 78.6MB/s write for the React and 53.5MB/s read and 15.3MB/s write for the Select (regular SD models). Surprisingly, the Go! almost outperformed the higher-class React in writes and almost matched its read speed.

In the 2MB random speed test, Canvas Go! SD card hit just 71.91MB/s read and 2.55MB/s write, while the microSD version reached 72.1MB/s read and 2.66MB/s write. The React posted 72.4MB/s read and 48.6MB/s write, while the Select hit 49.0MB/s read and 1.5MB/s write for the SD card models. 

For 4K random IOPS transfers, the Kingston SD card reached 2,110.15 IOPS read and 169.37 IOPS write, while the microSD version recorded 2,255.6 IOPS read and 97.02 IOPS write. The Select SD model measured 1,175.6 IOPS read and 18.8 IOPS write while the React SD model hit 1,657.6 IOPS read and 1,366.1 IOPS write.

Looking at the same test but with the microSD form factor, the  Go had perfromances of 92.03MB/s and 85.62MB/s writein 2MB sequential. Select was able to hit 56.7MB/s read and 13.2MB/s write, while the React was able to show 93.12MB/s read and 79.06MB/s write. For 2MB random performance the Go had 72.1MB/s read and 2.66MB/s write. The Select microSD hit 52.21MB/s read and 1.94MB/s write, while the React was able to show 72.36MB/s read and 48.73MB/s write.

For the random 4K transfers with the microSD form factor, we saw the microSD Go hit 2,256 IOPS read and 97 IOPS write. The Select hit 1,658 IOPS read and 104 IOPS write with the React hit 1,649 IOPS read and 1,361 IOPS write.

Conclusion

Targeted towards professional photographers and videographers, the Kingston Go! UHS-I Card offers mid-range performance of 92.0MB/s read and 85.2MB/s write in sequential 2MB transfer speeds, the latter number which was well beyond what was quoted by Kingston. Though Kingston indicates this is the mid-range card of the Canvas line, it did beat out the higher-class React in sequential writes and fell a hair short of matching its read performance throughout our tests. The Go! also has the benefit of offering a 512GB model, which the other two from the Kingston Canvas line do not. Moreover, though it was expected to boast performance slower than professional-grade UHS-II cards in the 2MB transfer tests, it did show comparable performance in our 4K random IOPS benchmark. The Kingston card, however, did not reach the 104MB/s theoretical top speed for UHS-I cards.

As far as pricing goes, the Kingston Go! is $34 for the 64GB model, $67 for the 128GB model, and $277 for 512GB, which works out to approximately $0.53/GB, $0.52/GB, and $0.54/GB respectively. These are very competitive prices. In comparison, the ADATA Premier microSD 128GB model goes for $64 but at much slower sequential transfer rates (60.6MB/s read and 33.41MB/s write).

Bottom Line

Overall, this card will suit the performance needs of most media professionals, offering a good range of capacities (including a 512GB model) at a very competitive price.

Kingston Canvas Go! on Amazon

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