by Lyle Smith

Samsung 64GB SD PRO Memory Card (MB-SG64D)

The Samsung Pro SD family is one of the newly launched lines of advanced SD and microSD cards that were announced in April of this year, all of which are designed specifically for high end digital imaging and mobile devices. The new cards, which are available in PRO, EVO and Standard categories, cater towards different use cases and performance levels for both consumers and professionals. The Pro line supports Ultra High Speed (UHS-I) Class 1 level performance and quoted to offer read speeds up to 90MB/s and writes of 50MB/s, respectively.

Our review of the previous iteration of Samsung’s Pro line posted some pretty impressive results; this time around the Pro line uses MLC NAND. The high quality NAND gives it a significant advantage in both performance and endurance as most flash devices like this are TLC and are generally made from the lowest cost NAND available. 

Samsung has designed their new cards to be water, temperature, X-ray, and magnet proof. This allows them to withstand some of the more harsh conditions that workers on the go might experience. All of models are also guaranteed to last up to 24 hours in seawater as well as enduring operating temperatures from -13°F to 185°F and non-operating temperatures from -40°F to 185°F (-25°C to 85°C and -40°C to 85°C, respectively). In addition, data on the cards will not be affected by X-rays, can resist up to 15,000 gauss magnetic force, and can withstand the weight of a 1.9 ton vehicle. These cards are built to withstand today's rigors. 

The Samsung SD Pro line comes in capacities of 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB and are priced at $24.99, $39.99 and $69.99 respectively. All cards are inclusive of a limited 10-year warranty. Our review unit is the 64GB capacity.

Specifications:

  • Product Type: SDHC
  • Family Line: PRO
  • Compatible Device: Digital SLR, 3D Video
  • Capacity:
    • 16GB (MB-SG16D/AM) 
    • 32GB (MB-SG32D/AM)
    • 64GB (MB-SG64D/AM)
  • Specification: SD 3.0
  • Interface: UHS-1, compatible to HS interface
  • Dimension: 5.4 x 3.5 x 0.1 inches
  • Weight: 1.6 ounces
  • Performance
    • Read: up to 90MB/s
    • Write: up to 50MB/s
  • Speed Class: Grade 1, Class 10
  • Operating Voltage: 2.7 ~ 3.6V
  • Storage Temperature: -40°C to -85°C
  • Operating Temperature: -25°C to -85°C
  • Humidity: 40°C, 93%, 500 hours (storage)
  • Durability: 10000 mating cycles
  • Warranty: Limited 10 years

Design and build

Samsung’s entire family of memory cards have newly designed exteriors and branding. The Pro line has a slick looking white casing, with distinctly printed white numbers that indicate the capacity; in our case, 64GB. The Samsung logo is nicely placed at the top. Also located on the front side is the speed class designation and SD card type. Not that they'll be seen often, but these are very nice looking cards that stand out from the typical black shell design.

On the side, is a sliding lock mechanism for data protection, with the Lock indicator located on the front side. On the back side you will see the 9 connector pins as well as the model number. It also indicates that the cards were made in Korea and designed by Samsung.

Performance

In this review, we will include the following comparables with their respective advertised performance numbers:

Using our Consumer Testing Platform, we measured transfer speeds from the Samsung 64GB Pro SDHC, which boasted Sequential read speeds of 87.4MB/s, while write activity hit 75.8MB/s, pretty close to what Samsung quoted for read activity, though the write speed outperformed by a significant margin. Compared to its predecessor, the previous version of the Samsung Pro hit sequential read speeds at 75.2MB/s, while write activity hit 38.1MB/s. The new card shows substantial gains thanks in large part to the flash used. For the 64GB Kingston SDXC, sequential read speeds measured 89.6MB/s, while write activity hit 59MB/s. The Komputerbay 128GB SDXC card posted read/write speeds of 81.3MB/s/58.3MB/s. The Lexar Professional 600x SDXC posted very respectable numbers with 81.3MB/s read and 44.3MB/s write.

Switching to random large-block transfers, we measured 81.6MB/s read and a much lower 18.1MB/s write. The prior Samsung SDXC Pro Series posted a score of 67.5MB/s read and 7.0MB/s write. As for the other comparables, the 64GB Kingston SDXC boasted 86.8MB/s read and 11.2MB/s write while the Komputerbay SDXC 128GB card measured 79.2MB/s read with a write speed of 10.3MB/s. The Le75.8xar Professional marked in with an activity of 79.6MB/s read and 10.8MB/s write.

Conclusion

The new SD Samsung Pro Series line is designed for photographers and enthusiasts who use high end digital imaging and mobile devices and require superior performance from their flash cards. The Pro Series SDHC cards come in three different capacities, 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB in order cater towards different needs and use cases of consumers. As far as design goes, the Samsung Pro series really stands out from its competing SD cards with its attractive white and silver body. The device also feels pretty sturdy and rugged in our hands, despite its small size. This rugged little beast is also water, shock, magnet, X-ray and temperature proof to boot, which is a very welcomed feature for those who do a lot of work on the go.

Not only does the Samsung SDHC Pro Series line have a superior look-and-feel compared to most SD cards on the market, the new Pro 64GB quotes an impressive 90MB/s read and 50MB/s write activity, sporting a UHS Speed Class 1 and Class 10 video recording ratings. This is ideal for ensuring that users will have optimal read and writes even with HD video. As for how the Samsung SD card actually performed in our benchmark tests, it pretty much delivered on its claimed performance and then some. We measured 81.6MB/s read and 18.1MB/s write in our random large-block transfers tests, while sequential activity boasted an impressive 87.4MB/s read and 75.8MB/s write, the latter of which outperformed its quoted specs by a significant margin. This is definitely a top of its class SD card, showing big gains over the prior Pro cards.

What also impressed us is the cost of the Samsung Pro line, which goes for only $70 for the 64GB model and $25/$40 for the 16GB/32GB capacities. Comparatively speaking this is about the lowest priced card from a well-known brand name. Samsung appears to be intent to change the market with flash media cards the way they've done with SSDs by providing exceedingly good performance and market leading price point. 

Pros

  • Solid, sleek design
  • Bar setting performance in a few performance categories
  • Great price

Cons

  • None

Bottom line

The new Samsung Pro SD line offers class-leading performance and pricing, netting a supurb SD card. Enthusiasts need look no further than the Pro for photography, video and other portable recording/storage needs. 

Samsung 64GB SD PRO Memory Cards at Amazon

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