Home Consumer SanDisk Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress VPG400 Type B Review

SanDisk Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress VPG400 Type B Review

by Charles P. Jefferies
SanDisk Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress Type B Front

The Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress VPG400 is SanDisk’s elite CFexpress Type B card, with an advertised 1,400MB/s write and 1,700MB/s read and minimum guaranteed write performance of 400MB/s for seamless 4K and 8K video and burst photography.

The Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress VPG400 is SanDisk’s elite CFexpress Type B card, with an advertised 1,400MB/s write and 1,700MB/s read and minimum guaranteed write performance of 400MB/s for seamless 4K and 8K video and burst photography.

SanDisk Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress VPG400 Type B Specifications

SanDisk’s most elite CFexpress card, the Professional PRO-CINEMA offers SSD-like performance for seamless burst photography and 4K and 8K video. It’s rated for burst speeds of 1,400MB/s write and 1,700MB/s read and has a Video Performance Guarantee of 400MB/s.

SanDisk Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress VPG400 Front

High burst performance and the VPG400 rating puts this card above SanDisk’s Extreme Pro CFexpress, which carries lower 800MB/s write and 1,500MB/s read ratings but no VPG rating, and of course above the lower-tier Extreme Pro CFast 2.0, which offers SATA-like SSD speeds (450MB/s write and 525MB/s read) and has a VPG130 rating. Close competition for the Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress line comes from Lexar’s Professional DIAMOND CFexpress.

Western Digital (parent company of SanDisk) backs the Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress with a lifetime warranty. It also includes a 1-year license for RescuePRO Deluxe data recovery software to help you recover files that were accidentally deleted.

The main drawback this card faces is that it is only available in a 256GB capacity. It retails for $449 (Amazon link). We’d like to see at least a 512GB version as is available in the SanDisk Extreme Pro CFexpress line. The full specifications of this card are as follows:

Capacities 256GB
Dimensions (LWH) 1.5 x 1.17 x 0.15 in / 38 x 29.6 x 3.8mm
Weight 0.03 lbs / 0.013 kg
Host Requirements Host Supporting CFexpress Type B
In The Box
  • PRO-CINEMA CFexpress® VPG400 Type B Card
  • RescuePRO Deluxe Free 1 year download
Warranty Lifetime limited

The SanDisk Professional PRO-CINEMA CFExpress has standard CFexpress Type B measurements of 1.5 x 1.17 x 0.15 inches. The top of the card clearly states the card brand, model, and capacity, and has an arrow for insertion direction.

SanDisk Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress Type B Front

Meanwhile, the card’s rear has regulatory branding.

SanDisk Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress VPG400 Type B Performance

We tested the Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress card in a BlackJet TX-1CXQ Thunderbolt 3 CFexpress Type-B card reader. The 256GB model we’re testing is the only available size.

Our testing starts with the popular Blackmagic Disk Speed Test. The card, unfortunately, didn’t behave as expected, especially in write, where we observed the card hanging around 1GB/s before leveling out at 515.5MB/s write and 1,213.3MB/s read. By comparison, the Lexar Professional DIAMOND CFexpress showed 1,500.7MB/s write and 1,549.5MB/s read and the SanDisk Extreme Pro CFExpress 1,060.1MB/s write and 1,425MB/s read.

SanDisk Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress Type B Blackmagic

Our last test is IOMeter, where we tested the Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress in both single-thread and four-thread workloads. In the 1-thread test, it proved a nearly equal match to the Lexar Professional DIAMOND CFexpress in read though it was slightly behind that card in write.

IOMeter (1-Thread)
Test SanDisk Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress Lexar Professional DIAMOND CFexpress SanDisk Extreme Pro CFexpress
2MB sequential write 871.4MB/s 1,256MB/s 965.7MB/s
2MB sequential read 1,091.8MB/s 1,385.4MB/s 1,086MB/s
2MB random write 341.0MB/s 1,130MB/s 397.4MB/s
2MB random read 972.3MB/s 1,204.1MB/s 1,036.7MB/s
4K random write 2,985 IOPS 14,897 IOPS 3,145 IOPS
4K random read 10,785 IOPS 4,328 IOPS 10,768 IOPS

The Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress showed better performance in the heavier 4-thread workload and outdid the SanDisk Extreme Pro CFexpress, though the Lexar Professional DIAMOND CFexpress wasn’t to be caught and dominated the charts.

IOMeter (4-Thread)
Test SanDisk Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress Lexar Professional DIAMOND CFexpress SanDisk Extreme Pro CFexpress
2MB sequential write 1,276.5MB/s 1,599.9MB/s 1,270.9MB/s
2MB sequential read 1,320.9MB/s 1,767.5MB/s 1,223.7MB/s
2MB random write 392.4MB/s 759.4MB/s 362.4MB/s
2MB random read 1,306MB/s 1,552.4MB/s 1,213.8MB/s
4K random write 8,705 IOPS 14,913 IOPS 8,289 IOPS
4K random read 40,332 IOPS 54,167 IOPS 40,390 IOPS

Conclusion

Though the SanDisk Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress Type B showed good stamina in our benchmarks, its performance didn’t match that of our top pick, the Lexar Professional DIAMOND CFexpress. The SanDisk card didn’t hit its rated speeds in Blackmagic but its numbers were consistent in IOMeter. That said, it did surpass its guaranteed 400MB/s figure.

In IOMeter 4-thread, the top numbers we saw from this card were 1,276.5MB/s in 2MB sequential write and 1,320.9MB/s in 2MB sequential read. SanDisk’s own Extreme Pro CFexpress Type B card proved an equal or better performer in most instances, though it doesn’t carry a VPG rating like the Professional PRO-CINEMA CFexpress Type B.

Overall, though this card’s performance won’t disappoint its professional audience, its $449 retail for 256GB is too expensive while the Lexar Professional DIAMOND CFexpress goes for $379. Lexar is a better overall performer as well and carries a lifetime warranty like the SanDisk. To be fair though, the card hits its minimum write performance guarantee, being able to suck in anything a camera throws at it, so SanDisk diehards should still be happy with the card, if not the price.

Western Digital Store Product Link

Engage with StorageReview

Newsletter | YouTube | Podcast iTunes/Spotify | Instagram | Twitter | TikTok | RSS Feed