AGFA SD card - Palmtop

This is a discussion on AGFA SD card - Palmtop ; Hi there, Our "Big W" store ("Wal-Mart") sells Sandisk Standard SD 256MB cards on special for AU$42 (US$32) -- this is the one I got. But I also saw that they started to sell SD cards by AGFA. The 256MB ...

+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 22

Thread: AGFA SD card

  1. AGFA SD card

    Hi there,

    Our "Big W" store ("Wal-Mart") sells Sandisk Standard SD 256MB cards on

    special for AU$42 (US$32) -- this is the one I got. But I also saw that

    they started to sell SD cards by AGFA. The 256MB card is labelled to
    have an "average transfer speed of 45x" (i.e., 7MB/s), "made in Japan
    or Taiwan" and goes for AU$45 (US$34). Thaaaat should be a better deal.

    However, is the card good ? If it is good, why do they sell it cheaply
    ?

    I did a search on the Internet for AGFA SD card, and it turned up
    single results.The packed card in the store definetely did not look
    like it was
    made by Toshiba. Well, I thought, it could be made by Panasonic -- and
    this
    would be great as Panasonic had a better reputation for performance and

    speed. But I was confused by the card's yellow lock like Toshibas have.

    Panasonic usually puts a white lock (and Sandisk usually puts a grey
    one). The Internet search turned up that AGFA put its label on Toshiba
    cards as well (with no speed marking on packaging), but it was not the
    case in here.

    I contacted AGFA (www.agfa.com), and they told me that they sold their
    consumer digital photography business to AGFA Photo
    (www.agfaphoto.com). AGFA Photo says on their website that they are in
    the process of closing and selling out their remaining stock. This
    means that I would probably not be able to use their 5-year warranty as

    there could well be nobody to return the card to. Perhaps, this is why
    our store sells their card too cheap as compared to Sandisk. (I
    contacted the Sandisk Technical Support, and they told me that the
    transfer speed of their SD cards was up to 2.8 MB/s (19x) by design,
    but could be as low as 1.5 MB/s (10x) depending on a particular chip.
    Earlier, I switched from a Toshiba SD card with a spec read/write speed

    of 7MBps/2MBps to Sandisk SD card with the spec speed of
    2.8MBps/2.8MBps. I wanted to get an increase in the write speed, but it

    appeared that both cards had a write speed of around 1-1.5MB/s.)

    So, by the end of the day, I decided to stay with the card I got, that
    is Sandisk. I am tired of switching the cards. There are other things
    which I value in the card besides its speed (the speed in all of these
    cards satisfies my bare minimum requirements) . I value reliability,
    and I
    like the feeling of holding a neatly-made card. In the store, I cannot
    have a look at an unpacked AGFA card. I decided the gain in the speed
    would not be enough to justify the potential troubles.

    If someone wants to comment on this, I would be glad to hear your
    opinions.

    Regards
    D.


  2. Re: AGFA SD card

    >> for AU$42 (US$32) <<

    That seems high.

    You might look around a bit more... here (usa) Fry's
    (http://Outpost.com) was selling 1gig high speed SD cards for US$50

    Beverly Howard [MS MVP-Mobile Devices]

  3. Re: AGFA SD card


    Beverly Howard [Ms-MVP/MobileDev] wrote:
    > >> for AU$42 (US$32) <<

    >
    > That seems high.
    >
    > You might look around a bit more... here (usa) Fry's
    > (http://Outpost.com) was selling 1gig high speed SD cards for US$50


    Manufactured goods are more expensive in Australia than in the US by a
    factor of 1.3-1.5. One could buy a 1-GB (10MB/s-fast) card for AU$150
    which corresponds to a US-normal price of US$75 (taking into account
    the 1.5x factor). Still expensive... but what can you do... except
    buying in on-line shops overseas. I do not want to do it with the
    purchase of my first card.

    D.


  4. Re: AGFA SD card

    drocillo wrote:
    > Beverly Howard [Ms-MVP/MobileDev] wrote:
    >
    >>>>for AU$42 (US$32) <<

    >>
    >>That seems high.
    >>
    >>You might look around a bit more... here (usa) Fry's
    >>(http://Outpost.com) was selling 1gig high speed SD cards for US$50


    I just bought one a couple of days ago--ATP brand, 80x (12MB/s), made
    in Taiwan--$60 in the store with a $10 rebate.

    > Manufactured goods are more expensive in Australia than in the US by a
    > factor of 1.3-1.5. One could buy a 1-GB (10MB/s-fast) card for AU$150
    > which corresponds to a US-normal price of US$75 (taking into account
    > the 1.5x factor). Still expensive... but what can you do... except
    > buying in on-line shops overseas. I do not want to do it with the
    > purchase of my first card.


    I thought you already had a card...

    Cheap is good. Low cash risk, potential great deal.
    Take chances! Enjoy life!

    -michael

    Home page: http://members.aol.com/MJMahon/

    "The wastebasket is our most important design
    tool--and it is seriously underused."

  5. Re: AGFA SD card


    Michael J. Mahon wrote:

    > I thought you already had a card...


    Yes, I already got a card and am using it. However, I am thinking about
    the possibility to take it back to the store, and get another, better
    card.

    D.


  6. Re: AGFA SD card


    Paul in Toronto wrote:

    > For the most part, a card is a card. Just buy the highest capacity card
    > available at the best price and have done with it.


    Today I went to the "Big W" store ("Wal-Mart") with the view to have a
    look at the AGFA SD card again. It looked neat, and looked like it was
    manufactured by Panasonic, so that I got an impulse to buy it now, and
    to return my Sandisk card later. The shop assistant explained me that I
    can bring the card back if it gets faulty within 1 year; and beyond
    that, in order to use the 5-year warranty, I have to contact the
    manufacturer. I did not buy the card. I came home, and checked the AGFA
    Photo's website -- indeed, they closed and are now under
    administration. This must be why this 45x-fast card was selling so
    cheap (though, not peanuts yet) ! The owners of AGFA cards will not be
    able to use their 5-year warranties because the company went out of
    business.

    This made me thinking -- do I want a (rather) good card which may
    become faulty and I will not be able to return it beyond 1 year, or do
    I want a Santurd which I can return within 5 years if faulty. So I
    decided to keep Santurd. Do you guys have any particular opinions about
    it ?

    D.


  7. Re: AGFA SD card

    "drocillo" writes:
    > This made me thinking -- do I want a (rather) good card which may
    > become faulty and I will not be able to return it beyond 1 year, or do
    > I want a Santurd which I can return within 5 years if faulty. So I
    > decided to keep Santurd. Do you guys have any particular opinions about
    > it ?

    Most thing tend to go wrong in the first few weeks, and I certainly never buy
    a 5 year warranty on anything.

    If it is a good price then I would go for it.

    My 5p
    Phil


  8. Re: AGFA SD card


    Phil wrote:

    > Most thing tend to go wrong in the first few weeks, and I certainly never buy
    > a 5 year warranty on anything.
    >
    > If it is a good price then I would go for it.


    OK, here is the question (to everyone) -- if the company (which gave
    the 5-year warranty) closes, who will honour this warranty ? What is
    the procedure ? According to the Agfa Sd card manufacturer, some parts
    of the business are announced insolvent (and closed, I presume), and
    some other parts are sold off,
    http://www.agfaphoto.com/en-GB/about/index.html .
    Do I send my card (if it is broken) to the new business who bought the
    SD card business from AGFA Photo ??

    D.


  9. Re: AGFA SD card

    drocillo wrote:
    > Phil wrote:
    >
    >
    >>Most thing tend to go wrong in the first few weeks, and I certainly never buy
    >>a 5 year warranty on anything.
    >>
    >>If it is a good price then I would go for it.

    >
    >
    > OK, here is the question (to everyone) -- if the company (which gave
    > the 5-year warranty) closes, who will honour this warranty ? What is
    > the procedure ? According to the Agfa Sd card manufacturer, some parts
    > of the business are announced insolvent (and closed, I presume), and
    > some other parts are sold off,
    > http://www.agfaphoto.com/en-GB/about/index.html .
    > Do I send my card (if it is broken) to the new business who bought the
    > SD card business from AGFA Photo ??


    Don't worry about it. If it works for 5 weeks, it will work
    for 5 years.

    You really do worry too much!

    Take pictures! Enjoy your camera!

    -michael

    Home page: http://members.aol.com/MJMahon/

    "The wastebasket is our most important design
    tool--and it is seriously underused."

  10. Re: AGFA SD card


    "drocillo" wrote in message
    news:1139017260.788753.67730@o13g2000cwo.googlegro ups.com...
    >
    > Phil wrote:
    >
    >> Most thing tend to go wrong in the first few weeks, and I certainly never
    >> buy
    >> a 5 year warranty on anything.
    >>
    >> If it is a good price then I would go for it.

    >
    > OK, here is the question (to everyone) -- if the company (which gave
    > the 5-year warranty) closes, who will honour this warranty ? What is
    > the procedure ? According to the Agfa Sd card manufacturer, some parts
    > of the business are announced insolvent (and closed, I presume), and
    > some other parts are sold off,
    > http://www.agfaphoto.com/en-GB/about/index.html .
    > Do I send my card (if it is broken) to the new business who bought the
    > SD card business from AGFA Photo ??
    >
    > D.
    >


    You can email a newsgroup and ask the general population but you can't email
    the people involved (Agfa) and ask them? It would seem that they would be
    far more likely to know than people who read newsgroup messages.



  11. Re: AGFA SD card


    Alan wrote:

    > You can email a newsgroup and ask the general population but you can't email
    > the people involved (Agfa) and ask them? It would seem that they would be
    > far more likely to know than people who read newsgroup messages.


    I had emailed to AGFA, and they referred me to AGFA Photo. The AGFA
    Photo states on their website that they are: (i) being liquidated; (ii)
    cannot answer questions by email. One is davised to contact them via
    fax or phone at an expense of EU$0.12 per minute. I do not think I
    would get a good ROI by phoning them.

    I made a search on the Google's Usenet archive, and I found a shorth
    thread in German language where they guy asked how to explain the
    difference in speed between the AGFA SD card and Sandisk SD card. (Just
    the question I was inetersted in !) He implied that both of them were
    cheap kind of cards, so one should get a better brand cards if one
    wanted a speedy performance.

    D.


  12. Re: AGFA SD card


    "drocillo" wrote in message
    news:1139075556.905747.143690@o13g2000cwo.googlegr oups.com...
    >
    > Alan wrote:
    >
    >> You can email a newsgroup and ask the general population but you can't
    >> email
    >> the people involved (Agfa) and ask them? It would seem that they would be
    >> far more likely to know than people who read newsgroup messages.

    >
    > I had emailed to AGFA, and they referred me to AGFA Photo. The AGFA
    > Photo states on their website that they are: (i) being liquidated; (ii)
    > cannot answer questions by email. One is davised to contact them via
    > fax or phone at an expense of EU$0.12 per minute. I do not think I
    > would get a good ROI by phoning them.
    >
    > I made a search on the Google's Usenet archive, and I found a shorth
    > thread in German language where they guy asked how to explain the
    > difference in speed between the AGFA SD card and Sandisk SD card. (Just
    > the question I was inetersted in !) He implied that both of them were
    > cheap kind of cards, so one should get a better brand cards if one
    > wanted a speedy performance.
    >
    > D.
    >


    Write to the liquidators and ask them.



  13. Re: AGFA SD card

    drocillo wrote:

    > ...The strong reason
    > for buying Transcend is that it is made by the SLC technology (and not
    > MLC). This means it can be rewritten 100,000 times, while the cheap
    > Sandisks (made by MLC) can be rewritten only 10,000 times, the data
    > fade away longer, and the card can be stressed mechanically to a
    > greater degree.


    Flash memory re-write ratings are for re-writing the same block.
    Devices that use flash memory use drivers that continually reassign
    physical blocks, so that wear is not concentrated in, say, the blocks
    allocated to the FAT.

    The net effect is that re-write specs are only interesting when almost
    the entire card is being re-written for the maximum number of times.

    This is very unlikely to happen in photographic applications, since
    a card is very seldom "recycled" in its entirety more than once a day,
    and 10,000 such cycles would correspond to continuous use for over 25
    years!

    Multi-level chips ar half the size of single-level chips for a given
    capacity, so their physical durability should be substantially greater.

    I haven't the faintest idea where you would get actual data on physical
    durability, nor why you would care, given the excellent cumulative
    experience of millions of users over several years' use.

    > Transcend should be more reliable, although the chips
    > are made by Korean Samsung which does not have good reputation as the
    > other manufacturing plant in Japan. Transcend used to be just rebadged
    > MLC Toshibas, but in 2003 or so they designed their own controllers for
    > the card, and make them by SLC. The card still have the look and feel
    > of Taiwan-made Toshiba (i.e. does not look as neat as Japan-made
    > Toshiba or even Sandisk). I was able to register my Agfa card at the
    > Transcend website by its serial number -- and the card was recognised
    > by the Transcend as having a 4.5 year warranty ! (Though, I must
    > confess, I am still not sure which card will be more reliable over a
    > long time -- a SLC (!) Transcend, or MLC Sandisk [the latter being a
    > less reliable MLC-type, but their manufacturing process should be
    > perfected because of long history and high volume]).


    Cumulative good experience is a good measure of the dependability of
    a product. With this as a guide, one must conclude that--neglecting
    the occasional lightning strike or "pilot error"--flash memory cards
    of all stripes are fundamentally reliable and well suited for the
    applictions for which they are designed.

    As with all other semiconductor products, warranties are essentially
    irrelevant. Reliability is *excellent*, the tiny fraction of failures
    are almost all "infant mortality", and warranty duration will never be
    tested.

    -michael

    Home page: http://members.aol.com/MJMahon/

    "The wastebasket is our most important design
    tool--and it is seriously underused."

  14. speed measured (Was: Re: AGFA SD card)

    Michael J. Mahon wrote:

    > This is very unlikely to happen in photographic applications, since
    > a card is very seldom "recycled" in its entirety more than once a day,
    > and 10,000 such cycles would correspond to continuous use for over 25
    > years!


    I got this information from the primer on MLC/SLC,
    http://www.memorynet.co.uk/info/faq-...vel-cell.shtml
    .. My understanding is that the cell in the SLC card can assume either
    of its two states -- either there is a charge in the cell, or there
    isn't. The MLC card has its cell in either of the 4 states -- the cell
    can containeither of the four intermediate amounts of electrical charge
    (the full charge, two thirds of a full charge, one third of a full
    charge, and no charge). Such an "analogous" arrangement in MLC is less
    reliable (it is more susceptible to an external electrical field which
    can easier discharge the cell and switch it in another of the 4
    states). Over time, the charge in a cell can dissipate either
    naturally, or helped with external electrical field or when been put
    through X-Ray machine in airport. The distinction between the 4 charged
    levels in a MLC card is less than the difference between the
    charged/not charged state in SLC card. It is easier for a cell in an
    MLC card to switch sporadically into another state out of the four
    possible states. So, it may still be beneficial to get an SLC card.
    Less probability of arbitrary corruption of memory.

    I got an external SD card reader (Sandisk's ImageMate 8-in-1) and
    connected to my laptop via an USB2 port. I transferred a 111-MB movie
    file from the card into PC and back, and timed the transfer time with a
    stopwatch. Here are the results:

    Sandisk SD card -- read/write speed = 9.2MBps / 5.3MBps
    Transcend/Agfa SD card -- read/write speed = 8.5MBps / 6.5MBps

    This is strange ! The Transcend card performed up to its specification
    (7.7MBps/6.8MBps). But the Sandisk card perfomed even better on reading
    speed (than Transcend), and only slightly worse on writing speed. It
    should not be happening. The Sandisk technical support claims that the
    Sandisk Standard 256MB card has a read/write speed of up to 2.8 MB/s,
    but in some batches the speed can be as low as 1.5MB/s. I do not know
    what to think of these results. I did the speed measurements again, and
    I got the same results with the accuracy of few percent. I am
    perplexed. And I do not know what card to keep :-(

    Well, Michael, I know, you told me several times already that I should
    stop obsessing over a card, and go and take the pictures. I did take
    some pictures. But on overall scheme of things, I am an asocial nerd,
    and I have nobody to show or email the pictures. Thus no motivation to
    make 'em. The only thing left for me is to obsess over choosing a card,
    trying to maximize the output (speed+quality) while minimizing the
    input (price).

    D.


  15. Re: speed measured (Was: Re: AGFA SD card)

    drocillo wrote:
    > Michael J. Mahon wrote:
    >
    >
    >>This is very unlikely to happen in photographic applications, since
    >>a card is very seldom "recycled" in its entirety more than once a day,
    >>and 10,000 such cycles would correspond to continuous use for over 25
    >>years!

    >
    >
    > I got this information from the primer on MLC/SLC,
    > http://www.memorynet.co.uk/info/faq-...vel-cell.shtml
    > . My understanding is that the cell in the SLC card can assume either
    > of its two states -- either there is a charge in the cell, or there
    > isn't. The MLC card has its cell in either of the 4 states -- the cell
    > can containeither of the four intermediate amounts of electrical charge
    > (the full charge, two thirds of a full charge, one third of a full
    > charge, and no charge). Such an "analogous" arrangement in MLC is less
    > reliable (it is more susceptible to an external electrical field which
    > can easier discharge the cell and switch it in another of the 4
    > states). Over time, the charge in a cell can dissipate either
    > naturally, or helped with external electrical field or when been put
    > through X-Ray machine in airport. The distinction between the 4 charged
    > levels in a MLC card is less than the difference between the
    > charged/not charged state in SLC card. It is easier for a cell in an
    > MLC card to switch sporadically into another state out of the four
    > possible states. So, it may still be beneficial to get an SLC card.
    > Less probability of arbitrary corruption of memory.


    This is theoretically true, but has no bearing on the actual
    reliability of products. Both schemes are quite robust in
    practice, and the MLC chips have lower costs, and therefore are
    driving flash memory prices.

    This is a difference without a distinction, from the point of
    view of the user. Neither card has any reliability problem.

    > I got an external SD card reader (Sandisk's ImageMate 8-in-1) and
    > connected to my laptop via an USB2 port. I transferred a 111-MB movie
    > file from the card into PC and back, and timed the transfer time with a
    > stopwatch. Here are the results:
    >
    > Sandisk SD card -- read/write speed = 9.2MBps / 5.3MBps
    > Transcend/Agfa SD card -- read/write speed = 8.5MBps / 6.5MBps
    >
    > This is strange ! The Transcend card performed up to its specification
    > (7.7MBps/6.8MBps). But the Sandisk card perfomed even better on reading
    > speed (than Transcend), and only slightly worse on writing speed. It
    > should not be happening. The Sandisk technical support claims that the
    > Sandisk Standard 256MB card has a read/write speed of up to 2.8 MB/s,
    > but in some batches the speed can be as low as 1.5MB/s. I do not know
    > what to think of these results. I did the speed measurements again, and
    > I got the same results with the accuracy of few percent. I am
    > perplexed. And I do not know what card to keep :-(


    The algorithms used to write are particularly "interesting", and
    can lead to surprising results. Worse, different devices (like
    cameras) usually use different write schemes.

    > Well, Michael, I know, you told me several times already that I should
    > stop obsessing over a card, and go and take the pictures. I did take
    > some pictures. But on overall scheme of things, I am an asocial nerd,
    > and I have nobody to show or email the pictures. Thus no motivation to
    > make 'em. The only thing left for me is to obsess over choosing a card,
    > trying to maximize the output (speed+quality) while minimizing the
    > input (price).


    Ah! Your more interested in flash memory than in digital
    photography! I'll bet you can find lots of others who share
    your interest on a forum dedicated to flash memory. ;-)

    -michael

    Music synthesis for 8-bit Apple II's!
    Home page: http://members.aol.com/MJMahon/

    "The wastebasket is our most important design
    tool--and it is seriously underused."

  16. Re: speed measured (Was: Re: AGFA SD card)


    Michael J. Mahon wrote:

    > Ah! Your more interested in flash memory than in digital
    > photography! I'll bet you can find lots of others who share
    > your interest on a forum dedicated to flash memory.


    Before posting my question about SD cards on the digital cameras forum
    and crossposting it to the handheld computer forums, I made a search
    for the forums dedicated to flash memory cards only. I did not find
    them. I interpreted this fact by hypothesizing that nobody is
    interested by talking about flash memory per se, but only in a
    particular application. The users of digital cameras and of handheld
    computers could well encounter the same problems which I had, so these
    forums seemed to me to be the appropriate place to post.

    Well, I found also the forums comp.arch.embedded and
    sci.electronics.design which talked about bare flash memory, but this
    was the flash memory used in too remote applications such as
    reprogrammable controllers.

    So far, I have the said thoughts boiling in my head with no opportunity
    to spill it outside into some other enthusiasts' heads.

    D.


  17. Re: speed measured (Was: Re: AGFA SD card)

    drocillo wrote:
    > Michael J. Mahon wrote:
    >
    >
    >>Ah! Your more interested in flash memory than in digital
    >>photography! I'll bet you can find lots of others who share
    >>your interest on a forum dedicated to flash memory.

    >
    >
    > Before posting my question about SD cards on the digital cameras forum
    > and crossposting it to the handheld computer forums, I made a search
    > for the forums dedicated to flash memory cards only. I did not find
    > them. I interpreted this fact by hypothesizing that nobody is
    > interested by talking about flash memory per se, but only in a
    > particular application. The users of digital cameras and of handheld
    > computers could well encounter the same problems which I had, so these
    > forums seemed to me to be the appropriate place to post.
    >
    > Well, I found also the forums comp.arch.embedded and
    > sci.electronics.design which talked about bare flash memory, but this
    > was the flash memory used in too remote applications such as
    > reprogrammable controllers.
    >
    > So far, I have the said thoughts boiling in my head with no opportunity
    > to spill it outside into some other enthusiasts' heads.


    I understand.

    I think the problem is that flash memory is so trouble-free in operation
    that no one has any cause to be concerned with any aspect of it except
    capacity, speed, and price. I've never found any *bad* flash memory,
    and I've never heard from anyone who wore some out!

    -michael

    Home page: http://members.aol.com/MJMahon/

    "The wastebasket is our most important design
    tool--and it is seriously underused."

  18. Re: speed measured (Was: Re: AGFA SD card)


    Michael J. Mahon wrote:

    > I think the problem is that flash memory is so trouble-free in operation...
    > I've never found any *bad* flash memory,
    > and I've never heard from anyone who wore some out!


    Yes ! And the housing boom will last forever ! The prices will never
    fall !


  19. Re: speed measured (Was: Re: AGFA SD card)

    drocillo wrote:
    > Michael J. Mahon wrote:
    >
    >
    >>I think the problem is that flash memory is so trouble-free in operation...
    >>I've never found any *bad* flash memory,
    >>and I've never heard from anyone who wore some out!

    >
    >
    > Yes ! And the housing boom will last forever ! The prices will never
    > fall !


    In this case, more like, "The card will last longer than the camera!"

    -michael

    Music synthesis for 8-bit Apple II's!
    Home page: http://members.aol.com/MJMahon/

    "The wastebasket is our most important design
    tool--and it is seriously underused."

  20. Re: speed measured (Was: Re: AGFA SD card)


    Michael J. Mahon wrote:
    > drocillo wrote:
    > > Michael J. Mahon wrote:
    > >
    > >
    > >>I think the problem is that flash memory is so trouble-free in operation...
    > >>I've never found any *bad* flash memory,
    > >>and I've never heard from anyone who wore some out!

    > >
    > >
    > > Yes ! And the housing boom will last forever ! The prices will never
    > > fall !

    >
    > In this case, more like, "The card will last longer than the camera!"


    No. It is more like: "In the past 5 years, my house grew significantly
    in price. Houses of everyone whom I know grew up in prices. Therefore,
    everyone's house in the US grew up in price. The growth will be
    indefinite".

    "My memory cards never failed. Cards of everyone around me whom I know
    never failed. Therefore, nobody in the world had their memory cards
    failed. In fact, the cards will never fail".


+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast