As part of my microSD craziness, we’ll be looking at a Sony branded 32Gb UHS-I MicroSDHC card, model SR-32UYA. The cost was about AU$36, and it includes the memory card (Made in Taiwan) and an adapter (Made in China).
I suppose it’s a little disappointing to not see it made elsewhere – it might just be an A-Data, PQi, SuperTalent, Team Group or other OEM card.
Targeting Android devices, this one claims a read speed up to 40Mb/s and is ideal for HD photo or video. There are many asterisk conditions on this one. Already, we know that it’s not going to be the fastest card, and already judging from the price, it’s not one of the cheapest either – so will it have any other redeeming virtues?
For one, it claims the availability of file recovery software from http://www.sony.net/memorycard, which while not really interesting or useful for myself, can be quite nifty for others. There is also other software available, as “purchaser benefits” but I suppose you could use the software with any other card …
Anyway, the rear part has a lot of qualifying conditions – I do like the clear statement that there are approximately 30,923,764,224 bytes (28.8Gb) available (technically, the device size is a little larger than that, but it seems to account for the factory formatting).
Inside, Sony has definitely overdone it (as usual), with a multilingual fold-out user guide (for a microSD card and adapter, seriously?) that’s much bigger than my table. Of course, the card and the adapter are included too.
The card itself, close-up:
Unlike some of the newer and more modern cards, the “trace pattern” is visible on the rear side.
The card data is as follows:
Size: 31,674,335,232 bytes CID: 824a544e4361726402414066fb00d833 CSD: 400e00325b590000ebfd7f800a40002f
As it turns out, the storage of this card is 223MiB more than the Samsung Plus, but 400MiB less than the Samsung Pro.
The card was tested with the full-random-fill and three pass verify and passed without problems with the Transcend RDF8.
HDTune with Transcend RDF8
There was no problems with the card in the Transcend RDF8 – the card averaged 42Mb/s read, which is above the 40Mb/s claimed on the packet.
HDTune with Kogan RTS5301
Interestingly, inserting this card into the microSD card slot on the reader exhibited the same compatibility issues as the Samsung Pro. By accident, I slipped the card into the adapter and plugged it into the regular SD slot and found …
.. it functions normally when in the adapter. The read rate averages 43.6Mb/s, also above the claimed 40Mb/s. Strangely, when I place it back into the microSD slot now …
… it works in UHS-I mode too! This is what led me to revise the Samsung Pro review, although I couldn’t get the Samsung Pro working in UHS-I in the microSD slot at all. The Sony works “inconsistently” in the microSD slot, but both this and the Samsung Pro work consistently with the RTS5301 in an adapter. Good to know if you use the RTS5301 as your primary reader.
CrystalDiskMark with Transcend RDF8
From this result, we can see that the card is pretty much as expected – while the read speed exceeds expectations, the write speed of 21.48Mb/s is fair, similar to the Samsung Pro, but behind that of the Samsung Plus. It really doesn’t have anything too special in small block performance either. In many ways, except capacity, this card is beaten by the Samsung Plus in performance, which is also cheaper. I will publish an updated shootout table once all my expected cards have been tested!
CrystalDiskMark with Kogan RTS5301
The readings from the RTS5301 are pretty consistent with the RDF8, which really doesn’t seem to mean anything special.
H2testw with Transcend RDF8
I wasn’t aware of H2testw until just recently – it is a program that fills your card with specially formatted data to check that it does hold the data correctly and verify its capacity. As expected, there was no errors, although the speed was slightly lower (as expected as it is a more involved, sustained test).
The Sony card is nicely packaged and is complete with an adapter and a (thick, but useless) manual. The card lives up to its only stated specification speed-wise, and provides a storage capacity in-between the Samsung Plus and Samsung Pro. Unfortunately, its price of AU$36 puts it pretty close to the Samsung Pro which performs better in read and is otherwise similar, but the much cheaper Samsung Plus is able to beat it in all metrics except storage capacity.
In other words, it’s fairly average and ordinary UHS-I class card. It’d still beat the pants off the older “Class 10” only cards, or anything at a lower class rating, but it’s unlikely to hold up against a Sandisk Ultra which is generally cheaper and is a known reliable yard-stick (this to be seen – it’ll be tested soon once it arrives). I’d have to say that this card isn’t the best value – and as it is Made in Taiwan, it’s not likely to be anything too special.