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Thread: M9 - Memory Card Performance

  1. #1
    Member zoomstop's Avatar
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    Sep 2009
    Washington DC
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    M9 - Memory Card Performance

    Hello Everyone,

    I just took delivery of my M9 Gray. It was ordered on 9/9 and delivered on 12/1. Anyway I wanted to purchase new memory cards 8GB or 16GB to accommodate the larger file size of each photo compared to the M8.2.

    I was all set to purchase the fastest Memory card from Sandisk (Extreme Series) until I ran into official Leica PDF (Link Below) explaining the expected performance rating of the various tested cards.

    Can someone explain to me why a SanDisk Ultra 2 would perform better then a Extreme on a M9? The Ultra has a 16mbs speed and the extreme has a 30mb/s speed. Logic would say that the extreme would be better but not according to our good friends at Leica.

    | Leica M9 | 35mm Summilux ASPH | 50mm Summilux ASPH | 50mm Noctilux ASPH | 75mm Summicron ASPH |
    | Leica S2-P | Grip | 35mm Summarit ASPH | 70mm Summarit ASPH | 120mm Summarit ASPH|

  2. #2
    Senior Subscriber Member Mike Hatam's Avatar
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    Oct 2007
    Los Gatos, CA
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    Re: M9 - Memory Card Performance

    Leica has not optimized their M9 firmware yet in the area of SD card performance. There are currently many issues with SD card compatibility (some cards simply don't work, or give eratic behavior), and card performance (very slow formatting, etc).

    I suspect that we'll soon have a firmware upgrade that addresses these issues. Once the firmware is optimized, then I think we'll see the faster cards (i.e. Extreme III) preform better in the M9 than the slower cards.

    In the meantime, you may want to get an 8GB Ultra II to hold you over.
    Mike Hatam
    Sony A99, RX1, RX100

  3. #3

    Re: M9 - Memory Card Performance

    I think that the consensus on the L-C forum is that the safest choice, until the firmware is upgraded, is Sandisk Ultra II's. For some strange reason in the M9, they are faster than the theoretically faster Extreme III, which Leica acknowledges. Many of the other makes of cards have given problems. You should do a full wipe/low level format the first time use of a card, with a fully and newly charged battery, as for a 16GB card, this takes about 30 minutes. After this you can do a normal FAT level format. It is best to use new cards in the M9, as it can fail to format a card used previously in other cameras, especially if there is data on it.

    Last edited by wilsonlaidlaw; 5th December 2009 at 10:02.

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