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Thread: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

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    Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    Hello All,
    I will be leaving soon for 10 days in Iceland on a photo tour. I have the Sony A7r that I have just started using and love it but I don't have a feel for how fast it eats up memory cards. I know it is totally dependent on the size of the card but I am trying to gauge how many I might need for 10 days of shooting. I have a couple of 32 Sandisk now but need to load up. Any suggestions as to size of card and a how many I might need for such a trip. I certainly don't want to run out of cards but don't want to be crazy about it.
    Many Thanks!
    J. Paul

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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    How much storage you need depends upon how you shoot.

    For me, I find that a three week trip with a photography focus usually nets about 2000 exposures, so I carry enough cards to capture double that. That's about 4 32G cards with my E-M1 at 1000 exposures per card. At least that's the ballpark.

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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    For all day shooting with a Pentax 645D (40MP), I could fill two 16GB cards (600 shots). And I am really shooting all day. I would say 10 32GB cards would work. But how many images can you shoot in a day? Your file manager in your OS will tell you the size of your a7r files and you can calculate from there.

    Watch your shooting. I am sure Iceland has SD cards. If you think you might call it close, see if you can find a place to buy more.

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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    Doing workshops I like to have about 1 per day and about 16gb each. Here is why if you switch out cards and put them away after a day or 2 shooting it serves as a extra backup even if you back up to a laptop you still have the raw data if something weird happens. If I was doing this trip I would probably have 6 32 gb in hand myself. I also in the card case always when done shooting a card turn it over to the non printed side. It tells me immediately it's a shot card. I never format a card till after it's backed up three times at home than just before my next shoot do I reformat. I keep data on as long as possible. Huge tip get into a process of how you deal with your data and NEVER do anything different ever. It's the single most important tool you have don't buy cheap stuff and try to save money here. This is the worst area to try and save a buck. I am amazed how folks spend 50k and buy the cheapest cards on the market. Oh and don't buy any of these off eBay or not a well known retailer and buy the real packaging as well. It's a loaded counterfeit business buy from B&H or someplace like it like Samys and such.
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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    jp, point one is how do you anticipate shooting, as in: do you frequently bracket, or look for many compositions in one small location? Are you naturally inclined to 'shoot a lot' at short notice, machine gun style, or are you more 'medium format' in your approach? Shoot RAW? Or RAW + jpeg?

    I use 32Gb cards for the a7r, shoot RAW only, not many brackets (now the focus aids, histo and DR are so good) and expect to come back with maybe 1500-2000 images from 2-3 weeks, aiming for a keeper rate of 30%. Sony offer compressed file sizes - RAW is 36Mp so you get around 850 or thereabouts in each 32Gb card (32,000Mb / 36mb = 889). I find it hard to shoot *meaningful* images more than around 200-250 each day, often much less...if you have to travel/eat/drink/toilet breaks/change lenses-cameras-filters/walk the site, and get to shoot for say, five hours, that is 300 minutes, so 300/200 gives me just 90 seconds to find, compose, setup and shoot. See how it works?

    I take 4 x 32Gb cards and a couple older 16Gb, just in case I hit a 'rich vein' - and no photo shops in West Tibet or Ladakh, maybe 1-2 in Lhasa. I never format cards while travelling, they are my source, so I back them up onto a Nexto hard drive (230 grams) when the card is full - SD cards these days are very reliable) :

    NEXTO DI ND2730G Nexto Photo Storage Portable NESE-ND2730500G

    Now all bets are off with a tripod! What a time killer, I really need to know I have a great shot to even consider one, as you can add min 3-4 minutes even if the 'pod is open and extended due to cable release, setting up, composing, bending over...an hour goes by very fast, doing this.

    I did the tests before last trip, and concluded I can hold the a7r plus even a 100mm lens very still at 1/320s or more, such that the extra very marginal 'quality' from each 'pod shot was well outweighed by the extra # shots handheld in a limited timeframe. Believe me, travel 'shooting time' is very limited for the most part. For the first time ever, the Gitzo stayed home - free at last!

    I guard my cards and the wallet I use for them very carefully, always use Sandisk genuine cards, and mark used cards with a sticky label. You need discipline and it pays off.

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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    All of them!

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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    Make sure you have at least 4 batteries.
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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    Thanks to all for your very helpful and insightful thoughts and experiences! This is just eh best photo forum around!
    J. Paul

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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    Quote Originally Posted by ken_vs_ryu View Post
    Make sure you have at least 4 batteries.
    Yes, and two chargers. Pretty cheap from Wasabi ... two batts and a charger runs about $30.

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    Godfrey - GDGPhoto Flickr Stream
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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    This time of year in Iceland you will have many hours of shooting time. Be prepared to radically alter you sleep/wake times.

    Since it is mostly landscape and not wildlife you won't blast off as many shots as something like a safari but if you do spend time with the puffins that will be a heavy card usage day. I had a few thousand exposures over a 10 day period in Iceland.

    Don't forget ND filters! Lots of waterfalls you are going to want them for.

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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    Wow, this is so helpful! Any brand recommendations for ND Filters?

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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    I don't know what size you need but I switched over to these because on longer exposures you don't have issues with IR contamination. I like the 1.8 (6 stops) for various situations.

    irnd filter | B&H Photo Video

    The other thing you may want is 3 stop soft grad ND (I use a rectangular one and hold it in place.....or get ready to use bracketing for a number of shots.
    Last edited by Terry; 27th May 2014 at 11:14.

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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    I use the same as Terry pointed out. I have both a 82 and 77. If you need a 82 let me know I may sell mine.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    This time of year in Iceland you will have many hours of shooting time. Be prepared to radically alter you sleep/wake times.

    Since it is mostly landscape and not wildlife you won't blast off as many shots as something like a safari but if you do spend time with the puffins that will be a heavy card usage day. I had a few thousand exposures over a 10 day period in Iceland.

    Don't forget ND filters! Lots of waterfalls you are going to want them for.
    From what I remember you did score some nice puffin shots.
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

    www.guymancusophotography.com

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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    Why don't you buy a couple of portable 1TB external disks? Plenty of storage, a backup copy and will cost you a hundred bucks
    http://www.amazon.com/Passport-Ultra...words=Passport

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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    Quote Originally Posted by f64 View Post
    Why don't you buy a couple of portable 1TB external disks? Plenty of storage, a backup copy and will cost you a hundred bucks
    Amazon.com: WD My Passport Ultra 1TB Portable External USB 3.0 Hard Drive with Auto Backup - Black: Computers & Accessories
    Actually, I'd buy two of those, so I'd still have redundant copies of the files until I got back to home base.
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    Re: Sony A7r & Iceland Trip - How many SD Cards?

    Quote Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
    Yes, and two chargers. Pretty cheap from Wasabi ... two batts and a charger runs about $30.

    G
    /\ This.

    However in the case of Olympus, the OEM and Wasabi chargers and their respective batteries are not interchangeable - might be different with Sony?

    On my last big trip I took 3 OEM batteries and the OEM charger, and as backup backup, 2 Wasabi batteries and their charger.
    Having 2 chargers (used in parallel) was actually very useful, as where we were did not always have electrical power for long enough periods of time to charge more than one battery.
    Ian.

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