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Lexar supercharges SD & microSD cards as it adopts the SD Express standard

Lexar develops SD Express memory cards
(Image credit: Lexar)

Lexar has announced that is developing memory cards using the new SD Express standard, that will offer significantly faster data transfer speeds. It is working on both SD format and microSD format cards, which are not only the same shape and size as the current SD and microSD cards, but which will also will be backwards compatible.

The new SD Express standard was officially unveiled by the SD Association just over a year ago in May 2020. SD Express makes use of the PCI Express® (PCIe) 4.0 specification delivering a maximum data transfer rate of nearly four gigabytes per second (GB/s). 

SD Express will be able to transfer data up three times faster than the fastest UHS-II SD card available today,  with a theoretical max read speed of up to 985MB/s. 

Lexar will be producing SD Express cards with a capacities of up to  512GB, and microSD Express with capacity options up to 256GB. According to Lexar's own benchmarking the cards will have a read speed of 824MB/s, and a write speed of up to 410MB/s.

Lexar's own labs claim a maximum read speed of 824MB/s, and a write speed of up to 410MB/s for  SD Express cards (Image credit: Lexar)

“Many of the latest high-end cameras and mobile phones are capable of recording video in 8K and require a fast transfer rate. With the SM2708 controller now supporting the SD 8.0 specification which offers more than triple the throughput, applications such as 8K video capture, RAW photo capture, multi-channel IOT devices, multi-processing automotive storage and other applications requiring ultra-high data speeds are now possible,” says Nelson Duann, Silicon Motion’s Senior Vice President of Marketing and R&D.

The cards are expected to actually launched in 2022.

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Chris George

Chris George has worked on Digital Camera World since its launch in 2017. He has been writing about photography, mobile phones, video making and technology for over 30 years – and has edited numerous magazines including PhotoPlus, N-Photo, Digital Camera, Video Camera, and Professional Photography. 


His first serious camera was the iconic Olympus OM10, with which he won the title of Young Photographer of the Year - long before the advent of autofocus and memory cards. Today he uses a Nikon D800, a Fujifilm X-T1, a Sony A7, and his iPhone 11 Pro.