Basic tips for better usage of memory cards

What does a basic camera bag contain? A camera body, various lenses, charger and a bunch of memory Cards. Memory card is essential to save your pictures and without it, a camera is useless. Read on to learn how to care for your memory cards and get the best out of them.
Format before usage
Do not use single memory card in more than one camera. If you have to do so, make sure that you have completely transferred images from memory card in to a backup storage. Before inserting memory card in any other camera, format it completely. It avoids issues like data corruption and unreadable cards.

Protect from elements
Always keep your memory cards in a card wallet in a well organized manner and clean. Avoid carrying unnecessary memory cards everywhere. Protect them from heat, dirt and moisture by using card wallet on assignment. Keep a file with contact information in the cards in case they get lost, any person who may find them contact you.
Backups are more important than you think
Saving photographs in computer or laptop is not enough. Don’t delete photographs until you save them in cloud storage or online means of storage. There are numerous free and paid ones offered by different companies. Make use of them.

Card capacity
There is no need to count each and every photograph you are taking time to time because in all modern cameras, the screen displays the number of images taken and remaining space. Do not try to shoot anymore pictures once the memory limit is reached otherwise you run the risk of corrupting card or overwriting pictures already on card.

Carry more than one memory card and rotate them
When a photographer is carrying more than one memory card, it is difficult to remember where the card is kept and which are loaded and which are empty. Always keep your cards in a card wallet to protect it from elements. Decide a place for loaded cards, empty cards and bad cards too. Use all pockets of wallet and remember place for them. You can also stick an easily removable label at backside of the memory card and mark the events, dates or status. Also keep on rotating them regularly so that you can know which are properly working and which is not. It also makes sure that your cards don’t get over or under utlilised.

Stop at red light
Sometimes while taking pictures, you will find a blinking red light indicating that camera can not take any more images. What actually happens is, while shooting on burst mode, the buffer may get full till all the data is written on to the card. Don’t panic and stop taking anymore pictures for a while. Wait until the red right stops and it is recommend to wait few more seconds after light goes off. Don’t remove the card.

What to do if memory card gets wet ?
What if a memory card gets wet ? Take a breath, let it dry for one day or more and instead of directly using it with camera, put it into card reader and check for any errors. If you feel that it works properly only then insert in your camera.

Use of Card Reader
A lot of camera owners transfer photographs by direct connecting camera to the computer or laptop. Although it works well in most cases, it may cause issues like unnecessary battery use and is generally not very fast. Recommended way is to use a card reader. Always get a good quality card reader for safety of your memory card and data. This is not too expensive, doesn’t need require charging and is easy to carry. You can also use multiple card types.

Update Firmware Regularly
Most people don’t know it, but updating cameras to new firmware released by manufacturer helps a lot. Firmware updates may improve some features and sometimes fix bugs too, if present. You may notice improvements like faster buffer speed and some extra ones like better UI, peripheral support and so on.

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