Which SD cards are working flawlessly and long-term for you?

I’ve had varied issues using SD cards as storage extension for my FP2. The system is usually updated as soon as updates become available, write-load is low and so far, I’ve chosen cards quite large in size to avoid deleting data and overwriting the empty space.

First, I was dumb enough to format an SD as “internal” and then put another SD card in for a few minutes - data lost, lesson learned. External only hence.

Then, when I updated to Android 6, I lost the ability to write on my SD. It continued operating read-only for a short while until it became non-readable, this time even to my PC (linux dmesg/fdisk don’t detect it any more). At the time, it was not even 5 months in use and had about 80GB of data on it; It was removed from the phone only twice during its short lifetime. Data lost, again.

This was the SD in question: SanDisk Ultra 200GB microSDXC up to 90 MB/Sec, Class 10. So no more SanDisk for me.

It might be the manufacturers fault. It might also be the firmware not being optimized for use with this USH speed class. Or something else. All I know: I don’t want to loose data on this Phone yet again. Please don’t get me started on backups. I’d like a reliable SD card, price is no criterion.

So, I’m asking you: Which SD card have you been using in your Fairphone for over a year without issues? Thanks for suggestions!

Stats so far…

SDXC Class 10, UHS I:

  • SanDisk Ultra 64GB 80/?mbs… satisfied 1 > 2 years, 1 < 1 year
  • SanDisk Ultra 200GB 90/~15mbs… datagrave 1 < 6 months

Accusing the card is only fair if…

  • no rough handling (physical, sun, moist, static)
  • no janking out while mounted (SDXC) or writing (all SD)
  • reasonable number of write cycles (amount of data written)
  • death occured within few weeks to less than 24 months of FP2 use

Here you go:

Yes, I saw the topic - the SD card that wasn’t writable and finally broke after 5 months is listed there as fully functional. Hence, not a shopping list I’d like to use for reliability.

Thanks though!

I (with a FP2) and my parents (with another smartphones) have no problems with our three 64 GB SanDisk Ultra microSD cards. But we didn’t remove the SD cards from the phone after installation. I use the card since I got the FP2 (which was on 8 January 2016).

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Hi tofra,

You’ve been using the card for two years, is the same true for your parents?

Thanks for your reply and for sharing!

To the interested general public – :wink:

I’m confident removing a card twice doesn’t impact its lifespan given it’s handled with care. (I’ve also used ample non-microSDs in devices like PCs and laptops, car and cameras, requiring frequent removal; without any of those cards dying on me; ever.) However, to my understanding, the storage capacity is quite a sensitive issue.

Amazon reviews to your link sport a whopping 19% of people very unsatisfied, mostly experiencing total data loss in 0-24 months, and only 2/3 of reviews are positive - exceedingly bad numbers given many good reviews are likely written few days after purchase.

This review picture is no different for any other major company, including more expensive ones. I checked Intenso, Kingston, Lexar, SanDisk, Samsung, Toshiba, Transcend at the most legit-looking amazon seller with >300 reviews, they have around 10% death rate across all models.

However, the a. reviews don’t distinguish the particular model of the card in question - so it might just be that microSD technology is well under control for 64GB and it’s the 128-and-above cards skewing statistics with 25-50% death rates due to manufacturing defects. It might also be all cards are about equally bad in certain applications. This is what I assume until proven otherwise.

It might be that Fairphone really doesn’t handle large capacity cards well, or fast ones, or cards not using a certain USH standard, or just any SD because the problem might be related to insufficient shielding. To clarify: There are other phones having these problems, too. It’s a tricky business, apparently, SD standards being all over the place.

To create some statistics for our phone, to prevent me (and others) loosing data on this again, I’d love some more input. :slight_smile: Maybe this isn’t the correct form to answer a question like this? Feel free to correct me, I’m no forums person.

Cheers, and thanks again, tofra!

I had that as well for almost a year now, never a problem formatted as external storage.
Will now replace it with the SanDisk Extreme 128 GB microSDXC Class 10, U3, V30, A1. We’ll see …

Hey A.Elk, thanks for your input! Hint: Backup, backup… :wink:

To me, yearly replacing is ok if prices are low as they are as for non-brand cards. Data loss due to card issues before end of assumed lifecycle (I assume two years) is an absolute no-go to me, hence I used brand cards. Now I learn that doesn’t mean all too much.

I would have used it longer, but I ran out of space … I will now try to use it in my trusty and anachronistically old MP3 player to replace the 32GB card there :wink: .
I have a few defunct flash memory devices (USB sticks, memory cards) lying around already, most of them still hold the data, but can’t be written to any longer.

I just accept it as a general flaw in the technology (such as conventional harddisks don’t like to be rattled too much) … at times, the controller just shuts down the device, or the flash memory goes corrupt, or the former happens because of the latter. Whatever. You just have to be aware of the possibility this might happen and try to be not too dependent.

Amen :+1: .

Some phones do not provide SD slots at all. For this very reason, it seems… out of space… new phone.

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Mother’s card (as well as mine) was purchased in December 2015, father’s card was purchased in October 2017. Both were installed shortly after delivery.

I’m very happy with the Toshiba Exceria line. I’ve been running a 64GB version for the first year, then switched for a 128GB version when it became more affordable :money_with_wings:

No problems of any kind as for now * knock on wood *. I’m running my SD card as encrypted extension of my internal memory.

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I am using a Samsung EVO+ UHS-1 Grade 1 Class 10 128GB since over a year without any troubles.
By now I have filled up 60GB and there never have been any errors.


Reported having troubles with the 64GB of the same type though.

I initially started in 2016 with the 128GB Pro+ of the same manufacturer but it did not initialize properly at reboot.

Samsung states their cards would be waterproof (also to salt water), shielded against radiation (maybe only for luggage control purpose), shock-proof against
several g´s and mechanical force.
Every now and then I do remove it and use it with my card reader on my pc. This never caused any problems.
Actually I am still running Lollipop though.

BTW I seem to have a lucky hand on sd cards as I up to now never experienced one of them dying. My first sd card with 1GB from AData is still fully working after 10 years
and countless operations used as a portable app storage for emailing and more.
The only fixed size usb stick I have lost up to now was due to an esd shock after dropping. It was a freebie anyway and all data could be recovered from elsewere.
Hence I rather prefer sd card readers which usually die first instead of the card itself. Therefrom I have a few broken laying around already.

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I got another uncomfortable fact to know on sd cards and different other storage types.

Available at our national TV station via stream. A regular broadcast called “Marktcheck” from Tue, 10.4. | 20.15 o’clock

Starting at minute 17.

They found out that 7/10 sd cards (other semi-conductor based storage types may as well) actually does not have the declared capacity but only 50% or even less. One of them only had 100MB but was declared having GB, “100MB” - ridiculus, where could anyone find one of such tiny capacity these days.
It affects well known manufacturers and no-name types of any kind, Samsung as well as SanDisk etc. Also no matter where they were ordered. But, the better the proposal, the higher the risk of being duped. Even the packaging looks 100% original and all were originaly sealed. Even experts could not distinguish.

It seems that storage which does not pass the final production test is being gathered and sold by scammers.

For testing the tool [H2testw] (https://h2testw.de.softonic.com/)
was used which could be used generally for any type of storage device, semiconductor based (ssd) or classic magnetical HDs.
In general it fills your storage with several 1GB files with a specific data pattern and reading/comparing them at reaching full storage afterwards for changes.

Doing this manually using another checksum algorithm should do as well, like MD5, sha…

Such test should always be done prior to use the storage for whatever purpose to prevent being scammend or not to stumble over any surprise much later after having serious data troubles or data loss.

I have tested all of mine with positive results.
They were spread from 1GB up to 128GB.
Test duration can widely vary depending on different factors such as system/OS type, speed class, connection type (USB1.1/2/3.0; respectively POI/pATA/sATA), reader type or converter type. Also I believe there is a speed limit due to the tools file operation as I always was far off from my usual transfer rates.

I can provide my time estimations for my tested cards.

Using a Delock USB3.0 single-slot sd card reader on USB 2 port :frowning:
2GHz Dual core AMD; M$-XP

AData 1GB (80x) ~ 20mins.
AData 8GB class 6 ~ 40mins.
Samsung 32GB class 10 ~ 90mins.
Samsung 128GB Evo+ U1 ~ 200mins.

Intel Core2Duo 2,5GHz Vista64
Delock USB3.0 single-slot sd card reader on USB 3 port

Samsung 128GB Pro+ U1 ~ 200mins.

It looks like I have been lucky up to now with all my storage purchases.


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