Reviews |Lexar Professional 1800x SDXC UHS-II Card GOLD Series

Lexar Professional 1800x SDXC UHS-II Card GOLD Series Review

The SD card choice for professional users

Review

Price when reviewed

£55

$45
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Our Verdict

I’ve looked at the Lexar Professional 1800x SDXC™ UHS-II Card GOLD Series 128GB card in this test. The capacity is more than sufficient for most photoshoots when shooting RAW with the Sony A7 III or even the higher resolution A7R II.

When it comes to shooting video, the card had no problems keeping up with the Sony A7 III as I shot 4K Log3 footage. In the real world test, it was the camera that would force a halt in proceedings, due to the usual A7III overheating issues rather than any issue with the card.

As ever the card build quality is excellent and checking the card over, it has a good quality feel, I feel confident that this will last several years. Used as my main form of storage over the month, it worked without a glitch and is still performing solidly with little to no signs of wear.

The software testing and the card showed decent real-world performance with excellent transfer speeds. These speeds might not have been as fast as those quoted by Lexar, but they weren’t far behind and are still some of the fastest I’ve seen.

The price is the only sticking point at a touch above the price you would expect to pay for some other brands. However, the quality is good, and Lexar is a name you can trust, so it is a solid investment.

For

  • Fast UHS-II interface
  • Large capacity options
  • Solid performance

Against

  • More expensive than some other options

What is the Lexar Professional 1800x SDXC UHS-II Card GOLD Series?

Lexar is one of the leading names in flash memory and has been favoured by professionals for years due to the manufacturer’s reputation in providing high performance and reliability.

The new Gold series aims to set the Gold standard for flash memory with a range of SDHC/SDXC UHS-II cards that offer industry-leading speeds and capacity. This card is in the 1800x range with the next-step-up being the 2000x.

The new 1800x card offers fast transfer speeds; quoted by Lexar as a maximum write speed of 180MB/s and read speeds of 270MB/s. That might not quite be up to the speeds of CFExpress, but for most of the cameras around at the moment, those speeds are more than enough.

Showing the V60 class icon, this card has been developed for use by those image creators pushing the boundaries of today’s cameras’ latest quality and resolution settings, including RAW and 4K video.

However, with the speeds and demands placed on the ultra-thin and compact UHS-II card, will the Lexar Professional 2000x SDHC™/SDXC™ UHS-II Card GOLD Series be able to keep up with the pace, or will it become throttled through overheating?

Specification

  • Capacity: 64, 128, 256GB
  • Format: SDHC/SDXC
  • Interface : UHS-II
  • Max Read Speed : 270MB/s
  • Max Write Speed : 180MB/s

Performance

The card was used within a Sony A7III to shoot video and stills through this test with a brief stint in the Canon EOS R. Throughout the test, the card performed without issue and within the A7 III’s limitations, which has a habit of overheating if left recording for too long.

I started by using the card as the main storage media while shooting a few review videos. The card performed without issue as I captured footage using the PP8 colour profile, S-Log 3 with the S-Gamut3.Cine.

The card’s write speed held up to the constant use and, once full, was emptied and reinserted into the camera – copying the contents across to an Intel NUC 9 took around 12-14 minutes depending on file type and clip size. The card was under load for four hours, give or take time between setting-up shots.

The read speeds proved particularly impressive, with the files transferring to the external hard drive incredibly quickly, around 14 minutes. This may sound quite a long time, but work that out and it’s almost hitting the card’s maximum read speed for the full duration of the transfer.

Used for shooting stills in a Canon EOS R, the card kept up with the camera’s pace well. The R’s speed is impressive, considering it’s a few years old now.

There was nothing to fault the performance; this is a card that provides exactly the performance you need to shoot both high-resolution video and stills.

After the real-world test, I ran the card through AJA on an Intel NUC 9 with the following results.

Write: 180MB/s
Read: 232MB/s

The write speed was bang on, the same as Lexar’s. As write speed is the statistic we’re really interested in as image creators, that’s an excellent result.

Read speeds are slightly behind those reported by Lexar, but not by far.

There’s no doubting that these results are good and more than fast enough to keep up with all mirrorless and DSLR cameras you could wish to partner the card with.

Final Thoughts

Lexar is a name you can trust for safe and secure storage media. For that reliability and the name, you do pay a brand premium, but even then, the price difference isn’t too great.

With the Lexar Professional 1800x SDXC™ UHS-II Card GOLD Series 128GB you get a card that you can rely on; it’s made well and has proven to provide solid performance.

Capacity 64, 128, 256GB

For the majority of photographers who need a high-performance card then the Lexar Professional 1800x SDXC™ UHS-II Card GOLD Series 128GB is an ideal choice. The card balances price, capacity and performance.

The only reason you would need to rethink and opt for the higher performance 2000x version of the GOLD series is if you’re shooting 8K and of course, have a little more ready cash.

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