Image Storage Printing Knowledge
Image Storage

Image storage for a digital camera can be provided several different ways:

  1. as onboard storage (internally within the camera) with a memory chip which holds the images
  2. as removable storage consisting of some type of reusable media (memory card or floppy disk) that is inserted or removed as needed from the camera body
  3. as a wired or wireless link which sends the images directly to a computer hard drive, ZIP disk, or similar storage device.

 
Internal or Onboard Storage

Onboard storage is usually flash memory with built-in RAM ranging from 2 to 8 MB. The onboard storage allows the camera to hold from 10 images to over 100, depending on the resolution and the compression setting selected for each image.
 

Removable File Storage

Removable media can hold a wider range of MB's (4 MB, 32 MB, 64 MB, 192 MB, 320 MB, 448 MB, etc.) for increased storage options. It may be best to purchase at least two storage cards so work can continue as one card becomes fully loaded and is in use as the images are downloaded to another storage device or a computer. Generally, the camera will have one type of storage media use for the image files however, some cameras can use multiple types of storage devices. The most common are flash memory or magnetic media. Flash memory stores data or images on semiconductor chips. Magnetic media uses tapes or disks as a means of storing the recorded data or images. When considering the type of storage desired, the most important factors will be capacity, speed, and durability. Removable storage options include the following:

  • PC Cards:  A PC card is about the size of a credit card and can hold 5 MB to 1 GB. Different formats and thicknesses are available as Type I, Type II, and Type III versions. To read the stored files, a PC card reader will be needed. The cards are hot swappable, so one card can be pulled out and another plugged in without restarting.
  • CompactFlash™(CF):  A storage device that is available in type I and type II sizes. The type II CompactFlash is larger than the type I. The storage capacity of CF cards ranges from 16MB to 1GB.
  • SmartMedia™:  A flash memory-based card designed specifically for digital cameras. The cards are about the thickness of a credit card, but are a much smaller size. Capacity ranges from 16MB to 128MB.
  • Iomega Click!™:  Iomega Click!™ is a low-cost alternative to CompactFlash™ and SmartMedia™, and provides 40 MB of memory and is about the size of a 35mm slide.
  • IBM Microdrive:  The IBM Microdrive is a mini hard disk drive and is available in 340MB and 1GB capacities. They are made to fit into a CompactFlash™ type II slot.
  • Memory Stick:  Slightly smaller than a stick of gum and compatible only with Sony products, this storage device is available from 4 MB to 128 MB capacities. It contains a locking device to keep images from being erased.
  • Secure Digital Card: About the size of a postage stamp, the SD card is available in capacities ranging from 8MB to 512MB. SD cards were designed specifically to protect the flow of copyright data through the use of the cryptographic technology built into the card.
  • xD Picture Card: Smaller than a postage stamp, the xD picture card (Extreme Digital) is one of the most compact removable storage devices available. It comes in capacities ranging from 64MB to 512MB.
  • 3.5" Floppy Disk:  3.5" Floppy Disks are inexpensive, easy to use, and compatible with almost every computer system, however the capacity is limited to 1.44 MB.

 


 

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