CFA Reveals New XQD Compact Flash Format

By Greg Tarr On Dec 19 2011 - 6:01am

CUPERTINO, CALIF. – The Compact- Flash Association (CFA) introduced this month a new XQD standard for CF cards that should enable data transfer speeds out of the gate of 125MB/s/.

Based on the PCIe standard, XQD CF cards promise even greater speeds down the road, the association said.

The new cards, which will be both smaller and faster than the current CF format cards, offer a different physical format, and, therefore, are not expected to be compatible with current CF-based cameras.

Licensing for CFA members will start in early 2012, and no camera makers have announced plans to use the format yet.

The faster data rates are expected to help CF cards stay a step ahead of SD cards, which have gained considerable momentum in adoption by camera manufacturers in recent years. The SD card format also continues to improve both storage capacities and speed, furthering its adoption into non-camera categories as well.

Key features of the XQD format include: a 38.5mm by 29.9mm by 3.8mm optimized size format, greater durability, scalable high performance interface, based on PCI Express 2.5Gbps today and 5Gbps in the future (instead of PCMCIA used by SD cards), and actual write speed targets of 125MB/sec and higher.

The association has also created a new XQD logo to help identify cards based on the new format.

“The XQD format will enable further evolution of hardware and imaging applications, and widen the memory card options available to CompactFlash users such as professional photographers,” said Shigeto Kanda CFA chairman and Canon executive.

The CFA said it plans to show XQD cards at its booth at CP+ 2012, February 9-12 in Yokohama, Japan.

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