Compact Flash Cards were introduced to the market in 1994 by Sandisk. Since then they have developed into a highly popular medium for storing large amounts of data into a small space. Compact Flash cards have proved useful in Nikon Digital SLR cameras. Most CF cards are compatible with Nikon cameras, but card size and speed are important aspects to take into account when optimising Nikon camera equipment. Nikon recommends using CF cards from Sandisk, Lexar and Microdrive and advises not using cards with storage capacities greater than 8 gigabytes.
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Sandisk makes a large collection of CF cards that are compatible with Nikon Cameras. The Nikon D300, the top-of-the-line SLR, will work optimally with the Sandisk Extreme IV, Extreme III, Ultra II and Standard. All four trims come with 2, 4 and 8 gigabyte capacities with exception of the Sandisk Standard, which reaches 4 gigabytes. Lower-grade Nikon SLRs such as the D70 and D200, will take the Ultra II and Extreme III trims but also lower capacity Sandisk, cards such as the 300 megabyte Type II trim. Nikon point-and-shoot cameras that use CF cards such as the Coolpix 885, the Coolpix 775 and the Coolpix 5000 will take cards from the Sandisk SDCFB series. Compatible card capacities of the trim include 16, 32, 48, 64, 96 and 128 megabytes.
Lexar CF cards compatible with top Nikon SLRs like the D300 include the Professional UDMA, Platinum II and Professional trims. The Professional UDMA and Professional are available with 2, 4 and 8 gigabyte capacities. The Platinum II trim is available with capacities of 512 megabytes and 1 or 2 gigabytes. Mid-grade Nikon SLRs like the D70 will take the Lexar Platinum trim but not the Professional trims. Coolpix Cameras will take CF cards from the Lexar USB Series. Compatible sizes include 8, 16, 32, 48, 64, 80, 128 and 160 megabytes.
Microdrive CF cards compatible with the Nikon D-SLRs include the DSCM-11000, the 2 gigabyte 3K4-2, the 4 gigabyte 3K4-4 and the 6 gigabyte 3K6. Coolpix Cameras will take the DSCM trim card with 1 gigabyte and 512 megabyte storage capacities.
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