When XQD memory cards were announced in December 2011, the CompactFlash Association touted the format as the successor to CompactFlash cards. We definitely seemed to be moving in that direction at first: one month after the unveiling, Nikon’s flagship D4 DSLR was announced with XQD card support. The day after that, Sony became the first major memory card maker to announce a line of XQD cards. Six months later, Lexar also announced its intentions to join the party.
Since then, things have died down to the point where you can hear grasshoppers chirping. Not a single XQD-capable camera was announced at Photokina 2012 this past week. Despite being the first to make them, Sony strangely decided to leave the cards out of its top-of-the-line cameras as well.
Sadly the gravy train has left the station, at least where the Nikon D4 is concerned. In the past, D4 owners were pleasantly surprised when they opened up their treasured new possession to find that Nikon had thrown in a complimentary 16GB XQD card and reader, but no more.
Henceforth, shipments of the Nikon D4 will no longer be going out with these un-requested gifts. Considering how much the D4 costs, it may not seem like much, but approximately $200 dollars worth of free hardware is nothing to scoff at. And although Nikon has said nothing regarding the decision to stop including the card and reader in the box, it doesn’t look like XQD cards, which were once touted as possible “CF replacements,” are doing too hot on the market.
(via Nikon Rumors)
Perhaps in response to the growing capacities and falling prices of SD cards, the CompactFlash Association has announced a new format to replace CF cards for professional photographers. It’s called XQD, and has a size that falls between CF and SD cards (it’s thicker than SD cards, but smaller than CF cards). The interface used is PCI Express, which has a theoretical max write speed of roughly 600MB/s, though the target for real-world write speeds at first will be 125MB/s. It’ll start making public appearances at trade shows early next year, and will be licenced out to card makers around the same time.