How to take care of your picture memory cards

Jens Nielsen, founder of Pictureline in Salt Lake City has expert advice on how to best care for memory cards.

Some of us remember the sick feeling of opening the back of our camera with exposed film (by accident) and realizing that undeveloped pictures exposed to light were lost forever. It is not much different than either erasing all or formatting a picture memory card, before downloading them to your computer.

It is always important to store your precious digital pictures in two places, in case either of them ever fails. However once the pictures are captured you still need to get them to a computer to download the picture files. We have found that it is just a matter of time before memory cards will start failing. The worst feeling a photographer get is when a memory card is being downloaded to a computer and the message appears “would you like to initialize.”

There are four tips to remember when using picture memory cards that can prevent card failure.

1. Don’t erase pictures in the camera: Wait until you download to your computer, if you run out of memory on your card, make sure to have another card.

2. Make sure you have enough battery and don’t pull the card until the memory card is finished writing: If the file is still writing when the battery runs out or card is pulled early, it corrupts the card.

3. Don’t take the last image on a card: Depending on your camera, it will tell you that there is room for one more image on your card. This is not always the case and will corrupt other pictures on your card.

4. Format your card often: In the settings menu of your camera there is a format function. This will insure that the card is completely void of any previous pictures and data.

If you have picture memory card that has failed and can’t recover, you can bring it to the store for recovery. Pictureline charges $10 per GB (gigabyte).

For more expert advise about all things photography related, please visit Pictureline online by clicking here.

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