Pro video blog…Produced by Philip Johnston DoP/Editor


I recently got this email from my colleague Vincent…

“Hi Phillip, wonder if I can ask some advice regarding a corrupt SD card. Last week, when loading my SD card into my PC, card reader to PC, the import hung,was making no progress,so I cancelled the import and proceeded re-import the card.
PC tells me the card is blank, needs re-formatted to use etc. I have downloaded a variety of software to try and recover the card but have not had any luck so far. Software tells me it is missing a file on the card to allow the software to proceed, real pain. Job contained a First Communion Shoot. Sony NX5 cannot see the card either. Any advice would be helpful.”
We are all to often relying on these flimsy plastic cards for our creative work but it’s a real shock when you open the card to see how borderline the world is between a working card and a corrupt card. I like most of you have dropped these cards on occasions but as you can see, dropping these cards could so easily dislodge the memory from the motherboard…not worth thinking about.

Having been working in the video business since 1988 I have amassed a great amount of knowledge of both the kit and production values over the last 30 years.

3 thoughts on “All our important information stored onto 2 slithers of plastic

  1. Hello, im a service tecnician in Portugal.

    In the specific case of the post above, when the problem is a cracked solder joint on the memory IC. One “last-resort-when-everything-faills” you could try is to strip the memory PCB from the pasting casing, and reposition the memory IC on its correct position and “cook” it on a domestic oven, for 200Cº for 10min. This will melt the solder joints and hoppefully resolder the memory IC.
    The memory PCB must be perfectly balanced in every position so the IC doesn’t slip from position.

    Look in youtube for similar videos for graphic cards chips and processor.


    Like i said, this is a “last-resort-when-everything-faills”

  2. A quick thought, but I’m not 100% sure it will work, as I said it is a thought. What would happen if you reformat the card and after that run the recovery software. As a general rule, formatting a disk leaves most if not all existing data on the disk medium. You can test it on another card first with some “rubbish” files on it. But if you feel that your life depend on those files, or if you suspect it is a serious hardware error that make it impossible to format the card. I would stop messing around with it and contact a professional firm like A fellow photographer had a usb drive that crashed with several years of material on it and they saved all files. It comes at a cost of course, my colleague paid several hundred euros but it was either that or gone forever.

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