Sony’s 128G XQD cards are like gold dust and relatively expensive at £415 per card. No one has them in stock. Once again Sony have been overwhelmed by the uptake of the FS7 and although working 24/7 they can’t keep up with demand.
An alternative to the 128G XQD card is the 64G version which is just as hard to get so an alternative may be the Lexar 64G XQD card. Some users have identified a slight problem using the Lexar in the new Sony USB 3 “G” reader. Sony points out the “G” reader is for G cards only. Lexar sell a USB 3 or Thunderbolt hub that takes either XQD, Compact flash, SDHD/XC and CFast modules.
The good thing is its cheaper by £80 per card and more readily available but will it work with the FS7, one person who knows his technology is Alister Chapman. Price was obtained from CVP’s website.
Alister “Lexar have two classes of card a slower 1100x – 168MB/s card and a faster 1333x – 200MB/s card. For my tests I chose the faster 1333x card as this wasn’t much more expensive than the slower card and on paper at least matches or betters the Sony S series cards which can be used for all modes and frame rates. The 1100x card should also work just at least as well as an H series card, maybe N series, but I have not tested one and would recommend testing before use.
I tested the card across a large range of frame rates and resolutions going all the way up to UHD 60fps on the FS7 and SStP on the F5 as well as S&Q all the way to 180fps. I had no errors or other major problems. I did notice in the F5 that the it takes a little longer for the red light above the record slot to return to green at the end of a recording. While the slot light is red you cannot start a new recording so you do need to be aware that you may have a momentary delay before you can record the next clip.”
You can read Alister’s full article here : http://www.xdcam-user.com/2015/03/tested-lexar-xqd-cards-in-the-pxw-fs7-and-pmw-f5/
Philip Bloom has 14 of the faster 1333x Lexar 64G cards used for a worldwide doc for CNN “The Wonder List” and reports 100% compatibility with the Sony FS7.
Could this be produced, an XQD to SDXC adapter that takes SDXC C10 U3 cards, that would save us a packet on XQD cards. The demonstration above is to size so as you can see there is certainly room for an SDXC card.
Some of you will have gone down the external recording route with an Odyssey 7Q or an Atomos Shogun, but the majority of us are XQD owners and feel happier with less electronics hanging off our FS7’s. Lets hope the lack of XQD cards is a temporary blib and maybe Sony can thank us with some price deals on cards.